St. Mary le Bow 104/13

Pages 256-260

Historical Gazetteer of London Before the Great Fire Cheapside; Parishes of All Hallows Honey Lane, St Martin Pomary, St Mary Le Bow, St Mary Colechurch and St Pancras Soper Lane. Originally published by Centre for Metropolitan History, London, 1987.

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In this section


This property occupied the W. side of Bow churchyard and was bounded to the S. by 12 and to the W. by a property in All Hallows Bread Street or St. Mary Magdalen Milk Street parish known at one time as the Brokenseld. To the N. 13 abutted on 15 and 16 in Cheapside, but there may have been adjustments to this boundary between the 13th and 17th centuries.

In 1858 the property was nos. 2-4 Bow Church Yard.

Thirteenth to fifteenth century

The descent of the property

In the mid to late 13th century the tenement, described as a messuage and solar and a shop, was held by Richard le Espicer and/or Ralph le Espicer, who owed a rent to St. Bartholomew's Priory. This seems to have been the £1 rent due from the house of Ralph apothecarius, recorded in a rental of 1306, which contains much outdated material. The property had probably passed to Roger Longus or le Long by 1273, when John le Botiler and his wife Margaret granted 10s. rent from the house of Roger Longus in the parish of St. Mary le Bow to Adam de Stratton, clerk. In 1293 the prior of St. Bartholomew's distrained in the tenement of John son of Roger le Lung for 8 1/4 years' arrears of £1 rent, of which he claimed he had been seised by the hands of one Richard le Especer, former tenant. John said that the tenement was only charged with 5s. rent, and the jury agreed with this. In 1302, however, the next prior distrained in the same tenement, taking a cooking-pot (cacabium) and two sheets (linteamina). He said that Ralph le Espicer and his wife Isabel had held a messuage and solar from him, in the right of Isabel, for the service of 15s. p.a., of which service his predecessor Hugh (d. 1295) had been seised, and he had distrained for £40. 5s. arrears on Ralph, kinsman and heir of Ralph le Espicer. The prior also said that one Richard le Espicer held of him a shop for 5s. p.a., now in arrears for 7 years. John le Lung, denying the 15s. rent, referred to the previous case and verdict. The prior repeated his claim, and a jury was summoned, but its verdict is not recorded. For the further descent of this and other quit-rents, see below. (fn. 1)

In 1293 the property appears to have been enlarged by the addition of a tenement to the N. In that year Richard de Arcubus, son and heir of John de Arcubus, late citizen and spicer, granted to John le Long a tenement (13B) with houses and appurtenances within the limits (of) the churchyard (infra septa cimiterium) of St. Mary le Bow. It lay between the churchyard to the E., the tenement (13A) of the said Roger le Lung (sic; the description may have been copied from an earlier deed, dating from the time when Roger held 13A) to the S. and W., and the tenements of John le Ail... and Stephen de Cornhill to the N. (15 and 16). John le Lung gave £5 and was to render a rose yearly, and Richard warranted his grant. Possibly Richard de Arcubus, later referred to as a spicer, was the Richard le Espicer mentioned in the prior of St. Bartholomew's plea. Although the whole property now belonged to John le Long, it contained 2 distinct parts for a time. Before 1300 John granted 13A to Alan de Sutton, saddler, for a term of years; it lay between 12 to the S., the grantor's tenement late of Richard de Arcubus, apothecary, (13B) to the N., the churchyard to the E., and the tenement of Richard le Sawere, carpenter, (in All Hallows Bread Street or St. Mary Magdalen Milk Street parish) to the W. In 1300 John quitclaimed all his right in the same to Alan, and in 1300-1 granted him the 2 shops with solar above (13B) in St. Mary le Bow parish, between Alan's tenement (13A) to the S. and W., the churchyard to the E., and 15 to the N. These grants seem to have been conditional, for in 1305, when his lands were valued for a debt, John le Loung was said to hold a tenement and shops in the parish of St. Mary le Bow, now held by Alan de Sutton as pledge (nomine pignoris) for a debt of 100 marks (£66. 23s. 4d.), and worth 6 marks (£4) p.a. after payment of 2 marks (£1. 6s. 8d.) in services to the chief lords and in repairs. Alan Ballard held the tenement to the S. of 15 in 1320. (fn. 2)

Roger le Long, corder (cordarius), son of John le Long, recovered 13 against Nicholas son and heir of Alan de Sutton, and in 1322 granted 2 marks (£1. 6s. 8d.) rent from it to William de Cawston, describing the property as bounded by 12 to the S., 15 to the N., Brokynselde to the W. and the churchyard to the E. The descent of this rent is described below. By his will proved in 1323 Roger le Long, corder, left his tenement with shop and solar in the parish of St. Mary le Bow to his wife Maud for life, with remainder to his son Reginald and his issue, to his daughter Mary and her issue, and ultimately for sale. In 1326 the king pardoned Roger le Longe's trespass in bequeathing in mortmain a rent of £1. 15s. from his capital messuage with brewhouse, which he bought of the heirs of Ralph le Spycer of the parish of St. Mary le Bow, to maintain a chaplain in the parish church, for the souls of the testator, his late wife Lucy, and his son John. The property was acquired before 1348 by Richard de Kyselingbury, citizen and draper, to whom Reginald, son and heir of Roger son of John le Long, Robert Holdwey of Rochester and his wife Alice, daughter of Roger son of John le Long, and Maud, widow and executrix of Roger le Long, made separate quitclaims. It lay between 12 to the S., Brokeneselde to the W., the churchyard to the E., and 2 shops sometime of Ralph de Upton and a shop held by John de Abyndon to the N. The shops of Ralph de Upton might have been 15, or possibly part of 13: in 1354 William de Causton described his rent of 2 marks (£1. 6s. 8d.) granted by Roger le Long, as due from the tenements sometime of Roger le Ropere, and the shop which Ralph de Upton sometime held. (fn. 3)

In 1358 the king, as owner of 12, complained that Richard de Kyslyngbury's rebuilding had encroached on his property and obstructed his lights. De Kyslyngbury had made a partition (paries) on the king's wall, 28 ft. 1 in. (8.56 m.) in length and overhanging by 3/4 in. to 2 1/4 in. (19 mm. to 57 mm.), and had built jetties in front of his house (extending) 1 3/4 ells (5 ft. 9 in.; 1.75 m.) in front of 12, blocking its lights. Now the rainwater from a chamber of de Kyslyngbury's 10 3/4 ells 13 in. (33 ft. 2 in.; 10.11 m.) long fell onto 12. He had also made 3 cellars beside the churchyard, with 3 entrances and 8 windows within the churchyard ground, measuring 28 ft. 2 in. in length and 25 ft. 2 in. in width (8.59 m. by 7.67 m.), obstructing the king's way through the churchyard. The way in which the cellars encroached on the churchyard is not clear, but perhaps an area was dug out to allow access to the entrances and light to the windows. Possibly these cellars are identical with the vault under nos. 4 and 3 Bow Churchyard (which correspond to the S. part of 13) described in 1844. The site of nos. 4 and 3 measured some 25 ft. E.-W. and 53 ft. N.-S. (7.62 m. by 16.15 m.) but it is not clear which part of this was occupied by the vault, which measured 9 ft. by 18 ft. (2.74 m. by 5.49 m.), and 7 ft. (2.13 m.) in height. The arches of the vault were plain, not ribbed, and more pointed than that under 12 (q.v.), possibly of (early) 16th-century form. There was an outer vault under no. 4, with an entrance to it and the other vault by a 'depressed Tudor arch', with plain spandrels, 6 ft. (1.83 m.) high, the walls about 4 ft. (1.22 m.) thick. In the E. wall of no. 3 (the northern part of the site) were triangular-headed niches, similar to piscinae. (fn. 4)

Richard de Kyslingbury also acquired 104/1, 2 and 3, and by his will of 1361 left all his tenements in the parish of St. Mary le Bow to his wife Alice for life, charged with part of a rent of 16 marks (£10. 13s. 4d.) for chaplains in the churches of St. Mary le Bow and Holy Trinity the Less, with remainder for sale. The descent of the properties after his death until the mid 15th century is given under 104/3, above. In 1406 Edmund Salle, citizen and draper, and his wife Alice, widow of Richard de Kyslingbury, lived in 13, described as a messuage with houses, cellar(s), and solar(s) on the W. side of the churchyard. They also had a chamber or garret (garitus) adjoining the messuage to the W., formerly parcel of the same and now occupied by William Sutton, chaplain, as well as 3 in Bow Lane. (fn. 5)

In 1455 13, to the E. of Brokenseld, was described as the tenement formerly of Thomas Malton, now of John Rotherham of Enfield (Mdx.), and the tenement of John de Rotheham, gentleman, lay to the N. of 12 in 1458. John (de) Rothom also held 3, probably all originally in the right of his wife Marion, widow of Thomas Malton, esquire. He granted 13, his lands and tenements in the churchyard of St. Mary le Bow iuxta Westchepe in Cordwainer Street ward, to Thomas Wilkynson, clerk, William Heryot, barber (tonsor), William Haydok, grocer, Thomas Fermory, scrivener, and William Couper, barber (tonsor), who in 1468 granted the same to John Alburgh, Henry Newman, John Stokton, alderman, and John Warde, citizens and mercers, to hold to the use of Alburgh and Newman. They granted and quitclaimed in the same tenements to John Norman, citizen, draper, and alderman, who by a will specifically for this purpose, dated 1468 and proved 1479, left the property to the rector and churchwardens of St. Mary le Bow, charged with a rent of £2. 5s. to be paid to the Trinity priest celebrating at the altar of the Holy Tinity in the church of St. Mary le Bow, the residue of the profits to be spent to the church's use according to the churchwardens' discretion. (fn. 6)

The descent of the quit-rents

The quit-rent claimed by St. Bartholomew's Priory in the late 13th and early 14th centuries is not recorded after 1407, when the prior brought a plea of intrusion against Edmund Salle, his wife Alice, and the other feoffees of 3 and 13 at that period, probably for disseisin of this rent. The rent of 10s. from the house of Roger Longus granted by John le Botiler and his wife Margaret to Adam de Stratton in 1273 passed with Adam's other properties to the Crown on his downfall (see 104/24). Edward II granted it, with numerous other rents, to Walter de Shependon, kt., to hold for life, and in 1339 Edward III granted the reversion of it on de Shependon's death to Reginald de Conductu, describing it as due from the tenement of Maud la Repere (who is probably identical with Maud, widow of Roger le Long, corder or roper) in the churchyard of St. Mary le Bow. The rent seems subsequently to have been acquired by Merton Priory, which in the 1530s had a 10s. rent from a shop or workshop (opella) in the parish of St. Mary le Bow held by the churchwardens. The rent passed to the Crown on the dissolution of the priory and still seems to have been payable in the mid-17th century. (fn. 7)

A quit-rent of 2 marks (£1. 6s. 8d.) from his own tenement was granted by Roger son of John de Long, corder, to William de Causton in 1322. Maud, widow of Roger, quitclaimed all right of dower in the same in 1323. By his will, dated and proved 1354, William de Causton, mercer, left his quit-rent of 2 marks from the tenements sometime of Roger le Ropere and the shop which Ralph de Upton sometime held, in the parish of St. Mary le Bow, with numerous other quit-rents, to 2 chaplains in the church of St. Pancras, celebrating for the souls of himself, his late wife Denise, his uncle William de Causton, and Edith Palmere. This bequest does not seem to have been effective, as in 1406 Isabella, widow of Thomas Hochous of Causton (Norfolk) and cousin and heir of William Causton, late citizen and mercer, granted and quitclaimed in the rents specified in William's will, including this one of 2 marks, to Alan Everard and Nicholas Hamme, mercers, and Richard Style junior, fishmonger, all citizens. This rent is not recorded after this date and does not seem to have been paid in the 16th century. (fn. 8)

Sixteenth and seventeenth centuries

In 1541 13 was probably occupied by Mistress Marlowe (? Marler), George Elyott, and Andrew Fowllare. In 1546 the parish held by John Norman's bequest 3 tenements in the churchyard, held at will by Wat Marler at £5. 13s. 4d. p.a., by George Eliott at £5. 13s. 4d., and by Andrew Fuller at £5. The properties were charged with £2. 5s. to the morrow mass or Trinity priest and a 10s. quit-rent to the Crown; the residue of the issues was to the church's use. The £2. 5s. rent passed to the Crown in 1548, and was paid by the churchwardens until 1558, when the king and queen, by letters patent, created the rector and churchwardens and their successors a body corporate, able to hold lands, and granted them this rent and 3A in Bow Lane. (fn. 9) The tenement held on lease by Walter Marler had earlier been held by his mother Alice, widow of William Marlar, late citizen and haberdasher. By her will of 1544 she left Walter her lease and term in the messuage in which she lived in Bow churchyard. By his will of 1561 Walter Marler, citizen and haberdasher, left his lease and term in the tenement in which he lately dwelt in Bow churchyard to his son Walter in tail, with remainder to his nephew George Marler, son of his brother Antony. Walter Marler also left £50 to the rector and churchwardens of St. Mary le Bow if they would make a lease of the same to his son, for 40 or 50 years from the end of the current term. (fn. 10)

The tenants of this property in 1638 were probably Mr. Thomas Russell, Mr. Pennington, and Mr. Dipfort (? Dixford), each paying tithe for a house worth £30. Russell also held a shop, part of 16 (q.v.), and his was probably the northernmost tenement (13C), which adjoined 16. Pennington's was the middle (13B) and Dipfort's the southernmost (13A): these divisions, probably those present by 1546, do not seem to correspond with the late 13th-and early 14th-century divisions of the property. (fn. 11)

13A was leased to Judith Dixford, widow, in 1651, and occupied by John Rayley in 1661. John Rayly, merchant, occupied a house with 7 hearths in Bow churchyard in 1666. 13A was said to be held under Judith Dixford's lease by John Rayley, citizen and draper, at the time of the Great Fire. A foundation was surveyed for John Riley in Bow churchyard in June 1668, bounded by Clement Stone(r) (12) to the S., Matthew Howard (13B) to the N., the churchyard to the E., and Jacob Strange to the W. It measured some 26-27 ft. N.-S. by 47-49 ft. E.-W. (7.92-8.23 m. by 14.33- 14.94 m.). In November 1668 the parish granted a lease for 99 years at £5 rent to Rayley, in consideration of the surrender of the lease in being, £67. 9s. 9d. paid, and his rebuilding by May 1669. The toft leased was said to contain about 50 ft. E.-W. and 26 ft. 6 in. N.-S. (15.24 m. by 8.08 m.), abutting on the churchyard to the E., the back rooms or warehouse of Lawrence Waldo, grocer, to the W., Clement Stoner's messuage to the S., and the messuage occupied at the time of the Fire by Daniel Pennington to the N. Rayley was to repair the tenement after rebuilding and not to let it to anyone who would convert it into a tavern or victualling house, or 'exercise any noxious trade such as that of smith, cutler, joiner, cutter, pewterer, brazier, cook, chandler, or the dressing of hemp or flax.' (fn. 12)

13B was occupied by (Daniel) Pennington in 1638 and 1666. Matthew Howard, merchant, occupied it in 1661 and in 1666, when the house was said to have 9 hearths. A foundation was surveyed for Howard in Bow churchyard in February 1668, similar in dimensions to 13A, and abutting W. on an old wall. There is no record of the subsequent lease of this property. (fn. 13)

It is not certain who occupied 13C in 1666, but it might have been Thomas Wamsley or Wimberley, merchant, with a house with 6 hearths in Bow churchyard, next to 13B. At the time of the Fire, however, 13B was held or occupied by Richard Hiller, citizen and draper, who also held 15. In 1668 the parish leased him the toft, for £100 and in consideration of rebuilding, for 99 years at £5 rent. The toft measured 50 ft. E.-W., 121 ft. 6 in. N.-S. (15.24 m. by 6.55 m.), abutting E. on the churchyard, W. on warehouses late occupied by Barnes, N. on the premises late occupied by Lenan (16), and S. on premises late occupied by Pennington (13B). The lease included provisions for the prevention of noxious trades, as in Rayley's. Hiller also held 15; no foundation was surveyed for 13C, but those for 13B, 15, and 16 show Hiller or Hilliard, or parish ground, in this position. (fn. 14)


  • 1. HCP 22, m. 1d, 27, m. 11; Webb Records of St. Bartholomew's i, 470; HR 5(8).
  • 2. HR 22(4), 39(179, 180); LBC, 243-4 (f. 151v); HR 49(40-1).
  • 3. GL, MS 5020 (St. Pancras Cart) f. 56r-v; HR 52(10); Cal Pat R 1324-7, pp. 308-9; HR 75(18, 19, 23), 82(73).
  • 4. CLRO, Misc Roll EE (Escheats) mm. 31d, 32d; Archaeologia xxxi, 318-19.
  • 5. See 3; HR 89(145), 134(9).
  • 6. Salters' Company, MS H1/2/1; Cal Pat R 1452-61, p. 463; HR 198(6), 209(11).
  • 7. HCP 131, m. 5d; HR 5(8); Cal Pat R 1338-40, pp. 389- 90. PRO: SC6/Hen 8/3463-8; SC6/Edw 6/291, m. 31; E308/3/20, m. 54v; SC11/957.
  • 8. GL, MS 5020 (St. Pancras Cart), ff. 55v-56v; HR 82(73), 134(4, 124).
  • 9. PRO, E179/144/120; PRO, LR2/242, pp. 82-91; Chant C, no. 77. PRO: LR2/244, f. 10v; SC6/Edw 6/293-7; SC 6/Phil & Mary/181-3; SP14/106, p. 26. Cal Pat R 1557- 8, pp. 90-1.
  • 10. PRO: PROB11/23, f. 225; PROB11/30, ff. 118v-119; PROB11/44, f. 200r-v.
  • 11. Inhabitants in 1638, p. 109.
  • 12. GL: MS 5006/1, f. 339; MS 7811 (19th-century abstract of deeds). CLRO, Assessments Box 3.6, f. 6v; PRO, E179/252/32/16; M & O iv, f. 61.
  • 13. CLRO, Assessments Box 3.6, f. 6v; PRO, E179/252/32/16; M & O iv, f. 2.
  • 14. GL: MS 5006/1, f. 339; MS 7811. PRO, E179/252/32/16; CLRO, Alchin Box F no. 65; M & O iv, ff. 2, 56r-v, 100.