Chronicles of the Mayors and Sheriffs: 1243-4

Pages 10-11

Chronicles of the Mayors and Sheriffs of London 1188-1274. Originally published by Trübner, London, 1863.

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A.D. 1243. Sheriffs.: Hugh Blund, Goldsmith,; Adam de Giseburne,

In this year, Ralph Eswy was again made Mayor, and presented to his lordship the King, at Westminster. In this year, there were Pleas of the Crown at the Tower of London on the morrow of the (fn. 1) Hokeday, which lasted until the Feast of Saint Barnabas the Apostle [11 June]. In these pleas were remitted the (fn. 2) essoins, which were wont to be presented on the day before the day of Pleas of the Crown at the gate of the Tower of London, as to the death of those who had been (fn. 3) attached until the holding of the Pleas of the Crown; upon the understanding that the sureties of such persons should be always held indemnified before the Justiciar, if the death of the persons so bailed should be testified by the Alderman and the (fn. 4) visnet. In these pleas, there was a law ordained for (fn. 5) foreigners attached in the City for homicide, to the effect that they shall put themselves on the verdict of two-and-forty men sworn of the three Wards next adjoining, as to whether they are guilty thereof, or not; and this before the Justiciars. In these pleas William Bream (fn. 6) waged the Great Law, and completed it excellently well. At this time his lordship the King took the City into his hand, that is to say, on the morrow of the Holy Trinity, for the harbouring of Walter Buriler, without warrant for so doing; and re-delivered it unto Ralph Eswy, Mayor of London, to be held in his keeping, until his return from Scotland. For, a short time after this, he warred, with a great army, against the King of Scotland; but they came to terms.


  • 1. Or "Hocktide," the second Tuesday after Easter; when "hocking," a species of rough and practical jokes, was extensively practised.
  • 2. Lawful excuses, put in by defendants, or their representatives, for non-appearance in Court.
  • 3. Persons suspected but allowed to go at large, on mainprise or bail, until the time of trial.
  • 4. Or "visnue," "venue," or neighbourhood.
  • 5. I. e. non-freemen.
  • 6. I. e. placed himself on the verdict of thirty-six jurors or compurgators; who all, on oath, pronounced him not guilty.