Chronicles of the Mayors and Sheriffs of London 1188-1274. Originally published by Trübner, London, 1863.
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A.D. 1268. Sheriffs.: The aforesaid Walter Hervi,; And William de Dureham,
These persons continued to be (fn. 1) Bailiffs in form aforesaid, and that, without election by the citizens, and without precept of his lordship the King.
In this year, when all the Baronage of the kingdom of England had come to London, by precept of his lordship the King, to hold a Parliament there as to the state of the realm, there came thither Master Walter Giffard, Archbishop of York; who, in derogation of the dignity of the Archbishop of Canterbury in his own diocese, had a cross carried before him; such (fn. 2) diocese extending through all places from the river of Humber to the South, as far as the sea. For which reason the said Archbishop of Canterbury laid the City of London under interdict, as also the district without the City for a distance of two miles on every side, so that no divine service was celebrated there, except in silence; and no bells were rung, save in the City only. Nor yet, for all this, would the said Archbishop of York withdraw himself; but through pride and haughtiness, in contravention of the liberties and dignity of the Church of Canterbury, had this cross borne before him so long as he remained in these parts. This he did after the Feast of Saint Hilary.
In this year, there was a most severe winter; and a great frost, beginning before the Feast of Saint Andrew the Apostle [30 November], lasted until nearly the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary [2 February].
In this year, the water of Thames arose on the Feast of Saint Vincent [22 January], reaching a greater height than it had ever done in the time of any person then living; so much so, that many manors, houses, and even men, were overwhelmed by the inundation.
This year, in the first week of Lent, his lordship the King delivered unto Sir Edward, his son, the City of London and the Tower; who thereupon immediately made Sir Hugh Fitz-Otes Constable of the Tower and Warden of the City.
In this year, Sir Edmund, son of his lordship the King, married (Avelina) daughter of the Count of Aubemarle, in the Conventual Church of Westminster, in presence of his lordship the King, the Queen, Sir Edward, eldest son of his said lordship the King, and many other nobles of the realm of England; upon which day his lordship the King held a great and most noble Court in his Great Hall there, that is to say, on the ninth day of April, which in this year was (fn. 3) Hokeday.
This year, upon the Feast of Saint Erkenwald, on the last day of April, that is to say, by precept of his lordship the King, there were chosen by the citizens, Robert de Corenhelle, (fn. 4) Thomas de Basinges, Edward Blund, Walter le Poter, (fn. 5) William de Hadestoke, and (fn. 6) Anketil de Auverne; who, on the third day after, set out for Wyndleshores to go before his lordship the King; and on the morrow the King chose from those six men Robert de (fn. 7) Corenhelle and Thomas de Basinges, to be his Bailiffs and to be answerable unto him for the issues of the Sheriffwick of London and Middlesex. Which Robert and Thomas, on the Monday next after their return, were presented in the Guildhall of London before the commons of that City, being the sixth day of May. This year, on Wednesday in the week of Pentecost, Sir Henry, son of the King of Almaine, married at Wyndleshores the daughter of a certain noble of Acquitaine, Gaston de Byerne by name.
Be it remarked, that whereas his lordship the King, this time three years before, had granted unto Sir Edward his son, to take custom of all things coming by sea into England and from England going forth, and such custom had been leased unto certain Italians upon yearly payment to Sir Edward of a ferm of six thousand marks; the said Italians exacted the same custom of the citizens of London, and took sureties of them, in contravention of their franchises. Wherefore the citizens went to Sir Edward, and begged of him that he would not allow such a yoke of servitude to be imposed upon them, in contravention of the franchises by the Charters of his lordship the King, his father, and of his predecessors, Kings of England, unto them granted: whereupon, Sir Edward, at their entreaty, granted unto them acquittance of the custom aforesaid, giving them his letters Patent thereon. The citizens, however, made court to him, giving him 200 marks.
Letters of Sir Edward as to remission unto the Citizens of the New Custom.
"Edward, of the illustrious King of England eldest son, to all per- sons to whom these present letters shall come, greeting in the Lord. Know ye, that we have granted, and by this our present writing have confirmed, unto all and singular the citizens of London, that they shall for ever be free and acquitted, throughout all the realm of England, of our new aid, which we have of the gift of our father, his lordship the King; that so neither we, nor our heirs, nor any one through us, or for us, may exact aught of the citizens aforesaid by reason of the said aid, or in any way claim the same; but that the aforesaid citizens and their heirs, as well for time past as for the present and the future, may for ever enjoy such franchise and may remain free and acquitted. In testimony whereof, we have unto them caused these our letters patent to be made. Given at (fn. 8) Cipeham, this 26th day of April, in the three-and-fiftieth of the reign of his lordship the King, our father."
Be it remembered, that about the Feast of Saint Andrew [30 November] last past, died Pope Clement the Fourth; and after his death the Roman See remained vacant for a long time, because the Cardinals, with whom the election lies, were at variance; so that there was no Pope for (fn. 9) three years and more.
Be it remembered, that on the Tuesday before the Feast of Saint Laurence [10 August] Sir Edward departed from London, at the request of the King of France that he would attend a conference with him in France; and proceeding by ship as far as Graveshend, found staying there the King of Almaine, his uncle, who had arrived from his own territories; whereupon Sir Edward took up his quarters at (fn. 10) Nortflete. On the morrow, the said King and Sir Edward before-named held a great and long conference between them, as to the said Edward crossing over, and other matters as well; after which, Sir Edward set out for Dover. But the said King on the Thursday following came to London, and his Queen with him, whom he had lately married in the territories of Almaine, being the daughter of a certain noble of that land. Afterwards, on the day before the Vigil of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary [15 August], Sir Edward, Sir Henry of Almaine, Sir Roger de Leyburne, Sir Robert Walraven, Sir Gaston de Byerne, and many other knights and men-at-arms, crossed over.
After this, on the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Mary [8 September] next ensuing, the said Edward landed at Dover, on his return from the said conference; where a convention had been made between the said King of France and himself, in such form as in this book, in the French language, is below set forth.—
(fn. 11) "Louis, by the grace of God, King of France, to all those who these letters shall see, greeting. We do give you to understand, that between us and our very dear cousin, my lord Edward, eldest son of the noble King of England, there have been made by common accord, as to his departure on a pilgrimage beyond sea, the following covenants.— We are bound to lend unto the aforesaid Edward 70,000 (fn. 12) Iivres Tournois, reckoning in such sum 25,000 livres Tournois, which Gaston, Viscount de Byarne, was to have had of us for himself, and for his passage, and for that of his people whom he was to have taken in pilgrimage beyond sea with us; the aforesaid Edward having received the same Gaston and his people into companionship with himself: and from the same 70,000 livres, shall be delivered for horses, for provisions, for ships, and for passage, of the same Edward, whatever shall be needful unto him ; and the same shall be duly paid by our people, or by those whom we shall appoint thereunto, unto those of whom the things aforesaid shall be taken or bought by the said Edward, upon view of such persons as he shall see fit to appoint thereunto. And if there shall be any part thereof remaining over, the same shall be delivered unto the same Edward, wherever he shall be beyond sea, after he shall have come unto us. And the aforesaid monies, the said Edward is bound to repay unto us, that is to say, 10,000 livres in each year, at the two terms underwritten, until we shall have been wholly repaid all the said 70,000 livres. And the first payment, that is to say, of 5,000 livres, shall begin in the middle of March, in the year of Our Lord's Incarnation 1273; and the next payment, of another 5,000 marks, at the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist [24 June] next ensuing; and so from year to year at those times, until such time as we shall have been fully paid. And these monies shall be paid each year at the Temple at Paris, within the quinzaine after the times above named, from the tribute monies of (fn. 13) Burdeaus, by the hand of the Constable of the said Edward, or by him who shall hold his place, or else by command of the same. And the same Edward doth will that of such tribute, at each term, there shall be nothing put to any other use, until such time as we shall wholly have had the payment for each such term; the which tribute the aforesaid Edward has assigned unto us in manner aforesaid, and has bound himself thereunto, and has witnessed in his letter which he has delivered unto us, that it is by the wish of our dear cousin the King of England, his father, for the amount of monies aforesaid. And he doth will, that we shall be paid therefrom, each year from henceforth, without fail, in manner as aforesaid. And as to this assignment and obligation, the same Edward is to let us have letters from our dear cousin the King of England, his father aforesaid, together with letters of his own. And if it should happen that, before the monies aforesaid shall be paid, the same Edward should hold more territory than he holds at the present time in the realm of France, the same Edward doth will that the same shall also be bound for the payment aforesaid. And, with all this, he doth charge for the payment unto us aforesaid, if default therein there shall be, his goods both moveable and immoveable, the which may be found in our realm. And further, he has promised unto us, that he will be, at the very latest, by the Assumption of Our Lady [15 August] next to come, at the port of (fn. 14) Eguemorte, ready to pass over, unless he shall have some excuse for delay, by reason whereof we may hold him excused. And if so be, that he shall not come unto us by reason of such excuse as aforesaid, which may God forbid, he doth will and doth authorize, that of those tilings which his people shall have bought with the monies aforesaid, we shall retain and shall take that which we shall think fit, at the price at which the same shall have been bought; and that the residue shall be sold by his people freely, without hindrance by any person, and the monies which shall be the proceeds thereof shall be paid unto us, or at our order, in acquittance of the loan aforesaid; and that which shall still remain wanting towards making payment in full of the said sum, shall be taken according to the assignment aforesaid, according to the meaning of the terms before-named. And further, the same Edward hath promised that he will endeavour, in good faith, to pass over and to come, so soon as ever he may, to the place where we shall be. And also, he has promised ingoodfaith that he will do no aggrievance or damage, himself or by his people, in our territory, or in the territory of our brothers, which they have in our realm or without, either going on his pilgrimage, remaining thereon, or returning therefrom. And so long as he shall be on his pilgrimage with us, he will obey us in good faith, just as one of our Barons of our own realm, in (fn. 15) doing the service of Our Lord. And all these things aforesaid the said Edward has sworn unto us, upon the Holy Evangelists, that he will strictly observe and loyally maintain, and in good faith wholly perform; and more especially as to this article thereof, that is to say, his coming unto the port aforesaid and his passing on unto the place where we shall be, in manner as is before-mentioned. And the same Edward is to deliver at Paris, before Candlemas [2 February] next ensuing, one of his sons as a hostage, unto ourselves or at our command; the which son shall be wholly acquitted of, and delivered from, such hostageship, so soon as the said Edward shall have come unto the place where we shall be; and we will have him delivered, acquitted thereof, unto the said Edward his father. And if it should happen that the said Edward should die before he comes to us, or other hindrance should happen unto him, which may God forbid, whereby we should hold him excused, in mannera as aforesaid, the child shall be delivered, wholly acquitted, unto him, or unto his mother, or at her command, or unto the King of England his father, or unto the Queen his mother, or at their command, if it should have so happened that the mother of the child has died first. And unto such delivery we are bound, ourselves as well as our heirs. And in witness of these things the same Edward has delivered unto us his present letters, sealed with his seal. And thereunto withal, our dear cousin Henry, eldest son of the King of Almaine, Gaston Viscount de Byarne, Thomas de Clare, brother of the Earl of Gloucester, Roger de Leyburne, [and] Robert Walerand, Knights, have made oath upon the Holy Evangelists, at the request of the aforesaid Edward, that they will endeavour in good faith, and will loyally give counsel and pains, that the aforesaid Edward shall keep and accomplish the covenants aforesaid. And they have set unto the letters of the said Edward their seals, with the seal of the said Edward, in witness of all these matters aforesaid. And we, in witness of the matters aforesaid, have unto these present letters caused our seal to be set. This was done at Paris, the Wednesday next after the Feast of Saint Bartholomew the Apostle [24 August], in the year of Our Lord 1269."
(fn. 16) The deeds and works of good men are reduced to writing, that so, to their praise and endless glory, they may be handed down to the memory of posterity; and in like manner ought the cruelties, the malice, the perfidy, and the wickedness of the iniquitous, to be put in writing, that so, to their disgrace, reproach, and dishonour, the same may, in future times, unto the whole world be notified. Hence it is, that it ought not to be passed over in silence what wickedness and what cruelty Thomas Fitz-Thomas and Thomas de Pivvelesdon, and their iniquitous accomplices, amid the many evils which they had committed during the commotions in the kingdom of England, thought to perpetrate and hoped to carry into effect: and the same would have been done, had it not been prevented by the Battle of Evesham occurring. For at the time when Sir Edward and the Earl of Gloucester, and their adherents, were at Gloucester, the Earl of Leicester and his accomplices, as also his lordship the King—although not of his own free will—being at Hereford, the before-named Thomas and Thomas, and other wicked persons, holding conference among themselves, whether or not at the command of the Earl of Leicester I know not, made arrangement, and by oath confirmed the same, that suddenly and unexpectedly they would put to death about forty of the most lawful men of the City; and this, because they were faithful to his lordship the King and to Sir Edward his son. For on a day named, namely the Thursday after Saint Peter's Chains [1 August], the whole of the commonalty was summoned to appear at the Guildhall, that so among them the men aforesaid might be seized, and immediately put to death. Accordingly, on that day the wicked persons before-mentioned came there with arms beneath their clothes, their accomplices rushing in in troops, ready and prepared with swords and other arms to perpetrate the felony aforesaid; when, behold! news came of the battle which had been fought at Evesham on the Tuesday preceding; upon hearing which, these wicked men of Belial abandoned their design, and so on that day the innocent blood was saved.
The names of the principal persons whom it was so intended to slay:—
John de Gizors; William Fitz-Richard; John Addrien, Draper; William de Durham; Gregory de Rokesle; Reginald de Suffolch; Arnald (fn. 17) Thedmar; Robert de Corenhelle; Geoffrey de Wincestre; John Derkin; Bartholomew de Chastel:—between which last person and one of the evil-minded there afterwards arose a wordy strife, the said Bartholomew taking the part of Sir Edward, and the other one the part of the Earl of Leicester.