Petitions to the Westminster Quarter Sessions: 1630s

Petitions to the Westminster Quarter Sessions, 1620-1799.

This free content was born digital and sponsored by the Economic History Society and the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the cost of transcribing eighteenth-century items was funded by a later Economic History Society Carnevali Small Research Grant: ‘Poverty, Taxation and Regulation: Petitions to Local magistrates in Eighteenth-Century England’ and the other costs, including photography and transcription of seventeenth-century items and editorial work, were funded by an Arts and Humanities Research Council Research Grant: ‘The Power of Petitioning in Seventeenth-Century England’ (AH/S001654/1). CC-NC-BY.


In this section

John Thorney butcher. WJ/SR/NS/028/98 (1630)

To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of peace for the cittie and liberty of Westminster now assembled.

The humble peticion John Thorney butcher.

Humby sheweth.

That the Tewsday before Whitsuntide last your petitioner accompanying with on William Brackston butcher to buy cattell in the country the said Brackston falling out with the hedburrow of Fulham and your petitioner takeing his part had his head broken and sett in the stockes 3 houres with the said Brackston, for which the said headburrow gave the said Brackston xx shillings and bound your petitioner to the peace: since which time the said Brackston and his wife for no cause beate your petitioner and his wife, insomuch that they were not able to follow their calling in a fortnight to his greate losse and hindrance, that upon Whitson Eve the said Brackston arrested your petitioner into the Kinges Bench in the midst of his markett and deteined him 3 houres prisoner thoughe hee had sufficient surities ready for his appearance, which arrest and fees cost him iiii shillings besides his hinderance upon which arrest your petitioner appered the first daie of this last terme which cost him v shillings and yet the said Brackston never retained his attorney nor yet declared against him. After that he arrested your petitioner and his wife into the Marshallseas where it cost them in fees and other chardges vi shillings vi pence and their appeareance the first courte daie v shillings ii pence the second courte day iiii shillings and the third court day being this presente Friday iii shillings viii pence and moved the Marshalls man to arrest them severally whereby to put them to double fees and chardges soe that his whole chardge comes to, with taking the peace of him at Fulham, xxxiii shillings and iiii pence besides his losse and hindreance in his calling.

Therefore his most humble suite is that your worships wilbe pleased to take the busines into your worships consideracion and examine the same and thereupon to afford him such lawfull favour for his redresse herein as in equitie your worships shall thincke meete for that hee is apoore man haveing a charge of wife and children to mainteine upon his owne labour and he shall etc

Ro: Rogers. WJ/SR/NS/036/4 (1633)

Noble gentlemen

Allthough it was [my?] ill fortune to be brought fore you at the [tri...?] yet under favour I hope my offence was not such that of necessitye I must be pulled and hailed a longe the streete and used worse then a theife or cuttpurse I did not denye to give what soeever you gentlemen of the bench did a warde but onlye intreated for a mittigation, which if you will be [illegible] pleased to take yt into your consideratione I shall accknowledge my thankfullnes, (if not) I must and will paye yt allthough Master [Rea?] hath not dealte well with me, I was not suffered to paye not tell I could paye yt, but thrust into a prisson and used with such reprochfull speches that it was unpossible for any man to suffer it they durst not have donne yt unles some greater then themselfes set them one [to?] some other ends I vowe to God I gave them not a beseminge worde, wherfore lett me intreate that they maye give an accoumpte for yt, upon what ground they doe yt

I am assured it was not my Lord of [Lyn...?] desire I should be used with such rigor but patience

Make me your humble servant

  • Ro: Rogers
  • Jane Huett, wife of Paule Huett. WJ/SR/NS/038/7 (1634)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace assembled in this sessions for the cittie and liberties of Westminster

    The humle peticion of Jane Huett the wife of Paule Huett.

    Humblie sheweth: that where your petitioner is bownd over to appeare this sessions by a French woman the wife of one Harris whoe hath left and forsaken her, for her ill course of life which the said French woman more of malice then of anie just cause into doth prosecute your petitioner therefore humblie giveth your worshipfull bench to understand that your petitioners husband, all that he can reape and runne from your petitioner he bringeth to this French woman to mainteine her: her ringes money, or whatsoever elles. This French woman hath noe meanes, but what she getteth, by uttering counterfeite jewelles, and other toyes. Your petitioner [illegible] therefore humblie beseecheth you of your goodnes, that some order maie be taken with this woman the rather because your petitioner goeth in dread of her life, both in respect of this woman, and alsoe of your petitioners husband, whoe hath almost cripled your petitioner; and hath had a bastard by her lyving, and doth mainteyne them to this daie. And your petitioner shall have right good cause to pray etc.

    Thomas Palmer, a very poor man. WJ/SR/NS/039/39 (1634)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the cittie and libertie of Westminster and countie of Middlesex now present

    The humble supplication of Thomas Palmer a very poore man

    Humbly shewinge that James Parteredge a barber in Westminster begatt a base child of the body of one Alice Baylee which in her greatest extremitie and payne before her delivery affirmed and vowed in the presence of the midwife and others that Parteredge the barber and non other was father of the said child and by recognizance he is to appeare this quarter sessions to answere his offence

    Now so it is right worshipfull the parents of the said Parteredge have taken away the child from the parish and the peticioner being a cooke, hath laid out his stocke he used to imploye for meat for his shopp, to provid food and necessarys for the said Alice att and since her beinge in child bed, and the said James Parteredge and his parents that taketh part in the cause doe intend not to pay the peticioner his disbursements nor allowe him for the great hinderance and damage he hath susteyned for want of the use of the roome where the said woeman lyeth in so that it is most apparant unles your worshipps be good unto the peticioner himselfe wife and 3 children are utterly undone for ever and shalbe cast into the street for want of money to pay his rent and hee and his shall starve for want of food havinge not any meanes to live upon but what he is to have from the said Parteredge who hath latlie married a wife with a good estate

    The poore peticioner beseecheth your worshipps for Gods cause to be pleased to order and enjoyne the said James Parteredge to give the petitioner such present satisfaccion your worshipp in your grave wisdomes shall conceive fitting

    And the peticioner shall pray

    John Thompson. WJ/SR/NS/040/24 (1634)

    Good Master Haward

    I must soe (without flatterie) intitle you, for I find all your proceedinges (which come at any tyme within my cognizance) to be soe warrented; all which let me tell you (though our church holds not the point of meritt with God) yet it may certainely, and does meritt amoungst men, the approba= tion (I meane) of a good man, the dearest and choysest portion I hold bequeathed unto the sonns of men; thus much (without the least tange I profess of any desire I have to flatter you) I prefix as a preamble to my followinge suite unto you in the behalfe of this poore widow Susan Price, whoe informes me that havinge noe other means to maintayne her live-hood then sellinge of beere, which course of life by her unkind starrs, she hath beene longe destined unto, beinge borne under a happier planett, a gentle woeman of good parentage (as I am informed) and well educated; and that in this course of life she proceeds fayre and regularly, not suffringe any disorder to be in her house, the prime commendation, and which is seldome or rarely found in houses of that constitution; admittinge all this to be true, which in charitie (especiallie receivinge it from warrantable mouths) I must give my share of beleife unto it; howsoever she informes me that you onely amoungst the rest of the justices of Midlesex have taken exception against her as holdinge her not fitt to continue any longer that course of life; Sir I dare not be soe bold as to entertaine soe much as a wry-thought, much more a word, in tellinge you that this is a course of some extre= mitie as I conceive, my conceipt of you beinge (as I began) cleare, and without any such cloud or surmise of jealousie; you standinge at a neerer distance and havinge the truth appearinge unto you in its proper cullors, which may be brought unto me onely in false and fained; and therefore (not to be further troublesome unto you or my selfe my request is, that if you upon examination shall find her to deserve favor you would not denie it her in continuinge her licence still in this poore way of livehood, with out which (I am given to understand) she can noe way subsist; her husband havinge left her much in debt and the more for my sake whoe tender much her [distressed?] condition, and [illegible] for it shall you make my score the greater with you, but if she deserves none, my debt unto you shall be the same, not heerein to shew [her?] any; thus tempered is the request of your very assured

    • John Thompson Canbury 3 October 1634

    Bowland Hodgton. WJ/SR/NS/040/25 (1634)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the citty and liberties of Westminster

    The humble peticion of Bowland Hodgton.

    Humbly sheweth

    That your petitioner living at the signe of the Grashopper, tenant (unto one Thomas Happer a joyner who for 30tie yeares past hath lived in good name and fame at Longe Acre in the parish of Saint Martins) for that house of the said Happers there, in which your petitioner hath lived for the space of two yeares past and victualled in the same, by licence graunted, by your good worships to the said Happer.

    Now, that your worships or some of yow takeing consideracion, and hearing that Happer was a joyner did latelie call in the said licence, although the same house continued an auncyent victualling house, for 16 yeares last past.

    And your petitioner further sheweth that the said Happer is a man aged 68 yeares and past his trade and the rent of the said house the onlie maintenance hee hath left him. And your petitioner is one that hath been bredd up in victualling and hath no trade at all; but hath lately laid out his whole estate in the said house, and hath allwaies hitherto demeaned himselfe well and honestlie

    May it therefore please your worships to take the premisses into your consideracion and to graunt a licence to your petitioner for victualling in the said house, that thereby old Happer may the better bee susteyned, and your petitioner be alwaies bound (as in dutie bound hee is) to pray for all your worships healths and happines.


    [pro...?] Bowland Hodgton de Longeacre in parochia Sancti Martini in Campis [illegible] xx libris Willelmus Avery de parochia Sancti [Bartholomaei?] Magni [Lond?] [illegible] x libris Thomas Gibbes de Westminster [glover?] [illegible] x libris

    Per [illegible] Willelmum Griffith armiger

    Ad [requisicionem Master Phillipps?]

    Symon Davis. WJ/SR/NS/040/26 (1634)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the citty and liberties of Westminster.

    The humble peticion of Symon Davis.

    Sheweth that a gentlewoman belonging to the Queenes majestie gave 10 pounds with your peticioner and 3 suites of apparell and a cloake and bound him apprentice with one Duncan Manto cordweyner now dwelling in the Covent Garden for the terme of 7 yeares whereof 5 yeares and a halfe were expired at Michaelmas. And in all that time the said Manto your petitioners maister never taught your petitioner his trade, but continually kept him back from the same alleadging that hee was uncapeable thereof. And about Whistontide last turnd your petitioner out of his service without either money in his purse or clothes to his back, and soe hee was and is exposed to much distresse and misery.

    Forasmuch as your petitioner is capeable to learne the said trade as will sufficiently be proved to your worships and for that his said master hath unjustly turned him out of his service neither intending to teach him his trade, or to restore any of the said 10 pounds soe by him received which is like to tend to your petitioners utter undoing: hee being a poore young man and destitute both of meanes and freindes.

    Your petitioners humble suite therefore is that your worships wilbe pleased to send for his said master Manto before you, and either enjoyne him to take your petitioner againe and teach him his trade, or to restore soe much of the said 10 pounds to another who will undertake to performe the same as your worships in your grave wisdomes shall think requisit

    And hee shalbe daily bound to pray for your worships

    The waits appointed for the city of Westminster. WJ/SR/NS/041/19 (1635)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the cittie and liberties of Westminster.

    The humble peticion of the paratextloud musique called the waytes appointed for the cittie and liberties of Westminster.

    Humblie shewing, that James Angell a musitian with some companie as hee gathers together; doe without anie authoritie plaie at on the lowde instrumentes and are taken for the waytes of this libertie whereby they gett the rewardes and gratuities which is intended to your petitioners for theire great paines and service paratextespecially in the night time and so delude and deceive your petitioners to theire great prejudice and wrong; and albeit hee the said Angell hath bin bound over to the sessions for the same; hee saith he doth and will plaie.

    Your petitioners doe therefore humbly beseech your worshipps to vouchsafe to order the said Angell to give bond not to offend in this kind; or elles to contynue him bound to the next sessions that he transgresse not the priviledges of this jurisdicton

    And the petitioners shall ever praie etc.

    John Phillips, prisoner in the house of correction. WJ/SR/NS/041/20 (1635)

    To the right worshipfull and others the justices of peace within the citty of Westminster and liberties thereof

    The humble petition of John Phillips prisoner in the house of correction for the said liberty

    Most humblie shewing that having indured long and hard imprisonment in other places, hathe lastly remayned in this place a yeare in hard and sore labour and had before this time been famished with hunger and colde [illegible] had not the master of this house relieved him. Hee having no meanes nor freinds that are able to help or succour him in this his lamentable and distressed estate; and being committed hither by justice Griffith and no proofe to bee duely made for what hee is accused for. And therefore most humblie prayeth

    That yt may please your worships (in Christian pitty) to take some order for his discharge and liberty that hee may in his vocation and calling, being a seafaring man live in the feare of God as hee ought to doe, or at least to allowe him some maynteynance to keep him like a Christian. And hee will dayly pray etc

    Nathaniell Adcock, constable of St Martins. WJ/SR/NS/041/21 (1635)

    To the right worshipful the justices of peace for the citty and liberties of Westminster.

    The humble peticion of Nathaniell Adcock constable of Saint Martins.

    Sheweth: that it pleased the right honourable the Lord Keeper at the instance of the whole neighbourhood in and about the burse to graunt forth a speciall supplicavit against one Frauncis Floyd whereupon a warrant was graunted by Master Jones for apprehending of the said Floyd which miscarried in the handes of a constable. Since which tyme (may it please your worships) the said Floyd came with a woman into the house of Master Hutchinson, (the Lyon taverne) and there committed such outrages and misdemenours as your petitioner was sent for to preserve the peace, and being carryed by him, before Master Dickson he tooke Clarke a marshalls man and one other to be bound for Floyds appearance this sessions.

    And whereas Floyds sword upon the said misdemenor was by your petitioner taken from him and left in the Lyon taverne with direccion that if Floyd came after for it in person it should be delivered him, which Floyd never did; yet (by Clark the marshalls man) arrested your petitioner for his sword and there stands nonsuited.

    Your petitioner most humbly beseecheth your worships to be pleased to certefy this behaviour of Floyds to the Lord Keeper, who thereupon may be (as in justice he will) renewe the supplicavit

    And your petitioner will ever pray etc

    John Thompson. WJ/SR/NS/041/22 (1635)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the cittie of Westminster and liberties thereof.

    The humble peticion of John Thompson.

    Humblie shewing. That your peticioner hath lived in this cittie of Westminster about two yeres at Michalmas last, and at his first comeing did paie to the poore ii shillings per annum according to the rate his predecessor in the same howse was assessed.

    That the next assessment following your petitioner was raised to iiii shillings per annum which hee willing paid and was and is very well contented to contynue the same: but this last assessment hee was raised to viii shillings a yeare, being arate above his abilitie to pay, and above the rate his neighbours of his ranck and qualitie are assessed to pay

    That inasmuch as hee is soe much taxed beyond his neighbours and his abilitie, your worships wilbe pleased to give order that the booke of assessment maie be perused and that hee maie not suffer and pay more then such as be of his condicion estate and qualitie and he shall not onely contynue the same most willingly but ever pray for your worships.

    Jane Dowton. WJ/SR/NS/041/23 (1635)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the citty and liberties of Westminster

    The humble peticion of Jane Dowton.

    Sheweth. That your petitioner being servant with one Master Garland in the parish of Saint Martin in Feilds within this liberty. One Edward Atkinson liveing in the house with her, upon promise of marriage, had the use of her body, and shee is now great with childe by him: and hee refuseing to performe his promise of marriage: alledged that hee hath another wife which caused her to convent him before Sir William Ashton who hath bound over the said Atkinson with two suerties to answeare the same this sessions.

    Now forasmuch as your petitioner is utterly undone by the promises and inticementes of the said Atkinson, by whome shee is great with childe, and utterly destitute of any place wherein to harbour her, or any sustenance wherewith to releive her in this her extremity soe that shee is like most miserably to perish and starve in the streetes

    Your petitioner therefore humbly beseecheth your good worships that you wilbe pleased to enjoyne the said Atkinson to allow her some present maintenance, and to provide her lying in, and to give security to the parish where shee shalbe delivered for the discharge thereof.

    And shee (as in duty bound) shall daily pray for your worships

    Leonard Braford, victualler. WJ/SR/NS/041/24 (1635)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the cittie and liberties of Westminster assembled to this present quarter sessions

    The humble peticion of Leonard Braford victualler

    Humblie shewing that your peticioner hath been a licensed victualler in this parish the space of 22 yeares, where hee hath bourne many offices and done asmuch service to the towne for his time as any other.

    That your petitioner in all this time could never be taxed with the least disorder in his howse, hee haveing verie little utterance for his beere, other then that which he selleth within doores unto those that resort to his howse to eate fish; where alsoe poore labouring men and others upon fish daies have fish readie dressed at as reasonable rates as in any other place whatsoever

    The premisses considered, the petitioners humble suite is that your worships would be pleased still to continue him a licenced victualler; otherwise he shalbe unable to continue his trade of selling fish, wherein hee cheifely tradeth for the maintenance of himselfe and charge.

    And your petitioner shall daily pray for your worshipps

    Edmund Grove, joiner, of St Martin in the Fields. WJ/SR/NS/041/25 (1635)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace of the cittie and libertie of Westminster assembled at quarter session

    The humble peticion of Edmund Grove joyner late servant to Jeremy Kellett of Saint Martin in the Fields joyner.

    Humbly sheweth, that your petitioner in anno domini 1630 (being then well entred into the trade of a joyner) contracted with the said Jeremy Kellet to serve and dwell with him the terme of 4 yeares and an half yeare, from Midsomer in the said yeare; but the said Jeremy Kellett caused indentures of apprenticehood to bee drawne for the terme of seaven yeares, which your petitioner yielded to seale, upon condicion (as was agreed betweene them) that he might serve him no longer then the said 4 yeares and a halfe, and then bee free from his service; that the same day of sealing the said indentures, the said Jeremy Kellett by a writing under his hand and seale (extant) covenanted with your petitioner that your petitioner should, at the end of the said 4 yeares and an halfe, bee free from his service, to dispose of himselfe at his pleasure, without his lett or hindrance.

    So it is nevertheless (may it please your worshipps) that your petitioner having truly and faithfully served the said Jeremy Kellett the said terme of 4 yeares and an halfe, expired at Christmas last; the said Jeremy Kellet most injuriously, and contrary to his said covenant under his hand and seale, denied to lett your petitioner goe free from his service, and threatneth to make him serve the rest of the said terme of seaven yeares, or to make him serve it in Bridewell, and hath abused and offered violence to your poore petitioner his wife, his father and mother, without any just cause, and hath arrested your petitioner and his said father unjustly; and threatneth to lay 100 pounds to your petitioners charge for his book of accomptes, which your petitioner never had in his custody, but was kept by the said Jeremy Kellett under lock and key.

    Forasmuch as these proceedings against your petitioner are of meere spleene and revenge, for that the said Master Kellet cannot have longer service of your petitioner and for that your petitioner is and ought to bee free from the service of the said Jeremy Kellett, by force of his said covenant, both in justice and equity,

    Hee most humbly prayeth that the said Master Kellett may bee by your worships compelled to desist from his said troublesome and litigious courses, and make a generall release unto your petitioner of all right of service and other demands whatsoever;

    And your petitioner shall pray for your worships

    John Cleeves of St Clement Danes. WJ/SR/NS/041/26 (1635)

    To the honourable his majesties justices of the peace within the citie and liberties of Westminster.

    The humble peticion of John Cleeves within the parish of Saint Clements Danes.

    Shewinge that the house wherein your peticioner now liveth, beinge a large and faire house, and havinge constantlie for these thirtie yeares past bin kept by the inhabitantes thereof for enterteynement of dyett in the terme tymes aswell for such gentlemen that came usuallie to London and had their chambers still reserved for them in the house, as for others of verie worthie ranck and quallitie that resorted thither for their conveniencie; and your peticioner havinge married an ancient maid servant out of that house, did afterwardes (when the same house fell to bee lett) paie a great fine for a lease of 21 yeares therein, and laid out all or the greatest part of his estate in furniture and convenient necessaries for the enterteynement of persons of soe civill and worthie a condicion as lodge and resort thither; your said peticioner is now bound over to this sessions upon pretence that hee is a common victualler without licence, whereas he never uttered or sold one penniworth of beere out of his house, or to anie other then his lodgers and such countrie gentlemen as resort thither in the terme tymes and att meale tymes onlie as aforesaid;

    Hee humbly prayes that, in consideracion thereof, hee may bee discharged from his said recognizance, and receave the direccion of the court for prevencion of anie further charge and trouble hereafter.

    And hee shall ever pray etc.

    George Cole. WJ/SR/NS/041/27 (1635)

    To the right honorable Sir Thomas Richardson, knight Lord Cheife Justice of the Kings Bench.

    The humble peticion of George Cole.

    Most humbly sheweth that your petitioners kinswoman Anne Twyne about a twelvemonth since a servant in howse unto one Thomas Willis a scrivener dwelling in Westminster, was in the time of her service there gotten with child by one Rowland Williams then likewise a servant in howse unto the said Willis; Williams for this offence was by warrant brought before Master Heywood one of the justices of peace for Westminster and by him upon examinacion of the cause, lefte in the custodie of Percivall a constable with a mittimus to carry the said Williams to the prison of the Gatehowse.

    Willis prevailed with the constable not to carry him to prison but lefte him at libertie and by practise betweene them common baile were [hired?] for 5 shillings a peece, and by Percivall the constable the baile and the said Williams were brought before Master Griffith another justice of peace for Westminster the said constable having no warrant so to doe, and by Willis his meanes the said bayle were taken before Master Justice Griffith for Williams his appearance at the next sessions for Westminster which was about January last.

    The said Anne being neere her time of delivery and ready to perish in the streetes, your petitioner then being a constable did (by direction of some of the justices) procure her a lodging at one Alice Clarks a widdow in Westminster where the said Anne was delivered of the said child; and your petitioner by the churche= =wardens of the parrish most unjustly constrained to secure the parrish from the charge of the said child, Williams did not appeare at the sessions, but was by the said Willis his master conveyed away or by him suffered to departe out of his service, being his apprentice, into remote parts unknowne to your petitioner

    Willis was thereupon at the sessions 4o Aprilis last by order of the bench bound to appeare at the then next sessions because hee suffred the said Williams to depart his service, being charged with the begetting of the said bastard child, as by the [order?] annexed appeareth.

    But may it please your lordship, so it is, that the said Willis is discharged of his recognizance, and your petitioner compelled to pay for the childs nursing, [and?] is likely to continew to bee charged with the bringing up of the said child, contrary to all equity and good conscience, unles your good lordship wilbe pleased, to take some course for the relefe of your petitioner therein, being a poore man, and hath no meanes to susteine him and his family but his handie labour.

    May it therefore please your good lordship, in your honourable clemency to your oppressed petitioner, to give direction unto the justices of the said libertie, to take into theire due consideracions at the next sessions, your petitioners greivance herein, and to examine the truth of this cause, and upon their due examinacion to make such order herein, as to justice and equity shall apperteine, or otherwise to certifie your good lordship of the truth in this cause and theire proceedings therein:

    And your poore petitioner (as in duty bounden) shall alwaies pray for your good lordship etc:


    Decimo die Novembris 1634 I desire the justices to take it into theire con sideration it is a proper case for them Thomas Richardson

    Thomas Jenkinson. WJ/SR/NS/041/37 (1635)

    To the right worshipfull the Kinges majesties justices of peace within the cittie of Westminster and the liberties thereof

    The humble peticion of Thomas Jenkinson

    Sheweth that whereas your petitioner about November last was twelvemoneth did marry one Elizabeth Roper the relict of one Robert Roper cittizen and free cooke of London who kept victualing att the signe of the Flower de Luce in Sheere Lane untill he dyed

    After whose decease she the said Elizabeth in her widdowhood was duly licenced to victuall in the said howse as by the coppie of the recognizances hereunto annexed appeare.

    Now forasmuch as your petitioner of meere ignorance did neglect to renew the said licence since his intermarriage with the said Elizabeth and thereby hath incurred the penalty of thereof lawe in that case provided.

    May it please your worships the rather because of the certificate hereunto annexed and for that your said petitioner and wife are charged with children and have not byn bredd in any other course then that of victuallinge and have inhabited for divers yeares in one of the auncientes victualling howses within the said lane the premisses considered it is most humbly desired by your petitioner that he may be licenced to victuall in the said place and for his former errour in not becominge a suiter to your worships until now he most humbly submitteth himself unto your worships mercy and favour.

    And as duty bindes him shall dayly pray etc.

    Roger Flower of St Giles in the Fields, white baker. WJ/SR/NS/045/1 (1635)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties commicioners for the libertie of Westminster.

    The humble peticion of Roger Flower of Saint Gyles in the Feilds white baker.

    Humbly sheweth your worships that by the complaint of John Owen baker your peticioner is by 3: severall recog= nizaunces bound to appeare at the next sessions holden at Westminster which is onely done in malice and to undoe your peticioner beinge a yonge man and to hinder [him?] of his trade under the pretence that your peticioner maketh French breade liter then other

    Humbly craveth your worships to take your peticioners cause into your grave consideracions and to [reliuefe?] your peticioner from the malice of his adversary who seeketh his ruin and he as in duty bound shall dayly pray for your worships.


    wee whose names are subscribed who well knowe the peticioner doe beleife that he is prosecuted because he hath some customers which were somtime the prosecutors customers or his freindes and that the complaintes are malicious in testimony whereof wee have subscribed our names December 21th 1635.

    Wee whose names are subscribed are his customers and hitherto have found him faultlesse.

    • William Baldon
    • [S Bayton?]
    • [..kile?] Crow
    • Thomas Bageho
    • Henry Russell

    Robert Wiseman, Peter Mayber, James Wright, Jane Bell, Elizabeth Lightwood and Jane Bachelor and others of St Martin in the Fields. WJ/SR/NS/046/12 (1636)

    To the honourable and right worshipfull the justices of peace, and comitioners of the shoares.

    The humble peticion of Robert Wiseman, Peter Mayber, James Wright, Thomas [Inian?], Anthony Hewes, Jane Bell, Elizabeth Lightwood and Jane Bachelor widdowes and diverse other inhabitantes in Hartshorne Lane in the parish of Saint Martins in the Feildes.

    Whereas the old common shoare passing thorough the said lane is by the falling of earth and rubbish into it, soe stopped up that the water (wanting its former current and passage) floweth dayly into all our cellars and lower roomes to our great troble, and annoyance, by sending up daingerous and ill savours into all other partes of your petitioners dwellinges, soe that they are almost poysoned up therewith and wee having sondry times complayned to the forman of the jury for the shoares of this our greivance, he refuseth to veiwe the same, or doe any thing therein

    Your petitioners therfore humbly beseech your worships to give order for the clensing of the same or that it may be quite stopped up. And your petitioners shall ever pray etc.


    Wee whose names are hereunder written (being other inhabitants in the said lane) doe upon our owne knowledge certefie the truth hereof.

    • John Shittell constabell of the warde
    • Thomas Cholmley
    • Robert Fane
    • Petter Discher
    • George Smith
    • John Muffet
    • Francis Holte
    • Richard [Aroasmith?] [illegible]
    • Edward Platt
    • Henry Morris
    • John [Fishers?] mark
    • John Regnard
    • Thomas Reddall

    James Allane. WJ/SR/NS/048/31 (1637)

    To the right wirshipfull Justice [Houker?]

    Heir on pooure prisoner in Poulsttre Countter lyeth heir in measurie and in distresse that douet not [knou?] whatt dou for I am both freindles and comfortles I dou putt my hoales trust and confidence in your visdome heir I have sufered measurie and distres this mounth I am out of my [oune?] [conttra?] praying you only to do me right and justice I shall be bound to pray for you and all yours so long as I live

    • James Allane Servittur to Master Miller dwelling in Coven Garding

    Westminster the 28 of June 1637 yerres

    My maister he grants to let me outt if that I shall not trouble him any way att the quarter sessiouns at Weastmaister and to macke freindes with him and never to trouble him at the sessiouns and then he will release me

    James Allen. WJ/SR/NS/048/32 (1637)

    To his late master John Miller taylor

    The humble peticion of your unworthy servant James Allen.

    Wheras I stand committed by Sir George Whitmore knight upon your just complaynt made unto yo [his?] worship; for sundry factes and misdeameanoures done, and committed by me against you and my mistres; first, for goeinge to take up cloth, in your name, when I was dismissed your service, and my former neglect of your service, and also abuseinge you, and my mistress, in causeinge of you, and my mistress, to be bound over to the sessions, these, and other the like abuses; I ingeniously confesse to have done, and committed against you, and my mistress, so that my committment was deservedly inflicted upon me

    Wherefore your poore petitioner must humbly crave your favour, to be a meanes unto Sir George Whitmore for my enlargment, without which your favour I am likely to perish, and famish, in this miserable place

    And for which your noble favour herein I shalbe daily bound to pray etc

    • James Allane

    Witness per me

    • Francis Parsons
    • the marke of Richard Bower

    James Allen. WJ/SR/NS/048/33 (1637)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the citty and liberty of Westminster att this sessions now assembled.

    The humble peticion of James Allen.

    Humbly sheweth that your petitioner being covenanted servant unto one John Miller tayler the said Miller doth not onely donne your petitioner great wrong in not performing covenantes, but hath wrongfully accused your petitioner laying to his charge thinges most untrue whereby your petitioner hath endured a monethes imprisonment and whereby he is wrongfully discredited to his great prejudice

    Hee therefore most humbly beseecheth your worships to take the premisses into consideracion, and to cause the said Master Miller to give your petitioner such satisfaccion for his great wronges as to your worships shall seeme fitt to transport him into his native country of Scotland

    And he shall ever pray for your worships

    The said Miller caused your petitioner to sett his hand to a writing which he knoweth not what it was before he would release him out of prison which he humbly refereth to your worships consideracion.

    The overseers of the poor of St Clement Danes. WJ/SR/NS/051/31 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace assembled to this present quarter sessions.

    The humble peticion of the overseers for the poore of the parish of Saint Clement Daines

    Humblie sheweth that one William Janes cooke, about 5 yeares since tooke to wife one Denis, and about 3 yeares since the said William Janes travelled into Germany, leaving his said wife within the said parish, who about Michaelmas last, returned into England and found his wife to be with child, and the said Denis, before the midwife and divers other women, present at her labour, did confesse that one Edward Gill a barber was the true father of her child. And the said Gill did provide a nurse and paid for the keeping of the child at Saint Giles in the Feildes.

    Soe it is, that the said William Janes at Shrovetide last went beyond the seas, and his said wife shortly after died, after whose death Gill the reputed father was bound with good sureties to appeare at this quarter sessions, and he now giveth out, that he will leave the child upon the charge of Saint Clementes parish, because it was borne there.

    Now your petitioners most humble suite is, that your worshipps wilbe pleased, upon the appearance of the said Gill att this sessions, to take order, that the said parish may be discharged of the said child by the bond of good sureties or otherwise if the said Gill shall not appeare, that he and his former sureties may still stand bound untill the next quarter sessions.

    And your petitioners shalbe bound daily to pray for your worshipps.

    Isaac Jaynes and Mary his wife. WJ/SR/NS/051/32 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace for the libertie of Westminster

    The humble peticion of Isaac Jaynes and Mary his wife

    Sheweth that your peticioners have lyved in a poore howse in the parishe of Saint Clementes for the space of twoe yeares and upwards and paid to the scavenger there twoe shillinges for one yeare they beinge assessed to pay noe more (as by the bookes appeareth) scithence which tyme your petitioners have contynued the payement thereof unto one James Barrowes whoe received and had of your petitioners att severall tymes xviii pence for three quarters of a yeare, and when the said James Barrowes came for the last quarter hee demanded of your petitioners three shillinges which your petitioners refused to pay and beinge warned by the said Master Barrowes before Master Bray your petitioners offered him the said Barrowes vi pence yt beinge all that was due for the last quarter.

    Nowe for that there hath beene hertofore noe more paid by your petitioners predecessours the former tenantes for the howse wherein they dwell but twoe shillinges per annum and in regard that your petitioners have noe landes or meanes att all to meanes mayteyne themselves and eight children but by their hard laboure and industrie

    Your petitioners humblie pray that your worshipps will bee pleased to comiserate their poore estate and to give order that they may pay noe more then what hath beene heretofore usuallie paid as afforesaid which your petitioners have allwayes beene and are willinge to pay

    And your petitioners (as in duety bound) will ever pray etc

    William Robinson, a poor labouring man, and Joyce his wife. WJ/SR/NS/051/33 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of peace for the county of Middlesex and citty of Westminster and liberties thereof

    The humble peticion of William Robinson a poore labouringe man and Joyce his wife:

    Humbly sheweth that your petitioners havinge dwelt in the parish of Saint Clementes theis 13 yeres and for the space of 3 yeres last past or there aboutes in a house neere Boswell Court be longinge to Sergeant Powell, duringe which tyme your petitioners have duly paied their rent of 4 pounds per annum

    But soe it is maie it please your worships that the said Sergeant Powell without any just cause or lawfull warninge to your petitioners given: did aboute 6 weekes since, when your petitioners were abroade about their affaires, enter into your petitioners said house and dispossesse them there of and till this tyme hath lefte them harbourlesse and deteyneth many necessaryes from your petitioners and 5 shillings which your petitioners wife lefte there under her beddes head all which cruellty tendeth to the utter ruine and impoverishinge of your petitioners beinge lefte harbourles and comfortlesse,

    Humbly desireth your [illegible] good worships to take into your serious consideracions the miserable and destressed estate of your forlorne petitioners and for there releife herein soe to order that the said Sergeant Powell maie setle your petitioners in their former dwellinge againe or in some other his tenementes or els that the overseers of the parish maie soe provide for your petitioners releife and lodginge here in [illegible] (beinge fallen in greate want) and they shall daylie pray etc:

    Joane Johnson, the relict of John Johnson deceased. WJ/SR/NS/051/34 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of peace and quorum for the cittie and liberties of Westminster now assembled:

    The humble peticion of Joane Johnson, the late wife and relict of John Johnson deceased

    Humbly sheweth

    That about Michalemas last your petitioner bound her sonne an apprentice unto John Thompson a scrivener in Tuthill Streete in Westminster, and gave with him 10 pounds and double apparrell, but about a quarter of a yeare afterwardes, the said Thompson (without any cause or offence), sent her said sonne home to her againe, and yet doth unconscionably deteyneth the said 10 pounds in his handes, albeit hee hath often bene demaunded the same.

    Now forasmuch as her said sonne is a fatherles child, and that this 10 pounds is most of his porcion and for his putting forth apprentice to some other, who for want thereof much looseth his tyme and education, she therefore most humbly beseecheth your worships, to bee pleased to require the said Thompson to come before your worships, and upon examining the truth of the cause to order him forth with to restore her money backe againe.

    And shee shall daily pray for your worships etc.


    Warrant graunted

    Anne Wornam, wife of Michaell Wornam of St Martins in the fields. WJ/SR/NS/051/35 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull the justices of peace for the libertye of Westminster.

    The humble petition of Anne Wornam the wife of Michaell Wornam of Saho in Saint Martins parish in the feilds

    Humbly sheweth that your peticioner haveing lived in the house of one Goodman Sheppardes att Sahoe and after agreement and satisfaction made by your peticioner unto the said Sheppard and his wife for the time shee had remained there your peticioner goeing to remoove her said goods to another house shee had taken in the said Sahoe the said Sheppards wife would not suffer her peaceablye to carrye out her said goodes, but abused your peticioner, giveing her many punshes upon her brests with both her fists insomuch as your peticioner cryed out for help, whereupon the said Sheppards wife, violently flew (againe) upon your peticioner throwing her downe over a box which hurt your peticioners back now your peticioner finding her self very ill of the said punches, made her speedye repaire to one Robert Read a bonesetter asking his advise and shewing him the said hurts shee had received of her brests the bonesetter telling your peticioner that the sayd Sheppards wife had bent your peticioners brest bone and bruised her [bloud?] bowle and he is and wilbe readye to take oathe upon the same, besides your peticioner hath two witnesses one William Moore and Aves Wright by name that are readye to testefye of the said wrong your peticioner hath received of which your peticioner hath remained very ill ever since being a fortnight to the great prejudice and hindrance of your poore petitioner

    Your petitioner therefore humblye beseecheth this right worshipfull bench to take the premisses into your noble consideracion your peticioner haveing three small children and charged to have a keeper both to looke to her self and children her husband being a very poore man and hath nothing but what he getteth by his hard labour and to order the said Sheppard or his wife to give satisfaction unto your peticioner for her said wrongs what you in your grave wisdomes shall thinke fitt

    And your peticioner as in dutye bound shall pray for your good worships health and prosperityes in this life, and etc

    Sarah Goff, a poor creature. WJ/SR/NS/051/36 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull the justices assembled at the sessions Westminster.

    The humble peticion of Sarah Goff a poore chreature Most humbly sheweth unto your worshipps that shee is utterly undone by the unjust dealings of Abraham Hasellwood, whoe came to her as a widdower pretended marriage with her, and soe by his unjust meanes gott her with cheild, and shee was delivered twelve weekes since, and shee and the poore inphant have bene ever since without meanes or maintenance from him or any other.

    Wherefore shee humbly beseecheth your worshipps to have compassion upon shee and the poore inphant that are in want and missery and either to cause him to marry the petitioner, or at least to allowe maintenance for shee and hers that hee hath soe brought to missery.

    And your petitioner will ever pray for your worshippes prosperityes.

    William Newcum. WJ/SR/NS/051/37 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the bench.

    The humble peticion of William Newcum

    Sheweth that there is due unto your peticoner from one William Dent a cooke, for his wages the summe of three poundes or thereaboutes and that your peticioner hath often demaunded the same yet the said Dent refuseth to pay him although he the said Dent turnd your petitioner out of doores upon a very short or noe warninge

    Whereupon your petitioner repayred to the worshipfull Master Justice Howard for reliefe, who was pleased to graunt his warrant to cause the said Dent to shew cause why he did not satisfie your petitioner his said wages.

    That your peticioner delivered the said warrant to Master Hooper the constable to serve the same, yet the said Master Hooper keepeth the said warrant and will not serve it (though he might doe it every day) and soe your petitioner restes still unsatisfied to his great losse and hinderance

    He therefore humbly intreateth your worshipps to take the premisses into your charitable consideracions and to give direccions therin for your petitioneres reliefe as to your worshipps shall seeme fitt.

    And he as in dutye bound shall dayly pray etc


    Thexaminacion of the contentes of this peticion is referred to Master Hulbert to determine.

    John Wilde. WJ/SR/NS/051/38 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace assembled to this present quarter sessions

    The humble peticion of John Wilde

    Humblie sheweth

    That your petitioner is a poore man and hath a greate charge of wife and children, and hath susteined verie greate hindrance by the late visitacion wherewith his owne howse was visited, and haveing taken a howse in the greate almerie which hath been an auntient victualling howse

    His most humble suite is that your worshipps wilbe pleased to graunt him a licence to victuall in his said dwelling howse for the maintenance of himselfe and charge.

    And he shalbe bound daily to pray etc.

    Thomas Serjeant, blacksmith. WJ/SR/NS/051/39 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull his majesties justices of the peace assembled to this present quarter sessions.

    The humble peticion of Thomas Serjeant blacksmith

    Humblie sheweth that Margarett the wife of Phillipp Munn blacksmith is a woman of a verie lewde disposicion and misdemeanor for before her intermariage with the said Munn shee lived incontinently with a servant of hers, whome shee would have constrained to have married her, and after his departing from her shee writt unto him, that if he would not marry her shee would lay felony to his charge.

    The said Margarett about 6 yeares since pretending a debt to be owing unto her from a person then gone to the Indies shee by some indirect meanes obteined 3 moneths pay for the same person from the Indian Company, shee then affirming herselfe to be his wife, but afterwardes her basenes being discovered shee procured another woman to take upon her to be the same parties wife, who obtained 2 moneths pay more from the said company; all which and many other thinges your petitioner can sufficiently prove by sufficient neighbours.

    The premisses considered, and in regard the said Margarett is verie desperate in her swearing and hath indicted your petitioner out of meere malice your petitioners most humble suite is, that theis evidences being brought against her you would take the same into your grave consideracions

    And she your petitioner shall pray etc

    William Terryn. WJ/SR/NS/051/40 (1638)

    To the right worshipful the justices of peace for the citty and liberty of Westminster.

    The humble peticion of William Terryn.

    Sheweth: that your petitioner was prest out of this place to Ostend for a souldier where he [illegible] served under the comaund of Sir John Ogle knight and received many hurtes and wounds to the effusion of his bloud so that now in his old age being past his labour he is ready to perish for want.

    Most humbly therefore he beseecheth your worships to provide for him some annuall releife according to the lawe made for maymed souldiers:

    And he will ever pray for your worships.

    Thomas Allen and Marie his wife. WJ/SR/NS/051/41 (1638)

    To the right worshipful the justices and others in comission for the county of Middlesex, and Westminster.

    The humble petition of Thomas Allen and Marie his wife:

    Shewing, that wheras your petitioners haveing suffred imprisonment, and being bayld forth before justice Hooker, for some aspercions and accusacions wrongfullie layd unto them, wherby they have suffered much messerie haveing 3 small chilldren, that were redy to perish during their imprisonment, had not their neighbors forth of their compassione re leived them, your petitioner haveing allwaies demeand and behaved him selfe just and honest amoungst his nebors in the parish they lived in, and never being taxed concerning any such crime haveing lived their this 30 yeares and upwardes, as may appeare by acertificate under some of their neighbors handes appeareth here unto anexed

    Your petitioners most humble beseecheth your worships to comiseret ther poore estate and that you would bee pleased they might cleere there innocencie, and bee re leased: to cleere there bayle and they with there poore children will dayly praie etc.

    John Wells and Elizabeth his wife. WJ/SR/NS/051/43 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull John Glynn esquire and the rest of his majesties justices of the peace for the citty and lyberties of Westminster.

    The humble peticion of John Wells and Elizabeth his wife.

    Humbly shewe:

    That your petitioners have heretofore lived in good fashion but through badd debtors and other crosses is become poore who hath from time to time paid scott and lott in this parishe and lived in the same 40: yeares or thereaboutes, and now by reason of their age, poverty and weaknes, are not able to followe their labors as formerly they have done.

    Wherefore your petitioners humblie beseech your worships for Godes cause to take their age, povertie, and weakenes into your grave consideracions to be pleased to graunt them a license for victuallinge towardes their mainetenance and releife they being past labour as aforesaid, or ells your petitioners shall perishe, being of the age of 60tie yeares past,

    And your poore aged petitioners will ever pray etc.

    Isaack Mills. WJ/SR/NS/051/45 (1638)

    To the right worshipfull the justices assembled at the quarter sessions Westminster.

    The humble peticion of Isaack Mills

    Most humbly sheweth, that hee lodginge one [...moneth?] in his howse that was a servaunt and groome to Sir Henry Jarmon, hee behaved himselfe honestly soe long as hee aboaded in the petitioners howse, and beeing taxed upon suspicion of felloney, hee was ymprisoned in the Gatehowse and the petitioner to prison for harbouringe of him.

    And soe it is, that the party is freed and sett at liberty and the petitioner sent a againe to the Gatehowse, as a stragling man, soe that your petitioner doth innocently suffer upon misinformacion to your worshipps, for it appeares by the annexed certifficate that your petitioner is a howse keeper in Saint Martin in the Feildes and payes scott and lott and a releever of the poore here.

    Wherefore hee doth prostrate himselfe to your worshipps consideracion well knoweing that ites not your worshipps meaneinge that hee should suffer innocently ymprisonment but to be released.

    And your petitioner will ever pray for your worshipps prosperity.