The city of Norwich, chapter 31: Of the city in the time of King Charles II

Pages 403-421

An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 3, the History of the City and County of Norwich, Part I. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1806.

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On the 5th of May, 1660, the State's arms, which hung in the council chamber, were taken down, and ordered to be altered by the court; and on Thursday the 10th day of the same month, King Charles the Second was solemnly proclaimed here, which occasioned such joy, that there were continual bonfires, feastings, and such like, till Saturday night following.

Thursday, May 24th, was a general thanksgiving throughout the city, for the restoration of his Majesty and royal family, and of the ancient government both in church and state.

Horatio Townesend was made lord lieutenant of Norfolk and Norwich.

On the 25th of June, it was resolved in court, to seal an instrument of resignation of the fee farm of the city, which they had purchased of the State in 1650, it being 132l. 18s. 3d. a year; and to make a Voluntary gift to his Majesty of a thousand pounds in gold, as a testimony of their loyalty; and the mayor, the sheriffs, Mr. Jay, Man, Bendish, Norris, Howard, and the town-clerk, went up with the instrument, the free-gift, and a congratulatory address, all which they presented to his Majesty July 24, who gave them a gracious reception, and conferred the honour of knighthood on Joseph Paine, Esq. (fn. 1) then mayor, and Tho. Rant, Esq. one of their representatives in parliament; and giving his hand to the whole company, he promised the city his constant favour and protection.

Mr. George Steward, one of the sheriffs, refusing to attend the mayor to the cathedral, was sent for by a messenger to answer the same at the council table: and in Lent, by express order of the Council, some aldermen not duly elected were displaced, viz. Will. Davy, Esq. Will. Rye, John Andrews, Rob. Allen, and Tho. Ashwell, and at the same time were restored and chosen, John Croshold, Mathew Sotherton, Augustine Briggs, Tho. Wiss, Rob. Bendish, and Ric. Coldham.

Aug. 7, John Crofts, D. D. was installed dean, and the pulpit being placed on the north side of the upper end of the quire, where it now [1742] stands, he preached thereon the 19th.

Aug. 29, the city having sent a letter to the Right Honourable Hen. Howard, son to the late Earl of Arundel, acknowledging the many favours of his ancestors, and his own particular favour conferred upon them, in introducing them to his Majesty, and attending there as one of them, this day received an answer, assuring them that on all occasions he should take satisfaction in doing the city, or any particular member thereof, all the service he could, being ready at all times to stand up in their behalf for the city's good.

Sept. 20, the soldiers at Norwich were all disbanded, to the great satisfaction of the city and country.

Oct. 13, came two letters from the Council, commanding them to act by their charters as heretofore, upon which, on the death of alderman Tho. Johnson, John Osborn, who was formerly alderman of St. Giles's ward, was restored; and on the death of alderman Rob. Mingay, Mathew Sotherton, who was ejected for loyalty, was restored.

Jan. 9, Alderman Barnham informed the court, that the Earl of Arundel was restored to be Duke of Norfolk, upon which orders were issued to every parish to ring the bells, "to testifye this cities rejoycing for the same, out of their respect to that noble family."

Jan. 6, a great insurrection was made in London, by the Quakers, Anabaptists, and Fifth Monarchy-men, who intended the subversion of the King and government, but were happily suppressed, for which, publick thanks were given on Sunday, Jan. 13, in all churches in this city.

Jan. 16, the Mayor, Sheriff Briggs, and others, treated with the dean and chapter, in order to settle all affairs between them amicably.

In 1661, Apr. 23, the King was crowned at Westminster;

" St. George's day for ever be renowned, On which our royal Sovereign was crown'd."

May 21, the city petitioned for a new charter, and was answered it should be granted.

Aug. 17, Dr. Edw. Reynolds, Lord Bishop of Norwich, came first to this city, and preached in his cathedral the 25th, from Hebrews 3, v. 21.

Aug. 28, was a dispute between the city and sheriffs, about the fee farm.

Jan. 7, all acts of assembly made since 1640 were openly examined, and all that were declared void, had the word "renounced" wrote over them. An act was also now made concerning Norwich stuffs. (fn. 2)

In 1662, the Right Honourable Hen. Howard, at his coming to town, gave the city 70l. The plagne was now here, but did not come to any height.

The King, by commission, impowered the principal gentlemen of the county to execute the powers expressed in the act, for the regulating and well governing of corporations, deeming it expedient for the publick safety; and accordingly, on the 24th of July, Edm. Burman, Tho. Toft, Will. Barnham, and Adrian Parmenter were removed from the office of aldermen, by an instrument of that date, signed by Tounsend, Tho. Richardson, John Knevet, Charles Mordaunt, Francis Corie, James de Grey, William Gawdy, Roger Spelman, Philip Woodhouse, Ra. Hare, Rob. Kempe, Will. Doyly, Tho. Rant, E. Walpole, Tho. Tounshend, and Butts Bacon, the King's commissioners for that purpose, and James Long, Mat. Marcon, Henry Woods, and Henry Watts, were sworn in their places.

In 1663, Henry Duke of Norfolk, and the Honourable Henry Howard, dined in publick with the mayor on the gild-day, the last of which, presented the city with a bason and ewer worth 60l.

This year, the city charter, for a fine of 10l. was renewed; which, though it was voided by another charter of this King's, dated at Westminster 22d March in the 35th year of his reign, (fn. 3) and by another of King James the Second's, nevertheless by proclamation in 1688, Oct. 20, all corporations were restored to the same constitution they were in, in 1679, (fn. 4) and all such aldermen and common council-men, as were dead were to be supplied by new ones chosen according to their old charter, which was performed at Norwich Oct. 30, from which time the city always hath been, and still is, governed by this charter, the substance of which here follows,

" Whereas the city of Norwich is an ancient populous city and county by it's self, formerly incorporated by the name of the mayor, sheriffs, citizens, and commonalty of the city of Norwich, And as such, enjoyed many privileges and immunities granted them by former Kings, all which they now enjoy for the better support of the said city and augmentation of trades and manufactures, for the publick advantage and benefit of the kingdom of England; and the said mayor, sheriffs, citizens, and commonalty, having beseeched us to ratify and confirm to their corporation or body corporate all their ancient privileges, and immunities whatsoever, by them used, or to them granted heretofore, for the public good, and better government of the city aforesaid, and the more easy punishment of offenders and offences, we have thought fit to acquiesce in, and grant such their reasonable requests.

"And do therefore hereby grant to the said mayor, sheriffs, citizens, and commonalty, that they and their successours, shall freely have, use, and enjoy, all manner of "liberties, free customs, franchises, immunities, exemptions, quiet claims, and jurisdictions, belonging to the city, and also all and singular lands, tenements, marts, markets, fairs, customs, for cattle, liberties, privileges, and hereditaments whatever," which they ever had granted to them as a body corporate, by any of our predecessors Kings of England, by charters or letters patent, or which they ever used or enjoyed lawfully; "whither by grant, custom, or prescription, or any other way whatever, in as ample a manner as heretofore."

"And for the better and more certain use and exercise of such liberties, we do constitute John Croshold, Esq. mayor of the said city, Joseph Paine, Knt. Henry Watts, John Rayley, Barnard Church, John Man, John Salter, Christ. Jay, John Osborne, Rich. Wenman, Esqrs. Will. Tooke, Will. Heyward, Augustine Briggs, Thomas Wisse, Rob. Bendish, Rich. Coldham, John Laurence, Francis Norris, Henry Herne, James Long, Mat. Markham, Henry Wood, Hen. Watts, jun. and John Manser, aldermen, Francis Cory, Esq. recorder, Will. Watts, Esq. steward, and Thomas Balteston, common or (town) clerk; to exercise their several offices, as in time past.

"Further granting, that the mayor, recorder, and steward, for the time being, and all such aldermen as have born the office of mayor of the said city, shall be afterwards, so long as they continue aldermen, justices of the peace in the city and its county, with the same power as all other justices of the peace have, in other counties of this realm, with full power to enquire, hear, and determine by the oaths of law-. ful men of the said city and county, of all felonies, transgressions, regratings, and extortions, whatever, committed within thier jurisdictions; at which sessions, the mayor, recorder, or steward, or two of them shall be personally present, who shall also make enquiry, &c. of all conventicles or meetings of people, contrary to the King's peace, riots, &c. and to proceed thereupon according to the laws of the land.

"And every alderman that hath not been mayor, shall be justice of peace in that ward only, for which he was chosen alderman, and shall be sworn accordingly at his admission, before the mayor and aldermen, or at least two of them.

"And all the officers appointed by the charter shall take the oaths of obedience and supremacy, to be administered according to the laws and statutes of the realm.

"And all officers and their deputies, justices, &c. (except the justices for the several wards only) shall take all oaths heretofore usually taken, before such persons, as formerly accustomed to be done.

"And if any person or persons in any ward, elected on the common-council, or livery of the city, after 10 days notice of such his election, given him by the mayor, shall refuse to take the oaths belonging to his office before the mayor or his deputy, and refuse at the next assembly to show good and sufficient reason for so doing, to be allowed by the mayor, sheriff's, aldermen, and common council of the city, or the majority of them, they shall be compelled to pay such reasonable fines for their contempt, as the mayor, sheriffs, citizens, and commonalty, or the major part of them, shall set upon them, to be expended in maintaining the city walls, or any other publick uses, not exceeding 20l.

"And if any person elected, be discharged from the office he was elected to, by the majority of the assembly, then another shall be elected by the word in his room, at the Gild-hall, in like manner as his election was made.

"And the sheriffs of the city shall be elected in the following manner, viz. the mayor, sheriffs, and aldermen, for the time being, or the majority of them, from time to time yearly, at any time between the 24th day of June and the 1st of Sept. following, when and as often as they shall please to meet, shall choose and fix upon a fit and sufficient person for one of the succeeding sheriffs, (fn. 5) and the mayor shall summon the citizens, inhabiting in the city and county of the same, to appear at the Gild-hall every last Tuesday in August yearly, when they, or the majority of them, shall freely choose and fix upon, another fit and sufficient person for the other sheriff, for the succeeding year, which two persons so elected, on the 29th day of Sept. following, shall take the usual and ancient oath for the due execution of their office in the city and its county, for one whole year following, before the mayor of the city, or his deputy, and two or more justices of the peace, in the Gild-hall, unless sickness or other bodily infirmity hinder their coming thither; and in such a case, they shall take it before the mayor or his deputy and two other justices in any convenient place in the city, who shall exercise their office in all things as their predecessors did.

"And the aldermen for the said city shall be elected in the following manner, viz.

"When any of the 24 aldermen die, or for any reasonable cause are removed from the place of aldermen, (fn. 6) then the mayor or his deputy, in a convenient time after such death or removal, shall summon all the citizens inhabiting (fn. 7) (or inhabitants of) the great ward or wards for which such alderman or aldermen are to be chosen, and the majority of them so assembled shall choose and may elect one or more "of the most reputable and ablest citizens, being freemen of the said city," (fn. 8) to be alderman or aldermen in the place or places of them that are dead or removed. And any person so chosen, shall be sworn to the due execution of his office, before the mayor and aldermen, or such of them as shall be present at a court of majoralty, which shall be held in the council chamber of the city, in some convenient time after such choice; and after the oath taken, they shall be aldermen for life, (unless they be removed for a reasonable cause, (fn. 9) ) and if any refuse to serve, when elected, or if any alderman after he is sworn shall leave the city, and dwell elsewhere, and neglects his office as alderman, or shall not return within six months after notice given him in writing, under the hand and seal of the mayor for the time being, and resume his office, the mayor, sheriffs, aldermen, and commoncouncil, or the majority of them, in some publick assembly, shall fine him (any sum not exceeding 200l.) who shall so refuse to take upon him the execution of the office; and him who shall not return to exercise his office after the oath taken, any sum not exceeding 100l. which fines shall be laid out about repairing the walls, bridges, and other publick expenses of the city.

"And for the better government of the city, and of the several companies and trades therein, and for the better preventing and hindering of frauds and deceits in the manufactures of the city, and for the publick good of the realm, the mayor, sheriffs, citizens, and commonalty, and the major part of them, with the consent of the majority of the common council, at any publick assembly, may make laws, orders, and constitutions, for the better regulating moderating, and governing the citizens and separate companies of trades and occupations in the said city, which shall be binding under such penalties as shall be fixed, so that they be agreeable to truth and reason, and the common profit of the city of Norwich, and of the people resorting thither, with power to alter them, as occasion serves, and to levy the penalties upon the goods and chattels of such as offend against them, by distress, so that all such laws, orders, and constitutions, be not contrary to the statutes and laws of the realm.

"Furthermore it was granted, that the mayor and justices, or any three or more of them, (so that the mayor always be one,) shall have and hold, as they immemorially did, a court of equity, by bill or plaint, exhibited before them, by any citizens or inhabitants of the city, against any persons whatever, (so that any cause for relief in equity be made appear, and no remedy to be bad by common law, (fn. 10) ) for and concerning any action, cause, suit, or matter of difference, arising within the city, and to remove all such pleas before them, out of the court of pleas usually held for the said city, before the city sheriffs: the mayor, and justices, having full power to examine witnesses, take depositions, and make decrees in all such cases, according to law, equity, and good conscience, for the speedy dispatch of justice.

"The mayor and town-clerk, for the time being, may take recognizances in Norwich, (fn. 11) of the statute staple, in any sum or sums according to the statute, in as ample a form as the mayors of London, York, or Bristol.

"And according to the ancient custom of the city, and the oaths taken by the freemen, no freeman for the time to come, shall be partner or factor with any person that is not free of the city, either in buying, selling, bargaining for. or uttering any stuffs, stockings, or other commodities or merchandise, made, or wrought, in the city or its suburbs.

"The sheriffs of the city and its county for the time being, may hold their court of pleas in the Gild-hall for ever hereafter, and may there prosecute and try in the name of the mayor, sheriffs, citizens and commonalty of the said city, any plea, in any personal or mixed action, and any cause or matter, arising or happening, in the said city or county; and upon every recovery or judgment given in the sheriffs' court, they may by their mandate issued to any of their serjeants at mace, or other sworn officer of theirs, levy damage given, and costs of suit, by distress on the goods and chattels of such persons against whom judgment is passed; or if they have no goods or chattels in the city or county thereof then on those of their pledges or sureties, or may attach their bodies, or their pledges or sureties, by execution or mandate, to be served upon them by a serjeant or sworn sheriff's officer.

"Further, the King granted to the mayor, all goods and chattells of all such as were found to be felo de se,(or self murderers,) and all deodands, with paying any thing therefore, or rendering any account thereof.

"Confirming to the city, all their former charters and grants whatever, on payment of all their ancient yearly fee-farms, and sums of money which were heretofore usually yearly paid, in as ample a manner as they ever enjoyed them.

"Granting also, that the chancellor of England, treasurer, judges, commissioners, and all officers whatever for the time to come, shall on sight of these letters patent, (or charter,) or any constat or exemplification of the same, under the great seal of England, allow, and cause to be allowed to the mayor, sheriffs, citizens, and commonalty of the city of Norwich, for the time being, and their successours, all and singular the jurisdictions, liberties, privileges, franchises, powers, authorities, immunities, exemptions, emoluments, and other grants, without any writ of allowance, or any other confirmation, warrant, dispensation or toleration whatever, to be had or obtained for that purpose.

"Witness our self at Westm. 26 June, in the 15th year of our reign."

The 11th of July following, the King directed a letter to the mayor, &c. (fn. 12) telling them that on their complaint of the damage done to the city by the frequency of lotteries, puppet-plays, and other shews, resorting thither to the decay of trade, the meaner sort being diverted from, their labours, thereby tempted to a vain expense of time and money, to their great impoverishment, he had thought fit for the time to come, to authorise and impower the mayors, sheriffs, aldermen, &c. and their successours, " to limit and determine the stay and abode of all such lotteries, puppet plays, and shews, in that our city, as they shall judge fit and reasonable, that they may not, nor shall not remain any longer in that our city, than you shall permit and allow of, any licence or permission from us or the master of our revells, or any other power, liberty, matter, or thing to the contrary in any wise, notwithstanding, which we mean shall not extend or be construed to take away, or derogate from the power hereby given you"

The 5th Oct. on an inquisition taken, it was found, that Edward Nuttinge, Gent. some time since deceased, gave to the city library 5l. and ordered Prudence his wife to assure an annuity of 10l. a year, issuing out of lands and tenements of a reasonable value, to be yearly paid in the Gild-hall porch at Norwich, to the mayor, Sec. for the following use, viz. to every preacher of Norfolk and Suffolk that shall come to preach in the cathedral 2s. 6d.; to the poor people of St. Saviour's 40s. a year; to the minister of the parish, being a licensed preacher, 40s. yearly; (fn. 13) to a preacher to preach a sermon there yearly on the Sunday next following his burial day, 6s. 8d.; and the like sum to be distributed yearly after the sermon to the poor of the parish that attend there. He gave the city 50l. to be lent freely for ever to young beer brewers in Norwich, by 10l. a man, for three years, giving security; and the said Prudence, by the name of Prudence Bloyse, widow, did bequeath to Nic. Emmes and his heirs, a messuage, lands and tenements, in Hautbois-Parva in Norfolk, chargeable with the said annuity, which after came to Edward Osborne, who paid it yearly till 1651, and then ceased, for which reason he was prosecuted for all arrears, and for a conveyance to be made by him, to confirm the said settlement.

In 1664, there passed a decree by the commissioners of charitable uses, against Henry King of Norwich, Gent. to pay 470l. and the interest thereof for some years backward, it having been proved that for 26 years past he had received the said sum of Sir Thomas Hogan, Rich Catlyn, Esq. and other knights and gentlemen of the county and city, given by way of contribution to be laid out for buying impropriations within the city of Norwich, or near there, for the use and benefit of the several ministers and their successours, of the several parish churches in the city, for the increasing of their maintenance, all which the said Henry withheld, and still continued so to do.

In Sept. Lord Townsend, Lord Cornbury, and many more, came to town to compose the differences between the city, and the dean and chapter, and were grandly treated in publick by the mayor and court, and the city agreed to present the dean and chapter with 100l. towards repairing the damage done the church in the late troubles.

War was proclaimed here against the Dutch March 11, and many Dutch prisoners were confined here during the war, and 50 soldiers quartered to guard them.

Feb. 17, 1665, war was proclaimed against the French.

And now the corporation act and the act for unions in cities were passed, both which may be seen among the statutes. (fn. 14)

This year also, notwithstanding all imaginable precaution taken by the magistrates, the plague raged here exceedingly, as also at Yarmouth, (from whence it was brought hither,) and in many other places; there died in this city from Oct. 3, 1665, to Oct. 3, 1666, 3012, whereof of the plague 2251. From 22d Aug. to the 29th, being only one week, there died 203.

July 26, orders were sent by the court to all the parish clerks in this city "that they do not presume to ring any bell for any person, "other than such as shall die in the parish where they inhabited." It is to be wished that this order had been still obeyed, it being now customary for any friend or acquaintance to set out the bell of their own parish for their deceased friend, by which means oftentimes all the bells in the city ring at one time for the same person, and if not all, a great number, sufficient to make any stranger imagine the city to be in a very bad state of health, when perhaps it is a very good one; besides which, it is attended with an expense, not only quite unnecessary, but sometimes improper, it being usual to send gloves to all such persons as set out the several bells.

The plague continued in 1666, in which year there died 699, and the city having been at above 200l. a week charge for their poor, and making it appear that they had disbursed above 8000l. the county justices met at Wimondham, and agreed upon a letter to be copied and sent to every minister in the country, requesting them to publish it in their several churches, and the next day to collect in their parishes what they could gather for the city poor, and to return it to such person as the city deputed under their common seal to receive it; by which means, the poor was supported during the remaining time of the continuance of the distemper The market was removed to the north end of the Town Close by order of court, on the request of the country justices.

June 2, the inhabitants of Swanton Morley exhibited their accounts according to the will of William Small, Gent. and paid 4l. for 4 years at 20s. a year, to the mayor and recorder for the city poor.

John Vaughan, late of Saxthorp, clerk, (fn. 15) by will dated Sept. 16, 1666, (fn. 16) gave his houses and land in Aylesham to Ric. Curteis, on condition he paid to the city 300l. to be put out by the court to such poor young tradesmen, being free of the city, as the court should approve of, by 30l. a man, for eight years, free, on good security, no part of the money to be kept in hand by the court above one month, and none to be lent to any person that hath traded for himself for three years before. But all such persons, whose selves or parents were, within one month next before they were bound apprentices, inhabitants of the town of Saxthorp; and also all such persons who shall be sent by his executors and his heirs, and the vicar, churchwardens, and overseers of that town, to the BOYS-HOSPITAL in Norwich, and from thence bound out apprentices, shall be preferred before all others in borrowing and having the said sum or sums of 30l, apiece.

He gave 260l. to the said HOSPITAL, to be laid out by the court within a year and half after his decease, in a purchase to be employed in maintaining as many boys in the said hospital, as the clear produce will maintain, and then such boys shall be bound apprentices (according to the custom of the hospital) to such freemen as the court choose, to learn some trade of manufacture. The first boy to be put in by the court, the second by John Page of Saxthorp, Esq. and his heirs, the vicar, church-wardens and overseers of Saxthorp, or any three of them, by a nomination and presentation under their hands to the court, and this alternate course of nomination to remain for ever.

1667, Sir Peter Gleane of Hardwick, Knt. was made colonel of the city regiment.

Thursday the 19th Sept. was by the bishop's order kept as a publick day of thanksgiving in this city, for the great mercy of the plague's being ceased here; a sermon being ordered to be preached in every church.

In 1668, Aug. 15, died Sir Joseph Paine, Knt. aged 68, who gave 70l. to the court, 60l. thereof to bind out 12 poor boys for 7 years, 5l. to a person to teach them to read, write, and cast up accompts, 15s. to a minister appointed by the mayor and court to preach a sermon on the 19th day of Aug. after his decease, in the afternoon, in St. Gregory's church, from 1 Tim. 6 ch. 1 ver.; (fn. 17) 3s. to the clerk of St. Gregory's for his attendance; 3s. more to the townclerk; 2s. to the chamberlain; 2s. to the swordbearer; 3s. more to two marshals and the bridewell man, to see the 12 boys carry themselves soberly at church; 30s. for 12 psalters for them; 12s. for making their indentures; 6s. for the refreshment of the masters and their 12 apprentices after church; and 24s. for the refreshment of the mayor, court, and minister that preached, after the sermon. He left 200l. to be settled on the city to find the like sum of 70l. to be disposed as aforesaid every seventh year, on the 19th day of Aug. accounting from the first disposition after his death. The mayor and court to appoint the 12 boys on Lady day before every such seventh day of binding out, and nominate a person to teach them. And an assurance of land for this use was sealed 18 Nov. 1674, and it was agreed that there should be a boy taken out of every ward to be bound.

In 1669, the small pox raged exceedingly; it was reckoned that upwards of 300 families fell down in less than a fortnight.

Nic. Salter of Norwich, Gent. by will dated April 17, gave 50l. to St. Giles's hospital, to his cousin William, son of John Salter, Esq.; and his heirs, for ever, after his wife's decease, (fn. 18) all his houses, lands, and tenements, in Stonham Aspall in Suffolk, conditionally to pay on every first day of January in every seventh year, next following (Jan. 1, 1671) the sum of 36l. to the mayor and court of Norwich, &c.; or if the said Will. Salter had a desire to free the lands of the gift, then he should pay down 130l. to the city, which was done in 1694, and on the 8th of August the city took the money to their own use, and settled an estate for the payment of the 36l. every seventh year as follows, viz. 30l. to bind out six poor boys, to be nominated by the mayor, sheriffs, &c. to some trade in the city for seven years, 5l. to be paid to a person nominated by the court to take care of the youths for 12 months before they are bound, "that they may be instructed in the principles of the Protestant religion, and in the fear of the Lord, and also to read and to write, and to cast up accounts, that, so they may be blessed in their souls, as well as in their bodyes, and may be a blessing to their masters, and may for ever have cause to bless God for the fatherly care of the said mayor, &c. in their behalf;" 10s. to the minister that preaches a sermon at their binding out; 6s. for their indentures; 1s. for ringing for the sermon; and the other 3s. to the beadles for attending the mayor and court to the sermon, and keeping the boys in good order there, the boys to be always bound, and the sermon kept at St. Michael's at plea on the 1st of August.

An act of parliament was passed for repairing the haven and piers of Great Yarmouth, by laying a rate or duty upon all goods imported there, for a certain time, there being 8 commissioners appointed to see the money raised, properly employed, two of which to be named by the bailiffs, &c. of Yarmouth, two by the mayor, aldermen, and commons of Norwich, two by the justices of Norfolk, and two by the justices of Suffolk. (fn. 19)

June 30, was an assembly held, to consider of the letter sent from the lord mayor of London. to John Man, Esq. to acquaint him of his being elected sheriff of London. He was high sheriff of Norfolk from 1671, to 1672.

Oct. 4, "Mr. Noel du Faye had license to show a monstrous woman 7 foot and an half in stature."

Nov. 8, the King granted a pardon to the city for all transgressions in general, and in particular for their coining halfpence and farthings, by which they had forfeited their charters, all coinage being determined to belong to the King's prerogative, upon which all of them were called in.

In 1670, the Right Honourable the Lord Henry Howard Baron of Castle-rising, and the Honourable Hen. and Tho. Howard, Esqrs. his sons, were admitted to their freedom, and were discharged of all offices, and of part of the usual oath, this only being administered to them, "You shall swear that from this day forward you shall be good and true to our sovereign lord the King and his heirs, the Franchises and liberties of this City of Norwich, you shall maintain and sustain with your body and goods, so help you God."

This year the great contest between the mayor and court of aldermen, and the sheriffs of the city, concerning the yearly payment of the fee farm rent, to the King, after many hearings, was fully determined by the Barons of the Exchequer, that the city ought to pay that rent, and not the sheriffs; but upon this, the court finding themselves worsted by law, applied by petition to the King and council, and by great friends procured an order that the sheriffs should pay the fee farm rent, having the allowance formerly granted other sheriffs.

On the 5th of Jan. the Lord Hen. Howard presented the city with a noble mace of silver, gilt, as a testimony of his great love and regard to it; and had a letter of thanks under the common seal: he also presented them with a crimson velvet gown for the mayor to wear at the King's coming, and upon grand occasions.

In 1671, the King, Queen, Dukes of York, Monmouth, and Buckingham, with many other nobles, entered the city on Thursday Sept. 28, being met at Trowse Bridge, the utmost limits of the city that way, by the mayor, with all the regalia, sheriffs, aldermen, and common council, livery, and militia, new clothed in red, and by them conducted to the Duke's palace, where they lodged, and were magnificently entertained by the Lord Hen. Howard, who was afterwards, in 1672, created Earl of Norwich, and Duke of Norfolk. The next day the King went to the cathedral, and was sung into the church with an anthem, and when he had ended his devotion at the east end of the church, where he kneeled on the hard stone, he went to the Bishop's palace, and was there nobly entertained; and returning through the church, took coach at the west door, and came up to the Gild-hall in the market place, and there shewed himself to the people from the balcony, and viewed the trained bands drawn up in the market, whence coming down he rode to the New-hall, and was there feasted by the city, after which they went for Blickling; it cost the city above 900l.

At Blickling his Majesty knighted Mr. Henry Hobart, the eldest son of Sir John Hobart, Bart. who was then about 13 years old.

At even they rode to Oxnead, and supped and lodged at Sir Robert Paston's there.

The next morning the King went to Lord Townesend's at Rainham, where he lodged that night,

But the Queen returned to Norwich to the Lord Howard's, and staid till Sunday about 10 in the morning,

And then rode to the Lord Arlington's at Ewston in Suffolk.

When his Majesty was at the New-hall, he was earnest to have knighted the mayor, who as earnestly begged to be excused; but at the same time conferred the honour on that deserving physician

Dr. Thomas Browne, eldest son of John Browne of London, Gent. descended from a good family of that name in Cheshire; he was born Oct. 19, 1605, was educated at Pembroke college in Oxford, where he practised for some time; he accompanied his father-in-law, Sir Tho. Dutton, into Ireland, and after travelled to Montpelier and Padua, was made doctor of physick at Leyden, incorporated at Oxford 1637: by the persuasion of Mr. Tho. Lushington, his former tutor, he came to Norwich, and practised with great success; in 1642, he published that admirable treatise, intituled, Religio Medici; afterwards, about 1646, his Vulgar Errors, a book so well known that it needs no commendation; in 1658, his Hydriotaphia, or, a Discourse of Urn-burial, &c. he was made honorary fellow of the college of physicians in London in 1665, and was knighted as before; this great man died at his house in Norwich (in which Dr. Howman now lives) on the 19th of Oct. anno 1682, in the 77th year of his age. and was buried in St. Peter's Mancroft, to which church I refer you for an account of his monument; he married Dorothy Mileham. His only surviving son

Edward Browne, M. D. president of the college of physicians, was also a person of eminent reputation in London, having seen the best part of Europe, France, Italy, High and Low Germany, Croatia, and Greece as far as Larissa; and visited the courts of the Emperor, France, Pope, and Grand Signior. (fn. 20)

In 1672, Mr. Nathaniel (brother of Mr. Edm. Cocke) of London, merchant, gave the city chamberlain 100l. to be freely lent to five honest poor weavers, housekeepers and freemen, without interest, they giving security for the repayment at three years end. He gave also 20l. to buy books for the library.

John Man, Esq, one of the aldermen of the city, being now highsheriff of the county, it was thought proper, in respect that the court bears to one of their brethren, that all the aldermen and sheriffs in their proper habits, should attend him to meet the judges at the assizes.

The Lord Hen. Howard being created Earl of Norwich, the court in regard to that noble family, who came to their palace here in November, agreed that the mayor, &c. should meet him out of St. Stephen's-gates in form, that all the bells should ring, the guns be fired, and the whole court wait upon him in order, in one hour after he was got to his palace.

In the act for raising his Majesty 1,238,750l. the county paid 3370l. 12s. and the city 180l.

In 1673, an extraordinary deep snow fell Febr. 24, and laid till Easter following, being seven weeks; and when it thawed, such a flood followed, that Hellesden, Trowse, and many other bridges received great damage.

In 1674, Mr. Elisha Philippo, soap-boiler, a Frenchman, was chosen high-sheriff of Norfolk, and carried out his office with much reputation.

In 1675, according to custom, the sheriffs, justices, and aldermen, where summoned to attend the corpse of Mrs. Mayoress to her interment, on Sept. 8, in the afternoon.

This year a ship came up the river to Conisford towers.

In 1677, on the gild-day, towards evening, justice Ric. Wenman, being bed-rid, and left alone with a candle to light him a pipe, fired his bed, and was burnt to death.

Christopher Jay being now dead, William Paston, Esq. eldest son to Robert Lord Paston, then Viscount, and afterwards Earl, of Yarmouth was proposed to succeed him, whom the different sectaries unanimously opposed, and set up Capt. Augustine Briggs in opposition to him, notwithstanding the captain utterly refused to stand; upon which, the said right honourable Col. Will. Paston, and the honourable Rob. Paston, his brother, were sworn freemen in the same manner as the Lord Howards; this angered the opposite party so, that to carry on their design, they gave some hundreds (who were free born) their freedom, to vote with them; for on the 9th of Jan. only, 330 were sworn freemen; and so both sides carried on their interest with great vigour: and though the Captain would not appear against the Colonel, but protested against it, yet they affirmed, not only to a great number of people, who out of love promised the captain they would be for him if he appeared himself, but told others, that he had granted to appear himself: moreover, before the election day, they had gained over the mayor, and most of the aldermen, to declare for the Captain. Now on the 18th of Feb. which was appointed for the election, both parties met in the market, the mayor leading up the Captain's company from the Newhall, but the Captain not appearing, Alderman Mark Cocket took upon him to ride for him; but upon the Captain's declaring against it, and the Colonel's appearing himself, he was elected by a majority of 1491 votes; after this, it was discovered that the greatest part of the aldermen's places were void in law, for want of such subscription as the law had prescribed; whereupon the freemen, according to custom when they met in assembly the week before Palm Sunday to choose common council men, took occasion to elect 11 new aldermen, voting off the rest, and re-electing the others; but the mayor would take no notice of it, and would not swear the new ones, though he had afterwards a mandate from the King so to do; upon receiving of which, he posted directly to London, to have the matter decided by his Majesty's council, where it was concluded that there must be a new choice, by reason, though the places were void, yet the election was not legal, because the freemen chose without any summons, and so on the 29th and 30th of April there was a new election, and all were re-elected but 7; those left out were, Mr. Rob. Hawes, and Tho. Thacker, who had been mayors, and Mr. Pain, Mr. Todd, Mr. Wrench, Mr. Wenman, and Mr. Wigget, who had been sheriffs; the next day, being May-day, Mr. Hugh Bokenham, one of the new aldermen withdrew, and so was not sworn then; and on the death of the recorder, Capt. Briggs, was, without any opposition, elected burgess in parliament for the city.

June 23, 1677, the will of Mrs. Eliz. Pendleton of Norwich, widow, was now first read in court, in which she gave all her houses in St. Stephen's, worth 27l. a year, and all her houses it St. Saviour's, worth 15l. to be employed by the magistrates of the city as follows, one half of the clear profits of those in St. Stephen's, to clad the poor and needy with winter garments, and the other half to bind out poor lads; the clear yearly profits of those in St. Saviour's to be lent out to young tradesmen, by 5l. a man for 7 years, free, and upon their single bond, which said money being repaid at 7 years end, each 5l. shall never be lent out again, but shall be freely given away by the mayor and court to such as they shall esteem objects of charity, as to ministers widows and children, and to decayed gentlemen of the city; she gave many sums to the poor, and the overplus of her personals to the girl's hospital.

In 1680, on the 3d of May, the common council voted off Francis Bacon, Esq. their recorder, and then elected Jo. Norris, Esq. their steward, recorder, and chose John Mingay, Esq. steward.

The well in the fishmarket was now made, and a pump put down.

A blazing star appeared in the west after sunset in December, the tail reached several degrees eastward, and it continued till the latter end of January.

The counterpart of the settlement of Mr. Roger Flynt, clerk, was sealed by the city, by which 10 acres and an half of land in Antingham were settled for the benefit of the poor of this city. In 1681, 4l. 10s. was received for the rent, and divided according to the settlement between the poor of St. Stephen's and St. Laurence's parishes. (fn. 21)

This year the Town-clerk was ordered to get a transcript of the part of Bishop Cosin's will, whereby the city may be benefited, by nominating to any scholarship in the University; and it appears from the book of benefactors, and other evidences that I have seen, that John Cosin Bishop of Durham, born in St. Andrew's parish in Norwich, was brought up at the free-school here, sent thence to Gonvile and Caius College, where he was fellow, being educated under the famous Dr. John Overal, afterwards Bishop of Norwich, to whom he was secretary, and domestick chaplain to Archbishop Neyle; A. 1624, he was prebendary of the 10th stall in Durham, after that archdeacon of the East-Riding of Yorkshire, then rector of Branspeth in the bishoprick of Durham, after that, master of Peter-house in Cambridge, vice-chancellor of the university, dean of Peterburgh, chaplain in ordinary to Charles I. and II. and lastly, after the sequestration and plunder of all he had, and 17 years exile for his loyalty, was consecrated Bishop of Durham, Dec. 2, 1660. He died at his lodgings in Pall-Mall, (after he had bestowed much wealth on pious and publick uses,) Jan. 15, 1671, aged 77, and was buried at Bishop's Ankland in his diocese, April 29, 1672, having settled a rent charge of 28l. per annum by his letters patent sealed as well with his palatinate as episcopal seal, issuing out of his lands and tenements in Great Chilton, in the county palatine of Durham, out of which he founded three scholarships of 20 nobles apiece for three boys born in Norwich, and taught in the publick gram mar school there, and these to be chosen as often as any place shall be void, by the master, with the consent of the fellows, or at least of the deans of the college; (fn. 22) and upon every vacancy, the master of Norwich school shall have notice of it, unless there be any admitted in the college before, and such as the master of the college shall think fit to be placed or chosen into those vacancies; and if there be none in the college that were born in Norwich, then those vacancies shall be supplied out of Norfolk, as Dr. Caius ordained in his fifth statute (fn. 23)

In 1681, the small pox carried off abundance of people.

March 10, his royal Highness James Duke of York came to the city, being invited thither; when he landed at Yarmouth as he came from Scotland, he was met by the magistrates in their formalities about 9 at night, at Bishop-gate, where the steward made a speech to him, which was taken well; from thence he was conducted to the New-hall, and feasted there; in the mean time, the great guns fired, the bells rang, bonfires were made, &c. he lodged that night at the Bishop's palace, and the next morning went for New-Market.

This year, "after the declaration had been published and read in churches by the King's order, addresses flowed in from all parts, approving the dissolution of the parliament, and in general, the King's whole conduct. Not content with thanking the King, these addresses were even filled with invectives against the house of commons, one of the addresses (that from Norwich, which ran the highest for the prerogative) being presented at the King's Bench as a publick libel by the grand jury of Middlesex, the court took no notice of it. The King received them all very graciously, and distinguished the bringers with particular marks of favour." (fn. 24) But this was not all, for out of an excessive torrent of loyalty

In 1682, at a quarterly assembly held Sept. 21, the mayor was requested to let it be put to vote whether the Charter should be surrendered to the King, which he condescended to, and 22 voted for keeping it, and 40 voted to surrender it; but it was so disagreeable a thing to the generality of the freemen, that they produced a petition, signed by above 900 citizens, desiring the magistrates and common council to keep their Liberties that they had intrusted them with, and not deliver them up; but notwithstanding all the freemen could do, the court being time servers, on the 11th of Nov. they surrendered their Charter, and with it all those liberties the freemen had trusted them with, in order to have another with greater liberties, (as was pretended,) but proved nothing but a pretence; for the new charter, (fn. 25) which was brought down April 10, 1683, and received, with great acclamations, ringing, bonfires, &c. had nothing more in it than their old one, but much less, for thereby the city was subjected to a very extraordinary limitation, the King reserving power to remove all such magistrates as he did not approve of, by his privy seal only: by which, it is evident, that the King became absolute in the city, "and by thus restoring its charters, effectually deprived it of its chiefest privileges," to use the words of Rapin (fn. 26) on the same occasion as to the charter of London.

This affair was brought about by Robert Paston Earl of Yarmouth, who was waited on at Osnead about it, the Lord Pasten being made recorder by this charter.

March 31, Mr. Mayor received a letter from the Earl of Yarmouth, that the new charter would be brought down April 10, about one in the afternoon, by his brothers, and it was resolved that the mayor and court, and waits shonld meet them at the foot of Eaton Bridge, the utmost extent of their county, and every church having five bells, had orders to cause them to be rung; a bonfire was made in the market, and a grand collation, &c. And soon after, the city sent up an address to his Majesty, which was delivered by Henry Earl of Arundel, who assured them of his Majesty's favour and protection.

On May 19, 1682, a company of French Protestants came from Ipswich to Onias Phillippo, who had hired a great house out of Pockthorp-gates, and employed them there; this occasioned a matiny, which came to that height, that the mob brake open one of their houses, and misused a woman so, that she died in two or three days after; the pretence was, that these people would underwork them; however the French that dwelt there were foreed to quit the street that night.

A comet appeared in August, and on the 3d of Feb. about 3 in the morning was a violent clap of thunder here and at Yarmouth, where the lightning fired the top of the spire, which was with difficulty quenched.

Dr. Thomas Browne died this year, of whom under St. Peter's Mancroft, where he is buried.

A boy about 16 years old, named Hipkin, condemned for felony, was reprieved by the judge; however, Allen the goaler, finding a great resort of people to see him, caused a gallows to be erected, set three several days for his execution; but diappointing them, they pulled down the gallows, and burnt them, brake his windows, and beat him; and if they had not been quelled by reading the proclamation, they had pulled down his house to the ground.

The poor being still discontented at the French which were left in the city, took occasion to assemble at the execution of Eliz. Brooks on the Castle-hill, and coming in a large body into the market place, declared that the French came to underwork them, and that they would then quit the city of them, and accordingly going to Mr. Barnham's in St. Andrew's parish, they pulled them and their goods out of theft houses, abused their persons, &c. till the trained bands were raised to appease them, when the principals were taken, and made to pay dear for their folly.

In 1683. died the right honourable Robert Earl and Viscount of Yarmouth, Baron of Paston, Lord Lieutenant of Norfolk and Norwich, and was buried at Oxnead; his funeral sermon was preached by John Hildeyard. L.L.D. commissary to the archdeacon of Norfolk, and rector of Cowston, it was published in qo. at London, and dedicated to Rebecca Countess Dowager of Yarmouth, whose chaplain he was, in which, at p. 27, we find this, "great was his love to the antient, loyall, and honourable corporation of Norwich, because the members of that body (generally speaking) loved the King, they found him their friend, and mauger the blasts of calumny, the new charter shall remain a token of it, he spared no cost nor pains, as themselves can witness, to make the world believe that he loved them, most of the tables in his house have been often spread together for their entertainment, and all his friends employed to bid them welcome, nay his very sleep was often broke to find out ways, how best to serve them, and he commended the care of the city, with his last breath, to all his best friends, and the blessing of God." Whatever the Doctor might think of it, the effects of the new charter now began to be too visible, Mr. Nic. Helwys was chosen mayor, and 11 common council, in room of those 11 of the 60 common council appointed by the charter, which were not qualified: but such choice was of no force till confirmed by the King, who sent a letter under the privy seal, dated at Windsor, May 17, signifying by the Earl of Arundel, that he approved of them, and the names of the two elected sheriffs were signified to the lord lieutenant, and that they were persons of loyalty, and therefore they desired his lordship to give his gracious Majesty information thereof, "in order to his approbation."

July 19, his Majesty's letters patent under the great seal of England, were read in open assembly, by which the right honourable William Earl of Yarmouth was impowered to appoint a deputy recorder for the city, who thereupon nominated under his hand and seal, John Warkehouse, Esq. to be his deputy, but the assembly declared this to be an infringement of the ancient liberties of the city, and even contrary to the new charter, and that the oath of recorder ministered to the Earl, was not the ancient oath taken by the former recorders of the city, but was drawn up by Dr. Hildeyard, against which the whole assembly protested, and appointed a committee to attend the Earl, to use their best endeavours to prevail with his Lordship to resign his recordership, that the city might proceed to elect a person into that office, Whereby the great concerns of the city might be transacted, justice duly administered, by holding sessions of the peace, &c. as heretofore; but the Earl insisting on his power to name a deputy by the royal consent, the city petitioned his Majesty for redress, but did not succeed, so that on April 1,

1684, John Warkehouse, Esq. was sworn deputy recorder, and an address was made to his lordship, excusing these proceedings, sealed with the common seal. (fn. 27)

And on the 20th of the same month, by another instrument under the said seal, (fn. 28) they acknowledged all favours he had conferred upon them, as the serving for one of their burgesses in frequent parliaments, the assisting them in the surrender of their old, and interceding with his Majesty for the new charter, his composing their differences as mediator, &c. beseeching him, in order to clear all scruples concerning the judicial power of his deputy, to obtain of his Majesty a full explanation of such power, as he pleases to confer on him. So entirely dependent did the new charter make the whole corporation.

For the benefactions of Augustine Briggs, Esq. whose will bears date Aug. 19, in this year, I refer you to the account under St. Peter's Mancroft.

On the 16th of February, 1684, died Charles the Second, and on the day following

James Duke of York was proclaimed King, by the title of James the Second.

Mayors and Sheriffs.

1660, Sir Jo. Paine, Knt. Elias Browne, died Oct. 12, Augustine Briggs, chosen, George Steward.
1661, John Osborne. Hen. Sidnor, Hen. Herne.
1662, Ric. Wenman. George Mirris or Mirrice, John Manser.
1663, John Croshold. Rob. Bendish, Tho. Thacker.
Francis Cory, Esq. recorder.
Will. Watts, Esq. steward.
Tho. Balteston, Gent. town-clerk.
1664, William Heyward, or Howard. Henry Watts, jun. Tho. Chickering.
1665, Mathew Marcon or Markham. James De-new a Frenchman, Fra. Norris died, John Richer chosen.
1666, Henry Wood. Henry Crowe, John Wigget.
1667, Tho. Wisse. Ric. Wenman, Jehosophat Davy.
1668, Rog. Hawys or Hawes. Isaac Decele or Disley, a Frenchman, Rowland Cockey.
1669, John Lawrence. John Wrench, Mark Cockey.
1670, Augustine Briggs. Will. Crowe, Adrian Paine.
1671, Tho. Thacker. Daniel Palmer, died March 24,
John Lowe, chosen in his stead.
John Toll, died Jan. 25,
Peter Wigget, chosen in his room.
1672, Rob. Bendish. John Leverington, Rob. Clayton, died Jan. 4.
Rob Freeman chosen Jan. 6.
1673, Henry Herne. John Dersley, Hugh Bokenham.
1674, Hen. Watts, jun. Robert and Thomas Cooke, brothers.
1675, John Manser. Will. Drake, John Todd.
1676, Tho. Chickering Will. Helwys, Will. Parmenter.
1677, John Richer. Jereniah Vinne or Vyn, Nic. Helwys.
Francis Bacon, Esq. recorder.
John Norris, Esq, steward.
1678. Jehosophat Davy. Henry Brady, Simon Wissiter.
1679, Henry Crowe. James Buckden or Brogden, Tho. Seaman.
1680, Rob. Freeman. Leonard Osborn, Francis Gardiner.
Francis Bacon, Esq. recorder, displaced.
John Norris, Esq. steward, made recorder.
John Mingay, Esq. steward.
1681, Hugh Bokenham. John Westhorp, Will. Salter.
1682, John Lowe. Philip Stebbing, Laurence Goodwin.
1683, Will. Helwys. John Lowe, Samuel Warkehouse.
1684, Nic. Helwys. Nic. Morley, Michael Beverley.
John Warkehouse, Esq. deputy recorder.

Burgesses in Parliament.

1660, Parl, at Westm. Will. Barnham, Esq. Tho. Rant, Esq. of Surrey House in this city, afterwards knighted by King Charles II.

1661, Ditto. Christopher Jay, alderman, Francis Corey, Esq. recorder, both died.

1677, Ditto. In Jay's place was chosen the honourable Will. Paston, Esq. eldest son of Robert Lord Paston, Viscount, and afterwards Earl of Yarmouth.

Ditto. In Corey's place, Augustine Briggs, alderman.

1678, Ditto. The two last were rechosen.

1679, Ditto. Rechosen again. Will. Paston being now Lord Paston.

1681, Parl. at Oxford. Rechosen again.


  • 1. He was also made colonel of the city regiment.
  • 2. Keble, 1202.
  • 3. Pro fine in Hanaperio vjl. xiijs. iiijd. F. North cs. per breve de privato sigillo. Pigot.
  • 4. Mr. Chapell, town-clerk, Nov. 10 1688, brought from London the charter of K. Charles II. and the surrender made of it, dated Sept. 29, 1682, which surrender being not inrolled, was cancelled by Sir Thomas Powis, Attorneygeneral. From the Book of Mayors, &c.
  • 5. When they have fixed on any person, there is a letter sent by the court yearly, to signify their choice, to the person they choose. Before this charter the sheriffs were yearly elected on the day of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary, viz. Sept. 8.
  • 6. See the late statute for electing aldermen, &c.
  • 7. Omnes cives inhabitantes.
  • 8. De dignioribus et magis sufficientibus civibus vel liberis hominibus de ci. vitate predictâ.
  • 9. Nisi causa rationabilis amotionis intervenerit.
  • 10. Unde causa equitatis relevabilis apparebit.
  • 11. Recognitiones statuti mercatorum.
  • 12. Lib. Rub. Civ. (Mingay,) dated at Whitehall, 11 July, 1663, signed, Charles Rex.
  • 13. Ao. 1719, there was 27l. in trustees hands of her gift, for which they then paid 22s. 8d. yearly to the minister and poor.
  • 14. Keble's Stat. fo. 1318, 1319.
  • 15. He died 11 Oct; and was buried at Saxthorp Oct. 13, 1669.
  • 16. He was buried in St. Gregories on that day.
  • 17. This is always to be the text at this occasion.
  • 18. Eleanor his wife was buried in the church of St. John Sepulcre at Berstreet, Dec. 22, 1671. Lib. Bnf. For acts passed in relation to Norwich, see Keble, fo. 1363, 1415.
  • 19. Ibid, 1364.
  • 20. Fasti Oxon. fo. 844, vol. ii.
  • 21. Cur. 22 Sept. 1680.
  • 22. "Cum consilio sociorum aut saltem Decanorum collegij."
  • 23. See Wood Ath. fo. 541. Walker's Suffering's, &c. part 2, fo. 58. History of his Life by Dr. Basier.
  • 24. Rapin by Tindal, oct. vol. xiv. p. 902.
  • 25. Indorsed. A perpetuity granted to the mayor, &c. dat. Westm. 22 Martij 35 Reg. per breve de privato sigillo. Pigot. pro fine in Hanaperio. vjl. xiijs. iiijd. F. North. Cs. Autog. in le Gildhall.
  • 26. Rapin, oct. vol. xiv. p. 320.
  • 27. Autog. pen. me.
  • 28. Ibid.