Friaries: Observant friars of Newark

A History of the County of Nottingham: Volume 2. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1910.

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'Friaries: Observant friars of Newark', in A History of the County of Nottingham: Volume 2, ed. William Page( London, 1910), British History Online [accessed 22 July 2024].

'Friaries: Observant friars of Newark', in A History of the County of Nottingham: Volume 2. Edited by William Page( London, 1910), British History Online, accessed July 22, 2024,

"Friaries: Observant friars of Newark". A History of the County of Nottingham: Volume 2. Ed. William Page(London, 1910), , British History Online. Web. 22 July 2024.


When Henry VII became a special patron of the reformed branch of the Franciscans termed Friars Observant, he founded several English houses, which were chiefly refoundations of original Franciscan establishments. But there appears to be no evidence that there was any house of Grey Friars at Newark prior to the days of that king. His founding of the Newark house of this severe order occurred about the year 1499. (fn. 1) By a codicil to his will, Henry VII in 1509 left £200 to the convent 'that by his succour and aid was newly begun in the town of Newark.' (fn. 2)

In the Dodsworth MSS. occurs the mention of 'Gabriel, fader of the Observant friers at Newark.' (fn. 3)

Among payments made by Henry VIII in 1538 there is entry of 40s. to Richard Lucas for 'bringing one Bonaventure a friar of Newark.' (fn. 4)

Early in 1539 Dr. London, who was the chief instrument of Henry VIII in the suppression of the friars, wrote asking for a commission from Cromwell to take the surrender of the friars at Newark. (fn. 5)

The ex-friar Richard Ingworth, Bishop of Dover, writing to Cromwell in March 1539 said that he had recently received 'to the king's use' twelve houses of friars, one of which was that of Newark; they were all poor, each house had a chalice of 6 to 10 oz., and those he had with him. (fn. 6)

Richard Andrewes, of Hailes, Gloucestershire, and Nicholas Temple were the recipients, in July 1543, of much monastic property in the Midlands: inter alia of the site, churchyard and certain gardens of the 'late house of Augustinian Friars' in Newark, Notts. (fn. 7)


  • 1. Coll. Anglo. Minorit. i, 211; ii, 39.
  • 2. Brown, Hist. of Newark, 42. There can be no doubt that this refers to the Observant Friary; owing to a misconception as to the word 'convent' there has been much idle local speculation as to the site of this convent and as to the order to which it belonged.
  • 3. Dods. MSS. (Bodl.), xcix, fol. 200.
  • 4. Arundel MSS. xcvii, fol. 28b.
  • 5. L. and P. Hen. VIII. xiv (1), 3.
  • 6. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xiv (1), 413.
  • 7. Pat. 35 Hen. VIII, pt. iii, m. 12. There is no other reference to any settlement of Austin Friars in Newark, and it seems clear that it is a slip. The seal attributed to the Austin Friars by Brown (Hist. of Newark, 63) is shown by its legend to be that of a secular cleric.