A Chronicle of England during the Reigns of the Tudors, from A.D. 1485 to 1559

By Charles Wriothesley, Windsor Herald.

Edited, from a MS. in the possession of Lieut-General Lord Henry H.M. Percy, K.C.B., V.C., F.R.G.S., by William Douglas Hamilton, F.S.A.
Printed for the Camden Society. 1875.

This excerpt covers the year of Sir Andrew Judde's mayoralty, 1550-1551.

You'll note that U is generally seen where we have a V sound and that I and Y are interchangeable.

A.D. 1550

This yeare, the vi of August, was one set on the pillory in Cheape, which was the millers seruaunt at Battlebridge, which had spoken sedicious wordes of the Duke of Somersett, sayinge that he had proclaymed himselfe Kinge of England in his country, wherefore by the Counselles commaundement he was set on the pillory and had both his eares cut of.

This yeare was a wrestlinge kept on Sonday after Bartlemewe daye and noe more; there should haue bene kept on Bartlemewe day wrestlinge, but when my Lord Mayor was rydinge thither yt rayned, and so he went into Christes Church at Newegate to here evensonge, and so departed home againe.

The 8 of September, beinge the day of the Natiuity of Our Lady, there was one Gryg, a puller in Surrey, which was taken amonge the people in London for a prophett in curinge diners people but with speaking prayers on them, sayinge he tooke noe mony, so that people would followe him as yf he had bene a God. But, after he had bene examined by th' Earle of Warwycke and other of the Counsell, he was commaunded to be set first at Crowden in Surrey on a scaffold with a paper on his brest on Saterday last, which was the vi day of this moneth, and this day he was sett on a scaffold in Southwarke, on a scaffold before the pillorye in the afternoone, against my Lord Mayor and his brethren rode thorowe the fayre, and there desyred my Lord Mayor and all the people whom he had deceyved to forgiue him, which penaunce was enioyned him by the Counsell, for he was a very dissemblinge person, and toke mony of many, and coates, and other thinges, and had bene a very great deceiver of the people, in sellinge of his ware as conies and other in the markett in Cheape.

This moneth my Lord Mayor, by th' assent of a court of Aldermen, sent one Richard Husband, keeper of the counter in Bread Streat, to the gayole of Newegate for cruelly handlinge of his prisoners, and commaunded the keeper to set a payre of yrons on his legges, which was called the wydowes almes, which he ware from Thursday to Sonday till 3 of the clock in the afternone, and then at great sute by th' assent of the Aldermen that day at Pawles he was released of his yrons, but he remayned there prisoner till Tuesday after, till he was sent for to the Court of Aldermen, and there bound in recognizance in C markes to obserue an Acte made by Common Counsell the first day of August last past, for the orderinge of prisoners in both the counters, and then he was released out of prison.

Allso in this moneth of September my Lord Mayor, with both the sheriffes, rode to the bowlinge allyes and play-houses at Pawles wharfe and by Aldgate, and there findinge diuers simple persons and vagabondes playinge at tables and bowles, sent a lx. or more of them to warde to the Counters, and brake thieyr playinge tables in peeces, and bound diuers of them by recognisance that they should neuer more haunt such places, ere he would release them.

The 18 of September, Mr. Chirtopher Aleyn, Alderman ofthe warde of Faringdon Extra, gaue up his cloake and was set to fyne at 2c. markes, and payd 1 c. markes in hand, and should pay the other c. markes at midsommer next, and had 2 suretys bound with him for the payment thereof.

Memorandum: This year on Michaellmas day, Mr. Andrewe Judde, Alderman, was chosen Mayor of London for the yeare ensueynge and afore the election there was a communion kept in the Guild hall chappell, Sir Rowland Hill knight, Lord Mayor, Sir William Laxton, Sir Martin Bowes, Sir Raufe Warreine, and Sir John Gresham, knightes and aldermen, receivinge the communion. The service songe lyke parishe clarkes accordinge to the Kinges proceedinges.


Memorandum: The v. of November there were two persons punished for breakinge of lanthornes in Southwark, which persons rode from the Counter in Bredstreat, and so all the high streates into Southwarke, havinge 2 lanthornes hanginge about euery of theyr neckes one afore and another at theyr back, with papers set on theyr brestes, written, for breakinge of lanthornes, and allso they rode to St. Georges Church in Southwarke, and there sent them awaye.

Memorandum: The 14 of November my Lady Mayres departed out of this worlde, at ix. of the clock at night, and she was buryed the xx. day of November;*1* my Lord Mayor givinge for hir to euery [parish]*2* of London, 2 gownes for 2 poore men and women, and xl. gownes for poore men and women of St. Bartlemew hospitall, which gownes were of Bristowe freese, so that the nomber he gaue was aboue xiixx gownes, which was a godly act, for he gaue noe blacke to none of th' aldermen, but onely to his officers and the cheife mourners.

Allso the xv. of November, at noone, Thomas Hayes, goldsmith, Chamberlaine of the City of London, departed out of this world; and the 27 of November the Commons were assembled at the Guyld hall for the election of a Chamberlaine, and there were diuers persons that laboured to my Lord Mayor for the office and to the selection of a newe aldermen and the whole Commens; but, accordinge to an ould Act of Common Counsell made the vith yeare of King Henry the VIIth, which was that my Lord Mayor and his brethren should nominate 2 persons sad and wisemen, of which the Commons had free election to chose one of the 2 persons to be theyr Chamberlaine, which lawe was read to the whole Commens, and there was appointed by my Lord Mayor and th' aldermen John Sturgeon, haberdasher, and Henry Fisher, grocer, for the sayd election, but Henry Fisher had the Kinges Maiesties letter written to my Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and Commens, in his favour, which letter was read to the Commens, declaringe in the seyd letter that it was the first suyte that the Kinges Maiestie had required of them; but when they came to tryinge of handes quietly, without noyse or disturbance, th' ellection rested on John Sturgeon, haberdasher, to be theyr Chamberlaine, which sayd Sturgeon was that tyme in Flanders, and gouernour of the Merchaunt Adventurers, and so at this tyme the Commons departed; and the 23rd of December, 1550, the sayd John Sturgeon was sworne Chamberlaine of London, in the Counsell Chamber, my Lord Mayor causinge a court of aldermen to be kept that day for the same purpose, and gaue him respyte to bringe vi. suertyes to be bound for him to make a true accompt yerely of the profittes of the City, which he did after Christmas, himselfe to be bound in 2 Cl and euery one of his suerties in Ll a peece.

This moneth corne waxed very dere, for wheate was at xx s. and aboue, and malt at xv s. and xvi s. and all other corne rysinge after that rate; allso fleshe rose to excessiue prices, so that the counsell sent out commissioners through all England to knowe what plenty of grayne was within the realme; allso my Lord Mayor and his brethren made bargaine with divers merchauntes, both Englishe and straungers, for grayne for the city of London, to be had out of Danske and Hambrough.

The 15 of December Doctor Stephen Gardener, Bishopp of Wynchester, which had bene prisonner long in the Tower of London, was had from thence to Lambethe, to the Archbishopp of Canterburies place, where sate divers Commissioners, apoynted by the Kinges Maiesties commission under his great seale, for the examynation of the said Bishopp of Wynchester upon certeyne articles and interrogatories to them committed, for a contempt he made in his last sermon before the Kinges Maiestie, on Sainct Peeters daie, after Midsommer 1548, at his pallace at Westminster, against the Kinges Maiesties lawes, which articles were deliuered to him this daie, and he sworne to make a true answere to them the eightenth daie of December next, at which daie he appeared their againe; and then he desired that he might haue learned counsell, which was granted him. And the twentie-thirde daie of December he was commanded to appeare againe, on which daie he appeared, and then had daie to the eight of Januarie next, and so after he had diuers daies geuen him to the third of Februarie next. At which daie he was brought from the Tower to Lambeth, going by land through Southwarke, with fortie of the Kinges garde with their halberdes going afore him, and threescore of the warders of the Tower with halberdes after him. And so came home againe after the same manner, and had divers other daies after to appeare thear till the fowertenth daie of Februarie;*3* and that daie, after longe pleadinge on his behalf, my Lord of Canterburie proceeded to judgement, which was that he should loose the name and dignitie of a bishopp, with all his spirituall promotions therunto belonginge; after which judgement he appealed to the Kings Maiestie, saying that the commissioners were not indifferent judges. And so he was committed to the Tower againe at the Kinges pleasure.

The seauenth daie of Februarie, being Saturdaie before Shroue Sundaie, my Lord Maior maried one Thomas Langton's widowe, a skinner, which died three daies before Tweluetide last past, which was a rich mariadge, the inventorie amounting to sixe thousand poundes and more, having five children by the said Langton, all orphans.

The fiftenth daie of Februarie, being the first Soundaie of Lent, my Lord Maior was presented to the Kinges Maiestie at his pallace of Westminster; and, after the proposition made by the Recorder, the Kinges Maiestie made him knight.

Memorandum: in the moneth of March Doctor Ponett,*4* Bishopp of Rochester, was made Bishopp of Wynchester, and Mr. Storie*5* was made Bishop of Rochester, which tow parsons preached before the Kinges Maiestie this Lent the Wednesdaies and Fridaies.

This yeare at Easter flesh was at excessiue prices, for beeffe was sold at three pence the pounde, a quarter of veale at fower shillinges, mutton, a quarter of the best at iii s. iiii d. so that my Lord Maior [and Aldermen] were greatlie exclamed of the people; but they cold not remedie it, for the grasiers sold their cattell at so high prices that the butcher could not sell it at meane prices. Also wheat was sold at xxvi s. viii d. the quarter, and other graine after the same rate.

Also in Easter weeke their came tenne or twelue shippes with rie and wheate out of Hollande, which marchantes of the Styliard and Englishmen brought thence, and some out of Brittanie, my Lord Maior setting the rie at iis. and id. the bushell, and wheate at xxii s. the quarter, to be sold at Billinsgate, which refreshed well the Cittie and the countrey neere London.

This yeare, against Easter, the Bishopp of London altered the Lordes table that stoode where the high aulter was, and he remoued the table beneth the steepps into the middes of the upper quire in Poules, and sett the endes east and west, the priest standing in the middest at the communion on the south side of the bord, and after the creed song he caused the vaile to be drawen, that no person shoulde see but those that receaued, and he closed the iron grates of the quire on the north and sowth side with bricke and plaister, that non might remaine in at the quire.

Memorandum: in this moneth of Aprill, 1551, Mr. Robert Alderman Chersey, mercer, and alderman of the warde of Farringdon Within, gaue ouer his cloke, and gave a howse to the poore of the hospitall of St. Bartholomewes for the mayntenance of the poore, of the value of tenne poundes the yeare, and so was discharged. And Mr. Thomas Curteise, pewterer, was chosen in loco eiusdem, and sworne the twentie-eight daie of Aprill.

The twentie-fowerth daie of Aprill, 1551, their was a Dutchman*6* hanged in Smithfield for heresie, denying the Godhead in Christ, the second person in the Trinitie, who was condemned before my Lorde of Canterburie at Lambeth in March last past.

This yeare, the viiith daie of Maie, was a proclamation made and sett fourth by the Kinges Maiestie and his Privie Councell for the deminishing of the coyne of shillinges and grotes, to go after the last daie of August next commyng, the shilling to go for ix d. and no more, and the grote at iii d. and no more.

After which proclamation made the people within the cittie of London murmured sore and sett upp booth their wares and victuales at higher prices, wherupon the Counsell sent for the Lord Maior to the Court at Greenewych the Soundaie, being the tenth daie of Maie, and gaue him sore words for the disobedience of the people, wheruppon the said Maior called a common Counsell, and also the wardens of euerie craft within the cittie of London to the Guildhall the xiith daie of Male, and their, by the mouth of Mr. Recorder, was declared to the Commons that the Kinges Councell were so discontented with the citizens for the disobedience of the people by murmuringe at the proclamation, and for enhauncing of their wares and victuales, geving them straight charg and commandment on the King our soueraigne lordes behalf to call all their company afore them ymediatlie, and to admonish them that they keepe and sell their victuales and wares at no higher prices then they did before the proclamation was made, and declaring further unto them that they should also admonish all their companys that if they heard any person raile on any of the Kinges Counsell, that they should utter them to the Maior or some of the Councell. For the Erle of Warwicke declared to my Lord Maior at the Court, that, as he rode by Eastcheepe to the Court, he chepned a carcasse of mutton, and the butcher held it at xiii s. and he said that was to much; and another said xvi s. and then he answered that it were better he were hanged; wherupon their arose tales that the said Erle should saie that the daie should comme that a mutton should be worth xx s.; which slaunderous wordes, and also reporting by him that where we had one stranger wee should haue an hundred, with other slaunderous wordes, caused the Kinges Maiesties Councell to take high displeasure with the citizens of London, which by their good obedience should geue ensample to all Englande; and now not so stubborne as they were, wherefore Mr. Recorder exhorted them to take heede from hensforth that such enormities and reportes might be amended, as they tendered the Kinges Majesties high displeasure and indignation, and, if they herd any such ill reportes, to bring fourth the parties, or els it should be to the utter destruction of the Cittie and people for eauer, and cause all the whole realme to be against them.

This moneth also diuers seditious bills were cast abroad in the streates in the night tyme against the high magistrates of the cittie, and for diuers causes mouing the head of the cittie commandment was geauen by the Lord Maior to the Wardens of the Clarkes that no daie bells should be ronge in the morninges nor no curfors*7* in the night from the feast of Pentecost next, untill they had further warning from the Lord Maior, but onelie to ring to mattins and eeavensong and burialls.

This yeare the xxvth daie of Maie was an earthquake in Surrey, at Godston, Brenchingley,*8* Titsey, Rigate, Bedington, and Croydon, and a sixtene miles in length, about twelue of the clocke in the forenoune, which lasted a quarter of an hower, so that the howses, hills, and all the earth shaked that the people were in great feare of God, but no hurt donne, praysed be God theirfore.*9*

This yeare in the moneth of June was great tempest of weather and signes in the element sene in many places in England, and in Kent was haile stones of sixe, seaven, or nyne inches, and diuers when they melted in ones hand were fashioned like a rose.

Also this month the sweating sicknes beganne to raigne in England, in Shropshire first, and so came from shire to shire, wherof died verie many of yong men and weomen,*10* and it beganne in London, about the seaventh daie of Julie and contynued till the last daie therof,*11* wherof died many in the said cittie, booth of rich yong men and other.*12* Also the Duke of Suffolke. And Lord Charles his brother died in Cambridg of the sweete also.*13*

The nynth dale of Julie proclamation was made in London for the abatement of the coyne of the shilling to ix d. and the grote to iii d., which tooke effect ymediatlie after the proclamation was made, which said proclamation was so sodenlie sett fourth that my Lord Maior saw yt not till hit was proclaymed, which was the Counsells commandment, and it was likewise the same daie proclaymed in all places of Englande.*14*

The thirtith daie of Julie at a court of Aldermen was presented to the said court one Richard Huise, tailor, and a batchlor, dwelling in Fleete streete, in Le Warde Farringdon, for committing fornication with his owne sister and having a chield by her, which she confessed; and they booth before the said court for their pennance were committed to ward, and that the morrowe after, being Fridaie, they should be sett in a carr, the hear of their heades shaven overthwart for a deformitie and a paper sett on his backe of the offence, and so to ride three markett daies about the Cittie, and proclamation to be made in euerie markett place of their offence, and then to sett them without the gate at Temple Barre, but not be banished the Cittie.*15*

The first daie of August, being the daie of election of the sheriffes by the Comens, one Mr. Thomas Wilkes, habardasher, was elect sheriffe by the said Commens, which that daie was not in Towne, but the third daie of August he came to my Lord Maior, laying his excuse that he was not of abilitie nor substance for the said office, and shewed a bill to my Lord Maior that he was in debt for a purchase of landes aboue sixe thousand poundes, so that my Lord Maior could not perswade him by no meanes to take the office on him, wherupon my Lord Maior called a court of Aldermen the morrow after, being the fourth daie of August, and their before them he laid diuers causes for himself not of substance for the rome; they causing diuers lawes to be read unto him and other his freindes that came with him conserning the refusing of the said rowme. But all prevayled not; wherfore the court brooke upp and caused the Commens to be assembled againe at the Guildhall the tenth of August, at which daie he was called before the Commens, but first before the aldermen, they reading an old lawe to him that he should swere that he was not in substance of his moueable goodes, as plate, jewells, money, ware, merchandies, booth in England and elswhere beyonde the seas, with leases, one thousand markes his debts paid, which he must swere preciselie, with six persons with him, such as my Lord Maior and his brethren should apoynt. After he declaring his mynde to the Commons, they would haue licensed him, so that he would be bound in recognisance not to go from the cittie, he laying diuers obiections for himself refusing it. Then they would putt him to his oth. His oth being first read before the Comens, he offred to swere, and presented to swere with him Mr. John Sadler, sometyme alderman, Raffe Davenett, marchant, Richard Owyn, George Tadlow, and Richard Grafton, grocer, with other, which said persons would not swere precisely. Then another act was reade that he and they refusinge the oth should pay for a fine iiCl for refusing and to be elegible againe, he at last taking his oth, but then excepting his landes; wherupon he was putt of, and daie geuen him to bring in two hundred poundes on Twesdaie next, which is the eleventh daie of August, or els to take the office on him. And so the Commons departed.

The said viiith daie of August was one Middleton, haberdasher, in Newe Fish Streete, and his wife, arraigned at the Guildhall, she for a common adoultrix with one Nicholas Ballard, gentleman, booth with her owne bodie and also bawde to him for her owne daughter also, and a maide of tenne or eleven yeares of age, her seruant, which the said Ballard occupied all three carnallie, proued by six substantiall and honest persons of the said warde, putting in a booke in wryting to my Lord Maior of five sheetes of paper of their said factes that daie and tyme, which said persons were endited the daie before by the wardens enquest, and this daie arraigned of the said cryme, which was most detestable to be hearde for the enormitie therof; wherfore they had judgement to be carted ymediatlie with raye hoodes and white roodes in their handes, according to the ould lawes of the cittie. The said Ballard after his pennance to remaine in Newgate for the rape of the maide till the next sessions at Newgate, the man and wife to be banished the citie.

The xith daie of August, at a Court of Aldermen, the said Thomas Wilkes appeared againe at the said Courte, where was demanded of him whether he would take the office or els to pay tow hundreth poundes, which he yet stood stiffe in and refused. Butt yet would haue the Commens assembled againe, trusting that they would be good unto him; wherupon the Aldermen consulted among themselues, that they could not dispence against the lawes before ministered unto him. But that either he must take the office on him, or els pay his tow hundreth poundes, which he refusing was committed to warde to Mr. Augustine Hinde, one of the sheriffes, their to remaine in his howse till Satterdaie next, being the xvth daie of August. At which daie the Commens shal be assembled againe for a new election. Hee then to declare further of his mynde. And so the Court departed for this tyme.

The xviiith daie of August, the Commons were assembled for a new election, my Lord Maior calling the said Wilkes afore him and his bretheren in the counsell chamber, first opening unto him whether he would take the office on him, or els whether he had brought his tow hundreth poundes; he still standing stiffe as he did before, refusing booth the office and fine, was putt apart twise or thrise and yett called againe; but he standing still in his old opinion disembling himself, and seing that he was sworne himself, thought it sufficient to be discharged without fine. My Lord Maior declaring unto him, that if he would not take the office nor paie his fine, that he must committ him to warde till he had paid his fine, further offring him that it was the Courtes minde he should pay an hundreth poundes on Michaelmas daie next, which the new sheriffe his fellow the successor must haue by the Act, and the other hundred poundes due to the Chamber he should paie at Easter next ensuing, finding suertie for the same. He yet refusing was comitted to warde to the counter in the Pultrey, the Commens seing when he went. After his departinge, my Lord Maior called upp a Common Counsell before the election, declaring to them how he had used the said Wilkes, axing them whether he should pay three hundred poundes and be discharged of all offices for eauer, or els pay two hundreth poundes and haue respite for certaine yeares. They concluding that he should pay tow hundreth poundes for his fine according to lawe and haue respite for seaven yeares next after er' he should be called to the office of shrivaltie. And so my Lorde and his brethren departed to the election for a new sheriffe. After a proposition made by Mr. Recorder to the Commens, my Lord Maior and his bretheren being departed up to the Maires Court againe, after their ould auncient custome the Commens nominated five persons ; that is to say, John Cowper, fishmonger, who was present at the ellection, Richard Grymes, chaundler, John Hobson, habardasher, Thomas Lee, mercer, and Barnard Jeninges, skinner. After triall by handes, the election rested on John Cowper, the said Cowper declaring his mind to the Commens that he was not of abilitie for the rome, the people crying God geue his ioy, and so accepted their election; and so the Commens departed.

In the afternoune the Commons departed, and then my Lord Maior commond with Mr. Wilkes, who was sent for to dynner from the Counter, to know whether he would paie his tow hundreth poundes at the daies afore lymitted or not; he yet standinge still obstinate, would haue rather gonne to ward againe then paie it. But at last by the mediation of Mr. Knotting, one of his neighboures, he was content, and so the said Mr. Wilkes and Knotting were bounde in recognisance in an hundreth poundes [to pay one hundred pounds]*16* on Michaelmas eaven next, and the other hundreth poundes at Easter next ensuing, or any tyme before, and so he was discharged.

Memorandum: the seavententh daie of August, at seaven of the clocke in the morning, proclamation was made in Cheepe by the common cryer for the abatement of the coyne, he first shewing the proclamation to the awdience vnder the Kinges seale that it was hole and not opened to witnes the same, which proclamation was that the peece of the Testor or shillinge should be currant from the said xviith daie of August for vi d. sterlinge and no more, the grote for ii d., the half grote for a peny, the peny for a half-penny, the ob. for a farthing, and no more, as by the said proclamation doeth appeare.*17*

This yeare, on Bartholomew daie, was kept a wrestling, and the Sundaie after a showting in Finsburie Fieldes by Mr. Sheriffes, booth in one daie, the best game of the standarde xiii s. iiii d. in money, the second game x s., the iiid game vi s. viii d., the iiiith game v s. And the best game of the flight xiii s. iiii d., the second game x s., the third game vi s. viii d., the fourth game vi s., summe 5l, which was paid in money to the wynners at the costes of booth the sheriffes, and no more daies after for this yeare.

The iiiith daie of September, being Fridaie, was one Thomas, a baker in Sothwarke dwelling beyond Battell-bridge, sett on the pillorie in Sothwarke for lacking xiiien ounces wyght in a tow penie wheten loffe, which hath had diuers tymes this yeare warninge and yett neauer kept his weight, wherfore this sentence was judged as yesterdaie at a Court of Aldermen, which said baker stoode on the pillorie from nyne of the clocke in the morninge till eleven, and had his bread hanginge on nailes by him, and lay in ward the daie before his pennance.

The tenth daie of September, 1551, was burned in Finsburie Field xxxi sacke and pokettes of hopps in the afternoune, being nought and not holsome for man's bodie, and condemned by an Act made by my Lord Maior and his brethren th' aldermen the tenth daie of September, at which court six comeners of the Cittie of London were apoynted to be serchers for a hole yeare for the said hopps; and they were sworne the fifth daie of this moneth and made search ymediatlie for the same.

This yeare, on Michaelmas daie, before the election of the Lord Maior at the comunyon in the Guildhall chappell, my Lord Maior, Sir Raffe Warrein, Sir William Laxston, Sir Martin Bowes, Sir Henry Hobulthorne, Sir John Gressam, Sir Rowland Hill, receaued the comunion; and all the Aldermen offred to the poore and receipt of Mr. Chamberlaine for Sainct Bartholomewes hospitall; and after the Commens went to the election of the Lord Maior, which was Mr. Richard Dobbs, alderman.

Memorandum: the tenth of October Doctor Daie,*18* Bishopp of Chichester, which had bene long prisonner in the Fleete, and Doctor Heath,*19* Bishopp of Worcestre, were deposed by the Bishopp of London in Poules the said daie in the afternoon.*20*

Memorandum: the xith daie of October was a great solemnitie kept at the Kinges Maiesties Court at Hampton Court,*21* where that daie Lord Gray,*22* Marques Dorsett, was created Duke of Suffolke; Lord Dudley, Earle of Warwicke, was created Duke of Northumberlande; Lord Sainct John, Earl of Wiltshire, and Lord High Treasorer of England, was created Marquis of Wynchester; and Sir William Harbard, Master of the Kinges Horse, was first made Lord of Karmarden,*23* and after was created Earl of Pembroke; also the King made the same daie iiii knightes also.*24*

The sixteenth daie of October, 1551, the Duke of Somersett was sent to the Tower of London by the Duke of Suffolke and the Lord Marques of Wynchester. And the sevententh daie the Lord Gray,*25* Sir Thomas Palmer, Sir Thomas Arondell, latelie discharged thence, with other also,*26* were sent thither.

The xviith day of October my Lord Maior and Aldermen were sent for to the Kinges Maiesties Counsell at Westminster to the Kinges place at Whitehall, and twelue of the head Comyners with them, which were of the Common Counsell. And this night watch begune with howseholders to be keept in euerie ward from nyne of the clocke at night till fiue in the morninge.

The eightenth daie of October the Duches of Somersett*27* was sent to the Tower, and brought from Sion by water, and Mr. Crane and his wife, Sir Raffe Varne,*28* and one Handsome, one of the Duke of Somersettes men.

The xixth daie of October all the common councell and the wardens of euerie Company in the cittie of London were assembled in the Guildhall before my Lord Maior and Aldermen, where was read a letter directed to the Maior and Aldermen, which was sent them from the Kinges Maiesties Councell, how they should be greatlie circumspect to see good and substantiall watches and warding for the savegard and custodie of the Kinges Maiesties citie and chamber of London, and further Mr. Recorder declared by mouth to the said Commons assembled of the misdemeanor of the Duke of Somerset and his adherentes. How they had entended to haue take the Tower of London, the Isle of Wyght, and haue destroyed the cittie of London, and the substantiall men of the same,*29* wherfore the counsells pleasure was that euerie cittizen in his owne howse should looke to his famelie and to see that vagabondes and idle persons might he auoyded out of the Cittie, and so the Comens departed.

Also the same daie the Maior and Aldermen directed preceiptes to certaine of the head companies for the warding of the gates of the cittie by daie, that is to say, that tow persons should waite at euerie gate of the Cittie from six of the clocke in the morning till seaven of the clocke at night to see that no suspect persons in maskes nor maisterles men should enter into the Cittie. But examyn them and send them to warde till the Kinges Councell should discharg them. And that euerie night the constable that watched should haue the keies of euerie gate deliuered him and not open the gates till six of the clocke in the morning. And further that euerie alderman should apoynt tow of the councell to ride about the Cittie euerie night as their turnes came about, to see that the watches of the Cittie keepe their howres apoynted and that they should not beginne to ride about till tow of the clocke in the morninge, and euerie of them to haue one serieant and his yeoman to waite on them to lead the waie.

The said nynetenth daie Sir Michaell Stannopp, Mr. Banester, and Mr. Whalley were had to the Tower. And the twentie sixth daie of October Sir Nicholas Poynes,*30* Sir Miles Partridge, and Sir Thomas Holcroft were had to the Tower.

The xiiith [xxx]*31*? daie of October the Kinges Maiestie sett fourth a proclamation for certaine newe coynes of siluer and gold to be made newe and currant within the realme, that is to saie, a peece of siluer of fiue shillings sterlinge, the second peece at ii s. vi d. sterling, the third peece of xii d. sterling, the fourth peece of vi d. sterling, another peece called a peni of the doble rose,*32* the second an halfe penny of the single rose, the third peece a farthing with a port cullis.

The coines of gould, that is to saie, a whole soueraigne of fine gould of thirtie shillinges, another peece of fine goulde called a angell of tenne shillinges, the third peece called an angelett of fine gould of fiue shillinges, the half soueraigne of crowne gould of tenne shillinges, another peece of crowne gould called a soueraigne of twentie shillinges, the third peece of crowne goulde of fiue shillinges, the fourth peece of crowne goulde of tow shillinges six pence, and all other base moneies to go after the rate of the last proclamations.

The 31 of October the Kinges Maiesties Counsell sent a letter to my Lord Mayor of London, with a bill of provision for certeine kindes of victualles, as beefes, muttons, veales, swannes, and other kindes of poultry [and] meates, with allso for bread, fuell, wyne, and beere, waxe, and torches, for the provision of the Queue Dowager of Scotland, to be given by them as a present from*33* the citye of London to the sayd Quene; which Quene was lately aryued at Portesmouth, comminge out of Fraunce, and desyringe lycense of the Kinge to passe thorough England into Scotland; upon the readinge of which byll my Lord Mayor called a court of Aldermen in the afternone, and sent the common sergeant and the towne clarke to the Kinges Maiesties Counsell to knowe theyr pleasures therein. And the first day of November, in the morninge, the aldermen assembled at my Lord Mayors house, and there was declared to them by the commen sergeant and towne clarke the aunswere of the Counsell, that the sayd provision should be provided by them to present her on the morrowe, at the Bishop of Londons place by Pawles. And in the afternone, as my Lord Mayor and his brethren the Aldermen were hearinge evensonge in the Guildhall chappell afore his goeinge to Pawles, a common counsell was called up into the Mayors Court, where after evensonge my Lord Mayor and his brethren declared the Counselles pleasure, and to knowe theyr mindes therein, which sayd yt should stand the City in iiiixxl. or more, the sayd commen counsell affirminge the Counselles sute.

This yeare, in Mr. Juddes tyme, in October, the liberties of the Stiliard were seazed into the Kinges handes for diuers causes forfeited contrarie to the entercourse.

EDWARDI VI. Anno 5. 1551

End of excerpt.

I have proofread this text with particular care because of the archaic spelling, but can make no guarantee as to its matching the original manuscript.


Clicking on the right side of the footnote number will take you back to the appropriate section of the text.

  1. "The xix day of November was bured my lade Jude, mayress of London, and wyff of Sir Andrew Jude, mayr of London, and bured in the parryche of Saynt Ellen, in Bysshope-gatt stret." --Diary of Henry Machyn, p. 2.
  2. Alderman in MS.
  3. According to King Edward's Journal it was on February 13.
  4. John Poynet, who had succeeded Ridley at Rochester, was translated to Winchester the 23rd March, 1551, and resigned 1553.
  5. John Scory was appointed by the King 26th April, pursuant to statute I Edward VI., and the royal significavit to the Archbishop issued the next day; he was consecrated at Croydon 30th August following, and on the 23rd of May in the next year was translated to Chichester.
  6. George Von Paris, a Dutchman, who resided in London in the practice of his profession of a surgeon, was burned in Smithfield for Arianism. "Hanged" here is a clerical error for "burnt."
  7. Curfews.
  8. Stow reads, Bletchingly, which is in Surrey, and, therefore, most probably correct; but our text looks more like Brenchley in Kent.
  9. The writer of the Grey Friars' Chronicle, adds "and also at Westmyster and dyvers other places in London, and abowte there."
  10. "It is to be noted, that this mortality fell chiefly or rather on men and those also of the best age, as between 30 and 40 yeeres, fewe women, nor children, nor olde men died thereof.''--Stow, p. 606. In King Edward's journal it is noticed that it raged chiefly among young men of a strong constitution, p. 30.
  11. "It began in London the 9th of July and the 12th of July it was most vehement.''--Stow, p. 605.
  12. Some curious particulars of this epidemic are given by the late John Gough Nichols, in a note to Machyn's Diary, p. 319, and also in the Chronicle of the Grey Friars, p. 70. Stow's account is very circumstantial, p. 605.
  13. Henry Brandon, fifth Duke of Suffolk, son of Charles Brandon by his second wife, died of the sweating sickness, as did also two days after his brother, who had succeeded him, so that, the title having become extinct in the family of Brandon, the Earl of Warwick resolved to procure that honour for the Marquis of Dorset, father of Jane Grey, whom he designed for one of his sons.
  14. This abatement of the nominal value of the coinage would appear to have been made with the object of cheapening the high price of provisions, but completely failed in its object, as we read in the Chronicle of the Grey Friars of London that "the vitelles was as dere after as it was before and worser, [so] that the pepull cryde owte of it in every place thorrow alle the realme," p. 70.
  15. "And the 3rd day was bannyshyd the citte bothe; but he would have gevyne moch to be ascowsyd, but it wold not be tane." --Grey Friars' Chronicle, p. 70.
  16. Omitted in MS.
  17. "This was a terrible time in London, for many one lost, sodainly, his friends by the sweat, and their money by the proclamation." -—Stow, p. 605.
  18. George Day, S.T.P. Provost of King's College 1538, and Bishop of Chichester 1543.
  19. Nicholas Heath, S.T.P. Bishop of Rochester 1539, of Worcester 1544, and Archbishop of York 1555.
  20. Stow adds, "and sent again to the Fleet," p. 605.
  21. The Court had retired to Hampton Court on the sweating-sickness finding its way into the palace at Westminster, where it carried off one of th egentlement of the bedchamber, and afterwards one of the King's grooms.
  22. Henry Lord Gray succeeeded his father as 6th Marquis of Dorest in 1530, and was created Duke of Suffolk 11 Oct. 1551. He married Frances, daughter and coheir of Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, by Mary, Queen Dowager of France and sister of King Henry VIII. K.G. attainted and beheaded 1554, when his honours became forfeited.
  23. Sir William Herbert was son and heir of Sir Richard Herbert, natural son of William Herbert, first Baron Herbert, of Chepstow, who was created Earl of Pembroke 27 May, 1468; he was knighted and made Chief Gentleman of the Privy Chamber by King Henry VIII. in 1546, and created Baron Herbert of Cardiff 10 October, 1551, and the day following made Earl of Pembroke.
  24. "The King also made William Cecil, his secretary, M. John Cheeke, one of his schoolmasters, M. Henry Dudley, and M. Henry Nevill, knights." --Stow, p. 605.
  25. William Lord Grey de Wilton was apprehended on a charge of participation in the Duke of Somerset's rebellion, but was afterwards released, and in 1560 assisted in blockading Leith. --Burnet, ii. p. 138.
  26. Viz. Sir Ralph Vane, Sir Myles Partridge, Sir Michael Stanhope, and divers other gentlemen. --Stow, p. 605.
  27. Anne Stanhope, "a woman of a haughty stomack." --Baker's Chronicle, p. 326.
  28. Sir Ralph Vane or Fane.
  29. Upon these extravagant accusations, which were everywhere published with circumstances calculated to impose on the people, most ancient historians have, Dr. Burnet excepted, founded their accounts of this event. What is most probable is, that the Duke had projected to get himself declared Protector in the next Parliament, since the Earl of Rutland affirmed it upon oath. See Rapin's Hist. ii. p. 22.
  30. Sir Nicolas Poyntz.
  31. 30th October in Stow, which from the order in the text would appear to be correct.
  32. "not sterling but base." --Stow, p. 606.
  33. "for" in MS.