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ORPORA-
TOS OP
BRIDGE.

" editæque per Dominum Stephanum Cantuariæ Ar- and enjoining that Sir Thomas shall execute to them a CORPORA“ chiepiscopum, A.D. MCCXXII., et anno regni Regis deed of release under seal, and of warranty against ATION OF

AXBRIDGE.
“ Henrici, filii Johannis, viiio. In primis, de sententia John [Selwode), Abbot of Glastonbury; the Guild -
“ Excommunicationis Majoris.” The manuscript is Steward paying to Sir Thomas 10 marks,—"and over
slightly rubricated in one page, and is imperfect at the “ that, I award, ordeyn, and deyme, that the name of
end.

“ the seide Sir Thomas shall be entred in the Domini-
A large leaf of parchment, carefully preserved, on “ cal roll of the Chyrche of Axbrygge forseyde, and
which is entered a later copy of the account given of “there to be prayed for ymperpetuyte.” The three
King Edmund's escape, while hunting, in the Chronicle seals of Sir Richard Chok, Sir Thomas Seymour, and
above described. The writing in this case is of about John Martynsey, still remain, in excellent condition;
the middle of the 15th century, certainly later than and the fact that the deed is in English renders it of
the other; and stops short with naming the grant by additional interest.
King John, but not giving any of it. This version has Ratification by John, Prior, and the Chapter, of
been transcribed in a folio volume of copies of Charters Bath, of a grant for life by Ralph [de Shrewsbury),
of Axbridge, with translations, made by William Illing Bishop of Bath and Wells, to Walter de Pulle, of the
worth [late Keeper of the Records in the Tower] A.Þ. tenement which he holds in villenage, in the manor of
1824.

Cheddre; date 25th Edward III. The Bishop's deed,
A summons, on paper, bearing date 22nd August 1623, which is recited, is attested by Sir Walter de Pavely
and signed by Henry St. George, “Richmond,” and and Sir Walter de Rodeneye, knights, and John de
Samson Lennard, “ Blewmantle," commissioned under Langelonde, John de Bartone, and Andrew Cane.
the Great Seal, to make “A generall surveigh of the A deed, finely written, with the Prior and Convent's
“ armes, matches, and issues, of the nobility and gen. seal attached, in fine preservation, except at the
trie within this county ;' calling on the Mayor of margin. In it, Robert, Prior, and the Convent, of
Axbridge to shew to them the Common Seal of the Bath, recite that they have inspected a writing of
Corporation, or an impression thereof. i

Walter (Haselschagh), Bishop of Bath and Wells,
A small quarto book, containing ten leaves of parch stating that he has granted to Nicholas de Langelonde
ment, in good condition, within a cover of stout vellum, and Johanna, his wife, a meadow, mill, and tenement,
upon the outside of which is written-" The Stentar," which Richard Code and Beatrix Touneshende held in
it being an Extent Book, or book of valuation of pro- the manors of Comptone and Ceddre; also, that of his
perty, belonging to the Corporation. The first part moor of Comptone and Axebrugge they may enclose
was written apparently in the reign of Henry VI., the 10 acres, to hold to them and the lawful heirs of their
latter part in that of Edward IV. It is full of curious bodies, at a yearly rent of 24s. 9d. ; suit also being
matter as to the ancient localities of the place. Men reserved to the Bishop at his Hundred Court of Bane-
tion is made of “Twochynlane," of which all memory welle. The Bishop's deed is dated at Pokelechirche,
has perished, “ yn the north party of the Yelde Halle.” 10th February 31st of Edward I., and attested by
This Guild Hall no longer exists, one having been Matthew de Forneaus, Andrew Loterel, and Thomas
erected, at a recent date, on another site. The “Mais de Gornai, knights, John de Hamptone, Gregory de
“ terys of the Comune Gilde," mentioned in a docu- Welintone, William Wason, Richard Lovenye, John
ment of the time of Richard II. (who, with the Houwell, Richard de St. Barbara, Walter le Burti, Geof-
Portreve, represented the Corporation, the town not frey le Riche, Nicholas le Riche, and others. There are
having received a regular Charter of Incorporation till also two other deeds, the complements of this, one
A.D. 1556) were called the “ Yelde Stewardys," or being a confirmation of the same grants by Henry, the
“ Guild Stewards,” an appellation by which they were Dean, and the Chapter, of Wells, and the other à con-
known down to the date above-mentioned. The fifth firmation by the Chapter only.
page begins, (tr. from the Latin) :-“Be it remembered, Grant by King Edward I., at Westminster, 7th July,
is that in the seventh year of the reign of King Edward in the 7th year of his reign, to Reginald, Bishop of
“ the Fourth, after the Conquest, in the time of Bath and Wells, of a Fair at Axbridge, to last four
“ Thomas Payn and John Hayn, touker [fuller], days; namely, the Eve and Day of St. Barnabas
“ Stewards of the Guild, all the lands and tenements [11th June) and the two following days. Witnesses,
pertaining unto the brethren, burgesses of Axe- Gilbert de Clare, Earl of Gloucester and Hereford
“ brugge, were written down in this book.” The [Hertford], Henry de Lacy Earl of Lincoln, Humphrey
writing that follows is minute, but clear, and the items, de Boun Earl of Essex and Hereford, John de Vesy,
which appear to be 52 in number, conclude with the Robert Tybotot, Hugh Fitz-Otes, Patrick de Cadurcis
then tenants of the shambles in the Market-placc,- (Chaworth], Antony Bek Archdeacon of Durham,
which, existing from very remote times, have only Master Thomas Bek, Archdeacon of Coventry, and
recently been removed.

others. The seal is greatly mutilated.
A parchment scroll, most exquisitely written, headed Grant by Henry III. to the Prior and Monks of
E. R.; between which letters is a circle, and within it St. Peter at Bath, the Dean and Canons of St. Andrew
“ God save the Qvenes Majesty. Anno Domini 1573, at Wells, the Abbot and Monks of St. Mary at Glaston-
“ Elizabetha Regina Angliæ sexto-decimo, vicesimo bury, and Jocelyn, Bishop of Bath, and his successors,
“ mensis Decembris.” It contains “the Maior's Othe," that they and their men, for ever, shall be free of toll of
and those of " the Constables, Bauliffes, Burges, their all things which they have to buy or sell : (tr.)–“Given
“ Receptance [admission to the freedom]," and the “ by the hand of the venerable Father Ralph [Neville),
Oaths of the Aldermen and the Chamberlains.

“ Bishop of Chichester, our Chancellor, at Fuleham,
An indenture, on paper, signed by Sir William “ the 15th day of May, in the 13th year of our reign,”
Russell, acknowledging payment of 12 pounds by the [A.D. 1229.] The deed is finely written; the seal,
late Mayor of Axbridge, 5th November 1638,_" for and however, is in fragments.
“ towards the settyng forth of a shipp of warre, accord- A parchment roll, containing a list of the burgesses
“ ing to said writt in that behalfe directed, for the of Axbridge, as taxeď for a fifteenth granted to King
“ safeguard of the seas and defence of the realm." Henry VII: the localities named are, East Street, the

Three long paper rolls, containing rentals of the Market Place, More Lane, and West Street. Among
“ Gyld of Axbrygge,temp. Henry VIII.

the inhabitants occur the names of John Lyrpole, John
A paper book, without a cover, and containing nine Oldemixon, and John Dogette.
leaves, five of which are written upon; the first being A long list, on vellum, of tenants of the Guild pro.
a rental of the Guild, temp. Edward VI. The other perty in the 3rd year of Henry V. (A.D. 1415], with the
written leaves contain presentments by the homage in sums received of them by the Guild Stewards for rent,
the borough Court there, in the same reign; the pre- or other payments. Among them is mentioned a pay-
sentments seeming to be mostly for letting tenements ment called “borgeswyke”; the same no doubt as the
fall into disrepair, and cutting down trees.

“borgesshippe” in other instances; payment on ad.
A parchment indenture, bearing date the 22nd of mission as burgess. Badly written, and indistinct.
March, 9th Edw. IV. (A.D. 1469), being the Award of Two parchment rolls of Courts held at Axbridge,
“ Richard Chok, knight, one of the Kynge's Judges 28 and 29 Henry VIII., with presentments of the
“ of his Comyn Bench (Common Pleas]." There having homage, and precepts issued.
been “dyvers varyaunces, stryves, and debates, be A long parchment, entitled," Placita de Juratis et
“ twyne Sir Thomas Seymour, knight, and John “ Assisis coram Salomone de Roffa et sociis suis, Jus.
“ Martynsey, of that one part, and Johan Hayne, and “ticiariis Itinerantibus apud Somertone in Comitatu
Water Caddewylle, Gylde Steward of the Burgh of “ Somersetiæ, in crastino Ascensionis Domini, anno
Axebrygge, of that other part," as to lands formerly “regni Regis Edwardi, filii Regis Henrici, octavo."
belonging to Thomas Gurdellere, “Prest in Axbrygge [A.D. 1280.] Among other things, Inquisition is made
foreseyde," the award is now made; it being in Quo warranto the Bishop of Bath and Wells holds the
favour of certain feoffees of the said Guild Steward, boroughs of Axebrigge, Ceddre, and Wells : also, as to

CORPORA

TION OF AXBRIDGE.

CORPORAA THRIDGE

the right of the Dean and Chapter of Wells to hold " offences were committed, the some of ii d.On the
North Curry, and the advowson of Congresbury; also, 15th of September in the 19th year of Charles II. (A.D.
by what title Anselm de Gournay holds right of gallows, 1667], Thomas Howell, an inhabitant of Axbridge, is
tumbrel, pillory, and amends of assize of ale in the brought before the Bench for abusive and opprobrious
manor of Were [distant about two miles from Ax- language against the magistrates; the charge thus
bridge). Tacked to this, which is apparently of con- ending,-“And that a little before that tyme when that
temporary date with the Iter to which it relates, is a “ the Dutch entered Shippie Iland, this Howell came to
copy of a grant by Edward I. to Anselm de Gournay " Thomas Peel, the constable, and clapt him uppon the
and his tenants at Netherweare (now mostly known as “ shoulder, and with a phillip with his fingers, in a re-
Lower Weare).-"Given at St. John's” [Perth, in “joicing manner, saide these words, that now honest
Scotland] “on the morrow of the Epiphany, in the 7th " men might have leave to speke.” At the next Court
“ year of his reign.”

Howell expressed sorrow for his offence, and signed a
Several parchment rolls of views of Frankpledge, declaration in the book to that effect. Under the 6th of
temp. Elizabeth and James I.

October, 28th Charles II. (A.D. 16767, is the following
A parchment rental of the Guildhall of the brethren at entry,-"A fyne of 40s. ymposed one Robert Clarke,
Axebrugge, 18th Henry VII., William Ewen and William “ Bayliffe, of the burrough aforesaid, for not executing
Fychet being Guild-Stewards.

" of his office, for not whippinge of Hester Hannam, of
“A Book of Oaths, containing eight leaves of paper, " Dundrey, in the County aforesaid, spinster, according
bound in a leaf of parchment, with writing in very large " to the Statute in that case made and provided."
characters in Lombardic, apparently a paraphrase of the Afolio Book of Ordinances made in Convocations
Psalms; derived probably from the spoils of Glaston- of the Borough of Axbridge, beginning in 1599 and
bury. The oaths are in English, and written in a hand ending in 1685, with three additional entries under the
probably of the beginning of Elizabeth's reign. They years 1754, 1780, and 1810. An entry states, under
are, those of the Constables, the Bailiff, the Shamble. 1685, that John Lewis, Senior, and Nathaniel Sallwey,-
Wardens, the Bread-taster, the Ale-taster, and the Lea- two superior burgesses of the borough, had been lately
ther-searcher. The last two are very curious. The “ in open rebellion against his Majestie, by bearing
Mayor is mentioned, but his oath is not given. There “ armes in behalfe of James Scott, late Duke of Mon-
are other oaths, added in a somewhat later hand.

“ mouthe; for which treasonable action wee the The Axbridge “ Burrow Booke of Service," a small “ Mayor, Aldermen, and Common Councell. .. folio paper book, with entries, temp. Elizabeth and so have thought fitt and requisite to disfranchise the James I., of the tenants of the various streets, and the “ aforesaid of being burgesses, and of and from all titles by which they claimed to hold. There are, in all " priviledges and emunities thereunto appertaining." about 30 leaves, at either end of the book, occupied with There are four pages of entries at the other end of the these entries, the rest being filled with “ grants and volume, of punishments for petty offences, in 1619 and “ bargaynes at Courts of Surveys for the burrough and 1620, mostly for “ abuse in drunkenness.” In one " mannor of Axbridge,” beginning in 1706, and coming instance, at least, the offender remained in the stocks down to the beginning of this century. In the old part all night. Others again were fined for playing at unof the book, among others, occur the following surnames; lawful games, for playing from 10 in the morning to 4 -Croker, Wyllet, Bythese, Nycholas, Longe, Drayton, in the afternoon, and for brawling and fighting. The Carlyne, Hawkyns, Woolcott, Crowne, Eliott, Locke, earlier part of this volume is filled with orders made Whytyng, Byngham, Mare, Myles, Allyn, Hardwyche, by the Council, in Convocation, William Lock being Podyer, Jacob, Durban, Hall, Haynes, Murrowe, Nase, Mayor, in the 41st year of Elizabeth [A.D. 1599). Foller, Braddy, Spyryng, Salway, Warren, Lyppyet, Many of these ordinances are curious; Among them, Parsons, Trye, Norkett, Fere, Freman, Joye, Morse, one is, that no burgess shall be a retainer to any knight, Colstone, Herte, Jeffreys, Byckley, Bale, Tyvertor, esquire, or “genteleman, nor weare their cloth or Tryckett, Good, Loo, Sebyer, Checke, Hewysche, Pris- “ lyvery.” Another,--" It is ordered, decreed, and ton, Brookman, Goldwyer, Hasell, Bourne, Mattock, “ established, that no victualler, brewster, typler, nor Cornish, Whitinge, Laurence, Willett, and Swerce. “ hostler, shall lodge, or suffer in his house any man's

A Book of Chamberlains' Accounts, A.D. 1694-1765, “servant to be lodged, that ought by the order aforea small folio, with leaves of paper. In the Corporation " said to be lodged in his master's house, uppon payne account for 1745 is entered—" Paid for a silver seal, with " to forfeyte 6s. 8d." Country bakers and “foreigners" “the Corporation arms,” the seal still in use, probably. are only to sell their bread in open market, about the Many of the items are very curious.

High Cross; and chandlers are to sell candles for no "Convocation Booke;" a small folio volume with more than 31d. per pound, on pain of paying 38. 4d., or leaves of paper, in a parchment cover, its contents rang- suffering imprisonment. The town bakers all to serve ing from the year 1658 to 1760. In general, they appear the poor with brown bread, the loaves of which shall to be of a purely formal nature, such as elections of be as good and as large in weight as those brought into officers and admissions of burgesses. Under the 15th of the borough by the country bakers. The secrets of March, in the 14th year of Charles II. (A.D. 1662], it is the Council are not to be revealed, under a penalty. stated that the Government Commissioners for regulat- “ Item, it is ordered and decreed that the Mayor from ing Corporations, under the Act for the well governing " this tyme forth shall be brought home from the hall and regulating of Corporations, did, on the 6th of " with all the whole company of Masters and burMarch 1662, remove Henry Symes from being Mayor “ gesses, as in tymes past." - " That noe innkeeper or and a capital burgess, and nominate Richard Rogers to " typler shall take on the markett-day for one horse, be Mayor in his place; who was accordingly now elected “yf he hath butt one bottle of hay, more than a penny." to the said office. Other officers were also at the same -“It is ordered and decreed by all the company aforetime superseded. On the 15th of August 1665, an order " said, that the master of every company shall proceede was made, to the following effect;-* Ordered that the “ with their dewytes, and have them confirmed under “ Charter granted by Queen Elizabeth, and likewise the “seale before the Birth of Christ next ensuing, uppon Charter by King James, granted unto this Burrow “ payne of 3s. 4d., and the some of money so forfeyted “..shall be forthwith translated into English by " shall be imployed to the encrease of the stock of the “ Mr. William Alderson, or some other able man. And " same company.” In the 17th year of James I. (A.D. " that the sayd Charters, so Englished, shall be read 1619] the Mayor was granted 16 pounds yearly, towards “ unto every Mayor successively within one moneth after his expenses. On the 4th of September, 22nd James I., “ he is sworne to doe his office, and as often afterwards A.D. 1624, an enactment was made that as there have “ as need shall require; which sayd Charters shall re- hitherto been three Companies in the town, those of the 66 mayne in the chest." Mr. Alderson was Rector of Drapers, Leathermen, and Firemen (Smiths of various the Parish of Axbridge; the translations, if they were kinds), all householders who shall keep a shop or ever made by him, seem no longer to exist.

station (P stall], or who shall abide or keep a family The Axbridge Sessions' Book, 1663–1684; a small thin within the borough, shall be made to enter one of such folio paper volume, bound in parchment. · Among the three Companies. In the case of a private man, followentries are the following :-"8 October 1664. Robert ing no trade, he shall choose such Company “ as he “ Joye, of the parish of Wedmore, in the county of So- “ himself liketh to be free of," under a penalty of 20 “ mersitt, yeoman, in the hearing of John Tuthill, then shillings. In 1629 an order was made that the Steward, “ Mayor of the burrow aforesaid, at Axbridge afore or Town Clerk, should not from thenceforth sell his “ said, did att two severall tymes prophanely sweare as office to his successor, and that his yearly fee was to “ followeth, vidzt., the oath By G-d,' and the oath be 4 pounds. In 1639 again, this fee was abolished, ' By G-d's wounds'; and thereupon, without dis- and the Town Clerk was to charge his proper fee for “ tresse taken or ymprisonment inflicted, did pay to his services. The next entry after this, with a wide " William Spyringe and Edward Harris, to the use of hiatus, is in 1662, when an agreement is entered as “ the poore of the Parishe of Axbridge, where the being made between the Mayor and major part of the

CORPORA

TION OF AXBRIDGE.

CORPORA. capital burgesses, to make up the sum of 52 pounds FION OF yearly, to make it worth his while to William Alderson, IWBRIDGE

Student in Divinity, to hold the office of Rector, or Minister, of the Parish Church. At the same Convocation, apparently, 16th September 1662, it is stated, -"Whereas of late tyme many and greate summos of “ money have beene expended and disbursed for wine “ spent at the usuall and acustomed meetings, and “ feasts made and helde by the Mayor of this burrow,

the abundance and superflewety thereof much ex“ ceedinge the quantitie spent in formerly tymes to " the greate exhaustinge of the annuall revenew of this “ Corporacion;" the result being that from thenceforth the sums to be spent in wine were to be limited to 11. 68. 8d. for the day on which the Mayor was sworn, 13s. 4d. at each of the two Sessions' dinners; "and at "such feast or dynner as shall be kept on the day that “ such moneys as well devoted persons have trusted “ this Corporation with 68. 8d., and noe more; and on “ the day of election of the Mayor 6s. 8d. If anything “ above be spent, the Mayor to pay for it.” 6th April 1666,-“ Ordered . . . . that noe inhabitant “ whatsoever of the foresaid Burrow, and the West “ Streete of Axbridge, shall from this day forward “ send or goe to the cittie of Bristol or the town of “ Bedminster, or receive any goodes from them, until “ further order given ; upon paine of being confined " to their houses by the space of one moneth; and " that no person whatsoever shall receive any per " son or persons that shall come from thence, under “ the forsaid penalty” (probably plague was then prevalent). On the 20th of August in the same year an ordinance was made that the 16 pounds formerly granted to the Mayor should be cut down to eight. The next entry is,-“12 February 1676. It was ordered that for " the future, after notice thereof first given, that all “ such persons who shall bring any sorte of garden “ fruits to sell at any tyme in the markett within the “ Burrow aforesaid, that they pitch theire said garden “ fruites at the head of the corne markett, upp towards “ the Cage; videlicet, turnepps, carretts, parsnepps, “ potatoes, cale, cabbages, cale plants, and all other “ garden fruits whatsover.” On the 28th of September 1679, an ordinance was made, to the effect that from thenceforth the Mayor's allowance should be 12 pounds yearly. The following entry occurs under the date of 1st of March 1680;-“Whereas Mr. Thomas Durson, the “ present Mayor of the Burrow, hath since his being " chosen .... openly and publiquely committed “ diverse notorious outrages and breaches of the peace, “ assaults, batteryes, and woundinge of severall persons, " and having threatened to kill or mischeiffe several ." others, publiquely defamed and abused the Alderman " of the said burrough, he being a justice of peace there, " and forceably and unlawfully takinge away the goods “ of several inhabitants of the said burrowe... with out any deed or legall course of laws or justice, and " fraudulently, viciously, and illegally behaved him“self," he is therefore removed from office, and Mr. John Tuthill substituted in his place. The following entry appears under the 6th of August 1683,-“The " Mayor, Aldermen, and Common Councilmen had “ caused their humble address of theire hearty thanks " and prayers to God, for the miraculous deliverance of “ His Majestie and his royal brother's lives from that “ Machivellian plott of those traitorous conspirators “ who have been lately discovered to His Majesty ;" which address had been tendered by two capital burgesses " to all the persons within the Burrow for their " signature; whereupon, on Caleb Stondly, an inferior “ burgess, refused to subscribe his name, and said he “ would not put his name to any more addresses, " because he was laught att by some persons for sub“ scribinge his name to a former address :" he was accordingly summoned to appear this day, and, on acknowledging that he had so said, was disfranchised from being a burgess. Under 28th of November 1684 is the following notice :-Having heard that His Majesty had “resolved to call in all Charters granted by his " progenitors," at this Convocation, the Mayor, Alderman, and Common Council “thought fit to make a " voluntary surrender of their Charter.” Attached to the next leaf is a Letter, or probably copy of a Letter, dated 29th of November, to à Lord, speaking of a late interview with Lord Fitz Harding, and stating their intention to lay their Charters,—"and ourselves, at His " Majesty's feet.” They then bespeak his Lordship's good graces : the name however does not appear. At the other end of the volume are four pages filled with matter belonging to the years 1619, 20, headed, --"A " Bookė of Recordes for divers things done within the

“ Borrough aforesaid from the 4th of October 1619. “ Jasper Wrentmore being then Mayor, and George " Fuller, Alderman.” “As already stated, they are mostly fines and punishments for drunkenness.

A small folio paper volume, in a parchment cover. containing proceedings of the Manorial Court of the West Street in Axbridge, beginning the 20th of April 37 Henry VIII. [A.D. 1548]. It also contains proceedings of the Courts Baron of Frome, Eyford, or Eggeford, Warmester, and Newport, the latter being called “the Court of Richard Kyrton.” The contents are mostly formal, but the names on the Jury lists are of possible value.

Book of the Court Baron of the Borough of Axbridge; a small folio volume, containing about 75 leaves of paper, in a parchment cover. The title given on the first page is,-“Liber Senescalli Gildæ de Axbrige.” It begins—“ De tempore Johannis Kemys, Portaforii “ [Portreve] de Axbrige; et idem Johannes Kemys et “ Thomas Wheler, Senescalli Gildæ ibidem, videlicet, “ anno regni Regis Henrici VIII XXX°; Egidio Dod“ yngtone ad tunc Senescallo [Town Clerk] ibidem, " qui hæc proprio manu scripsit.” A list of the tenants [A.D. 1539] then follows, in the same fine handwriting. The third leaf, however, passes on, in another hand, to the 3rd year of Edward VI. [A.D. 1550). In the 2nd and 3rd year of Philip and Mary, Thomas Clotterboke, the then Portreve, agrees with his brethren that, for the convenience granted to him of buying and selling leather and hides in the market, he will pay to the Portreve 20 shillings yearly; the same to be paid at the “ Pwryffycaissyon of oure Lady,” as also, “ to make " them a nonyst denere"-make them an honest dinner. The later entries appear to be less formal than the earlier proceedings in the Manorial Court, but relate to the same property. The latest entries seem to be mostly conveyances of the Corporation property, on leases for three lives. The two most recent entries are in 1695 and 1702.

The Royal Charters of the borough of Axbridge, with their seals, are preserved in good condition. They bear date the lst of January, 3 and 4 Philip and Mary [A.D. 1557] ; 23rd of January, 41st Elizabeth (A.D. 1599]; and 25th of June, 21st James I. (A.D. 1623).

A folio paper volume, imperfect, and without a cover, containing proceedings in the Court held at Axbridge, before the Portreve: it extends from the 3rd and 4th year of Philip and Mary to the 3rd of Elizabeth. Under the 4th and 5th year of Philip and Mary, the first Court that was held before the Mayor (which office bad recently been established by Charter) is noticed, Richard Partridge being then Mayor, and the first suit before him being a plaint by William Bythesea against Thomas Edwardes, for breach of covenant for delivery of malt. The name of Thomas Clutterboke appears in the book, first as Portreve of the town, then as Mayor.

A similar paper book of proceedings of the Court, in good condition, but without a cover; it begins in the 10th year of Elizabeth, and ends in the 18th year of that reign.

A“ Convocation Book," a small folio paper volume of about 100 leaves, bound in loose parchment. There are 5 flyleaves, 3 still blank, the other two containing confessions, in a hand of the 16th century, in a bastardy case. The rest of its contents are minutes of proceedings of the Corporation of Axbridge; the book containing a great deal of matter, much of it very curious, and the writing being generally good. Its title is thus given at the commencement :-“Thys booke “ made the yere of oure Lorde Gode 1556, and in the “ rayng of Philippe and Marye by etc., the ijith and iiiith “ yere. The same yere Peter Welche Portreve, and “ ended Mayor.' Thomas Hykes, Wyllyam Brady, “ Constables, Clement Bourne, Baylie. The same yere “ oure Corporalytie was graunted, and the viiith daye " of February oure Charter was proclaymed att ye “ Markid Crosse.” One of the first Ordinances made is the following :-“ Also, that no bourgess shall come “to the hall before the Maior and hys compeyne, with"oute hys gowne or clooke, a pone payne off, everie "tyme so offendinge, to the Maior vi d.;' following which is,-“ Also, that no bourgess shall my fame, or " name, or calle, other, as knave, thyff, harlett, or “ lober, or anye other ffyltie lyke wordes, ia geste or in “ any wyse then good and fayre.” The last entry in the reign of Charles the First is entitled,-“ Convocatio “ tenta apud Guibaldam burgi prædicti die Luna “ secundo die Octobris, anno regni Domini nostri Caroli, “ Dei gratia, etc., vicesimo quarto (A.D. 1648].” The name of Charles as King had disappeared from the records of some Corporations long before this. The

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next ontry bears date 17th of September 1649, and the “ rentt 28. 2d. Item, for brede and wyne to owre Lady
volume ends in September 1651.

preste 7d. obol. Item, paid for a potelle wyne, a potte
A parchment rental, or rent-roll, finely written, with “ of ale, a 1d. cakys, 8d. Item, paid to the Portereve
the following title,-“Axebrugge-Rentale Gilda Aulæ “ for his dewte 468. 8d. There seems fair reason to
“ confratrum ibidem, anno regni Regis Henrici Septimi believe that the above named Harewell, working as a
“ decimo-octavo, tempore Willelmi Ewen et Willelmi reeder, or thatcher, was of the same family as John
“ Fychet, Senescallorum Gilda Aulæ prædictæ."

Harewell, Bishop of Bath and Wells, who built the
Similar Rolls, but on paper, for the 17th or 19th, 18th, south tower of the Cathedral, at Wells, and died a cen-
23rd, 24th, and 29th years of Henry VIII., and the 2nd tury and a half before.
and 3rd of Philip and Mary.

A parchment roll, badly written, and on one side almost The remaining Books of Account of the Guild Stewards,
wholly illegible, being the Accounts of the Guild that still survive, are as follow,-
Stewards of Axbridge for the 7th and 8th years of The Account of John Kemys and Thomas King. 13
Richard II., A.D. 1384, 5. It begins, — " Paschæ.

Henry VIII.
" Compotus Willelmi Marchise et Johannis Barlyck,

of John Boucher and Edward Coker, 15 Henry “ Senescallorum Gildæ de Axebrugge, a Festo Sancti

VIII. Tyburtii et Valentini, anno regni Regis Ricardi

Richard Bettley and Richard Nayno, 16, 17
“ septimo, usque idem Festum proximo tunc sequens.”

Henry VIII., a very lengthy set of accounts.
There are also two other parchment Rolls of accounts of

Richard Naynowe and Richard Bonde, 17, 18
the Guild Stewards in this reign; but the only entries

Henry VIII. are sums of money received for tenements, and their

Richard Betley and Richard Bonde, 18 Henry
contents are otherwise of no interest.

VIII.
A paper book, of large quarto size, containing about

Richard Bonde and Richard Betley, 19 Henry
150 leaves, bound in loose parchment. It begins with

VIII. a submission to the arbitration of the Portreve, and

Richard Betley and Richard Naynow, 20 Henry
admissions to the freedom, in the 17th year of Henry

VIII.
VIII. On the second leaf there are entries of the sales

Richard Betley and Richard Naynow, 21 Henry
of tenements by the Guild Stewards, or Masters of the

VIII.
Guildhall, in the 16th of Henry VIII. These, however,

Richard Naynow and John Bouchar, 22 Henry
were originally fly-leaves, for on the third leaf is an

VIII. entry nearly 50 years anterior in date, -" Thomas

- Rychard Betley and Rychard Bond, 23 Henry “ Penderin and John Parterigch, Eldestuardis of the

VIII. * Gilde Halle of Axburgge, anno regni Regis Edwardi

Rychard Bettley and Thomas Kyng, 24 Henry " Quarti, after the Conquest, xvii Zere." The accounts

VIII. At the top of this account is written, in then follow of “Walter Cadell and John Rogerus, Elde

a good hand,—"Jhu, fylly dey, mysarey mey." “ stuards of the Gylde Halle of Axbrugge, anno regni

phonetic for “Jesu, Fili Dei, miserere mei." Regis Edwardi, Quarti after the Conqueste, xviii

Rychard Bettley and Thomas Kyng, 25 Henry
“ Zere.” Then the accounts of John Fychet and Hew

VIII.
Foster 19 Edward IV., Water Cadell and John Hurze

Rychard Bettley and Thomas Kyng, 29 Henry
20 Edward IV., and Hew Foster and William Beny

VIII. 21 Edward IV. The last account is followed by some

John Kemes and Richard Pertriche, 38 Henry attestations of purchases of horses, before the Portreve,

VIII. In this Account, for A.D. 1546, items, in the 23rd of Henry VIII. ; the rest of the book being

amounting to 428. 6d., are still charged for filled with conveyances and leases in the same reign,

“ Obbittes." and rentals of the Guild Stewards temp. Henry VII.

Thomas Clotturboke and John Kynge, 2 Edward and VIII., some of which seem to be duplicates of other

VI. The payments for Obits no longer appear copies existing among these records.

(A.D. 1548.] There are numerous other paper books, generally in

Edward Coker and John Bouchar ; no date given, good condition, but without covers, containing the ac

but belonging probably to the 14th of Henry counts of the Yelde Stuards (Guild Stewards), or Masters

VIII. Attached to the account is a list of rents of the Guildhall. The oldest probably of these books is

paid by the tenantry of the Guild Hall for
headed, in abbreviated form,“ Jesu mercy," and then

several successive years.
continues, "Be hit in remembrance what payments
“ Thomas Cotelar, Thomas Kynge, doyth pay yu their It seems to have been the general custom with the in.
“ heyt.” Various miscellaneous payments are followed habitants of Axbridge, during the Middle Ages, upon a
by The Obyttes folowyng.” Then“ Be hyt in rem conveyance of real property being effected, for one or
« membrance what market-money Thomas Cotelar both the parties, vendor and vendee, to leave his
" Thomas King, doyth reseyyffe in theyr heyt." The counterpart of the indenture in the hands of the Town
word “Jhū" is written at the head of most of the pages. Clerk, or perhaps the Guild Stewards; probably for

The Account-book probably next in date is entitled, registration and safe custody : for on no other supposi-
“ Compptys of John Kemes and Thomas Wheller, in the tion, it would seem, can we account for the fact that
“ yere of our suffrayne Lord King Harrye ye VIII., there are still existing among the Corporation records
“ ye xiith yere of hys rayen.”

probably near a thousand deeds bearing reference to such
The only other one among these Books of Account transfers of property; in nine tenths of which cases the
from which time was found for making any extracts, was Guild-which then represented the Corporation-had
one consisting of about 20 leaves of paper. In one page no pecuniary interest whatever. These deeds range
is written,-" The boke of a compt of Ryc. Bettley and from the time of Henry III. or Edward I., down to the
Thomas Kyng, in the yere of the Sowraign Lord Kyng reign of Henry VII. or VIII., and are mostly sorted
Harry ye VIII. ye xxvii. of hys rayne;” and beneath, under the several reigns ; a work which, from the en-
“ So Ryc. Bettley and Thomas Kyng owyt for thys yer dorsements on some of them, would seem to have been
“ xvs. viiid.” Among the numerous items are the fol done from two to three centuries ago. With the excep-
lowing,–“ Paid for bred and vyne for our prest 3s. 4d. tion of about thirty, belonging to the reign of Henry VI.,
6. Item, paid to Glassyar for myndyng (mending] of the the whole of these documents were examined by me,
“ Lady window.”—Payments for “Obbettys." [Obits] and those mentioned in the following list were selected
follow; but the items seem mostly to be for building or for notice. They are in Latin, except in some few cases
repairing houses belonging to the Guild. Among the noticed.-
receipts are the following,-"Item, of Thomas Gye for Grant, with six seals appended, in good or fair con-
“ hys fathers graffe [grave] 38. 4d. Item, of Mr. dition, by Richard Oldemixone, of the County of Somer.
“ Houltley for hys fatheryes graffe —," Another page set, to Roger Seward, Giles Barton, William Hicche, of
begins, the leaves apparently having been negligently Axxebrugge, Henry Andelseye, William Oldemixone,
put together,-“ The boke of acompte of Rycharde Bet- and Robert Oldemixone, of his tenements, formerly be-

ley and Rycharde Pertryge, the yere off kynge Harrie longing to Henry Leigh, in Axebrugge, near the
" the VIII.te the xxy yere.” Among the payments Guildhall there, in which William Harewell and Agnes,
are the following items,-"Item, paid at the months his wife, were then living, for the term of the lives of
dyryge [dirgel the fyrste tyme 7d. Item, for xiii li. the said William and Agnes. Given at Axebrugge, the
" waxe at 6 d. to oure Lady Iy;th (light), with iii pri 5th of November, in the 1st year of Ricbard II. John
“ cates (perks, or prickets, for sticking candles upon] Langelond is named amyng the witnesses. William
" a pone owre Lady awter, with the makyng, 68. 8d. Harewelle, above-mentioned, was probably of the same
“ Item, paid to Harewell and Watere Schepherde for family as John Harewell, Bishop of Bath and Wells,
“ reddyng (reeding, or thatching] (at Boudy's howsse who was then (A.D. 1377] living, and is known to have
" 8d. Item, paid to the reve of Cheddre for more belonged to a family living at or near Axbridge.

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Grant by John Carpenter, of Axebrigge, and Cristina Jori, his wife, to John, son of Thomas the Fuller, of a “ celda” (seld, or open shed], on the east side of the said John's house, on payment of a rose yearly on the Day of the Nativity of John the Baptist, the sum of 58. 6d. having been already paid. There is no date, but the deed belongs probably to the early part of the reign of Edward I. It is remarkable for its two vesica shaped seals, both of them perfect, “S. Cristine Jori” being very distinct on one.

A small parchment indenture, whereby Brother Ni. cholas Tracey, Preceptor of the House of Temple Combe, and the Brethren thereof, release to Scolas. tica, widow of Richard de Writelington, a tenement in Wyntred, in the parish of Sipham (Shipham, near Axbridge). Witnesses, Sir William Maltbe, knight, William de Barne, Hugh de Holdelond, Richard Koker, Simon Balstone, John" then Chaplain of Combe," and others. Without date, but belonging to the reign of Edward I.

A deed poll on parchment, whereby Adam “Filius Johannis Dame Anneysesone," son of John Dame Agnes's son, of Axebrigge, conveys to William Bosce his tenement in More Lane there. Witnesses, Robert Trip, William de Bergwe, Ricbard Skaward, Thomas le Leghe, and Richard Doucebele (so called probably from Dulcibella, his mother's Christian name). The deed is without date, but belongs to the reign of Edward I. It may be here remarked that the surnames in Axbridge, mostly occurring in this reign, are Hotale, Scauward, Cogan, Tripp, and Gorway. The names denoting the trades of their owners are Tanner and Webbe, shewing that tanning and weaving were then carried on in the town.

A small parchment deed, with the seal appended, but the inscription effaced, whereby John le Leche of Axsebrugge grants to Nicholas le Pypere, of Banewell, and Robert Seward, of that place, a part of the curtilage which he had of William de Vanella (de Lane]. Without date, but belonging to the reign of Edward I. The name of John le Leche repeatedly occurs, and he was probably the “leech,” or doctor, of the place.

A long conveyance, on parchment, by William (Bitton, the First, or Second,] Bishop of Bath and Wells, to Ralph Hereward and Muriel, his wife, of three tenements and 10 acres in the manor of Ceddre. Witnesses, Edward the Dean, and others. The seal is much broken : the deed is without date, but belongs to the reign of Edward I.

A parchment deed, with three seals, in a perfect state, whereby Margery, now widow of Elias de Corscombe, and his executrix, Adam de Tetteborne, and Peter de Possebury, burgesses of Wells, convey to Stephen le Fowelare, of Axbridge, a messuage there, adjoining the tenement of Alicia de Wakeleigh, and the lane called “Horneslane." Given at Welles on Satur. day, the Feast of St. Matthew, in the 27th year of Edward III., several citizens of Axbridge being witnesses. The Wakeleys are found named more than once in this reign. The Mones (or Moons] also are frequently mentioned. John Langelond is a name that often occurs towards the close of the reign of Edward III., and so early as the 24th year of that reign : he had a mill in More Lor Moor] Lane. The name of Sir Hugh de Langelond repeatedly occurs at the beginning of that reign.

Grant, on parchment, by William Packere, to Wil. liam Salmon, of Cheddre, of a messuage in Axebrigge, with a 'morhaye,' in Portmannemede (now Portmead], 48 Edward III. John de Langelond and William Hare well are named among the witnesses. The morhayes' were allotments on the town moor, as being the burgesses', or portmen's, mead, separated no doubt by a * haie," or hedge; whence the name, which still sur. vives at Axbridge.

A small parchment deed, in Latin, with a large and fine seal attached. The following is a translation of it: -"To all the faithful in Christ to whom this present “ writing shall come, John de Clivedon, knight, lord " of Alre, greeting in the Lord. Whereas Thomas “ Salamon, of Cheddre, was lately claimed in my Court, as being a bondman born nativus] by blood, " yet do I, the said John, will and grant, for myself and “ my heirs, that the said Thomas shall be quit in future “ of all servitude and neifty, together with all his “ following and his issue; granting that he shall be

free and of free condition, without any claim by me " or my heirs, for ever. In witness whereof, to these " presents I have set my seal. Given at Alre, in the

County of Somer set, the 8th day of the month of

“ August, in the year of the reign of King Edward, CORPORA" after the Conquest the Third, the thirty-fourth.”

TION OP

AXBRIDGB. A small parchment deed, with a large seal attached, but the impression indistinct, whereby Alicia Bayllyf, relict of Richard Wakeleigh, conveys to Walter Gylle, of Axebrugge, and Elizabet, his wife, a tenement there, which she had of the gift of John Leche, of that place. Witnesses, Andrew Cane, John Mercer, the then Reve, and others, 26th Edward III. The name of this Alicia Wakeleigh, or de Wakely, is often met with, and that of Richard Wakeleigh also. Andrew Cane was evi. dently a man of eminence in the borough. His name is found as the attesting witness of probably more than a hundred of these deeds, and he was Provost, or Reve, of the town in the 22nd year, 24th, and 42nd, of Edward III.

A small parchment deed, with the seal attached, but broken, though tied up, apparently at a remote date; whereby John Agasse, of Loxtone, grants to John, son of Matilda Seman, a messuage in the South Street of Loxtone [near Axbridge). Witnesses, John de Weylond, Adam de Weylond, John de Draycote, John de Barton, John le Deneys, John de Oldemyxen, Richard de Oldemyxen, and others. Given at Loxtone, 22nd of Edward III.

A parchment deed, whereby Richard Maudit and Johanna, his wife, grant to John Moune and Editha, his wife, a house in the burgh of Axebrigge. Executed in the 12th year of Edward III. The two seals are gone, The interest of this document lies in the fact that a Latin memorandum, on parchment, is attached to it by a thread, setting forth, though in very indistinct writing, to the following effect, (tr.):-“ Johanna, the wife of “ Richard Maudit, of ... near Sudbiry, appeared in “ the church of Axebrigge, on Thursday the morrow of “ our Lord's Epiphany, in the year of our Lord 1338, " and made oath of her own free will upon the holy [Gospels] of God, and gave warranty that she would “ ratify, in case she should be living after the death of “ her said husband, a certain writing made by her said “ husband and herself unto John Moune and Editha, his “ wife, and not disquiet them in any way ; and that for “ ever she would not do, nor procure to be done, any" thing to their hindrance, nor do anything to prevent " them from holding the tenement, according to the “ form of the deed between them made.” Then follow the names of S. de Hulle, Chaplain, Richard Sely, John de Haveresham, John Cane, and one or two others, now illegible, as witnessing such her oath and warranty. John Cane was probably the father of Andrew, previously mentioned.

A parchment deed, whereby John Hayne, tanner, and Richard Culverhous, Stewards of the brethren, bur. gesses of Axebryge, on the Feast of Saints Fabianus and Sebastianus, attest that by the 13 Seniors of the town peace and concord had been made between Thomas Penryn and John Gryse, otherwise Jonys [Jones), their brethren, and that each had given acquittance to the other. The context (in Latin) then goes on to say ;“ and we, the Seniors aforesaid, for the great love that we do bear to both parties, to make and have peace and « concord between them. have given unto the aforesaid o John Gruse our h “ John Gryse, our brother, twenty shillings of lawful “ money, not for any right cause or action by him had " against the said Thomas our brother, but in order to « make them friends and of one mind . . . Given in " our Guild Hall.” No date is given, but the deed belongs to the latter part of the reign of Edward III. The two seals are nearly perfect. The surname of Penryn, it may be remarked, frequently occurs in the deeds of this period.

A small parchment deed, in Latin, the seal of which is lost; of the operative part, the following is a translation :-" To all the faithful in Christ to whom this “ present writing shall come, John Elys, of Netherwere “ Nether Weare, near Axbridge] greeting in the Lord. “ Know ye that I have given leave unto Agnes Jurdan “ to make the east wing of my hall, at her own cost; “ and that the said Agnes shall receive easement in a “ moiety of the said wing, without challenge by me or “ by my heirs : it being understood that the said Agnes “ shall cover my hall in whatever part she shall have “ uncovered it to make the said wing, and that the said Agnes and her heirs shall keep the said wing covered “ for ever. ... These being witnesses, John de “ Arderne, Robert Motoun, John Avery, and others. " Given at Were, on the Thursday next after the Feast

of Saint Laurence, in the year of the reign of King “ Edward the Third the nineteenth."

A deed, whereby John Hothale, burgess, gives to John Nye and Philip Wayte, Churchwardens of Axbridge, a

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