Keywords: London Durham commerce merchants ironmongers Maghfeld building materials money-lending debt records business transactions financial account expenditures commodities services gifts goldsmiths embroiderers stationers vintners victuallers chandlers painters armourers haberdashery transportation Boston fairs cloth skins fur spices wine food fish fruit hardware salt jewellery plate seals clothing weapons warfare medicine funerals
Subject: Vendors, lenders, sales, and purchases
Original source: 1. Public Record Office, King's Remembrancer, E101/509/19; 2. Public Record Office, Exchequer of Receipt, E403/439, 440; 3. Durham University Library Special Collections, Durham Cathedral Muniments GB-0033-DCD.
Transcription in: Edith Rickert, "Extracts from a Fourteenth-Century Account Book," Modern Philology, vol.24, (1926), 115-19, 249, 253; 2. Frederick Devon, Issue Roll of Thomas de Brantingham, Lord High Treasurer, 44 Edward III. London: Record Commission, 1835, passim; 3. Joseph Thomas Fowler, ed. Extracts from the Account Rolls of the Abbey of Durham, Selden Society, vols.99-100 (1898), 69-72, 494-96, 503-504.
Original language: 1. French; 2-3. Latin (2 translated by Devon)
Location: London, Durham
Date: 14th and 15th centuries


[1. Extracts from the business ledger of merchant Gilbert Maghfeld, 1390s]

Sir Thomas Percy owes as subsidy of 3s. per tun, in the ship of John Mayhew, as of 14 November 1391, on 7 tuns of wine 21s.
Adam Bamme, mayor of London, owes as of 15 May [1391] for a silk chaplet from Tripoli 13s.4d
John Hauley of Dartmouth owes as of 15 November [1391], to be repaid within a month under pledge of twenty thousand of long iron. £40
Margaret Spenser silkwoman of Sopers Lane, London, owes, by obligation of 6 March 1392, for 87¾ lb. of raw silk, which equals by mercery weight 65¾ lb. at 7s.6d. the pound.
£27 18s.
£9 6s. to be paid at on 24 June next. And on 29 September following that, £9 6s. And at Christmas following that, £9 6s. Of which have been received in goods 22s.
The Bishop of Winchester owes for three [sets of] millstones, at £3 the pair
Of which 1 pair to Esher, 1 pair to Farnham, and 1 pair remains on the quay of G. Maghfeld.
Of which, received from Lauynton clerk £3
On 15 July 1393 by the hands of John Brymmestone
And it is quit.
John Clerc of Boston owes what he received from the Earl of Derby, which was loaned to him in Prussia, with other folk of London, Lynn, and Boston (10 marks sterling each), being what the said John owes that he had received for me. £6 13s.4d.
R. de Blomvill £6 12s.6d.
Sir Thomas Worston, chancellor of my lord of York, owes for a loan, by obligation of 6 November [1394], to be repaid a fortnight after next Easter.
Which was [repaid?] by Richard Honyman, as indicated below.
Robert Corke esquire of [the household of] my lord the Duke of Gloucester owes, as of 23 March [1394], for freight and valuation of a pipe of wine which was in the ship of Juan Sanches of Spain 12s. 4d
Memorandum that I loaned to the Guildhall, on 12 December 1392, paid into the hands of Henry Vanner 20 marks
Also, a loan to William Staundon mayor, which was for the Earl of Huntingdon 10 marks
Also, loaned for the mumming to the king at Eltham at Christmas 40s.
Item, by G. Maghfeld for Saint Anton, for three quarters of wainscot 15s.
Item, from Gilbert Maghfeld for half a hundred wainscot 10s.
Item, delivered to Macclesfeld for Saint Anton, 20 wainscot
(voided because paid to R. Honyman)
Item, delivered for the paving of Saint Anton, 4 thousand paving-tiles.
Item, paid by J. Schirbrok to two pavers and their assistant, and for sand and refreshments for two days
Memorandum that Gilbert Maghfeld paid at Christmas [1390] to porters, for [transporting] the gravestone of the Bishop of Exeter and for 1 bell, 1 chest, to the group of them 28d.
Item, paid to long John for transporting the said stone to the ship 16d.
Item, paid for 4 lb. 7 oz. of green ginger, at 26d. the lb., by his buyer 9s.7d
Item, for a messenger regarding the stone and the other things 2s.
Sir Thomas More clerk owes for gold rings £4
Henry Scoggan owes for a loan on 2 September, as per an obligation, to be repaid on the feast [of Michaelmas?] 26s. 8d.
Master >Henry Yevele owes for millstones [September 1390] £6
One obligation made to Henry Yevele on 18 March 1395
to be paid on 15 December following, on behalf of the Bishop of Ely
Master Henry Yevele owes for 6 hundred[weight] 3 quarters 14 lb. of lead, at 10 marks the fother 42s. 3d.
Memorandum that Gilbert Maufeld paid, on behalf of John Gower esquire,
to a shipman for the freight of a brass pot, sent by lighter from Lynn to London
Also he paid previously for carriage by water of a chest, sent to the said John at Hull 4d.
John Gower Esquire for a loan made by obligation on the eve of St. John Baptist, to be paid within the next three weeks £3 6s.8d.
Geoffrey Chaucer owes, for a loan made on 18 July [1392] to be repaid the following Saturday 26s.8d
Thomas Newenton, one of the sheriffs of London, owes as of 12 July [1392], for a tun of white wine, ungauged 6 marks
Also he owes, as of the day the sheriffs make their parade [30 September], for 1 beaver hat
(elsewhere, because in scavage)
Memorandum that in the month of August 1393 Jankyn Beauchamp plumber became indebted to us for 7 hundredweight 4 lb. of lead. Also he owes for delivery to him, by Thomas Craft, 405 hundredweight of old lead. Of which we have received, through Thomas, 400 hundredweight of new. And of which we have received from him, in new lead for Billingsgate, 10 hundredweight 4 lb.
Item, received 1 fillet of lead for the gutter of the lavatory in the hall of 106 hundredweight 6 lb.
Item we have received at various times for Billingsgate and for our house at the same 8½ hundredweight 13 lb.
Of which he has received from us 1 fother of old lead 11 hundredweight 14 lb.
Item, we have received in new lead [for the] cistern for Pudding Lane 1½ hundredweight 1 lb. Also 18 lb. of solder.
Item, we owe him for the construction of the aforesaid, for solder, and carriage
sum total
30s. 2d.

[2. Select entries, pertaining to towns or townspeople, from an account of royal expenses, 1370]

22 April
To Roger de Kendale and John Blyth, parchment-makers, of Lincoln. In money paid to them, for a hundred dozen of parchments, price the dozen 2s. 6d, purchased from them for the King's use, as well for [recording] the expenses of the Privy Seal as for the expenses of the office of Remembrancer of the Exchequer, and for the receipt of the same Exchequer

22 April
To Henry de Yeveley, a plasterer, sent to various parts to retain divers plasterers, to be sent over in the retinue of the Lord the King beyond seas. In money delivered to him, by his own hands, for the wages of 25 plasterers coming to London, there dwelling and awaiting the passage and will of the King for 9 days, each of them receiving 6d. per day
£5 12s. 6d

22 April
To Stephen Atte Merssh, smith, sent to different parts to retain divers smiths, to be sent over in the retinue of the Lord the King beyond the sea. In money paid to him, by his own hand, for the wages of 25 smiths coming to London, there dwelling and awaiting the passage and pleasure of the Lord the King for 9 days, each of them receiving 6d. per day
£5 12s.6d.

26 April
To the good Men of the Town of Norwich, by divers tallies raised this day, containing 1000 marks, delivered to the same men, by their own hands, in discharge of the 1000 marks which they lent to the Lord the King, at the receipt of Exchequer, on the 23d day of April last past, as appears in the roll of receipts of the same day
£666 13s.4d

27 April
To Hawesia le Mattewife. In money paid to her, by the hands of John Bray, for brooms and mats purchased from her, as well for the Great Exchequer as for the Receipt of the Exchequer

16 May
To John Crull, of the parish of St. Clement, London, sent with letters of Privy Seal, directed to the sheriff of Lincoln, the mayors and bailiffs of the towns of Saint Botulph, of Barton-upon-Humber, of Beverley, of Lincoln, of Kingston-upon-Hull, of York, and of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. In money delivered to him for his expenses
£1. 6s.8d.

16 May
To Richard the parchment-maker of Newerk. In money delivered to him by the hands of John Capon, for 50 dozen of parchment, price the dozen 2s. 10d., purchased from him for the King's use, as well for [recording] the expenses of the Privy Seal as for the receipt and office of Remembrancer of the Exchequer
£7 s.18d.

20 May
To William Tench, of the parish of Saint Clement, London, sent with writs of the Great Seal and letters of Privy Seal directed to the Bishop of Salisbury, and Bishop of Bath and Wells, or their deputies, to certify the names of the Collectors of the tenth, and that the tenth in their dioceses wholly shall be paid at the receipt of the Exchequer without allowance, by tallies to be made assignable for the same tenth ; and also with letters of Privy Seal directed to the Mayors and Bailiffs of the town of Winchester, and Bailiffs of the town of Bristol, to borrow and contract for money for the King's use. In money paid to him for his expenses

28 May
To John Philippot and William Stodey,of the city of London. In money delivered to them, in discharge of £40, which they lent to the Lord the King, at the receipt of the Exchequer, on the 25th day of May last past – to wit, the said John £30, and the aforesaid William 10£, as appears in the roll of receipts of the same day

29 May
To Simon de Morden and William de Walleworth, citizens of the city of London. In money to them delivered, in discharge of £300, which they lent to the Lord the King, at the receipt of the Exchequer, on the 25th day of May last past – to wit, the said Simon £200, and the aforesaid William £100, as appears in the roll of receipts of the same day

31 May
To John Salman, merchant. In money received by him of the Treasurer and Chamberlains, for the hire of ships from Holand and Zeland, for the passage of Robert Knolles and his retinue to Normandy
£66 13s.4d.

31 May
In money paid for porterage and boatage of £6000 from Westminster to the Tower, there delivered to John de Thorp to make divers payments by order of the Chamberlains

19 June
To John Northampton and William Baret of the city of London. In money delivered to them, in discharge of £20, which they lent to the Lord the King, at the receipt of the Exchequer, on the 25th day of May last past – to wit, the said John £10, and the aforesaid William £10, as appears in the roll of the receipts of the same day

19 June
To the good men of the Town of Ipswich. In money delivered to them, in discharge of £20, which they lent to the Lord the King, at the receipt of the Exchequer, on the 18th day of June last past, as appears in the roll of receipts of the same day

21 June
To Sir James de Rues, Knight, ambassador of the King of Navarre, coming on an embassy on behalf of the same King of Navarre, for the value of a cup silver gilt and enamelled, of the price of £12 19s, purchased of John Walssh, goldsmith of London, delivered to the same James with £50 in gold nobles of the King's gift
£62 19s.

22 June
To the good men of the Town of Lynn. In money delivered to them, in discharge of £200, which they lent to the Lord the King at the receipt of the Exchequer on the 19th day of June last past, as appears in the roll of receipts of the same day

27 June
To John de Grafton, haberdasher, of London. In money paid to him for parchment purchased of him for the King's use – to wit, for 10 dozen and a half, price the dozen 4s., for the books of receipt of the Exchequer, and for 25 dozen, price the dozen 3 s., purchased from the same John, as well for the great Exchequer as for the office of Privy Seal
£5 17s.2d.

11 July
To Havinus Van Pannys, a knight of Germany, for the price of a cup, silver, gilt and enamelled, purchased of Chichester, the goldsmith, of London, price £7. 16s., with 50 marks in gold nobles which the Lord the King commanded to be given to the same Havinus, of his gift £33 6s.8d.

13 July
To Hugh Fastolf. In money received by him of the collector of the King's customs and subsidies in the port of Great Yarmouth, for payment of the seamen's wages from the mouth of the Thames unto the port of Lynn, for the passage of Robert Knolles and his retinue to France

22 July
To Henry de Wakefield, keeper of the King's wardrobe, by the hands of Ralph de Knyveton. In money received by the same Ralph from the Collectors of the King's Customs and Subsidies in the port of Kingston-upon-Hull, for providing corn in the northern parts for the expenses of the King's household

27 July
In money paid for 4 pounds of cord purchased to bind a certain basket with cups and vessels to be sent to Claryndon

27 July
To John de Chalton, of London. In money delivered to him for a cart with 6 horses hired from him for carrying the same basket, with beds and divers other vessels of the King's household, to Claryndon and Salisbury

13 September
To William Payn, master of a ship called the Mighele of [South]Hampton, for the portage of 120 pipes (of wine.) In money delivered to him by the hand of Robert de Wouborne for his wages, and one constable, each of them receiving 6d. per day, and 30 mariners, each at 3d. per day, for 7 days
£2 19s.6d.

15 September
To Walter Forester, citizen of London. In money delivered to him, in discharge of £500, which the Lord the King commanded to be delivered to him for all the lands and tenements which belonged to the same Walter in the towns of Rotherhythe, Bermondesey, and Grenewich, in the counties of Surrey and Kent, purchased from him to the use of the same Lord the King

15 September
To the same Walter. In money delivered to him, in discharge of 40 marks which the Lord the King commanded to be delivered to him for 10 tymbers of Ermine, purchased from him for the King's use
£26 13s.4d.

15 September
To Peter Conynger, bailiff of the King's manor of Rutherhuyth, for the price of divers goods and chattels received by him from Walter Forster to the King's use for the stock of the manor aforesaid
£33 13s.4d.

20 September
[...] to Ralph de Poly, Vice-Admiral of the northern fleet, for divers necessary expenses – to wit, planks, nails, iron, and other things purchased by the same Ralph, and provided for the shipping of 8,464 horses, taking for each horse 2d., by agreement made with the same Ralph, according to the order of the Council
£70 10s.8d.
to Thomas de la Rye and John his companion, for 11 schoutes hired from them to take the horses from the land to the ships, for shipping the same, by a certain agreement made with them
to Thomas Taillor of La Rye and his companions, for timber bought of them for planks, nails, and iron, to make bridges thereof, to ship the horses, for the expenses of the carpenters, carriage of the same bridges, and for other necessary expenses made by him in his account, in the presence of the King's council
£61. 8s.4d.
for the hire of three horses from London to Rye, to carry 5000 marks, 4 yards and a half of russet cloth to cover the said money packages, expenses of the horses, and three grooms, leading the same horses there, and from thence back to London
20s. 2½d.

6 October
To the same Keeper [of the King's wardrobe], by the hands of Joan Atte Ware. In money delivered to the same Joan, for a purse purchased of her at Windsor for Philippa, Queen of England £6 13s. 4d.

6 October
To John de Ketelby, parchment-maker, of Lincoln. In money delivered to him, by the hands of John, his boy, for 105 dozen of parchments, purchased from him for the King's use, price of each dozen 2s. 9d., as well for [recording] the expenses of the Privy Seal of the Lord the King, as for the expenses of the Remembrancer of the Exchequer, and the Receipt of the same Exchequer
£14 8s.9d.

6 October
To Lord de Leek, a Knight, coming as a messenger on behalf of the Duke of Albright, with letters directed to the Lord the King of England, for the price of one cup, with an ewer, silver gilt, enamelled, of the price of £24 2s.8d., purchased of John Walsh, goldsmith, of London, and delivered to the same Lord as of the King's gift
£24 2s.8d.

9 October
To John de Balton, of Westminster. In money delivered to him, by his own hands, for a chest bought from him for the King's use, to put in divers memoranda and other things touching the same Lord the King, to be placed in the accountants' chamber at the Receipt, and there to be safely and securely kept
£2 6s.8d.

9 October
To Thomas de Gloucester, glover. In money delivered to him, for bags and key-bands purchased from him for the King's use, as well to hang the keys of the Receipt of the Exchequer on as those of the Tower of London, safely and securely to be kept in the bags aforesaid

12 November
To John de Grafton, haberdasher, of Saint Paul's. In money paid to him, as well for parchment, hanapers, and skipetts, to put in divers indentures, processes, and other memoranda concerning the same Lord the King, and in the custody of the Treasury, as for red wax, paper for accounts, ink, and divers things purchased from him for the King's use before the feast of Easter last past
£1 16s.7d.

3 December
To Robert Salle, haberdasher, of London. In money delivered to him by the hands of Guido de Rouclyf, in discharge of the 58s. due to him for red wax, and other small necessaries, bought of him for the office of Privy Seal
£2 18s.

4 December
To Roger Crane, parchment-maker. In money delivered to him by his own hands, for parchment, hanapers, red wax, account books, and other small necessaries bought of him for the King's use, by the hands of the chamberlains and ushers of the receipt
8s. 6d.

[3. Purchases by a monastic house]

[Bursar's account, ca. 1299]

Purchases made in Durham and Darlington

For 102 lb. of wax bought at various times in Durham, £4 3s.6d.
For three pounds of saffron bought, 16s.3d.
For 4 lb. of fennel, 2 lb. of peony, 3 lb. of anise, 4s.2d.
For 9 tuns of wine bought at Hull, 7 tuns at Hartlepool and Newcastle, including ullage, windage, and transportation, £36 7s.
For two tuns of wine bought from William Servat on two occasions, £6.
For 63½ gallons of wine bought in town on various occasions, 31s.
For 5 gold rings bought, 11s.8d.
For the carriage of a tun of wine from Berwick to Durham, 13s.10d.
For 4 ells of canvas bought for the porter of the pantry, 11½d.
For 100 lb. of almonds bought, 24s.
For 10 lb. of rock sugar purchased from William Servat, 36s.8d.
Delivered to the steward and R. de Cokson for their robes, 106s.8d.
For 1 fur bought for John de Hoton, 3s.6d.
For 206 ells of canvas bought to make wool-sacks, 56s.11¼d.
For 16 ells of bluet bought at Darlington, 32s.
For the purchase of cloth for the foresters and paupers, 71s.
For 16 ells of russet bought there, 13s.4d.

Purchases made at the Boston fair in the year [12]99

For 20 ells of burnet bought for the Prior and his colleagues, £4 8s.½d.
For 5 cloths bought for the use of the clerics, £26.1d.
For 4 cloths and 3 robes for the squires, £22 7s.9d.
For 27 ells of Lincoln say for the Prior and his colleagues, 65s.6d.
For 4 cloths for the officials and servants of the manors, £11 6s.9d.
For 4 ells for the tunic of W. de Scaccario, 7 ells for the robes of W. de Hoton and Th. de Dalton, 30s.8d.
For 4 cloths bought for the grooms, £7 4s.½d.
For 138 ells of paupers' cloth, 118s.6d.
For 100 ells of canvas bought, 41s.3d.
For two ells of sendal, 2s.8d.
For 5 furs of strendling, 52s.6d.
For 8 squirrel furs, 44s.
For 24 lamb pells, 72s.
For a fur of budge for the Prior, 8s.
For 5 furs of miniver for hoods, 33s.
For 6 furs of strendling for hoods, 22s.
For 6 lamb pells for hoods, 6s.
For 6 ells of card bought, 2s.6d.
For 200 lb. of wax bought, £8
For 400 lb. of almonds, 63s.
For 155 lb. of rice, 21s.6d.
For 50 lb. of ginger, 66s.8d.
For 26 lb. of rock sugar, 52s.
For 25 lb. of Moroccan sugar, 20s.10d.
For 14 lb. of saffron, £4 18s.
For two gourds of ginger, 26s.8d.
For 4 lb. of galangal, 4 lb. of cinnamon, 15 lb. of pepper, 57s.
For 1 lb. of cloves, 4 lb. of
zedoary, 12 lb. of cumin, 15s.6d.
For 6 lb. of fennel, 4 lb. of anise, 3 lb. of peony, 3s.2½d.
For 86 ells of table-cloth, 71 ells of towel, 74s.5d.
For 72 ells of linen cloth, 21s.3¼d.
For the purchase of knives, 8s.6d.
For a banker bought for the Prior, 5s.
For one dozen wicker baskets, half a dozen of tawed leather, 22s.
For ten dozen parchments, 4 dozen gloves, 23s.6d.
For one chest newly bought, 4s.7¼d.
For haircloth and rope, 9s.1d.
For tronage, transportation, and packing [of wool]
For boats from Boston to Aldwark, and carts to Torksey, 20s.8d.
For the expenses of the bursar and those with him, going to and returning from Boston, £6 9s. 8½d.

Expenses of William and John regarding wool

For the cost of carts and horses carrying wool from Bewley to York, 14s.4d.
For transport of the wool from York to Boston, including porterage, 19s.5d.
For cloth and string, rental of a house, together with the expenses of Adam and Hugh taking care of the wool after William departed, 15s. 10½d.
For the expenses of William, Johh, A., and H., and those with them, going and returning and during their stay, 70s.¾d.

Expenses of the bursar and William

For transportation and porterage of wool from Boston to Lincoln, including storage and tronage, 17s.10½d.
To Haukyn Fleming for brokerage, 18s.
For the expenses of the bursar and William, going and returning and during their stay, £4 4s.3d.

Herring and dogdraves

For 400 dogdraves, 4,000 herring, £6 8s.8½d.
For 13 lasts and 4,000 herring bought at Jarrow, with salt, firewood, and all other related items, £29 17s.2d.

[Bursar's account 1302-03]

Expenditures made at the Boston fair etc. 1303.

[A section, omitted by Fowler, concerning purchases of burnet, russet, paupers' cloth, canvas, sheep-fells, budge, strendling, squirrel fur, miniver, linen cloth, baskets.]
For 76 ells of bolting cloth, 13s.
For 6 cushions, 3s.6d.
For 4 pairs of woollen gloves, 2s.4d.
20 lb. of saffron, 110s.
22 lb. of ginger, 55s.
4 lb. of zedoary, 5s.
4 lb. of galangal, 10s.8d.
4 lb. of cinnamon, 5s.4d.
2 lb. of cloves, 6s.
1 lb. of mace, 3s.
half a pound of cubebs, 4s.
1 lb. of nutmegs, 16d.
25 lb. of peppers, 20s. 10d.
4 lb. of peony, 4 lb. of fennel, 4 lb. of anise, 22d.
38 lb. of rock sugar, 34s.10d.
30 lb. of Moroccan sugar, 12s.6d.
7 boxes of ginger, 40s.
7 boxes of peony, 12s.
One pair of knives bought for the Prior, 5s.
For the purchase of haircloth and rope, 12s.2d.
For packing and porterage, 3s.1d.
For boats hired from Lincoln to Boston, and for the return, 3s.
For carts hired from Lincoln to Torksey, together with loading of the carts, 4s.
For boats hired from Torksey to Aldwark, 12s.5d.
Expenses of Philip and Burely de Torkesay [going] as far as Aldwark with the boats and from Aldward to Durham with the carts, 14s.5d.
Carriage of wool from Pit. to Boston, together with the expenses of W. de Scaccario and those with him, 54s.4d.
For a house rented at Boston for storing the wool, 12d.
Expenses of the bursar going to and returning from Boston, and for his stay there, £6 12s.6½d.
To the bailiffs of the Earl of Brittany for default of suit of court of the houses at Boston, 13s.4d.
To Roger Bacun for arrears of the rent of those houses, 8s.
[A section, omitted by Fowler, concerning textiles and furs bought in London, York, Darlington, and Durham.]
For 40 ells of canvas bought in Durham for packaging the wool, 54s.
For two dozen rings bought in Durham, 42s.
[A section, omitted by Fowler, concerning purchases of wine, herring, dogdraves, horses, cattle, malt, barley, oats, and horse-fodder.]

[Cellarer's account, 1438/39]

Purchases of oil, honey, butter, and lard.

First, for 6½ gallons of honey bought from Robert Hull of Lanchester, 6s.6d.
Item, for 2 [gallons] from Thomas Shele of Stelley, 22d.
2 from Robert Hall, 22d.
5 from John Alnewyk of Walrige, 5s.
9 from William Alman of Neuton, at 11d. per gallon, 9s.3d.
11 from William Emotson of Neuton, at 11d. per gallon, 10s.1d.
Item, for 3 gallons of oil bought from Thomas Castell of Newcastle, 46s.8d.
Item, for 5 stone of butter bought by Thomas de Hall, at 16d. per stone, 6s.8d.
5 stone bought in town by the caterer, 6s.5d.
1 stone bought in town by Richard Warcopp, 15d.
17½ stone of white lard bought from William Archer, at 18d. per stone, 26s.2½d.
4 stone of white lard bought from John Fleschewer of the Old Borough, at 18d. per stone, 6s.
Total: &163;7 12s. 8½d.

Purchases of fish

First, for 5,000 red herring bought from William Bromptoft of Hartlepool, at 8s. [the thousand], 40s.
Item, one last of red herring bought from the same, at 10s.6d., 105s.
6,000 red herring from the same at 6s.8d., 40s.
4,000 at 7s., 28s.
2,000 from Geoffrey Mawer, 20s.
7,000 from the widow of Robert Bone of Hartlepool, at 10s., 70s.
Item, 1 barrel of white herring bought from Geoffrey Mawer, 9s. 9 barrels from John Anbell of Newcastle, at 9s.9d. [each], £4 7s.9d.
Item, 140 dogdraves bought from John Robynson and Geoffrey Mawer, at 6d. per head, £4
105 dogdraves bought from John Whitheuyd of the same town, at 5½d per head, 105s.10d. [sic]
63 bought from Patrick Saundyrson of Hartlepool, at 7½d. per head, 37s.6d.
162 bought from Geoffrey Mawer, at 3¼d. per head, 63s. [sic]
20 bought from John Geryng, 6s.8d.
22 from Thomas Short of the same [town], at 7d. per head, 12s.6d.
For 80 from Richard Ford of the same, at 8d. per head, 53s.4d.
For 200 from Richard Bromptoft of the same, at 8d. per head, £8
10 from Geoffrey Mawer at 6d. per head, 5s.
Item, for 100 stockfish bought from John Barker of Newcastle, at 2d. per head, 20s.
For five dozen and 8 salted salmon bought from dom. John Har, 16s.
17 dozen of the same, at 3s. per dozen, 51s.
13 dozen and 6 salmon bought by dom. John Byrtley, 59s.6d.
Item, for two "hamyr" barrels bought from the widow of John Norham, 36s.
Item, for 6 salted eels bought from John Salton, 3s.2d.
Item, for 20 stockfish bought from the same, 5s.
Total: £55 14s.3d.

Purchases of spices

First, for 1 dozen of pepper bought from John Grosier of London, at 16d. per lb., 16s.
Item, for 12 lb. bought from Thomas Fyshburn, at 13d. per lb., 13s.
For 1 dozen from John Anbell, at 14d. per lb., 14s.
For 2 lb. from John Salton, 3s.
Item, for 2 lb. of saffron from Thomas Gaynford, 26s.8d.
For 1 lb. from John Laxe of Chester, 14s.
2 lb,. from Robert Marschall of London, 26s.8d.
1 lb. from John Anbell, 14s.
1 lb. from the servant of Robert Marschall, 14s.6d.
1 quarter[-pound] from Thomas Fyshburn, 3s.4d.
Item, for a hundred of almonds bought from John Salton, at 3¼d. per lb., 32s.6d.
16 dozen from the same, 4s.10d.
A hundred from Robert Marshall of London, 30s.
Item, for 3 lb. of cloves from John Anbell, 7s.6d.
Item, for 2 lb. of mace from the same, 5s.
Half a pound from John Salton, 16d.
Item, for 2 sorts of figs and raisins bought from William Dysburgh of Newcastle, 32s.
16 lb. of figs from John Salton, 2s.
4 lb. of raisins from the same, 8d.
14 lb. of dates from the same, at 5d. per pound, 5s.10d.
6 lb. from Thomas surn, 2s. 12 lb. of rice bought from John Salton, 3s.3d.
6 lb. from John Grosier of London, at 1½d. per lb., 9d.
1 lb. of ginger from John Lax of Chester, 12d.
2 lb. of sandal-wood from John Anbell, 3s.4d.
1 lb. of currants from John Salton, 4d.
6 lb. from John Grosier of London, 2s.
2½ barrels of onions bought from John Anbell of Newcastle, 4s.7d.
Total: £14 4s.1d.



First, for 40 stone of Spanish iron bought from John Anbell, at 6d. [per stone], 20s.
Item, for 8 stone 2 lb. of Spanish iron bought from John Gateshed, bursar, 4s.10d.
Item, to Richard Smyth for working 14 stone of the aforesaid iron, taking by contract 2½d. per stone, 2s.11d.
Item, for locks and keys bought, with adjustments to the same, 23d.
Item, for 2 dozen candlewicks bought for white candles, 2s.6d.
Item, for 18 lb. of wax bought, at 4½d. per lb., 6s.8½d.
Item, for 1 barrel of pitch bought from John Anbell of Newcastle, 5s.
Item, for 12 stone of tallow and 5 stone of fat skimmings, bought for white candles and sheep-salve, 13s.9d.
And to Richard Sadler for 2 new saddles and 2 new bridles bought, together with repairs to saddles, bridles, and other necessaries pertaining to the office of cellarer, 15s.10d.
Item, to Robert Maldott for two bridle bits, with girth-straps and 4 buckles bought for the same, 2s.3d. Item, for 1 small wagon, two wheels, 3 yokes, 1 plough, and 1 box-cart, together with sieves and other iron instruments pertaining to the aforesaid, bought from John Halywell of Witton, 9s.5d.
Total: £4 5s.½d.


Necessary expenses


For cutting, gathering, and getting in the hay in various locations, together with carriage of 120 cartloads of that hay to Durham, Relly, and Aldin Grange, 59s.7d.
For the expenses of the cellarer and his servants riding into the county of Northumberland, on three occasions, for the sale of tithes and collection of rents, and as far as Newcastle to buy oil, salt, tallow, and herring, and as far as Hartlepool and Sunderland to buy victuals, and elsewhere in the region during the period covered by this account, with expenses incurred at three hall-moot courts held during the period of the account, 52s.5d.
And for the expenses of John Byrtley riding into the county of Northumberland to buy salmon, and undertake other opportune business, 9s.1d.
And of William Ward [and 6 others] with their carts, carrying saltfish, salted salmon, herring, and other victuals from Newcastle, Hartlepool, [South] Shields, and Sunderland to Durham, including 3s.4d. for the freight of salted salmon from Berwick to Newcastle and 17d. for porterage, 27s.6d.
And for the hire of horses from William Lacy of Durham for carrying red herring from Hartlepool to Durham, 2s.4d.
Item, for 1 dozen parchments bought together with 4 quires of paper, for rolls, indentures, booklets, and other necessaries related to the exchequer, 4s.1½d.
And for 1 barrel of coarse salt from Poitou, bought by John Byrtley at 2s. paid for the salt by the same, 8s.6d.
And for 1 quarter of coarse salt from Poitou bought from Thomas Papedy of Newcastle, 10s.
And for 5 barrels of coarse salt from Poitou bought from Thomas Smyth of Newcastle, 35s.
And for 14 quarters of salt at Durham and Coupon, that is, from William Lacy of Durham and Thomas Shephird of Coupon, John Shephird, Richard Thoronton, Thomas Thoronton [all] of the same, and William Lawson of Billingham, 51s.1d.
And for the carriage of that salt to Durham, 11s.1d.
And for 12 rakes bought from William Fayrhall of Broom, 7d.
And for 2 dozen pewter vessels bought from the men of York, together with the purchase of wooden vessels this year, and also 20 doublers and dishes of pewter bought from Thomas Marshall, 36s.7d.
And for the making of flour within the period of this account, 12d.
And for 35 quarters, 6 bushels, 2 pieces of salt bought from the tenants of Coupon, from the farm of their salt-works there due annually, at 4d. per quarter, £7 3s.4d.
And in money paid to Thomas Salter of Durham for the carriage of two hundreds of almonds from York to Durham, 3s.5d.


A medieval merchant

Gilbert Maghfeld (or Maunfeld as often spelled) was primarily, and officially, an ironmonger, although like many merchants he was neither in such a dominating position in his trade nor so blinkered as to restrict his business activities to goods of one particular type. The successful merchant was the one who could judge his opportunities well, and Gilbert exemplifies the kind of merchant who helped make London the economic capital of England, as well as the kind vulnerable to the risks of a mercantile system reliant on credit transactions.

If we assume that Maghfeld's name derives from the East Sussex village of Mayfield, situated near the River Rother, and take note of his known connections with Tonbridge, a Kentish centre of iron-working in the fourteenth century, then it can be speculated that Gilbert's early career may have benefited from the needs of the ship-building industry at Small Hythe (southern Kent) and along the Thames. He probably acquired some of his iron from the Kentish Weald, although is also seen importing from Bayonne and from Spain; in the last years of his career he shows no sign of having dealt in iron sourced from northern Europe, although one of his cellars was known as the 'osmundhous', referring to the type of iron produced in Sweden. Mayfield was, in the first half of the fourteenth century, making the transition from a village to a small market town serving the Wealden; a rental of ca. 1285 makes no mention of market stalls and the 1296 subsidy listed only 27 households, yet a fire in 1388/89 damaged 85 shops, which probably represent the expansion and development of stalls. In the context of this commercial growth, traders who prospered were naturally drawn towards the greener pastures of London.

Alongside the iron predominant in his cargoes, Gilbert also imported whatever potentially profitable goods were available in the foreign markets: wine, furs, and spices, and on occasion wax, copper, millstones, Lombardy woad, and Swedish herring, while his own business records show lead, lumber, coal, and a wide range of other commodities passing through his hands, perhaps as middleman rather than importer. His documented exports were grain and cloth. He also bought stockfish imported via Boston, and shipped it down to London, selling it, along with the herring, both to city fishmongers and direct to consumers. Wine was even safer as an investment for most any London merchant, due to the high demand for it in the capital, and Gilbert's customers included a number of religious houses within and close by the city, a couple of bishops who had cause to maintain city residences, and sheriffs of some of the home counties; such customers tended to buy large quantities. In fact, so heavily was Maghfeld involved in the wine trade that in November 1379 he was associated with a group of vintners and others in a commission carry out a search of wine cellars and wine shops in the city, as well as chandlers' shops, to root out and dispose of wine, vinegar, or sauces based on those liquids, found to be of substandard quality. Gilbert's overseas ventures were often undertaken with partners, a common approach to spreading costs, labour, and risks, and those with whom he did business doubtless included the wine merchants from La Rochelle to whom he acted as host each year.

Maghfeld catered to a wide range of customers for his merchandize and clients for his money-lending. Rickert [p.115] summarizes them as including:

"scores of merchants of London and other English towns, representing more than thirty guilds, besides merchants of Prussia ... of La Rochelle, of Bayonne and Bordeaux, of Italy and Spain.... a score or so of knights and squires in royal households, sergeants-of-arms, clerks in the Exchequer and Chancery, several controllers in the Custom House ..., two "men of law," many chaplains and parsons, including nearly a dozen great ecclesiastics.... he dealt also with the Earl of Derby, the Duke of York, the Duke of Gloucester, and, possibly once, even the King himself."

In 1390 the goods he handled were worth £1,150 (though this is unlikely to represent cash-in-hand), suggesting he would have stood out among the ironmongers, although he himself barely merited that descriptor any longer; already, in 1376, he had been one of three ironmongers chosen by his fellows to serve on a Common Council drawn from the crafts.

The chosen trade affiliation of Gilbert, or Gybon as he referred to himself (and was once referred to in the city Letter-Books), did not place him in the very top ranks of London society, for the ironmongers were not among the mercantile elite, and only a handful of them attained aldermannic status in the Middle Ages. Indeed, Maghfeld was the first ironmonger to do so, when he became (during a period when annual election was the norm and more than just a formality) alderman in 1382 for Billingsgate ward, where he and his wife Margery had been living for years, having in 1372 taken out a long lease on a property in St. Botolph's parish between Thames Street and the river; the property included a wharf. Even so Gilbert was not the electors' original choice, for Nicholas Exton had been chosen at the March election, but he was removed from office in August as part of mayor John de Northampton's efforts to displace rivals from positions of power, the removal of Philpot following later in the year. If, however, the elevation of Maghfeld in place of Exton was part of Northampton's machinations, it does not seem that Maghfeld was a particularly active supporter of the Northampton faction, for he was not later embroiled in the legal prosecutions once Brembre's party regained power; yet Maghfeld was replaced as alderman, in March 1383, by a Brembre supporter, and the Letter-Book entry relating to Maghfeld's election was struck out.

This reversal does not seem to have adversely affected Maghfeld's business. In 1386 he was able to extend his Billingsgate property interests, at least temporarily, by joining with two other men in holding part of the Billingsgate quay further east, along with adjacent tenements, which included two shops in Bridge Street (with a reversion of a third) and a house in Pudding Lane with two cellars, to the north-west of where he lived. Some of the account items given above relate to work conducted by a plumber on his property: installation in his hall of a wash-stand with a drain to the exterior, and perhaps some work on his wharf; other items (not given above) show the preparation of timbers and the work of a carpenter and masons on building, or rebuilding, his wharf. He also held property and a quay at Woolwich, where he probably had a warehouse. Like many wealthy merchants he invested some of his profits in rural property, mainly in Kent, though also in other home counties, and his real estate interests in London were spread among several parishes. He may not have retained aldermannic status, but he was still considered a prominent citizen, sitting on the Common Council again in 1383-84 as a representative of Billingsgate, summoned to the Guildhall in July 1385, again as a representative of his ward, to discuss with mayor and aldermen measures for coastal defence, and in August 1388 as a representative of his craft, to consult with the same about matters to be addressed at the coming parliament.

A new political opportunity for Maghfeld arose a decade later, when in March 1392 he was once more elected alderman for Billingsgate ward; he would remain there to the beginning of 1397. However, at the time of his election the London authorities were in conflict with Richard II, partly over the king's demands for loans; after seizing the city liberties, Richard dismissed (and briefly imprisoned) the mayor and sheriffs, appointed Sir Edward Dalyngrigge as warden and instituted a judicial commission to investigate alleged civic misgovernment; Dalyngrigge may have done business with Maghfeld prior to this, and certainly during his brief tenure as warden he called on Maghfeld for several loans, totalling £24 13s.4d. Ironically, the restoration of aldermannic status initially exposed Gilbert to a huge fine imposed on the city authorities by the judicial commission; but the fine was pardoned a few months later, once Richard was satisfied he had sufficiently asserted his authority over the city elite. On the same day the warden was commissioned, in July 1392, king and council appointed Maghfeld as one of the replacement sheriffs, just a few months before the shrieval term was to end; Maghfeld was continued in that office – said to be the choice of the warden (successor to Dalyngrigge), whereas Maghfeld's colleague was elected by the community – for the next term lasting into 1393.

Richard's choice of Maghfeld owed something to the fact Gilbert had no long-standing association with the aldermannic elite with which the king found himself in an dversarial relationship; his colleague as sheriff was the similarly unaffiliated Thomas Newenton, a grocer who had never before served as alderman. Perhaps these men were expected to be more compliant with the judicial investigation. But it may also have owed something to the favourable attention Maghfeld had already acquired, as a supplier of goods and loans to members of the court, and of services done for the king since 1383: first and briefly as guardian of the seas along the south-east and eastern coastlines; on various royal commissions 1384-85; and thereafter (for most of the rest of his life) as a collector of the king's customs, first at Southampton, then Boston, and finally London. Gilbert was present in 1393 when he was succeeded as sheriff by mayoral-choice Richard Whittington, who was also in King Richard's favour.

Suggestive of service to his king at even earlier date is Gilbert's acquisition (1379) of guardianship of an underage heir to Kent estates. The profits from administering those estates he could temporarily apply to his own business, until he had to account for at least some of them when the heir came of age (1393); and Maghfeld's business ledger refers to items such as grain, livestock, hemp seed, and eggs sourced from those estates in 1392 for the use of his household. In the city he performed the same role from 1375 for the teenage son of John Pounfreyt, a fellow resident of his parish and probably a family friend since Gilbert also acted as the sole non-family executor of the will of Robert Pounfreyt; this guardianship gave him access to a £40 inheritance, until 1378, when the young man was of age to claim the money.

Maghfeld's significance to the historian is, however, far less his role in the political history of London than his contribution to documenting the city's economy and mercantile connections of the late fourteenth century. His business ledger covering the period July 1390 to June 1395, with less detailed entries continuing to 1397, represents a rare survival of a record of the transactions of an English merchant. England has no equivalent to Maghfeld's contemporary, Francesco di Marco Datini, a merchant of Prato and Florence whose multi-national family of companies generated documentation which has survived, almost by a fluke, in vast quantity, including a series of financial ledgers. And while the Cely letters throw light on mercantile activities of that English family, they are not systematic business records. It was the arrears Maghfeld owed from customs collection that helped bring about his ruin, while also resulting in the seizure of his possessions, including his ledger, and the fortuitous survival of the latter to our time. His earlier ledgers have not been discovered and probably have not survived.

Despite the value of this document to the history of commerce in the fourteenth century, Maghfeld has mainly proven of interest to historians of medieval literature – apart from, notably, Margery James – because he was a contemporary and an acquaintance (at the least) of poets Chaucer and Gower, and in his roles of merchant, money-lender, civic official, or customs collector, also interconnected in some small way with lesser literary figures, such as Thomas Usk, or third parties connected to these various writers. He is thus seen as a witness to their times and his ledger, to an extent, a yardstick against which literary interpretation of mercantile practices and culture may be assessed for historical credibility.

It has in fact been much debated whether Chaucer may have had Maghfeld in mind as his model when he was shaping the satirical portrait of the merchant of Canterbury Tales. Chaucer declined to name his merchant, which itself has been used to argue that he was discretely avoiding offending a man from whom he might need a further loan in the future; his characterization of the merchant is considered unusually sympathetic, the merchant's main failing being that he is a bore, constantly speaking of his business successes. Maghfeld lived in the same part of the city as Chaucer and, besides their direct business together, the two men may well have had dealings in regard to the customs service, for Chaucer was a customs controller at London during the period when Maghfeld was farming tunnage and poundage; also, during part of Maghfeld's stint as collector, Chaucer was a clerk in the royal bureaucracy whose work had him interacting with customs officials. The two may well also have crossed paths occasionally in the city or at court. Be this as it may (and Chaucer's language can be used to support conflicting interpretations), in the fictional merchant Chaucer's readers would have recognized, if not Maghfeld himself, then a fairly typical London merchant/money-lender, who was prepared to stretch the boundaries of what was legal or moral to make a profit, but who tried himself to avoid becoming mired in debt.

A complete transcript of Maghfeld's account book has, regrettably, never been published. The above are just extracts selected by Rickert, partly on the basis of showing the high-ranking connections of Maghfeld, and partly for the Chaucerian associations they reveal; they cannot necessarily be considered a representative cross-section of Maghfeld's business dealings. They do not represent a continuous sequence of entries in the ledger nor are they placed in the order in which they appear therein. But they give some sense of the kind of business activities in which Maghfeld was involved. The ledger also provides a look at the household of a London merchant, evidencing not only his domestic staff (butler, male cook, and two maids), but also his business employees: a clerk and two or three 'valets' immediately on hand, the latter making most of the entries in the business ledger; bailiffs and others to look after his Woolwich and Kent properties; and mercantile agents who carried out his overseas transactions: one at Bayonne, one in Flanders, and a London citizen (Thomas Craft) who was perhaps his roaming agent and principal factor. The Bayonne agent had standing orders, and funds to back them up, to look out for good value wines of the region. These agents undoubtedly kept their own ledgers, for little of Maghfeld's foreign transactions are recorded in his own.

Despite the heterogeneity of his merchandize, the majority of his sales seem to have been iron and its products, even at the later end of his career. Analysis of these sales between 1390 and 1392 has shown that:

"Well over half his yearly stock was sold to other wholesalers of the great organized trades of London, while merchants and traders of the home counties and even further afield, in Suffolk and Hampshire, bought about one-third of his supplies, for iron was a commodity in such great demand that it was always worthwhile to buy it for re-sale. Maghfeld sold very little direct to the men engaged in the industrial work of the craft, and it was only one-sixth of his stock which remained for sale in small quantities to a few blacksmiths and to meet the modest household needs of a few consumers."
[James, op.cit., p.367]

By contrast, his stock of woad and alum – when he had some on-hand (his supplies fluctuating) was mostly sold to craftsmen involved in the cloth-making industry (dyers and drapers), and some to London grocers for re-sale. Transactions were not necessarily for cash. He obtained two pipes of wine from a linendraper in exchange for some linen, which the draper would export, and made similar exchanges of goods for goods when he knew he could find customers for what he was obtaining. Even more common were credit transactions; James op.cit., p. 369] determined that although the ledger entries made it look as though payment was deferred only for a few months, these terms were sometimes modified by written agreements, or Maghfeld had to live with late-paying customers; his ledger opens with a list of debts carried over from previous volume(s) of the series, some of them unpaid for many years; the challenge of recovering these, which would have entailed suing creditors or their pledges, or of negotiating indirect payment solutions, doubtless contributed to his financial problems as more and more of his capital became locked up in debts – capital that he needed to pay for credit he had obtained on his own purchases. At his death he held obligations of debt amounting to well over £800; in actual fact, some of these had been paid, and cancelled in the ledger, but he had hung on to the obligations and failed to issue his customers with proofs of payment. This, together with the unprofessional look of the ledger, suggest he may have lacked some of the qualities of a good businessman, or perhaps just show him over-stretched and/or under stress in the latter part of his career.

Even though Maghfeld's ledger is far from a complete record of his business activities in that period, it is sufficient to suggest his trade was in an unsteady decline from 1392, most marked in, but not exclusive to, his core business of ironmongery. Merchants – especially those active in international trading – were accustomed to financial risks, and some of Maghfeld's are documented for the late 1370s and early 1380s, but he apparently recovered from those losses. James [pp.372-73] attributed his troubles of the '90s to the consequences of Richard II's quarrel with the Londoners: Maghfeld's acquisition of burdensome and time-consuming civic responsibilities; the demands on him for loans to his shrieval colleague and the royally-appointed warden, to the city Guildhall, and to the royal household, which diverted some of his mercantile capital; resentment within his customer base for his association with the unpopular Richard, affecting his credit standing; and, in 1394, the royal requirement for the leading citizens (of whom Maghfeld was now clearly one) to provide financial support for the king's Irish expedition, there being no evidence that Maghfeld's contribution was ever reimbursed. His finances had become over-reliant on the money-lending that must have recommended itself as the kind of business activity that would enable him to remain in the city after he had acquired official civic responsibilities there. In particular he had over-extended himself in loans to men in the entourage or service of the king – men from whom repayment could be difficult to obtain; this, together with collapsing credit in London, would have reduced his resources to acquire goods abroad. It has also been noted that a shortage of coinage in England played a role in Maghfeld's problems too.

By mid-1395 his expenses were exceeding his receipts, and he was having difficulty covering the credit that others had extended to him. To compensate, he had probably been dipping into the cash received through his customs collection duties – a temporary windfall similar to the inheritance of wards he had administered – and his account of receipts from the 1395/96 fiscal year showed him owing arrears of some £496. Astonishingly, it was precisely at this time, in September 1395, that Maghfeld purchased a ship, the Ste. Mary's Knight from from a Lucca man (though a citizen of Venice); whether an attempt – courageous, desperate, or foolhardy – to revive his involvement in international commerce, or a plan to re-sell at a profit, we cannot know. The seller may have been a little nervous about the transaction, for he requested the sale agreement to be sealed with the mayor's seal, had it notarized by an imperial notary, and witnessed by merchants of Lucca, Venice, Florence and Genoa. Whatever Gilbert's intent, the acquisition of a ship did not reverse his declining fortunes. A reflection of that decline was that by February 1397 he had lost his aldermannic post. He died in May 1397, essentially a ruined man, even if that fact was not immediately apparent to others. It fell to the king's officials to try to recoup the missing customs revenue from Maghfeld's own debtors.

The king as customer

The second text presented above comprises, like the Maghfeld ledger entries, a set of selections, chosen according to a theme rather than any representativeness. These are extracted from the Treasurer's roll of expenditures in 1370, with a view to giving a rough, tip-of-the-iceberg idea of some of the kinds of goods and services the king and his officials sought and obtained from urban merchants, artisans, or communities. Under the Plantagenets, the main organs of national government (Parliament excepted) became almost permanently fixed in the London/Westminster nexus, and the focus of wholesale commerce shifted, for London merchants, away from the great fairs to their home-based ports, markets, and shops, so that the city acquired the attractive capacity of a fair, year-round – or at least during that part of the year when marine conditions were not too hazardous for transport of cargoes by ship. London's own population, augmented by the visitors it drew from the provinces, created a consumer base large enough to support continuous commerce.

Through these trends the city took on more the character of a capital, administratively and economically, and Londoners were looked to more heavily, by the royal court and by the magnates who hovered around it, as sources of goods, services, and cash. Thus Londoners capitalized on, as well as contributed to, the decline of the fairs, preferring to buy and sell on home turf where they had, and fought to maintain, privileges advantageous to themselves; and indeed to force buyers to come to the city, as a number of London gilds tried to prevent their members from selling elsewhere. By the close of the thirteenth century, pretty well every luxury good imported into England was available in London, and a growing percentage of the purchases made for the king and members of his court took place in that city.

The examples obtained from the treasurer's roll are far from comprehensive, for what must have been many expenditures on household provisions, clothing, and furnishings, as well as entertainment, would have been covered by accounts of other officials notably the keepers of the Wardrobe, which serviced the royal court, the officers of the king's Household, and their subordinates. The king's treasurer and his chamberlains presided (usually by deputy) over the lower floor of the building housing the Exchequer, known as the Exchequer of Receipt (and colloquially as Hell) because its principal concern was receive the various revenues due the Crown and to pay out those funds, either by allocation of lump sums to other centres of expenditure, such as the Wardrobe, or by individual payments as recorded in the Treasurer's accounts. Those payments comprised, for the most part, wages, rewards, annuities, or pensions, to bureaucrats, revenue collectors, household servants, messengers, soldiers and sailors, and the like. In addition there are repayments of loans made to the king by towns, religious houses, private individuals, and other sources. The other largish category comprises costs related to special projects such as military operations (in the case of 1370, an offensive expedition sent to France) and the maintenance of garrisons and coastal defences.

Although much of the archives of the king's Household have been lost, the need for certain officials to account to the Exchequer brought Wardrobe and other documents into that archive; this surviving Exchequer documentation is quite extensive, which is part of the reason why, apart from the earlier Pipe Rolls, so little of it has been made more widely accessible through publication. The richness of this documentation in the thirteenth century, as opposed to the sparseness of other records (national or local), evidencing commercial transactions, is part of the reason why the Crown seems to be such an important customer and stimulus to the enrichment of at least some London merchants and craftsmen. The relationship between the king and the Londoners, although not infrequently antagonistic, was reciprocally beneficial, so that it could be said that "London, with its trade and wealth, was the backbone of the royal finances." [T.F. Tout. Chapters in the Administrative History of Medieval England: The Wardrobe, The Chambers and the Small Seals (1920–33), Manchester University Press, 1920, vol. 4, p.319]. Merchants were used to living with risk and, for the prospect of developing a good client relationship with the king, seem to have been able to tolerate the fact that kings were often dilatory or undependable debtors.

Edward III was a big spender on luxuries, even compared to previous monarchs. But the king was not the only rich and luxury-loving customer from whom London tradesmen could hope for patronage. The queen also had her own wardrobe, and sometimes the Prince of Wales or other princes. Other noble and ecclesiastical households must also have been lucrative clients. The greater magnates acquired townhouses in London and used them as wardrobes, or even rented additional buildings for that purpose. Londoners did not like it when wars drew the king into the field for sometimes extended periods, taking with him components of the Wardrobe and Household, or when parliaments – large gatherings of wealthy consumers – were summoned to other locations in England, for this drew trade away from London into the provinces.

But it was particularly to the patronage of the king, who purchased large quantities of victuals and the kinds of luxury goods that provided high profits, that a number of the leading Londoners – economically and politically – owed their prosperity, and to whom a few owed their ruin. The king did not exclusively patronize London businesses – we see him buying from merchants of other English towns (such as herring from Yarmouth men) and from foreign merchants (notably wine and cloth); but the Londoners were more convenient, perhaps hungrier, and long-term business relationships could be established with them. Above all it is the vintners and other London merchants dealing in wine who appear most commonly in royal records of purchases, such as (to give just one example) John Crouche, who in 1399 sold 9 casks and 1 pipe of sweet Spanish wine, 2 butts of Rumney, and 1 butt of Malmsey to the king's household, for £94 10s.

Other than what would today be classed as 'office supplies', there are few commercial purchases in the pair of Issue Rolls covering Easter and Michaelmas terms, 1370, and none are for wine; those that are found therein are mostly incidental to larger initiatives. Nonetheless, we have some impression from these items how Londoners in particular benefited from proximity to the usual base of royal government, as middlemen and producers of a range of commodities and as service providers – such as couriers, carriers, manufacturers, and money-lenders (when ready cash was needed in a time-frame not accommodated by the normal pace of inflowing revenues, as was too often the case). The character of the Issue Rolls evolved somewhat over time as administrative machinery elaborated, or attempts were made to improve efficiency or accountability. So commodities such as victuals and vestments were not always absent from the Issue Rolls. Richard Cassidy's use of the Liberate Roll for 1258/59 to help reconstruct a calendar of the damaged Issue Roll of Michaelmas term of that administrative year [], shows, for instance, that on one occasion 40 marks was spent on 8 tuns of wine obtained from John de Gisors, and on another £22 10s. for 9 tuns of wine from Stephen de Chelmersford, while an even larger volume (25 tuns) was acquired from another Londoner, Philip le Taylur, for 100 marks. In December £210 were turned over to the Wardrobe to cover costs for clothing for the king, queen, and their children – doubtless representing multiple expenditures at different times, which would have been itemized in Wardrobe accounts.

Certain tradesmen were being favoured with repeat custom, although not usually to the point of monopolies developing. But certain London businessmen known to have royalist sentiments were shown particular favour by Henry III and Prince Edward, in order to strengthen the monarchy's base of loyalist dependents within the city. One example is William de Gloucester, a London goldsmith who evidently was employed as the king's official goldsmith, and who also held office as master of the Exchange; others include John de Northampton, Philip le Taylur, and John de Gisors. Edward I showed greater inclination to put business the way of foreign merchants, it being his policy to encourage their involvement in England's commerce, particularly the Gascons, whom he favoured, and the Italians who provided banking services that made some of his military campaigns practicable.

Whether the business generated by the royal household spread much further afield is less clear. Certainly the king was sending buyers out to the great English fairs, when they were in their heyday and the cheapest places to purchase large quantities of a range of English and foreign goods such as wax, spices, and especially the high quality cloths produced in Flanders and luxury cloths imported from further afield, before middlemen got their hands on them, pushing prices up. Thus, for example, at the end of April and in early May of 1226 the Treasurer was ordered to allocate large sums of money to agents (who normally included the king's tailor) to take to the fair of St. Ives to buy cloth for the king and his brother. Local traders might also be commissioned to acquire goods for the king's use, and even sent far afield to do so. London merchant Adam Bury, for instance, was despatched to Paris for the Black Prince to seek out bargains in velvet and find cloths embroidered with swans or ladies' heads.

Sources of victuals may have been more diversified, but the examples of Wardrobe accounts so far published do not itemize purchases so as to identify their suppliers. Nor, when the coronation of Edward II was being organized, does it seem that the Wardrobe had a list of preferred tradesmen, for the mayor and sheriffs of London (whose citizens traditionally helped serve at the feast) were tasked with identifying suppliers for the food and drink to be consumed at the event, but paid for by the Crown. Not surprisingly nor unreasonably, they selected men known to them, on whom they could rely – men of at least moderate consequence, and sometimes more, in their trades. The sheriffs – mercer Nicholas Picot (alderman of Coleman Street ward from 1298 to his death in 1312, chamberlain 1300-04) and corder Nigel Drury (alderman of Billingsgate 1308-15) – opted to put some of the business their own way and supply £40 worth of ale, while other business was given to follow members of the ruling class: Adam de Foleham to supply some of the fish (£100), and Thomas Brun the poultry (£200); Walter de Hakeney, was allocated £20 worth of large fish to provide. On the other hand, Henry de Redenhale, who was assigned the specialized task of supplying £20 worth of small pike and 10 marks worth of Gloucester lampreys, was not yet even a citizen. Of the five chandlers designated by the city authorities to supply £100 worth of grain: Roger le Palmer was on his way to becoming one of the leading cornmongers of the city; Adam Wade was a member of one of the more substantial families of the city and on the rise; Thomas de Wrotham, John le Huthereve, and John de Romeneye are relatively little documented but all seem to have been based close to Thameside docks. Of the two men chosen to provide meat for the feast, in the form of cattle and boars to the value of £100, one, Ralph Ratespray, was an established mercator animalium, while Nicholas Doreman was one of the more prominent butchers. The five men charged with providing wood and coal, value £50 – John Fairhod, Thomas de Hales, Thomas Wastel, Roger le White, and John de Talworth – were likewise established woodmongers, a trade that had existed for at least half a century. Its members seem to have favoured as an area of residence Castle Baynard ward (not one of the wealthier wards), where there was a public dock on the Thames bank by the Westwatergate, another further east known as Wood Wharf – several woodmongers living close to the former dock – as well as private wharfs, at least one of which is known to have been owned at this period by a woodmonger (buscarius, Baldewyn le Buscher. Finally, £20 was at the disposal of John le Discher and associates to provide plates, dishes, and salt-cellars.

For that coronation, cloth was provided by London draper Richard Poterel junior, who was paid £200 for it. The same event may perhaps also explain the purchase, from London mercer Peter de Sparham, of gold tassels, a gold chaplet with frontal, an alb decorated with pearls and silk, and other items of the same sort, which the king wished the Duchess of Cornwall and other ladies-in-waiting of the court to have.

Not only coronations, but also royal marriages, funerals, and other occasions for ceremonial displays of monarchic authority, dignity, social superiority, and beneficence might give rise to lavish royal expenditure that included patronage to London merchants and artisans – particularly those who manufactured or supplied luxury goods.

Prominent among these were goldsmiths, as a few examples will illustrate. Roger Frowyk, who had been paid for repairs to a sceptre to ready it for Edward II's coronation, received an advance payment in November 1315 on the price for making a gold crown for the king. In 1242 Margaret, the widow of Adam de Shoreditch was paid £46 6s.11d. for a plain silver gilt cup, two gold clasps, and 126 rings that Adam had, before he died, supplied the keeper of the Wardrobe. In 1365 Thomas Hessey received a commission worth over £250 for a large number of cups and other silver gilt plate intended as gifts for important members of the entourage accompanying the Count of Flanders to England; these were not off-the-shelf items, but, perhaps specified in the terms of the contract, individually styled: one was shaped like a chalice and its top enamelled with a white eagle, another had an enamelled top decorated with rubies, one stood atop three lions, another three angels, and so on. In 1385 another goldsmith, John Bottesham, supplied Richard II with a woodsman's knife and a huntsman's horn decorated with gold and with green silk tassels, for £25 17s.4d. The Plantagenets all had a taste for beautiful and expensive things, and Richard perhaps more than any of them. He commissioned from London goldsmiths bejewelled collars for himself in 1393; and, in 1397 for his queen to give as Christmas gifts, a tablet set with sapphires and rubies for the Duke of Lancaster, and studs and rings with precious stones for other courtiers. His successor was not so different; in 1406 Christopher Tildesley was paid for having produced, doubtless at king's specifications, a collar of gold worked with the motto "soveignez" and the enamelled letters S and X, and hung with 10 amulets decorated with 9 large pearls, 12 large diamonds, 8 rubies, 8 sapphires, and with, dangling from it, a triangular clasp (brooch) with a great ruby set in it and decorated with 4 large pearls. When this was delivered to the king at Winchester and he learned what it cost he may have balked, for he needed to consult with men knowledgeable in such matters to be reassured that the price of £385 6s.8d. was reasonable. In 1415 Henry V owed the even more daunting sum of £976 0s.10½d. to William Randolf, for making him 12 gold dishes, 48 silver chargers, and 96 silver dishes, for his table; the same goldsmith received a commission worth £85 11s.4½d from Henry VI (1423) for a large silver spice plate with gilt cover, three salt-cellars and three candelabras all of silver gilt. Such commissions might not come to a goldsmith often, but when they did they put bread, and more, on table.

Plate and jewellery of precious metals, sometimes jewel-encrusted or enamelled, were not simply display objects for their owners; they were an investment in objects which, in times of need, could be melted down or turned over as pledges for loans of cash. In March 1408 Henry V recovered two gold flasks and an unspecified number of gold cloths upon repaying £565 10s. 7d. to John Hende, while in 1424 Henry V received back half a gold collar which he had surrendered as security for loans from Londoners Henry Barton (£1200), William Tristour (£1200), Thomas Chalton (£100), and Thomas Stanes (£81 6s.8d.), to help cover costs of his expedition to France. The legendary Richard Whittington, although it was with Richard II he had first found favour, through his services as financier, he also made loans to the Lancastrian regime; we hear for example in 1411 of a loan of 100 marks, in 1413 of one of £1000, and of one of 2000 marks in 1417 (of which an instalment of 500 was repaid over two years later. In addition there were sales of luxury goods, such as of pearls and cloth of gold (e.g. worth £215 13s.4d in 1403, £385 6s.8d in 1406). The Crown could rarely make its expenditures conform to its income and there was a constant reliance on short-term loans or provision of goods on credit, although repayment could sometimes take rather longer than agreed.

The goldsmiths were also called upon to make royal seals, a need that arose not infrequently; not only were new seals required when a king came to the throne, but also when he restyled his title, as for example when Edward III renounced his claim to be king of France in 1360, then resumed it in 1369. Each new queen needed her own great and privy seals too, and the Prince of Wales might have similar needs, along with the keeper of the realm when the king was abroad. Various local officials in royal service also had to be provided with seals. The Engraving of seal matrixes and casting of seals from them was often contracted out to London goldsmiths such as John de Chichester who, having already in 1360 been called on to supply jewellery on the occasion of the marriage of one of Edward III's sons, was commissioned in 1361 to make a pair of privy seals in silver, and in the following year was engaged to produce a silver chain for the privy seal. For Edward I's second queen William Kele had in 1299 made a great seal in silver and a privy seal in gold, and another privy seal for her in 1306, while Simon de Kele cast an unspecified seal for Edward II in the opening months of his reign. In 1377 Nicholas de Twyford was the goldsmith selected to engrave and cast a seal for use in regard to certain Welsh lordships which had temporarily come into the king's hand, and the following year he two drinking-cups and two ewers, silver gilt, for the king to give as a wedding present to one of his courtiers. In 1423 John Bernes was given a pound to cover his expenses in riding from London to Windsor castle to alter the engraving on the great seal and the privy signet, and to engrave a new inscription on the privy seal. In 1390, however, a brass seal (engraved by goldsmith Adam de Thorp) was considered adequate for the chancellor of the king's lordship of Pembroke, and in 1403 a lapidary was sufficient to make and engrave a base metal seal for a customs collector at Plymouth. None of these were especially high-paying jobs – the amount of skilled labour being worth almost as much as the precious metals that were used – but they show another dimension of the goldsmith's trade.

The royal taste for finery or possessions that showed off wealth and status was not limited to the products of goldsmiths. William Courtenay, a London embroiderer, was in July 1365 paid £250 of £350 due for what must have been a magnificent vest, perhaps intended by Edward III as a gift for the Count of Flanders, whom he hoped to entice into an alliance through a royal marriage, though in this he was disappointed. In 1367 Courtenay earned the more modest amount of £20 for orfrays and other decorative items to add to a velvet vest for the king, embroidered with pelicans, gold tabernacles, and other imagery, as well as for Courtenay's workmanship in repairs to the vest. By contrast a non-entity of a messenger had to make do with a gift of worsted, striped black and white, purchased from London merchant John Organ for £1 13s.4d. (1385), although an ambassador could expect at least the high-status scarlet cloth acquired from John Staunton in 1434 for £16.

Some of the finery was produced for the king to give as offerings when he attended religious services, or as gifts to churchmen. To highlight one supplier, Adam de Basinges was ordered paid a total of £43 19s.1d. for a number of such items around October 1240: six baudekins of gold and an embroidered chasuble to be offered at St. Paul's Cathedral, a chasuble of violet silk with a gold fringe to be offered at Westminster Abbey, a mitre as gift to the Archbishop of Armagh, and a plainer chasuble with vest for the Henry III's own chaplain at Kennington. The following January payment to him of amounts totalling £117 16s.8d. was ordered for a gold cope to be offered in the king's private chapel at Westminster at Christmas, for three chasubles of red silk, two diapered cloths and a cloth of gold to be made into a tunic and dalmatic, two embroidered copes, two embroidered chasubles, and an alb embroidered with a gold fringe, all for offerings in the same chapel at other times, as well as a cope of red silk as gift for the Bishop of Hereford. In 1317 100 marks was paid for what must have been a particularly fine embroidered cope, purchased from Rose de Bureford, and intended as a gift to be presented by the queen to the pope. A payment order of April 1242 (for amounts totalling £21 7s.7d) listed further items purchased from him for similar purposes: 3 yards of undressed cloth and 11 yards of white linen for an altar cloth, a silk cloth with fringe, orfrays for decorating a cope, two cloths of gold, a cushion of silk cloth, two silk cloths manufactured in Genoa and one in Milan, and three baudekins. Besides liturgical vestments, common oblations included frankincense and jewellery.

Such oblations reflect not only the conventional piety that kings either felt, or felt the need to display, but also concern for divine favour during life and the health of their souls after death. Another concern for health is seen in the expenditures, often through the king's physician, at the establishments of London apothecaries. One, John de Sellyng, was paid 20 marks in March 1308 for drugs he had supplied to Edward II when he was Prince of Wales. In 1357 John Adam was paid a rather small amount for spermaceti, white powder, madyan, caffetin sugar, and an electuary, all for the Scottish king David Bruce (then a prisoner in the Tower). John Salman and John Waddesworth were the apothecaries chosen in 1395 to supply various spices, electuaries and their containers (electrines), as well as other bottles and vials.

When a royal did finally succumb to health problems or age, however, it was London's chandlers who had an opportunity to win business. For the corpse to be transported to Canterbury Cathedral or Westminster Abbey, then lie in state during the funeral service and the vigil preceding it, as well as for similar commemorations (body absent) on the month's-mind anniversary of the death, a hearse had to be constructed: typically a wooden and/or metal framework with a coffin sometimes built in. Although this job might be given to carpenters and other workmen, as was the case with the hearse for Philippa of Hainault's funeral in January 1370, the work seems often to have been contracted out to chandlers, presumably because one function of the hearse was to hold multiple candles that were kept alight during ceremonies, and it was the wax-chandlers who supplied those lights, as well as those for placement throughout the church where the ceremonies took place. In 1394 13s.4d. was paid for the carriage of 1,500 lbs. of wax from Suffolk to London, to be delivered to Roger Chaundeler to make lights for the hearse of Anne of Bohemia; possibly the same man as the Roger Elys chandler who had provided four hearses for Anne's funeral and one-month and two-month memorials, but for whom full payment had to wait until after his own death, his executors receiving the outstanding balance in November 1397. Simon Prentot was the wax-chandler who supplied the hearse for the month's-mind of Henry IV, along with 120 candles for installation on the hearse and others for elsewhere in Canterbury Cathedral, for which he received £200 in two instalments. His services were required again in April 1421 at the death of Thomas, Duke of Clarence, the king's brother, although on a reduced scale, for his fee this time was £85. But when Henry V, shortly into his reign, had the remains of the murdered Richard II brought for reburial in Westminster Abbey, all that was spent was 163;4 for a London joiner, John Wyddemer, to go with his assistants to King's Langley friary to collect the remains, put together a bier and coffin, and have it drawn back to the abbey; and half of that was not paid until over a year after the job was completed. When the anniversary of the reburied Richard was celebrated, banners that had been made for Henry IV's anniversary were re-used.

For the production of decorative banners was another source of business associated with state funerals, as well as other occasions. For Henry IV's anniversary two London painters, Thomas Kent and Thomas Wryght were to receive £36 15s.4d. for providing the material for 90 banners and ornamenting them with the arms of all the kings of Christendom and other nobles of different kingdoms, 50 jettons (roundels) with arms, and valances similarly painted, to be placed around the hearse. Painters were one kind of artist occasionally employed by the Wardrobe, but mostly for emblazoning funerary or military banners, walls, or royal vehicles, with coats-of-arms or other heraldic devices. Thus in 1435 a London painter, Thomas Daunte, was paid for painting the Duke of Bedford's arms on 300 shields, at 8d. per shield, and six banners for the Duke's funeral.

Less frequently we find sculptors called on, as in 1376 when, as part of work still going on to create a tomb for the late queen Philippa, the London stonemason John Orchard was engaged first to carve three angels to decorate the tomb, and slightly later to produce from alabaster figures of an infant boy and girl, deceased children of the queen, for their own small tomb. Something even more out of the ordinary was the table Edward III was having made in London, in 1366, for transport to Windsor, to be placed in his chapel in the castle. This was probably in relation to his foundation in 1348 of the Order of the Garter and of a college of St. George at Windsor, attached to the king's chapel of St. Edward the Confessor (which was at that date rededicated to a number of saints, including St. George). The porch he added to the chapel in the 1350s became the focal point for the chivalrous order. The table was built, and a number of unspecified figures carved into it by William (or John) de Lyndeseye, wood-carver, of London; it was then painted by another artisan.

It is in decorating banners that we first encounter the London painter Gilbert Prince, commissioned in 1364 in connection with the funeral of the late Queen of Scotland; he was paid £24 for his work plus some unspecified items purchased from him. In 1377, with Edward III's executors trying to wrap up his finances, Gilbert received £44 payment of a debt for having painted the king's arms on four small banners for the minstrels' trumpets and for decorating a pair of curtains for the king's great bed. Richard II, a man of highly cultured tastes and in some regards a Renaissance prince in a state not yet ready for such a thing, was able to find in some of the London craftsmen (such as goldsmiths Nicholas Twyford and Drugo Barantyn) creative abilities that met his taste for high-quality work – art impressive enough to show off his regal power. He took such a liking to Gilbert's work that he seems to have made him England's first official court painter. In 1383 he granted him exemption from jury duty and other civic service obligations, likely to ensure Gilbert was not distracted from his artistic endeavours. In 1392 he was paid the extraordinary sum of £650 13s. 7½d. for various works of art that had been created over an unspecified period of time for the king. His will of 1396 shows him fairly wealthy and employing a clerk, Thomas Litlyngton. When Richard II undertook an expedition to Ireland in 1399 among his entourage was his painter, one Thomas Litlyngton alias Thomas Prince; it seems not improbable that Thomas was not simply Gilbert's clerk but an apprentice who had obtained his London citizenship and adopted his master's surname, as if the medieval counterpart of a modern 'brand'. Richard II was the first monarch known to have had a portrait painted of himself from life, ca. 1394. This life-size panel painting still hangs in Westminster Abbey and may have been intended by Richard to accompany his tomb there. While the artist is unknown, it is generally suspected to have been the work of Gilbert Prince, despite the high quality of the work being atypical of most English artists of the period.

Richard had ambitious plans for a tomb monument for himself and his first wife, Anne. In 1395 he had engaged the highly reputed architect/sculptor, master stone-mason Henry Yevele, along with fellow London mason Stephen Lote, to create the marble tomb itself, for £200, of which instalments were paid in 1395, 1396, and 1399. The contract may have included carved moulds of the recumbent figures of Richard and Anne, holding hands, for Richard contracted with two coppersmiths to cast them in bronze from some unspecified 'pattern', but with the addition of decorations in the form of symbols representing the pair; his original intent was that the effigies be painted, although the treatment they finally received was gilding. This work of several London craftsmen still survives in fairly good condition in Westminster Abbey. A similar tomb effigy, of Henry V's mother, was created in 1413 by a different London coppersmith.

It is only very occasionally that we see a larger group of suppliers, further down the social scale, benefitinging directly and significantly from royal expenditure. In 1259, as part of Henry III's ongoing remodelling of his palace at Westminster and in response to damage from a fire that started in the kitchen, improvements were made to fire safety and to sanitation through the reconstruction of a chimney more solidly, adding a sewer from the kitchen, and rebuilding the laundry and a latrine near the Thameside wharf. Besides the numerous workmen, skilled and unskilled, who found employment, and the suppliers of stone (whose names, but not their places of origin, are given), many thousands of nails – for wall pannelling, roof shingles, and other purposes, – were purchased through one Henry of London Bridge, and larger amounts were spent on obtaining regular consignments of lime (for the masonry) from Londoners Agnes Calfonar and Richard Calfonar. Richard Box, member of an aldermannic family and agent for Henry Nasard, draper, a 'king's merchant' who did a lot of business with the Wardrobe, was despatched to Boston fair to acquire four cartloads of lead for repairs to gutters and roofing; and the widow of Richard of Eastcheap made a small amount from sale of hurdles and poles to construct scaffolding.

Although many of the goods and services purchased from Londoners were related to luxury items, there were more prosaic expenditures, such as: the roughly £11 11s. which in 1257 was ordered to be paid to Ralph le Spicer and his wife Amphelisa for supplying an evidently large quantity of ale, while in the following year Bartholomew le Spicer received £8 7s.7d. for nutmegs, figs, raisins, and cinnamon; the 3s.4d paid William the bookbinder, for rebinding the Little Domesday in 1320; 23d. to James Chaundeller of St. Mildred's parish for a chest to be used in the treasury (1364), and 13s. 4d to joiner John Wyddemer in 1415 for what was probably a larger chest to archive documents related to truces between the king of England and other rulers; 8 marks paid to William le Clerk in 1308 for nine brass pots for use by the scullions of the king's kitchen; and (1316) the 6s.8d reward for an unusually large sturgeon that fishmonger Simon de Miravelle's employees had caught in the Thames near Woolwich, and that he salted, put in a barrel, and took along to the king's kitchen, perhaps intending it as a gift that might lead to future custom.

Office supplies also fall into this category of necessaries, although it was not all in-stock materials, for some was custom-designed to facilitate bureaucratic procedure. Tout [op.cit., vol.1, p.47] relates that from about 1286 Wardrobe accounts submitted to the Exchequer were altered from the parchment rolls that typify medieval archives to bound books of parchment designed specifically for that purpose, with projecting slips of parchment attached to identify where each main section began. In 1312/13 William de Southflete, a Londoner stationer, made four such expense account books, at 2s.6d. each; two years earlier he had supplied a similar number, along with a quantity of loose parchment membranes. In 1428 the haberdasher, Walter Lucy, was the source of 12 parchment books intended for distribution to customs collectors in various ports, with the instruction that they should record imports and exports therein, and not in any other record, and should submit those books (and not any other document) when rendering account at the Exchequer.

Military needs were, unsurprisingly, a more regular item of outlay, and a few examples will show some of the range of expenditures and London suppliers. Draper Simon de Swanlond was in 1317 paid an installment of the 163;115 3s.4d. due him for cloth he supplied to make uniforms for the knights and valets accompanying Edward II to Scotland. In 1326 a more beleaguered Edward commissioned a city armourer, Nicholas le Clerk, to produce one hundred coats of mail, helmets with neck-guards, and pairs of gauntlets, so that the king could increase his garrison at the Tower. In 1378 John Lincoln was commissioned to supply the town and castle of Cherbourg with 300 qt. of wheat, 200 qt. of beans, 60 casks of wine, one cask of oil, 100 chaldron of sea coals, 10,000 lb. of iron, one barrel of brass, two horse-mills, 1,000 planks for wainscotting, 20,000 nails, 2 carts, 6 horses with harness, 2 pipes of powder, 40 war slings, 10,000 crossbow quarrels, 200 bows, 700 quivers of arrows, and 200 spears; the contract was worth 1,000 marks, although the amount had to be borrowed from leading aldermen William Walworth and John Philpot to pay Lincoln. With the military technology shifting, in 1400 four relatively obscure Londoners – one a grocer, another an armourer, and a third described as a sergeant who lived near the city Guildhall – supplied, in separate transactions, quarrel guns, saltpetre, sulphur, wadding, and emery.

Military materiel and provisions was an area in which merchants other than Londoners were more likely to obtain royal orders. In 1340, for instance, Robert Baious and other merchants of Barton-upon-Humber sold 674 quarters of wheat and malt and 309 quarters of peas to the keeper of Edinburgh and Sterling castles, then in English hands. And in 1404 Thomas Saundres and John Stevenes of Bristol sold 66 pipes of honey, 12 casks of wine, 4 casks of sour wine, 50 casks of wheat flour, 80 qt. of salt, for Prince Henry to victual Welsh castles.

The royal court's patronage of businesses close at hand in London was natural and still evident in later reigns. The Wardrobe account for 1480 shows among the Londoners who were beneficiaries of royal spending (most of them on repeat occasions): suppliers of cloth and haberdashery such as mercer and alderman Richard Rawson, mercer John Pykering, Alice Claver silkwoman, hosier Richard Andrewe; cordwainer Peter Herton who supplied shoes, slippers, pattens, and boots for the king himself and for servants of his household; Peter Draper, who despite his name was an ironmonger; and Piers Baudwyn stationer, who bound in cloth eleven books for the king's library, including copies of the Bible, the histories of Livy, Josephus and Froissart, and a work titled Le Gouvernement of Kinges and Princes, and who also gilded some old book clasps.

The Crown was only one – though the most conspicuous – of a number of high-ranking and high-spending customers whose custom most London businessmen would surely like to have cultivated, and which attracted ambitious and capable merchants to immigrate to London. True, only a small percentage of the city traders and craftsmen would make their fortunes primarily through doing business with the king or his officials, but more could include that among a cluster of prosperous clients, and could leverage royal patronage into business elsewhere, beginning with those nobles who liked to follow the king's suit. At least as important to the city's economy must have been the trickle-down effect of royal expenditure, as prospering city merchants attracted more business, expanded their activities and the employment of others, and spent some of their profits on the products of artisans or stock ofshopkeepers further down the socio-economic scale.

The religious house as consumer and producer

A religious community of secular canons was established at Durham in the late tenth century, in association with the foundation of a church as a new resting-place for the bones of St. Cuthbert. They were in 1083 replaced by Benedictine monks, and the land held by the church was divided between the monastery and the bishopric; in the two decades or so that followed the monastery grew and a cathedral was built in place of the original church. In the fifteenth century the number of monks fluctuated between about two dozen and four dozen, but there were also half a dozen novices, a few poor children and old women who were charity cases, and the numerous lay servants associated with the community.

It was strictly speaking a priory, in that a prior was the chief administrator, for the place of an abbot was held by the bishop, and he was the titular head of the monastery, as well as having palatine powers in the county. A bursar, whose title indicates that he held the purse-strings, is first heard of in 1293, although the earliest account roll to survive from the abbey (1278) looks much like a bursar's account; he was the principal financial official, to whom the others were accountable. As accounting became more decentralized, we hear of a cellarer, who provisioned the monastery with necessaries (but not luxuries) and a chamberlain in the first half of the fourteenth century. The cellarer had oversight of the food storage and production facilities mentioned above, as well as salt-house, paste-house, seething-house, apple-house, etc., and he employed women for water-carrying, as well as the occasional rat-catcher, mole-catcher, or ferreter. The chamberlain's principal duty was to provide for the bed-linen and clothing of the main community of monks and novices, as well as those of the latter who were proved bright enough to send to study at Oxford. The tailor worked under him, and he purchased from the cellarer the pick of the hides for making boots. Not surprisingly, the foul work of tanning seems to have been carried on outside the monastery.

Monastic houses were not as lavish in their expenditures as the Crown, for showy display was less part of their cultural imperative; yet they were far from ascetics and aspired to a comfortable standard of living, with expenditures on middling-grade cloth, on the relatively inexpensive fur of squirrels to line outerwear for warmth, on adequate furnishings to permit a civilized existence, and on ample victuals whose taste was improved with imported spices. The prior and his household, who had their own stock of supplies administered through the prior's wardrobe, would live a little more luxuriously, and the major officials of the monastic household would also receive clothing that was fur-lined. Such houses could be large-scale operations, requiring a wide range of expenditures, different accounting centres, and staff specializing in managing different resources and assets. Some of those resources were the result of a certain amount of self-sufficiency – most of the grain and provender, for instance, came from tithes due the abbey from tenants of its widespread lands. And at least some of the community's needs for vegetables were met by gardens that were part of the abbey complex. The abbey's own servants included: a butcher, who looked after the slaughterhouse; a keeper of the meat larder, housing various knives for cutting carcasses into cookable portions, and equipment for roasting meat, which was another of the keeper's duties; a fishman, who looked after the fishhouse where fish was stored in bulk; a keeper of the fish-larder, where certain fish was stored (in barrels), and all fish was prepared for cooking. There were also workshops for candle-maker, tailor, plumber, and glazier, besides the more usual bakery and brewery.

The monks were not only consumers and purchasers of goods, but also producers and sellers. Durham's abbey had a stud farm, operated by the prior, where horses were bred and trained; those surplus to abbey needs were sold at fairs at Durham, Darlington, and Ripon. Wool produced from the abbey's flocks was likewise sold, through middlemen or at the Boston fair, as were other surplus raw products, such as tallow and hides from livestock slaughtered for food or dead of some sickness, and oak bark (used by tanners); for example, the chamberlain's account of 1450/51 records among its receipts 18s. from the sale of 15 hides to John Henrison, a barker. Furthermore, the abbey had on some of its lands coal-mines, whose operation, certainly in place by the latter half of the fourteenth century, generated revenues from coal sales (likely through Newcastle or its middlemen) roughly in the order of £20 to £50 a year, which were assigned to a dedicated financial officer, for expenditure mainly on the physical fabric of the monastery, but also on costs incurred in mine operation and in prospecting for new sources of coal – investment which at times was not inconsiderable. There was a growing demand for coal, for both domestic and industrial uses. In addition, lead used by the plumber was sourced from abbey's own mine.

Although Hartlepool's harbour would be developed so that it could serve as the official port of the Palatine County of Durham, the monks of Durham were more inclined to import wine or other goods through the larger ports of Newcastle-upon-Tyne or Kingston-upon-Hull, which attracted more mercantile cargoes, or through fairs – that at Boston being the closest major fair, while the lesser but closer fair at Darlington was regularly frequented. Thus, for example, in the bursar's account for 1278 we hear of 4 tuns of wine being purchased at Newcastle at Easter, 24 tuns later in the year, and payment for carting 17 tuns from Newcastle to Durham; usually the source of bulk purchases of wine is unspecified. Similarly, while some names – such as that of Newcastle merchant Roger Thornton – appear a number of times in the accounts, more often than not the names of individual sellers are absent, sometimes simply because not known, as in the case of "a certain woman of Newcastle" from whom fish were purchased in 1334; in 1330 we hear of business done with Thomas del Holme, identified as a merchant of Beverley, but this is because it is in the form of a substantial 'loan' of £174 10s. This might represent credit given on merchandize bought, or advance purchase of some of the abbey's wool clip later that year, or the next; for it was a common practice for religious houses to contract out to merchants or middlemen its sale of future wool clips, in order to obtain cash advances – a practice which could get the houses into financial trouble down the road. For the abbey, like the king, did not always have cash on hand and so was no prompt in paying some its debts; the cellarer's account for 1438/39 identified Thomas Castell of Newcastle and Geoffrey Mawer, for example, among the suppliers to whom money was paid from debts of several of the previous accounting years.

Besides the outsider merchants encountered at fairs, coastal towns, or perhaps occasionally in Durham's own market, one has the impression that men such as fishmonger Geoffrey Mawer and grocer John Salton were local suppliers, or at least regular visitors to the Durham market, and even more confidence that Thomas Spycer of Elvet, who in an account of 1427-28 is said to have made up medicines on various occasions for the Prior's household, was probably an apothecary based at Durham. The overall purchasing strategy seems to have been to buy in bulk at places – such as the Boston fair, or the port at Newcastle – where there was greatest choice and where better prices could be obtained on large purchases from importers, and then to meet interim needs, or perhaps a desire for fresh rather than preserved fish, by smaller purchases from more local suppliers who did business most days of the week. This was only common sense. It can be seen most clearly in the abbey's acquisitions of spices, and related groceries, of which monasteries were major consumers. There was no obvious dependence on the businessmen of urban Durham, and, apart from its market, the town was perhaps more important as a source of skilled and unskilled labour than of commodities.

The above extracts from the Durham accounts illustrate the complicated journey necessary to get abbey wool to the Boston fair and purchases back again. The return journey described involved a first stage along the River Witham from Boston to Lincoln, followed by a stretch at road from there to Torksey (that stretch of the Witham apparently not being navigable for barges at this time). From Torksey the goods were put back on boat to use the Fossdyke canal, connecting to the River Trent then the Ouse to reach Aldwark. The last and longest stage of the journey was then overland to Durham and must have taken several days, requiring overnight accommodations. A more direct route would have been up the coast to Newcastle-upon-Tyne, with a relatively short road trip from there; but this would also have been more risky and might have involved customs issues at Newcastle. Evidently the road system was not in so poor a condition as to encourage extra risk or expense. London was too far away for shopping trips – a road journey there in June 1544, via Darlington, Northallerton, Doncaster, Stamford, Huntingdon, and Royston taking six days – but its merchants brought goods up the coast to ports such as Newcastle, and a in 1336 a messenger bringing the prior a letter from an unnamed London merchant likely had something to do with an order for goods, past or present.

If London was too distant, and London merchants too infrequent visitors, to be a regular source of supplies, then the fairs of the region were also insufficient to meet the abbey's needs, especially for foodstuffs and spices. The monks evidently did some of their shopping locally, or at the markets and ports of towns of their own county or of Northumberland – venturing southwards more rarely, and then to Hull or the Boston fair.

Much the same picture of monastic commerce can be painted of another northern institution, Selby Abbey, from surviving obedientiary accounts [G. Haslop, "A Selby Kitchener's Roll of the Early Fifteenth Century", Yorkshire Archaeological Journal, vol. 48 (1976), pp.119-33]. The abbey was founded about 1069/70 under sponsorship of King William I and his wife, in response, legend has it, to the request of a monk from Auxerre, who claimed to have been inspired by a vision to establish a Benedictine house in northern Yorkshire; the foundation may have coincided with the birth of the future Henry I there, during a visit of king and queen. The site assigned the abbey lay on one bank of the tidal river Ouse and on a major land route between the Midlands and northern England, not very far from developing market centres such as York, Pontefract, Howden, Leeds, Tadcaster, and Market Weighton; this was a promising location for tapping into long-distance commerce. It was adjacent to a settlement which had existed from at least Viking, and probably Roman, times; medieval Selby became a busy port within the West Riding, and its marketplace lay just outside the abbey gates –: the Quo Warranto proceedings of 1293 show the abbey as the owner of Selby's market and fair. William Rufus gave the abbey to the Archbishop of York, and later the de Lacy family became principal patrons, paying for the rebuilding in stone of the original wooden monastery; the community comprised about two dozen monks, but also included a fluctuating number of artisans, lay servants, corrodians, and temporary guests, so that the total number of individuals to be fed, accommodated, and in some instances clothed, at any given time might well approach or exceed a hundred. Royal patronage attracted endowments of land and the abbey became one of Yorkshire's wealthiest, thanks too to its involvement in trading wool from its large flocks. Its presence must have done much to stimulate Selby's economy; the 1379 poll tax record shows residents included half a dozen merchants, a similar number of innkeepers, and artisans that suggest flourishing cloth, leather, and construction industries, the last also entailing some shipbuilding.

The kitchener's financial account for 1416/17shows that foodstuffs and other supplies obtained from abbey farms, warrens, orchards, and gardens, or from the abbey's cellars, were supplemented by rents in kind and through purchases.

Cattle, pigs and sheep were sourced from farms at locations within a few miles of Selby, though occasionally further afield, such as at Pontefract. Livestock surplus to abbey needs are recorded as sold to York butchers and others. Hides and pells of animals slaughtered for the abbey kitchen were sold to barkers or other tanners, while their fat, if not used for making candles for abbey use, might be sold to chandlers; even the intestines could find buyers in women who would cook up the offal into nutritious meals for the poor. Other foodstuffs surplus to abbey requirements may have been disposed of from Selby market stalls held by the abbey, though most of these stalls seem to have been rented out to locals.

Saltwater fish were bought in large quantities by abbey representatives sent to Scarborough (perhaps during its lengthy fair), Hull, and York, with purchases being shipped back along the Ouse, as well as from William Muston, a York resident who appears to have acted as a commercial agent for the abbey, not only by obtaining supplies in York markets, but perhaps by frequenting the herring fair at Yarmouth. Salmon or other freshwater fish, were available from abbey fisheries at Selby and at Crowle (on the Lincs./Yorks. border) as well as at locations further down the Ouse, such as Airmyn. William Pinne was another agent sent on abbey business, including for purchases, to locations such as York, Pontefract. and Howden

Food flavourings, such as spices, salt, almonds, honey, and figs might be obtained at York and, occasionally, as far away as London, though probably were mostly purchased from itinerant traders or the abbey's commercial agents, such as spicer Roger Selby of York.

Cloth, housewares, and hardware seem to have been bought from individuals, frequently named, perhaps local traders or regular visitors to Selby's market. The same is true also of building materials, although the abbey had a supplier of lime (for mortar) at Sherburn, whence it was sent by cart to Selby, building stone came from a quarry at Monk Fryston (six miles from Selby), whose name indicates it an abbey property, and some of the abbey's lumber came from trees on its estate, sawyers being hired to convert them into boards.



"Sir Thomas Percy"
He was at this time the king's sub-chamberlain, and subsequently steward of the king's household (1393-99) and Earl of Worcester.

de Tryple. Persian silk reached Tripoli via the caravan route through Aleppo, and entered Europe via Sicily.

"John Hauley"
Rickert describes him as a "piratical shipowner" and possibly the captain of the Maudelayne of Dartmouth of which Chaucer's shipman was captain.

"long iron"
Presumably bars or ingots of iron.

Silk manufacture represented a rare example of a craft that women were not simply permitted to follow in their own right, but almost monopolized, in London. Though they had no gild, they are seen acting collectively, and a number of the unmarried silkwomen seem to have chosen to live in close proximity to each other, on Soper Lane or its neighbourhood.

A written recognizance of debt, which gradually superseded the older wooden tally.

"Esher, Farnham:"
I am assuming these refer to places (in Surrey) rather than persons. the hundred of Farnham is known to have been under the lordship of the Bishop of Winchester; well-placed between Winchester and London, it was a stopover point for the bishops when journeying between the two cities.

"owes what he received"
Rickert states: "Obscure as this transaction is, it shows Maghfeld repaying an advance made by Henry. Earl of Derby, while in Prussia."

"Henry Vanner"
Sheriff 1391/92; though he had been dismissed from office in June 1392, and imprisoned, in relation to the city's refusal to make any more loans to Richard II. However, after his release Vanner was reinstated as alderman of Cornhill ward, and in receiving the loan from Maghfeld (who had succeeded him as sheriff) he was perhaps acting for the London corporation, although it is just possible the loan was related to a collection among the city aldermen to raise a gift intended to soften the king's anger towards the city.

"Saint Anton"
Rickert identifies this as the London church of St. Antonin. She suggests Maghfeld was acting as a general contractor for the work at the church, supplying materials and workmen.

While this may have been for the interior of the church, it could have been for an area beside the churchyard where we hear, in 1386, that a cloth-market had grown up.

The original has nonsenches, which is probably related to noncheon meaning lunch. Provision for a midday meal for workmen was a common protocol.

"Bishop of Exeter"
This would have been Bishop Brantingham, who also served as Treasurer to Richard II May-August 1389. His known career began as a clerk of the Exchequer in 1349 and continued in the royal bureaucracy until he was rewarded with consecration as bishop (1370). He died shortly before Christmas 1394, so his gravestone must have been advance preparation for his death. Just possibly the stone may have been carved by Henry Yevele, who is known to have produced tombstones for other important personages.

"long John"
That is tall John. The term is often found in London as nickname or surname, e.g. one John le Long was a carter in the early fourteenth century, while another was a toll-collector in 1343. Other references to long John in the ledger indicate that he operated a barge, known as a lighter, which transferred goods from quayside to ships anchored in deeper water.

"his buyer"
son Catour, assuming this item also belong to expenditures related to the Bishop of Exeter, would refer to the purchasing agent, or purveyor (deriving from the French achatour, hence the modern 'caterer') of provisions for the bishop's household.

The original has mesounger; it would be tempting to associate this with carving the stone's inscription, but the cost of a communication in regard to the items for the bishop is more down-to-earth; the term may alternatively related to transportation costs.

"Henry Scoggan"
Rickert notes that on September 7 1390 Scoggan and three other men acted as mainpernors in a plea of detinue of the sum of 106s.8d., and implies Scoggan may perhaps have been borrowing from Maghfeld his share of a bond in that amount.

"John Gower"
The entries related to him date to October 1392. Rickert reasonably assumes this was the fellow poet and friend of Chaucer. Gower was probably born in Kent to a gentry family that also held property in Yorkshire and East Anglia. He may have trained as a lawyer, though it does not seem he earned his living thus. His landed income was probably sufficient that he did not need to pursue a full-time occupation. He was based in London and known at the king's court; during the latter part of his life he and his wife lodged in Southwark, where he was benefactor to the Priory of St. Mary Overy and buried therein in 1408.

"Thomas Newenton"
The city's refusal of a loan to Richard II, mentioned above, prompted the angry king to suspend the city liberties and place London under a warden and sheriffs appointed by the king – the sheriffs were Newenton and Gilbert Maghfeld. In August 1392 he made a show of forgiving the citizens. Newenton and Maghfeld were continued in office by election and, the day following their assumption of office (Michaelmas), would have made the usual procession to the Tower to be presented to the king's representative there. The ledger item for Newenton's beaver hat – an article of dress that Chaucer has his merchant wearing – purchased through a loan from Maghfeld, points to the two men dressing in their finest clothes to participate in a parade by the gilds, accompanying them to the Tower, where their election to the shrievalty would receive (nominal) approval from the king's representative.

"because in scavage"
This marginal note is explained by Rickert as a reference to the covering of the cost of officials' uniforms out of the revenues from scavage, so that Maghfeld was expecting to recoup from the city chamberlains rather than Newenton himself, and would apparently record the payment in some other document.

"Jankyn Beauchamp"
Perhaps related to a plumber by name of Richard Beauchamp referenced in 1409, when exempted from jury service because so busy in work on the city conduit.

Perhaps the same as a fotmal?

"Roger de Kendale"
Another purchase from him was made on 29 June, of 125 dozen, at the same price. Lincolnshire seems to have been a centre for parchment making and other crafts related to manuscript and book production. A Luminour Lane in Lincoln points to the work of manuscript illuminators; we also hear of book-binders and book-sellers there in the fourteenth century. The royal itineraries often passed through Lincoln (where there was a royal castle), making it a convenient place to pick up supplies for the clerical staff who were part of his entourage. Furthermore, there was briefly a university at Stamford in the 1330s and a manuscript production center at Peterborough, which bolstered the market.

"Stephen Atte Merssh"
He was employed as the king's chief smith in the Tower of London, receiving a daily wage of 8d.

"Hawesia le Mattewife"
An identical purchase was made of her on 5 October, specified as for the use of the king and of the Exchequer, with the purchasing agent again being Bray, who was employed as the door-keeper janitor] and usher of the Great Exchequer, a role somewhat like an office manager, it seems, for he was in charge of a cadre of messengers and also looked after maintenance needs.

Another purchase from him was made on 5 October, of 84 dozen, at 3s. per dozen, and again on 14 January 1371, of 60 dozen at the same price. Newark-on-Trent was a Nottinghamshire mesne borough under the lordship of the Bishop of Lincoln.

"William Stodey"
He and his brother John were both vintners who lived in the Vintry, John being the alderman of that ward from 1352 (and mayor 1357/58). In 1344 John had acquired a twenty-year lease of a cloth warehouse in Thames Street. The family had evidently migrated to London from Norfolk, for William, when he died in 1375, made a monetary bequest to the church of the Norfolk village of Stody. John's daughters were married to Nicholas Brembre, John Philpot, and Henry Vanner.

"which they lent"
This entry, the next, and that of 19 June are just a few instances of a large number of entries relating to loans made on 25 May by the wealthier Londoners; many of the same men are recorded in Letter-Book G as making further loans to the king in February 1371. Repayment of these loans – perhaps from proceeds of locally collected customs (as was the case in 1371) – took place over the course of the next several weeks, with the last on 27 May. These loans may have been related to a need for cash to pay immediate expenses related to the organization of a military expedition, led by Sir Robert Knolles, to invade northern France. That project was the principal event to which the king devoted his attention in 1370, and entailed a great deal of effort in collecting the troops, mariners, supplies, and above all the ships to carry them across the Channel. The invasion ended in a disastrous defeat and disgrace for Knolles. Some, if not many, of the loans made the king by towns may also have been related to the financing of that expedition, or of a naval force to escort Charles II of Navarre from Cherbourg to England to discuss an alliance with Edward III; only a very few examples of those civic loans, representing East Anglian towns, are given above.

"Simon de Morden"
A stockfishmonger (from a family of stockfishmongers) and city alderman of Candlewick Street ward. Sheriff in 1364/65, mayor 1368/69. Died 1384.

"John Salman"
He was also tasked with supervising the payment of wages to the ships' crews and appears to have been sent to Flanders to hire the Dutch and Zealand ships and sailors. In 1376 there is reference to him in a London Letter-Book as being a salt-merchant.

"William Baret"
A merchant who in 1373 joined the Grocers' Company (but was not much active therein), he is seen in the 1370s importing wine from Portugal and exporting wool, and dabbled in selling cloth; his involvement in the wool trade continued in the 1380s. He invested some of his profits in real property (including four shops, and a part-share in a brewery) inside and outside the city; but he was not as inclined as some of his contemporaries to invest in loans to the Crown. His wife Alianora is believed to have been the daughter of Sir Hugh Baddow, from whom she inherited lands in several manors in the vicinity of London; but she died, childless, in 1401 and the lands reverted to the Baddow family. William was a common councillor in 1373 and sheriff in 1379/80. He was elected alderman of Aldgate ward in 1377, but translated to other wards at several points. One of these was during the period of factional strife, when he was moved to Cornhill ward in March 1383, after John Northampton had obtained (with Richard II's backing) re-election as mayor and John Philpot, opponent of Northampton, resigned as alderman of that ward; but after Brembre replaced Northampton in the next mayoral election later that year, Philpot was restored to the ward, and Baret once more only a common councillor. However, he never appears to have been a staunch supporter of Northampton, and was restored to aldermannic status in 1390, for Tower ward. After becoming involved in the dispute between Richard II and the city authorities in 1392, which went badly for the city, with the aldermen being forced to pay a fine to appease the king, William seems to have become disenchanted with politics, and is not much in evidence in the last decade and a half of his life (he died 1411), so perhaps had in effect retired. Having no children, most of his property was sold to finance a chantry in the church of St. Dunstan, where he and his wife were buried. Two wills under the name of William Baret were proven in the husting court, in 1412 and 1413; apparently for the same man, since each refers to a deceased wife Alianora and property in the parish of St. Dunstan near the Tower. That may have been the parish in which he was living in 1381, when targeted by the rebels who invaded the city with the connivance of.alderman John Horn; a group of them, suborned and led by Paul Salisbury, son of a Sir Thomas Salisbury who had leased to Baret the house in which the latter resided, used the cover of the situation to break into Baret's home, terrorize Baret and his wife, and coerce them into surrendering the lease agreement and a recognizance for £200 (possibly a guarantee that Sir Thomas or his heirs would not disturb their possession). Alternatively the house in question may have been one known as Le Sterre, in All Hallows Bread Street, although this seems to have been rented out to other tenants.

"King of Navarre"
Charles II had landed interests in Normandy and his own ambitions for claiming the French throne. Edward III went to some pains to arrange for Charles and his entourage to come over to England for secret negotiations, at Clarendon Palace, for the purpose of a joint military campaign. Charles had shown himself no friend of the French king; following the battle of Poitiers (1356) and the popular uprising in Paris, he, with support from Knolles, had temporarily held the city against the Dauphin in 1358. In 1369 he made another effort to assert himself in France, basing himself at Cherbourg, the principal town in what was left of his territories in Normandy. He had proposed the alliance to Edward, and it seemed advantageous to the latter, even though the opportunistic Charles was ever an unreliable ally. The alliance was made, but rendered impotent by the English defeat in 1371.

"cup silver gilt"
This was a common kind of gift, often filled with money, to visiting ambassadors or dignitaries of comparable rank. A second cup of same description and value was purchased from the same goldsmith as a gift for a second member of the embassy, Peter Tertre clerk (who was again the recipient of such a gift on 6 October). On 25 June a silver gilt cup of lesser value was given by Edward to the chancellor of the king of Scotland; it is not indicated from whom it was purchased, but we may imagine that the London goldsmiths did well out of the king's need for such gifts. Several cups of silver, enamelled were purchased in July (though it is not said from whom) as gifts to members of the retinue of the King of Navarre, once he would arrive.

The Lynn chamberlains' account for 1359/70 refers to a loan of 500 marks (£333 6s.8d.) to the king, in the item for expenses of its carriage to London by Geofrey Tolboth and Richard clerk; the loan per se is not accounted for and did not come out of community funds – it may have come from the merchant gild treasury, or from loans made by individual burgesses. The discrepancy between the amount despatched and the amount received looks suspicious, but we cannot point fingers at any party, in the absence of more information. The second item following this in the account is repayment to the men of Bristol for a loan of 500 marks to the king on 21 June. So rather than assume money has been embezzled at some point, just possibly there has been an error in the accounting record. Around the same date, Norwich lent 200 marks, Scarborough 100 marks, London £5,000. On 25 June John de Stalham, one of the Yarmouth customs collectors, was paid a pound as expenses for carrying royal letters to Hugh Fastolf, and the bailiffs of Yarmouth and Ipswich, requesting a loan, and the following day repayment was made to the men of Great Yarmouth for £121.13s.4d. lent on 22 June. These loans may possibly relate to the Knolles expedition, still being organized.]

Although haberdashers later became associated particularly with millinery, in the Middle Ages they, like the mercers, dealt in various small wares – not just clothing, notions, and personal ornamentation, but also things such as tableware, purses, playing cards, and some stationery. Although London's mercers might sell such things, their gild rules prohibited them from selling at rural fairs and markets, thus giving haberdashers an opportunity to take on that clientele.

"knight of Germany"
He was on an ambassadorial mission.

John de Chichester, who served as an alderman of Farringdon Within ward from 1357 to 1377, sheriff 1359/60, and mayor 1369/70. In 1356 he (among others) was accused by an inquisition jury of contributing to the pollution of the ditch surrounding the Fleet prison, by having installed a latrine that emptied into it. His will of 1380 mentions two shops, one in Cheapside, where goldsmiths' businesses congregated, the other in West Cheap. He had invested much of the profits from his trade in acquiring city real estate, or the rents therefrom, including an interest in several taverns: the Swan in Thames Street, the Saracen's Head in St. Clement's Lane, and the Tavern at the Bell, as well as Topfeldes Inn in Fleet Street. Some of these properties were bequeathed to the hospital of St. Katherine, near the Tower, to maintain a chantry to pray for the souls not only of himself but also of his late employers, King Edward and Queen Philippa. He was survived by his wife; after her death one property was to go to his son William (whose meagre inheritance might indicate an estrangement). Other properties were entailed to goldsmith John Frensh and Johanna Frensh (wife of another goldsmith), suggesting a family connection. In 1372 a man of this name was serving as one of the keepers of the wardrobe of the wife of the Black Prince, though it seems doubtful it could be the same man, unless he was acting as a London agent (for the purpose of obtaining a loan from the city for the princess).

"Hugh Fastolf"
The name of Hugh Fastolf appears quite frequently in the Treasurer's account of this year, for much of Fastolf's career was spent in royal service, and during 1370 he was heavily involved in assembling components of the fleet to convey the Knolles expedition, as well as a smaller naval and military force to escort Charles of Navarre safely back to Normandy, following his negotiations with Edward III. Hugh was himself at Clarendon Palace at some point in September to turn over the unexpended portion of funds he had been allocated, and perhaps to be briefed by Edward in what was expected of him. The ships Fastolf had commandeered, equipped for war, and provisioned for the main expedition, with crews he had recruited, were drawn from Boston, Lynn, Yarmouth and Ipswich; they were to assemble initially at Orwell and Sandwich and then proceed to Rye, where Knolles and part of his land force would embark, while ships from more northerly ports were to proceed to Winchelsea for embarkation of the remainder. Hugh captained one of the troop-carrying vessels during that voyage; his expense claims were still being paid off in the opening months of 1371. His maritime experience gained as a fish merchant and ship-owner was part of what qualified him for this kind of role, and a good part of his service to the king was in regard to naval defence of the east coast. He was combining these two aspects of his career by 1356, when licensed as supplier of fish to the Black Prince in Gascony and the prince's Norfolk-based household; another mixture is seen in 1372 when he was to be paid £180 for using one of his ships to provide armed escort for the wine fleet to Gascony, but had almost half the amount deducted after it was learned he freighted 80 tuns of wine on the return journey to Yarmouth. He is also seen importing salt from France, and exporting wool, cloth, ale, grain, and peas. Hugh followed the family tradition in political service to the Yarmouth community, serving ten ballival terms between 1354 and 1376 and several times representing the borough in parliament. He was, however, one of those wealthier townsmen who had gained local unpopularity, and some national notoriety, for domination of the herring trade; in the Good Parliament of 1376, where the privileges of the merchant patriciate of Yarmouth came under attack from both local and external complainants, Fastolf became one of its secondary targets for impeachment, after William Elys had been dealt with. Perhaps the local feuding was a factor in Hugh moving to London at the opening of Richard II's reign. However, it may also be explained by an ambition to expand his fishmongering business into the larger marketplace – he having already (1373) joined the Grocer's Company – and by his acquisition of landed interests in the city through his second marriage, to Joan Hanhampstead, the widow of a grocer and heiress of another grocer and former mayor. With in a few years of the move he was adopted into the ruling class, being first elected as a city alderman in 1381; later that year he was one of the particularly hated targets of the rebels, as well as of the vengeful Paul Salisbury, who treated Hugh's wife (to whom he was kin) much as he treated William Baret and his wife (see above). He served as city sheriff in 1387/88, but as opposition to Richard II grew, Hugh found his associations with the faction of Nicholas Brembre and with Sir Simon Burley, both executed during the session of the Merciless Parliament in early 1388, posed a threat to his own position. So in 1389 he refocused his attentions on East Anglia. Over the same period of his ascendancy at Yarmouth and then in London, Hugh had been building up landed estates in Norfolk and Suffolk (his first marriage having been partly to that end), to the point where he could be elected as sheriff of those counties in 1389. It has been estimated he held over a thousand acres of rural lands [A.R. Saul, Great Yarmouth in the 14th Century: a Study of Trade, Politics and Society, PhD thesis: Oxford University, 1975, p.230]; on some of them he raised sheep. He may have sensed his end approaching, for in 1391 he was placing some of his property in the hands of trustees and instructing them on its disposition after his death; yet despite that he died intestate the following year. His heir was his son by his first wife, Sir John Fastolf, one of the military commanders of Henry V and Henry VI in France, and inspiration for Shakespeare's Falstaff. Despite the absence of a will, few medieval townsmen are quite so well documented as Hugh Fastolf, nor led lives quite so eventful.

"cups and vessels"
These were gifts for members of Charles of Navarre's retinue.

Clarendon Palace, located near Salisbury, was converted from a Saxon royal hunting-lodge a palace by Henry II and Henry III. It fell out of use in the fifteenth century and was becoming dilapidated by the time of Elizabeth II; some ruins survive today.

"John de Chalton"
The will of a man of this name was proved in the London husting in 1382. He and his family resided in the parish of St. Botulph just outside Aldgate. The will is mainly concerned with pious and charitable uses and gives no hint as to his occupation, although a bequest to money towards the repair of roads and bridges is suggestive of someone who travelled as part of his occupation and quite likely a merchant of some kind.

"Robert de Wouborne"
One of the tellers of the Exchequer.

"Walter Forester"
Further instalments of this debt are paid at other times in the year. On two occasions Walter is referred to as a skinner. He was likely the man who stood as one of the sureties for Thomas de Thame skinner and his wife, when they were appointed guardians of the wife's niece, daughter of another skinner, in 1350; and who, the following year, was surety for payment of an inheritance to an apprentice fripperer once he had completed his apprenticeship. Also in 1351 he was a member of a commission of citizens appointed to assess a royal tax on the city. In November of that year he was one of three skinners chosen to represent his craft on what was, in effect, the Common Council of the city. Elected one of the sheriffs in 1355, during his term of office reforms were made to improve shrieval administration of justice. In 1360 he was one of two commoners sent, with a pair of aldermen, to represent the city at a council with the king to consult on defence of the realm. By 1363 he is identified as an alderman and continues to be evidenced in that post for the next decade. He is seen much involved with mercers, and a contemporary named Walter Forester was described as a mercer.

"manor of Rutherhuyth"
Edward III is known to have built, ca.1353, a manor house (of which some ruins remain) at Rotherhithe, on a piece of land rising out of marshland, immediately adjacent to the Thames, so that the king could arrive there by boat and dock at steps leading to a gatehouse tower. The purpose of this modest residence, surrounded by a moat, is uncertain, but one theory is that it was a place where Edward could exercise his falcons. The property at Greenwich and Bermondsey also acquired from Walter Forester (or Forster), might also have served the king for similar purpose, as the area now Greenwich Park was heathland in the Middle Ages and known to have been used in the fifteenth century for hawking. Walter's possession of the property may have been purely an investment, but the Thames coastline in the vicinity of Bermondsey, with its tidal streams, was useful to tanners in the Middle Ages, as well as being a potential stopping point for boats carrying hides; so Walter might have had a professional use for his property.

That is, chutes, or gangways, probably with high sides (but no roof), through which horses could be led onto ships – a more practical method for embarking and disembarking such a large number of horses than hoisting them on and off by some kind of crane or winch.

"necessary expenses"
The expenditures of this date were all related to the Knolles expedition.

"John de Ketelby"
Further purchases were made from him on 14 January 1471, of 100 dozen parchments at 2s.8d. the dozen, and on 18 February for the same (the goods again being delivered by John's servant).

"John Walsh"
He also supplied, on the same occasion, two other cups, of a combined value of £30.17s., as gifts for members of an embassy from Charles of Navarre; and he had been the supplier of such wares on 21 June (see above). Walsh's will of 1384 indicates he and his second wife lived in the parish of St. Swithun in Candlewick ward and mentions the shop he was leasing in West Cheap – probably his main place of business; he owned other properties, including a shop, in St. Swithin parish, a tavern called the Bell on the Hoop in the suburban ward of Bishopsgate, and a manor in Essex. No children are evidenced by either of his wives, although he bequeathed some of his property to a step-daughter (of his first wife) and her draper husband.

"John de Balton"
On 30 October a paper notebook was purchased from him, to be used by the clerks of the Treasurer for keeping their draft accounts.

"Thomas de Gloucester"
In 1351 he arranged with the bridge wardens to take out a life lease of a shop on London Bridge, at 36s.8d. annual rent; this being a year after he and his wife Sarah were minor beneficiaries of the will of Hugh de Robury glover, who was to be buried in the church of St. Magnus, Martyr, near London Bridge. Perhaps Thomas' shop became a favoured supplier to Edward III, for at several points in 1370 he is paid instalments of an annuity of 100s. granted by for good service, suggesting regular employment by the king; on one of those occasions he is referred to as 'of London Bridge', and his shop probably included a solar where he resided.

"John de Grafton"
See above, 27 June. On 22 November a further purchase was made of him: hanapers, parchment, sealing wax, ink, and other unspecified necessaries, for £1 19s.10d., while on 9 February 1371 were bought from him various parchments – 2 rolls for copies of documents issued under the Privy Seal (in this case, probably writs authorizing payments by Treasurer or Chamberlains, which were copied onto the Liberate Rolls), one large roll for recording Exchequer receipts – account books (probably used for drafts of what would later be written up more carefully as the Issue Rolls), sealing wax, loose paper and other necessaries, with a total price of £3 1s.4d. Grafton was also a supplier to the household of Queen Philippa, a debt of 33s.8d. being due him at the time of her death in August 1369.

A skippet was a small box used for storing documents or seals (by contrast with the larger container of a hanaper).

"Guido de Rouclyf"
Just possibly a member of the York family of this name, of which Guy de Roucliffe served as the city's recorder 1425-60 and his lawyer son became a Baron of the Exchequer. A Guy de Rouclif clerk, warden of the mint in the Tower of London, was involved in a suit of detinue at York in 1392, but obtained a writ of supersedeas; he died early the following year.

"Roger Crane"
Probably a Londoner, as the text of the entry suggests purchases were made from him locally. A man (or men) of this name was in 1371 surety for the guardianship of a widow for her underage son, and a juror for an inquisition held in Farringdon ward in 1382. A slightly surer association may be made with the Roger Crane who, in 1385, was one of a small group of haberdashers sworn in as wardens of their craft.

Situated on a tributary of the River Tees, it had borough status by 1183. Its market and fair, owned by the Bishop of Durham, are first mentioned in 1293. The fair was the closest to Durham (beside Durham's own).

in the original is a term that might also be used for dill.

The closest port to Durham (17 miles away), it originated as a village that grew up around a seventh-century abbey, adjacent to a natural harbour; although the abbey was destroyed by the Vikings, Hartlepool's post-Conquest seigneurial Bruce family granted a charter around the third quarter of the twelfth century, giving the burgesses self-government, the customs of Newcastle, a market, and a fair, and King John later gave official sanction to a market one day a week, and a three-day fair. In 1230 the Bishop of Durham, within whose liberties Hartlepool lay, granted a second day for a market, confirmed by Henry III's charter of 1234. When Robert Bruce took the throne of Scotland, Edward I seized the lordship of Hartlepool into his own hands and proceeded to fortify the small town, though not fast enough to prevent it being sacked by a Scottish force in 1315.

The original has "oleag.[ium]" which usually means aulnage, an official measurement of cloth. Richard I's Assize of Measures having prescribed that all cloth produced for sale be of two ells width (and be of consistent quality throughout), once this became the basis for customs assessment, an officer to check compliance to this standard was introduced under Edward I, and such aulnagers appointed in various localities. The standard could not be maintained as the English cloth industry grew and cloths of varying sizes and qualities were produced, but it remained necessary to measure cloths for customs purposes. When the term was used for wine, as occasionally found, it must refer to measurement either by weight or by size of the cask.

This likely refers to the fee for using ropes and pulley to hoist the casks out of the ship in which they were brought.

"William Servat"
A London merchant, who was originally from the Cahors district of south-western France. This example of his trade with Durham priory illustrates the reach that London merchants could have in distributing imported goods throughout England. Servat, however, was exceptional, being the foremost pepperer in London (indeed, in England as a whole) at that period, the head of a company of Cahorsin merchants, exporting wool and importing wine, cloth, and spices. William is evidenced exporting wool as early as 1272, before he settled in London; he had citizenship by 1292, when in the subsidy of that year he was taxed in Cordwainer ward; he had one of the higher assessments, though he had not yet outstripped Thomas Romeyn. He operated an inn in the ward to host other Cahorsin merchants. In 1301 he sent for his young son to join him, although the family name would not remain prominent in the city. Indications of his rise are his election as alderman of Walbrook ward in 1309 (to his death in 1318) and that in 1315 Edward II owed him £2,073 for cash loans, wine purchases, and provisions for Dundee and for a ship to carry the queen to France. William thus acted as a purveyor and financier for the king, mainly dealing with Cahorsin and Italian merchants.

"rock sugar"
That is, purchased in a lump formed from large sugar crystals, rather than in the fine granular form in which sugar is today more commonly marketed. One of those Arabic products brought back to Europe following the Crusades. Rock sugar is today better known as rock candy or candy sugar.

A cloth with bluish tinge.

A coarser cloth that could be left undyed in the reddish brown colour of the raw wool, or its quality improved by dyeing it to give a brown or grey tint. It tended to be used for clothing worn by poorer people – an association reinforced by sumptuary legislation of 1363, which required agricultural labourers to dress in cheaper russets or blanket – but the plain and sombre grey was also suitable for everyday wear as well as for evincing piety (and so was favoured by mourners as well, later, as Lollards), whereas more prosperous followers of fashion preferred clothing of vivid colours. Colchester was one of the cloth-making towns noted for its well-made russets; though neither catering for the lower end of the market nor producing the finer types of this cloth, its russets were good enough for Henry III to buy them for his servants. Colchester russet was well-known in England, but perhaps less so in foreign markets; a thirteenth-century text written in Paris describing suitable stock for a draper's shop mentions instead russet from Leicester and Oxford.

A woollen cloth dyed dark brown. It seems to have been of relatively fine quality.

Lay servants of the abbey, possibly like valets or perhaps even men-at-arms (recalling that Durham was vulnerable to Scottish incursions).

"Lincoln say"
A serge (somewhat like modern denim) for whose production Lincoln was noted.

The original's "garcionibus" refers to male, lay servants junior to the valets, often young men or even boys, used as personal attendants, table servers, messengers, etc.

Lambskin with the wool still intact, used for making hoods.

The fur of stoats or other small animals.

A kind of muslin, according to Fowler.

"Moroccan sugar"
Like rock sugar, this came in a rock-hard lump, but is perhaps the two are distinguished because Moroccan sugar was often formed into a cone shape (depicted in some medieval illustrations).

Ginger was often shipped packaged in large gourds.

A spice imported from the Far East, better known today through its relative turmeric; It had cuisinary and medicinal uses in the Middle Ages.

"table-cloth, towel"
Both probably linen, the -hand-towelling for table use.

A textile cover for a piece of furniture, usually a seat or bench, but also sometimes used on other furniture,

One of the abbey's manors, near Billingham, which was on the road south to York.

A kind of saltwater fish, consumed in large numbers at Durham. Its modern counterpart is uncertain; but since these fish were evidently large, possibly cod.

"related items"
That is, related to the plan to preserve the fish by curing and drying.

"bolting cloth"
For sifting flour.

A kind of pepper, used mainly to make sauces and for medicinal purposes.

Doubtless refers to the location where the abbey's wool was stored; possibly the prior's manor of Pittington.

Possibly Stalybridge, a Cheshire manor known as Stavely or Staley before the bridge was built in the 18th century.

Possibly Wallridge, Nortumberland. The list of honey suppliers may suggest they were drawn into Durham county by a fair at Darlington or at Durham itself.

There is no shortage of Newtons in Cheshire, Lancashire, Nurthumberland, or County Durham.

Not quite in the modern sense, but rather one tasked with purchase (achats) of provisions, as opposed to the bursar, who administered the payments, but probably did not deal directly with suppliers, except possibly at fairs where large purchase sums were involved. See note above.

"Old Borough"
The part of Durham later known as Crossgate was the product of the earliest planned urban development, around crossroads, following the translation of the shrine of St. Cuthbert to Durham (where a village, Elvet, already existed in the same vicinity, in the protection of a loop in the River Wear) to put it more out of reach of the depredations of Vikings and Scots. The old borough is first mentioned in 1141, when it belonged to the abbey. The name differentiates it from the Bishop's Borough on the other bank of the Wear founded probably by Bishop Flambard in the early twelfth century. Elvet itself was transformed into a borough by Bishop Pudsey (1153-95), who also built a bridge there, which diverted traffic away from the Old Borough (likely the original trading centre), to the benefit of the Elvet/Bishop's Borough corridor and sending the Old Borough into decline.

"red herring, white herring"
Gutted herring were cured in brine; then some were dried and smoked, which gave them a red colour, white herring were uncured fish, shipped in brine. Large quantities of this staple of the medieval diet of the lower classes were consumed, including by monasteries, which could be home to perhaps hundreds of clerics and lay servants. The nobility preferred, partly for reasons of status, to eat more expensive fish such as pike, lamprey, sturgeon, or salmon.

Here it may refer to a weight in pounds, just as thousand and hundred were often used to refer to weights rather than quantities.

"John Byrtley"
Elsewhere referred to as a chaplain, he was perhaps the prior's chaplain, whose duties included running the prior's household, including purchasing clothing for the prior, although the money came from the bursar.

"Robert Marshall"
A London grocer, who in 1431, along with another grocer and a mercer, was commissioned as a collector of a royal tax, which required them to assign four men per ward to levy the assessments. Served as sheriff 1439-40. He is mentioned in a will of 1461 as being deceased; interestingly, the testator, who evidently had a close relationship with Marshall, held property at Newcastle and Gateshead.

A sort was a quantity equivalent to three frails.

Used in cooking as a red colouring.

Literally, raisins of Corinth, since they originated as a product of the black grapes grown at Corinth.

Perhaps pickled?

The actual title of this section is Marscalcia, which would mean farrier's supplies, but the scope of the purchases is clearly beyond this.

"fat skimmings"
That is the melted fat that floats to the top of the water in which meat is boiled; hence the Latin flotagium.

The original has sevvez, possibly meaning some kind of metal grill or griddle pertaining to the furrow plough.

Perhaps Cowpen, a village close to the Northumberland coast, north of Newcastle.

Just south-west of Durham.

Large dishes.

"name derives"
On this see G. M. Draper, "Timber and Iron: Natural Resources for the Late Medieval Ship-building Industry in Kent," in Later Medieval Kent, 1220-1540, ed. Sheila Sweetinburgh. Woodbridge: Boydell Press, 2010, p.75.

"Small Hythe"
Originated as a mid-thirteenth century settlement on a branch of the River Rother, although it was not until the 1330s, when damming had diverted the river and made it sufficiently wide and deep to accommodate sea-going vessels, that maritime-related activities were fostered, partly to meet the obligations of Cinque Ports to provide ships for royal service. It reached its peak of activity, in terms of building, repairing, and breaking up ships, in the fifteenth century, Lancastrian and Tudor monarchs commissioning a number of ships to be constructed there, but declined due to the usual silting problems and fire damage to its facilities in 1514.

James represents the transaction as a rental agreement, although it looks to me more like a trustee arrangement, one of Maghfeld's associates being a chaplain.

His ledger shows around eighty debtors, including nobles, prominent ecclesiastics, and London citizens. His money helped Richard II finance an expedition to Ireland in 1394.

"guardian of the seas"
From Maghfeld's perspective this was a business opportunity. In return for him and his associates (Robert Parys, a fellow ironmonger, with whom Maghfeld had business dealings, and two seamen) providing ships to patrol the coast between late May 1383 and late September 1384, they were to receive a lump sum payment and, during the same period, the proceeds from tunnage and poundage collected in all ports between Winchelsea and Berwick (with the power to appoint collectors of those customs) and half of any fines levied on those who failed to pay customs due. It appears this farming out arrangement was caught up in politics, for a decision in the parliament that convened in October – which had to deal with some of the fallout of the Northampton-Brembre power struggle – led to the king's council cancelling the agreement in December 1383. There had been complaints by London merchants that piracy continued despite the engagement of Maghfeld and his associates, though whether these were justified or a pretext put forward by the Brembre faction is hard to judge – although the Brembre regime made some effort to force Maghfeld to answer in the city court, there is no evidence he acceded to demands, and the king displayed no interest in pursuing the matter. Maghfeld had some small retribution when, after Brembre's trial and execution in 1388, he obtained some of the Middlesex estates forfeited by the ex-mayor, a grant confirmed by the king in 1396.

"then Boston"
For some reason Maghfeld did not initially take up his duties at Southampton, and soon afterwards received the Boston post, which he held from 1386-87; in 1388 was reappointed to Southampton, but after eight months of service obtained the London position. These appointments are indications of Richard II's intervention in customs service appointments, which customarily had gone to local men.

"Margery James"
"A London Merchant of the Fourteenth Century," Economic History Review, n.s., vol.8 (1956), 364-76, included in a collection of her essays published under the title Studies in the Medieval Wine Trade (1971). Her careful and thorough analysis of the transactions recorded in the ledger, and conclusions she drew therefrom, form the basis for my account, though augmented from other sources.

"assessed for historical credibility"
For a recent paper along these lines, see Andrew Galloway, "The Account Book and the Treasure: Gilbert Maghfeld's Textual Economy and the Poetics of Mercantile Accounting in Ricardian Literature," Studies in the Age of Chaucer, vol.33 (2011), 65-124.

"the order in which they appear"
Here I have given selected entries in the order in which they are given in James' paper, there being no advantage to re-ordering them chronologically.

"entries in the business ledger"
The volume is an unsophisticated list of transactions and memoranda, with later annotations or cancellations of debts that had been paid. No effort was made to keep track of cumulative profit or loss.

"been noted"
By Pamela Nightingale, cited in Galloway, op.cit., pp.73-74. Galloway, however, favours James' explanation of an Maghfeld's unpopularity as a puppet sheriff of the king, and suggests that it partly was in order to repair his damaged reputation that Maghfeld gave more attention to money-lending to fellow-citizens, and also explains his donation, in late 1392, of land to his parish church for use as a cemetery.

"Ste. Mary's Knight"
This was not, it seems, Maghfeld's first involvement with this vessel, for copied into his ledger are notes concerning a ship of that name. One being a copy of a contract, dated February 1394, whereby Yarmouth merchant (and four-time bailiff) Roger Drayton purchased from the captain of the ship, then indicated to be a Hanseatic vessel (of Danzig), his cargo of coal, but arranged for him to carry it to the port of London for delivery to Roger there; payment to be made, at 6s.6d. per chaldron of coal (by London measure), within 14 days of the unloading. The others being a note of the arrival of the ship at London in March, and a personal letter from Drayton to a "dear friend" - perhaps Maghfeld, but more probably some foreign merchant to whom Maghfeld was playing host. The letter indicates that Drayton had gone to London hoping to make contact, and do business, with his 'friend' but, despite going to the host's house several days in a row, had failed to find him there, and so had resorted to written communication. Maghfeld added a memorandum of receipt of the letter on 2 April, and of having sold the coal eight days later for 4s.6d the chaldron. If Drayton had paid the ship's master as per contract, someone had taken a loss, though it is unclear who. Whether and how this transaction might relate to his later purchase of the ship (assuming it was not another of identical name), which would have had to pass from its Hanseatic master to the Lucca merchant, is unclear.

"almost permanently"
Except, notably, when the king's attention was focused on wars in Scotland or Wales and the Exchequer (or elements thereof) and the Great Wardrobe transferred to Carlisle or Berwick, under Edward I, or to York or to Shrewsbury under Edward III, sometimes for prolonged stays, such as in 1327/28 when St. Leonard's hospital was used by royal officials, and from 1333-37, when two houses were rented in York for the Great Wardrobe, with a branch office or storehouse being maintained at Newcastle. The war with France was a major factor in returning the focus of government to, and consolidating it in, Westminster, even though elements of the Great Wardrobe would accompany the king on expeditions to Flanders or France.

The Treasurer's account does however include seasonal payments to to the king's own minstrels.

"Wardrobe, Household"
These became differentiated within the royal bureaucracy on the basis that, essentially, the Household provided for the daily or immediate needs of the king and his entourage, in terms of consumables, whereas the Wardrobe needed to plan for longer-term needs and obtained, through prises on imported cargoes or by bulk purchases (when favourable prices could be had), supplies of commodities that might not be needed immediately but would keep for some time – such as cloth, furs, furniture, tableware, military equipment, and certain groceries (e.g. spices and other dry goods). So the branch known as the Great Wardrobe functioned as a warehouse, while also having associated with it buyers/purveyors and a range of artisans (at different periods, such as a confectioner of spices, tailor, embroiderer, tapestry-maker, painter, goldsmith, saddler, masons, carpenters, and armourers of various specializations), some permanent some engaged as needed, who would keep purchased items in repair and manufacture some of what was needed. Both the Wardrobe and the Household had materials management and financial/administrative dimensions, but the Wardrobe in particular – because managing a large inventory – benefited from a central permanent base, rather than carting huge quantities of goods around in wagon trains after a peripatetic monarch. Although warehouses were sometimes rented in other towns, London was a convenient base for a number of reasons: the location there of other components of the bureaucracy; adequate accommodations for a large staff; the desirability of having treasury and archives in stable and (relatively) secure housing; easy access to London markets and to wealthy London merchants who could be tapped for loans; and the fact that the road system converged there, while via the Thames supplied could be shipped to the king when overseas.

"surviving Exchequer documentation"
Described in some detail by Tout. op.cit., vol.1, pp.36-66. The Tower was used for warehousing, and eventually became a specialized branch of the Wardrobe as a military supply depot, but in addition houses were rented at various locations in London. Extracts from a number of the accounts are given by Frederick Devon in Issues of the Exchequer, Henry III to Henry VI. London: 1837, although his selections are made mostly because of connections to historic events or personages or on the basis of their unusual or unusually descriptive nature.

According to Caroline Barron, London in the Late Middle Ages, Oxford University Press, 2004, p.78, there were over 44 aristocratic townhouses in the city by 1300 and about 75 by 1540. Their owners would use these, or their wardrobe properties, to store produce carted from their estates to the London markets, and to hold goods purchased in those markets to take back home.

"John Crouche"
Possibly the John Crouchier who, in 1423, was among several members of the vintners gild to sponsor the transfer to that gild of a former embroiderer.

"John de Gisors"
Although technically a pepperer, was one of London's leading wine dealers; he owned a ship and had his own carts for transporting wine casks. His usual political role was as alderman (ca.1251) probably of Vintry ward, though in 1258/59 he was London's mayor. The surname suggests a Norman background for the family, but it also had a branch established in Gascony. John married a sister of Arnold fitz Thedmar and by her was father to a dynasty of aldermen. He held numerous properties in London, and several manors (mostly by lease) in Essex, Hertfordshire, and Kent. Williams [Medieval London: from Commune to Capital, rev. ed., London: Athlone Press, 1970, 325] estimated that Gisors sold an annual average of £53 worth of wine to the royal household between 1236 (when he was appointed the king's butler) and 1261. At the same time that he sold the wine in 1259 he also supplied nine cartloads of lead for roofing the queen's new chamber at Windsor. In 1236 he had sold almonds, dates, grapes, and gingerbread to the king's household, and in 1245 is seen buying wheat for the household. Furthermore, he made periodic loans to the king. In 1246 he was rewarded with an exemption from prise on his own wines, which was confirmed in 1253, and in 1262 was appointed Master of te Exchange. He was succeeded as butler in 1256 by his own brother, Peter de Gisors, an alderman, who likewise sold his own wine to the household during his five-year term of office. John died in 1282.

"Stephen de Chelmersford"
A sometime business partner of Peter de Gisors. Like John de Gisors he supported the royalist cause during the civil war, and the pair were part of a small group that tried to trap de Montfort's forces outside the city walls as the royalist army approached, though the London populace intervened to assure the Montfortians entrance and sanctuary.

"Philip le Taylur"
He is first recorded selling wine to the royal household in 1256, and he continued to do so regularly up to 1280; Williams [op.cit., p.332] estimated his annual average income from this at £68, with a peak in the early 1260s. In he 1250s he and a partner purchased exemptions from royal prises of large wine cargoes; but in 1267 he was rewarded with a lifetime exemption from prises, and with what amounted to an exemption from tallage (his assessment being set so low as to be nominal). Though wine was the largest component of his mercantile activities, in 1275 he was selling cloth, and the following year, when referred to as a mercer, he sold grain to the king, while four Londoners acknowledged owing him 20 marks for barley. Of an established but undistinguished London family, he leveraged commercial success into social advancement first through his election as alderman of Billingsgate ward in 1260, a post held up to 1292, then by election as sheriff in 1261, and finally by marrying (ca.1264) into the urban blue-blood family that had given London its first mayor. This marriage also brought him several pieces of city property, and he continued to build his city holdings throughout his life, as well as acquiring leases of a couple of Kent manors. It also, along with his mercantile-based prosperity and landed investments, cemented his place and his values in the city patriciate. He was the preferred mayoral candidate of the patricians in 1272, but the election was disturbed by popular outcry in favour of Walter Hervy, so that the king had to intervene to oblige both candidates to step aside. Philip died at an uncertain date ca. 1292; in 1319 his widow, Sabina, was the wealthiest tax-payer in Vintry ward, and indeed one of the wealthier of the entire city (Philip's tax exemption having of course lapsed).

"William de Gloucester"
Henry III (who commissioned works from many goldsmiths as donations to religious institutions) was in the 1250s not only purchasing from William items such as gold cloth and clasps, as well as unworked gold, he also had William supervise restoration of damaged items. In 1252, barely a year after we first hear of him undertaking work for the king, William was referred to as the king's goldsmith. The following year he produced 141 rings and brooches just for the king's purposes; in 1257 he produced the first gold pennies in England (a coinage experiment that could not be maintained, due to a lack of gold), in 1259 a new seal for Henry, and in the last few years of his life (he died 1269) was engaged on the creation of a gold shrine to St. Edward for Westminster Abbey. His value to Henry is suggested by the fact that despite his support of fellow Londoners in their opposition to the king during the civil war, for which he earned a spell in prison, he had been restored to his royal duties by 1267. William married the daughter of fellow goldsmith Michael de St. Helena, master of the king's mint. Their son Richard, a moneyer, was elected sheriff in 1295 and rose into aldermannic ranks; the family name continued for some generations to be associated with goldsmithing.

"John de Northampton"
The first skinner to reach aldermannic rank, he was alderman of Aldgate ward from 1260 to 1287 and a merchant who employed several factors. Beginning in the 1250s and continuing to 1282, he regularly supplied he royal household with large quantities of furs, thanks to his connections with Baltic merchants. Williams [op.cit., p.63] estimated that his annual average was £54, peaking in the 1250s at £240 annual average. He married into the established patriciate family of Viel and founded a new dynasty.

These covered a wide range of items, the most important of which was pepper – hence many spice-merchants were originally called pepperers – with ginger and cinnamon (which had both cooking and medicinal uses) also in heavy demand from those who could afford them. Because the costs in importing relatively small quantities were well outweighed by the high profits that could be made, this was the most lucrative field within international trade.

"fair of St. Ives"
The St. Ives fair was granted to Ramsey Abbey in 1110, to last for a week beginning the Monday of Easter week. It had become one of the leading fairs of England by the early thirteenth century, its relative proximity (in Huntingdonshire) to London and to the ports of East Anglia being an advantage. A second fair was granted the abbey in 1202 for August.

"Adam Bury"
A skinner and staple merchant, he had a long tenure as alderman of Langbourn ward (1348-76), during which he was sheriff (1349-50) and three times elected mayor (1364, 1365, 1373); he also served as mayor of Calais (1370-72), where he held property. It was in that capacity, but mainly as an associate of acting-chamberlain William Latimer, who became the leader of a court faction in the years when Edward III was enfeebled and the Black Prince mortally ill, and of customs farmer Richard Lyons, that Bury fell afoul of politics, in a notorious case which suggests how the Wardrobe's financial operations were susceptible to corruption. Lyons was a self-made man, a London vintner who had become wealthy by virtually monopolizing the sale of sweet wines in London, at high prices; as early as 1365 he was renting from the city several taverns officially assigned for the sale of such wines. This, along with financial support he provided to John of Gaunt, drew him into an association with the king's household, brought him a seat on the king's council and appointment as warden of the king's mint; having been made a city alderman in 1374 and sheriff the following year, and undertaken to loan the king 20,000 marks, he obtained the farm of customs and subsidies and acted as collector of petty custom at London. In the Good Parliament (1376) the enemies of Latimer and Lyons accused them, and of various serious offences, such as siphoning off money from the royal treasury to provide the loan, and negotiating the repayment at £20,000, with the large usurious surplus being split between the pair, and of exploiting the staple system to generate personal profit. Associates of Latimer and Lyons, along with anyone else who spoke up in their defence, were also the targets for charges. Among the accusations against Bury was that he had embezzled money intended to be spent on defending Calais, had destroyed the Exchange in London in favour of that at Calais, and kept a mint in his house for private profit. Impeachment proceedings were undertaken, with Gaunt unable to stem the tide. Lyons attempted to evade conviction and imprisonment by sending the Black Prince a barrel of gold, disguised as a barrel of fish, but the prince rejected it; nor was the king willing to give any support to Lyons. Bury avoided his summons to trial by fleeing to Flanders; he was discharged from his aldermannic post. He returned only when a subsequent parliament, influenced by the opposing political faction (of Gaunt) had him included in a pardon. Lyons too was pardoned, though he remained a popular icon of corrupt government who would be killed during the Peasants' Revolt. It is likely enough that some of the charges against Bury were warranted, and it is notable that his will, drawn up in November 1385 and proven the following February leaves almost all his city property to fund chantries for the good of his soul, although his daughter, the wife of Sir Andrew Cavendish, challenged it in regard to rents due from properties in their possession.

"Nicholas Picot"
He was sued by Adam de Foleham junior in 1299 for having lost custody of a debtor whom he, as alderman, had earlier arrested at Adam's suit; Nicholas defended that the debtor had escaped while in transit between his custody and the household of the king's Steward, who had wanted to question him. His will of ca. 1312 is notable for its requirement, at a rather early period, that the testator's two sons attend school and study until able to converse and recite reasonably well; Nicholas may well have been educated to at least that level himself, and he had married his daughter Juliana to Hugh de Waltham, who was the sheriffs' clerk ca.1290 to ca.1307 and by 1311 was common clerk of the city (until 1335). Waltham was himself interested in the education of the citizenry; he it was who initiated the compilation of London's Letter-Books and copied into the Liber Custumarum a treatise on good government of cities. Picot bequeathed Hugh and Juliana a life interest in his capital messuage, and one suspects that he was counting on Hugh to act as guardian to his underage sons.

"Adam de Foleham"
In 1280, when the city authorities issued an extensive set of statutes governing the fishmongers, the wardens they then appointed to police the statutes included, for the eastern market, Adam de Fuleham le Rous (the Red) and Adam de Fuleham Parvus (the Lesser). Adam de Fulham senior, alias le Blund, was elected alderman of Bridge Ward in 1291 (a post held to 1307) and sheriff in 1297 (both during a period of royal wardenship); the family holdings seem to have clustered in Bridge Street, where Adam also owned a wharf, although Adam came to hold property in seven parishes. In July 1304 he complained to the king that, a thief had broken into his chamber by night, broken open his chests, and carried off the records related to his aldermanry, his private deeds, obligations, tallies, and other documents, jewellery and other goods, with damages at £300, but that the mayor's court had failed to take action on the matter and arrest the alleged culprit; he obtained a writ ordering the court to act, and a trial got underway, but the resolution is not recorded. The following year he was himself the accused of a nuisance, when the wardens of London Bridge charged that Adam had erected a house at the north end of the bridge, in the parish of St. Magnus the Martyr, which obscured the view of houses on the bridge and impeded the course of the river. Adam was the leading fishmonger of his day, supplying the royal household with about £200 worth of fish annually. So it is hardly surprising to find his commercial activities occasionally under suspicion. In 1300 Adam de Fulham senior was one of a large group (which also included two others of the same surname) of fishmongers accused of selling too dearly, but acquitted by a jury. In 1305 he and his journeyman Humphrey were among a large group of Bridge Street fishmongers presented for forestalling fish en route to the city; a jury acquitted most of them, but found Adam guilty of purveying more lampreys for the king than he actually turned over to the royal household, in order to sell the remainder for his own profit. He also exported wool, sold German timber, and provided financial backing for colleagues. He married the sister of alderman Henry de Duresmes and ca.1291 was appointed a guardian of the daughters of Walter le Blund, the Blunds being a long-established aldermannic family. Adam was dead by 1310, when his son and heir Thomas testified to the authorities that citizenship applicant Humphrey de Foleham, fishmonger, had completed a seven-year apprenticeship to Adam (although Adam had never bothered to have the apprenticeship registered). He may have died not long after Edward II's coronation took place.

"Thomas Brun"
A Thomas Broun was taxed in Walbrook ward in 1292, and acted, along with Adam Broun and John de Sabricheworth, as a warden of the poultry market in 1299 (to check for the false coin called pollards). The Poultry was adjacent to the northern tip of Walbrook ward. Adam Broun's will of ca.1316, describing him as a poulterer, left shops in St. Mildred Poultry parish to be sold, with first refusal offered to a girdler, and specified that other shops in St. Mary Woolchurch parish (close to the Poultry) go to his wife Lucy for as long as she remain unmarried; Lucy successfully challenged this clause on the grounds of deeds she produced to show that she and Adam had acquired the shops jointly, and that he could not therefore restrict her possession. A Thomas le Brun had died ca.1272, leaving underage sons and several properties, but no connection with our Thomas Brun can be made.

"Walter de Hakeney"
A little less conspicuous in the records, he was nonetheless another fishmonger in whom the authorities had confidence, for later in 1307 he was appointed one of the scrutineers of baskets of fish-dealers, to check if they were the standard size, and in 1299 had served as one of the wardens of the Old Fish Market (to check for pollards). In 1300 he was among a large group of fishmongers acquitted of the charge of selling too dearly. An accusation of forestalling fish made in 1305 against a large group of Old Fish Street fishmongers, including Walter's journeyman Richard, also resulted in a jury acquittal. In June 1307 he stood surety for Adam de Ely when Adam prosecuted Robert le Benere on the charge of being a frequent purchaser of putrid fish, which he then resold from his stall. Walter's will (1314/15) left half of his shop in the parish of St. Nicholas Cole Abbey (Queenhithe ward) to his wife Agnes, who is taxed in Castle Baynard ward in 1319, and mentions other property in neighbouring St. Mary Magdalene parish (straddling Queenhithe and Castle Baynard wards), and in Hackney. The churches of St. Nicholas and Mary Magdalene faced onto the stretch of Fish Street later known as the West Fish Market (linked to the Thames by a street running south to the Fish-hithe); this street market had been established in the late twelfth century, well before Billingsgate became the predominant fish-market. It was in this vicinity, on Old Fish Street, linking Fish Street and Thames Street, that the fishmongers gild later had their first meeting hall. The proximity of Hackney to London meant that the surname was not uncommon in the city; so we cannot be sure that others of the surname – such as the fishmonger Richard de Hakeneye who lived in Queenhithe ward (1292) or the Hamo de Hakeneye fishmonger taxed in Castle Baynard ward in 1319 – were in any way related.

"Henry de Redenhale"
He went by the alias Henry le Fisshemonger according to Eilert Ekwall, Two Early London Subsidy Rolls, 1951, URL: Date accessed: 25 January 2014], though I find little about him under either name. Henry de Redenale, fishmonger was admitted as a citizen in October 1311, without fine, at the instance of the Bishop of Worcester (at that time Chancellor, and earlier in his career governor of Edward II as a child). Despite his surname linking him to the village of Redenhall in Norfolk, it seems Henry had some trading connections in western England that the city authorities wanted to exploit; perhaps he was a commercial agent for the Bishop.

"Roger le Palmer"
In 1283 two Bordeaux men acknowledged a debt of 40s. to a Roger le Paumer, though not the man who helped provision the coronation; he may be the same as the Roger le Paumer 'blader' (another term for cornmonger) to whom in February 1302 a goldsmith transferred by deed a debt of 43 marks owed by Henry le Coupere, baker, who had been arrested and his real estate seized. It seems Roger had intervened to free Henry by guaranteeing payment of his debt, in return for which Henry and his wife, the same day, gave a three-year lease to Roger of all their bakehouses in the parish of St. Mary Aldermary. In July 1300 three Kentishmen complained that, having shipped cargoes (which included salt, but perhaps also grain, since one of the men was a baker) down the Thames, the bailiff of Queenhithe had forced them to dock at Queenhithe where they sold their goods, but then the bailiff arrested them and their boats at the request of Palmer and fellow cornmonger Roger atte Vyne, for reasons not specified; nothing more of the case being on record. In November of the same year Roger and other cornmongers made a further complaint to the mayor's court, against the bailiff of Queenhithe, that he was charging them unjust tolls before allowing them to have their corn measured; despite the sheriffs coming to back up their subordinate, they failed to provide documentation justifying the tolls described, so the mayor and aldermen specified what they could legitimately allow their officials to charge. In December of the same year Roger was back once more in the mayor's court, when he and his fellow cornmongers complained that the eight corn-measurers of Queenhithe did not measure grain honestly, and that the twenty-three porters working with them had raised their fees for porterage beyond the established amounts. It was probably this same Roger whose widow, Sibil, bequeathed (ca. 1306) to a niece named Dionysia, and her husband Roger de Coulinges a granary at Henley-on-Thames, and the right to purchase her mansion and shops in Bread Street at a preferential price; this was partly done in consideration of Dionisia's faithful service to Sibil's late husband. A bequest of rents in Bread Street went to Juliana and Cristina, daughters of Roger and Dionisia. It has been argued that this Roger de Coulinges also went by, or subsequently adopted, the name of Roger le Palmer [Ekwall, op. cit., URL:], and we might speculate that this Roger was an apprentice to or employee of his earlier namesake; either this or the takeover of business assets could explain the name-change. Unfortunately the situation is complicated by the existence, in 1319, of a Roger le Palmer senior and a Roger le Palmer junior, both taxed in Bread Street ward (the latter's assessment of 10s. being twice that of the former's); it is not easy to disentangle them. However, the will of one Roger le Palmer, drawn up in 1327 and proved in early 1331, provided for the souls of five individuals who appear to be himself, his late wife Dionisia, his surviving wife Beatrix, his benefactor Roger and Roger's wife Sibil; despite a bequest to his daughter (by Dionisia) Agnes, of a shop with solar and a brewhouse, there is no reference to Juliana or Cristina, though assignment of remainder to his surviving daughters may imply that others had predeceased him. These coincidences are the basis for an identification of Roger de Coulinges (whose surname could point to immigration from Cooling in Kent or Cowling in Suffolk) and Roger le Palmer, though it remains less certain whether senior or junior. The will also leaves two shops in Bread Street to Roger's servant Isabella for her good service. In 1310 Roger had complained to the mayor that when he was building a house near the church of St. Mildred Bread Street, a neighbour impeded him from installing its timbers against the wall dividing their properties; the neighbour, Thomas Gisors, argued that the wall belonged to him, but a view of the site led the authorities to a different conclusion. The name Roger le Palmer is associated with a number of posts in the city's governmental sphere; taken together, they have the look of one individual whose administrative aptitudes were gradually being recognized during the reign of Edward II. He had been chosen as one of the auditors of the city chamberlain's account in 1300 and was again in 1310; elected sheriff in 1309, in 1311 he was member of another city commission (to carry a 1,000 marks loan to the king in Scotland, via Berwick), was a murage warden 1311-12, and a parliamentary representative in 1318. This man, and the cornmonger who helped provision the coronation, is generally taken to be Roger le Palmer senior. A close supporter of the reform faction led by Hamo Chigwell, when several of Chigwell's aldermannic opponents were deposed in 1319/20, Roger was elected to replace one in Castle Baynard ward. He continued therein up to 1323, when he fell from the favour of Edward II, who deposed Chigwell from the mayoralty and placed Roger under a kind of house arrest. But Roger was translated to the aldermanry of Bread Street ward in 1324 and remained there to 1327. Roger's wealth, other than what came to him through his wife, was made partly from victualling the garrisons installed in Scotland, and in 1313 he supplied grain to the king's household. He owned granaries at Henley, bakehouses in London, and lands in Berkshire.

"Adam Wade"
He acted as mainpernor for baker Thomas de Wrotham (see below) in 1303. A resident of Vintry ward, in 1307 he was acting as an executor of his brother, John Wade, of the same ward, sheriff in 1286 and alderman of Vintry for much of the 1290s, a cornmonger who obtained some of his grain from the manor of Brembele, which he was leasing. In 1300 Adam Wade chandler acted as surety for John Wade when the latter's servant was found dead, of a homicide, in John's house in St. Hames Garlickhithe parish; John himself was not suspected, being abed at the time the deed was believed to have been committed, but his clerk was accused of the deed. In the same year we also hear that John's beadle (his aldermannic assistant), whose name was curiously (if not suspiciously) Henry le Chaundeler, was among a group of chandlers accused of selling tallow candles dearer after Christmas than before, contrary to the king's proclamation. John Wade owned a residential complex, known as Bousieshouse (doubtless named for a previous owner – perhaps the William Bousy still living nearby in 1300), in that parish, close to Queenhithe; it was built around a courtyard and incorporated warehouses. This he bequeathed to Adam. In St. Michael de Queenhithe parish John had owned granaries (also left to Adam), a brewhouse, and shops. John was among the wealthier citizens, to judge from his 1319 tax assessment of 60s., while Adam's (20s.) suggests that he was of a more middling economic rank, though still mercantile. Listed next to Adam was Alan Wade (6s.8d) who in 1300 was one of a group acquitted of an accusation of selling too dear -what commodity was not specified, although many of the group were cornmongers. Alan was also dealing in woad that year. Ironically, that very same year Adam Wade and Roger le Palmer were members of a group appointed to oversee the grain trade to ensure quality of goods and fair prices; it may have been as a result of their policing that, a few days later, a number of persons were disfranchised for forestalling grain. Adam's brother's death must have left him much wealthier. In his own will, ca.1310, Adam refers to Bousieshouse (left to his wife for life, and thereafter her brother), shops called "Helle" (a tavern?) owned in Fleet Street, others in Holborn Street and at Queenhithe, two granaries at Queenhithe with apartments (garrets) atop them – in one of which a sister may have been living – other granaries at Henley-on-Thames and a stone house at one end of the bridge there.

"Thomas de Wrotham"
In 1300 he was among a group of men (along with Alan Wade and John de Romeneye) acquitted of the charge of selling some commodity – probably grain – at too high a price. Our man was likely the baker of this name who was, in the 1292 subsidy, assessed a modest 6s.8d. in Cordwainer ward. His bakehouse in St. Clement's Lane at its corner with Candlewick Street, supervised by an employee oven-operator (furnator), is evidenced on 6 December 1303, when a client was arrested for possession of underweight bread; he defended that it was cooked by the operator, who then approved it by applying his employer's business seal to it, so that the court ordered Wrotham to be distrained to answer for profiting from fraud. On 13 December a second jury was assembled to consider the case against Wrotham (whose mainpernors included Adam Wade); after a postponement necessitated by rounding up one or more aldermen to attend the hearing, the jury declared that Thomas had not made the offending bread himself, and the only profit he made on it was was 4d. per quarter, equivalent to a fair charge for use of the bakehouse and its utensils; consequently he was acquitted. He was back in the mayor's court in 1306, after a fishmonger named Stephen le Bakere complained that Wrotham had maliciously sued him, as his bailiff, and had him locked up for over a month before a jury acquitted him. Wrotham defended that since the complainant had already been acquitted and Wrotham had been amerced in consequence, he should not be punished a second time for his offence. A John de Wrotham assessed in Bread Street Ward in 1319 was also a baker. A different John de Wrotham was assessed in Billingsgate ward that year, was one of the wardens of the cornmongers in 1328, and in 1334 had his ship and its corn cargo seized off the coast of Holland.

"John le Huthereve"
But he was of a family possibly associated (judging from the surname) with supervision of Queenhithe, two of whose members, Walter le Hethereve and Robert le Hethereve, were charged in 1310 with ensuring no victuals were shipped to Scotland from the port there. Walter had been bailiff of Queenhithe 1298/99. In 1322 Robert was again elected to the group responsible for controlling the use of Queenhithe, although the office of its bailiff was at that time held by someone else. It is just possible that the "reve" of Huthereve might derive from ripa, so that the surname originated as a locative, referring to residence on or near the riverbank at Queenhithe, but we would have to assume the "le" as a corruption of "delle".

"John de Romeneye"
In 1311 he is seen paying a large debt to the clerk of the king's stable for oats, although this appears not to be a purchase, but rather associated with a larger sum the city authorities had agreed to pay the king in support of the stable. This would suggest he was a purveyor of oats for the royal household. He was probably the man of this name who was one of the highest assessed tax-payers (40s.) in Billingsgate ward in 1292 – his house there being mentioned in 1305 – and who in 1310 was appointed as one of the keepers of Billingsgate port, responsible for ensuring no victuals were exported through it to Scotland. In 1300 he was one of the group of cornmongers accused of selling too dearly.

"Ralph Ratespray"
His earliest known appearance was in 1300, when he laid an accusation in the mayor's court that Robert Derman had tried to defraud the city of tolls by pretending that the merchandize of an outsider was his own. He was an executor of alderman Geoffrey de Nortone (died ca.1303), which may suggest a family connection (all other executors being family members). In 1308 he stood surety for two poulterers who farmed the murage tolls collected at Stratford (just east of the city) on poultry, bread, cheese, and timber. In March 1309 butcher Maurice atte Water acknowledged a debt of £8 7s. to him. He is probably the Ralph Spray who was in late 1311 a purveyor of meat and fish for the royal household.

"Nicholas Doreman"
Probably Devon's misreading of Dereman, who appears as a Portsoken ward tax-payer in 1319. His name is elsewhere rendered as Nicholas de Derman butcher. He is seen: in 1305, when acknowledging a debt to a pepperer; in 1308, acting as surety for the farmer of murage at Smithfield); in 1319, as an inspector of meat at the shambles (a purpose-built market structure, better known as the Stocks, in whose ground floor butchers and fishmongers rented selling spaces) – shortly after the appointment he and his fellow inspectors produced two putrid bullock carcasses that had been put up for sale at the shambles, and had the seller condemned to the pillory; in1325 and again ca.1328, when appointed one of the wardens of the butchers craft; in December 1328, as a buyer of beef and pigs to be part of a civic gift that had at some earlier date been made to Edward III (perhaps for his coronation?); and in 1331, when his name heads a list of butchers based at the Stocks market who presented the city authorities with a list of proposals for protectionist regulations for their trade, which were subsequently enacted. The will of Nicholas Dereman butcher (1335) bequeathed several properties in the parish of St. Botolph Without Aldgate (Portsoken ward), one of which was to be sold to finance a chantry in that church; he was predeceased by his wife and there is no sign of direct heirs in the will, although his son William had been admitted to citizenship in 1310 (Aldgate ward), and a will of 1368 mentions a daughter of Nicholas Derman, who had married a butcher and at earlier date held property in St. Botolph parish.

"John Fairhod"
He first appears on a long list of Londoners, compiled in 1299, claiming to be creditors of various Gascons who appear to have been acting as royal agents. In August 1300 he was member of an inquisition jury (which also included Adam Wade) that convicted a group of men as regular forestallers of coal and wood, leading to their disfranchisement. In 1311 he testified before the mayor that his apprentice, John de Browewood, had satisfactorily served out his ten-year term; the same year saw him selected as member of a group assigned to guard Castle Baynard ward. In the subsidy of 1319 his was the third highest assessment in Castle Baynard ward. Fairhod's will was proved in February 1320; left his residence in St. Andrew by the Wardrobe parish (Castle Baynard ward) to his third wife, Bona, and shops in the same parish to be sold to pay his debts.

"Thomas de Hales"
That in 1312 a Thomas de Hales junior, woodmonger, together with a goldsmith, acknowledged a debt of £6 to one of the aldermen, indicates we may have a disentangling problem here. The Thomas de Hales who was, by 1278, a resident of Castle Baynard ward, living close to the dock there, may be taken to represent the older of the pair. Between 1295 and 1311 a Thomas (without differentiator, which usually means the senior) is seen contracting several debts sizable enough (ranging from 60s. to £10 13s.4d.) to require recognizances, the largest being to the chaplain of Hampton; but we do not know what they were for. Two of Thomas' apprentices – Hervey Noteman and Thomas de Lodene – were admitted as citizens in February 1310, upon him testifying that they had satisfactorily completed their terms of service, and by June he had taken on a new apprentice for a fourteen-year term; at the same period we hear of a Geoffrey de Hales, woodmonger, also a resident of Castle Baynard ward, who has two apprentices. In the 1319 subsidy Thomas de Hales had the fifth highest assessment in Castle Baynard ward, and that he was listed immediately after John Fairhod might indicate they were near neighbours; like Fairhod, Hales was on the group of 1311 required to guard the ward. There is no indication in the 1319 subsidy that a second Thomas de Hales had a separate residence in the ward. However, a Hervey de Hales was living there, and Ekwall suggested this was Hervey Noteman, adopting his former master's name; Thomas de Lodene likewise had established a residence in the same ward by 1319. Neither Geoffrey nor Hervey is much in evidence thereafter. In 1320 Thomas was given credit, in the context of a municipal levy, for his contribution in 1316/17 towards a loan made to Edward II. His will was made in February 1327, and proved the following year. He left his son John and Thomas le Koo (T.H. junior re-named? son-in-law or grandson?) rents and tenements in St. Andrew parish (Castle Baynard); by this time it appears John had transferred his mercantile activities to Norwich, where the family may have had roots: Hales was a Norfolk village, and Lodene derives from Loddon, another Norfolk village; the two villages lie just two miles apart, in Norwich's south-eastern hinterland. Perhaps Hervey Noteman was in fact from Hales, and felt it better career-wise to divest himself of his 'nut-seller' heritage after graduation from apprenticeship presented him with more promising options.

"Thomas Wastel"
Little evidenced. His name appears on the same list of creditors of Gascons, compiled in 1299, as did Fairhod's. He was one of four woodmongers acquitted, in 1300, of a presentment for going outside of the city to forestall wood and charcoal (although a larger group of accused was convicted and disfranchised). In 1318 he stood surety for a king's clerk in regard to payment of a rent on a property, and the following year was a tax-payer in Langbourn ward, although his assessment was in the lower ranks; however, these references could pertain to another of the same name, who in 1320 was among a group of shoemakers presented for false work. A Simon Wastel, who died ca.1303, was a resident of St. Benedict on Thames parish (Castle Baynard ward), near the Wood Wharf, more commonly known as St. Paul's Wharf.

"Roger le White"
I find nothing on him under this name, but he is likely to be the man occasionally mentioned in the records as Roger le Blund, buscher (woodmonger), who appears as late as 1312, when Robert de Kent acknowledged a debt of 20 marks owed to Roger. A clue to his identity may perhaps be found in that in February 1301, during the initial term of mayor John le Blund (who was twice re-elected up to 1303, then continued as royal warden of the city until 1308), Roger had a sheriff arrest John de Nortone for a debt of 14 marks. The sheriff reported in December that Nortone had been imprisoned for some months but had still failed to satisfy Roger for the debt; consequently an extent was taken of his property, which concluded he owned nothing (except one small debt due him from Thomas de Hales), although his wife owned rents in Castle Baynard ward. In June 1303 John le Blund and Roger le Blund were witnesses together to a lease. John's will (ca.1313) indicates he had both a son and a brother named Roger, so the woodmonger may have been the brother. The Blund dynasty had been prominent in London in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries (although the surname was a common one and not all bearers were necessarily related), but was now on its last legs; although John's will mentions five sons, much of his property would end up in the hands of his mercer son-in-law Richer de Refham (mayor 1310/11).

"John de Talworth"
There appears to have been a family of this name active in the fuellers' trade. Like Wastel, he was one of the woodmongers acquitted, in 1300, of a presentment for going outside of the city to forestall wood and charcoal. In 1303 he was accused of impeding passage down the Walbrook by stacking firewood above its course in St. Martin Vintry parish (close to where the Walbrook reached Dowgate), and a visit of the authorities to the site found 575 faggots stacked there. In November 1309, Richard atte Lane de Chabeham acknowledged he had been serving as an apprentice to John de Taleword woodmonger for the last two years, out of an agreed term of five years; however, in December 1311, John de Taleworth testified that the same apprentice had completed a seven-year term, enabling him to be admitted as a citizen. John was apparently slack in registering his apprentices, for in October 1310 there had been a similar problem when William de Upshete became a citizen after completing his apprenticeship to Taleworth. In June 1312 a debt of £40 was acknowledged to William de Taleword woodmonger, but William may already have been deceased, for the debt was subsequently pursued by his widow Cecilia, now remarried to a Richard de Taleworth (possibly the shipwright who had completed his apprenticeship by 1310, when he became a citizen). In 1418 a John Talworth was appointed as one of a pair of wardens of the woodmongers' craft, and was probably the same John de Taleworth woodmonger who in January 1392, having recently married Isabella, the young daughter of John Wilton, acknowledged receipt of her inheritance; conceivably a descendant of the earlier John de Talworth.

"John le Discher"
The occupation (discarius) is a sub-category of the turners, who made wooden vessels for eating and drinking. John le Dissher is not much in evidence, but is glimpsed in 1304 as juror of an inquisition pronouncing on a violent disturbance of the peace by tailors and leather-workers. In the 1319 subsidy he was taxed in Cripplegate ward; listed after him was John le Cuppere, a related occupation probably involving the making of wooden cups, rather than metal mazers (an occupation also present in the ward). This ward seems to have been a focus for such artisans, the dishers particularly evidenced in Wood Street, the spine of Cripplegate. A coroner's inquest of 1300 investigated a fatal wounding that took place inside the stall of John le Disshere (who was not implicated), located across from Goldsmith's Row, which ran along Cheapside opposite the corner of Wood Street; this would suggest that John's stall – large enough to have interior space – was in a choice location, and that he may have been one of the more conspicuous members of his craft.

"Richard Poterel"
The family seems to have been based in Castle Baynard ward, where resided in 1322 Alice Poterel, thought to be the widow of Richard Poterel senior, who had died just recently; Richard senior had served as city chamberlain (1304-10) and may have been a cornmonger according to Ekwall. In 1300 a group of merchants accused of selling too dearly included Richard Poterel son of Richard Poterel, so Richard junior may have been that son, despite Richard senior's will mentioning only a son John. In 1279 a Robert Poterel had been one of the buyers of the king's household.

"Peter de Sparham"
In 1300/01 he was partnering with fellow mercer Richer de Refham in renting one of the compartments within the Broad Seld in Cheapside, for storage of their wares. In June 1304 he and alderman Nicholas Pycot received a recognizance of a debt of £100 from city lawyer and businessman Robert de Kelsey, and Peter alone a debt recognizance of 5 marks from the wife of John Fitz Peter. Peter died in or not long before 1312, when his executor supported Peter's apprentice's admission to citizenship; that the executor was priest of the church of St. Stephen's in Coleman Street ward likely points towards Peter's parish of residence, and his former apprentice lived in the same ward.

"Roger Frowyk"
The London dynasty was founded by Middlesex landholder Thomas Frowyk who, around the mid-thirteenth century, married into the prominent London mercantile family of Adrian; the Frowyk family managed to last unusually long in the male line for an urban dynasty [see Sylvia Thrupp, The Merchant Class of Medieval London, University of Michigan Press, 1948, pp.342-44]. Its longevity was thanks to the founder's son Henry Frowyk, either Roger's older brother or (perhaps more probably) his father, for Roger's own will mentions no children. Henry Frowyk – one of whose sons rose to knightly status in Middlesex – was a pepperer and an alderman (1272-86), but Roger chose goldsmithing as his trade, as did some other members of the family in that period (one of them, Thomas Frowyk, was commissioned to make a crown for Edward I's new queen, Margaret, in 1303 but then was given the run-around when he tried to collect payment). Roger's earliest known employment by the Crown came in 1305. According to Williams [op.cit., p.108], for a good stretch during Edward II's reign Roger was making as much as £450 a year just from his sales to the royal household. In the 1319 subsidy he was taxed in Tower ward, having the second highest assessment (£4); his will identifies his home there as in the parish of St. Olave. It was, however, Langbourn ward of which he was alderman (1312-24). He held some land just outside London, at West Ham (Essex), probably by right of his wife Idonia. Roger died in 1328, leaving most of his properties to Idonia for life, although curiously he required their home to be sold to pay for pious legacies. No other legatees of that surname are mentioned, perhaps because all males of the family were prospering in their own right. There were still prosperous Frowyks in London at the close of the fifteenth century.

"John Bottesham"
Possibly the John Botekisham who, with John Charneye, in 1386 obtained from the mayor and community a life grant of the gaol and gate of Ludgate, free of rent but under the condition of keeping the gaol; in 1391 John Botlesham is referred to as former keeper of Ludgate prison, his performance in that post having resulted in him being sued. It is hard, however, to imagine this as a sideline of a goldsmith. In 1389 we hear of a John Botelesham who was involved in a legal dispute in a London court with goldsmith John Payn and his wife, but this Botelsham appears to be a Bury St. Edmunds man. Our man is more likely to be the John Botesham who, as a common councillor in 1390, was one of the city representatives chosen to attend the parliament to be held that November.

John was the first king who began to distribute liveries regularly to members of his household, and who seems to have been interested in jewels, partly because of protective properties attributed to them by lore. Expenditure on jewellery increased during his reign, as supplies of silver and gold increased in Europe, and it became lavish under his son, although his only known sources of gemstones were Italian and French merchants. By the time of Edward I expenditure on jewellery and plate was a family tradition and there was a certain competitiveness both within the royal family and with other aristocratic houses. [David Hinton, Gold and Gilt, Pots and Pins: Possessions and People in Medieval Britain, Oxford University Press, 2005, pp.200-03, 221-223.] For Richard II's taste for silver and gold plate and expensive jewellery, and his patronage of goldsmiths, see Jenny Stratford, Richard II and the English Royal Treasure, Woodbridge: Boydell Press, 2012.

"Christopher Tildesley"
First mentioned in 1384 when, possibly an immigrant from Lancashire, he was apprenticed to London goldsmith John Grenefeld; he became a member of the goldsmiths' company after a ten-year apprenticeship, and subsequently obtained citizenship. By 1402 he had a couple of apprentices of his own and his business was doing sufficiently well that he was chosen to be a warden of the company, although he is not subsequently seen playing any major part in its affairs, nor in civic administration. This was probably because he was busy developing a relationship with the royal household. He found regular employment there and in 1398 was officially attached to it as king's goldsmith (which paid a daily wage of 12d.), and later in the year was rewarded with a three-year grant of the office of customs collector in London; he accompanied King Richard on his expedition to Ireland the following year, doubtless in anticipation of receiving while abroad business from the king, perhaps to create new pieces, repair old ones, or appraise valuables the king acquired in Ireland. Despite that, Richard failed to pay Tildesley for much of his work, so that well over £2,000 was owing him by the time Henry IV came to the throne. The close association with Richard did not prejudice his career, and Henry continued to make use of his services, and even paid the bulk of the debt his predecessor owed. Tildesley's willingness to make loans to the king (£800 in 1401, upon security of some of the king's plate and jewels) must have helped smooth the transition between regimes. In 1402 he was confirmed in his post as king's goldsmith and worked on making for Henry (who was preparing for marriage to Joan of Navarre) three gold collars and a new crown for his bascinet; the lavish and expensive collar described above may also have been produced for the wedding [Jessica Lutkin, "Tildesley, Christopher (fl. 1384–1414)", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2012,, last accessed 4 Feb 2014], which took place in 1403 in Winchester Cathedral. His success enabled him to buy property in Cheap ward and may have helped a possible brother Thomas Tildesley, who was appointed one of the king's serjeants-in-law 1402-1409. Despite his valued work, Christopher Tildesley had perhaps over-extended himself; he had lost his post by April 1411 and was being harassed by creditors in the following year, with some of what he was owed by the Crown still unpaid, despite him appointing an attorney to pursue the debt. When London's sheriffs were ordered to arrest him, to answer a tailor on a plea of debt of £351, they reported they could not find him in the city. In 1414 an extent was taken of his real estate to see if his creditors could be satisfied, but its worth was estimated at only £8, and Christopher himself had disappeared, never to be heard of again.

"John Hende"
A London draper or clothier, in 1389 he received £22 for two cloths – one red, one violet – purchased for the king as gifts to departing dignitaries. In 1387 he was acting as attorney for one merchant of Lucca to sue another one for debt. When in 1401 Henry IV had to raise loans for the defence of the realm, Hende contributed the huge sum of £2,000 – an amount higher than those negotiated with the city itself, the wealthy Richard Whittington, or the Bishop of Bath and Wells. Chosen as alderman for Candlewick ward in 1379, again 1381 (when subsequently elected sheriff), and from 1384-91, he was elected mayor in 1391 and again in 1404, despite not being an alderman on the latter occasion, but was soon after made alderman for Walbrook ward, continuing therein to 1409. In 1382 there is mention of his house in St. Nicholas Lane, off Candlewick Street. He is credited with funding the rebuilding of the church of St. Swithin. Since the items pledged in 1408 were valued at the £465 10s. 7d. paid to John Hende, it appears he made a tidy profit on the loan, unless this was somehow covered off by Hende's provision in April of woollen cloth for making garters (badges for the Knights of the Garter) for St. George's day festivities; Tout has noted that entries in the accounts are often not as straightforward as they appear. In July 1426 Hende's executors were paid the balance owing on a loan of 500 marks and they delivered various pieces of jewellery to the Exchequer to be put back in the Treasury.

"Henry Barton"
Henry Barton was a skinner who served as alderman for Farringdon Without ward 1406-12, then transferred to Cornhill ward in 1412, where alderman to his death in 1435; sheriff 1405-06, and twice elected mayor (1416, 1428). His brother Ralph, also a skinner, subsequently was alderman in Farringdon (1416-36). Their family background lay in Buckinghamshire, where Henry still held land, as well as in Hertforshire (two manors) and Norfolk. He also held several London properties at his death; some, including a tavern in Wood Street, the Red Lion. he wished to be turned into almshouses. He belonged to a fraternity of Corpus Christi (probably based in the church of St. John upon Walbrook, but associated with the skinners' gild), to which he left bequests and responsibilities, such as the foundation of the almshouses. A man very conscious of his status, he requested burial in a chapel in St. Paul's and showed much concern that his obit there be attended by the mayor and aldermen, providing money for their refreshment with bread, six gallons of wine, and a thirty-gallon barrel of beer. A chantry was to be maintained for him in the Guildhall chapel. His fairly extensive will includes references to various pieces of silver plate, some marked with his arms, of which the cups were to be used to serve wine to the Corporation members attending his obit, and to members of the skinner's gild when they held their meetings. We also hear of his black velvet suit decorated with orfrays, some of gold cloth some of featherwork, and a red velvet jacket. Other items suggest he had a chapel in his home, which appears to have been, a century earlier, the house of Thomas Romeyn (see below) in St. Mary Aldermary parish. Shops and tenements bequeathed to his wife Johanna, as dower, had formerly belonged to Drew Barantyn. Twenty-four poor resident skinners were to receive 6s.8d. each (in return for prayers), each skinner's apprentice a shilling, and other paupers of London or his Hertfordshire estates were to be given hooded gowns of best Welsh grey cloth and linen under-vests. He left no children, a nephew inheriting his land in Barton, Buckinghamshire.

"William Tristour"
A saddler, he was nominated for, but not elected as, alderman of Farringdon Within ward in 1420. The few occasions when documented tend simply to show his responsible citizenship, as well as solidarity with his fellow saddlers. He was one of the sureties of John Cokayn, chief baron of the Exchequer, in 1401, when the underage daughters of former mayor Nicholas Exton were given over to Cokayn's guardianship, and again in 1403 in regard to the administration of the children's estate.. In 1402 he and Henry Barton stood surety for skinner William Pountfreyt (brother of a saddler), appointed guardian of the daughter of William Bowyer, tailor. Once more he is seen in a similar context, in 1414, as one of the executors of Henry Hechendene saddler, accepting guardianship of Henry's orphaned son and the money the boy had inherited from his late mother. Henry's will (made 1425, proved 1427) shows no sign of children of his own, nor wife, and his property in the parish of All Hallows Gracechurch was left to the officials and parishioners to support the church and a chantry; that may have been his parish of residence, though it was not in Farringdon.

"Thomas Chalton"
The son of a Dunstaple man, Thomas pursued the occupation of mercer and was chosen as a warden of his company in 1440 and 1445. He was alderman of Bishopgate ward 1433-52, sheriff 1433-34, and mayor 1449-50. His will was drawn up in December 1451 and proved a few months later. He had funded the creation of a chapel within the church of St. Alban Wood Street and in his will of 1467 mercer John Andrewe bequeathed that church properties in three parishes, which Chalton had bequeathed him for the purpose of maintaining a chantry in that chapel, to celebrate an annual obit of Thomas and his wife Alice.

"Thomas Stanes"
A draper, he makes a fleeting appearance in the Letter-Books in 1419, alongside three grocers, acting as sureties for a deceased vintner's son, who proposed to expend his monetary inheritance on becoming a monk. He may perhaps be the Thomas Smyth, called Stanes, who became a citizen in 1399 through apprenticeship to a timbermonger but argued that he had been dealing in wine and, with this confirmed by the wardens of the vintners company, was admitted in that trade.

"silver chain"
It was common to attach a seal to a chain, for carrying it about and reducing the risk of it being misplaced.

"William Kele, Simon de Kele"
There seems to have been a family of goldsmiths of the name around this period, Thomas de Keles being another. Interestingly, none of them appears in either the 1292 or 1319 subsidy lists (which are, however, incomplete), although in 1319 there is in Aldersgate (St. Botulph parish) a Salerna de Kele, widow of Henry de Kele who was a seal-engraver – probably the same man recorded in 1277 as owning part of a house in Aldersgate. William de Keles acknowledged a debt of 48s. to alderman Adam de Foleham in 1299, and it was duly repaid, while Simon was the recipient of a debt recognizance (40s.) in 1307. Otherwise they are inconspicuous.

"Nicholas de Twyford"
Between 1378 and 1384 this goldsmith was paid over £70 for silver gilt cups sold to the king as gifts for visiting envoys. He is, however, best known for being used by the faction of John Northampton to challenge that of Nicholas Brembre, being the former's mayoral candidate in the election of 1384, which the incumbent Brembre hijacked. In the turbulent times, he was intermittently alderman for much of the period between 1375 and his death in 1390, but underwent an unusual number of transfers: initially in Coleman ward, then in turn to Farringdon, Lime Street, back to Coleman Street, and finally Aldersgate; he served as sheriff 1377-78, and mayor 1388-89. Survived by wife Margery, but predeceased by his children, he left his estates in Buckinghamshire and Middlesex, which had brought him a knighthood in 1381, to more distant kin. His wife was to keep their centrally located residence in St. John Zachary parish for her lifetime. The officials of that church and of the goldsmiths' gild were to have rents from a tavern, the Crane, to support obits for himself, his wife, and their children.

"John Bernes"
A mercer named John de Bernes, or Biernes, was an alderman from 1360 to his death in 1375 and mayor 1370-72, but seems only to have sired a daughter. Our man is more likely the member of a jury, drawn from the West Cheap neighbourhood (where the goldsmiths were based), in 1382, to sit on a felony trial of two thieves targeting goldsmiths' shops; however, this might have been the skinner of the name who died ca.1384 (also leaving only daughters). We return to more certain ground with the John Biernes identified in 1416 as one of the wardens of the goldsmiths' gild, acting on the terms of the will of goldsmith Nicholas Farndon (1361) to sell one of his former properties; for reasons unclear, Biernes persistently refused to endorse the transaction, when his fellow wardens tried to have the deed of sale registered by the husting court. In 1427 Biernes was a surety for one son of a deceased goldsmith, who was made trustee of the inheritance of a younger brother.

"Adam de Thorp"
A goldsmith named Stephen de Thorpe is evidenced in 1391 as one of a group of arbitrators in a land dispute between to fellow goldsmiths; he had been a Farringdon ward sub-collector of the poll tax of 1379, and he and his wife and daughter are mentioned in a will of 1424 as all being deceased. Of Adam I find nothing, but we cannot conclude the name is a clerical error.

"John Organ"
A mercer, he served as sheriff 1385-86; after some stints as common councillor in the late 1360s and early 1370s, he was elected to a number of annual terms as alderman: of Broad Street ward, in 1376, 1378 and 1380, Coleman Street ward in 1382 and 1384, then Langbourn ward for three years (1385-88). In 1382 he successfully prosecuted an Essex man for having been a member of an armed group threatening John and his property during the Peasant's Revolt; John stated that he had fled his home in fear, carrying with him cloths of gold and velvet, silk baudekins, linen cloths, and other merceries worth £200, which he buried in the parish of St. Olave, in the Old Jewry neighbourhood, but there they decayed, to his loss of £500 – exaggerated (for when John later was obliged to swear his accusation was genuine, he excepted the estimation of damages), but perhaps suggestive of the profit John might hope to make on goods of that value; he later revised his losses to £40. It is conceivable that the cleric William Organ who died ca.1396 was John's son, for he desired burial in the church of St. Olave; his inheritance from his late father he wished to be divided: one-third to his sister, a nun, one-third split between a brother and a sister, and the final third put to pious uses. He left to a second brother a brewery-tavern, the Hart's Horn, on Cornhill.

"John Staunton"
A prosperous brewer of this name was active in the early fifteenth century, but seems unlikely to have been the cloth-dealer; his will of 1418 (not proved until 1443) refers to a son John. Wealthy grocer and alderman William Staundon, twice married, who died 1410, might be another candidate as father (John being the name of William's own father), though his will mentions only a daughter.

"Adam de Basinges"
The Basing family, likely with roots not far from London, in Basingstoke, (although Basing in Hampshire is another possibility), had obtained a foothold within the London patriciate by mid-twelfth century. Adam's father was a landowner of knightly status; his grandfather may also have been a knight, or perhaps the Salomon de Basing who was mayor in 1217. Looking to commerce for his main livelihood, however, Adam became involved in the Irish trade in grain and hides, but owed his wealth to his role as a draper and royal supplier of luxury fabrics and other expensive goods to the king. Williams [op.cit., p.73] has calculated that between 1238 and 1260 "his annual sales to the Household averaged £79", peaking in the late '40s and early '50s – the same period when he served a shrievalty (1243-44) became a city alderman (1247-60, Cheap ward), was elected mayor (1251), made loans to and went on missions for the king, was rewarded with a tax exemption (1253), and purchased in 1247 a large block of real estate (including 6 shops) in Aldermanbury, comprising a soke having the advowson of three parish churches; there he built himself a new mansion. In that neighbourhood the topographical names of Bassishaw ward, Basing Lane, and Basinghall Street echo either the family or earlier settlers from Basingstoke who established a soke within the nascent city. By 1244 the royal debt to him was so large that he was assigned the entire wool production of the Bishopric of Winchester from which to recoup what he was owed. Adam married into the established and prominent fitz-Alulf family, and through his mother-in-law (of the equally important Viel family) acquired a warehouse in Cheap. He and his wife Desiderata founded a civic dynasty which would remain important in the political and economic life of the city down into the early fourteenth century. Adam was dead by 1262.

A luxury cloth (imported), in which gold thread was interwoven with silk, and sometimes embroidered. This type of cloth was often used for altar covers.

Sometimes rendered as chesable, it was a garment worn like a cape by priests during services; they could be made from various cloths, such as velvet or damask, and were often embroidered with thread of gold or other colours. It originated as a variant of a cope.

A royal manor, to which Henry III was particularly partial, located just south of the Thames in the area of present-day Lambeth.

A long, semi-circular mantle or cape, usually of silk, that could be worn by any clergyman, status being indicated by the degree of decoration.

A kind of tunic, worn by bishops below the chasuble, or by deacons in place of chasuble.

The standard vestment of an officiating clergyman.

"Rose de Bureford"
She was the wife of John de Burford, a recent immigrant to London from Oxfordshire who established himself through his marriage and through taking up the occupation of pepperer, in which he is seen in 1297 supplying £222 worth of spices to the Wardrobe. He paid for the spices he imported by exporting wool, likely sourced from his native Oxfordshire as well as from counties further west. John served as sheriff 1303-04, was repeatedly appointed one of the city's wardens at the Boston fair, and would later become alderman of Vintry ward (1321-22). In 1292, however, he had been taxed in Cordwainer ward, with the second highest assessment (60s.) in the ward, and in 1316 was still living in that ward, in Soper Lane, a focal neighbourhood for pepperers (forerunners of the grocers), which ran off Cheapside and so was close to the major trading areas of the city. The highest assessment (£5) in Cordwainer ward belonged to another pepperer, listed next to John, Thomas Romeyn, who may therefore have been his neighbour. Or it might be more meaningful to state it as John being Thomas' neighbour, for Thomas was also Rose's father, by his wife Juliana Hauteyn, who belonged to one of the city's patriciate families, again pepperers and mercers. The surname Romeyn suggests an Italian heritage (though Roman was a generic term for Italian, and one John le Romeyn was known to come from Lucca); Thomas had an Italian neighbour in 1308, pepperer John Vanne, and had known business associations with Italian family companies, the Beraudi and the Ballardi (bankers to Edward I and Edward II); Vanne was the London agent of the latter and his house next to Romeyn's may have been the London headquarters of the Ballardi [Suzanne Dempsey, "The Italian Community in London during the Reign of Edward II", The London Journal, vol.18 (1993), p.20]. John de Burford was likewise associated with the Ballardi of Lucca, through the Boston fair. The pepperers and spicers, because of growing English demand for the paramedical and culinary commodities they imported, and (in the case of Italians) their advanced knowledge of the applications of such items, were quickly adopted into the city's mercantile class and, indeed, became something of an elite within it. Thomas was a supplier to the Wardrobe and John's business there may have benefited through the relationship; indeed, after Thomas' death in late 1312, John's trade seems to have increased (judging from the number of debt recognizances made to him), which might indicate he was perceived as the successor to Thomas' business. When Edward II had need in 1314 to assemble a small group of the leading merchants of his realm, John de Burford was one of the seven men chosen. Thomas Romeyn had been alderman of Cordwainer ward from 1294 up to his death, and mayor 1309-10; his will shows he still held a rent in Soper Lane, although his own residence at this time was in the parish of St. Mary Aldermary, where he held various rents that he bequeathed to Rose and John, probably because a sum from the rents had to be paid annually towards maintenance of Thomas' chantry in the parish church. Cordwainer ward had a large number of residents engaged in the clothing trade in 1292: alongside the shoemakers and hosiers who gave their name to the ward (and the many pepperers and several mercers) there can be identified a hatter, glover, and two embroiderers (one listed next to Romeyn); there were also Lombard merchants living in the ward, and Soper Lane seems to have been one of the neighbourhoods attracting Italians generally, though this is not necessarily significant. Despite her wealthy family background, it seems doubtful that, at this period in history, Rose would have possessed such a valuable item of clothing through purchase, and we may suspect that Rose herself undertook the embroidery of the cope, though whether she made regular money through such an occupation cannot be said. Given the background of her family – we may note that Lucca and Pisa were particularly known for their elaborately embroidered cloths – and its means to purchase fine materials, it is not implausible that Rose may have become an accomplished embroideress, pursuing it as a refined art rather than to earn a living; yet nor is it impossible she was doing it partly to generate income for her household, as there may not yet have been in London an embroiderer's gild in existence to restrict such enterprise. John de Burford died in 1322, perhaps unexpectedly and prematurely, for he had just negotiated purchases from the latest fleet to arrive from Italy with spice cargoes. Rose did not follow him to the grave until 1329, having retired, in declining health, to quieter surroundings just south of London in her widow's chamber at the manor of Charlton; curiously, Charlton was not far from the palace Edward II had acquired at Eltham. Yet she had apparently kept up her husband's business for several years after his death, as suggested by the bequest to her (still underage) son James of the remainder of the term of an apprentice. Rose owned properties in several parishes, some of which were to be sold to support chantries for twenty years in a new chapel she had paid for in the church of St. Thomas the Apostle (Cordwainer ward), and to pay for other pious and charitable works for the good of her soul and that of her late husband. She also held three manors (one by lease) from which she left James "stock, live and dead" [Reginald Sharpe, Calendar of Wills proved and enrolled in the Court of Husting, London, London, 1889, vol.1, p.352]; one (possibly two) of the manors is identifiable as being also in Kent, close to the Thames, and the third in Surrey. Some of these she had inherited from her father who, Williams [op.cit., p.143] argues "at the end of his life was assuming an extremely aristocratic posture." With husband dead and two of her children underage, Rose chose as her principal executor the aldermannic draper John Pultney, a fellow landholder in Kent, who would be elected mayor the following year; associated with him as executors were Rose's son-in-law Thomas de Betoyne (or Bethune, merchant and younger son in a family of pepperers, whose father and brother – though not Thomas – were prominent in city government), and two clerics. Her son James, declared of age in 1342, had no interest in a career in the city; he lived on his estates and acquired the status of a knight, but in 1345 is seen in possible financial difficulties, granting away his London rents and having to mortgage his Sussex and Surrey estates to assure the grant.

"John de Sellyng"
The surname probably derives from a village in Kent. Although he held no civic office, Sellyng appears to have been on the peripheries of officialdom, occasionally in attendance at Guildhall meetings, chosen as one of London's representatives to the parliament held at Lincoln in 1312, and serving in 1322 on a committee to audit the accounts of men who had received city money with which to obtain a new royal charter and confirmation of the old ones. In 1303 he, together with alderman-fishmonger Hugh Pourt, and Thomas de Querle clerk acknowledged receipt of a loan of 80 marks from Juliana Delisle, a Westminster widow. In 1307 three men (two of them potters) recognized a debt to Sellyng, in his capacity of apothecary, of 66s.8d. In 1309 it was Sellyng's turn again, acknowledging the sizable debt of £80 66s.8d. to Adam de Skeltone, which, however, Sellyng was able to repay. More revealing is his acknowledgement, in November 1303, of having received from John le Benere a certain casket, sealed with the seals of Peter de Paris, the queen's apothecary, and of the community of Yarmouth, which had been put into Benere's keeping (as a neutral party) as security for payment by the community of Yarmouth of a debt of 60 marks. The delivery of the casket to Sellyng, who was acting in this as Peter's attorney, indicated that the debt had not been paid by the due date. In 1312 John, son of John Datchet, butcher acknowledged a debt of £40 to Sellyng. In 1322 John assigned to his son Robert (and had the related documents enrolled in civic records) his life interest in a shop in Cheapside (which was to revert to Henry le Waleys), rents from a property in the parish of St. Nicholas Shambles, and an interest (probably a reversion), under the will (ca.1311) of Alditha widow of John Datchet, mother of John's wife Johanna, in a tenement in the same parish; but four years later Robert turned the shop back over to his father, perhaps having failed to establish himself in business. A man of this name was living in 1343, but probably a plague victim, for in September 1349 a tailor and his wife acknowledged receiving from the executor of John's executor a sum of money to be held in trust for John's daughters, of whom the couple were the 'closest friends'. However, since the daughters were evidently underage, and this John was referred to as a draper, this was likely a different man from the apothecary – perhaps another son. A spicer by the name of Peter de Sellynge is heard of in 1340.

"John Adam"
In 1347 apothecary Nicholas Guillim leased to a colleague, an Italian from Lucca, a shop in the parish of St. Benet Sherehog (Cordwainer ward), under the same conditions (not specified) that it had been previously leased by apothecary John Adami. This rendering of the surname may suggest that he too had an Italian background. In June 1350 John Adam spicer was fined by the city because his servant had, at his instructions, sold a gallon of wine at an illegally high price. The will of apothecary John Adami de Montchesney (muddying waters by suggesting a Norman heritage, but possibly a corruption of Cascina or Monte Cassino?) was drawn up in 1358, in his house near the church of St. Stephen Walbrook, and proved later that year. He left his wife whatever was due her by English custom, her widow's chamber with clothing and jewellery, and his brother £100. He wished his nephew Jaket to be rewarded for long years of faithful service to him, and he released his apprentices from the remainder of their terms of service. His heirs were a daughter and two sons (but no sign he owned any property to leave them, other than his residence), and his trustees for pursuing his debts were merchants of Lucca. In 1374 there is reference to the apothecary's son, deceased, who went by the name of John Hachesham.

A gum used as an ingredient in creams applied to the skin.

"white powder"
For external application, usually within a paste, for the purpose of lightening the complexion or disguising blemishes.

Possibly a cannabis derivative, mixed with opiates or other drugs (depending on the purpose of the preparation) into a confection known as madjoon.

"caffetin sugar"
A refined sugar.

A paste or syrup composed of medical powders and other ingredients, with sweeteners added to disguise the taste, for oral consumption.

"John Salman"
A salter of this name is evidenced in 1376, when acting as a surety, and a brewer of the name in 1421. The apothecary proves elusive, unless it may be the burgess of Bruges of that name who, in 1382, was being sued by William Walworth for a debt of £100; as this John was an absentee defendant, he would appear not be have been a resident of the city at this time.

"John Waddesworth"
A pepperer named William de Waddesworth is a minor legatee in a will of 1381.

"Roger Elys"
He may be a case of an apprentice marrying the daughter and taking the name of his master, for his wife Alice's brother was Martin Elys, a cleric, and one of their sisters was also married to a wax-chandler. Alice must have died ca.1394, and Roger remarried. In 1376 he was one of the pair of wax-chandlers chosen to represent his craft on the common council. He was subsequently elected for terms as alderman (in a period when election was annnual) of Aldersgate ward in 1377, 1379, 1381, 1384-87, 1393-96. In 1390 a complaint was made that a new building he had erected on the corner of Bread Street encroached on Watling Street, but an inquisition decided otherwise. He made his will in August 1396 and it was proved in the husting court the following January; he desired burial in the church of St. Leonard in FasterLane (Aldersgate ward), which was presumably his home parish, but he owned property in at least three additional parishes. His wife Johanna was to have this for life, and afterwards it was to be sold for pious and charitable uses, for the good of his soul, that of his first wife, and that of Martin Elys. There is no sign of children. One of his executors was his brother-in-law Thomas Exton, a goldsmith, who had married another of Alice's sisters.

"John Wyddemer"
A John Wydmere was appointed one of the sub-collectors of the 1379 poll tax in Vintry ward and in 1384 representing the same ward on the common council. In 1390 he sat on the inquisition to determine if wax-chandler Roger Elys had made an encroachment (see above), which at least made him a resident of the parish of All Hallows Bread Street. However, it seems more likely this individual was the joiner of the name who, for reasons of old age, was exempted from jury service in 1400.

"Thomas Wryght"
The sole reference to him that I have found is interesting, for it provides an indirect link to Gilbert Prince. In 1421 the sum of £4 which he and another man, tenants of certain tenements in the parishes of St. Giles without Cripplegate (Prince's parish) and St. Dionisius Fenchurch, had deposited with the city chamberlain, in trust for Reginald son of John Prince (son of Gilbert?) was delivered to Reginald's mother Agnes, along with guardianship of the boy and the said tenements.

Such as the royal barge, decorated inside and out with the arms of king and queen in 1447, by a London painter, while in 1415 William Soper of Southampton, as part of his commission to rebuild one of Henry V;s ships, the Holigost, had arranged for the carving of a swan and an antelope (presumably as figureheads) and for a painter to decorate the vessel with royal symbols (swans, antelopes), arms, and motto.

"John Orchard"
Perhaps the common councillor of that name in 1381, although he was representing the fletchers' gild. It was likely the same man who was in 1387 member of an inquisition jury drawn from St. Mildred Poultry parish to ascertain the correct age of an orphan.

A John Lyndeseye was in 1378 the co-lessee of a stable and warehouse adjacent to Ludgate, which had been vandalized; but this appears to have been a chapman-haberdasher, who also (1373) leased from the city a stall beside the church of St. Martin Ludgate; there was also a cutler of the name living at this period, not to mention the prior of a local hospital.

"Gilbert Prince"
Despite entering the king's employ, he participated in civic life to some degree, contributing 5 marks towards a citizens' loan to the city in 1378, and summoned in 1384 and 1386 to participate on the common council, as one of the representatives of Cripplegate ward.

"cultured tastes"
Besides being a patron of the arts, he liked dramatic performances and reading, possessing a number of romances and other books. He had an eye for quality in all such works. Henry V too was a reader, but the difference between him and Richard is illustrated by the commissioning of London scrivener John Robard, in 1421, to copy twelve books on hunting for Henry's chamber.

"fairly wealthy"
There were charitable bequests to the parish church, St. Paul's Cathedral, all the friaries, the inmates of hospitals, London's anchorites, the prisoners of Ludgate and Newgate, and gratitude bequests to his own servants. To his wife Elizabeth he left a hundred pounds and all utensils belonging to his hall, chamber, pantry, buttery, and kitchen, all his jewellery of gold, silver or other metals, an embroidered piece of worsted that appears to have been a wall-hanging in his hall, and an interest in several tenements; although he requested burial beside his late wife Isolda in his parish church of St. Giles Cripplegate (a suburban parish), where a chantry was to be maintained, and to which he bequeathed a missal, chalice, and vestments. Isolda appears to have been the mother of his three probably underage children: two boys and a girl, to each of whom he bequeathed a girdle decorated with silver. In 1397 his executors, John Hugyn "fynour" (a refiner of precious metals) and John Wolfey carpenter, both of the same parish as Gilbert, turned over to the city chamberlain £100 to hold in trust for Gilbert's son Robert.

"artist is unknown"
It has been proposed that André Beauneveu, a painter of the court of the king of France and later that of the Duc de Berri, was the artist, and this remains the attribution in Westminster Abbey documentation. However, the theory was put forward at a time when it was trendy to try to identify anonymous works with him, and was on purely stylistic grounds. There is no historical evidence he was ever at Richard II's court, and this attribution no longer has much support. The claim of Gilbert Prince has been disdained because it is assumed he was English; but the surname does not have an English ring, and it is not inconceivable he may have received, directly or indirectly, some continental training.

"Henry Yevele"
His surname suggests family roots in Derbyshire, where he would have been born ca.1320, but London summoned men of talent or ambition and it would be there that his career focused. Taking out citizenship at London in 1353, he worked his way up to becoming an in-demand craftsman, known to have engaged in a number of architectural projects for the Crown, for the city of London, and in other English towns (e.g he built a new stone bridge for Chelmsford in the early 1370s that would last for four centuries). Already by 1356 his ability was sufficiently recognized locally that he was a member of a committee of masons advising the mayor and aldermen about regulating the craft, and the following year he obtained a contract to remodel the buildings at the royal manor of Kennington. After completing that job he was appointed as a supervisor of works at the Tower and the palace at Westminster; he would go on to work at the abbey there and at Canterbury Cathedral, as well as on royal castles,such as those at Queenborough and Rochester; it may have been his work at the cathedral that prompted Canterbury city authorities to engage him on the renovation of elements of the city defences. He was a mason in the service of the Black Prince in 1359 (and is believed, on stylistic grounds, to have designed the prince's chantry and tomb in Canterbury cathedral), King's Master Mason from 1360 until his death in 1400, master mason to Westminster Abbey from about 1372, and warden of London Bridge for much of the period 1365-95. He also did work for John of Gaunt, including designing his tomb, as well as funerary monuments of royalty and leading churchmen. It has been said of him that "he possessed a style as markedly individual and recognizable as that of any Renaissance architect." [John Harvey, "Henry Yevele, architect, and his works in Kent," Archaeologia Cantiana, vol.56 (1943), p.48.]

It was perhaps pressure of work that led him to seek, and obtain in 1383, permission from the city council to give up his post as a long-serving warden of London Bridge, although in the following year he accepted the responsibilities of a position on the common council, as one of the representatives of Bridge ward, and in 1394 he is once more found in the warden's post, so his retirement was evidently temporary. It was a good appointment for someone of that occupation to have a responsibility for the fabric of the bridge (although wardens generally were not chosen on that basis), and he was also involved in the rebuilding of the Thames bridge at Rochester in the 1390s. He died in 1400, a moderately wealthy man, survived by his second wife Katherine, whom he had married before 1390, but apparently childless – Katherine's son by her former husband, John Hadde, not having survived infancy. His residence was in the parish of St. Magnus which lay at the north end of London Bridge, where he also held a brewery called "le Glene" and a tavern called "le Fishwharf at le Hole", along with properties in two other city parishes and in Essex at Wennington and neighbouring Aveley, just north of the Thames not far outside London. Aveley must point to his parental village. The main concern of his will, besides assuring his widow of a life interest in his property, was to provide for chantries for the benefit of himself, his first wife, his parents and others, in St. Magnus church or, failing that, in the chapel atop London Bridge; among other charitable legatees he particularly mentions a hospital in Southwark looking after the poor.

The shared surname does not necessarily suggest the pair were related, but rather is indicative of their common occupation of lime-burner. Agnes had the larger share of the king's business in this project and it is interesting to find a woman engaged in this occupation (without being referred to as a widow).

"Bartholomew le Spicer"
It seems improbable that the Italian merchant also known as Bartholomew le Lumbard between 1299 and 1319 would be the same man, unless he was quite young when supplying the king with spices in 1258.

"William le Clerk"
William le Clerk potter of Aldgate purchased citizenship in December 1311, and it was in Portsoken ward that he was taxed in 1319, suggesting he resided in the parish of St. Botolph Aldgate. The following year he purchased from an Italian spicer, Guy Jacobi, an interest in a shop in the parish of St. Stephen Walbrook; in the deed there was reference to William's son and apprentice, John de Alegate, who was still a potter at his death ca.1325, leaving underage grand-daughters in the guardianship of an employee. William was probably already dead by that date (not being mentioned in John's will), and certainly by 1337, when his widow Agnes, daughter of Alan de Suffolk of Aldgate, also a potter, (who had been taxed in Portsoken ward in 1292), made her will, referring to a daughter married to another potter and property held in St. Botolph parish – probably that left her by her father ca.1308. Several other potters are documented as living in this ward around that period. There was a butcher of the same name living in Farringdon ward in 1319, but he seems a less likely candidate.

"William de Southflete"
The brief will of William de Suthflete was proved in the husting court in 1316. He left his wife Petronilla a tenement in the parish of St. Faith – which lay next to St. Paul's Cathedral and was a neighbourhood where stationers clustered – and a second on the other side of the city, in the parish of St. Clement Candlewick Street, to be sold. The stationers' had only recently crystallized into a formal organization, having received permission to form a gild in 1403. They were so named because they comprised text copyists, illuminators, and binders or sellers of books, who were stationed around the walls of the cathedral.

"Walter Lucy"
When he supplied the stationery to the Wardrobe in 1428 he was relatively new to the occupation of haberdasher, and did not formally transfer to the haberdashers' company until 1429, having taken up citizenship in 1401 as a cutler. In 1432 he was one of several members of that company to endorse a weaver's transfer into the occupation.

"Simon de Swanlond"
The Swanlonds were migrants from Yorkshire, though an earlier Simon de Swanlund who was a Londoner being recorded as holding land in Hertfordshire in 1288. Perhaps partly because of an established family connection, our Simon transferred his base of activities, along with a group of brothers (one with the same Christian name) who seem to have moved to London either together or within a few years of each other. Three of them, including Simon, were drapers and the fourth a cleric. All the brothers are subsequently seen as holding land in Hertfordshire; Simon acquired (ca.1316) the manor of North Mimms in that county , later erecting a chantry chapel there; and in 1315 his marriage to the niece of Sir Richard de Bacheworth resulted in Richard (who was about to retire to a monastery) granting him the manor of Harefield in Middlesex. His country estates provided a rationale for the knighthood with which he was rewarded in 1337 for long service to the Crown. Simon was already a successful businessman who had been buying for the king by the time he arrived in London, and when first evidenced there in 1310 had already been rewarded by a lifetime exemption from tax. So that his large tax assessment of £20 in Dowgate ward in 1319 (exceeded only by one taxpayer in the ward, draper Thomas Cok de Abyndon, listed adjacent to Simon) had a marginal notation which probably meant he did not have to pay. Between 1314 and 1327 he sold large amounts of cloth to the Wardrobe on a yearly basis, and in the opening years of Edward III was the regular supplier of the cloth required for the Christmas liveries given to royal servants. In 1315, for example, he sold fifty-one cloths through the Westminster fair to an agent of Henry Nasard (of Dowgate ward), the leading draper of the city and buyer for the king. Two years later he was tasked with acquiring 2,000 cloths for the king, being assigned an exemption from subsidy for the purpose, and in 1319 he was, in conjunction with Thomas de Abyndon, exporting wool on the king's behalf. In 1323-24 he sold £110 worth of cloth to the Wardrobe, more than any other London draper that year, and in the last months of Edward II's reign (when demand was higher due to the baronial opponents packing London to moot the king's deposition), he supplied £354 worth of scarlets, grains, and other Flemish cloths – more than a third of the total the Wardrobe purchased in that period. In the 1320s the oppression of the Despensers may have had an adverse effect on his service to the king and turned his sympathies towards the Mortimer party [Williams, op.cit., 292], yet it did not irreparably harm either Simon's business nor his relationship with the king for, when Edward fled London in October 1326, he left in Simon's safe-keeping a number of cloths, articles of clothing, and other valuables of his household. Nonetheless, it may be significant that one of the city's leading clothiers managed to avoid being burdened with civic office until after Edward II was out of the picture: he became alderman of Candlewick ward in1327 (until 1334) and mayor in 1329. He also served as warden of the drapers' gild 1328-29, and as one of the city's attorneys at the Boston fair in 1335 and 1336. In addition to royal business, he was an agent in buying from Italian firms on behalf of an archbishop of York, William de Melton, who had earlier been Controller of the Wardrobe (1307-14) and then Keeper of the Household Wardrobe (1314-16); he also happened to be a kinsman of the Swanlonds. Melton may have been responsible for finding Simon's brother, John, a job as sub-usher of the Wardrobe. Archbishop Melton became persuaded that Edward II had not died and in 1330 tried to draw Simon, when mayor, into a plot to free Edward; there is no real reason to believe this was other than disinformation, and neither Melton nor Simon seen to have suffered when, a couple of months later, the likewise duped Earl of Kent was executed for plotting to restore Edward to the throne. Simon bought up some property in London, but focused his efforts more on rural estates, and subsequent generations of the family became landed gentry, although some branches of the family remained active in London, continuing in the drapery business.

"Nicholas le Clerk"
In 1340 he leased from the daughter of the late Ralph Godchepe tenements in the parish of St. Mary le Bow (West Cheap).

"Thomas Saundres"
One of the town councillors 1409-10.

"John Stevenes"
In 1414 he was tasked with supervising the construction, on behalf of the king, of a large cannon at Bristol, and supplied iron, coal, and timber for the project.

"Wardrobe account"
Nicholas.H. Nicolas. Privy Purse expenses of Elizabeth of York, Wardrobe accounts of Edward the Fourth, London, 1830, passim.

"their expenditures"
The extracts I have selected to present have been chosen partly because they are among the more revealing in terms of sources and suppliers.

"relatively inexpensive"
As squirrel fur became more affordable for the middle class, the nobility, to emphasize its distinctiveness, disdained its use, preferring more expensive furs.

Searching for a seam was done through surface mining (digging of relatively shallow and narrow pits); in some cases – probably when a seam was struck – shafts were dug, not that deep, but deep enough to require special structures to evacuate water. The initial pits were at Rainton, to the north of Durham, and Ferryhill, to the south. Coal-mining is known to have taken place around Rainton since the twelfth century, and at both locations mining continued into the twentieth century. These were later joined by diggings at Aldin Grange.

main menu

Created: October 28, 2014. Last update: April 15, 2021 © Stephen Alsford, 2014-2021