1 C. Gross, The Gild Merchant, (Oxford, 1890), I, 108, 110, 171; C. Colby, "The growth of oligarchy in English towns," E.H.R., V (1890), espec. pp.633-34, 643; A. Green,Town Life in the Fifteenth Century, (London, 1894), espec. II, 221-22, 240, 255; A. Ballard and J. Tait, eds., British Borough Charters 1216-1307, (Cambridge, 1923), lviii; J. Tait, The Medieval English Borough, (Manchester, 1936), 28, 302-03.
2 W. Benham, ed., The Oath Book or Red Parchment Book of Colchester, (Colchester, 1907), i-ii; B. Strutt, The Constitutions of the Burgh of Colchester, (Colchester, 1822), ix-x.
3 G. Martin, The Story of Colchester, (Colchester, 1959), 36.
4 I. Gray and W. Potter, Ipswich School 1400-1950, (Ipswich, 1950), 2; M. Weinbaum, The Incorporation of Boroughs, (Manchester, 1937), 105-06; G. Martin, The Borough and Merchant Community of Ipswich, 1317-1422, (Oxford PhD thesis, 1955), 23; W. Hudson, ed., The Records of the City of Norwich, (Norwich, 1906), I, lx.
5 C. Platt, The English Medieval Town, (London, 1976), ch.4; A. Bridbury, Economic Growth: England in the Later Middle Ages, (London, 1962), 55-58; Carl Hammer, "Anatomy of an oligarchy: the Oxford town council in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries," Journal of British Studies, XVIII (1978), 1-27. See also M. Clarke, The Medieval City-State, (Cambridge, 1966), for an interpretation of continental examples, which she summarised as "from democracy, through plutocracy, to oligarchy" (p.50); however, she exhibits some confusion in attempting to reconcile contradictory evidence to this theory.
6 S. Reynolds, An Introduction to the History of English Medieval Towns, (Oxford, 1977), 171.
7 Green, op.cit., II, 240.
8 All of these terms have been used conscientiously by one writer or another, e.g.: E. Glover, King's Lynn 1400-1600, (London M.Phil thesis, 1970), 8; Reynolds, loc.cit.; B. Wilkinson, The Medieval Council of Exeter, (Manchester, 1931), 51; H. Hillen, History of the Borough of King's Lynn, (Norwich, 1907), I, 85-86; Hammer, op.cit., 25.
9 Before which, borough records are rather sparse. See G. Martin, "The English borough inthe thirteenth century," Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, 5th series, XIII (1963), 123-44.
10 E. Meyer, "English craft gilds and borough governments of the later Middle Ages," University of Colorado Studies, XVII (1929-30), 417.
11 Problems of comparability, lack of detail and incompleteness regarding extant records inhibit the use of statistics to provide more than impressionistic conclusions.
12 W. Richards, The History of Lynn, (Lynn, 1812), I, 620; M. McKisack, The Parliamentary Representation of the English Boroughs During the Middle Ages, (Oxford, 1932), 105.
13 J. Wedgwood and A. Holt, History of Parliament: Biographies of the Members of the Common House, 1439-1509, (London, 1936), x; R. Britnell, Colchester and the Countryside in the 14th Century, (Cambridge PhD thesis, 1970).
14 It is fruitless to speculate on what important information may be lost; the historian must work, cautiously, with what he has. Analyses have not been attempted where the data has been considered insufficient.
15 24, of whom 9 were M.P.s and possibly outsiders.
16 On this see R. McKinley, Norfolk and Suffolk Surnames in the Middle Ages, (Chichester, 1975), espec. comments on pp.13, 94; Platt, op.cit., 96.
17 G.C.R. 5-6 Ed.III m.2r.
18 Notably Martin, Borough and Merchant Community of Ipswich; Britnell, op.cit.; A. Saul, Great Yarmouth in the 14th Century, (Oxford PhD thesis, 1975); H. Sutermeister, The Social and Economic History of Medieval Norwich, (L.S.E. PhD thesis, unfinished).
19 This is the only town where a reasonably complete list of coroners can be reconstructed.
20 The form of years sometimes used in this thesis (e.g. 1341/2) will be understood as referring to the borough administrative year, which ran from Michaelmas to Michaelmas, except in Maldon where it began and ended in January. In Norwich the mayoral year ran from May, although the shrieval year continued to run (as the ballival year) from September. At some time in fifteenth century Ipswich it is possible that the election date of September 8 may also have become the date of assumption of office.
Structure of Borough Government | Social and Economic Background of Office-Holders
Monopolisation of Office | Attitudes Towards Office-holding | Professionalism in Administration
Quality of Government | Conflict and Solidarity in Urban Politics
|Created: July 30, 1998||© Stephen Alsford, 1998-2003|