Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397

1397 Legitimation of the Beauforts

1397 John Beaufort created Earl Somerset

1397 Thomas Haxey's Case

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397 is in Parliament Rolls.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The Opening of Parliament

1 Be it remembered that on Monday the feast of St Vincent, in the twentieth year of the reign of our lord the king Richard the second since the conquest [22 January 1397], the king being in parliament, the bishop of Exeter, chancellor of England, by the king's command explained and announced the reason for the summoning of this parliament; claiming by the great authority of holy scripture that it pertains to every Christian king to do four things in his parliament, to the pleasure of God and for the good governance of his kingdom. First, that holy church be governed and defended in peace and tranquillity, with its rights and liberties. Second, that all the subjects and people of his kingdom be governed in justice and peace without oppression, and that malefactors be punished and chastised as they deserve. Third, that the good laws of his kingdom be maintained and governed, and if any laws or customs be not good or profitable, then to amend them, or ordain and establish other laws and ordinances necessary for the peace and quiet of the people of his kingdom. Also, fourth, that the people in his kingdom be defended from enemies without. All of which four points thus explained, the king willed and granted that they would be done and upheld as best they might be, with God's aid and by the good counsel of the estates of his kingdom. And he willed that holy church principally, and the lords spiritual and temporal, cities and boroughs, should have and enjoy their liberties and franchises as they reasonably had them in the time of his noble progenitors the kings of England and in his own time.

2. Furthermore, the chancellor explained and declared in general to the lords and commons the burden and peril of the enemies of Scotland, and of the land of Ireland, and of the duchy of Guyenne, and of the marches of Calais, so that provision might be made by their good advice for the better governance and salvation of the said parts, and against the enemies without, to the great honour and profit of the king and salvation of the kingdom, and with the least burden and expense for the people. And then he said that the king had ordained and assigned certain clerks to receive particular petitions on causes and matters pertaining to parliament, and certain lords to try and to answer the same petitions in the customary manner, the names of which clerks and lords follow:

3. Receivers of petitions from England, Ireland, Wales, and Scotland: Sir John Scarle, Sir Robert Farington and Sir John Rotherham.

4. Receivers of petitions from Gascony and from other lands and countries overseas, and from the Channel Islands: Master Richard Rouhale, Sir Hugh Gaudeby and Sir John Wakering.

5. The following are assigned to be triers of petitions from England, Ireland, Wales, and Scotland:

The archbishop of Canterbury.

The duke of Guyenne and duke of Lancaster.

The duke of Gloucester.

The bishop of London.

The bishop of Winchester.

The abbot of Westminster.

The earl of Derby.

The earl of Arundel.

The earl of Warwick.

Lord Neville.

Sir Richard le Scrope.

Sir Philip Spenser.

Sir Walter Clopton.

William Thirning.

William Rickhill.

John Wadham.

- to act all together, or at least six of the aforesaid prelates and lords; consulting with the chancellor, treasurer, steward, and chamberlain, and also the king's serjeants when necessary. And they shall hold their session in the chamberlain's room near the Painted Chamber.

6. The following are assigned to be triers of petitions from Gascony and from other lands and countries overseas, and from the Channel Islands:

The archbishop of York.

The duke of York.

The bishop of Ely.

The bishop of Chester.

The abbot of Waltham.

The earl of Rutland.

The earl marshal.

The earl of Northumberland.

Lord Despenser.

Lord Grey of Ruthin.

John Hull.

Hugh Huls.

John Markham.

- to act all together, or six of the aforesaid prelates and lords; consulting with the chancellor, treasurer, steward, and chamberlain, and also the king's serjeants when necessary. And they shall hold their session in the Marcolf Chamber.

And those who wish to submit petitions should hand them in between now and next Friday evening [26 January 1397].

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The Protestation of the Commons

7. Also, the following Tuesday [23 January 1397], the commons presented Sir John Bushy as their common speaker, with whom the king was well pleased. And then the said Sir John prayed of the king that he might make a protestation that if he should say anything through ignorance or otherwise which had not been agreed by his companions, etc., that he might be corrected by his said companions; to which the king agreed, as he should by right and reason. And on the same day the duke of Lancaster asked the king to do justice to Sir Thomas Talbot, etc.. And then the chancellor explained to the commons that although he had explained in general the reason for summoning the parliament, on the morrow following, at eight o'clock [24 January 1397], the officers would explain it more particularly, that the commons might be better informed; and they were ordered to make haste in the business of parliament. And later the chancellor, at the king's command, charged all the lords spiritual and temporal to be at parliament each day at nine o'clock at the latest, and that no lord should absent himself in any way without the special permission of the king himself.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The Reason for Summoning Parliament

8. Also, on the following Wednesday [24 January 1397], the chancellor, treasurer, and clerk of the privy seal, the bishop of Chester and others of the king's council explained and declared in the refectory of Westminster to the commons the particular intent of the king and the reason for summoning the parliament. On the same day, the commons came before the king and lords in parliament and prayed that all the lords spiritual and temporal who were absent be sent for to come to parliament. To which they were given answer by the chancellor, on the king's orders, that it would cause too long a delay in parliament. Nevertheless it pleased the king that during the course of parliament he would send again for the lords who were nearby.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The disclaimer of the commons touching the promise of the expedition of Lombardy

9. Also, on the following Thursday, the commons came before the king and lords in parliament and explained to the king that although the archbishop of Canterbury and the earl of Rutland and the earl marshal had told them that the king had heard that there were some who intended to oppose the expedition of the said earls promised to his honourable compeer of France towards the parts of Lombardy, and had incited and procured the commons to request of the king our lord that the said expedition be prevented, and that he break the promise thereon made by him to his said compeer of France, the same commons excused themselves, for that neither they nor any one of them had ever had such purpose nor intent, nor had they spoken amongst themselves, nor had any others instructed them to make a request about nor to influence our lord the king contrary to the honourable promise aforesaid; but that they thanked him most wholeheartedly for the his honourable bearing, for the honour of himself and his kingdom, both in that matter and in others with his said compeer on his last expedition to France, as is well known to a great part of Christendom. And although the said lords in relating it explained to the said commons the gracious intent of our lord the king, that neither the commons nor the realm would be bound nor charged by virtue of that expedition; nevertheless the said commons prayed and protested that although the king of his own authority and will had granted such an expedition, that neither in this expedition nor in anything else which might arise in future, would they be a party, nor suffer loss, but be wholly excused. To which the king replied in his own words in full parliament, and said to the commons that they should not marvel at the said promise; and he kindly explained to them certain reasons which encouraged him to make the promise of the said expedition.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The reason for the said promise expounded by the king himself

10. Firstly, the king, considering how in the past there had been very great trouble and unbearable destruction by war between the two realms of England and France, thought that the greatest good anyone could do for another to oblige him and be the more bound to him, was to aid and relieve him in his trouble and need. Wherefore, with the good intention of pacifying and ending the wars of the kingdom, and to save the troubles which arose through war for his kingdom and his people, and also so that such great benefit and promise might provide a powerful reason for the peace, quiet, and salvation of his kingdom and his lieges of England, and to move his said compeer of France to greater affection for himself and his kingdom and his people in time to come, he made the said promise. The second reason is because his said compeer is cousin to our lord the king, and now his compeer by virtue of this alliance is the more bound to please and relieve him in his need. The third reason is because his said compeer of France, and he himself, are considered two of the most worthy and valiant Christian princes; and for this reason if they happen to know of any king, prince, or other person, whosoever it may be, who by tyranny would conquer and destroy the Christian people in whatsoever parts, they are bound by right, to the reverence of God, to destroy such a tyrant and destroyer, and restore and recover those oppressed and deprived of their estate. And further our lord the king said that he wished to be at large and at liberty to command his people, to send them to aid his friends, and to dispose of his own goods at his will, where and whensoever he chose.

11. And further, on the other hand, the king, recalling that on the second day of parliament [23 January 1397], his uncle of Lancaster made him a request regarding certain grievances inflicted on him by Sir Thomas Talbot, whereof it was his wish that justice be done as an example to such lawlessness, and saying that had he been greater or lesser, of whatever condition he had been within his realm, who committed wrong, excess, or oppression against any of his lieges contrary to the law, of which he had knowledge of the truth, that he would deliver full justice and punishment thereon according to the law, whether he be of his blood of otherwise, showing no favour to anyone.

12. And later, the chancellor at the king's command said to the commons that on the following Friday [26 January 1397] the king's officers would come to the commons to explain to them in greater detail and discuss with them certain charges, the reasons for which they explained to them on the third day of the parliament [23 January 1397] last past.

13. Also, on Friday, the feast of Candlemas [2 February 1397], the king summoned to himself at Westminster, after he had eaten, in the said [p. iii-339][col. a] parliament, the lords spiritual and temporal, and explained to them that he had heard that they had been with the commons on the previous Thursday [1 February 1397], and that the commons had commented to them and touched on various matters, some of which it seemed to the king were contrary to his regality and estate and his royal liberty, ordering the chancellor to tell and reveal the aforesaid matters to him. Whereupon the same chancellor, at the king's command, told him of the same matters, which were fourfold. One concerned a statute made on sheriffs and escheators, that they should be sufficient persons of land or rent, and that they ought not to remain in office for longer than a year: concerning which the commons complained that the statute was neither kept nor upheld. Another point touched the march of Scotland, and the great oppressions and outrages committed and attempted by the Scots against the treaties reached between the two kingdoms, to the destruction of the march and the king's lieges; for which they prayed that remedy be ordained at the good discretion of the king and lords. The third point, touching a statute made on liveries of badges, was that valets who were called the yeomen of lords, who were not servants or menials of the lords, should not wear such liveries of badges, so as to avoid maintenance and duress which were done in the land by colour of such liveries, to the oppression of the people and the disturbance and execution of the law. And concerning that the commons prayed that the statute be upheld, and that a certain penalty be ordained thereon by the advice of the lords.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The king's will thereon announced to the lords

15. Also, as to the fourth article, touching the expenses of the king's household and the presence of bishops and ladies in his company, the king took great offence and affront in that the commons who were his lieges should wrongly take upon themselves or presume any ordinance or governance of the kingking's person, or his household, or other persons of standing whom it should please him to have in his company. And it seemed to the king that the commons committed a great offence therein against his regality and his royal majesty, and the liberty of himself and his honourable progenitors, which he was bound and willed to maintain and sustain by the aid of God. Wherefor the king ordered the said lords spiritual and temporal that on the following Saturday morning [3 February 1397] they should explain and declare in full to the said commons the king's will in the matter. And further, the king understanding that the said commons had been influenced and informed by a bill delivered to them to present and explain the said last article, so he ordered the duke of Guyenne and of Lancaster to charge Sir John Bushy, speaker for the commons, on his allegiance to recount and tell him the name of whomsoever submitted the said bill to the said commons.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The excuse and submission of the commons to the king

16. Item, on Saturday, the morrow of the said feast of Candlemas [3 February 1397], the lords spiritual and temporal were with the commons and showed them the king's will and command, and the said commons delivered the said bill to the lords, with the name of the person who submitted it to them, namely Sir Thomas Haxey. Which bill was later delivered to the clerk of the crown by the clerk of parliament by the king's command, and immediately afterwards the commons came before the king in parliament by his command. And there with all the humility and obedience that they could, they lamented, as was apparent from their mien, that the king had formed such an impression of them, praying most humbly of the king to hear and accept their excuse that it had never been their intent nor will to speak, show nor do anything which would give offence or displeasure to the king's royal majesty, nor against his royal estate or liberty; and especially in the matter concerning his own royal person and the governance of his household, or of the lords and ladies in his company, nor in any other matter which touched himself: knowing and understanding well that such things did not pertain to them, but only to the king himself and to his ordinance. For that their intent was, and is, because of the great affection they bear for the king as faithful lieges, that the lords should ask the king to consider his honourable estate and do thereon whatsoever pleased him, and even though the king perceived differently, that it was not their intent which weighed heavily upon them. And thereupon the said commons humbly submitted themselves to the grace and will of the king, imploring his royal majesty graciously to hold them excused: saying also that they were always ready to do their utmost to save his royal estate and liberty, and to do in body and goods, as loyal lieges were bound to do, that which might be to the honour and salvation of his royal majesty.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: How the king graciously held them to be excused

17. Whereupon the chancellor, by the king's command, said to the commons that the king of his royal kindness and gracious lordship considered the aforesaid commons wholly excused, and promised them good lordship, as had always been his will, charging them that on the following Monday they should proceed with the business of parliament as best they could. And further, the king himself said to the commons that they were bound to him in many ways, and now especially, inasmuch as he, for their ease and tranquillity, would abstain from making or demanding a charge from them in tenths or fifteenths, nor did he think to charge them in future for any such charge concerning his own body or person.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The grant of the subsidy

18. The commons of the realm, by the assent of the lords spiritual and temporal, have granted to our very redoubtable and very powerful lord the king twelve pence in the pound on every kind of merchandise, and three shillings per tun of wine, coming into the kingdom and leaving the same, from the feast of St Andrew, in the twentieth year of the reign of our said lord the king [30 November 1396], for three years next following [29 November 1399]. And also the subsidy on wool, hides and woolfells from the said feast of St Andrew in the said twentieth year for five years then next following [29 November 1401], to be levied as it was levied by virtue of the last grant, so that no levy, nor coercion to make payment, nor surety of payment, shall be made of the aforesaid subsidies after the terms appointed above without the authority of parliament.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: Ordinance on bullion

19. Be it remembered that it was ordained in this parliament, with the assent of the same parliament, that each and every merchant, as well denizens as aliens, who should wish to take out of England wool, hides or woolfells, should pay one ounce of gold in foreign coin for every sack of wool, and one such ounce for every half last of hides, and one such ounce for every two hundred and forty woolfells, to the king's bullion in the Tower of London, within half a year from the time of the custom and cocketing of the same wool, hides and woolfells, and in and under the name of him from whom they shall thus be customed and cocketed. And that the said merchants, if they do not pay one such ounce of foreign coin for every sack of wool and for every half last of hides, and for every two hundred and forty woolfells to the said bullion, in the aforesaid form, should pay the king for every sack of wool thirteen shillings and four pence, and on every last of hides thirteen shillings and four pence, and on every four hundred and eighty woolfells thirteen shillings and four pence, in addition to the customs and subsidies and other dues owed thereon. And that each and every such merchant, before they take the said wool, hides, and woolfells out of any ports of the kingdom of England, should find sufficient surety to the king's customs officers in the same ports to pay the said ounces of gold to the said bullion in the aforesaid form.

Whereupon writs of proclamation were directed to the mayors and bailiffs of the cities and towns where the staples are. Also, writs to the collectors of customs and subsidies in the ports where the staples are, to take surety from the said merchants, and to notify thereof the keeper and master of the mint in the said Tower of London, as appears from the tenor of the said writs transcribed below:

Writs made thereon.

20. The king to the mayor and sheriffs of London, greeting. Whereas in our last parliament it was ordained, with the assent of the same parliament, that each and every merchant, as well denizen as alien, who shall wish to take any wool, hides, or woolfells out of our kingdom of England, should deliver and bring one ounce of gold in foreign coinage for each sack of wool, and a similar ounce for every last of hides, and a similar ounce for every two hundred and forty woolfells, to our bullion in our Tower of London, within half a year from the time of customing and cocketing the wool, hides and woolfells, in and under the name of him by whom they were thus customed and cocketed; and that the said merchants, if they did not pay one ounce of this kind of foreign coinage for each sack of wool and each half last of hides and every two hundred and forty woolfells to our aforesaid bullion in the above manner, should pay us for every sack of wool thirteen shillings and four pence; and for every last of hides thirteen shillings and four pence; and for every four hundred and eighty woolfells thirteen shillings and four pence; in addition to the customs and subsidies and other dues owed thereon. And that all and singular such merchants before exporting the aforesaid wool, hides, and woolfells from any port of the kingdom of England should find surety to our customs officers in the same ports to pay and deliver the ounces of gold to our aforesaid bullion in the aforesaid form. We order you publicly to proclaim all and singular the aforesaid things in the said city and suburbs of the same wheresoever shall seem best to you, and cause them to be firmly kept as best you can. Witnessed by the king at Westminster on 20 February 1397.

Similar writs were sent to all the mayors and bailiffs of the cities and towns where the staples are.

Writs for taking surety.

The king to the collectors of customs and subsidies on wool, hides, and woolfells in the port of our city of London, greeting. Whereas in our last parliament, etc., as above, as far as to deliver and bring, and then thus - We order you that from every such merchant, before they take the aforesaid wool, hides, and woolfells from the said port of London, you take sufficient surety, for which you will answer to us at your peril, that they will deliver such ounces of gold to our aforesaid bullion in the aforesaid form, from time to time under your seal clearly and distinctly notifying the keeper and master of our mint in the aforesaid Tower of the surety thus taken, and of the names of the aforesaid merchants, and of the number of sacks of wool and hides and woolfells which are taken out of the said port. Witnessed as above.

Similar writs are sent to the king's collectors of customs and subsidies in the ports where the staples are under the same date.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The assent of the commons touching the statute of provisors

21. Be it remembered, touching the statute previously made on provisors of the court of Rome, that the commons of the kingdom of England now in parliament, for the great trust that they have in the person of our lord the king, and in his very excellent sense and discretion, and in the great affection and charity he has above all others for his crown and the rights thereof and the salvation of his royal estate, for their part agree in good will, in full parliament, that our said lord the king, by the assent and advice of such wise and worthy persons as it shall please him to summon for counsel in the matter, may make such allowance, ordinance, and moderation touching the said statute as shall seem most reasonable and profitable to him, to the pleasure of God and the salvation of holy church, at his high discretion, saving the rights of his crown and his royal estate, so that at the next parliament the same allowance, ordinance, and moderation may be heard and examined, and thereupon affirmed or corrected and amended or changed, according to that which shall seem best to the king by the advice of his council in the same parliament, for the honour of God and in salvation of holy church, and for the profit of his kingdom and his people.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The protestation of the prelates

22. Also, immediately afterwards, the archbishops of Canterbury and York, for themselves and for the other prelates of their provinces, spoke to the king openly in parliament, making protestation that they had made profession, and were sworn to our most holy father the pope and to the court of Rome, and therefore, if any ordinance or other thing were made or assented by the king or lords temporal upon the power and authority of parliament touching the provisions of the court of Rome which should restrict apostolic power, or be derogatory to the liberty of holy church, they neither would nor could nor ought to assent or agree thereto in any way, but oppose it and dissent on their part, in whatsoever pertained to them; saving also their estate towards the royal person of the king, to whom they gave fealty by oath for their temporalities, which they intend to guard loyally as they are bound, saving the liberty of holy church and their profession to our holy father, as is said above. And they prayed of the king that their said protestation be entered of record on the roll of parliament: which the king agreed and ordered.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: The protestation of the prelates after the judgment upon Sir Thomas Haxey

23. Be it remembered that on the Wednesday after Candlemas [7 February 1397], immediately after the judgment rendered against Thomas Haxey, clerk, who was adjudged to death in parliament as a traitor, there came before the king in parliament with great humility the archbishop of Canterbury and all the other prelates, and made full protestation that their whole and full intent was, and always would be, that the royal estate and regality of the king should be be forever saved and kept from blemish; and they humbly prayed of the king that it might please him of his grace to have pity and mercy for the said Thomas, and of his high and royal benignity to remit and release the execution of the said Thomas's death and grant and give him his life.

And the king thereupon, at the prayer of the said prelates, of his royal pity and of his special grace, remitted and released the execution of the said Thomas's death and granted him his life. Whereupon the said prelates, thanking the king for his great kindness and mercy he had shown, prayed humbly of the king that it might please him of his most abundant grace, to the reverence of God and for the honour of holy church, to grant them the keeping of the body of the said Thomas, the said prelates protesting thereon that they did not make that request nor prayer, nor demand such great grace of the keeping of his said body, for any right or due which pertained or might pertain to them in the cause, but only of the special grace and will of the king himself. Whereupon the king, only of his special grace and for the honour of holy church, and not as any due or right of the said prelates in this matter, granted and released to them the keeping of the body of the said Thomas: and thereupon he ordered Sir Thomas Percy, steward of the king's household, to deliver the body of the said Thomas Haxey to the said archbishop, to keep safely, of the king's grace, as was said above.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: On behalf of the bishop of Llandaff touching his temporalities in the vacancy

24. The bishop of Llandaff submitted a petition in parliament, the tenor of which follows:

John bishop of Llandaff shows, as well for our lord the king as for himself, in the present parliament that whereas the keeping of the temporalities of all the archbishoprics and bishoprics within the kingdom of England and land of Wales, in whichsoever lordships or franchises they may be, pertain during the vacancy of the same archbishoprics and bishoprics to our said lord the king and to none other, as by right of his crown and dignity. And whereas the bishopric of Llandaff, through the death of Andrew lately bishop there, by whose death the keeping of all the temporalities of the said bishopric ought by right to pertain to our said lord the king during the same vacancy - Thomas Beauchamp, earl of Warwick, after the death of the said bishop, entered the manor of Bishopston, part of the temporalities of the said bishopric in the lordship and land of Gower in Wales, and continues his possession still, and has taken the profits thereof, claiming to have the keeping of the said manor in times of vacancy by reason of the said lordship and land of Gower, wrongfully and in contempt of our said lord the king and in derogation of his crown. Wherefor the said bishop prays, as well for our lord the king as for himself, that the said manor with its appurtenances be seized into the hands of our lord the king and delivered to the said bishop.

Which petition having been read aloud in parliament and heard by the king and lords, the said matter was announced to the said earl of Warwick being then present in parliament, which earl having deliberated upon it could not deny the entry or occupation of the said manor and the taking of the issues and profits of the same, and had no excuse to make, but that he and his ancestors had acted in the same manner. And because he could not justify his deed, he submitted himself to the king's grace. Wherefor it was adjudged by the king and lords in parliament that the said manor of Bishopston with all its appurtenances should be taken into the king's hands, and the king answered for the issues of the said manor taken by the said earl; and writs made thereon as appropriate; and that the said earl makes fine to the king for the contempt.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: Ordinances for the mendicant orders

25. The brethren of the mendicant orders submitted their petition to parliament, the tenor of which follows:

To the most excellent prince our lord the king, the prelates and lords and also the commons present in parliament, the brethren of the mendicant orders humbly pray: that whereas by a certain custom laudably observed amongst them since ancient times, no brother of the same orders shall receive the degree of master in the theology faculty unless he be sufficient in knowledge and conduct in the opinion of his superiors in this kingdom, and so is placed and assigned to receive such a degree in his provincial chapter according to the custom of his order. And nevertheless some brethren of the said orders who are wholly unworthy and untaught procure for themselves the aforesaid degree with money which they take with them overseas; and other unreasonable exemptions, and also inhibitions to their superiors in this kingdom; so that on the return of the same they cannot be punished for their delicts, and neither can their superiors prevent them in any way from obtaining such procurations, exemptions or inhibitions, to the great prejudice of the said orders, and to the shame and disparagement of the said degree, and expressly contrary to the force and effect of the custom of laudable memory. May your excellent and most revered discretion deign to provide such remedy against the insolence of those who wickedly and fraudulently acquire for themselves the degree mentioned above, that the said custom be inviolably observed amongst them hereafter on pain of a great penalty, so that henceforth no brother of the aforesaid orders shall cross the sea without the permission of the superior of his order in this kingdom; nor that such exemption nor assignation shall be allowed, nor the master's degree in any way received, unless it be previously presented in his provincial chapter in the manner mentioned above. And if those brethren, of whatsoever order they be, who are now outside the kingdom and have procured such exemptions or assignations, or the aforesaid degree in the theology faculty against the custom described above, will not, on their return, resign all such exemptions, assignations, and aforesaid scholastic degrees and submit themselves to the discipline and correction of their superiors in this kingdom, then each and every one of them shall incur that penalty which your discretion chooses and appoints for such excesses.

Whereupon, the said petition having been read openly in parliament and heard by the king and lords, the king, by the advice and assent of the lords spiritual and temporal, wills and has ordained in this parliament that none of the brethren of the mendicant orders should cross the sea without the permission of the head of his order in this kingdom; nor that he should be allowed any exemption, assignation, nor receive the degree of master of divinity in any way, unless he be first presented in his provincial chapter; on pain of being placed outside the king's protection. And if such brethren, of whatsoever order they be, who are now outside the kingdom, or within, and have procured such exemptions, assignations, or the degree of master of divinity contrary to the custom described above, will not on their return to England resign and renounce all such exemptions, assignations, and the aforesaid scholastic degree and submit themselves to the discipline and correction of their heads in this kingdom, they shall be placed outside the king's protection.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: On behalf of the earl of Salisbury

26. William Montague, earl of Salisbury, submitted a petition in parliament, the tenor of which follows:

To our lord the king his liege William Montague, earl of Salisbury, prays: whereas the most noble King Edward [III], your grandfather, by his letters patent gave and granted to William Montague, earl of Salisbury and father of the said supplicant, whose heir he is, and to the heirs issuing from his body, with the clause of warranty of the said very noble King Edward [III] and his heirs, the castle, town and honour of Denbigh, and the cantreds of Rhos, Rhufiniog, and Cymeirch and the commote of Dinmael with their appurtenances in Wales, as plainly appears from the said letters patent: which castle, town, and honour, cantreds and commote, with their appurtenances, Roger Mortimer, late earl of March, by the name of the land of Denbigh, in Trinity term, in the twenty-eighth year of the reign of the said most noble King Edward [III] [18 June 1354-9 July 1354], before William Shareshull and his fellow justices assigned to hold the pleas before the said very noble King Edward [III], against the aforesaid supplicant, by erroneous judgment, recovered by a writ of scire facias, founded on a judgment given in the parliament held at Westminster on the Monday after the feast of St Mark the Evangelist in the twenty-eighth year of the reign of the said very noble King Edward [III], for the aforesaid Roger, on a petition showed by him to the said very noble King Edward [III] then, in the name of Roger Mortimer of Wigmore, son and heir of Edmund Mortimer, son and heir of Roger Mortimer; in which record and judgment on the said writ of scire facias there are patent errors.

May it please you of your gracious lordship to cause the full record to be brought before you, with all attachments to the same concerning the said writ of scire facias, in the present parliament, that they may be inspected and examined for error, and to forewarn Roger Mortimer, earl of March, cousin and heir of the aforesaid Roger son of Edmund, and others who are to be forewarned in the matter, to be before you at the next parliament to hear the said errors; and if they know of anything to say wherefor the aforesaid judgment on the said writ of scire facias should not be reversed, and the aforesaid supplicant restored to his said possession with the issues and profits in the meantime since the said loss, and also to do right and justice to the parties in the aforesaid manner. Whereupon, the said petition having been read before the king and lords of parliament, the king ordered Sir Walter Clopton, his chief justice, to bring before the king and lords in parliament the record of which the said petition made mention above. Which record, on the king's command, was later brought to parliament before the king and lords, and there it was read in part, and certain errors therein were pointed out and alleged by the said earl of Salisbury. Whereupon the king, by the assent and advice of the lords of parliament, the justices of the king there present, granted and ordered that the said earl have a writ of scire facias on the matter of the said petition, returnable at the next parliament, as the same petition mentions.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: On behalf of the archbishop prior and chapter of Canterbury

27. Be it remembered that the venerable father Thomas, archbishop of Canterbury, primate of all England, earnestly prayed to the lord king in the present parliament that whereas his church of Canterbury, by the gift and grant of his noble and holy progenitors, which the same king graciously confirmed, had such prerogative over the other churches of England that whatsoever archbishop of Canterbury for the time being had custody of all lordships, manors, tenements, and rents with appurtenances which were held of the same church in chief during the minority of the heirs of their tenants, even though the same tenants elsewhere held in chief of the lord king; and now concerning the castle and manor of Tonbridge, which by virtue of this prerogative were in the custody of William de Courtenay, late archbishop of Canterbury now deceased, predecessor of the present archbishop, on the day on which he died, by reason of the minority of the heir of the earl of Stafford deceased, who held the aforesaid castle and manor from the aforesaid former archbishop in chief, dispute and controversy between the present archbishop and the executors of the will of the aforesaid late archbishop are pending at present. And whereas a certain composition was drawn up a short while ago between the archbishop of Canterbury and the prior and chapter of the church of Canterbury on the matter, it pleased the lord king, having inspected and examined that composition, to order a view and settlement of the matter for the peace and right of his said church of Canterbury, as should seem best to his royal majesty, to whose ordinance and decree on the foregoing the same archbishop proclaimed himself to be firmly obedient in all things, whereupon the same lord king immediately appointed the venerable fathers Robert archbishop of York, Robert bishop of London and John bishop of Ely, and John duke of Aquitaine and Lancaster, and John earl of Huntingdon, and Thomas the earl marshal, to inspect and examine that composition, and further to discuss and settle the matter at their discretion, and fully to inform the lord king of what their deed and action should be. And later on Monday, the last day of the aforesaid parliament [10 February 1397], the archbishop of York, and the bishops, and the aforesaid duke and earls thus appointed by order of the lord king in the same parliament returned their decree and ordinance on the aforesaid matter by Walter Clopton, the lord king's justice, in this form - namely, that the third part of all manors, lands, and tenements of the inheritance of the aforesaid heir, and the issues, profits, and revenues of the same from the time of the death of the aforesaid late archbishop, should, according to the form of the aforesaid composition, remain and be in the hands of the aforesaid prior and chapter, to be used for their own purposes; and that two parts of the aforesaid lands and tenements, with the issues, profits, and revenues of the same two parts, should remain likewise in the hands of that prior and chapter, safely and securely to keep until the lord king shall have ordained to whom those said two parts of the issues, profits, and revenues shall be delivered and has declared his will thereon. And the castle of Tonbridge will be delivered to the aforesaid present archbishop of Canterbury without delay, to remain in his hands and keeping until the the coming of age of the aforesaid heir. The which ordinance and decree thus rendered by the archbishop of York, bishops, duke and earls, the aforesaid lord king, approving thereof, ordered to be placed on record on the roll of parliament at the request of the aforesaid present archbishop of Canterbury.

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: Legitimation of Beaufort

28. Be it remembered that on Tuesday, the fifteenth day of the parliament [4 February 1397], the chancellor (53), by order of the king (30), declared that our holy father the pope, in reverence of the most excellent person of the king (30) and his honourable uncle the duke of Guyenne and of Lancaster (56), and of his blood, has enabled and legitimized my lord John Beaufort (24), his brothers [Note. Cardinal Henry Beaufort 1375-1447 (22) and Thomas Beaufort 1st Duke Exeter 1377-1426 (20)], and his sister (18). And therefore our lord the king, as sole ruler of his kingdom of England, for the honour of his blood, willed and enabled of his abundant royal power, and legitimized, of his own authority, the said John, his said brothers, and sister. And he also pronounced and published the ability and legitimation, according to the form of the charter of the king made thereon.

29. Which charter was read in full parliament, and delivered to the said duke, father of the said John, and his said brothers and sister; the tenor of which charter follows:

Richard, by the grace of God, king of England and France and lord of Ireland, to our most beloved kinsmen the noble John, knight, Henry, cleric, Thomas, donzel, and our beloved noblewoman Joan Beaufort, lady-in-waiting, our most beloved cousins born of our uncle that noble man John duke of Lancaster, our lieges, greeting and the goodwill of our royal majesty. While inwardly considering how endlessly and with how many honours of parental and sincere affection of our aforementioned uncle and of his mature counsel we are on all sides blessed, we have judged it appropriate and worthy that in consideration of his merits, and in contemplation of the grace of persons, we should endow you, who are resplendent with probity and virtuous life and conduct, and are born of royal stock and divinely marked with many virtues and gifts, with the protection of grace and favour by special prerogative. Thus it is that, yielding to the prayers of our said uncle, your father, we grant to you who, so it is claimed, have suffered such defect of birth, that, notwithstanding this defect, which, together with its various consequences, we wish to be fully included in these presents, you may nevertheless receive all honours, dignities, preferments, estates, degrees, and public and private offices, both perpetual and temporal, and feudal and noble rights, by whatsoever name they are called, such as duchies, lordships, earldoms, baronies, or whatsoever other fiefs they be, whether they be dependent upon or held of us mediately or intermediately, which may be preferred, promoted, elected, taken up and allowed, and received, retained, performed and exercised prudently, freely and lawfully, as if you were born in wedlock, notwithstanding any statutes or customs of our kingdom of England decreed or observed to the contrary; and we dispense you [from this defect] by the tenor of these presents, by the plenitude of our royal power and with the assent of our parliament; and we restore you and each of you to legitimacy.

30. Also, on the Saturday [10 February 1397], the chancellor (53) announced by the king's (30) command that reason willed that one should honour and enhance the estate of worthy and virtuous persons. Wherefore the king (30) - considering the nobility and virtue of his cousin Sir John Beaufort (24), son of his uncle of Guyenne and Lancaster (56), and the great honour he had done his person on various expeditions and labours in many kingdoms and lands overseas, to the great honour of the king and kingdom; and also to encourage him and others to do such honour; and also to strengthen the royal sceptre which could best be supported in honour by worthy and valiant persons - had, of his royal dignity and special grace, made and created the said John an earl, and given him the name and honour of the earl of Somerset, to have to him and his male heirs lawfully engendered of his body, with twenty pounds a year to be taken from the issues and profits of the county of Somerset for his title and the name of earl.

Note. On 10 Feb 1397 John Beaufort 1st Marquess Somerset Dorset 1373-1410 (24) was created 1st Earl Somerset 2C 1397.

31. Whereupon the said Sir John was brought before the king in parliament between two earls, namely Huntingdon and the marshal, dressed in a cloth as a dress of honour, and his sword carried before him, the hilt uppermost. And then the king's charter of the said creation was read aloud before the king, lords, and commons in parliament. And afterwards the king himself girded the said earl with his sword and took his homage, and caused him to sit in his place in parliament, that is to say, between the earls marshal and Warwick. The tenor of which charter follows:

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: Of the appointment of the earl of Somerset

32. The king (30) to his archbishops, bishops, abbots, priors, dukes, earls, barons, justices, sheriffs, reeves, ministers, and other his bailiffs and faithful men, greeting. Know that we, considering the strenuous probity and prudent mind, distinguished conduct and nobility of birth of our beloved and faithful kinsman John Beaufort (24), knight, son of our beloved uncle John duke of Aquitaine and Lancaster (56), and willing therefore deservedly to exalt the same John Beaufort with the prerogative of honour, we do appoint and create John Beaufort earl of Somerset in our present parliament, and invest him with the style and name and honour of the aforesaid earl by girding him with the sword, to have to him and his male heirs issuing from his body in perpetuity. And that the same earl and his aforesaid heirs, given such name and honour, may the better and more honourably support the burdens incumbent upon the same, of our special grace in our present parliament we have given and granted, and by this our charter confirmed, to the same earl and his aforesaid heirs twenty pounds to be received each year from the issues of the aforesaid county by the hand of the sheriff of that county for the time being, at the terms of Easter and Michaelmas [29 September] in equal portions, in perpetuity. Witnessed by these, the venerable father Thomas archbishop of Canterbury (44) primate of all England, John of Aquitaine and Lancaster, and Edmund of York (55), dukes; Robert of London, William of Winchester (77), John of Ely, Edmund of Exeter, our chancellor (53), bishops; Henry of Derby (29), Edward of Rutland (24), Thomas of Nottingham and marshal of England (28), earls; Reginald Grey (35), Ralph Neville (33), John Lovell, knights; Roger Walden dean of York, our treasurer, Thomas Percy (54), steward of our household, Guy Mone, keeper of our privy seal, and others. Given by our hand at Westminster on 10 February in the twentieth year of our reign [10 Feb 1397].

Parliament Rolls Richard II Jan 1397: By the king in parliament

33. Also, on the same Saturday [10 February 1397], a charter of the king made to the earl marshal touching his office of marshal of England, and the gold staff adorned with the emblem of the king's arms which he will carry in his office, was read and delivered to the said earl. The tenor of which charter follows:

The king to the same, greeting. Know that whereas recently by our letters patent of our special grace we granted to our beloved kinsman Thomas, earl of Nottingham, the office of marshal of England, together with the name and honour of earl marshal, to have to him and his male heirs issuing from his body, with all the fees, profits, and appurtenances whatsoever pertaining in any way to the said office, in perpetuity; as is fully contained in the same letters. We, mindful of the gracious and laudable services often performed by the aforementioned earl, on either side of the sea, for the benefit and honour of us and our kingdom, at no small effort, cost, and charge to him; and wishing therefore to provide for the estate and honour of that earl, of our special grace have granted in our present parliament for us and our heirs to the same earl the said office, and the name, title, and honour of earl marshal of England, to have to him and his male heirs issuing from his body, together with all offices, commodities, profits and other appurtenances whatsoever, both in our courts and elsewhere, relating or pertaining in any way to the same office, in the same manner and as fully, freely, wholly, and peacefully as Thomas Brotherton, lately earl of Norfolk and marshal of England, father of our beloved kinswoman Margaret countess of Norfolk, [widow] of the aforesaid late earl, or Roger Bigod sometime earl of Norfolk and marshal of England, or any other after the death of the same former earl, or the same present earl, had or held the said office of marshal of England in their time.

Willing further and granting for us and our heirs, that the office of marshal of our Bench before us, which John Wicks holds for the term of his life by our grant, and the office of marshal in our treasury which Richard Gascoigne holds for his life by grant of our beloved brother Thomas earl of Kent, lately marshal of England, by our confirmation; and also the office of herald of the marshal before the steward and marshal of our household, which Guy Allesley holds for his life by grant of the lord Edward [III], late king of England, our grandfather, and by our confirmation; which offices after the death of the aforesaid John, Richard and Guy should revert to us and our heirs, after the death of the same John, Richard, and Guy shall remain to the aforementioned earl marshal, to have to him and his male heirs in perpetuity. And that the same offices, and all other offices in any of our courts and elsewhere, which pertained, and used to pertain to the said office of marshal of England in times past, shall be fully restored, annexed, and reunited to the said office of marshal of England in perpetuity. And that the same earl and his male heirs may give, grant, or confer those offices on any suitable persons freely and without hindrance as soon as they shall have fallen vacant by death, demise, resignation, surrender, or in any other way, notwithstanding any of our letters patent made to the contrary.

Considering also the vigour and nobility of that earl, and that he may in future the more fittingly and honourably perform and exercise the aforesaid office, we have granted for us and our heirs to the same present earl that he and his said male heirs, marshals of England, by virtue of their aforesaid office should have, carry, and bear, as well in the presence as in the absence of us and our heirs, a certain gold staff, with both ends enamelled in black, and with the emblem of our arms decorating the top of the said staff, and with the emblem of the arms of that earl decorating the bottom of the said staff; notwithstanding that the same present earl in his time, or the aforementioned former earls, or any other who had the said office of marshal of England before this time, used to carry or bear a wooden staff. Witnessed by these, the venerable fathers Thomas archbishop of Canterbury, primate of all England, Robert of London, William of Winchester, John of Ely, Edmund of Exeter, our chancellor, bishops; John of Aquitaine and Lancaster, Edmund of York, dukes, our beloved uncles; Henry of Derby, Edward of Rutland, Henry of Northumberland, earls; Reginald Grey of Ruthin, Ralph Neville, John Lovell, knights; Roger Walden, dean of York, our treasurer, Thomas Percy, steward of our household, and others. Given by our hand at Westminster on 10 February 1397.