John Brocher c. Joan Cardif alias Peryn

In July 1487, John Brocher sued a young Essex widow, Joan Cardif alias Peryn, to enforce a marriage contract he claimed they had made the previous April. The witnesses – who included Cardif’s own mother and stepfather, both of whom testified against her – said that they had heard the couple exchange vows of marriage.Continue reading “John Brocher c. Joan Cardif alias Peryn”

Prior and Convent of Blackmore c. Edward Clovell

This is a tithe dispute: Edward Clovell – evidently a prosperous farmer with several servants working for him – allegedly refused to render the tithe he owed from his harvest on one of his fields when the collectors came for it. Tithes were to be one-tenth of one’s produce or income, given to the church:Continue reading Prior and Convent of Blackmore c. Edward Clovell

Robert Philipson c Joan Corney

This is a rural Essex case of lovers pledging their love over a fruit tart eaten in a field – until a father’s hostility split them up. In 1489, Robert Philipson sued Joan Corney to enforce a marriage contract he claimed they had made. Corney, when examined, said that she had agreed to marry himContinue reading “Robert Philipson c Joan Corney”

Henry Kyrkeby c. Eleanor Roberts

Testimony in this case gives us fascinating insights into women’s employment conditions and the arrangement of marriage in rural Essex. Henry Kyrkeby’s witnesses claimed that Eleanor Roberts, a servant, agreed to marry him after meeting him once, exchanging binding vows of marriage with him at the four elms at the Hornchurch crossroads. Kyrkeby’s witnesses didn’tContinue reading Henry Kyrkeby c. Eleanor Roberts

Office c. John Eggot, John Wyndell, Thomas Auger, John Umfrey, and William Herd

In 1490, five men of the parish of Ramsden Crays in Essex were summoned to the Consistory to explain why they were refusing to pay tithes to their parish priest on their sheep. As this and other tithe cases before the Consistory make clear, local custom was important in determining what was subject to tithesContinue reading Office c. John Eggot, John Wyndell, Thomas Auger, John Umfrey, and William Herd”

Office c. Giles Eustas

Calculating where a person should pay tithes could be complicated: what happened, for instance, when the lands from which a person gained income straddled more than one parish? In this case, brewer Giles Eustas of Highgate was summoned to the Consistory, probably because the parish priest of Finchley parish, Master John Bell, disputed the proportionContinue reading Office c. Giles Eustas

Office c. John Barle

Some amusingly passive-aggressive behaviour on the part of a parishioner in the payment of his tithes in an unspecified Essex parish. John Barle came before the Consistory likely after his parish vicar reported him for not paying his tithes as required. On examination, Barle claimed that he rendered his tithes as he was supposed to,Continue reading Office c. John Barle