Gascon Roll for the 34th year of the reign of Edward III
Physical condition of the roll
The roll consists of three membranes. There are entries on all of the face sides, but on none of the dorses. The roll is generally in good condition.
C 61/73 34 Edward III (1360-61)
The roll is amongst the shortest of all the Gascon rolls. Its brevity might have much to do with the distraction of events elsewhere. The roll coincides with the end of the Reims campaign of 1359-60, and the truce that ensued, combined with the commencement of peace negotiations at Brétigny in May 1360, though little of this finds any kind of direct acknowledgment in the roll. The contents of the roll are a smattering of the usual documents concerning appointments to office, grants of protection and the such like, but very little more.
Trading issues come very much to the fore in this roll. Cloth exports had been subject to a subsidy payable to the king since 1353, farmed to the London aldermen, John Malwayn and Adam de Bury from 1358, charged cloth being sealed with the coket seal. 1 Unsealed bales and those of ‘enemies’ were liable to forfeiture. Thus, the inspection of seals, and inevitably their misuse, was a critical element in the regulation of trade. John Malwayn, based in Bruges, and governor of the English merchants in Flanders from 1359, had also assumed responsibility for the receipt of ransoms, notably of David II of Scotland and of Burgundy. These contexts and connections explain the king’s support for Malwayn’s initiative and his own role in a case concerning Catalan merchants trading through Bruges, who had maintained their own council and confraternity in the city since 1330. 2 The king intervened to cause bales of cloth being shipped from Bruges, through Bordeaux and probably to Barcelona, which had been siezed in Bordeaux because of apparent irregularities over the sealing of bales, and the suspicion that they were partisans of the French and Navarrese enemy, to be restored. 3 Corn of Arnaut Eyquem, a Bordeaux merchant, arrested at Boston, after Eyquem had bought the same with the proceeds from the sale of wine he brought there, were also ordered to be restored. 4 The consequences of English successes also appear to have caught up with the men of La Rochelle, who were accused of robbing London merchants of a cargo placed in a ship of Bilbao in Lisbon to be taken to London. With the transfer of La Rochelle to English control in late 1360, the newly appointed captain of the town was ordered to do justice, although the mayor’s apparent reluctance to co-operate confirms the town’s resistance to the transfer. 5
The effects of the war appear to have induced the king to show compassion to merchants who had lost their goods and holdings in the conflict. A couple of grants of delays in the payment of creditors, and further such entries in the following rolls reveal the disruption to trade caused by the conflict. 6 The case of Roger de Chester, a burgess of La Réole of English origin, does indicate the problems that the king faced in dealing with such requests, for entries on this roll and that following granted delays in the payment of Chester's debts to his creditors, but also showed favour to his creditors seeking to overturn the grant of the delays. 7
Simon J. Harris & Philip Morgan.
- Calendar of Patent Rolls (CPR) 1358-1361, p.255.
- Maria Teresa Ferrer, ‘Catalan commerce in the late Middle Ages,’ Catalan Historical Review , 5: 29-65 (2012), 46-9.
- entry 1 .
- entry 2 .
- entry 16 .
- entry 4 & entry 8 .
- For the other entries relating to the Chester case, see entry in C 61/74 & entry in C 61/74 .
6 February 1360 . Westm' Westminster . For the merchants of Aragon .
Order to the seneschal of Gascony and constable of Bordeaux, or their lieutenants, that if it is found by the inspection of the king's charter that the seals correspond with the seals on the bales, then they are to see to it that the bails of cloth are released from arrest, and restored to the merchants of Aragon, and they are not to be unduly troubled or harmed contrary to the privileges and protections granted to the same.
Julyan Barthomeu Julià, merchant of Arragon' Aragon , 1 has shown to the king's council certain letters of John Malwayn , residing at Brugg' Bruges in Flanders , which contained amongst other things that Julià, and Père Suau , Despy Francesc Des Pi , Solers Francesc de Soler , Screre Ramon de Sa Cirera , Torela Macià Torrella , Giles Huguet Gili , Monyer Ramon Moner and Lepys Mateu Lopiç , merchants of Aragon, 2 together with their household at Bruges, who were faithful and trustworthy, came to Malwayn, and showed to him a charter of the king's under the great seal by which the Aragonese merchants were granted certain privileges and liberties, and the king received the merchants, their persons and merchandise, into his special protection and safe keeping in England and elsewhere throughout his lordship. 3 Julià complained that the merchants had loaded a cargo of bales of cloth on to an English ship called la Cristofre of Hull in Flanders to be carried to Burdeg' Bordeaux , and then on to their own lands. The bales were arrested by the seneschal and constable or their ministers at Bordeaux, as the goods of the king's French and Navarrese enemies, and are still detained against the form of the king's charter and protection. The merchants requested that Malwayn write to the king on this matter so that they can recover their cloth. Malwayn wrote to the king, as above, and added that the merchants had sworn a corporal oath in his presence that the cloth was theirs, and no-one else's, apart from a certain amount which belonged to Neuton William de Newton, a merchant of London , as was sworn by William de Swyn , Newton's attorney.
After seeing these letters, the king has also seen further letters of the constable, which have been shown to the council, which state that the cloth, baled up and sealed with Newton's seal, was on its way to Bordeaux. The constable caused them to be opened and unfolded, and it was found that the cloth was sealed with other people's seals inside, and were, therefore, suspected of belonging to the king's enemies, and that Newton was suspected of scheming with the king's enemies to cheat the king of his forfeitures, for which the bales were seized. Newton was brought before the council there to explain this, recognised his own seal, and declared that he had done this at the request of the merchants of Aragon, with whom he made an arrangement to keep the cloth safe, the merchants giving as their reason for this the fierce war between the king of Aragon and the king of Castile, which was still being waged, and because of which the merchants did not dare to seal their goods en route to Aragon with their own seals, and still do not, and that Newton cannot be blamed for doing this.
The king has considered this matter, and has seen the charter of the burgomeister, échevins and community of Bruges for the merchants in which the matter of the sealing of the bales inside is set out, and has found, after an examination conducted by good and lawful men, both native and alien, before the king's council, that the cloth so sealed, belonged to the merchants of Aragon, and not to the king's enemies, and that Newton had placed his seal on the bales for the security of the merchants, and for no other reason or evil intention. The king does not wish the merchants to suffer injustice over the restitution of their cloth contrary to the liberties and privileges that the king granted them.
By the keeper and C.
- Aragon should be understood here as the crown of Aragon (composed then of the kingdoms of Aragon, Valencia and Majorca and the counties of Barcelona (Catalonia) and Roussillon). Here they were not merchants of Aragon proper, but of Catalonia and more precisely Barcelona. See El "Llibre del consell" de la ciutat de Barcelona, segle XIV : les eleccions municipals , ed. C. Batlle i Gallart et alii (Barcelona, 2007).
- In fact merchants of Barcelona (Catalonia).
- Calendar of the Patent Rolls (CPR), 1358-1361 , p.285.
14 February 1360 . Westm' Westminster . For the releasing from arrest of corn, and its carriage to Gascony .
Order to the collectors of the customs in Sanctus Botolphus Boston that if the corn of Aykeni Arnaut Eyquem, merchant of Burdeg' Bordeaux , was arrested, then it should be released from arrest, and they should permit Eyquem to take it to Gascony without impediment, provided he has paid the customs and subsidies. Eyquem lately brought wine from Gascony to Sanctus Botolphus Boston , and there exchanged it for 200 quarters of corn which was loaded on to a ship in the port to be taken to Gascony, and the same corn was arrested by Ralph de Kesteven and Thomas Staple , the king's serjeant-at-arms, and he requests that it be released, and the king wishes to agree to this.
Attested by the keeper .
By the keeper and C.
18 May 1360 . Westm' Westminster . Of safe keeping for the inhabitants of Le Fleix .
To all seneschals, constables, castellans, prévôts, bayles and all other faithful subjects in the duchy of Aquitaine.
Letters of protection during pleasure, granted to the burgesses and inhabitants of the place of Fleye Le Fleix , their wives and households, and also their lands, tenements, fees, vineyards, meadows, woodland, dues, tolls and all their other just possessions, seisins, franchises, customs, liberties, and privileges, and to all merchants of the same place, subjects of the king, who regularly trade, together with their merchandise, as the king, wishing to show them favour, has received them into his special protection and safe-keeping. They are to be maintained in all their just possessions or franchises, customs, liberties and privileges, and no one is to be permitted to injure or harm them. If any of them have forfeited anything, or anything has been done against them, it is to be put right without delay. And so that no-one can be excused by ignorance of this protection, it is to be publicly proclaimed in appropriate places and the king's standards ( vexilla ) or pennons ( penuncelli ) is to be affixed on the gates of the places, and on the houses and goods of the burgesses, inhabitants and merchants. The king does not wish this safe keeping to be used to aid any of the burgesses, inhabitants or merchants in legal cases against fellow burgesses, nor to prevent the king's proctors intervening in such cases.
16 July 1360 . Westm' Westminster . For a delay [in the payment] of debts for Roger de Chester .
To all constables, prévôts, bayles, officers and other ministers of the king in the duchy of Aquitaine, or their lieutenants.
Grant, out of compassion, to Cestre Roger de Chester, burgess of La Reule La Réole , of a delay for three years from the date of these presents in the payment of his debts, the king not wishing that he be impleaded or troubled in any court of Gascony, or harmed in any other way during the three years. It is ordered that he is not to be troubled or harmed in any way contrary to this grant. Chester, on account of the war there, and because of various misfortunes, has lost all of his goods, and has no means to pay his many creditors, who demand payment, and he has requested that the king grant him this delay for a certain term according to the custom used there. 1
For Monicot de France.
Order to the seneschal of Gascony, or his lieutenant, to deliver the prévôté of Marmande , with its issues and emoluments, to Franc' Monicot de France, king's valet , to hold the same according to the tenor of the king's letters granting him the same. On 31 May 1354, the king granted the custody of the same to France, by his special grace and in compensation for the damage and losses that he sustained in the king's wars in Britann' Brittany , Pictavia Poitou and Gascony, holding the same for life once it returned into the king's obedience, it then being in the hands of the king's enemies, if he has conducted himself well towards the king in the meantime; taking 200 gold écu ( florenum auri de scuto ) each year from the issues and emoluments for his life, and answering at the Bordeaux exchequer each year, just as is more fully contained in the king's letters patent. 2
- A note in the margin states ' extractus '.
- For the original letters patent, see entry in C 61/66 .
18 August 1360 . Westm' Westminster . For Johan Brocas .
Order to the seneschal of Gascony and constable of Bordeaux, or their lieutenants, to summon Magistro Bernat de Mestre, burgess of Burdeg' Bordeaux , and to strictly enjoin him to pay to Johan Brocas, kt , the 40 l. each year from Mestre's farm of the [office of the] issac custom on wine in the city and suburbs of Bordeaux, from the time of the grant to him, each year for the duration of his six year term, according to the tenor of the king's letters and order to Mestre. If Mestre refuses, then the issac is to be resumed into the king's hands, and delivered to Brocas, to have the same in the aforesaid form.
The king, by his letters patent, granted to Brocas for his life the 40 l. which Mestre was bound to render to the king for his farm of the issac on 1 November 1 for the six years of his term. Mestre was to pay the sum to Brocas in person until the end of his term, and was accordingly ordered to pay it, but Brocas has complained that Mestre has refused to pay it, which the king accepts, and he has asked for a remedy. The king wishes to see the grant put into effect. 2
21 August 1360 . Westm' Westminster . Concerning delays [in the payment] of debts .
To all constables, prévôts, bayles, officers and other ministers of the king in the duchy of Aquitaine, or their lieutenants.
Grant, out of compassion, to Guiraut de Thacu , 1 of a delay until Michaelmas next, and then for two years in the payment of his debts, the king not wishing that he be impleaded or troubled in any court of Gascony, or harmed in any other way during the term. It is ordered that he is not to be troubled or harmed in any way contrary to this grant. Thacu has exerted himself for the king in his wars, not without great labour and costs, and on account of the war has lost the greater part of his goods, and has no means to pay his many creditors, who demand payment, and he has requested that the king grant him this delay for a certain term according to the custom used there.
- The name Thacu could possibly correspond to the family name 'Tacon' which existed at Bordeaux at this period.
25 August 1360 . Westm' Westminster . For the transport of corn to Gascony .
To sheriffs, mayors, bailiffs, ministers, lords, masters and mariners and other faithful subjects.
Grant of a licence to Robert Monk that he can take 200 quarters of corn, which he bought in Lenn' Lynn , to Gascony for the sustenance of the king's faithful subjects there, he having sworn a corporal oath that he will not take the corn anywhere else than Gascony. It is ordered that Monk is to be permitted to load the corn in the port and take it to Gascony without impediment, paying the due customs, any order, proclamation or prohibition to the contrary notwithstanding.
By letters of the chancellor.
8 September 1360 . Westm' Westminster . For the merchants of Bristol .
Order to the seneschal of Gascony, constable of Bordeaux and the mayor of Bordeaux , or their lieutenants, diligently to obtain information on the complaint of the vintners and other merchants of Bristoll' Bristol , by all means that they consider expedient, and if they find that the prosecution brought against them by Cornyssh William Cornish of Burdeg' Bordeaux , owner of the ship called la Graciane of Baiona Bayonne , and the arrest of the merchants and their goods in Burdeg' Bordeaux , were as a consequence of the earlier condemnation and judgment made in Bristol, and not for any other reason, then all of the merchants of Bristol, and their goods and merchandise, then under arrest are to be released from arrest without delay, and the merchants and Berau Arnaut Barau, merchant of Bordeaux , who had also been prosecuted in this case, are not to be troubled, or in any way harmed by Cornish's suit, and if a marque has been put on their persons or goods it is to be superseded. Anyone who feels aggrieved is to pursue his suit with the king.
The vintners and other merchants have complained to the king, showing that whereas Venere Jordan Bénesse, master of the ship la Graciane , which was owned by Cornish 1 provoked by the suit of Pylk Henry Pilk who had complained before the bailiffs of Bristol that la Rule Johan de Larreule and Bertholomiu Bernès , Jordan’s servants, had stolen from Coumbe John de Coombe , his servant, while at sea on board la Graciane , 22 l. in gold and bows, arrows, swords and other goods and chattels, to the value of 40 l. , and justice was requested in the king's court of Bristol. Judgment was made in Pilk's favour, and the master and ship were seized. Because of this verdict, the goods and merchandise of Stok John Stock and other Bristol merchants were seized in Bordeaux at the suit of Cornish, who complained that his ship and goods had been unjustly seized in Bristol by John and others, and given into the keeping of Arnaud Barau until sentence was passed. Later, at the suit of the Bristol merchants and according to the laws of those parts, Barau handed the goods over to the Bristol merchants.
Afterwards, by virtue of a writ of the king, obtained by Cornish's complaint to the king, alleging that the merchants and their goods and merchandise were arrested because of certain trespasses done by them and others of Bristol, with the arrest of his ship and the imprisonment of its master, and for the detention of of 90 m. owed to him for the freight of his ship, and that Barau had released the goods before the case was settled and without the authority of the king's court, the mayor of Bordeaux was directed to hear Cornish's complaint and do justice. Nevertheless, Cornish has procured the arrest of the merchants and their goods and merchandise, and their continued detention, and has maliciously and unjustly prosecuted Barau in the king's court of Bordeaux for his delivery of the goods and merchandise of the merchants, to Barau's great harm, such that Bristol merchants have not dared to come to Bordeaux with merchandise, buy wine and import it into England and have requested a remedy, and the king does not wish that judgments passed in English courts are upset by judgments elsewhere. 2
- The entry actually identifies both Bénesse and Cornish as master, but it seems likely that the clerk made an error, and Bénesse was in fact the master, and Cornish the owner, which would explain why Cornish was able to pursue the legal action in Bordeaux while his ship and its master were under arrest in Bristol.
- For an earlier stage in this case, see entry in C 61/63 .
Same as above For general attorney .
Letters of general attorney in England, for one year, for the same Arnold [Savage] , who is staying in Gascony in the king's service, nominating Apulderfeld' William de Aperfield and John Barler , clerk , alternately. 1
- The entry is followed by a gap on the membrane until the last two entries.
8 November 1360 . Westm' Westminster .
To all seneschals, constables, judges, prévôts, mayors, bayles, officers and other ministers and faithful subjects of the king's in the duchy of Aquitaine.
Pardon, at the request of the captal de Buch, to Furt Guichard Fort, kt , of suit of the king's peace for the death of Dirissan Ramon d'Eyrissan, burgess of Burdeg' Bordeaux , and of any appeals and banishment if it has been pronounced for that reason, and grant of the king's peace. The lands, tenements, rents, possessions and other goods and chattels confiscated for this reason are to be restored.
By writ of p.s.
Same as above
And it is ordered to the seneschal of Gascony and constable of Bordeaux, or their lieutenants, to cause Guichard [Fort] to be wholly restored to his lands, tenements, rents, possessions and other goods and chattels, and that he is not to be troubled in relation to this matter.
By the same writ.
12 December 1360 . Westm' Westminster . Concerning [the sending] of corn to Gascony .
Order to the bailiffs of Sanctus Botolphus Boston to take an oath from Marry Bertran de Marrey, merchant of Burdeg' Bordeaux , that he will take the 100 quarters of wheat, 500 quarters of beans and other corn contained in 36 tuns in Boston, to Gascony and nowhere else, and permit him to take the same to there, having paid the due customs, any order to the contrary notwithstanding, the king having granted that Marrey could do this. 1
- The entry is followed by a space on the membrane before the next entry, containing a blank set of entry marks.
20 January 1361 . Westm' Westminster . For Robert de Stretton and John Turnegold .
Order to the captain of La Rochele La Rochelle , 1 and the mayor, jurats and consuls of the same town , to diligently consider the case of Robert de Stretton , and Tornegold John Turnegold , citizens and merchants of London, 2 concerning the seizure by men of the town of the ship carrying their goods, and do full and speedy justice to them on the restitution of their goods and merchandise, and the damages suffered by them, or an estimate or the value of the same, without delay, just as by right and according to the form of the truce ought to be done.
Lately, Stretton and Turnegold have complained that Turnegold loaded a ship called la Sainte Marie of Bilbawe Bilbao , of which Juan Chenche 3 was master, with various goods and merchandise to the value of 1,000 l. and more, at Lusshebon' Lisbon , during the truce between the king and his French adversary. The ship was to go to London for them to trade their goods, but Bernard Cache of La Rochele La Rochelle , and a great number of evil-doers, his accomplices, came in a great ship called la Seinte Croice of La Rochele La Rochelle , and seized the ship and the merchants' goods and merchandise, during the truce, by armed power, and took it to Harfleu Harfleur in Normann' Normandy , where they disposed of it at their will, to the great damage and impoverishment of the merchants, and contrary to the truce. The merchants requested that the king provide them with a remedy.
The king ordered his then seneschal of Gascony, to order the captain of La Rochelle to do full and speedy justice to the merchants on the restitution of their goods and merchandise, or its value. If they were deficient in doing justice, then the seneschal was to provide the merchants with a suitable remedy by [letters of] marque, or by other ways and means, and the king was to be certified on this. Although the seneschal received the letters and diligently required the late mayor, jurats, consuls and inhabitants of La Rochelle to do this, the late mayor failed to do anything, and wrote to the seneschal making worthless answers, so that no justice was done to the merchants. The seneschal caused a search to be made throughout the duchy for the goods of the mayor, jurats, consuls and inhabitants by which the merchants could have restitution, but none could be found, as the seneschal has certified to the king.
Afterwards, the merchants again requested a remedy, and the king, wishing to be fully certified on the circumstances of the seizure of the ship, ordered the sheriff of Cornub' Cornwall to hold an inquisition on this by the oaths of good and law-worthy men of the coast and elsewhere in his bailiwick, which he did, and returned the same into chancery, which confirmed the merchants account, noting that the ship was taken near the coast of the county, and that the damages suffered by the merchants amounted to 200 l. in excess of the 1,000 l. value of the goods and merchandise, and upon which the merchants have now again requested remedy since they have received no restitution, and the king wishes to provide them with satisfaction. 4
- Bertran I de Montferrand, lord of Montferrand .
- Turnegold is probably the same individual, a fishmonger, who served as one of the sheriffs of London in 1366-7 (see Barron, C.M., London in the Later Middle Ages , p. 332).
- The Basque name 'Xenxe' (to be pronounced 'Chenche') is a nickname of 'Bixente' (Vincent in Basque). His first name was in Basque either Jon, Joanes or Iban.
- For a related entry giving additional details of process, see entry in C 61/81 . See also entry in C 61/60 . For a related petition on this matter, see TNA, SC 8/287/14314.
For Roger d'Ore.
3 December 1360 . Westm' Westminster .
And it is ordered to Mountferant Bertran [I] de Montferrand, captain and governor of the castle and town of La Rochelle , or his lieutenant, to admit Roger [d'Ore] to the office [of the prévôté of Andilly ], with its appurtenances, and permit him have and exercise the same in person or by a deputy, according to power and effect of the king's letters.
Grant to Richard Sturry, king's valet , of the custody of all brefs de Bretagne received at Burdeg' Bordeaux from ships which customarily pertain to the duke of Brittany , 2 who is presently in the king's custody. He is to hold the same for as long as the duchy remains in the king's hands, taking such wages and fees as others who have previously held the office have been accustomed to take, provided that he answers to the king for the issues of those brefs . 3
By writ of p.s.
- A note in the margin states ' extractus '.
- Jean IV de Montfort , duke of Brittany.
- For a regrant of the office to Sturry, made because he had been kept out of the office, see entry in C 61/74 . For further discussion of these brefs de mer called here brefs de Bretagne (writs of Brittany), which were in fact safeguards, see Moal, L. and Gallicé, A. 'Les brefs de Bretagne : un exemple de réglementation publique en réponse aux risques maritimes dans le duché de Bretagne (XIIe-XVe siècles)', Annales de Bretagne et des Pays de l'Ouest , 119 (2012), pp. 81-108.