Patent Roll 16 Henry VI

[No date.]

ASSENT by the Jcr and council to a petition to found a guild in honour of St Anne in the church of St Peter, Drogheda:

To Richard [Talbot], abp Dublin, Jcr, and council of Ire. Petition of John [Swayne], abp Armagh, primate of Ire., Esmond White, William Hasty, Nichol Alexandre clerks, Peter Clinton, John Tayllour, John Fynglass, John Palmer, Richard Palmer, Richard White of Kylmone, and Robert Brou’ that to the honour of God, Our Lady and St Anne, [etc.], licence may be given to them for the K. and his heirs that they or those of them who survive may found a guild of St Anne, [etc.], in a chapel of St Anne newly built by the archbishop and annexed to the chancel of St Peter’s church, Drogheda, towards the north, of themselves and other persons, both men and women, honest and suitable, wishing to be of good will to them, enrol (enhereder), retain, admit and accept them as brothers and sisters of the fraternity or guild and that the brothers of the fraternity or guild so (issint) founded, commenced, begun and made [may elect] from themselves a master and two wardens each year to the rule, governance and surveillance of the fraternity or guild, for the guard of all the lands, tenements, rents, services, churches, advowsons or possessions, goods and chattels, that they in the future, for the fraternity or guild, purchase, give, grant, or assign, or to the fraternity or guild belonging avondreit and [according] to the rules, [&c.] of the fraternity or guild in the town and suburbs of the same have, and that the masters and wardens, by advice of the most worthy vaillants of their brothers, have full power that they may ether order and successfully constitute other masters and wardens from year to year for the rule [etc.], of the fraternity and for the guard of the lands [etc.], in said form to have, and that they and each of them from time to time, when he shall be master [have power] to remove from their offices, and exonerate them, and put or substitute others in their places as shall be expedient, and may have and exercise a common seal to serve the needs and affairs relating to the fraternity or guild, which seal remains under the guard of the master and wardens, and also that the master and wardens and their successors may plead and be impleaded, answer and be answered, [&c.] for the lands, rents [etc.], in whatever actions, causes, quarrels and demands, both real and personal, and mixed, of whatever nature they may be, for the name of the master and wardens before whatsoever judges, of holy church or secular, and that the master, wardens and brothers of the fraternity or guild may assemble at suitable and necessary places and time, a tant de forts (as many times) and when it will become espleit for them to treat, agree and commune (coer) but between […] (so) themselves together, to have counsel and advice for the estate and good governance of the fraternity or guild and of the brothers and sisters and their successors and make lawful and honourable ordinances for the good governance of the fraternity or guild from year to year and from time to time, when there shall be need or necessity, according to the discretion of the master, wardens and brothers and their successors for ever.

And further licence is asked that the supplicants and their survivors, to the honour of God [etc.] may make, ordain, establish, according to their discretion, or ordinance, and provision, a perpetual chantry of two chaplains or more according to the ordinance, disposition and establishment of the master, wardens and brothers to celebrate divine service each day in the chapel of St Anne perpetually for the estate of the K. and his heirs, and the souls of their ancestors, and also for the estate of the supplicants, and for their souls, and the souls of the ancestors and benefactors, and also for the estate of the brothers and sisters of the fraternity or guild and their successors, and their souls after their death, and the masters, wardens, brothers and their successors may assemble in the places and times necessary when it shall seem to them best to do, to treat and ordain for the chantry according to the ordinances in this part to be made.

And further licence is asked for the masters, wardens and brothers and their successors to purchase lands, tenements, rents, services and advowsons of churches or chapels, as well in demesne and fee as in reversion, with the appurtenances, to the value of £20 p.a., beyond charges and reprises thereof, whether they be held of the K. in chief or of others, to have and to hold to them and their successors, for ever from the chief lords of the fees for the services thereof due and of right accustomed, as well in amendment of the estate of the fraternity or guild, as to find, support and sustain the charges of the chantry and to do perpetually other works of piety for the estates and souls of the supplicants [etc.], the statute of mortmain or any other statutes and ordinances before these hours to the contrary thereof made notwithstanding, and that the master, wardens and brothers or their successors and none of them, because of the statutes be prevented therein, molested, [etc.] by the K., his heirs, ministers or officers whatsoever in time to come, and this for God and in work of charity.


Reg. Swayne, pp 178–80.

End of Roll

The following abbreviations are used within in the text of CIRCLE

  • abp = archbishop [of]
  • BMV = beate Marie Virginis [of the Blessed Virgin Mary]
  • C. = chancellor [plural: chancellors]
  • co. = county (i.e. medieval shire: lower case ‘c’) [plural. cos.]
  • dcd = deceased
  • e. = earl of
  • Edw. = Edward (used when giving dates by regnal year)
  • Eng. = England
  • esq. = esquire [plural: esquires]
  • Ex. = exchequer
  • g.s. = great seal
  • Hen. = Henry
  • Ire. = Ireland
  • Jcr = justiciar [plural: justiciars]
  • JP = justice of the peace
  • K. = king
  • kt = knight
  • Lt = lieutenant
  • O.Carm. = Order of Carmelites
  • O.F.M. =  Order of Friars Minor (Franciscans)
  • O.P. = Order of Preachers (Dominicans)
  • Ric. = Richard (used when giving dates by regnal year)
  • s. = son
  • sen. = seneschal of
  • T. = treasurer [plural: treasurers]
  • w. = wife

This glossary is by no means comprehensive. Readers may also wish to consult standard references books such as Joseph Byrne, Byrne’s dictionary of local Irish History from the earliest times to c.1900 (Cork, 2004); P. G. Osborn, Osborn’s concise law dictionary, ed. Sheila Bone (London, 2001).


  • AN = Anglo-Norman
  • Ir. = Irish
  • Lat. = Latin
  • ME = Middle English
  • OED = Oxford English Dictionary





The right of patronage or presentation to a church benefice.

allocate, writ of

A writ authorizing allowance to be made by the officers of the Ex. of a specified amount: often this amount is to be off-set against the debts owed to the K. by the beneficiary.


A form of affinity proscribed in late medieval Ireland between the Irish and the English, whereby a man stood sponsor for a child at baptism; (also) gossipred.


Technical term for legal proceedings or various kinds. See mort d’ancestor, novel disseisin.

avener [Lat. avarius]

provider of oats, esp. for the household of the K. or his chief governor


Miscellaneous merchandise sold by weight.

bonnaght [Ir. buannacht]

The billeting of mercenaries or servants.


See tun.

certiorari, writ of

Letters close issued by the K. to his officers commanding them to supply information to him concerning a specified matter, normally by searching the records.


Property, goods, money: as opposed to real property (land).

dicker [Lat. dacra]

A measure of 10 hides.


Portion (one third) of a deceased husband’s estate which the law allows to his widow for her life.


The reversion of land to the lord of the fee to the crown on failure of heirs of the owner or on his outlawry.


A survey and valuation of property, esp. one made by royal inquisition.

falding [Ir. fallaing]

A kind of coarse woollen cloth produced in Ireland; the mantle or cloak made from the same.


A fixed annual rent payable to the K. by chartered boroughs.

fotmel [Lat. fotmellum]

A measure of lead.


Technical term: the action of writing out, for instance patent letters and charters; (also) the documents thus written out.


Technical term: the action of recording in the records of the K., esp. the registering of a deed, memorandum, recognizance; (also) the specific item or record thus enrolled.


A repository for the keeping of money. The ‘clerk of the hanaper in chancery’ was the chancery official responsible for the receipt of fines for the issue, engrossment and ensealing of writs, patents and charters issued by the chancery.

herberger [Lat. herbergerius, hospitator]

One sent on before to purvey lodgings for an army, a royal train (OED).

galangal [AN galyngale]

The aromatic rhizome of certain Asian plants of the genera Alpinia and Kaempferia, of the ginger family, used in cookery and herbal medicine; (also) any of these plants (OED).

generosus [Lat.]

Term designating social status: translated as ‘gentleman’.

king's widow [Lat. vidua regis]

The widow of a tenant in chief: so called because whe was not allowed to marry a second time without royal licence.

knights’ fees

Units of assessment of estates in land. Originally a single knight’s fee was the amount of land for which the military service of one knight (=knight service) was required by the crown. ‘Fee’ derives from the Latin feudum, which in other contexts translated as ‘fief’. In practice the descent of landed estates meant that many knights’ fees came to be subdivided and, in the later Middle Ages, personal service was frequently commuted to money payments (=scutage).

liberate, writ of

A chancery writ issued to the treasurer and chamberlains of the Ex. authorizing them to make payment of a specified amount, often the annual fees, wages and rewards of the K.’s officers.

linch [Lat. lincia]

A measure of tin.


The delivery of seisin, or possession, of an estate hitherto held in the K.’s hand, for instance when a minor reaches the age of majority.


Legal term: the action of undertaking to stand surety (=‘mainpernor’) for another person; the action of making oneself legally responsible for the fulfilment of a contract or undertaking by another person (OED).

mass [Lat. messa]

A standard measure of metal.


A portion of land occupied, or intended to be occupied, as the site for a dwelling house; (also) a dwelling house together with outbuildings and the adjacent land assigned to its use (OED).

mort d’ancestor, assize of [Lat. assisa mortis antecessoris]

A legal process to recover land of which the plaintiff’s ancestor (father, mother, uncle, aunt, brother sister, nephew or niece) died seised (=in possession), possession of which was since taken by another person.

nolumus, clause of [Lat. cum clausula nolumus]

A standard clause inserted especially in letters of protection by which pleas and suits are delayed for a specified period of time.

novel disseisin, assize of [Lat. assisa nove disseisine]

A legal process to recover land from which the plaintiff claims to have been dispossessed (=disseised).

pensa See wey.
piece [L. pecia] A standard quantity of merchandise.
pendent seal Seal hanging from engrossed letters patent attached to a tongue or tag of parchment.
perpresture An illegal encroachment upon royal property.
plica A fold along the foot of engrossed letters patent and charters to create a double thickness of parchment, used for attaching the ‘great seal pendent’ to the letters. An incision was made in the plica and through which a tag of parchment was attached. A wax impression of a seal was then affixed to the tag.
protection An act of grace by the K., granted by chancery letters, by which the recipient is to be free from suits at law for a specified term; granted especially to persons crossing overseas or otherwise out of reach of the courts in the K.’s service.
quare impedit, writ of An action brought to recover the advowson of a benefice, brought by the patron against the bishop or other person hindering the presentation.
scutage The commutation of personal military service to the crown for a money payment. Normally called ‘royal service’ in Ireland.
seisin Formal legal possession of land.
sendal [Lat. cendallum; ME cendal] A thin rich silken material (OED).
stallage [Lat. stallagium, estallagium] Payment for a market stall.
tun [Latdolium] A large cask or barrel, esp. of wine.
valettus A term designating social status: translated ‘yeoman’.
Vidua Regis [Lat.] See King's widow.
volumus, clause of [Lat. cum clausula volumus] A standard clause inserted esp. in letters of protection by which pleas and suits are delayed for a specified period of time. In full the clause runs: volumus quod interim sit quietus de omnibus placitis et querelis (=we wish that meanwhile he be quit of all pleas and plaints).
waif A piece of property which is found ownerless and which, if unclaimed within a fixed period after due notice given, falls to the lord.
waivery [AN weiverie] The technical term for proceedings of outlawry in the case of women.
wey [Lat. pensa, peisa, pisa] A standard of dry-goods weight.
worsted [ME wyrstede] A woollen fabric or stuff made from well-twisted yarn spun of long-staple wool combed to lay the fibres parallel (OED).
writ [Lat. brevis] Letters close containing commands by the K. to certain specified persons, esp. royal officers. Returnable writs, which were not normally enrolled in the chancery rolls, were to be returned by the officer to chancery with details of the actions taken by the officer in response to the contents. See also allocate, certiorari, liberate.