Archdeaconry of Berkshire Act Book

BRO: D/A2/c40

ff 116v–17 (10 April) (Evidence of Thomas Goodall of Inkpen, Berkshire)

Testes inducti ex parte Anthonij Dixen de et super articulis capitulis siue Interrogatorijs ex parte sua contra quendam Willelmum Shaw de Newbury dictum examinatum 10 die aprilis 1600
...

Ad tertium articulum dicit et deponit that in the moneth of December articulat the weeke or daye certeinlie he cannot now remember as he sayeth, but as he verilie thinketh nere aboute christmas a fortnight before christmas last past, the articulat william Shawe, william white, Mathew Clercke, & this deponent having bin at one Mother Eltons house a drinckinge vntill it was betwene eight or nine of the clocke at night as they were comminge homeward the said william Shawe & william white called at the house of one Phillip holmes a musitian requestinge him ‸⸢yat he⸣ & his company wold playe some musicke before them to there houses, wherevpon the said Phillip holmes his companie not beinge within did take his cytheron & played before them, & as they went in the churchyard of Newbery, articulat they met the articulat Anthony dixen comminge with a lanthorne & a candle in it in the ‸⸢said⸣ churchyard in the path waye and as the said William Shawe came by the said Anthony dixen he did kicke with his foote the lanthorne ‸⸢in the said Anthony his hand⸣ in such sort that the lanthorne did fall a prety waie from him & the candle ‸⸢fell⸣ out of the lanthorne & the said william Shawe havinge so done he did eyther shoulder or strike the said Anthony dixen in such sorte that he ye ‸⸢said Anthonie⸣ did fall downe into the durte reddit rationem dicti sui for that he this deponent with one m of Newbery whose name he knoweth ‸⸢not⸣ did come talkinge together a little behind the said william Shawe & & william white & he did see the said william Shawe kicke the lanthorne out of the said Anthony | dixen his hand as aforesaid & did see the said william Shawe shoulder the said Anthony & also did see the said Anthony lyinge on the ground. Et aliter nescit deponere vt dicit savinge that there went close before the said william Shawe when he did kicke the lanthorne out of the hand of the said Anthony as aforesaid Phillip holmes playinge as a fore said vpon his citheron

...

Ad Interrogatoriam
Ad primum respondet quod Anthonium dixen circiter annum, et Willelmum Shawe circiter duos annos bene novit et noscit,
& that he liveth by his service and is little worth, & that he wisheth each partie a like not favouringe one side more then the other & ad reliquum respondet negative

Ad secundum respondet that the tyme of the night when william Shawe did kicke the lanthorne out of Anthony dixen his hand as afore said & when the said Anthony was shouldere & smitten to the grond as aforesaid was betwene viij or ix of the clocke at night & somewhat darcke videlicet so that one might discerne ‸⸢& know⸣ one ‸⸢ne man from another⸣ a quayts cast from him

...

Ad quartum respondet that the night was not so darcke but that one man meetinge an other might discerne & knowe him & the said dixen had at the same tyme a Lanthorne with a candle burninge givinge light in it et aliter respondet negative./

...

ff 117v–18 (Evidence of Philip Holmes of Newbury, musician)

...

Ad primum dicit et deponit that the articulat william Shawe is dwellinge in Newbery articulat reddit rationem dicti sui for he knoweth his dwellinge house very well.

...

Ad 3um articulum dicit et deponit that in one of the moneths articulatae & as he verily thinketh neere about iij weeks or a moneth before christmas last past the daye of the weeke he cannot now remember, william Shawe articulatae ; one mr white, Thomas Goodall & mathew Clercke, came to this deponents house ioyninge to the churchyard of Newbery requestinge him to come with his company & playe before them alonge the towne of Newbery, wherevpon he this deponent (his company not beinge at home) went him self with his cytheron (fearinge least the said mr white wold have done him or his insruments some hurte, yf he should denye him to goe for that he did sweare he wold breake his Insruments yf he wold not goe) and did playe before them, asnd as he this deponent did goe before them playinge, & the said mr white did holdeinge him by the shoulder in the churchyard of Newbery, he this deponent did mete the articulat Anthony dixen in the middle of the churchyard goinge toward his stable with a lanthorne & a candle burninge & givinge light in yt towards his stable, with provinder in his other hand for his horses the which Anthony as he passed by this deponent & mr white who went foremost sayingede vnto them, well said my maisters/ & assone as he came by william Shawe he this deponent did heare the said Anthony dixen his Lanthorne fall vpon the ground wherevpon he this deponent lookinge backe he this deponent & seinge the candle out & hearinge Anthony dixen vse bsome words vnto | the said william Shawe ‸⸢who was come past him⸣ presently the said Anthony dixen was beaten downe to the ground but whether the said william Shawe or who did beat him downe to the ground he cannot depose as he sayeth for that it was very darcke, & assone as he this deponent did heare the said Anthony dixen fall downe, he ranne vnto him to helpe him and at his comminge there was no body near by him but Thomas Goodall & Mathew Clercke comminge from him Et aliter nescit deponere vt dicit ad eundem articulum savinge that at the place where Anthony dixen was throwen downe there was sone william Gubbard goinge the same waye yat Anthony dixen went & at this deponents comminge to Anthony dixen to take him vp the said william Gubbard was standinge by him ffurther he this deponent sayeth that within half an houre after the said Anthony dixen was beaten downe as afore said in the churchyard of Newbery he this deponent did goe to the said Anthony dixes dore & said to his servants that william Shaw had stricken the said Anthony dixen & that yt greved him to see how ill he was vsed by the said Shawe & wished the said Anthony dixen to complayne to mr maior of him /

...

Ad Interrogatoriam

Ad primum respondet quod optat victoriam ius habentem & quod valet vj li. xiij s. iiij d. ere alieno deducto ad reliquum satisfactum est savinge that he denyth that he is anie waie allied or kine vnto the said Anthony dixen

Ad 2um respondet that the tyme when the said Anthony dixen had his lanthorne beaten out of his hand & when he was throwen downe to the ground was betwene viij or ix of the clock at night, the which night was so darcke that a man could not discerne without some light or knowe one man from another if he stode close by him almos ⸢iij or iiij yards from him⸣

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Ad 4um respondet that he & this respondent & mr white went quietly by the said Anthony dixen & so he this respondent thinketh william Shawe & the rest might have done alsoe et aliter nescit respondere vt dicit.

...

f 118v

Ad 6um respondet that he this respondent did heare one Mathew Godwin saye that Goodall specified in this Interrogatory did conffesse vnto him that he did Strike the said Anthony Dixen . in the churchyard the tyme aforesaid/

...

(Evidence of William Gubbard of Newbury, apprentice clothworker)

Willelmus Gubbard de Newbery in comitatu Berckeria clo prentice to a clothworker...

Ad primum dicit that william Shawe is dwellinge in Newbery. articulat redit rationem dicti sui for he this deponent knoweth his dwelling house very well dwellinge the next house vnto him

...

Ad tertium articulum dicit et deponit that aboute a moneth or iij weekes before christmas last past the daye certeinlie he cannot nowe remember . he this deponent beinge sent by his maister to his stable to give his horse meat for all the night, about ix of the clocke at night as he this deponent was goinge toward the church yard he sawe a man ⸢espied⸣ one goinge with a lanthorne & candle burninge before him whervpon he this depon..nt (the night beinge somewhat darcke) made hast to overtake him & so at the church stile of Newbery overtoke him & the said Anthony dixen goinge into the churchyard of Newbery with a lanthorne with in his hand & a candlle burninge in yt & as they went together in the said churchyard toward there stables in the middle of the churchyard nere the great dore on the North side of the church ther were comminge toward them Phillip holmes with playing vpon an instrument & william Shawe & Thomas Goodall & others whose names he doth not know comming following him/...

f 129v (4 June) (Evidence of Matthew Clercke)

Testes inducti ex parte Willelmi Shawe de et super articulis allegationum ex parte eiusdem contra Anthonium Dixen datis

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Ad secundum articulum alegationis primo date dicit et deponit that aboute a moneth or three weekes before Christmas last past he this deponent & the articulat william Shawe goinge close together in the churchyard of Newbery in a ‸⸢very⸣ darkke night betwene eight & nine of the clock, they met the articulat Anthony Dixen comminge toward them with a lantherne & a candall burninge in yt & as the said Anthony dixen came close by the said William Shawe the the said William did strike the lantherne ⸢fell⸣ out of the said Anthony dixen his hand with his foote ⸢by what meanes he this deponent knoweth not⸣ & so passed alonge by him one Phillip holmes a musician playinge before them vpon a Cytherin, and assone as they he this deponent & the said william Shawe were come to the churchyard stile of Newbery they stayed for one mr white & the articulat Thomas Goodall who came withc them into the churchyard aforesaid & went a little behinde them together/...

  • Footnotes
    • & &: dittography
    • articulatae: for articulate
    • articulatae: for articulate
    • insruments: for instruments
    • Insruments: for Instruments
    • downe ... him: the end of this article written in the margin
    • withc: for with
  • Record Translation

    ff 116v–17 (10 April) (Evidence of Thomas Goodall of Inkpen, Berkshire)

    Witnesses introduced on behalf of Anthony Dixen about and concerning the articles, chapters, or interrogatories, on their behalf, against a certain William Shawe of Newbury the said examinate, on the 10th day of April, 1600.

    ...

    To the third article he says and deposes (English). He gives a reason for his statement: (English). And otherwise he knows nothing to depose as he says (English).

    ...

    To the interrogatory:

    To the first he responds that he has known Anthony Dixen well for about a year, and William Shawe for about two years, and he recognizes (English) and to the remaining he responds in the negative.

    To the second he responds (English) that is to say (English). ...

    To the fourth he responds (English) and otherwise he responds in the negative.

    ff 117v–18 (Evidence of Philip Holmes of Newbury, musician)

    ...

    To the first he says and deposes (English). He gives a reason for his statement: (English).

    ...

    To the third article he says and deposes (English). And otherwise he knows nothing to depose as he says to this article (English).

    ...

    To the interrogatory:

    To the first he responds that he hopes justice has victory, and that he is worth £6 13s 4d, with debt deducted. Regarding the rest satisfaction has been made, (English).

    To the second he responds (English).

    ...

    To the fourth he responds (English), and otherwise he knows nothing to respond or say.

    ...

    f 118v

    To the sixth he responds (English).

    ...

    (Evidence of William Gubbard of Newbury, apprentice clothworker)

    William Gubbard of Newbury in the Berkshire court (English).

    ...

    To the first he says (English). He gives a reason for his statement: (English).

    ...

    To the third article he says and deposes (English)...

    f 129v (4 June) (Evidence of Matthew Clercke)

    Witness produced ex parte William Shawe in response to the articles of allegations given on his behalf against Anthony Dixen

    ...

    To the second article of the first allegation given he says and deposes (English)...

  • Glossed Terms
    • cytheron n cittern; cytherin
    • quayt n quoit, a ring thrown at a target for sport [OEDO quoit n 1, 2.a, 2.b]
    • alienus, -a, -um adj alien, of or pertaining to another; in phr alienum es another's money, ie, debt
    • berckeria, -e n f Berkshire
    • candall n candle
  • Endnote

    This complex case concerning an assault in the churchyard of the parish church of St Nicholas, Newbury, was heard by David Humphrey of Salisbury who signs with his mark below each of the depositions. The entire case takes up ff 116–33v of the Deposition Book. Only those parts of the testimony that refer to Philip Holmes actually playing his cithern are reproduced here.

    The affray is first described by Thomas Goodall of Inkpen. Goodall asserts in his testimony that William Shawe was the one who beat Anthony Dixen to the ground. Philip Holmes, the musician pressed into service to lead the drunken party home, declines to assert that it was Shawe since he was walking in front of the procession, although he admits he did go to Dixen's house and tell Dixen's servants that Shawe had beaten their master. The third witness is William Gubbard, a sixteen-year-old apprentice. He swears that it was Shawe who did it and, further, asserts under questioning that it was starlight and perfectly easy to distinguish one face from another. The fourth witness, however, Matthew Clercke, begins a long series of hearsay testimonies. He, and subsequently William Dudmarshe, cobbler, John Sparking, tapster of the George, and Matthew Godwin, musician, all testify that they had heard it said that Goodall himself had struck Dixen 'with his fist in such sort that his fist did then still ake' (f 129v). Goodall seems to have boasted his guilt in three separate public houses: the George, the Crowne, and the Rose. Clercke and Dudmarshe, when reexamined, expressed the view that they didn't know the right of it but that Goodall was a 'lewde fellow' (f 133), who 'wold rather forsweare himselfe then not' (f 133). The case against Shawe seems to have been dismissed.

    The testimony of young Gubbard proved a real problem for the court. Dudmarshe implies that he may have been open to a bribe from Goodall because he was 'a poore prentise and his friends are very pore people.' This distressed the rector, a Mr Coldwell, who, with the parish clerk, John Reves, checked young Gubbard's age and his record of communication. The record of Gubbard's baptism is in the Register of Marriages, Baptisms, and Burials, Newbury 1538–1634 (D/P 89/1/1, no foliation) for 3 March 1583/4.

    An interesting feature of the case is that Godwin signed his testimony on f 133 with a stave of music.

    The wills of only two of the participants in this small town drama have survived. Holmes made his will in 1636 and it was proved 19 September 1640. There is no mention in it of his being a musician. Shawe's will was made 13 July 1614 and proved 1 February 1614/15. His total assets (£37 14s) were outweighed by his liabilities (£50 16s 8d). His major debt (£27) was to an Oxfordshire merchant, Humphrey Taylor, for a plot of land.

    Matthew Clercke is identified as from Thame, Wiltshire. The location of Newbury would suggest someone from Wiltshire; however, there is now no Thame in Wiltshire, and it is unlikely to be Thame, Oxfordshire.

  • Document Description

    Record title: Archdeaconry of Berkshire Act Book
    Repository: BRO
    Shelfmark: D/A2/c40
    Repository location: Reading

    1597–1601; Latin and English; paper; ii + 250 + i; 292mm x 193mm; modern pencil foliation; bottom right-hand corner of leaves from f 199 torn away and repaired; title stamped on spine: 'LIBER | ACTORUM | 1597–1601 | Berks | c.40.'

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