STRO: D(W)1721/1/4

ff 114–14v (Visit of James I)


Wee must not forgett to impresse within the facultie memoratiue, the remembrance of the presence of the greate monarch Iames the highe and mightye prince (within this poore Towne) whoe travellinge oute of this kingdome to see his other of Scotlande, did in his retorne looke vpon his poore Subiectes here, And to thende that his cominge hether should not be altogeather vnexpected; It pleased the Earle of pembrocke lord Chamberlen of his Maiesties houshould to appoint Mr Wannerton & Mr Suncockes twoe yeomen of the gard to repaire to this Towne the (blank) daye of (blank) to giue notice to Thomas Cradocke then Maior that his Maiestie in his retorne from Scotland the xxviijth daye of August being Thursdaye and in the xvth yeare of his maiesties Raigne, vpon the rececpte of which messuage Mr Maior called vnto him Edward Moreton, ffrancis Dorington, Thomas Worswicke and Arthure Hill (being of the Common Councell) to giue them intertainement which they accordingly did by bestowinge of them wyne and a banquett, besydes that the Maior sent vnto eyche of them a Iacobus peece for a gratificacion of theire happye messuage, manye daies passed not but that the Common Councell assembled them selues of purpose to conferre howe the busines of the entertayninge of his maiestie should be carryed which indeede was a woorke of the greatest importance that was within anye of theire memories, But yet nothinge was fullye concluded vpon, but lefte to the further Consideracion of euerye particuler man, whoe were with dewe regard to expostulate with them selues what provision and preparation was to be made, But as wee see in all states That plebs ferocior est ad rebellandum quam bellandum, and rather tentare quam tueri libertatem, Soe here in this busines the vulgar sorte would doe nothinge for the expedytinge of soe honorable an entertainement, which did not ryse oute of anye disloyalty towardes theire Soveraigne, | but meerely out of the politicall & mallicious indiscreet headdines of some fewe, whoe partlye to saue labour and expence and partlye for revenge gainst those which some three yeares afore that tyme had altered the governement by changinge the two Bayliffes into a maior, did impose all this busines vpon some fewe ... they finde that if in case when the kinge came to the Towne he should alight from his horse to see the shirehall, or that he should expect a banquett, or that he should be desyorous to see howe our Recordes were kept, then a greate defect would be founde in vs, for we could neyther shewe him anie place for our Recordes, neyther put him into any convenient place where he might be banquetted or repose him selfe if he had bine so disposed: And therefore forseeinge that it was matter of importance to be thus farre both furnished and prepared, They thought yt fittinge to erect a house for this purpose...

f 117v

...And aboute the 16th of Marche 1616 the Mason began the woorke in the market place, william Latner havinge laide downe threescore loade of stone procured gratis to be carryed by the Countrye at the request of Master Maior and his complices The first stone was laide by Edward Moreton and the rest of theyr Complices they brought morter tempered with greate store of burned sacke, there was musicke and much reioycinge, supposing that theire had bine peace in Israell This tryvmphe was made before the victorye was gotten ffor Iohn wilson vpon a Sundaye morninge goinge towardes the Church with master Maior and the rest of the Companye he proclaymed that the workemen should haue ill layinge of stone there, and Thomas Worswicke then tould him yt was to be built for the honor of the king and preservacion of his Recordes Then did wilson further make a publique prayer as he went toward the Church that some of them might not liue to finishe yt, addinge withall that he hoped the devill would cast his Clubbe over them before yt weare ended howe vncivillye these woordes by him weare spoaken, lett them Iudge whose breedinge is able to discearne what dewtye and obeydyence is dewe to a Soveraigne./

ff 121v–27v


Nowe lett vs laye downe the endevours of the vulgar sorte, for the Common Councell all agreede (except before excepted) to giue the best and most royalste entertaynement they can to theire dreade Soueraigne; master Maior being sure of theire readynes nowe forgett them; and falls to the remembrance of the rest of the Common people, to incyte them to repayre theire houses, paynte the forefrontes of them, sand theire streetes and to doe anye thinge els that might cause the kinge to take notice of theire loues and dutyes.

The Maior giues speciall warrant to William Latner one of the Chamberlens (for his fellowe Chamberlen ffrancis Dorington would doe nothinge) to see the northe gate repayred and beautifyed with the Armes of the Kingedome, and to see the waye and passage of the gate to be made wyder, (for it was a Causey not three yardes wyde and verye dangerous both for Coach and horse) as alsoe a barne which stoode close at the gate syde to be removed to the place where nowe it standes, and a garden place to be cast open and the pale removed to the place where nowe yt standeth, All which william Latner seriously performed and had not his fellowe ffrancis Dorington crossed him | the same had bine done with more expedicion; ffor he would not haue had Latner by anie meanes to haue removed the barne and pales, but said he did wronge to the widowe Wood whose barne yt was, ffrancis Dorington rayled vpon the woorkemen revyled Latner his fellowe callinge him both knaue and foole. yet William Latner encoraged by the Maior proceedes in adorninge ‸⸢all⸣ the gates of the Towne, with repare of the streetes and also with glasinge of the hall: But he did glase and repayre the hall and in faire cullours sett the kinges Armes therevpon by warrant from Sir Walter Chetwinde and Walter Bagott Esquior All these thinges being sett in forwardnes there was yet somethinge more to be done: It was thought fitt by the Common Councell of the towne assembled in their Councell that twoe of them should take paynes to ryde to Preston in Andernes beinge a Corporacion to take notice howe the kinge was there entertayned, and howe the Maior and Aldermen did carrye themselues before his maiestie The question was then which twoe should goe: the Common Councell put that service vpon Richard Dorington and ffrancis Dorington, because they had done nothinge, neyther were willinge to doe anye thinge towardes the entertayninge of the kinge. Richard Dorington he refused, for Age and ill will would not suffer him The other, ffrances Dorington made a shewe that he was willinge and therefore Arthure Hill was appoynted to keepe him companye. After a fewe dayes passing ouer, the tyme was drewn <..> that the Kinge should be at Preston, And aboute some foure dayes before, ffrancis Dorington came to Arthure Hill to see what tyme he would be ready, his Answeare was when yt pleased him, And I am readye sayeth ffrancis Dorington to goe, but I will haue mony in my purse to beare my charges ‸⸢Arther hill said the Maior would defraye all charges doubt not that⸣ yet neuertheles ffrancis Dorington (because he would be knowne to be constant in mutabilitye) tould Authure Hill that in truth his busines would not permitt him to goe, but he had gott mr Iohn wolsley to goe in his place. Ye marrye sir: this was his last tricke of perturbacion that he could putt vpon the Towne. The Maior then perceivinge howe vnhonestlye he was dealt with all, spared that charge, and was content with some feare to carrye him selfe as God should guide him, and to take vppe vpon report anye thinge that ffame should sende vnto him touchinge the behauiour of Preston Corporation |

These thinges thus passing ouer, all the inhabitantes of the Towne framed them selues and theire houses to all seemelynes onelye Richard Dorington and ffrancis Dorington whoe in the vewe of the world did not bestowe of them selues or of their house on pennye extraordinarye. But william Moye, Richard Drakeford and Thomas worswicke weare of an other opinion, and thought in this busines experience would proue a good master. And therefore vpon the same said anilye that daye the kinge came to Nauntwich they three posted thether and were there seaven or eight howers before the king came thether; where they purchased acquaintance of the gentlemen vshers & pages of the Chaumber, knightes and gentlemen of the Querrye whoe familliarlye in the kinges house before his maiesties cominge did relate the kinges intertaynement throughout his whole progress, Advysinge them howe the Maior should present him selfe, and his guifte how the aldermen, and Common Councell should ranke them selues, with other informacons which were there dulye expressed apprehended by them./

By that tyme they had thus discourst the kinge came to his lodginge at Nauntwich, soe that they could not staye anie longer or further conference, yet the gentlemen vshers gaue a speciall note vnto them, that they should that night repayre to Gerald Bromley where they should fynde mr Gosnell one of the gentlemen vshers whose turne was to wayte at Stafford, and that yt was verye necessarye that they should acquainte him with the busines; Awaye goe they from Nauntwich (it beinge sixe of the Clocke at night) to the lord Gerardes, where they finde mr Gosnell, to whome they mixte theire busines, and from whome they receiue an Informacion that saued the Towne fiftye poundes. ffor at Nauntwich they had vnderstandinge that in most places where his maiestie had bine in state he was eyther feasted or banquetted. Mr Gosnell delatinge of our estate, and consideringe that his maiestie did take noe greate pleasure with banquettes perswaded them to forbeare the same, except they would bestowe a matter of ffiftye poundes in some greate & publique place for the kinge the nobillitye and followers./ |

They weare easelye resolued by mr Gosnell Councell whoe, was very kinde vnto them, and promised that he would be with master Maior three or foure howers before the kinge should come to the Towne both to knowe master Maior & to see the guifte, as alsoe to advyse with him touchinge his and others carredge in the kinges presence Soe they partinge with him about midnight tooke theire horses and at a little house gotte roume to lodge in a barne that night, and put theire horses to adventure. The daye before the king came mr. harres one of the gentlemen vshers being to wayte at Whorecrosse tooke the Towne in his waye of purpose to see master Maior and to advise with him, three or foure howres before the king came. Sir Robert Osborne and mr. Gosnell they came and gaue theire direccions, and vewed all thinges, and gaue very good encoragement to our proseedinges. The speciall matter which is lefte vnspoaken of, and wherof much trouble did aryse was touchinge the oratour for the Towne: The Maior therefore directed his letters to Robert Aston Esquior an auncient Barrester and Recorder of the Towne, hereby intimatinge vnto him, that the kinge was shortlye to come in state throughe the Towne and that yt was expected, that he should prepare a speech, to pronounce before his maiestie: wherevnto he Answeared, that althoughe he were Recorder, yet to make a speech before the kinge did not appertaine to him, nether did yt belonge to the place of the Recorder, besydes he was ould and vnweldy, and could not vse such gesture of his bodye as would be expected, wherevpon yt was generally supposed that hee ment to surrender his place. By meanes whereof some speeches secret weare had (amongest the best sorte) touchinge a new Recorder. In the choyse whereof (althoughe the better sorte had agreede well in all other thinges) yet herein they did differ. Some of them havinge a desyer to haue Sir Walter Chetwind to haue the place as a man most convenient for that purpose, both because he dwelt verye neare vnto, was a greate and carefull states man for the Countrye and had euer loued the Towne well; An other sorte wished the place to mr Richard Dyott, the rather for that he had marryed here in Towne, the daughter of Richard Dorington which would be an occasion both of placinge him selfe here, as alsoe plant plantinge his loue amongest vs, and that he would would be the more readyer to advise vs in matters of Lawe, because he was ver ‸⸢lately⸣ called to the barre, & was a verye hopefull gentleman. But | an other sorte had a stronge conceipt to make Mathewe Cradocke Recorder in hope he would come & liue in the Towne but especially & cheefelye, to take the Israell Edge of ffrancis Dorington of, whoe euer sithence he was called to be of the Common Councell, had much disturbed the state of the Towne, as is formerlye declared. And for that there neuer had bine anie good likinge betwixte them, yet Mathewe Cradocke having the place, might haue power to contest with him, and by that meanes, both the gouernement of the Towne, Ordinances, and the newe erected malt mill might be setled. But whilst all these thinges were in proiecting mr Aston mente nothinge lesse then resigninge of his place, And therefore to extinguishe these differences, he wrote his letter to master Maior, That althoughe he could not supplye the place him selfe, yet he had assigned Richard weston Esquire a Counsaylour at Lawe to supplye that place, and that the Towne would ioyne with him by their letters to intreate mr weston to vndertake the same, which was done accordingly & mr Weston vpon the receipt of the said letters repayred to master Maior, from whome he receiued his direccions for his speech Vpon the daye before the kinge came to Towne, mr weston late at night came to Towne, and imparted to the Maior and his Complices to what ende his speech tended, but yt was not Answerable which in very truthe was very exceedinge well pende, but yet was not answerable to that which the Maior and his Complices would haue done, ffor they conceived that yt was both a little too tedious, as alsoe had attributed over much glorie to the house of Stafford Castle, as thoughe all the present good of the towne had descended from them. Vpon these consideracions mr d<..>ye mr weston altered the whole course of his intended speech, and framed the same very oratoricallie and trulye to our owne fashion as hereafter shalbe laide downe. And nowe returne we backe to meete the kinge. The next daye beinge Thursdaye, the kinge was to come throughe the Towne: Greate preparacion was made, the Sande spread abroad the streetes the houses garnished with flowers, the ayre filled with sweete perfumes, and the tenne Aldermen in theire ffoynes, the rest | of the Common Councell in theire gownes and very faire suites. And by the waie I must remember, that some fortnight before the kinge came, The Maior and his complices findinge agreate backwardnes in some of the better sorte for the entertayninge of the kinge; The did deuise to call vnto them tenne of the most sufficient burgesses to treate with them to this purpose (videlicet) that they should euerye of them make them agowne, and afaire suite against the kinges cominge, to thende that they might attende the Maior, which would be much for the creditt and reputacion of the Towne: And for the better effectinge of this busines, they gaue notice at least to Sixteene of the better sorte of the Burgesses, of their intencion, but especiallye to the Walthors and Lees being men of good fashion, and of agreater name within the Towne, and soe manie in nomber, that vntill the newe gouermenent was a fote, they and their ffreindes by the multiplicitye of theire voyces made Officers whome they pleased, and soe by consequence were maisters over all Israell But the pride of theire hartes was to highe, and theire true natures of too vehement a churlishnes, for wante of true civill beedi breedinge, whereof none of them euer tasted, that none of them would yeilde herevnto, but as it maye be supposed, rather wished some disgrace to followe the Towne then otherwaies. ffor the varie tenth truthe is, this proiect was properlie for the Walthors and Lees to the ende that they beinge in this busines made choice men, yt might happelye haue allaied the rancor of theire inveterate mallice, which an Age cannot rubbe out. But for soe much as they would not stoope to this baite, yet others were elected to that purpose, and were men in estate both answerable to the Walthors and Lees, and of farre better iudegement & vnterstandinge, whoe beinge called to this place fashioned them selues to the direccion of the Maior and his Complices And did take a sollemne oath to be aydinge and assistinge to the maior and Common Councell of this Towne And therefore they are and well and worthylie maye be for euer called the Assistances of the Comon Counsell Here let me remember to incert the instruccions mr worswicke gaue to mr weston for the substance of his speech (videlicet) Most gracious soueraigne vnto the greate Comaunder of all kinges, we bende the knees of our hartes and render to his divine maiestye all possible thankes, that yt hath pleased him to put into your royall handes hart to vouchsafe to cast your eyes vpon | this your maiesties poore & auncient burroughe of Stafford The first church therein beinge dedicated to Almighty God by Bertelinus minorum gentium diuus the walls and gates thereof erected by Elfrda duchesse of mercia the Towne encorporated by kinge Iohn, the markett place made glorious, by the aspect of your maiesties renowned Auncestor Henry Earle of Richmonde whoe reposed him selfe here one night before the greate battaile of Bosworth, and further made famous by the moste virtuous and godlie prince Edward 6. whoe herein erected afree schoole, and agreater glorie added vnto yt by the presence of Queene Elizabeth whoe in augmentacion of the Church and Schoole encreased the revenews To all which graces and fauours yt hath pleased your maiestie vnder your highnes greate Seale of England to giue affirmacion, and for the greater glorie to Almightye God honor vnto your highnes Crowne and greater worth vnto this Borough by your maiesties patent to establishe a newe goverment over the same by composinge of a Maior twoe Iustices tenne Aldermen and tenne Cheefe burgesses, by the same pattent enablinge vs to keepe a Court of Record and to beare this mace as the ensigne of your maiesties presence at altimes within our liberties and nowe to inrich vs with your highnes presence All which we doe acknowledge to proceede from the fountaine of your Maiesties loue & trust And therefore to manifest your highnes soueraigne power we doe here surrender vp our Charter resigne our mace acknowledge our Aucthority, to be at your maiesties pleasure And withall wee doe here present vnto your maiestie the mite of a poore widdowe which doth but import that our selues and all that wee possesse even to our liues to be at the Comaund of our most dreade & soueraigne Lorde Iames by the grace of God kinge of greate Brittaine whome God preserve longe to continue over vs Amen.

But nowe lett vs retyre to Thursdaye morninge & expect the kinges cominge whoe laye all night at Bromley at the Lord Gerrardes house, and therefore was expected in the Towne aboute one or twoe of the Clocke And nowe vnderstandinge that Sir Robert Osborne ‸⸢and the gentlemen vshers and other Officers⸣ attendinge his maiestie in state did (accordinge to theire promisses formerlie made) | some ffoure or ffyve howers before the kinge came <.> repared to the Towne conferred with the Maior and his Complices and did see the guift was to be presented to his maiestie tooke notice of all of vs, howe we were apparelled, instructed vs for the place most convenient for the meetinge of the kinge, which they thought to be most fittest in the market place. But yet he informed vs that it was our partes to meete the kinge at the Confynes of our liberties. And therefore Sir Robert Osborne would ryde imediatlye to the Kinge to know his pleasure therein And for that the waie and weather was very foule the kinge was well pleased to keepe his Coache till he came vnder the Northe gate of the Towne, where his maiestie stood longe in regard of the continuall rayne that then fell makinge yt knowne vnto his nobillitye then present with him, that hee did of purpose staie a faire blast that he might the better survaye the Towne: Whilest the kinge thus staied for faire weather the Earle of Arundell to hould some discourse with the kinge, lookinge vpon the gate, and behouldinge the walls of the Towne, tould his maiestie that he was of opinion that the Towne was a very auncient Towne, to whome the Kinge presently replyed, That could not be, ffor saith the Kinge it is but three yeares sithence we made them a Maior Towne, for before that tyme they could not send 2 Burgesses to the Parliament, but were onlye governed by Bayliffes. But herein was an errour, ffor althoughe the Kinge noe doubt, had eyther enquired, or oute of his reading had taken some notice of the Towne, yet his maiesties Recordes will perpetuallie shewe that euer sithens the Towne was encorporated, that yt hath vsually sent forthe Burgesses to the parliament The heavens began then to tell the kinge they wilbe cleare, his maiestie beinge vnder the gate out of his Coach, and mounted vpon his horse of state, and caused the Earle of Essex whoe was highe Steward of the Towne to ryde vpon an other of his horses of state with his plume vppe, and to carrye the sworde before him. And soe the nobillitye Bushoppes Officers and Trumpetters euerye one ranckinge them selues in theire places, marched a longe and made the streetes glorious by the happie aspect of his Maiestie. The sounde of the Trumpettes gave the Maior the Common Councell and the Assistantes sommons that his maiestie was nere at hande: But as his cominge was not vnexpected Soe alsoe the Maior & common Councell & the Assistantes were not vnfurnished, but all in readynes to giue him intertainement | ffor that morninge they had prepared in the middle of the markett place a scaffould halfe a foote in height made in the forme of a triangle rayled in wherevpon was placed in the fore parte a Table covered with a Carpett of broad greene cloath hanginge downe to the grounde and fringed with naples silke and in the middle of the same the Armes of all the kingdomes richlye embroydered, And of eyther syde the kinges Armes, were the Armes of the Towne richlie embroydered There was alsoe prepared one greate Chaire with a backe havinge thereon the Armes of the Towne richlye embroydered, twoe other backe Chaires somethinge lesser richly embroydered with the Armes of the Towne, and foure other buffett stooles richlye embroydered vpon the seate with Stafford knottes intermingled, and all fringed with greene silke And all provyded of purpose for the entertayninge of his maiestie, vpon this scaffold stoode the Maior Common Councell and Assistantes In the middle of the Table stood a guilt cupp an ell in height duble guilt and very richlie and curiouslie wrought by the gouldsmith The markett place beinge fullye replenished with spectators All windowes and casementes aboute the markett place beinge taken downe and in theire places was manie a faire face putt oute The Kinge cominge into the markett place cast his euerye waie, turning his horse aboute to behoulde the prettye scite thereof, sayinge (that manie might here him) that he was come into little London, Then castinge his eye towardes the scaffold he directlie road vp to the Maior, whoe vpon his knee with the rest of the Common Councell and assistantes prayed God to blesse his maiestie The Maior kissed the mace & deliuered it vpp to his maiestie whoe havinge receiued the same did verelye verye seriouslie observe the forme thereof for it was in outward shewe as faire a mace as anie the kinge had then carryed before him, yt had all the Armes & Coates of the kingdome richlie wrought vpon the gloabe yt was of that beautye and seemed to be of that worth; That ffrancis Dorington had given forth | diuers times that yt w<..> to bigge, and that the kinge would take exceptions to yt, But thankes be to God that scrupple of Conscience is removed: ffor the kinge did most graciouslie giue the same backe againe to the Maior, enablinge him thereby as yt were then by an actuall possession both to carrye that mace and to exercise his former Aucthoritye./

The Maior havinge thus receiued the mace; then did mr Weston on his knee deliuer a speeche vnto the kinge which speech (by reason of the alteracion thereof over night as you haue heard) seemed not to be a premeditated speech, but rather a resolued speech of the present Accidentes which he had founde and heard of in that instant; that is to saye, the discourse the Nobillity had with the kinge at the gate, touchinge the Antiquitye of the Towne, as alsoe a kinde of distraccion in our gouernement which he had founde over night amongest the Maiors owne Complices, which caused him not to binde him selfe to anie kinde of sett speech And therefore mr Weston beinge not able to deliuer in wrytinge what he had pronounced to the Kinge, yet as neare as I can the effect thereof I shall sett downe althoughe not in soe good termes Hee first declared vnto his maiestie, That since out of his princelie care to knowe his kingdomes and to be knowne vnto his people yt had pleased his maiestie to vndertake soe longe a pilgrimage, that his poore subiectes whome he nowe vouchsafed to visitt, did thinke yt fitt to tell his maiestie, what they weare and whence they came, wherein (saith hee) they will not deale like a newe vpstart gentree, whoe to seeme discended of a worthy race eyther Change theire names for better, or buy of the heralldes longe Pettygrees, but that they did freelie acknowledge, that of manie persons, they were first made one bodye by Kinge Iohn and by him encorporated by the name of Bayliffes, and burgesses, They Bayliffes twoe the Burgesses indefinite, In which state yt continewed vntill about three yeares since; but like the successe of an vnsounde bodye, whose ill disposed humours are neyther cured nor corrected; soe the Statebodye of the said Towne befoure yt came to be foure hundred yeares of Age, by the multiplicitye of ingrowen members was becomen a monster: ffor euerie ffreeman eyther by birth or bought with monye, havinge an equall voice in the choosinge of theire Bayliffes, and the greater nomber, beinge of the worser sort (as it is in all populer eleccions) such were made governours as eyther were followers or fauorers of vices And that hence grewe impuritye, the deludinge of lawe and the scorne of governement, The said mr weston further added, That | yt had pleased his maiestie <.>o newe make this Corporacion & that it nowe consisted of one Maior Tenne Aldermen & Tenne cheefe Burgesses, And that by the guift of this greate tytle, his maiestie had added to theire honour by changeinge the Eleccion of theire Officer to ffewe and theire governement to one, and that three yeares experience nowe past, had given assertance of a perpetuall blessinge And further mr weston declared vnto the kinge, That manie that had receiued favours (havinge theire turnes served) did turne theire backes vpon theire benefactors beinge either too proude to acknowledge theire debte or vnwillinge to make requitall But saith mr weston Theire lodgeth noe such vnthankefullnes in the wals of this Towne, ffor here the people come all forthe with Ioy to meete your maiestie whome they well knowe & acknowledg<.> theire leidge Lord and kinge, They confesse (saithe he) that they are your maiesties creatures and that your maiestie was most exceedinge welcome to the true hartes of all your loyall subiectes And that it was a Custome amongest them to giue pledges of theire loue At which woordes mr weston puttinge his hande towardes the Cuppe, said further as followeth This they offer and humblie craue acceptance, for it is onelie that which must make yt worthye requitall, but they haue none vntill they haue begged it. Here the Maior deliuered vpp the Cuppe vnto his maiestie whoe very observantlye looked vpon the same, and All behoulders might both witnes and take notice that his maiestie made gracious acceptance of the same. ffor as he held the Cuppe in his hande he apparentlye smyled, puttinge his hande vp to his hatt & stirring the same, as an ‸⸢in⸣ vnfallible toaken of the Townes true loue, and loyall obeydience. This Cuppe his maiestie forth with deliuered to his gentleman vsher mr Gosnell And presently therevpon mr weston proceedes to conclude his whole speech to this effecte followinge. God (saith he) hath inriched your Maiestie with guiftes fitt to be his vicegerent. We praye vnto the kinge of giu kinges to giue vnto your person health and longe life, to your gouernement peace & plentye and when the earth shalbe vnworthie longer to enioy you, in heaven there to receiue a rewarde, on earth the memorie of a good kinge, & Davides blessing to your succession: Att which woordes the Maior Comon Councell and Assistantes with loude voyces prayed God blesse your maiestie./ |

Then the Maior by the Appointment of Sir Robert Osborne tooke horse and vpon his footecloath bearinge the mace vpon his necke he rode in his place as he was assigned before the Kinge attended of eyther syde him with twoe Sergeantes of the lesser maces; The weather nowe began to be foule, and the skye loured as beinge loath that his maiestie should departe from soe true and lovinge Subiectes, But the rayne fallinge yt was an occasion, that as his maiestie tooke horse of state vnder the North gate, soe here his maiestie was by vnseasonable weather enforced to take his Coach vnder the East gate. The Kinge had noe sooner taken his Coach, But one of the gentlemen vshers gaue notice to mr Maior that he should alight, and take his leaue of his maiestie which he did accordinglie And the Lord of Essex seeinge the maiors intencion, did very honorablie present the maior to the kinge And his maiestie takinge notice of him, thanked him for his kinde entertaynement, and gaue him his hand to kisse./

And it is further to be remembred That mr weston, the Aldermen, Common Councell of the Towne, & theire Asistantes weare already at the East gate to attende the Maior home to his owne house, but the thronge beinge extreme they had noe passage to shewe them selues: ffor after the Kinge was parted ⸢<..><.> from the Maior. The Maior had noe roume to passe by reason of the Coaches, vntill such tyme as Sir Robert Osborne oute of his respectiue care he had of the Townes men; did enforce a free passage. Soe the Maior retyred him selfe a horsbacke havinge the Mace go carryed before him by William Worswicke as specially chosen for that purpose onelie his twoe Sergeantes attending his stirrup, behinde diuers Commoners nex before him was mr weston, and the twoe Iustices before them, the Aldermen euerie one in their rancke (except Richard Dorington whoe was generallie supposed to absent him selfe in regard his gowne was not sutable to the rest of the Aldermen) nexte before the Aldermen, the cheefe Burgesses rancked them selues, and before them the Tenne Assistante Burgesses, and before them the loude musicke, and before the musicke thirtye Halberdyers, whoe all of them with much Ioye conducted the Maior to his house, whoe for a reward entertayned them with plentye of wyne and beare But lett it be remembred, that whilest mr weston was pronouncinge of the speech before the kinge, & had taken occasion to compare the bodye pollitique in former times to a naturall bodye that was vnsounde and full of ill disposed humors, hereat Iames Wilson (whose mallice towardes the newe gouernement is eternall) said that therein mr Weston spoake vntruthe, and that he would iustefye, & subscribe yt with his hande./ | his speech was verie vntrue, and withoute sence not being nor neuer wilbe able to direct a state pollitique therefore, for this his iudiciall Ignorance, he shalbe forborne to be blamed was witt was onelie trulie tryed in mockeinge the Tenne cheefe Burgesses to severre them selues from the rest of the Common Counsell (theire entire fellowes) by the settinge forth of a Pageant of fflatt Cappes which weare abolished twoe yeares before the Conquerours greate Grandfather was borne./


f 131v (28 August) (Fees to royal servants during the king's visit)


To the gentlemen vshers daylie wayters iij li. vj s. viij d.
To the Seriauntes at Armes iij li. vj s. viij d.
To the vshers quarter wayters xx s.
To the Shewers of the Chamber xx s.
To the Yeoman vshers xx s.
To the groomes and pages xx s.
To the Trompetters xl s.
To the ffootemen xl s.
To the Porters at the gate xx s.
To the knight harvenger iij li. vj s. viij d.
To the ffowre yomen of the mouthe xl s.
To the yeoman of the ffeilde x s.
To the waye maker xx s.
To the yoman vsher for bringinge the sword to the Lord Lieutenant vj s. viij d.
To the Coachman x s.

Somma totalis xxiij li. vj s. viij d.

These sommes aboue written were receiued of mee by Edward Bristoe one of the Groomes of his maiestes Chamber, and Acquittance give therefore as maye appeare vnder his owne hande

Paid more the Knight Marshals ffee, as maye appear vnder the hand of Richard harries one the gentlemen vshers xx s.
Paid more for the gentlemen harbingers fee, as maye appeare vnder the handes of John Burnell Richard harris & Roger Thorpe (blank)
Paid more in ffees to Sir Robert Osborne for the stirrippe & Querry as maye appeare vnder his hand vij li.
  • Footnotes
    • rececpte: for receipte or recepte
    • plebs ... bellandum: written in italic script; 'the common people are keener to revolt than to wage war'; cp Livy, Ab Urbe Condita 7.27
    • tentare ... libertatem: written in italic script; 'attack than defend liberty'; cp Livy, Ab Urbe Condita 6.18
    • Church: St Mary's or St Chad's
    • informacons: for informacions; abbreviation mark missing
    • lord Gerardes: Thomas Gerard was lord president of the Council in the Marches of Wales from 1616–17)
    • Walthors: written in italic script
    • Lees: written in italic script
    • Walthors: written in italic script
    • Lees: written in italic script
    • Walthors: written in italic script
    • Lees: written in italic script
    • the Assistances ... Counsell: written in italic script
    • Bertelinus ... diuus: 'Bertelinus, saint of the lesser peoples'
    • Elfrda: for Elfrida
    • the Earle of Arundell: written in italic script
    • his: likely for his eye
    • w<..>: top of sheet damaged
    • <.>o: top of sheet damaged
    • acknowledg<.>: final letter lost in gutter
    • We: Wwritten over Th(?)
    • nex: for nexte
    • Assistante: final e written over abbreviation mark for es
    • was: for whose(?)
  • Glossed Terms
    • glase v inf glaze, to furnish with glass; glasinge vb n
    • anilye adv only
    • querry n quarry, hunt; querrye
    • foynes n pl fines, fine clothing
    • Bertelinus, -i n m St Bettelin (dates unknown), patron of Stafford
    • blast n in phr staie a faire blast to remain somewhere for a long period of time (?)
    • bushoppe n bishop
    • scite n sight
    • pettygree n pedigree
    • statebodye n comp state body, the collective population of a town, city, state, etc; especially that portion of the population involved in its government [OEDO body n 13.a]
    • ingrowen members n phr pl residents, as of a town
    • assertance n assertance n assurance, certainty
    • flatt cappe n phr flat-cap, one who wears a flat cap; perhaps here an apprentice (?) [OEDO flat-cap n 2]
    • wayters n pl wages (?)
    • shewer of the chamber n phr attendant responsible for guiding or conducting people to the Great Chamber, Presence Chamber, or other chamber for audience [OEDO show v 16]
    • harvenger n in phr knight harvenger knight harbinger, a title given to one responsible for purveying lodgings for an army, royal procession, etc, or for setting up a campground
    • yomen of the mouthe n pl household officials, servants, or attendants charged with maintaining a pantry, or with providing or serving food and drink [OEDO yeoman n C3.a]
    • yeoman of the feilde n a household official, servant, or attendant; specific duties are unknown
    • stirrippe n stirrup
  • Endnote

    An antiquarian copy of these accounts for the king's visit is found in Bodl.: Ashmole 857, no 134, ff 308–9.

  • Document Description

    Record title: Thomas Worswicke's Book
    Repository: STRO
    Shelfmark: D(W)1721/1/4
    Repository location: Stafford

    Thomas Worswicke was steward to Edward Stafford, 13th Baron Stafford, town clerk of Stafford, and eventually (c 1625) mayor of Stafford. His reasons for keeping copies of town records and other documents remain unclear, as are the dates of these collections. The first ff 1–64 contain Stafford family pedigrees and other items; with second foliation begins Thomas Worswicke's collections of Stafford records for 1603–4, together with diary accounts of his activities in Stafford affairs.

    1603–23; English; paper; v + 64 + 201 + v; 420mm x 260mm; modern pencil foliation 1–64, early ink foliation 1–178 follows pencil foliation (ff 92–8, 133 missing, ff 178–201 possibly unfoliated, or perhaps lost because of wear at top corner); bound in full brown calf (19th century) with brass studs and closures, title on spine: 'Stafford Manuscripts Pedigrees of the House of Stafford Stafford Town Record & Account.'

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