Quarter Sessions Records


f 141 (1 July)


The Iury for our sovereigne Lord the king vpon their oathes present Richard Darrell of Kirkby misperton Alehouskeeper for entertayninge & receiuynge into his house vpon a sabaoth day in December last and in time of evening prayer divers persons being no travalers and withall had in his house a piper named Henry ffoster being no inhabitant there but a wanderer, and suffered the said Piper to escape and did not apprehend him and carrie him to the Constable according to the Statute in that behalf made & provided &c.

  • Marginalia
    • °Richard Darrell
    • °ponit se in misericordia Curie et finis inde xs soluta pauperibus eiusdem parochie°

      [Footnote: ponit … parochie: 'he puts himself at the mercy of the court and therefore a fine of 10s paid to the poor of his parish']

  • Footnotes
    • ponit … parochie: 'he puts himself at the mercy of the court and therefore a fine of 10s paid to the poor of his parish'
  • Document Description

    Record title: Quarter Sessions Records
    Repository: NYCRO
    Shelfmark: QSM 2/2
    Repository location: Northallerton

    Itinerant performers in the North Riding ranged from individual pipers, fiddlers, jugglers, and others living close to or below the poverty line, to organized companies of travelling players. Most of these did not play under gentry patronage and so were vulnerable to arrest and punishment under the Elizabethan and Stuart poor laws governing 'rogues, vagabonds, and sturdy beggars' (see the Introduction and 39 Eliz c4; Great Britain, Statutes of the Realm, vol 4, pt 2 (London, 1819; rpt 1963), 899–902). When these companies were apprehended, the court normally recorded not only the names of all the members but also prosecuted those who provided lodging and performance space for them, allowing us to map their touring routes. The Simpson company of Egton (North Riding) appeared before the court on several occasions (see the Quarter Session Records). These appearances give us considerable information on their local organization. Notably, however, Gouthwaite Hall – the site of their best-known performance on 2 February 1608/9 – was in the West Riding until 1974, when the county boundaries were redrawn. That performance brought their host, Sir John Yorke, before the court of Star Chamber; the documentation of that case will appear in the forthcoming Yorkshire West Riding collection. Documents presented here concern the local organization of the company, with special reference to the position of boy players.

    17 April 1610–12 January 1615/16; English and Latin; paper; iv + 254 + iv ; 300mm x 180mm; contemporary foliation 1–221 (ff [4, 6, 12, 19, 22, 27–33] blank, ff 216–21 also blank); contemporary calfskin binding, 2 leather labels on spine, upper red, lower black, with gold lettering, respectively 'Minutes | and | Orders' and '1610 | to | 1615.'

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