Imágenes de páginas



hefore the same justice; then is the recognition made either before some such justice, or before and value, signed with the handwriting of that the said doctor, that the lands, comprised in the justice, carried by the cursitor in chancery for writ, be not worth above forty shillings by the that shire where those lands do lie, and by him year, to be taken. And albeit now here can be is a writ of covenant thereupon drawn and no composition, since the queen is to have no fine engrossed in parchment; which, having the same at all for unfinable writs, yet doth the doctor envalue endorsed on the backside thereof, is brought, dorse his name, and cause the youngest, or third together with the same paper that doth warrant clerk, both to make entry of the writ into a third it, into this office; and there first the doctor, con- book, purposely kept for those only writs, and ferring together the paper and the writ, endorseth also to endorse it thus, finis nullus. That done, his name upon that writ, close underneath the it receiveth the names of the deputies, endorsed value thereof; then, forasmuch as the valuation as before, and so passeth hence to the custos brevium thereof is already made, that writ is delivered to as the rest. Upon every docket for license of the receiver, who taketh the sum of money that alienation, or warrant for pardon of alienation, the is due, after the rate of that yearly value, and party is likewise at liberty either to compound endorseth the payment thereof upon the same writ with the deputies, or to make affidavit touching accordingly: this done, the same writ is brought the yearly value; which being known once and to the second clerk, who entereih it into a several set down, the doctor subscribeth his name, the book, kept only for final writs of covenant, to- receiver taketh the money after the due rate and gether with the yearly value, and the rate of the proportion; the second clerk entereth the docket money paid, with the name of the party that made or warrant into the book that is proper for them, the affidavit, and the justice that took it: and at and for the writs of entry, with a notice also, the foot of that writ maketh a secret mark of his whether it passeth by oath or by composition; said entry: lastly, that writ is delivered to the then do the deputies sign it with their hands, and deputies, who seeing that all the premises be so it is conveyed to the deputy of Mr. Bacon, orderly performed, do also endorse their own clerk of the licenses, whose charge it is to procure names upon the same writ, for testimony of the the hand of the lord chancellor, and consequently money received. Thus passeth it from this office the great seal for every such license or pardon. to the custos brevium, from him to the queen's There yet remaineth untouched the silver, then to the chirographer to be engrossed, order that is for the mean profits; for upon for ferture and so to be proclaimed in the court. But if no which also there is an agreement made affidavit be already made touching the value, then here when it is discovered that any alienation is the writ of covenant brought first to the depu- hath been made of lands holden in chief, without ties, ready drawn and engrossed; and then is the the queen's license; and albeit that in the other value made either by composition had with them cases, one whole year's profit be commonly without any oath, or else by oath taken before the payable upon such a pardon, yet, where the doctor; if by composition, then one of the depu- alienation is made by devise in a last will only, ties setteth down the yearly value, so agreed the third part of these profits is there demandable. upon, at the foot of the backside of the writ; by special provision thereof made in the statute of which value the doctor causeth one of the clerks 34 H. VIII. c. 5, but yet every way the to write on the top of the backside of the writ, yearly profits of the lands so aliened as the cursitor did in the former, and after that without license, and lost even from the time of the doctor endorseth his own name underneath it, the writ of scire facias, or inquisition thereupon and so passeth it through the hands of the re- returned into the Exchequer, until the time that ceiver, of the clerk that maketh the entry, and of the party shall come hither to sue forth his charter the deputies, as the former writ did. But if the of pardon for that offence. valuation be made by oath taken before the doctor, In which part the subject hath in time gained then causeth he the clerk to endorse that value double ease of two weighty burdens, that in accordingly, and then also subscribeth he his former ages did grievously press him; the one name as before; and so the writ taketh the same before the institution of this office, and the other course through the office that the others had. sithence; for in ancient time, and of right, as it

And this is the order for writs of is adjudged 46 E. III. Fitzh. forfait 18, the mean covenant that be finable: the like profits were precisely answered after the rate and

whereof was at the first observed, in proportion per diem, even from the time of the the passing of writs of entry of lands holden in alienation made. Again, whereas, before the rechief; saving that they be entered into another ceipt of them in this office, they were assessed by book, especially appointed for them, and for the affidavit from the time of the inquisition found, licenses and pardons of alienations; and the like or scire facias returned, now not so much at any is now severally done with the writs of entry of time as the one-half, and many times not thu lands not so holden: which writs of covenant or sixth part of them is exacted. Here, therefore, entry not finable, thus it is done : an affidavit is . above the rest, is great necessity to show favour

34 H. 8, c. 5.

Proceeding upon writs of enliy.

Policy for


The chief clerk.

and merciful dealing ; because it many times hap- at the least, and sometimes twice so much, before peneth, that either through the remote dwelling he could find the means to be delivered. of the party froin the lands, or by the negligence Thus have I run through the whole or evil practice of under-sheriffs and their bailiffs, order of this practice, in the open time asciding car the owner hath incurred the forfeiture of eight or of the term ; and that the more partiten years' whole profits of his lands, before he cularly and at full, to the end that thereby these cometh to the knowledge of the process that run- things ensuing might the more fully appear, and neth against him; other times an alienation made plainly bewray themselves: first, that this present without license is discovered when the present manner of exercising of this office hath so many owner of the lands is altogether ignorant that his testimonies, interchangeable warrants. and counlands be holden in chief at all: other times, also, ter-rolments, whereof each, running through the some man concludeth himself to have such a hands and resting in the power of so many several tenure by his own suing forth of a special writ of persons, is sufficient to argue and convince all manlivery, or by causeless procuring a license, or par- ner of falsehood; so as, with a general conspiracy don, for his alienation, when in truth the lands be of all those offices together, it is almost impossible not either holden at all of her majesty, or not to contrive any deceit therein: a right ancient and holden in chief, but by a mean tenure in soccage, sound policy, whereupon both the order of the or by knight's service at the most. In which accounts in the Exchequer, and of the affairs of cases, and the like, if the extremity should be her majesty's own household, are so grounded rigorously urged and taken, especially where the and built, that the infection of an evil mind in years be many, the party should be driven to his some one or twain, cannot do any great harm, utter overthrow, to make half a purchase, or more, unless the rest of the company be also poisoned of his own proper land and living.

by their contagion. And, surely, as Cicero said, About the discovery of the tenure in Nullum est tam desperatum collegium, in quo non

chief, following of process for such unus e multis sit sana mente præditus. Secondlyalienation made, as also about the calling upon that here is great use both of discretion, learning, sheriffs for their accounts, and the bringing in of and integrity; of discretion, I say, for examining parties by seisure of their lands, therefore the first the degrees of favour, which ought to Inequality of and principal clerk in this office, of whom I had be imparted diversely, and for discern- ratei jus ifabile not before any cause to speak, is chiefly and in a ing the valuations of lands, not in one place or

manner wholly occupied and set on shire, but in each county and corner of the realm;

work. Now, if it do at any time hap- and that not of one sort or quality, but of every is terroie pen, as, notwithstanding the best en- kind, nature, and degree: for a taste whereof, and

deavour, it may and doth happen, that to the end that all due quality of rates be not the process, howsoever colourably awarded, hath suddenly charged with infidelity, and condemned not hit the very mark whereat it was directed, but for corruption; it is note-worthy, that favour is haply calleth upon some man who is not of right here sometimes right worthily bestowed, not only to be charged with the tenure in chief, that is ob- in a general regard of the person, by which every jected against; then is he, upon oath and other man ought to bave a good pennyworth of his own, good evidence, to receive his discharge under the but more especially also and with much distinchands of the deputies, but with a quousque, and tion: for a peer of the realm, a coun

The perros. with salvo jure dominæ. Usage and deceivable sellor of state, a judge of the land, an manner of awarding process cannot be avoided, officer that laboureth in furtherance of the tenure, especially where a man, having in some one or poor person, are not, as I think, to be measured place both lands holden in chief, and other lands by the common yard, but by the pole of special not so holden, alieneth the laws not holden: grace and dispensation. Such as served in the seeing that it cannot appear by record nor wars, have been permitted, by many statutes, to otherwise, without the express declaration and alien their lands of this tenure, without suing out evidences of the party himself, whether they of any license. All those of the chancery have be the same lands that be holden, or others. claimed and taken the privilege to pass their And, therefore, albeit the party grieved thereby writs without fine; and yet, therefore, do still may have some reason to complain of an untrue look to be easily fined; yea, the favourites in charge, yet may he not well call it an unjust court, and as many as serve the queen in ordivexation; but ought rather to look upon that ease, nary, take it unkindly if they have not more than which in this kind of proceeding he hath found, market measure. where, besides his labour, he is not to expend Again, the consideration of the place

The plase. above two-and twenty shillings in the whole or county where the lands do lie, may charge, in comparison of that toil, cost, and care, justly cause the rate or valuation to be the more which he in the case was wont to sustain by the or less; for as the writs too commonly report the writ of certiorari in the Exchequer ; wherein, be- land by numbers of acres, and as it is allowable, sides all his labour, it did cost him fifty shillings for the eschewing of some dangers, tha: those

The discharge of him that holdeth not in chief when he



1 E. 3., c. 12,

The manner of tha! Asurance.

numbers do exceed the very content and true which no yearly rent is reserved; or to grant a quantity of the lands themselves; so in some reversion, or remainder, expectant upon a lease, counties they are not much acquainted with ad- or estate, that yieldeth no rent Sometimes the measurement by acre; and thereby, for the most land is given in niortgage only, with full inten. part, the writs of those shires and counties do tion to be redeemed within one year, six months, contain twice or thrice so many acres more than or a lesser time. Many assurances do also pass the land hath. In some places the lands do lie to godly and charitable uses alone; and it hapopen in common fields, and be not so valuable as peneth not seldom, that, to avoid the yearly oath, if they were enclosed; and not only in one and for averment of the continuance of some estate the same shire, but also within the selfsame lord- for life, which is eigne, and not subject to forship, parish, or hamlet, lands have their divers feiture, for the alienation that cometh after it, the degrees of value, through the diversity of their party will offer to sue a pardon uncompelled befertility or barrenness: wherein how great odds fore the time; in all which some mitigation of the and variety there is, he shall soonest find, that uttermost value may well and worthily be offered, will examine it by his own skill in whatsoever the rather for that the statute, 1 E. III. place that he knoweth best.

c. 12, willeth, that in this service geneMoreover, some lands be more chargeable than rally a reasonable fine shall be taken. others are, respecting either the tenure, as knight's Lastly, error, misclaim, and forget- Error and misservice, and the tenure in chief, or in regard of fulness do now and then become suit- taking. defence against the sea and great rivers; as forors for some remission of extreme rigour : for I their lying near to the borders of the realm, or have sundry times observed, that an assurance, because of great and continual purveyances that being passed through for a competent fine, hath are made upon them, or such like.

come back again by reason of some oversight, And in some counties, as, namely, westward, and the party hath voluntarily repassed it within their yearly rents, by which most commonly their a while after. Sometimes the attorney, or follower value to her majesty is accounted, are not to this of the cause, unskilfully thrusteth into the writ, day improved at all, the landlords making no less both the uttermost quantity, or more, of the land, gain by fines and incomes, than there is raised in and the full rent also that is given for it; or else other places by enhancement of rents.

setteth down an entierty, where but a moiety, a The manner and sorts of the convey third or fourth part only was to be passed; or

ance of the land itself is likewise va. causeth a bargain and sale to be enrolled, when riable, and therefore deserveth a diverse considera- nothing passed thereby, because a fine had transtion and value : for in a pardon one whole year's ferred the land before; or else enrolleth it within value, together with the mean rates thereof, is the six months; whereas, before the end of those due to be paid; which ought therefore to be more months, the land was brought home to the first favourably assessed, than where but a third part owner, by repayment of the money for which it of one year's rent, as in a license or writ of entry, was engaged. In which and many other like or where only a tenth part, as in a writ of cove-cases, the client will rather choose to give a nant, is to be demanded.

moderate fine for the alienation so recharged, A license also and a pardon are to pass the than to undertake a costly plea in the Exchequer, charges of the great seal, to the which the bar- for reformation of that which was done amiss. gain and sale, the fine and recovery are not sub- I take it for a venial fault also to vouchsafe a ject. Sometimes, upon one only alienation and pardon, after the rate and proportion of a license, change, the purchaser is to pass both license, io him that without fraud or evil mind hath fine, and recovery, and is for this multiplicity of slipped a term or two months, by forgetting to payments more to be favoured, than he which purchase his license. bringeth but one single pay for all his assurance. Much more could I say concerning this unbla

Moreover, it is very often seen that the same mable inequality of fines and rates; but as I meant land suffereth sundry transmutations of owners only to give an essay thereof, so, not doubting but within one term, or other small compass of time; that this may stand, both for the satisfaction of by which return much profit cometh to her ma such as be indifferent, and for the discharge of us jesty, though the party feel of some favour in that be put in trust with the service, wherein no

doubt a good discretion and dexterity ought to be Neither is it of small moment in this used, I resort to the place where I left, affirming

part, to behold to what end the convey that there is in this employment of ours great use ances of land be delivered ; seeing that some of good learning also, as well to distinguish the times it is only to establish the lands in the hands manifold sorts of tenures and estates; to make of the owner and his posterity, without any construction of grants, conveyances, and wills. alienation and change of possession to be made: and to sound the validity of inquisitions, liveries, sometimes a fine is levied only to make good a licenses, and pardons; as also to decipher the lease for years, or to pass an estate for life, upon manifold slights and subtleties that are daily




that doing.

The end of convtyauct's.


offered to defraud her majesty in this her most an- the shipwreck of conscience, and with the irrecocient and due prerogative, and finally to handle verable loss of their honesty and credit; and, many other matters, which this purpose will not therefore, since it appeareth which way each of permit me to recount at large.

these hath his reward, let us also examine that Lastly, here is need, as I said, of integrity increase of benefit and gain, which is brought to throughout the whole labour and practice, as with her majesty by the invention of this office. out the which both the former learning and discre- At the end of Hilary term, 1589, being the last tion are no better than armata nequitia, and no- open term of the lease of these profits granted to the thing else but detestable craft and double villainy. late Earl of Leicester, which also was to expire at

And now, as you have seen that these clerks the feast of the Annunciation of the blessed Virgin want not their full task of labour during the time Mary, 1590, then shortly to ensue; the officers above of the open term, so is there for them whereupon remembered thought it, for good causes, their duto be occupied in the vacation also.

ties to exhibit to the said right honourable the For whereas alienations of lands, holden by the lord treasurer a special declaration of the yearly tenure of prerogative, be continually made, and profits of these finances, paid into the hanaper that by many and divers ways, whereof all are during every of the six years before the beginning not, at the first, to be found of record ; and yet for of the demise thereof made to that earl, conferred the most part do come to be recorded in the end : with the profits thereof that had been yearly taken the clerks of this office do, in the time of the vaca- during the last six years before the determination tion, repair to the rolls and records, as well of the of the lease. By which it plainly appeared, that Chancery and King's Bench, as of the Common in all those first six years, next before the demise, Pleas and Exchequer, whence they extract notes there had been raised only 12,7981. 15s. 7d. ob.; not only of inquisitions, common recoveries, and and in these last six years of the demise the full indentures of bargains and sales, that cannot but sum of 32,1601. 4s. 10d. qu.; and so in all 19,362). be of record, but also of such feoffments, ex- 2s. 2d. ob. qu. more in these last, than in those changes, gifts by will, and indentures of cove- former six years. But because it may be said, nants to raise uses of lands holden in chief, as are that all this increase redounded to the gain of the first made in the country without matter of record, fermor only, I must add, that during all the time and come at the length to be found by office or of the demise, he answered 300l. rent, of yearly inquisition, that is of record; all which are digest-increase, above all that profit of 2,1331. 2s. 7. qu., ed into apt books, and are then sent to the remem- which had been yearly and casually made in the brancer of the lord treasurer in the Exchequer, to sixteen years one with another next before: the the end that he may make and send out processes which, in the time of fourteen years, for so long upon them, as he doth upon the extracts of the these profits have been demised by three several final concords of such lands, which the clerk of leases, did bring 4,2007. to her majesty's coffers. the fines doth convey unto him.

I say yearly; which may seem strange, that a Thus it is plain, that this new order by many casual and thereby uncertain profit should yearly degrees excelleth the former usage; as also for the be all one; but indeed such was the wondrous present advancement of her majesty's commodity, handling thereof, that the profit was yearly neither and for the future profit which must ensue by such more nor less to her majesty, howsoever it might discovery of tenures as were concealed before, by casually be more or less to him that did receive awakening of such as had taken a long sleep, and it. For the writs of covenant answered year by by reviving a great many that were more than year 1,1521. 168. 8d., the licenses and pardons half dead.

9341. 3s. 11d. qu., and the mean rates 46). 2s.; in The fees or allowances, that are termly given all 2,1331, 2s. 7d., qu., without increase or dimi. to these deputies, receiver, and clerks, for recom- nution. pense of these their pains, I do purposely preter- Moreover, whereas her majesty did, after the mit; because they be not certain, but arbitrary, at death of the earl, buy of the countess, being his the good pleasure of those honourable persons that executrix, the remnant of the last term of three have the dispensation of the same: how beit, hi- years in those profits, whereof there were only therto each deputy and the receiver hath received then six terms, that is, about one year and a hall, twenty pounds for his travel in each term, only to come, paying for it the sum of 3,000). her the doctor hath not allowance of any sum in gross, majesty did clearly gain by that bargain the sum but is altogether paid in petty fees, by the party of 1,1731. 158. 8d. ob. above the said 3,000/. above or suitor; and the clerks are partly rewarded by the rent of 3,649). 133. 10d. ob. qu. proportionably that mean also, for their entries, discharges, and due for that time, and above all fees and other some other writings, besides that termly fee which reprises. Neither hath the benefit of this increase they are allowed.

to her majesty been contained within the bounds But if the deputies take one penny of this small office, but hath swelled over the

besides their known allowance, they banks thereof, and displayed itself apparently, as buy it at the dearest price that may be; I mean well in the hanaper, by the fees of the great seal.


which yielding 20s. 4d. towards her majesty for ing of common recoveries, either not holden of her every license and pardon, was estimated to advan- majesty at all, or but partly holden in chief; and tage her highness during those fourteen years, the not doubting to improve her majesty's revenue sum of 3,7211. 6s. ob. qu. more than without that therein, and that without loss to any, either pridemise she was like to have found. As also in vate person or public officer, if the same might be the court of wards and liveries, and in the Exche- managed by them jointly with the rest whereof quer itself: where, by reason of the tenures in they had the charge; they found, by search in the chief revived through the only labours of these hanaper, that the fruits of those writs of entry had officers, both the sums for respect of homage be not, one year with another, in the ten years next increased, and the profits of wardships, primer before, exceeded 4001. by the year. Whereupon seisins, ouster le maine, and liveries, cannot but they took hold of the occasion then present, for be much advanced. And so her majesty's self the renewing of the lease of the former profits; hath, in this particular, gained the full sum of and moved the lord treasurer, and Sir John For. 8,7361. 55. 5d. ob. qu., not comprising those pro- tescue, under treasurer and chancellor of the Exfits in the Exchequer and court of wards, the very chequer, to join the same in one and the same certainty whereof lieth not in the knowledge of demise, and to yield unto her majesty 5001. by these officers, nor accounting any part of that year therefor; which is 1001. yearly of increase. great benefit which the earl and his executrix The which desire being by them recommended to have made by the demises: which, one year with her majesty, it liked her forth with to include the another, during all the thirteen years and a half, I same, and all the former demised profits, within suppose to have been 2,2631. or thereabouts; and one entire lease, for seven years, to begin at the so in all about 27,1581. above all his costs and said feast of the Annunciation, 1597, under the expenses. The which, albeit I do here report yearly rent of 2,9331. 23. 73. qu. Since which only for the justification of the service in this time hitherto, I mean to the end of Michaelmas place; yet who cannot but see withal, how much term, 1598, not only the proportion of the said the royal revenues might be advanced, if but the increased 1007., but almost of one other 100). also, like good endeavours were showed for her majesty hath been answered to her majesty's coffers, for in the rest of her finances, as have been found in those recoveries so drawn into the demise now this office for the commodity of this one subject ? continuing.

The views of all which matter being presented Thus I have opened both the first plotting, the to the most wise and princely consideration of her especial practice, and the consequent profit arising majesty, she was pleased to demise these profits by these officers; and now if I should be deand fines for other five years, to begin at the feast manded, whether this increase of profit were of the Annunciation, 1590, in the thirty-second likely to stand without fall, or to be yet amended year of her reign, for the yearly rent formerly or made more? I would answer, that if some few reserved upon the leases of the earl; within the things were provided, and some others prevented, compass of which five years, expired at the An- it is probable enough in mine own opinion, that nunciation, 1595, there was advanced to her ma- the profit should rather receive accession than jesty's benefit, by this service, the whole sum of decay. 13,013. 14s. ld. qu. beyond the ancient yearly The things that I wish to be provided are these: revenues, which, before any lease, were usually first, that by the diligence of these officers, assisted made of these finances. To which, if there be with such other as can bring good help thereunto, added 5,700.. for the gain given to her majesty by a general and careful collection be made of all the the yearly receipt of 3001. in rent, from the first tenures in chief; and that the sanie be digested demise to the earl, until the time of his death, by way of alphabet into apt volumes, for every together with the sum of 1,1731. 158. 8d. ob., part, or shire, of the realm. Then that every clearly won in those six terms bought of the office, or inquisition, that findeth any tenure in countess; then the whole commodity, from the chief, shall express the true quantities of the lands first institution of this office, till the end of these so holden, even as in ancient time it was wont to last five years expired at the Annunciation, 1595, be done by way of admeasurement, after the manshall appear to be 19,8871. 9s. 9d. ob. qu. To the ner of a perfect extent or survey; whereby all the which sum also if 28,5501. 15s. 6d. ob. qu., which parts of the tenancy in chief may be wholly the earl and the countess levied hereby, be like- brought to light, howsoever in process of time it wise adjoined, then the whole profit taken in these hath been, or shall be torn and dismembered. For nineteen years, that is, from the first lease, to the prevention, I wish likewise, first, that some good end of the last, for her majesty, the earl, and the means were devised for the restraint of making countess, will amount unto 48,4381. 58. 4d. This these inordinate and covinous leases of lands, labour hitherto thus luckily succeeding, the depu- holden in chief, for hundreds or thousands or ties in this office finding by daily proof, that it years, now grown so bold, that they dare show was wearisome to the subject to travel to divers themselves in fines, levied upon the open stage of places, and through sundry hands, for the pursu. the Common Pleas; by which one man taketh

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