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Christs Church. St. Bartholomews, &c. 175

Christs Church. St. Bartholomews, &c.
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Christ Hospitall
  Christ Hospitall ]

" whatsoever, shall be entred of Record, and from henceforth be put in due Execution from time to time according to the true meaning of the same." This was Printed in a little Book in the time of Mr. Goodfellow, Town Clerk. But now to take a View of these Hospitals, and the rest of these charitable Houses distinctly.

For this Book see the Appendix.

The Gray Fryars within Newgate, and St. Bartholomews Hospital, belonging antiently to the Priory of St. Bartholomews hard by, together with St. Nicholas and St. Ewen, two neighbouring Parishes, were obtained by the City of K. Henry VIII. in the 38th Year of his Reign: All which that King granted to the City for the relieving and succouring of their Poor; one of the last good Acts that King did before his Death. And in the beginning of January, (in the latter End of which Month K. Henry dyed) Ridley, Bishop of Rochester, declared at St. Pauls Cross this Gift of the King before the People, and his charitable End therein.

Christs Hospital.

St. Bartholomews.

The King did in the same Year, grant the City the Hospital of Bethlehem or Bedlam. He also then founded two Churches out of those two Religious Houses, the one to be called Christs Church out of the Gray Fryars, and the other Little St. Bartholomews out of the Hospital of that Name, with competent Salaries, for the respective Vicars and Ministers.

Bethlehem Hospital.

And as the King had founded Churches on these Places, so according to that his Grant, it lay upon the City to establish here a standing Provision for the Poor. And accordingly, some part of the Scite of the Gray Fryars they purposed for a large Hospital for poor Fatherless Children, here to be decently maintained and piously brought up, and fitted for Trades and Callings. But it was not before 5 or 6 Years after the Kings Grant, viz. Anno 1552, the Lord Maior and Citizens fell upon the reparation and fitting up of the Fryars for the Reception of the Children. And they effected it the same Year, and called it Christ Church Hospital, so that in the Months of September they took in near 400 Orphans, and cloathed them in Russet, but ever after they wore Blue Cloath Coats, whence it is commonly called the Blew Coat Hospital. Their Habit being now a long Coat of Blue warm Cloth, close to the Arms and the Body, hanging loose to their Heels, girt about their Waste, with a red Leather Girdle buckled; a loose Petticoat underneath of Yellow Cloth, a round thrum Cap tyed with a red Band, Yellow Stockings, and Black Low heeled Shoes, their Hair cut close, their Locks short.

Christ Church Hospital, for Children, when founded.

Their Habit.

There was one Act of Benevolence of K. Edward exprest to this Hospital of his Founding, that was somewhat remarkable. Which was his granting hereunto all the Church Linnen formerly used in the publick Religious Worship in the Churches of London: For the King having appointed Commissioners to take a view of all the Goods belonging to the Churches in and about London, great Quantities of Linnen Vestures and Cloath were found in the same, and more a great deal than there was need of now in the Celebration of the Reformed Divine Worship. Wherefore the King wrote to Ridley Bishop of london, one of his said Commissioners, and a great Instrument of this Foundation: "That towards the Relief of those poor Orphans and others, charitably brought and gathered together by his loving Subjects the Citizens to his new Hospital of Christ Church, the same Linnen should be delivered to the Governors for their Use, thinking as he added, that any Thing therein bestowed, to be to the Relief and Sustentation of the Temple of God, who inhabited in those poor People. Yet leaving to every Church necessary Linnen Vesture, as should serve to the publick Use and Ministry within the said Churches, according to the present Usage."

Church Linnen given to the Hospital.

Regist. Ridley.

But there were other miserable Objects of Poverty in the City besides poor Orphans, namely the Poor, Sick, and Lame. For the Reception of such, to have Lodging, Food, Physick, and Tendance, the City appropriated their Hospital of St. Bartholomew, as also St. Thomas Hospital in Southwark. Which together with the Borough they had lately purchased of King Edward VI. for a considerable Sum of Money.

St. Bartholomew.

St. Thomas

What Monies were raised by the noble Christian Benevolence of the Cititzens, upon K. Edward's Encouragement; what large Expences were laid out; and what Condition those Hospitals were already come in in the Year 1553, the last Year of that Prince, may be observed from a Paper I have met with in one of the most valuable Manuscript Libraries in England, as to that of Christ Church, and that other of St. Thomas: Which Paper seems to have been drawn up for the satisfaction of the said King, and was as follows:

The State of Christ Church, and St. Thomas Hospitals, Anno 1553, MSS. Archiep. Parker, CCCC.

A true and short Declaration of the State and Charge of the new Erected Hospitals in the City of London, Anno Dom. 1553.


"The whole Benevolence granted of all the Citizens of London, toward the Erection of two Houses; that is to say, of St. Thomas and Christs Hospitals. And may most plainly appear in a fair Book, wherein the Parish, Ward, Name, Surname, and Sum, that every Person gave thereunto, is expressed, and amounteth unto 2476l."

Libr. CCCC. Miscell. G.

The Charges of the Erection of those two Houses, and the Furniture of them, as by most plain Accounts may appear doth amount to 2479l. 10s. 10d.

So is the Charge greater than the Benevolence 3l. 10d.

There is received into Christs Hospital of Fatherless and helpless Children the Number of 380.

And in St. Thomas's Hospital of Aged, Sore, and Sick Persons, 260.

And there is relieved in divers Parishes within the City of London, of poor decayed Householders, with certain Pensions, and remain still in their Houses, the Number of 500 Persons.

So that the whole Number that is relieved by this Means is 1140 Persons.

There are daily lodged and fed in Chirsts Hospital 260 Children, and in St. Thomas's Hospital 260 Persons. And to every one is allowed daily, for their Meat, Bread and Drink, 2d. Which amounteth Monthly to 126l. Yearly to 1638l.

There is also paid in the Country for nourishing of an 100 Children at 10d. the Week one with another, which amounteth Monthly to 16l. 13s. 4d. Yearly to 216l. 3s. 4d.

The board Wages for Forty two Keepers of the same Children, and aged People in both the Houses, with their Washers; that is, to every 15 Persons one Keeper; and every Keeper hath 16d. the Week; and two Matrons 18d. the Week, each of them, which amounteth Monthly to 12l. 17s. 4d. Yearly to 177l. 5s. 4d.

The Apparel to all the said Persons, that is to say, Sheets, Shirts, Coats, Caps, Hosen, Shoes, Paper Books, Ink, which sometimes is more, and sometimes less: but by the Precedent of this Year, as may appear by plain Account amounteth to 180l.

There is also spent ordinarily in both the said Houses in Fewel, that is to say, in Wood and Coal, (as also by the Account thereof will appear) as much as amounteth Yearly to 260l.

There is also given to decayed Householders, or in sundry Parishes in the City of London, to some


© hriOnline, 2007
The Stuart London Project, Humanities Research Institute, The University of Sheffield,
34 Gell Street, Sheffield, S3 7QY