Colleges and Hospitals. Bridewel. 176

Colleges and Hospitals. Bridewel.

more, and to some less; (as also may particularly appear by a fair Book, wherein their Names are entred) Yearly 468l.

There is also given to the Lazar Houses adjoining to the City of London, to the intent they shall not beg within the same, nor within three Miles compass thereof, (except it be at their own Doors) to the great Annoyance of all such as have frequented the City in Term time, and at other Times and Places, 60l.

There is also paid in ordinary Fees, for the good Government of the said Houses, as followeth:

To an Hospitaller being a Priest, 10l.

To Five Surgeons, each of them 15l. Yearly, 75l.

To two Stewards, each of them 6l. 13s. 4d. 13l. 6s. 8d.

To two Butlers, each of them 6l. 12l.

To two Cooks, each of them 8l. 16l.

To Four Porters, each of them 6l. Yearly. 24l.

To a School-master, 15l.

To an Usher, 10l.

To two School-masters for the Petites, each of them 53s. 4d. 5l. 6s. 8d.

To School-masters for Writing, 3l. 6s. 8d.

To two Clarks, 20s.

To two Matrons, each of them 53s. 4d. 5l. 6s. 8d.

To Forty four Women, each of them 40s. a Piece. 88l.

To two Men that carry Wood and Coal, and to be charge of the same, 4l.

Thus may it appear, that the ordinary Charges of this new Erection, as before hath been particularly described, amounteth Yearly to 3290l. 5s. 4d.

Towards the Maintenance whereof there is collected by the Geste, [Chest, perhaps] and free Alms of the Citizens, as may appear in a fair Register, wherein is expressed the Ward, Parish, Name, and Sum, that every Person within the City gives hereunto, 2914l.

So that the ordinary Charges of these two Houses, is greater than the ordinary Alms that is given for the Maintenance of them, as may appear, &c. amounteth to 377l. 5s. 4d.

Towards the Discharge whereof there hath been given this Year by Legacies and other Gifts, by sundry charitable Persons, as may also particularly appear, 129l. 15s. 7d. ob.

So resteth to discharge the ordinary Expences, besides all manner of extraordinary Expences, Reparations, Furniture of necessary Implements; and many other Charges which certainly are very great, 247l. 9s. 8d. ob.

Which Sum hath been paid and disbursed by the Governors of the said Houses, out of their own Purses, which daily travel for the good Order of them, 247l. 9s. 8d. ob.

By the perusal of this Paper it appears, that not only such as were harboured within these Hospitals were taken care of, but such as were Objects of Charity abroad as poor Housekeepers, Alms Folks, in and about the City, were relieved also out of the Collections made for these Houses, according to the Discretion of the Governors.

There were also in the City many others of the poor necessitous Sort, that had neither House nor Harbour to put their Heads in, but were fain to lye abroad in the open Streets; and divers Families of other Poor fain to lye under one Roof. This did closely affect many good Citizens, and particularly Ridley, the good Bishop of London, who by some means was informed of it, and moved in it. And considering that Bridewell, an old decayed House of the Kings, situate in the City, being very large and capacious, might be extremely serviceable to this charitable Purpose, he endeavoured to find a Way to beg it of the King, especially at this time, when one was about buying it of the King to put it down, and convert it to his own Use. And for the compassing this, in the Month of May, this charitable Year 1552, he wrote a very pathetical Letter to Sir William Cecyl, Knt. the King's Secretary (whom he knew to be of a pious Disposition, as well as much about the King) having promised to the Citizens to move him in this Matter, because he took him for one (as he told him in his Letter) that feared God. His moving Letter ran to this Tenor:


"Good Mr. Cecyl, I must be a Suitor unto you in our Master Christs Cause. I beseech you be good unto him. The Matter is, Sir: Alas! he hath lien too too long abroad (as you do know) without Lodging in the Streets of London, both Hungry, Naked, and Cold. Now Thanks be unto Almighty God, the Citizens are willing to refresh him, and to give him both Meat, Drink, and Cloathing, and Firing, But alas! Sir, they lack Lodging for him. For in some one House, I dare say, they are fain to lodge three Families under one Roof. Sir, there is a wide, large, empty House of the Kings Majesty, called Bridewell, that would wonderfully well serve to lodge Christ in, if he might find such good Friends in the Court to procure in his Cause. Surely I have such a good Opinion in the Kings Majesty, that if Christ had such faithful and hearty Friends, that would heartily speak for him, he should undoubtedly speed at the Kings Majesties Hands. Sir, I have promised my Brethren, the Citizens, to move you, because I do take you for one that feareth God, and would that Christ should lye no more abroad in the Street."

Bishop Ridley's Suit for Bridewel.

Letter to Cecil;

He prayed him also for God's sake, that he would stop the Sale of this House, in case any were about buying of it, as he heard there was; and that he would speak in our Master's Cause. The said Bishop wrote also to Sir John Gates, another great Man at Court, about this Business more at large; and he joyned, he said, Cecyl with him, and all other that loved and looked for Christs final Benediction on the latter Day; meaning that in the Gospel, Come ye Blessed of my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the beginning of the World. For I was an hungry, &c. He also sent Instructions by the Bearer of this Letter to confer further with Cecyl in this Affair. So that that holy Martyr Ridley's Name must not be forgotten as a great Instrument in the procurement of Bridewell to the City.

And Sir John Gates.

Afterward this House being obtained to the City, it was employed for the Correction and Punishment of idle, vagrant People, and Strumpets, and for setting them to Work, that they might in an honest way take pains to get their own Livelihood.

Bridewell, for what Use.

And here I cannot omit to leave upon Record, to their eternal Honour, the Names of two good Maiors of London, Dobbs, and Barnes; the former a main Instrument of procuring the Foundation of this and the other Hospitals: The latter, of furthering the good Estate of them, whom in this most christianly affectionate manner, the beforesaid good Bishop of London, accosted in one of the Letters he writ out of Prison a little before his Death: "O Dobbs, Dobbs, Alderman, and Knight, thou in thy Year didst win my Heart for evermore, for that honourable Act, that most blessed Work of God, of the Erection and setting up of Christs Holy Hospitals, and truly Religious Houses, which by thee and through thee were begun. For thou like a Man of God, when the Matter was moved, [perhaps by himself, the Bishop] for Christs poor silly Members, to be holpen from extreme Misery, Hunger and Famine, thy Heart I say, was moved with Pity, and as Christs high honour-"

Dobbs and Barnes their good Deserts in furthering this Foundation.

Ridley's Letter to them.

Martyr's Letter.