The Order and Precedency of the COMPANIES.


THE 23d of Henry VIII. these Companies had Place at the Maior's Feast in the Guildhall, in order as followeth. I speak by Precedent; for I was never Feast-follower.

The Order and Precedency of the Companies.

COMPANIES.Numb. of each Company feasted.Messes alloted them.
1. Mercers. The
2. Grocers.164
3. Drapers.124
4. Fishmongers.124
5. Goldsmiths.103
6. Skinners.83
7. Merchant-Taylors.9 3
8. Vintoners.62
9. Ironmongers.44 1/2
10. Merchant Haberdashers.14 4 1/2
11. Salters.82 1/2
12. Dyers.62
13. Leathersellers.83
14. Pewterers.5 2
15. Cutlers.52
16. Armourers.31
17. Waxchandlers.62
18. Tallowchandlers.32
19. Sheremen. 52
20. Fullers.92
21. Sadlers.42
22. Brewers.124
23. Scriveners.62
24. Butchers.73
25. Bakers.42
26. Poultars.11
27. Stationers.21
28. Inholders.42
29. Girdlers.42
30. Chirurgeons. 21
31. Founders.11
32. Barbers.42
33. Clothing Upholders.21
34. Broiderers.21
35. Bowyers.21
36. Fletchers.21
37. No Clothing Turners.21
38. Cordwainers.42
39. Painters Stainers.52
40. Masons.11
41. Plummers.21
42. Carpenters.42
43. Pouchmakers.21
44. Joiners.21
45. Coopers.11
46. No Clothing Glasiers.21
47. No Clothing Linnen Drapers.21
48. No Clothing Woodmongers.21
49. Coriars.21
50. No Clothing Foistors.21
51. No Clothing Grey Tanners.21
52. Tilers.11
53. Weavers.11
54. Blacksmiths.01
55. No Clothing Lorimers.21
56. Spurriers.21
57. Wiresellers.11
58. No Clothing Fruiterers.21
59. No Clothing Ferrers.21
60. Bladesmiths.21

So that at the Feast of Richard Gresham this 23 Hen. VIII. which was Anno 1531, were, Messes of Meat, 111 1/2. And Guests of the Freemen entertained at Guildhall, 273. Besides the Wardens of each Company, reckoning two to each Company, 120. In all 393.]

Lord Maior's Feast 1531.

J. S.

These Companies severally at sundry times purchased the King's Favour and License by his Letters Patents, to associate themselves in Brotherhoods, with Master and Wardens, for their Government. Many also have procured Corporations, with Privileges, &c. But I read not of License by them procured for Liveries to be worn, but at their Governours Discretion to appoint, as occasion asketh, sometime in Triumphant manner, sometime more Mourning-like. And such Liveries have they taken upon them, as well before as since they were by License associated into Brotherhoods, or Corporations. For the first of these Companies that I read of to be a Guild, Brotherhood, or Fraternity in this City, were the Weavers, whose Guild was confirmed by Henry the Second. The next Fraternity, which was of St. John Baptist, time out of mind, called of Taylors, and Linnen Armourers of London, I find that King Edward I. in the 28th of his Reign, confirmed that Guild by the name of Taylors and Linnen Armourers; and gave to the Brethren thereof Authority yearly to choose unto them a Governour or Master, with Wardens, &c. The other Companies have since purchased License of Societies, Brotherhoods, or Corporations, in the Reigns of Edward III. Richard II. Henry IV. Henry V. Henry VI. Edward IV. &c.

The Companies obtained Licenses from the King to associate themselves for their Government.


Weavers the first Bortherhood.

Taylors the second, confirmed by the King.

Somewhat of LIVERIES worn by the Citizens of London in time of Triumphs, and otherways.


IN the Year 1236, 20 Henry III. the Maior, Aldermen, Sheriffs, and Citizens of London, rode out to meet the King, and his new Wife Queen Eleanor, Daughter to Reymond Berengarius of Aragon, Earl of Provence and Narbonne. The Citizens were cloathed in long Garments, embroidered about with Gold and Silk of divers Colours: Their Horses finely trapped, to the number of three hundred sixty; every Man bearing a Golden or Silver Cup in his hand: The King's Trumpets before them sounding, &c. as you may read in my Annals.

The Citizens ride out to meet K. Henry III. and his Queen. How habited;

Anno 1300, 29 Edward I. the said King took to Wife Margaret, Sister to Philip le Bew, King of France. They were married at Canterbury. The Queen was conveyed to London: Against whom the Citizens, to the number of six hundred, rode in one Livery of Red and White, with the Cognizance of their Mysteries embroidered upon their Sleeves. They received her four Miles out of London, and so conveyed her to Westminster.

And how, when they met K. Edward I. his Queen.

Anno 1415, 3 Henry V. The said King arriving at Dover, the Maior of London, with the Aldermen and Craftsmen riding in Red, with Hoods Red and White, met with the King at the Black Heath, coming from Eltham with his Prisoners out of France.

Meet K. Henry V. with his Prisoners from France.

Anno 1432, 10 Henry VI. He being Crowned in France, returning into England, came to Eltham towards London. And the Maior of London, John Welles, the Aldermen, with the Commonalty, rode against him on Horseback; the Maior in Crimson Velvet, a great Velvet Hat furred, a Girdle of Gold about his Middle, and a Bawdrike of Gold about his Neck, trilling down behind him: His three Henxemen on three great Coursers following him, in one Suit of Red, all spangled in Silver. Then the Aldermen in Gowns of Scarlet with Sanguine Hoods: And all the Commonalty of the City, cloathed in White Gowns and Scarlet Hoods, with divers Cognizances embroidered on their Sleeves, &c.

Meet Henry VI coming from France.

The Maior and Aldermen, how habited.

Anno 1485, 1 Henry VII. The Maior, Aldermen, Sheriffs and Commonalty, all Cloathed in Velvet (as in a mourning Colour) meet the King

Maior, &c. meet King Henry VII. at Shoreditch.