The City of WESTMINSTER.60


seven Constables, five Commoners, to be Overseers of the said Hospital, privy to all Things in the House, both of receiving and laying out.

Then for the Works of such as should be taken into the House: That old Women, or middle Aged, that might work, and went a Gooding, should be Hatchilers of the Flax: And one Matron over them.

That common Hedges, and such-like lusty naughty Packs, should be set to Spinning: And one according to be set over them.

That Vagabonds, such as were stout, stubborn, and strong, should make clean the Streets; some to carry away with Wheelbarows, as the rest did fill them.

Among whom, if any chanced to be Taylors or Shoomakers, these to be likewise set to their Stitch, to work for the Houshold.

That young Springals, of whom might be good Hope hereafter, should learn to weave, by one of the Science: Who should have a Stipend, and be as Master to them

Likewise, that Children that were above Six, and not twelve Years of Age, should be set to winde Quills to the Weavers.

But what Issue and Effect this good Proposal had, I cannot tell. Many Years after, Gregory Fines Lord Dacre, and Anne his Wife, intended the Founding of an Hospital in Westminster; whereof I have seen a Draught of the Queen's Letters Patents for Allowance and Confirmation: To be founded for the good Education and Nurture of poor Children and Boys, born and to be born within the Parish of St. Margaret in the said City; and for the Relief and Nourishment of poor aged People, and lame and diseased Persons, and for the Correction and Restraint of sturdy Beggars, and idle Vagabonds within the City and Liberty, and Precinct of the same, and within the Parishes of St. Margaret's, St. Martin's in the Fields, the Savoy, and St. Clements Danes. That by this Means poor Children deprived of their Parents, being well educated and instructed, when they shall attain to elder Age, may learn honest Arts and Trades, whereby they may themselves live honestly, and get their own Living: And likewise, that infirm, aged People, weak, lame, and sick Persons, might want nothing necessary to their Life; and other being strong in their Limbs, might be compelled to Labours, and to honest and wholesome Works and Exercises; whereby they might maintain and cherish themselves and others, for the Profit and Benefit of the Commonweal, and not be permitted to live idly, and wander about the Streets and beg, to the great Offence and Trouble of the Nobles, honourable Persons, Justices, Judges, and Officers of the Queen and her other Subjects, frequently passing towards Westminster, and returning thence, as well in Time of Parliament, as of the Terms.

Lord Dacre intended the founding an Hospital.

This Hospital was in the Letters Patents to be called, The Hospital of Jesus, in the Parish of St. Margaret in Westminster. And was by Vertue thereof, to be governed by eight discreet and honest Men, who should be called, The Masters of the said Hospital of Jesus. The first Masters whereof to be nominated by the said Gregory Lord Dacre, and Anne his Wife, or their Executors, after the Foundation thereof. And the said Masters, and their Successors, to be one Body Corporate and Politic for ever, and to have a common Seal. And upon the Death of any of these eight, or Vacancy of any of their Places, the Survivors and those that remain, might nominate and elect others out of St. Margaret's Parish to succede: And upon their not so nominating and electing in six Months, the Dean of Westminster, to put in one or more fit Person or Persons.

That moreover the said Gregory Lord Dacre, and Anne his Wife, might make Statutes and Laws for the Government of the said Hospital, with the Consent of the Dean of Westminster, or Bishop of London. Four Acres of Land, besides Gardens and Orchards, allowed to be laid to the said Hospital; and the Value of five hundred Marks in Manours, Messuages, Lands, Tenements, Rectories, Tithes, or other Hereditaments, for the sustaining and Maintenance of it. This Hospital was founded in Totehill Fields, where it still is: But the present Use of it different from the Contents of these Letters Patents, as will be seen afterwards.

There belonged to the Inhabitants of Westminster divers peculiar Privileges and Liberties. Which one Thoms Bland, an Under-Sheriff, in the latter End of Queen Elizabeth's Reign invading, viz. 1593, Complaint was made thereof to the Lord Burghley, the High Steward. What those Liberties were, and what the Wrongs done thereunto were, the two or three following Papers will shew.

Liberties of Westminster.

J. S.

Articles objected against Thomas Bland, Under-Sherife of Middlesex, for Wronges done againste the Libertie of Westminster, 22 May, 1593.


"1. Item, That the said Undersherife refuseth to make Warrants upon Writts unto him directed, being thereunto required: Whereby the Baliffe is damnified, and the Plaintiff hindered."

"2. Item, That he resteth by himselfe and his Officers, in both Pallaces at Westminster."

" 3. Item, That he chardgeth Prisoners in the Gatehouse with Writts, the Prison being within the Libertie of Westminster, and wholly to the Use of the Officers there."

" 4. Item, That he removeth out of the same Prison by Writ of Habeas Corpus, Prisoners committed by the Baliffe."

" 5. Item, That upon a Capias ut lagat. he arresteth within the Libertie by special Baliffes, notwithstanding that the Graunt made and confirmed by her Majestie, to the Dean and Chapter of Westminster; wherein Authoritie is geven to the Baliffe, to execute and retorne all Bills, Warrants, Precepts, and Writts, although they concerne any Way the King's Person; and that it shall not be lawfull for any Steward, Marhsall, or Sheriffe, to enter, for any Cause, without Licence of the Officers for the Time being, as more at large appeareth on the Graunt."

And these are the Causes that he mainteyneth, and partly to be answered in the Common Place.

To the Right Honourable the Lord Burghley, Lord High Treasurer of England.

MAIE it please your good Lordship, to be informed, that Thomas Bland, now Deputie Sheriffe of the Countie of Middlesex, hath, within three Daies paste, called in Question, before the Judges of the Common Pleas, your Lordship's Authoritie within the Libertie of Westminster; and summoned me, as Deputie to your Lordship's Baliffe there, to hear and answer his Objestions; which I cannot do, without your Lordship's Pleasure therein knowne. And forasmuche as the like Enterprise hath not been done by any Undersheriffe that I can learne of, since her Majestie came to the Crowne; nor at any Time before, for the Space of one hundreth Yeres. It maie therefore please your Lordship, in respect