Court of Star Chamber:
Mark Erington, William Fenwicke v Reginald Heron, Gilbert Swinburne et al 32 Eliz
Transcript: Dave King
Bill of Complaint of Marke Erington:
To the Quenes moste excellent Ma[jestie]
In moste humble manner shewe unto yo[u]r Maiestie your highnes faithfull and obedient subiectes Marke Erington of Poultland [Ponteland] in the Countie of Northumberland gent and Willm Fenwicke of Blagdon in the saide Countie of North[umberland] gent That whereas the Right honorable Henrye Earle of North[umberland] was lawfullie seised in his demesne as of Fee or of some other good and sufficient estate in the Lawe yet enduringe of and in all and singular the Tythe Corne of Harlowe in the said Countie of Northumb[erland] and the issewes and profitts thereof yerely growinge and renewinge for diverse yeres by the hands of his Farmors and Tenants hathe p[er]ceived and taken And so beinge seised by his Comissioners being Lawfully aucthorized in that behalf at or about the feaste of St Martyn the Bishoppe in Wynter in the xxxjth yere of yo[u]r Ma[jes]ties Raigne did in Consideracon of a great some of monye by yo[u]r said subiects unto the saide Earle paide amongeste othere thinges demise grannt and to fearme Lett unto yo[u]r saide Subiects all that his saide Tythe Corne in Harlowe to have and to holde the same unto yo[u]r saide Subiects from thenceforwarde unto the feaste of St Martin the Bishoppe in Wynter then next and imediatlye insewinge by force whereof yo[u]r saide sub[jec]ts were and are intytuled to have all the saide Tythe Corne duringe the saide yere then and there growinge and renewinge But nowe so it is if it maye please your highnes that at or about the xviijth daie of October laste and at diverse othere tymes before and after one Reignalde Heron Gilbert Swynburne Edwarde Marshall Ouswolde Heron John Robson Andrewe Yelrett [blank] Pickeringe and div[er]se othere to the nomber of Fortie p[er]sonns or thereabouts to yo[u]r saide sub[jec]tes as yet unknowen not regardinge yo[u]r ma[jes]ties Lawes nor Statutes did unlawfully assemble themselves together att or uppon Harlowe Corne feilde in the saide towne of Harlowe in Ryottous and warlike manner beinge arrayed and armed w[i]th swords daggers daggs gonnes Callivers pistolls speares Lannces pytche forkes steele Capes and diverse othere warlike weapons aswell invasive as defensive And beinge so armed and arrayed to the great terror of div[er]se yo[u]r highnes subiects thereabouts in manner of Battayle arrayed like men at warr readie preste to battaile did marche and muster about in the saide feilde w[i]th theire said gonnes and weapons aforesaide menconed insomuche as the people thereabouts durste not goe aboutes to resiste the same theire outragious and unlawfull attemptes and thus being assembled and arrayed did bringe into the saide feilde a multitude of people provided of purpose w[i]th waynes and suche othere like things ryottouslye to carrye awaie yo[u]r saide subiects Tythes in the saide feilde of Harlowe beinge and there sett fourthe and devided from the Nyne p[ar]tes w[hi]ch multitude of people were ryottouslye guided by the saide Ryotors w[i]thall manner theire warlike weapones and beinge thus ryottouslye garded did moste unlawfullie w[i]th theire saide waynes carrye awaie out of the saide feilde as muche of yo[u]r saide subiects tythe Corne as they coulde possiblye and the reste w[hi]ch they coulde not carrye awaie the saide Ryotors did ryottouslye the same waste and apoile by gevinge the same unto theire horses and Oxen and scatteringe the same abroade thorowe onto all the saide feilde to the losse and detrement of your saide subiect of two hundred pounds and more In Consideracon whereof and forasmuche as Ryotts Rowts unlawfull assemblies and other the misdemenors aforesaide are merelye repugnant to yo[u]r ma[jes]ties Lawes and Statutes made and provided and woulde also geve boldnes to others of like bad disposicon in those p[ar]tes to Comytt the like offences yf the same shoulde passe unpunished in the offendors aforesaide Maye it therefore please yo[u]r ma[jes]tie to grant to yo[u]r saide subiects yo[u]r highnes moste gratious writt of Subpena to be directed to the saide Reignalde Heron Gilbert Swynburne Edward Marshall Ouswolde Heron John Robson Andrewe Yeldrett and Pickeringe Comandinge them and every of them thereby p[er]sonallie to appeare before yo[u]r Ma[jes]tie and Connsaile in yo[u]r highnes highe Courte of Starr Chamber then and there to annswere unto the p[re]misses and to stande to suche order therein as to your ma[jes]tie and Connsaile shalbe thought meete and yo[u]r saide subiects shall dailie praye for yo[u]r Ma[jes]tie longe raigne over us./
The answers of Gilbert Swynburne, Edward Marshall and Oswalde Heron:
The ioynte & severall answeres of Gilbert Swynburne Edward Marshall and Oswalde Heron three of the defendants to the Bill of Complainte of Marck Erryngton and Willm Fenwick Complaynants./
The saide defendants not acknowledginge ani thinge conteined in the bill of Complainte againste them exhibited into this honorable Courte materiallie towtching them to be iust or trewe in such manner & forme as in the same is alleaged, Saien and everie of them for himself ioyntlie & severallie saieth That they & everie of them doe verelie beleeve the saide Bill of Complainte is devised rather of purpose to drive theis defendts to wrongfull troubles and expenses in the lawe Then of anie matter or iust cause so to doe Neverthelesse for plaine declaracon of the trueth for so much as concerneth theis defendnts They and everie of them doe saie That they were informed by Reynold Heron one other defendt to this Bill That the saide Reynold was lawfullie intituled to the corne in the bill of Complainte menconed, by vertewe of a lease to him made by the righte hon[or]able the ladie Katherine Countesse of Northumberland w[hi]ch theis defendts then did and yet doe verelie beleeve to be trewe And therefore at the requeste of the saide Reygnold Heron they and everie of them at or aboute the time in the bill of Complainte mencioned did in peaceable and quiet manner helpe aide and assiste the saide Reymold to take and carrie awaie the saide tythe corne in the bill of complainte mencioned w[hi]ch theis defts hope and thinck they mighte lawfullie doe, w[i]thout that, that the saide Erle of Northumberland by his Comissioners lawfullie authorised or by himselfe did make anie Lease of the saide tythe corne to the Complaynants or to anie of them as yt is sclannderouslie and falselie to the dishonour of the saide Erle alleadged in the bill of Complaint mancioned, And w[i]thout that, that theis defendts or anie of them in riotous and warlick manner arraied and armed ryotouslie outragiouslie and unlawfullie did carrie awaie out of the feilde of Harlowe in the Bill of Complainte mencioned the tythe corne in the Bill of complainte menconed, or w[i]thout that, that theis defendants or anie of them to the greate terrour of her heighnes Subiects in manner of battaile arraied or like menne at warr readie preste .. battaile did marche and muster aboute in the said feilde of Harlowe w[i]th theire gonnes &c as in the bill of Complainte is moste untrewlie alleadged, And to all other the Ryots rowts and unlawfull assemblies misdemeanors and offences in the saide Bill of Complainte menconed and laide to the chardge of theis defendts or anie of them, Theis defts saien & everie of them saiethe that they nor anie of them are thereof nor anie of them guiltie in such manner and forme as in & by the saide Bill of Complainte is sett downe, All w[hi]ch matters theis defendts are redie to averr & prove as this hon[or]able Courte shall awarde & praie to be dischardged out of this hon[or]able Courte w[i]th theire reasonable costes and expances by them wrongfullie susteyned/
Interrogatories exhibited on the p[ar]te and behalf of Marcke Erington & Willm Fenwick Complts unto Gilbert Swinborne Oswald Heron and Edward Marshall Deffendannts
Inprimis Whether was and yet is Henry now Earle of Northumb[er]land seized of a good estate yet endureing of & in the Tieth Corne of Harlawe in the Countie of Northumb[er]land aforesaid yea or no?
Item whether do you knowe or have you herde That dureing all the One and Thirtieth yeare of the Q[ueen's] Ma[jesties] Reign that now is or anie p[ar]te thereof there were eny Commissioners of the said Earle w[hi]ch had good & Lawfull aucthoritie to demise the said Tiethes and other Lands & Tenem[en]ts w[i]thin the said Countie at there discrecon yea or no? And what were the names of such Comissioners to your remembrannce?
Item whether do you knowe or have you herde. That the saied Comissioners aboute Martinmas in the same yeare did demise the saied Tiethes in Halawe aforesaied w[i]th other things unto the saied Marke Erington & Willm Fenwick to have and to houlde the same from thence frowarde untill the feast of St Martyn then next & imediatelie followeing. And how much money did the saied Marke and Willm paie for the same unto the saied Earle or his Comissioners?
Item whether about the xviijth daie of October Last past or at enie time before or after did Reginalde Heron, Gilbert Swinborne, Edward Marchall, Oswald Heron, John Robson, Andrew Yealdart & [blank] Pickeringe or enie of them w[i]th diverse other p[er]sons assemble them selfs in Harlawe Cornfeild in the saied town of Harlawe aforesaid yea or no?
Item whether were the saied p[ar]ties so assembled or enie of theim then and there armed and arrayed in enie warlike manner w[i]th Swords, Daggs, Gunnes, Callyvers, Petronilles, Pistolls, Speares, Lannces, Pitchforks, daggers, Steilcapps, Gauntletts or enie other warlike weapons either invasyve or defensyve: yea or no? and if there were shew & declare who were the same
Item the saied p[ar]ties being so armed whither did they or any of them then & there marche or muster w[i]th there saied weapons in manner of Battaill arraie like men of warre readie prest to battaill, or to have comitted some haineus [?..acte?], or no?
Item being so armed what number of p[er]sons came w[i]th theim, or enie of theim, w[i]th waines or such other like things to Carie awaie the saied Tiethes in Harlawe aforesaied being then devided from the ix p[ar]ts and whether were such p[er]sons as came w[i]th them or enie of them; by the saied Reignold Heron & the others or enie of themw[i]th there said weapons garded untill the saied Corne by them was Caried furthe of the saied Feild? or no?
Item whither was some of the saied Tieth Corne of Harlawe w[hi]ch they could not carie awaie, given to some of there hors or Oxen and scattered abroade throughout the feild of Harlaw aforesaied?
The Examinacons and depositions of wittnesses producte sworne and examined on the p[ar]te and behalf of Marke Errington and William Fenwick Complts againste Gilbarte Swinburne Oswolde Hearon and Edward Marchall deffendannts Taken at the Towne of Newcastell Uppon Tyne the Thirde daie of October in the xxxijth yeare of the Raigne of o[u]r sov[er]aigne ladye the Quenes ma[jes]tie that nowe is before Henry Mitfourthe John Gibson and Willm Grenewell Comissioners in that behalf assigned by vertue of the Quenes ma[jesties] comission hearunto anexed to them and others directed
Gilbart Swinbourne of Pruddowe castell in the County of Northumb[er]l[and] gent of thage of lxiiij yeares or thearabouts sworne and examined the day and yeare abovesaid deposeth & saythe as followeth (vidlt)
1/2/&3/ To the firste seconde and Thirde Interrogatories he cannot depose
4/ To the Fourthe Interr he saithe That aboute the tyme in this Interr menco[n]ed Rainolde Hearon he this examinate Edward Marshall and Oswolde Hearon were assembled in Harlawe Cornefeildes aboute tythinge of theire Corne and more to this Interr he cannot depose
5/ To the Fifte Interr he saythe he did not see any of the p[ar]ties in the Fourthe Inter named arrayed w[i]th anye other weappons but as they usually Ryde aboute theire Ordinarye affayres
6/ To the Sixte Interr he saithe he did not see any of the p[ar]ties in the Fourthe Interr named or any other marshe or muster in any suche Ryotous sorte as in this Inter is menconed
7/ To the seaventhe Interr he saythe That to the beste of his remembrannce theire were not above Two or three more then in the Fourthe Interr is named to carry awaye the Tythe Corne in this Inter menco[n]ed and they not guarded by Raynold Hearon or any other in suche ryotous sorte as in this Interr is menco[n]ed
8/ To the Eighte Interr he saythe he did not see any Corne wasted or spoyled or gyven to any beaste as in this Inter is menco[n]ed
Edward Marshall of Chipchase in the County of Northumb[er]l[and] yom[an] of the age of Threescore and Tenne yeares or Thereabouts sworne & examined the daie and yeare abovesaid deposeth & saythe as followeth (vidlt)
1 2 & 3 To the Firste second and Third Inter he cannot depose
4 To the Fourthe Interr he saithe That Raynold Hearon Gilbarte Swinbourne he this deponente and Oswold Hearon w[i]th Two or Three mo whose names he knoweth not were aboute the tyme in this Inter menco[n]ed in Harlawe Cornefeildes about tythinge of theire Corne
5 6 7 & 8 To the Fifte sixte seaventh and Eighte Inter he saithe as his p[re]contest Gilbarte Swinbourne hathe sayde
Oswolde Hearon of Chipchase in the County of Northumb[er]l[and] gent of thage of Forty yeares or thearabouts sworne & examined the daye and yeare abovesaide deposeth & saythe as followeth (vidlt)
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 & 8 To the Firste seconde Thirde Fourthe fifte sixte seaventh and Eighte Interr he saythe as his p[re]conteste Gilbarte Swinbourne hathe sayde