R. White sculpsit

THE Reverse or Back-face OF THE English JANUS. TO-WIT, All that is met with in STORY Concerning the COMMON AND STATUTE-LAW OF English Britanny, From the first MEMOIRS of the two NATIONS, to the Decease of King HENRY II. set down and tackt together succinctly by way of Narrative. Designed, Devoted and Dedicated to the most Illustrious the EARL of SALISBURY. Written in Latin by JOHN SELDEN of Salvinton, Student of the Inner-Temple in LONDON; and Rendred into English by REDMAN WESTCOT, Gent.

Haec faci­es Populum spectat; at illa Larem.

London, Printed for Thomas Basset, and Richard Chiswell. MDCLXXXII.

To the Right Honourable and truly Noble Lord, Robert Earl of Salisbury, Viscount Cranborn, Baron Cecil of Essenden, Knight of the Illustrious Order of the Garter, Lord High Treasurer of England, Master of the Court of Wards, and Privy Counsellor to His Most Excellent Majesty, JAMES, King of Great Britain, France and Ireland, Heartily according to his high desert, I devote and dedicate,

AND as it were with consecrated Flowr, and crackling grain of Salt, I offer up in Sacrifice. I am not in condition to do it with a costly Victim, or a full Censer. GREAT SIR, deign with favour to receive these scraps of Collection; relating intirely, what they are, and as far as the present Age may be supposed to be concerned in ancient Sto­ries and Customes, to the English-British State and Government; and so far forth to Your most Honoured Name. Which Name of Yours, whilest I, one of the lowermost Bench, do with dazzled eye-sight look up­on (most Noble Lord, and great Support of your Country)

I devoutly lay down Upon its ALTAR This small Earnest and Pledge of my Obedience and Duty.



THOU canst not be such a Stranger to thy own Countrey, as to need my commenda­tion of the Learned, Worthy and Famous AUTHOR of these following Sheets; or that I should tell thee, what a Scholar, a Phi­lologer, a Humanist, a Linguist, a Lawyer, a Critick, an Antiquary, and (which proves him an ab­solute Master of all these and many other Knowledges) what a Writer, the Great SELDEN was. Since it is liberally acknowledged by every body, that knows any thing (not only at home, but abroad also among Foreigners) that Europe seldom hath brought forth His Fellow for exquisite Endow­ments of Nature, Attainments of Study, and Accomplishments of Ingenuity, Sagacity and Industry. And indeed, to save me the labour of saying any more concerning this Non-pareil in all kinds of Learning, His own WORKS, which are now [Page] under a Review, and will e're long be made Publick in seve­ral Volumes, will sufficiently speak his Character, and be a more prevailing Argument to indear Him to thy good Opi­nion and firm Acquaintance, than mine or any other Words can.

My business now is only to give thee some Account of the Author's design in this little Treatise, and of those mea­sures I took in Translating Him, that is, in restoring him to his own Native Language; though his great Genius had made the Latin and several other Tongues, as natural and familiar to Himself, as the English was.

To speak first of the Author, I do take this Piece to have been one of his first Essays, if not the very first; wherein he launched into the World, and did not so much try the Judgement, as deservedly gain the Approbation of the Learned: which was certainly one Reason, why, though the whole matter of the Book be of an English Complexion and Concern, yet he thought fit to put it forth in a Latin dress. That this was his first Specimen, or at least one of the first, I gather from the time of his Writing it, viz. in the Six and Twentieth year of his Age; when I suppose he was not of any very long standing in the Temple; I mean, in all likelihood, whilst he was on this side the Bar. For having fraught himself with all kind of Learning, which the University could afford him (which could be, we must imagine, no small time neither; as I may be allowed to guess from that passage of his in this Book, where he so affectionately recognizeth his Duty and Gratitude to his dear Mother OXFORD; who, if she had no other Anti­quity to boast of, is and ever will be Famous for This Her Scho­lar, our great Antiquary; who hath also such a Monument to be seen in her publick Library, as will make her Glory and his Memory ever to flourish) I say, having after some compe­tent time taken leave of Academical Institutions, and being now engaged into the Study of Law, he thought he could not do his Profession a better service, than by looking back into former times, and making a faithful Collection of what might be Pertinent and Useful, to bring down, along through all Changes and Vicissitudes of State, the Light and Strength, the Evidence and Reputation of old Institutes and Precedents to our present Establishments under our Gracious and Happy Monarchy. May It, as it is in its Constitution to the English people Gracious; so be ever in its Success to It self, and con­sequently [Page] to Us all, Happy! Here then thou wilt find the Rights of Government through all Ages, so far as our Histo­ries will help us; Here thou wilt see, from the first, our KING setled in his just Power, even in his Ecclesiastical su­risdiction against the Papal Usurpation; one shrewd Instance whereof is, the forbidding Appeals to the Pope, at such a time when the Popish Religion was at its Zenith in this Island; that is, when People in all probability were most Ignorant. Here thou wilt easily be brought to acknowledge the Antiqui­ty and Usefulness of Parliaments (though under other Names till after the Conquest) when all the Barons, that is, as that Title did at first import, all Lords of Mannors, all Men of Estate assembled together for the determination of publick Affairs: which Usage, because it produced too numerous and cumbersome a confluence, was afterwards for better conve­nience retrenched into a popular Election by the Kings Writ to chuse some of the Chiefest to act for all the rest. And sure enough, if we in Duty keep up the Royal Prerogative, and our Kings, as ever they have done, and ever, I hope, will, in Grace and Clemency oblige the Peoples Consent in their Re­presentatives; we shall alwayes have such Laws, such a Go­vernment, such a Correspondence betwixt Prince and Subjects, as must (according to the Rules of Humane Prudence, ad­ding our Piety to it) make this Kingdom of Great Britanny (maugre the malice of the Devil and his Agents whatever, Je­suits or Fanaticks) a flourishing and impregnable Kingdom.

Having said this in General of the Author's design, I shall not descend to Particulars, which I leave to thy self, Reader, to find out, in the perusal, that may be of good Use and great Consequence to the Publick; but fearing, thou maist think I am so much taken up with the Author, that I have for­got My self, I have two or three words to speak of that sorry subject, before I leave thee.

As to the Translator; I confess, it is no great credit for any one to appear in that Figure; a Remark, which I have learn't from one, who hath translated another excellent Piece of this Noble Author, (Noble I call him, sith Nobility is rais'd by Parts and Merits, no less than continued by Birth and Descent) it was his Mare Clausum, wherein he, I spoke of, hath acquitted him­self very well, abating for his Villanous Dedication to the RUMP-Parliament, which was then setting up for a Republick; in which Dedication of his, he hath vilely and like himself (I [Page] speak in Charity, as to his Interest, I mean, not his Judge­ment or Conscience at least, if there were any) aspersed the Royal Family with Weakness and Collusion, to have lower'd the British Renown.

I am bid by Him, who puts this into thy hands, to tell thee, that when he was embark'd into this Employ; what­ever it was, upon the coasting of it over, he was surprized to find, he had undertaken such a difficult and hazardous Voy­age, and did presently conclude, That none but a Selden (that is, a Person of omnifarious Reading) was fit to be a Selden's Interpreter. For no other person, but one so qualified, can be Master of his Sense, Master of his Expression. His ordi­nary Style, where he delivers himself plainest, is as to the Matter of it, so full of Historical and Poetical Allusions, and as to the Method (and hath that of Crabbed in it besides) so Intricate and Perplex, that he seems, even where he pre­tends to Teach and Instruct, to have intended only to Amuse and Confound the Reader. In very deed, it is such a Style, as became a Learned Antiquary, which is to be Antique and Ora­cular; that one would think, the very Paper, he wrote upon, was made of the Sibyll's old-worn Sheets, and that his mean­ing could not be fisht out without the assistance of a Delian Diver. However the Translator (though so much Inferiour to the Undertaking, as to be almost Unacquainted with some considerable parts of it) did presume (whether rightly or no, must be left to thy judgement) that he was not utterly unfurnished with those Skills and Helps, which might make the Work Intelligible and Acceptable even to Plebeians. For though it was at first designed by the Excellent Author in his Latin for such as were meerly Lawyers and Scholars (they must be both, that mean to understand it as he wrote it) yet now it being done into English, it was to be calculated to the Meri­dian of common Capacities and vulgar Understandings. Which end he hath, he hopes, in some good measure an­swered; and in order to which end, he hath, to supply the de­fects of his Translation, at the end of the Book subjoyned some Annotations, which may serve partly to clear the Author's meaning, and partly to vindicate himself in the Interpreta­tion. He did think once to have affixt those Annotations to the places they belong to; but upon second and better thoughts, he consider'd, that the Authors Quotations would be enow of themselves to charge the Margin with, and a further superfoe­tation [Page] would but cloy and surbate the Reader; though in the body of the Work, there are up and down many Explanati­ons inserted, to excuse him from the trouble of having re­course to those Notes, which are added out of pure necessity, and not from any vanity of Ostentation, since the whole, if it had its due, might seem to require a perpetual Comment. In the main, which is enough for a Translator, be his Author what he will, he doth assure thee, that the meanest Subject of En­gland may now read one of her greatest Champions and Wri­ters (for Learned Pens sometimes do as good and as great service as Valiant Swords do) so understandingly, that he may edifie and learn, what duty and deference he ought to have for the Best of Governments.

And now, Reader, excuse me in a Digression, and do not impute it as a Levity to me, that I follow my Grave Au­thor. It is my Duty so to do; it is my Happiness, if I can: He doth not despair, now he appears in English, to have Fe­male-Readers too, to court him so far at least as to peruse his Translation, who hath so highly courted them with Noble Caresses in that Chapter, wherein he hath so learnedly plead­ed the Excellencies and Rights of that Angelical Sex, (if Angels have any Sex) to the abashment and overthrow of the Salick Law. To what purpose did the Author write so much in their Commendation, if they were not to know it? which, if the poor Translator hath any Obligations upon the Sex, he hopes they will own this as an Addition: not to men­tion that other Chapter of his, where, like a Gentleman and a Lawyer both, he maintains that freedom peculiar to our English Ladies, and which with Lawyers leave, I may call The Courtesie of England, in receiving of Salutes, against the censure of Rudeness on the one hand, and the suspicion of Wantonness on the other. Though I must confess also, that some of his Citati­ons in that defence, are so free, that I thought fit rather to leave them as I found them, than by putting them into En­glish, to expose the Modesty of the Sex.

I have no more to say, Reader, but to beg thy Excuse, for any thing, wherein I may appear to have come short of the Weighty and Abstruse Senses of our Great and Worthy Au­thor, and that I may detain thee no longer from his Conver­sation, to bid thee Farewell.


AND that the Tutelar or Guardian of my threshold may not entertain thee with unlucky or ill-boding terms, he doth freely bespeak thee Health and Greeting, whoever thou art, Dear Reader. More­over, he is in the humour to declare both the Occasion of drawing the first Furrow of this Enterprize, and also the Model and Frame of the whole Work, what it is, finished and compleated. It is a long while ago, considering how young a man I am, since from the first I have made it my hearty wish, that the ancient Ori­ginal and Procedure of our Civil Law might more fairly and clearly be made out; as far, I mean, as the thing will bear, and as what store we have of publick Records affords assistance.

[...],’ ‘For several men with several things are pleas'd,’ as said Archilochus of old; Senec. con­trov. and I do own for my self, what Seneca the Declaimer saith, that I take pleasure in going back to Studies of Antiquity, and in looking behind me to our Grand-sires better times. Which, to say truth, they who do too much, slight, [Page] ‘Ardua dum metuunt, [...]ucret. l. 1. amittunt vera viai.’ that is,

Whilst lofty passes they do fear, through sloth
They lose the certain tracks and paths of troth.

And, so may the Muses alway favour me, they are such things as are

Enn. Annal. l. 7.
sepolta, vetusta,
Quai faciunt mores veterésque novosque tenentem
Moltarum veterum Legum, Divômque Hominumque

as saith another old Latin Poet; that is, such stories as are

Antique, buried in rubbish, old and musty,
Which make one verst in customs old and new,
And of Laws, Gods and Men giving a view,
Render the careful Student skill'd and trusty.

Some spare hours have been spent by me in reading over Historians, Chronologers, Antiquaries, Foreigners and our own Countrey-men, those of Ancient date and the more polite of the Modern sort: those especially who seem'd to make out the quickest course to that Goal and design I spoke of. I have carefully cull'd out whatsoever I met with, that lookt like the Orders and Decisions of Praetors or Lord Chief Ju­stices, and whatsoever concerns the Civil or Prophane Law. (Pro­phane I call that, which is not held by the Religion of the Church; as [...]xtus Pompeius hath taught me.) I did judge that there were a great many things in those Writers worth the knowing, and which might deserve to be digested into a kind of Volume according to order of Chro­nology, I did in the first place advise, and took that special order with my self, that as to this undertaking, I might with the greater ease have my Attendants ready at hand to wait upon my Studies. I went about to [...] and cement, such as it is, (i. e. some method and con­nexion) to the scattered and disjointed bulk, and I brought it to a con­clusion; and assoon as it came into my mind to publish it, I endea­voured according to that meanness, which it appears in, to finish it (that I may make use of a Mathematick term) with its Complement. I have set the model and frame upon a sure account (not upon mine [Page] own credit neither, who am too apt to take on trust things suspected) and in a compendious way: I have writ my self compendiously and succinctly; I have transcribed out of others faithfully. I do on set purpose vouch the credit, I go upon, to be none of mine, but the Authors, I have taken out of, that I may not be accused of false dealing by unskil­ful or careless Readers. I have applyed my self not only to the mean­ing of the Writers, or to their historical account, but even to the very words and syllables, which they spoke, and have inserted them printed in a different character; those, I confess, unless it be from them of the middle age, many times sufficiently barbarous, that miserably want po­lishing, such as Criticks cannot away with, and do very well agree with the Records and Reports of Law, which we converse with. However I would not have thee disdain in the mean time brimful and wholsome draughts of liquor, because the Bowl was not made in a Potters shop of Colias a place in Athens, or in cold Winter to slight a garment which is not made of Attick Wooll;Plutar. de au­diend [...]. as Plutarch hath admonished the hearers of Philosophy. Let young Ladies speak finically with their golden Flower-amours, and let them, who have store and leave at once, court the graces of words and beauties of expression. 'Tis true, the care of exact speak­ing, is a thing befits the Muses, yet how the most abstruse Mysteries even of the highest Urania, of Divinity it self, are laid open without it, the Thomists, the Scotists, and what other Sects and Parties of School-men there are, know well enough. And there are some others also, that think they know; I mean the inquirers into Heavenly Calcu­lations (Astrologers) and the Weather-wise-men (Almanack­makers) who in good deed for the most part rely too much upon the trifling stories of their Masters. Now they, and not without good reason, have preferred the Arab Writers barbarously translated, and slovenly Bonatus before Julius Firmicus and modern Pontanus, as spruce as they are. These two may rather be termed Grammarians, than Astrologers. Nor do Aristotle's crabbed Lectures of natural P [...] ­losophy discourage Interpreters or procure to themselves any discredit, [...]y reason of the affected obscurity of speech, they are delivered in: and as to neatness of Poetry,Plutar. lib. orac. Pyth. Apollo himself hath been out-done by Sappho, Homer, Hesiod. Though the Matter doth often surpass the Work­manship; yet who is there is so rigid or so fond a Censurer, as to dispa­rage and debase the Matter upon the account of the Workmanship? Which I would not have be said only of those passages, which I have brought into this Piece out of those fore-mentioned Authors, but also of the whole Body of our Common-Law. I have, I hope, not unluckily be­gun with the very first Inhabitants of this Isle, as far as we can come to the knowledge of them. Those Authors, whom I have followed in the [Page] original of Story, I have, as it was meet, set down and remark'd, ad­ding the Judgement and Censure of the Learned. Afterward, besides Caesar and Tacitus there are but few that afford us any help, and that [...]ut in few things too. For the name of Brittany was known but of late to the Greeks, but of late to the Romans; and the Britans were truly for a long while divided from all the world besides. But among [...]reigners the latter Ages have enquired after them. I speak of Strabo, Pliny, Ptolomy, others; and a certain Writer of Asia, Marcianus Heracl [...]otes, not y [...]t, that I know of, turned into Latin, saith thus, Albion the Brittish Isle hath in it Thirty Three Na­tions, [...] Fifty Nine remarkable Cities; and then he sub­ [...]us other things concerning the number of Rivers, Promontories, Ha­vens and Creeks or Bays. I have stretched out this Piece to the death of King Henry the Son of Mawd the Empress by Jeoffrey the Count of Angers in France. In whose time, or near thereabout, are the first beginnings of our Law, as our Lawyers now account. There come in by the way Richard called Coeur de Lion and King John; but there is scarce any thing in that interim to our purpose. I have on pur­pose passed by Mr. Lambard's Archaeonomia (or Antiquites of Law) without medling with it at all, only when some obvious accasion did some­times suggest it for the explaining of what is set down by us. I have divided the whole into two Books; the first closes with the Saxons; the second begins with the Norman Conquest, the most famous Aera or Date of the English Government in the reckonings of time.

But however to refer the original of our English Laws to that Conquest (as some make bold to do) is a huge mistake;Philip. Ho­nor. Thes. po­litic. Lat. & Ital. Machiavell in Principe & comment. ad [...]iv. l. 1. c. 25. & 26. Cujacius. Alber. Gentil. l. 3. c. 11. de jure bell. forasmuch as they are of a far more ancient Date. For it is a remark amongst Statesmen, That new acquired Empires, do run some hazard by attemp­ting to make new Laws: and the Norman did warily provide against this danger, by bestowing upon the yielding conquered Nation the re­quital of their ancient Law: a requital, I say, but more, as it should seem, for shew than use; and rather to curry favour with the people at the present, than in good deed for the advantage of the English Name. Wherein he in some measure followed well near the practice of Alaricus, who having conquered the Romans, and finding that they took it in dudgeon to be bound up by the Laws of the Goths, though in other things they were compliant enough, restored to them the Roman Laws, but by sly interpretations against the sense and meaning of the Roman Laws he drew these Laws back again to the Gothish. For the times on this side the Normans entrance, are so full of new Laws, especially such as belong to the right of Tenancy or Vassalage; though other Laws have been carefully enough kept up from the time of the [Page] Saxons, and perhaps from an earlier date. For neither did the gliding Decrees of that Blazing-Star, which appeared in the Easter of that year, so well known for this Victory, prognosticate, as the change of the Kingdom (a thing which Astrologers affirm) so the abolition of our Laws; and yet in some sense peradventure an alteration of them both; at that rate, I mean, as Jerom [...], that the Comet in the year 1533.H. Cardan. in Prolem. l. 2. judic. astron. text. 54. which appeared in Aries (to which Sign, our Island ac­cording to Ptolomies doctrine is lyable) under the North side of the Milky Way, being of a Jovial, Martial and Mercurial force and effica­cy, was the fore-teller or fore-runner of the change of Religion; which happened three years after in Henry the Eighth's time. But whatever may be thought in other cases, Christianity is exempt from the Laws and over-ruling power of the Stars, and I do but too well perceive, that Cardan's piety is wanting in this and in other instances, and particu­larly in casting our Saviours Nativity. And why do I too much besides my purpose, trouble my self about these things here? Go thy wayes to our Janus, (for thou canst hardly chuse but own him having two faces) where to speak of our English Brittish Law ('tis no Treason I trow so to call it)

Nobilitas nec origo later,
Stat. 1. Silv.
sed luce sequente

That is,

It's noble rise doth not lye hid, but light
Attending makes it far more clear and bright.


Si nobilitas cunctis exordia pandit
Claudian. in laud. Serenae u [...]or. Stili [...].
atque omnes redeunt in semina causae.

That is,

If nobleness doth first commence all praise,
And all things from their feeds do themselves raise.

However it does not at all boast of its Rom [...]lus's, L. 2. Sect. 2. omnia. C. de vet. jur. enuel. its Numa's, its Decemviri, its 2000. Books, its 4000. and 4000. and 4000. Verses; and the like; which having been digested long since (as it were [Page] ‘—non hos quaesitum munus in usus,Virg. Aen. 1. That is, ‘A boon not purchas'd for such use as this)’ do far and near bear sway in Courts of Law throughout all Europe; yet is not the rise and original of our Laws also less to be regarded; nor is it perchance for distance of time further from Iapetus than they. But go thy wayes, I say, and see that thou dost not undertake without reason and good advice, to fit any thing to the present Age, otherwise than the changes, the repeals and cancelling parts of Laws, and new emergencies and vicissitudes of affairs, which were frequent, will give thee leave. Remember Lucretius in this case alike as in others.

Quod fuit in pretio,
Lucret. l. 5. de re [...]. nat.
fit nullo denique honore;
Porrò aliud succedit, & è contemtibus exit,
In (que) dies magis appetitur, floretque repertum
Laudibus, & miro'st mortaleis inter honore.

That is,

What was in price, at last hath no esteem;
Whilst somewhat else starts up, and gains repute,
And every day grows more in vogue and brute,
And mortals strangely do it highly deem.

According to what that other, and the greatest Philosopher among the Poets saith,

Multa dies,
Virg. l. 11. Aeneld.
variusque labor mutabilis aevi
Rettulit in melius.—

That is,

Time and the various toyl of changing age
Many things betters, and reforms the Stage.

[Page] And the Greek sentence, [...].’ ‘For time to Laws themselves gives Law full oft.’ without a world of rubs in the way and slips or distances of years, I saw I was not able to put upon the work the face of a History, and to muster up all things that are wanting. Very many things are so effaced by in­jury of time, several things have been lost through neglect, nor is the Learned World under a small discontent, or at small variance by reason of this loss. These remains, which are left us, to be handled upon oc­casion, I have alwayes accounted pleasant researches: I, and perhaps one may say, that those Learned Pieces, which Pomponius, Rivallius, Zasius, Oldendorp, Brissonius, and others, have published concer­ning the Twelve Tables, and the Laws written upon Oaken Planks, upon Elephants Skins, and in former Ages upon Brass, are not of more use and advantage for the City Spire in Germany, than these Collecti­ons may be for Westminster-Hall amongst us. We have said enough and to spare, concerning the model and frame of the Work. For me now to beg the Readers pardon, that I may speak a little concerning my self, seeing it was at my own choice, whether I would give him trouble or no, would be silly. I so be that any one shall shew himself more busie or pragmatical in these Writings of mine, than becomes him; [...],Aristoph. [...]. ‘Not knowing (as we say) a Pig from a Dog.’ I would not have him ignorant, that I value it no more than a rush, to be lashed with the flouts of prattle-boxes or tittle-tatlers, and sch creatures as carry the Goddess Nemesis on pickpack. Nor does any one that is in his wits, when an Ass kicks and flings at him to little or no purpose, regard an idle oafish affront so as to requite it. I paint upon my weather-boards Averrunca, i.e. God forefend, (as they did of old Arse verse upon houses, to preserve them from fire.) May In­tercedona, Pilumnus, and Deverra, drive away Silvanus, and keep him off from doing this tender Infant any harm. Well! let Asses and silly Animals commend, find fault, tune their pipes, how they will: [Page] let the envious and ill natured with their sneerings, prate and talk; let snotty nosed Fellows and Clowns, that feed upon cockle bread, approve what I write, or let them flout and fleer, or let them play Jack of both sides; it's all fiddle faddle to me, nor would I put a straw between.

Hegesand. Delphus ap. Athen. dip­nos 4.

Brow-benders, making Nose and Chin to meet,
With dangling Beards like sacks down to your feet.

Ye rigid Cato's and severe Criticks, do ye take in good part, what I have done; nor let me be altogether slighted, if by chance ye shall vouch­safe to look this way, nor with your skew looks fore-speak my harvest in the blade. I shall readily and willingly yield the conquest to him that fairly gets it, and rightfully corrects me. But whoever thou art of that sort of men,

Per meos fines & aprica rura
Lenis incedas,
Horat. Carm. 3. Od. 18.
abeasque parvis
Aequus alumnis.
O're my bounds and sunny plain
Take a gentle walk or twain;
Then depart with friendly mind,
To me and my Lambkins kind.

You, Plin. epist. ad Nat. Hist. that are candid and courteous, know, that 'tis a very hard matter to brighten things that are grown out of use, to furnish things obscure with light, to set off things that are disdained, with credit, to make things doubtful pass for probable, to as­sign to every thing its own nature, and every thing to its own nature; and that it is a very brave and gallant thing, as he sayes, for those that have not attained their design, yet to have endeavoured it; when the Will (as we say) is accepted for the Deed. But I know too, that every Cone or point of vision in the Opticks differs from a right angle;Senec. praf. ad controver. and I know how odious a thing a Train or solemn Procession is in the publick Games. Therefore, dear [Page] Reader, I bid thee heartily farewel; and with a fortunate endeavour, fetch out hence, what may make for thy turn. Why do I delay all this while to let thee in? [...]. Go thy wayes in, o' Gods name.

Laudamus veteres, sed nostris utimur annis:
Ovid. Fast. 1.
Mos tamen est aeque dignus uterque coli.

We praise old times, but make use of our own;
And yet 'tis fit they both alike be known.

Go in and welcome heartily; and be not unkind to thy Entertainer.




In laudem dignissimi Authoris, & politioris literaturae candidati, Carmen.

CUm Jovis effoeti Pallas foret orta cerebro,
Vagitus teneros virgo patrima dedit.
Accurrit, tacitéque novam subducere prolem
Tentat, & abstrusis abdere Juno locis.
Jupiter ingenuam solerti indagine natam
Quaeritat, & celeri permeat astra pede;
Stat, cerebrique tuam cernens, Seldene, Minervam
In natae amplexus irruit ille tuae.
Atque suam credit; parilique ab imagine formae
Illa fuit suavis, suavis & illa fuit.
Lisque foret, nisi quae quondam Lucina fuisset,
Musarum testis turba novena fuit.
Quam cognata Jovis tua casta Minerva Minervae est,
Cum tantum fallax lusit imago Deum?


DUm tuus ambiguâ Janus, facieque biformi
Respicit antiqua, & posteriora videt:
Archivos Themidis canos, monumentaque legum
Vindicat à veteri semi-sopita situ.
Hinc duplex te Jane manet veterane corona,
Gratia canitie, posteritate decus.
Gulielmus Bakerus Oxon.


ULtima caelicolûm terras Astraea reliquit.
Tu tamen alma redi & terras Astraea revise:
Astraea alma redi tuis Britannis:
Et diva alma fave tuis Britannis:
Et diva alma fove tuos Britannos:
Et diva alma regas tuos Britannos:
Cantemus tibi sic tui Britanni:
Foelices nimium ô tui Britanni:
Tu tandem alma redis divum postrema Britannis:
Ultima coelicolûm terras Astraea revisit.
Alma redi. sacro redolent altaria sumo
Et tibi sacratis ignibus. Alma redi.
Alma redi. posuit Liber hic primordia juris
Anglos quo poteris tu regere. Alma redi.
Alma redi. tibi templa struit Seldenus: at aram
Qui tibi nil potuit sanctius. Alma redi.
E. Heyward.

In Epigraphen Libri Carmen.

QUisnam Iò mussat? Posuisti Enyo
Arma; jam doctos Iber haùt Batavos
Marte turbat; Foedere jam Britannus
Continet Orbem.
Clusium Audax quis reserat latentem?
Falleris. Diae Themidis recludo
Intima. Haec portâ meliùs feratâ
Pandit Eanus.
I. S.


  • CHAP. I. THE counterfeit Berosus with the Monk that put him forth, both censured. The Story of Samothes the first Celtick King. The bounds of Celtica. From Samothes, say they, the Britans and Gauls were called Samothei. For which Dio­genes Laertius is falsly quoted; the word in him, being Semno­thei, page 1.
  • CHAP. II. An Account of the Semnothei. Why so called; the opinion of H. Stephen, and of the Author. Old Heroes and Philosophers went by the names of Demy-gods. The [...] or Venerable Goddesses, the same as Eumenides, dispensers of Justice. And by Plutarch and Orpheus they are set for Civil Magistrates. Judges in Scripture so called Elohim, i. e. Gods. These Semnai theai the same as Deae Matres in an old British Inscription, p. 3
  • CHAP. III. One Law of Samothes out of Basingstoke concerning the reckoning of Time by Nights. Bodinus his censure of Astrologers for other­wise computing their Planetary Hours. A brief account of some [Page] of Samothes his Successors, Magus, Sarron, Druis, from whom the Druids, &c. p. 5
  • CHAP. IV. K. Phranicus 900. Years after Samothes being to reside in Panno­nia, intrusts the Druids with the Government. In the mean time Brutus, Aeneas his Grand-son, arrives and is owned King by the Britans, and builds Troynovant, i. e. London. Dunvallo Molmutius 600. years after is King, and makes Laws concerning Sanctuaries, Roads or High-wayes and Plow-lands. K. Belin his Son confirms those Laws, and casts up four great Cause-wayes through the Island. A further account of Molmutius. p. 6
  • CHAP. V. A brief Account of Q. Regent Martia, and of Merchenlage, whe­ther so called from her, or from the Mercians. Annius again censured for a Forger, and his Berosus for a Fabulous Writer, p. 7
  • CHAP. VI. The story of Brutus canvast and taken to be a Poetick Fiction of the Bards. Jeoffry of Monmouth's credit called in question. Antiquaries at a loss in their judgements of these frivolous stories, p. 8
  • CHAP. VII. What the Trojan Laws were, which Brutus brought in. That con­cerning the Eldest Sons Inheriting the whole Estate, confuted. In the first times there were no Positive Laws; yet mention made of them in some very ancient Authors, notwithstanding a remark of some ancient Writers to the contrary, p. 10
  • CHAP. VIII. An Account of the DRUIDS out of Caesar's Commentaries, whence they were so called. Their determining in point of Law, and pas­sing Sentence in case of Crime. Their Award binds all parties. Their way of Excommunicating or Outlawing. They have a Chief over them. How he is chosen. Their Priviledge and Immunity, p. 12
  • CHAP. IX. The menage of their Schools without Writing. On other occasions they might use the Greek Letters, as Caesar saith, yet not have the language. The Greek Letters then were others than what they are now. These borrowed from the Gauls, as those from the Phoeni­cians. Ceregy-Drudion, or the Druids Stones in Wales. This Place of Caesar's suspected. Lipsius his Judgement of the whole Book, p. 13
  • [Page] CHAP. X. The Druids reckoning of time. An Age consists of thirty Years. What Authors treat of the Druids. Their Doctrines and Customs savour of Pythagoras and the Cabbalists. They were the eldest Philosophers and Lawyers among the Gentiles. Some odd Images of theirs in Stone, in an Abby near Voitland, described, p. 15
  • CHAP. XI. The Britans and Gauls had Laws and Customs much alike, and whence that came. Some things common to them both, set down; in rela­tion to the breeding of their Children, the Marrying of their Wives, the Governing of their Families, burning Women that killed their Husbands, and burning some Servants with the dead Master for company. Together with some Remarks of their publick Government, p. 16
  • CHAP. XII. Women admitted to publick debates. A large commendation of the Sex, together with a vindication of their fitness to govern; against the Salick Law, made out by several examples of most Nations, p. 18
  • CHAP. XIII. Their putting themselves under protection by going into great mens ser­vice. Their Coins of money, and their weighing of it. Some sorts of flesh not lawful to be eaten by them, p. 21
  • CHAP. XIV. Community of Wives among the Britans, used formerly by other Nati­ons also. Chalcondylas his mistake from our Civil Custom of Saluting. A rebuke of the foolish humour of Jealousie, p. 22
  • CHAP. XV. An account of the British State under the Romans. Claudius wins a Battel, and returns to Rome in Triumph, and leaves A. Plautius to order affairs. A Colony is sent to Maldon in Essex, and to several other places. The nature of these Colonies out of Lipsius. Julius Agricola's Government here in Vespasian's time, p. 24
  • CHAP. XVI. In Commodus his time King Lucy embraces the Christian Religion, and desires Eleutherius then Pope, to send him the Roman Laws. In stead of Heathen Priests, he makes three Arch-Bishops and twenty eight Bishops. He endows the Churches, and makes them Sanctuaries. The manner of Government in Constantine's time, where ends the Roman account. p. 27
  • CHAP. XVII. The Saxons are sent for in by Vortigern against the Scots and Picts, [Page] who usurping the Government, set up the Heptarchy. The Angles, Jutes, Frisons, all called Saxons. An account of them and their Laws, taken out of Adam of Bremen, p. 29
  • CHAP. XVIII. The Saxons division of their people into four ranks. No person to mar­ry out of his own rank. What proportion to be observed in Mar­riages according to Policy. Like to like the old Rule. Now Matrimony is made a matter of money, p. 30
  • CHAP. XIX. The Saxons way of judging the Event of War with an Enemy. Their manner of approving a proposal in Council, by clattering their Arms. The Original of Hundred-Courts. Their dubbing their Youth into Men. The priviledge of young Lads Nobly born. The Morganheb or Wedding-dowry, p. 32
  • CHAP. XX. Their severe punishments of Adultery, by maiming some parts of the body. The reason of it given by Bracton. The like practised by Danes and Normans, p. 33
  • CHAP. XXI. The manner of Inheriting among them. Of deadly Feuds. Of Wer­gild or Head-money for Murder. The Nature of Country-Tenures and Knights Fees, p. 36
  • CHAP. XXII. Since the return of Christianity into the Island. King Ethelbert's Law against Sacriledge. Thieves formerly amerced in Cattel. A blot upon Theodred the Good, Bishop of London, for hanging Thieves. The Country called Engelond by Order of King Eg­bert, and why so called. The Laws of King Ina, Alfred, E­thelred, &c. are still to be met with in Saxon. Those of Ed­ward the Confessor, and King Knute the Dane, were put forth by Mr. Lambard in his Archaeonomia, p. 37
  • CHAP. XXIII. King Alfred divides England into Counties or Shires, and into Hundreds and Tythings. The Original of Decenna or Court­leet, Friburg, and Mainpast. Forms of Law, how Peo­ple were to answer for those whom they had in Borgh or Main­past, p. 39
  • CHAP. XXIV. King Alfred first appointed Sheriffs. By Duns Scotus his advice, he gave Order for the breeding up of Youth in Learning. By the way, what a Hide of Land is. King Edgar's Law for Drink­ing. Prelates investiture by the Kings Ring and Staff. King [Page] Knute's Law against any English-man that should kill a Dane. Hence Englescyre. The manner of Subscribing and Sealing till Edward the Confessor's time. King Harold's Law, that no Welch-man should come on this side Offa's Dike with a weapon, p. 41
  • CHAP. VXX. The Royal Consorts great Priviledge of Granting. Felons Estates forfeited to the King. Estates granted by the King with three Exceptions of Expedition, Bridge, and Castle. The Ceremony of the Kings presenting a Turf at the Altar of that Church, to which he gave Land. Such a Grant of King Ethelbald com­prized in old Verse, p. 43
  • [Page]CHAP. I. WIlliam the Conquerour's Title. He bestows Lands upon his followers, and brings Bishops and Abbots under Military service. An account of the old English Laws, called Merchen­lage, Dan [...]lage, and Westsaxen-lage. He is prevailed upon by the Barons, to govern according to King Edward's Laws, and at S. Albans takes his Oath so to do. Yet some new Laws were added to those old ones, p. 47
  • CHAP. II. The whole Country inrolled in Dooms-day Book. Why that Book so called. Robert of Glocester's Verses to prove it. The Origi­nal of Charters and Seals from the Normans, practised of old among the French. Who among the Romans had the priviledge of using Rings to seal with, and who not, p. 51
  • CHAP. III. Other wayes of granting and conveying Estates, by a Sword, &c. par­ticularly by a Horn. Godwin's trick to get Boseham of the Arch-Bishop of Canterbury. Pleadings in French. The French Language and Hand when came in fashion. Coverse [...]. Laws against taking of Deer, against Murder; against Rape, p. 54
  • CHAP. IV. Sheriffs and Juries were before this time. The four Terms. Judges to act without appeal. Justices of Peace. The Kings payments made at first in Provisions. Afterwards changed into Mony, which the Sheriff of each County was to pay in to the Exchequer. The Constable of Dover and Warder of the Cinque Ports why made▪ A disorder in Church-affairs Reformed, p. 56
  • [Page] CHAP. V. William Rufus succeeds. Annats now paid to the King. Why claimed by the Pope. No one to go out of the Land without leave. Hunting of Deer made Felony. p. 59
  • CHAP. VI. Henry the First why called Beauclerk. His Letters of Repeal. An Order for the Relief of Lands. What a Hereot was. Of the Marriage of the Kings Homagers Daughter, &c. Of an Orphans Marriage. Of the Widows Dowry. Of other Homagers the like. Coynage-money remitted. Of the disposal of Estates. The Goods of those that dye Intestate, now and long since, in the Churches Jurisdiction; as also the business of Wills. Of Forfeitures. Of Misdemeanors. Of Forests. Of the Fee de Hauberk. King Edward's Law restored, p. 60
  • CHAP. VII. His order for the restraint of his Courtiers. What the punishment of Theft. Coyners to lose their Hands and Privy members. Guelding a kind of death. What Half-pence and Farthings to pass. The right measure of the Eln. The Kings price set for provisions, p. 63
  • CHAP. VIII. The Regality claim'd by the Pope, but within a while resumed by the King. The Coverfe [...] dispensed with. A Subsidy for marrying the Kings daughter. The Courtesie of England. Concerning Shipwrack. A Tax levied to raise and carry on a War, p. 65
  • CHAP. IX. In King Stephen's Reign all was to pieces. Abundance of Castles built. Of the priviledge of Coining. Appeals to the Court of Rome now set on foot. The Roman Laws brought in, but disowned. An instance in the Wonder-working Parliament, p. 67
  • CHAP. X. In King Henry the Seconds time, the Castles demolished. A Par­liament held at Clarendon. Of the Advowson and Presentation of Churches. Estates not to be given to Monasteries without the Kings leave. Clergymen to answer in the Kings Court. A Cler­gyman convict, out of the Churches Protection. None to go out of the Realm, without the Kings leave. This Repealed by King John. Excommunicate Persons to find Surety. Laymen how to be impleaded in the Ecclesiastical Court. A Lay-Jury to swear there, in what case. No Homager or Officer of the Kings to be Excommunicated, till He or his Justice be acquainted, p. 69
  • [Page] CHAP. XI. Other Laws of Church affairs. Concerning Appeals. A Suit betwixt a Clergy-man and a Lay-man, where to be tryed. In what case one, who relates to the King, may be put under an Interdict. The difference betwixt that and Excommunication. Bishops to be present at the Tryals of Criminals, until Sentence of Death, &c. pass. Profits of vacant Bishopricks, &c. belong to the King. The next Bishop to be chosen in the Kings Chappel, and to do Homage before Consecration. Deforcements to the Bishop, to be righted by the King. And on the contrary, Chattels forfeit to the King, not to be detained by the Church. Pleas of debts whatsoever in the Kings Court. Yeomens Sons not to go into Orders without the Lords leave, p. 72
  • CHAP. XII. The Statutes of Clarendon mis-reported in Matthew Paris, amended in Quadrilegus. These Laws occasioned a Quarrel be­tween the King and Thomas a Becket. Witness Robert of Glo­cester, whom he calls Yumen. The same as Rusticks, i. e. Vil­lains. Why a Bishop of Dublin called Scorch-Uillein. Vil­lanage before the Normans time, p. 74
  • CHAP. XIII. The Poet gives account which of those Laws were granted by Thomas a Becket, which withstood. Leudemen signifies Lay-men, and more generally all illiterate Persons, p. 77
  • CHAP. XIV. The Pope absolves Thomas a Becket from his Oath, and damns the Laws of Clarendon. The King resents it, writes to his She­riffs, Orders a Seisure. Penalties inflicted on Kindred. He provides against an Interdict from Rome. He summons the Bi­shops of London and Norwich. An account of Peter Pence, p. 79
  • CHAP. XV. A Parliament at Northampton. Six Circuits ordered. A List of the then Justices. The Jury to be of twelve Knights. Several sorts of Knights. In what cases Honorary Knights to serve in Juries. Those who come to Parliament by right of Peerage, sit as Barons. Those who come by Letters of Summons, are styled Chevaliers, p. 81
  • CHAP. XVI. The person convict by Ordeal, to quit the Realm within Forty dayes. Why Forty dayes allowed. An account of the Ordeals by Fire and Water. Lady Emme clear'd by going over burning Coulters. Two sorts of tryal by Water. Learned conjectures at the rise and [Page] reason of these customs. These Ordeals, as also that of single Combat condemned by the Church, p. 84
  • CHAP. XVII. Other Laws: Of entertaining of strangers. An Uncuth, a Gust, a Hogenhine; what of him who confesseth the Murder, &c. Of Frank pledge. Of an Heir under age. Of a Widows Dowry. Of taking the Kings fealty. Of setting a time to do homage. Of the Justices duty. Of their demolishing of Castles. Of Felons to be put into the Sheriffs hands. Of those who have de­parted the Realm, p. 87
  • CHAP. XVIII. Some Laws in favour of the Clergy. Of forfeitures on the account of Forest or hunting. Of Knights fees. Who to bear Arms, and what Arms. Arms not to be alienated. No Jew to bear Arms. Arms not to be carryed out of England. Rich men under suspi­cion to clear themselves by Oath. Who allowed to swear against a Free-man. Timber for building of Ships not to be carryed out of England. None but Free-men to bear Arms. Free-men who. Rusticks or Villains not such, p. 90
  • CHAP. XIX. Of Law-makers. Our Kings not Monarchs at first. Several of them in the same County. The Druids meeting-place where. Un­der the Saxons, Laws made in a general Assembly of the States. Several instances. This Assembly under the Normans called Parliament. The thing taken from a custome of the ancient Germans. Who had right to sit in Parliament. The harmony of the Three Estates, p. 93
  • CHAP. XX. The Guardians of the Laws, who. In the Saxons time seven Chief. One of the Kings among the Heptarchs styled Monarch of all En­gland. The Office of Lord High Constable. Of Lord Chancellor, ancient. The Lord Treasurer. Alderman of England, what. Why one called Healfkoning. Aldermen of Provinces and Graves, the same as Counts or Earls and Vis­counts or Sheriffs. Of the County Court, and the Court of Inquests, called Tourn le Viscount. When this Court kept, and the original of it, p. 95
  • CHAP. XXI. Of the Norman Earls. Their Fee. Their power of making Laws. Of the Barons, i. e. Lords of Manours. Of the Court-Baron. Its rise. An instance of it out of Hoveden. Other Offices much alike with the Saxons. p. 98

From the Beginning of the BRITISH Story down to the NORMAN Conquest.

The counterfeit Berosus with the Monk that put him forth, both cen­sured. The Story of Samothes the first Celtick King. The bounds of Celtica. From Samothes, say they, the Britans and Gauls were called Samothei. For which Diogenes Laertius is falsly quoted; the word in him, being Semnothei.

THERE came forth, and in Buskins too (I mean, with Pomp and State) some parcels of years ago, and is still handed about every where, an Author, called Berosus a Chaldee Priest (take heed how you suffer your self to believe him to be the same that Flavius Jo­sephus so often up and down quotes for a witness) with a Commentary of Viterbiensis. Or, rather to say that which is the very truth, John Annius of Viterbium (a City of Tuscany) a Dominican Frier, playing the Leger-de-main, having counterfeited Be­rosus, [Page 2] to put off his own strange stories, hath put a cheat upon the Lady Muse who is the Governess of Antiquities, and has hung a Bantling at her back.

After the Genealogies of the Hebrews drawn down by that Author, whoever he be, according to his own humour and method, for fear he should not be thought to take in the Kingdoms and Kings of the whole Universe, and the Etymologies of Proper Names by whole-sale, as we say; as if he had been born the next day after Grandam Ops was deli­vered of Jupiter, he subjoyns SAMOTHES (the very same who is yeleped Dis) the Founder of the Celtick Colonies, stuffing up odd Patcheries of Story to entertain and abuse the Reader.

Now, this I thought fit by the by, not to conceal, that all that space which is bounded with the River Rhine, the Alpes, the Mediterranean Sea, the Pyrenean Hills, and lastly, the Gascoin and the British Oceans, was formerly termed Celtogalatia; P [...]ol. 2. Geogr. & 2. quadrip. & Pausan. l. 1. nay, that P [...]olomy hath comprized all Europe under the name of Celtica.

Well, as the Commentary of Annius has it, ‘This Samothes was Brother to Gomar and Tubal by their Father Japhet, from whom first the Britans, then the Gauls were called Samothei; and especially the Philosophers and Divines that were his followers.’ And out of Laertius he tells us, ‘For it is evident, that among the Persians the Magi flourished, among the Babylonians and Assyrians the Chaldeans were famous, among the Celts and Gauls the Druids, and those who were called Samothei; who, as Aristotle in his Magick, and Sotion in his Three and Twentieth Book of Successions do witness, were men very well skilled in Laws Divine and Humane, and upon that account were much addicted to Religion; and were for that reason termed Samothei. These very words you meet with in Annius.

The name of Laertius is pretended, and the beginning of his Volume concerning the Lives of Philosophers. Why then let us read Laertius himself; ‘and amongst the Celts and Gauls (saith he) the Semnothei as saith Aristotle in his Book of Magick, and Sotion in his Three and Twentieth of Succession.’ Concerning the Samothei any other wayes there is not so much as one syllable. That they were men well skilled in Laws Divine and Humane, or that they had their name given them upon that account, only the Latin and foisted Edition of B. Brognol the Venetian has told us: whereas in truth, in all the ancient Greek Copies of Laertius, which that great Scholar Harry Stephen saw and consulted with (and he sayes he perused Eight or Nine) there is no mention at all made of that business.

And yet for all that, I cannot perswade my self, that it was only for want of care, or by meer chance, that this slipt into the Glosses: It does appear, that there have been able Lawyers and Master Philosophers not only among the Greeks, the Gauls, and those of Italy; but also among the Northern Nations, however Barbarous. Witness the Druids among us,Jornand. de 1th. Goth. c. 11. and among the Goths, as Jornandes tells us, besides Cosmicus, one Diceneus, who, being at once King of Men, and Priest of Phoebus, did to­gether with Natural Philosophy and other parts of good Learning, transmit to posterity a Body of Laws, which they called Bellagines; that is, By-Laws.

There are some, who in Laertius read Samothei; which is a device of those men, who with too much easiness (they are Isaac Casaubon's words) that I may say no worse, suffer themselves to be led by the Nose by that counterfeit Berosus.

An Account of the Semnothei. Why so called; the opinion of H. Stephen, and of the Author. Old Heroes and Philosophers went by the names of Demy-gods. The [...] or Venerable Goddesses, the same as Eumenides, dispensers of Justice. And by Plutarch and Orpheus they are set for Civil Magistrates. Judges in Scripture so called Elohim, i. e. Gods. These Semnai theai the same as Deae Matres in an old British Inscription.

ANd indeed if the Samothei had any thing to do with truth, or the Semnothei any thing to do with the ancient Law of the Celts (in as much as they write, that Britany was once in subjection to the Cel­tick Kings) I should judge it not much beside the design of my intended Method to inquire into the name and nature of them both. But they be­ing both one and t'other past all hope, except such a one as Lucian retur­ning from the Inhabitants of the Sun, or those of the Moon, would write their History, to speak of them would be more than to lose ones labour. I dare not to say much of them.

‘I imagine,Steph. ad La [...]rt. sayes Harry Stephen, they were so called, for having the Gods often in their mouths, and that in these words, [...], that is, The Worshipful Gods; or for that they themselves were ac­counted amongst men as a kind of Worshipful Gods: but, writes he, this latter I do not take to be so likely as the former.’ But say I for my part, if I might venture my opinion against the judgement of so great a person, I guess this latter to be the likelier of the two.

That the old Heroes went by the names of Gods, is a thing we read every where; nor did Antiquity grudge the bestowal of this honour even upon Philosophers. Not upon Amphiaraus the Prophet; not upon Aesculapius, not upon Hippocrates, renowned Physicians; they are recko­ned among the middle sort of Gods.Aug. de Civ. Dei, l. 2. c. 14. Laert. lib. 5. Thus Plato also was accounted by Antistius Labeo for a Demy-god, and Tyrtamus for his Divine eloquence, had the name of Theophrastus (that is, God-like Speaker) given him by his Master Aristotle. No wonder then, if thereupon thence forward great Philosophers were called Semnothei, and as it were Worshipful Gods. These instances incline me, whilst I only take a view of their Philosophy; whom, if either the authority of Annius, or the interpre­tation of Brognol had sufficiently and fairly made out to have been also at the same time Students and Masters of Law, I should hardly stick al­most to affirm, that I had found out in what places the true natural spring and source both of their name, and as I may say, of their dele­gated power is to be met with.

For I have it in Pausanias (forbear your flouts, because I waft over into Greece, from whence the most ancient Customs both Sacred and Prophane of the Gentiles came) I say in Pausanias the most diligent searcher of the Greek Antiquities, I meet upon Mars his Hill at Athens, and also in his Achaicks (or Survey of Achaia) with Chappels of the Goddesses whom the Athenians styled [...], that is, Worshipful. He [Page 4] himself also in his Corinthiacks makes mention of a Grove set thick with a sort of Oaks on the left side of Asopus a River in Sicyon (a Countrey of Peleponnesus) where there stood a little Chappel of the Goddesses, whom the Athenians termed Semnai, the Sicyomans called Eumenides. The story of Orestes and the Eumenides or Furies that haunted him is known to every body, nor can you tell me of any little smatterer in Poetry, who doth not know, that they, together with Adrastia, Ramnu­sia, Nem [...]sis, and other Goddesses of the same stamp, are pretended to be the Avengers of Villanies, and continually to assist Jupiter the great God in punishing the wicked actions of Mortals. They were black ones that met with Orestes, but that there were white ones too, to whom together with the Graces the Ancients paid their Devotions; the same Pausanias has left written in his Survey of Arcadia. I let pass that in the same Author, she whom some called Erinnys, that is a Fury; others called Themis the Goddess of Justice.

To be brief and plain; the Furies, that is, the Avenging Goddesses sit upon the skirts of the wicked; but the Eumenides, that is, the kind Goddesses,Soph. in Oe­dip. in Colon. as Sophocles interprets them (for that they were so called properly without the Figure of Antiphrasis or contradiction he is our Author) do attend the good and such as are blameless and faultless, and poor suppliants.Plut. in lib. de Exilio. Nay, moreover Plutarch writes in a Poetick strain, that Alcmaeon fled from these Eumenides; meaning in very deed, that he made his escape from the Civil Magistrates. In a word, the whole business we have been aiming at, Orpheus compriseth in two Verses of that Hymn he has made upon those Goddesses.

Nat. Com [...]s, Myt [...]ol. l. 3. c. 10. Plut. de Iside & Osiride.

which in a short Paraphrase speaks thus;

But ye with eye of Justice, and a face
Of Majesty survey all humane race,
Judges commission'd to all time and place.

See here plainly out of the most ancient Divine among the Heathens, how Judges and the Dispensers of Law pass under the notion of these Ve­nerable Goddesses: and it was a thing of custom to term the Right of the Infernal Powers, as well as the Doctrine of the Heavenly ones, a thing Holy and Sacred. What hinders then I pray, but that one may guess, that the Name, and Title, and Attributes or Characters of the Semnothei sprang forth and flowed from hence; to wit, from the Semnai theai or Venerable Goddesses?

Homer in his Poems calls Kings [...], that is,Odyss. 3. persons bred and nou­rished by Jove; Exod. 22. Psal. 82. yea, the Eternal and Sacred Scriptures themselves do more than once call Judges by that most holy name Elohim, that is, Gods. The judgement is Gods, not Mans; 2 Paral. 1 [...]. Munst. ad Gen. c. 9. and (as Munster remarks out of Rabbi Kim­chi) whatsoever thing Scripture designs to magnifie or express with height,Plut. de serâ Dei vindicta. it subjoyns to it the name of God.’ God (as Plutarch has it out of Plato, who in his Attick style imitates our Moses) hath set himself out as a pattern of the Good, the dreadful syllables of whose very not­to be uttered Name (though we take no notice of the Cahalists art) do strike, move and twitch the ears of Mortals, and one while when [Page 5] thorough ignorance they straggle out of the way, do bring them back into the path or track of Justice; another while when they are stopt up with prejudice, and are overcast with gloomy darkness, do with a stu­pendous, dismal and continual trembling shake the poor wretches, and put them into Ague-fits. Nor let that be any hindrance, that so splendid and so manly a name is taken from the weaker Sex, to wit, the Goddesses.

Let us more especially have to do with the Britans, as those amongst whom are those choice and singular Altars, not any where else to be met with in the whole World,Camden. with this Inscription, DEIS MA­TRIBUS, To the Mother-Goddesses. Concerning these Mother-God­desses, that excellent Learned Man (that I may hint it by the by) confesses he could with all his search find out nothing; but if such a mean person as I, may have leave, What if one should imagine, that those Goddesses, whom Pausanias in his Attick stories calls [...] ,were the same as these Mother Goddesses? for so those Names import. The Mother of the Gods is a Title well known; wherewith not only Berecynthia, but also Juno, Cybele, Tellus, Ceres, and other Shees among Mythologists are celebrated and made famous.

Be this, if you will, a thing by the by and out of the way; as he tells us,Senec. Epist. 115. No great Wit ever pleased without a pardon. Relying upon that (the Readers Pardon I mean) I undertook this Job, whatever it is; and upon confidence of that, I come back to the business.

One Law of Samothes out of Basingstoke concerning the reckoning of Time by Nights. Bodinus his censure of Astrologers for other­wise computing their Planetary Hours. A brief account of some of Samothes his Successors, Magus, Sarron, Druis, from whom the Druids, &c.

WE do not any where meet with any Law enacted by Samothes his authority. Yet one only one concerning the account of times, Basingstoke the Count Palatine, a very modern Historian, attri­butes to him. He defined, sayes he, the spaces or intervals of all time, not by the number of dayes, but of nights (the same thing, saith Caesar of the Gauls, and Tacitus of the Germans) and he observed birth-dayes, and the commencements of months and years in that order, that the day should come after the night. Truth is, the Britans do at this time observe that fashion, which is most ancient, and highly agreeable to Nature.Gen. 1. And the Eve­ning and the Morning was the first day, and so on, sayes the Hebrew Wri­ter, whose Countrey-men the Jews also followed this custom.

The Peripateticks (i. e. the followers of Aristotle) do also at this rate reckon Privation in the number of their three Principles;Bodin. l. 3. damonoman. and hereupon John Bodin adventures to censure the common Astrologers, that they, ac­cording to the course of the Planets as they order it, and repeat it over and over, begin their unequal hours, from the rising, rather than the setting of the Sun.

[Page 6] They write, that after this Samothes, there came in play Magus, Sarran, Druis, Bardus, and others more than a good many, in order of succes­sion. Sarron was not addicted to make Laws ('tis Stephanus Forcatu­lus helps us to this) but to compose them, [...]. l. 1. [...] Gall. Imp. to put them into order, and to recommend them to practice, as one who reduced those Laws, which his Grand-father Samothes, and afterward his Father Magus had made, into one Volume, and with severe Menaces gave order for the keeping of them.’

From Druis or Druides they will have the Druids so called, a sort of Philosophers so much famed and talked of in Caesar, Pliny and others: believe it who list for me. The whole business of the Druids at pre­sent I put off till Caesar's times.

K. Phranicus 900. Years after Samothes being to reside in Panno­nia, intrusts the Druids with the Government. In the mean time Brutus, Aeneas his Grand-son, arrives and is owned King by the Britans, and builds Troynovant, i. e. London. Dunvallo Molmutius 600. years after is King, and makes Laws concerning Sanctuaries, Roads or High-wayes and Plow-lands. K. Belin his Son confirms those Laws, and casts up four great Cause-wayes through the Island. A further account of Molmutius.

ABout Nine hundred years after Samothes, King Phranicus (take it from the British story, and upon the credit of our Jeoffry) in­trusts the Druids with the management of affairs, whilst he himself resided in Pannonia or Hungary.

In the mean time Brutus, the Son of Sylvius Posthumus King of the Latines, Serv. ad 6. Aeneid. and Grand-child to Aeneas (for Servius Honoratus in his Com­ment upon Virgil, makes Sylvius to be the Son of Aeneas, not of Asca­nius) being happily arrived by Shipping, with Corinus one of the chief of his company, and coming to land at Totnes in Devonshire, the Britans salute and own him King. He after he had built New Troy (that is, London) gave Laws to his Citizens and Subjects; those such as the Trojans had, or a Copy of theirs.

A matter of Six hundred years after Dunvallo Molmutius being King, ordained (my Authors besides Jeoffry of Monmouth, are Ralph of Che­ster in his Polychronicon, and Florilegus) ‘that their Ploughs, Temples and Roads that led to Cities, should have the priviledge to be places of refuge. But because some time after there arose a difference con­cerning the Roads or High-wayes, they being not distinguished by certain Limits and Bounds, King Belin Son of the foresaid Molmutius, to remove all doubt, caused to be made throughout the Island four Royal High-wayes to which that priviledge might belong; to wit, the Fosse or Dike, Watlingstrete, Ermingstrete, and Ikenilt­strete. (But our Learned Countrey-man and the great Light of Britan, William Camden, Clarenceaux King at Arms is of opinion, [Page 7] these Cause-wayes were cast up by the Romans; a thing that Tacitus, B [...]de and others do more than intimate.)

‘Moreover, so sayes Jeoffry, he ordained those Laws, which were called Molmutius his Laws, which to this very time are so famed amongst the English. Forasmuch as amongst other things, which a long time after, Gildas set down in writing, he ordained, that the Temples of the Gods, and that Cities should have that respect and veneration, that whatsoever runagate Servant, or guilty person should fly to them for refuge, he should have pardon in the presence of his enemy or prosecutor. He ordained also, That the Wayes or Roads which led to the aforesaid Temples and Cities, as also the Ploughs of Husbandmen should be confirmed by the same Law: Afterwards having reigned Forty years in peace, he dyed and was buried in the City of London, then called Troynovant, near the Temple of Concord’(by which Temple,Norden in Brit. S [...]e. ul. there are not wanting those who understand that Illustrious Colledge on the Bank of Thames, consecrated to the Study of our Common Law, now called the Temple and) ‘which he himself had built for the confirmation of his Laws.’ At this rate Jeoffry tells the story; but behold also those things which Polydore Virgil hath gathered out of ancient Writers, whereof he wanted no store.

‘He first used a Golden Crown, appointed Weights and Measures for selling and buying of things, punisht Thieves and all mischie­vous sorts of men with the greatest severity; made a great many High-wayes; and gave order, how broad they should be, and ordai­ned by Law, that the right of those Wayes belonged only to the Prince; and set dreadful Penalties upon their heads, who should vio­late that right, alike as upon theirs who should commit any misde­meanour in those wayes. Moreover, that the Land might not lye barren, nor the people be frequently oppressed or lessened through Dearth or want of Corn, if Cattle alone should possess the Fields, which ought to be tilled by men, he appointed how many Ploughs every County should have, and set a penalty upon them by whose means that number should he diminished: And he made a Law, That Labouring Beasts which attended the Plough, should not be distrained by Officers, nor assigned over to Creditors for money that was owing, if the Debtor had any other Goods left.’ Thus much Polydore.

A brief Account of Q. Regent Martia, and of Merchenlage, whe­ther so called from her, or from the Mercians. Annius again censured for a Forger, and his Berosus, for a Fabulous Writer.

THe Female Government of Martia, Widow to King Quintiline, who had undertaken the Tuition of Sisillius Son to them both, he being not as yet fit for the Government, by reason of his Nonage; found out a Law, which the Britons called the Martian Law. This also among the rest (I tell you but what Jeoffry of Monmouth tells [Page 8] me) King Alfred translated, which in the Saxon Tongue he called Merchenlage. Whereas nevertheless in that most elaborate Work of Camden, wherein he gives account of our Countrey, Merchenlage is more appositely and fitly derived from the Mercians, and they so called from the Saxon word [...], that is, a Limit, Bound or Border.

These are the Stories, which Writers have delivered to us concer­ning those times, which were more ancient than the History of the Romans; but such as are of suspected, of doubtful, that I may not say of no credit at all. Among the more Learned, there is hardly any Critick, who does not set down Annius in the list of Forgers. And should one go to draw up the account of Times, and to observe that difference which is so apparent in that Berosus of Viterbium from Sacred Scriptures, and the Monuments of the Hebrews, one would perhaps think, that he were no more to be believed, than another of the same name, who from a perpendicular position of the wandring Stars to the Center of the World in the Sign of Cancer, adventured to foretel, that all things should be burnt; and from a like Congress of them in Capri­corn, to say,Senec. Nat. quast. l. 3 c. 29 there would be an universal Deluge. The story is in Seneca.

The story of Brutus canvast and taken to be a Poetick Fiction of the Bards. Jeoffry of Monmouth's credit called in question. Antiquaries at a loss in their judgements of these frivolous stories.

SOme have in like manner made enquiry concerning our British Hi­story, and stumbled at it. From hence we had Brutus, Dunvallo and Queen Martia: There are some both very Learned and very Judi­cious persons, who suspect, that that story is patched up out of Bards Songs and Poetick Fictions taken upon trust, like Talmudical Traditions, on purpose to raise the British name out of the Trojan ashes. For though Antiquity, as one has it, is credited for a great witness; yet how­ever 'tis a wonder, that this Brutus, who is reported to have killed his Father with an Arrow unluckily aimed, and to have been fatal to his Mother at her very delivery of him (for which reason Richard Vitus now after so many Ages makes his true name to be [...], that is, Mortal) should be mentioned by none of the Romans: a wonder, I say, that the Latin Writers should not be acquainted with the name of a Latin Prince, who gave both Name and Government to Britany. Did Euemerus Messenius alone ever since the World began, fail to the Panchoans and the Triphyllians? Indeed it is an ordinary thing for Poets, to ingraft those whom they celebrate in their Poems, into Noble Stocks and Illustrious Families, and by the assistance of their Muses heightning every thing above the truth, to feign and devise a great many stories. And what else were the Bards, Athen. dip. nos. l. 6. as Athenaeus tells us out of Possidonius; but Poets reciting mens praises in song? How many things are there in that Fabulous Age (which in Joseph Scaliger's account would more aptly be called the Heroick Age of the World,Jos. Scal. in Elench. O [...]at. Chron. D. Par. I mean) down from that [Page 9] much talked of Deluge of Pyrrha to the beginning of Iphitus his Olym­piads; how many idle stories are there mixt with true ones, and after­wards drest up and brought upon the stage? ‘Very many Nations, sayes Trithemius, Trithem. lib. de s [...]cundis. as well in Europe as in Asia, pretend they took their original from the Trojans; to whom I have thought good to lend so much faith, as they shall be able to perswade me of truth by suffici­ent testimony. They are frivolous things, which they bring concer­ning their own Nobility and Antiquity, having a mind as it were openly to boast, as if there had been no people in Europe before the destru­ction of Troy; and as if there had been no one among the Trojans themselves of ignoble birth.’

He who made the Alphabetical Index to Jeoffry of Monmouth (who was Bishop of St. Asaph too) as he is printed and put forth by Ascensius, propt up the Authors credit upon this account, that, as he sayes, he makes no mention any where in his Book, of the Franks; by reason forsooth, that all those things almost, which he has written of, were done and past before the Franks arrival in France. This was a slip surely more than of memory. Go to Jeoffry himself, and in his Nineteenth Chapter of his first Book you meet with the Franks in the time of Bren­nus and Belinus among the Senones, a people of France: a gross mis­reckoning of I know not how many hundred years. For the Franks are not known to have taken up their quarters on this side the River Rhine, till some Centuries of years after Christs Incarnation. For how­beit by Poetick license and Rhetorical figure Aeneas be said to have come to the Lavinian Shores, (which had not that name till some time after) yet it were much better, that, both in Verse and Prose, those things which appertain to History, should be expressed according to that form of Ovid; where at the burning of Rhemus his Funeral Pile he sayes, ‘Tunc Juvenes nondum facti flevere Quirites;Ovid. 4. Fast. that is,

The young men then not yet Quirites made,
Wept as the body on the Pile they laid.

And at this rate Jeoffry might and ought to have made his Translation, if he would have been a faithful Interpreter.

But as to our Brutus whence the Britans, Saxo whence the Saxons, Bruno whence those of Brunswick, Freso whence those of Friseland, and Bato whence the Batavians had their rise and name, take notice what Pontus Heuterus observes,Heuter. de Vet. Belgio. l. 2. c. 8. as others have done before him. ‘Songs or Ballads, sayes he, and Rhymes made in an unlearned Age, with ease obtruded falshoods for truths upon simple people, or mingling false­hoods with truths imposed upon them. for three or four hundred years ago there was nothing that our Ancestors heard with greater glee, than that they were descended from the adulterous Trojans, from Alexander of Macedonia the Overthrower of Kingdoms, from that Man­queller Hercules of Greece, or from some other disturber of the World.’ And indeed that is too true which he sayes,

[Page 10]
—Mensuraque fictis
Ovid. Metam. 12.
& auditis aliquid novus adjicit auctor.

which in plain English speaks this sence.

Thus Stories nothing in the telling lose,
The next Relater adding still to th' News.

But I will not inlarge.

To clear these points aright, Antiquaries, who are at see-saw about them, will perhaps eternally be at loss, like the Hebrews in their myste­rious debates, for want of some Elias to come and resolve their doubts.

What the Trojan Laws were, which Brutus brought in. That con­cerning the Eldest Sons Inheriting the whole Estate, confuted. In the first times there were no Positive Laws; yet mention made of them in some very ancient Authors, notwithstanding a remark of some ancient Writers to the contrary.

WEll! Suppose we grant there was such a Person ever in the World as Brutus: He made Laws, they say, and those taken out of the Trojan Laws; but what I pray were those Trojan Laws them­selves? There is one, I know well enough, they speak of, concerning the Prerogative of the eldest Sons, by which they inherited the whole Right and Estate of their deceased Father. Herodotus writes it of Hector, Herodot. in Euterpe. Son and Heir to King Priam, and Jeoffry mentions it; but did this Law cross the Sea with Brutus into Brittany? How then came it, that the Kingdom was divided betwixt the three Brothers, Locrinus, Camber, and Albanactus? betwixt the two, Ferrix and Porrix? betwixt Brennus and Belinus? and the like of some others. How came it, that in a Par­liament of Henry the Eighth,Stat. 37 Hen. 8. c. 26. provision was made, that the Free-holds of Wales should not thence-forward pass according to that custom, which they call Gavelkind? And anciently, if I be not mistaken, most Inheritances were parted among the Children, as we find in Hesiods works. [...].—’ i. e. ‘We had already parted the Estate.’ And to the same purpose many like passages there are in old Poets, and in Holy Writ. But, as I said, what are those Trojan Laws? Perhaps the same with those, by which Nephelococcygia, the City of the Birds in Aristophanes, (or, as we use to say, Vtopia) is Governed.

The gravest Writers do acknowledge, that those most ancient times were for the most part free from positive Laws. The people, so says Justin, Justin hist. l. 1. wee held by no Laws: The Pleasures and Resolves of their Princes past for Laws, or were instead of Laws. Natural Equity, like the Lesbian [Page 11] Rule in Aristotle, Arist. 5. Et [...]. being adapted, applied, and fitted to the variety of emergent quarrels, as strifes, ordered, over-ruled, and decided all Controversies. ‘And indeed at the beginning of the Roman State, as Pomponius writes, the people resolved to live without any certain Law or Right,’ ff. de Orig. jur. l. 2. and all things were governed by the hand and power of the King: For they were but at a little distance from the Golden Age, when

—vindice nullo
Sponte suâ sine lege fidem rectumque colebant.
Meram. 1. & Lucr. l. 5. cum Poetarumtur­b [...].

That is to say, when

—People did not grudge
To be plain honest without Law or Judge.

That which the Heresie of the Chiliasts heretofore affirmed,August. de civ. Dei. l. 19. c. 14. concerning the Sabbatick or seventh Millenary, or thousand years of the World. And those Shepherds or Governors of the people, to whom

Hom. Iliad. 9.

that is,

—Into whose hand
Jove trusts his Laws and Scepter for Command.

did Govern them by the guidance of vertue, and of those Laws which the Platonicks call the Laws of second Venus. ‘Not out of the ambition of Rule, as St. Austin hath it, but out of duty of Counsel; nor out of a domineering pride, but out of a provident tenderness.’ Do you think the Trojans had any other Laws? Only except the worship of their Gods and those things which belong to Religion. It was duty, Senec. ep. 91. Plut. de Isid. & Osirid. says Se­neca, not dignity, to Reign and Govern: And an Eye and a Scepter among the Aegyptians, were the absolute Hieroglyphicks of Kings.

What? that there is not so much as the word [...], that is Law, to be met with in those old Poets, Orpheus, Musaeus, or Homer, (who was about an hundred and fifty years after the destruction of Troy) as Jose­phus against Appio, Plutarch, Joseph. adv. App. l. a. Plut. in lib. de Homero. and several modern Writers have remarked: I confess, if one well consider it, this remark of theirs is not very accu­rate. For we very often read in Homer and Hesiod, the word [...], which signifies Laws; and in both of them the Goddess Eunomia from the same Theme as [...].


which being interpreted, is

But they by legal methods bear the sway
I'th' City fam'd for Beauties.—

[Page 12] which is a passage in Homers hymn to Mother Tellus, Plut. lib. de Musica. and [...], i. e. the Law of Song, (which Musicians might not transgress) is mentioned in his hymn to Apollo. Nay great Plato, Plato in Mi­noc. one beyond all exception, has left it in writing, that Talus (who had the management of the Cretan Common-wealth committed to him, together with Rhadamauthus, the Son of Jupiter, by King Minos) that he did thrice every year go the cir­cuit through the whole Island (which was the first Country,Sol. Polyhist. cap. 6. as Poly­histor tells us, that joyned the practice of laws with the study of Let­ters) and kept Assizes, giving Judgment according to Laws engraven in brass. I say nothing of Phoroneus King of the Argives, or of Nomio the Arcadian; and in good time leave this Subject.

I could wish I might peruse Jupiters Register, wherein he has record­ed humane affairs. I could wish, that the censure of some breathing Library and living study (which might have power over the Ancients, as we read in Eunapius that Longinus had) or that the memory of some [...] in vit. P [...]phyr. Aethalides might help us sufficiently to clear and make out the truth.

Hence our next passage is to the Classick Writers of the Latin style and story.

An Account of the DRUIDS out of Caesar's Commentaries, whence they were so called. Their determining in point of Law, and pas­sing Sentence in ease of Crinie. Their Award binds all parties. Their way of Excommunicating or Outlawing. They have a Chief over them. How he is chosen. Their Priviledge and Immunity.

CAjus Julius Caesar was the first of the Romans, who has committed to writing the Religious Rites, the Laws and the Philosophy of the DRVIDS. Their name is of a doubtful origination, by no means were they so called from that Druis or Druides we meet with in Berosus: But whether they were so termed from a Greek word [...], that signifies an Oak, in that they performed none of their devotions without oaken leaves,Plin. nat. hist. l. 16. c. 44. as Pliny and those that follow him are of opinion; or from the Dutch True-wise, Gorop. in Gal. as Goropius Becanus will have it; or from Trutin, a word which with the ancient Germans signified God, Paul. Merula, in Cosmogr. part. 2. lib. 3. as Paulus Merula quotes it out of the Gospel of Othfred (though in the Angels salutation, in the Magnificat, in Zachariahs Song and elsewhere, Trutin rather de­notes Lord than God; and see whether there does not lye somewhat of the Druid in the name of St. Truien, among the people of Liege, some having exploded St. Drudo) whencesoever they had their name, these Gownmen among the Gauls, I and the Britans too, were the Interpreters and Guardians of the Laws. The discipline of these Druids was first found in Britany, and so far as it regards the Civil Court, we shall faith­fully subjoyn it out of the forenamed Caesar.

‘1. They order matters concerning all controversie, public and private.’ So in the Laws of the twelve Tables at the same rate the knowledg of cases, of precedents, of interpreting was in the Colledge [Page 13] of Pontiffs or High Priests, and such plainly our Druids were. ‘If any ill prank had been played, if murder committed, if there were a contro­versie about Inheritance, about bounds of Land, these were the men that determined it, these amerced rewards and punishments.’

2. If any private person or body of men do not stand to their award, they excommunicate him, that is, forbid him to come to sacrifice, which among them is the most grievous punishment.

3. Those who are thus excommunicated, are accounted wicked and ungodly wretches, every body goes out of their way, and shuns their company and conversation for fear of getting any harm by contagion. Neither have they the benefit of the Law when they desire it, nor is a­ny respect shown to them.

4. The Druids have one over them, who has the chiefest authority amongst them.

5. When he dies, if there be any one that is eminent above the rest he succeeds in place: But if there be several of equal merit, one is chosen by majority of Votes.

6. The Druids were wont to be excused from personal attendance in War, nor did they pay taxes with the rest; they were freed from Military employ,Num 1. 49. Ezra 7. 24. and had an immunity of all things. The Levites a­mong the Hebrews, who were the most ancient Priests in the world, injoyed the same priviledge.

The menage of their Schools without Writing. On other occasions they might use the Greek Letters, as Caesar saith, yet not have the language. The Greek Letters then were others than what they are now. These borrowed from the Gauls, as those from the Phoeni­cians. Ceregy-Drudion, or the Druids Stones in Wales. This Place of Caesar's suspected. Lipsius his Judgment of the whole Book.

7. UPon the account of that priviledge, they had in their Schools (which were most of them in Britany) a great confluence of youth. ‘They are said to learn without Book, says Caesar, a great num­ber of Verses: Therefore some of them spend twenty years in the dis­cipline. Nor do they judge it meet to commit such things to writing, whereas generally in all other, whether publick affairs or private ac­compts, they make use of Greek letters.

What? Greek letters so we read Greek ones. Why! Marseilles, a City of France, which was a Greek Colony of the Phocians, had made the Gauls such lovers of Greeks, Strab. Geogr. lib. 4. that, as Strabo the Geographer tells us, they writ their very Contracts and Covenants, Bargains and Agreements, in Greek. The fore-mentioned Julius Caesar also writes,Caes. de bello Gall. l. 1. that there were Tablets found in the Camp of the Switzers, made up of Greek letters.

But, for all that, I would not have any one from hence rashly to ga­ther, that the Greek Language was in use to that Age and People, or to these Philosophers and Lawyers. They made use of Greek letters, there­fore [Page 14] they had the Greek Tongue too; this truly were a pitiful consequence. At this rate the [...]argum or Chaldee Paraphrase, as Paulus Merula has it, and Gorepius before him, would consist of the Hebrew Language, because 'tis Printed in Hebrew Characters: And the like may be said of the New Te­stament in Syriack, done in Hebrew letters.

What? that those very Letters of the Greeks in Caesars time, and as we now write them, are rather Gallick (as borrowed from the Gauls) than Greek? He was acquainted with those Greek letters, but did not yet know the Gallick ones, which learned men do think the Greeks took for their Copy, after the Phoenician letters, which were not altogether unlike the Hebrew, were grown out of use. Consult for this Wol [...]gangus Lazius his Celtae, Becanus his Gallica, and if thou hast a mind, Annius his Archilochus, Xenophons Aequivoca, and what others write concerning Li­nus, Cadmus, Palam [...]des, and Simonides, the first Inventors of the Alphabet.

In the mean time take this from me, that those ancient and rude Go­thick Characters, which Bonaventure Vulcanius of Bruges, lately put forth,Vulcan. in app. ad Jor­nand. Goth. Munst. Cosm. l. 4. with a little comentary of one without a name, do very much re­semble the Greek ones (as also the Russian Characters do at this day) and that those which are now Latin letters, were at first brought over into Italy out of Arcadia, along with Nicostrata the Mother of Evander, who was banished his Country.

But that which seems to put the matter out of all dispute, Caesar being about to write to Quintus Cicero, Cas. bell. Gal. l. 5. who was then besieged somewhere in Flanders, among the Nervians, by great rewards perswades a Chevalier, that was a Gaul, to carry the Letter for him: He sends it written in Greek, lest peradventure it being intercepted, the Enemy should come to know their design. To what purpose should he have done this, if that Chevalier, who was a Gaul, or if the Gauls, or if the very Druids themselves, who had the management of State, had been skilled in Greek?

Among the Western Hills of Denbeigh, a County in North-Wales, there is a place, as I read in our famous Chorographer, commonly cal­led Ceregy-Drudion, ‘that is, the Druids Stones, and some small pil­lars are seen at Yvoellas, inscribed with foreign Characters, which some suspect to have been those of the Druids. Who if they have rea­son so to suspect, I would to God, Time, with his rusty teeth, had spa­red those Pillars, that so some light might shine from thence to clear this quarrel

If so be our interpretation of that form of Caesars speaking, which we brought, do not please (as to Strabo's testimony, that respects some­what later times, and perhaps mainly concerns those who lived near the Sea-side) why mayst not thou,Hotoman c. 2. Franco gal­lae. with that great Scholar Francis Hotoman be of opinion, that the word Graecis crept into this Story, either by the carelesness or confidence of Transcribers? For elsewhere in that very Author, where it is said, dextris humeris exertis, Justus Lipsius, the Prince of Criticks, remarks, that the word humeris is plainly redundant, thrust in perchance by the Vamper of that Story,Cas. bell. Gal. l. 7. Julius Celsus.

And what so great a man, of so great a judgment as he was, did cen­sure of those Commentaries of Caesar, in his Book called Electa, or Choice Piece, Lips. Elect. lib. 2. cap. 7. & quast. Epi. [...]olic. l. 2. c. 2. take from himself thus. ‘I see many patches stitched into that Purple; nor doth the expression it self there every where breath to my Nostrils that golden (as I may so say) Gum, or liquid myrrh, of pure antiquity. Read it, read it over again, you will find many things idly [Page 15] said, disjoynted, intricate, vampt, said over and over, that it is not unreasonable to think, but that some Novel and unskilful hand was added to this, as it were, statue of ancient work.’ Therefore we may be easily cheated, if we stand upon such little scruples of words, as we shall meet with in one Julius or other, Caesar or Celsus.

The Druids reckoning of time. An Age consists of thirty Years. What Authors treat of the Druids. Their Doctrines and Customs savour of Pythagoras and the Cabalists. They were the eldest Philosophers and Lawyers among the Gentiles. Some odd Images of theirs in Stone, in an Abby near Voitland, described.

8. ‘THe Druids begun their Months and Years from the sixth Moon (so says Pliny) and that which they called an Age after thePlin. nat. hist. l. 10. c. 44. thirtieth year.’ In the Attick account an Age or Generation, and that of a man in his prime and strength,Plut. de orac. def. Herod. Euterp. was comprized within the same terms, according to the opinion of Heraclitus, Eustath. ad 1. Iliad. and as it is in Herodotus; not had Nestor's triple Age a larger compass, if one may believe Eusta­thius,

Tiberius drove these Druids out of the two Gallia's, Senec. in A­pocol. Claudius banisht them out of Rome, and the worship of the true God Christ, Plin. l. 30. c. 1. sped them out of Britany.

What further appertains to the sacred Rites and Doctrine of the Dru­ids, (not to speak further of Caesar) Strabo, Pliny, Diodorus Siculus, (by the way his Latin Version we do not owe to Poggius of Florence, as the Books published would make us believe,Br. Tuin. Apo­log antiq. Aca­dem. Oxon. l. 3. §. 3. 3 [...]9. but to John Frea formerly Fellow of Baliol Colledge in Oxford, if we may believe an Original Copy in the Library of the said Colledge.) Beside these, Lucan, Pomponius Mela, Ammianus Marcellinus, and very lately Otho Heurnius, in his Antiquities of Barbarous Philosophy, and others have, with sufficient plainness, deli­vered, yet so, that every thing they say savours of Pythagoras (and yet I am ne're a whit the more perswaded that Pythagoras ever taught in Merton-hall at Oxford, or Anaxagor as at Cambridge, as Cantilep and Lidgate have it) I and of the Cabalists too (for John Reuchlin hath compared the discipline of Pythagoras, and that of the Cabalists, as not much unlike.) Whether the Druids, Reuch l. 2. de. arte Cabalist. Lips. [...]to [...]c. physolog l 3. dissert. 12 & vide Forcatu­lum l. 1. de Gall. Imperio. says Lipsius, had their Metempsychosis or transmi­gration of Souls, from Pythagoras, or he from them, I cannot tell.

The very same thing is alike to be said, concerning their Laws, and the Common-wealths which they both of them managed: They have both the same features as like as may be, as it was with Cneius Pompey, and Caius Vibius. For the Samian Philosopher did not only teach those secrets of Philosophy which are reserved, and kept up close in the inner shrine; but also returning from Egypt he went to Croton, a City of Italy, and there gave Laws to the Italians, (my Author is Laertius) and with near upon three hundred Scholars, governed at the rate,Laert. l. 8. & Plut orat [...]le Esu carnium. as it were of an Aristocracy. The Laws of Zale [...]cus and Charondas are commended and had in request. ‘These men, says Seneca, did not in a Hall of Justice,Senec. Epist. 91. nor in an Inns of Court, but in that secret and holy retirement of Py­thagoras, [Page 16] learn those Institutes of Law, which they might propose to Sicily and to Greece, all over Italy, both at that time flourishing.’ That holy and silent recess was perchance borrowed of the Druids: Forasmuch as what Clement of Alexandria witnesses,Clem l. 1. S [...]om. heretofore the more secret and mysterious Arts were derived from the Barbarians to the Greeks.

However the business be, it appears hence plainly, that the Druids were of the oldest standing among the Philosophers of the Gentiles, and the most ancient among their Guardians of Laws. For grant they were of Pythagoras his School, yet even at that rate they are brought back at least to the fiftieth or sixtieth Olympiad, or if thou wilt, to the Tyranny of the Tarquins, which is about two and twenty hundred years ago. 'Tis true, Pliny, Cicero, Austin, Eusebius disagree in this point; nor will I catch that mistake by the handle, which draws him, meaning Pythagoras, back to Numa's time.

To what hath been said, I shall not grudge to subjoyn a Surplage out of Conradus Celtes. He is speaking of some ancient Images of stone, which he had seen in a certain Abby at the foot of a Hill that bears Pines, commonly called Vichtelberg, in the Neighbourhood of Voitland, which he conceives did by way of Statue represent the Druids. ‘They were six in number, says he,Apud P. Me­rulam in Cos­mogr. part 2. lib. 3. at the door of the Temple niched into the Wall, of seven foot apiece in height, bare-footed, having their Heads un­covered, with a Greekish Cloak on, and that Hooded, and a Satchel or scrip by their side, their Beard hanging down to their very Privities, and forked or parted in two about their Nostrils; in their Hands a Book and a Staff like that of Diogenes, with a severe Forehead and a melan­choly Brow, stooping down with their Head, and fastening their Eyes on the ground.’ Which description, how it agrees with those things which are recounted by Caesar and Strabo, concerning the Golden adorn­ments, the dyed and coloured Vestures, the Bracelets, the shaved Cheeks and Chin of the Britans, and other things of the like kind, let them who are concerned look to that.

The Britans and Gauls had Laws and Customs much alike, and whence that came, Some things common to them both, set down; in rela­tion to the breeding of their Children, the Marrying of their Wives, the Governing of their Families, burning Women that killed their Husbands, and burning some Servants with the dead Master for company. Together with some Remarks of their publick Government.

BUt forasmuch as Britanny gave the beginnings and improvements to the discipline of these Druids, and both Britans and Gauls had their Government, Customs, Language, Rites sacred and profane, every thing almost the same, or much alike, as Mr. William Camden hath some while since most learnedly made out,Camden. O Mr. Camden, with what respect shall I name thee!

[Page 17]
In freta dum fluvii current, dum montibus umbrae
Lustrabunt convext, ac dum Cynosura Britannos,
Semper honos, noménque tuum, laudesque manebunt.

Which in hearty English makes this acknowledgment of his worth,

As long as Rivers run into the Main.
Whilst Shades on Mountains shall the Welkin hide,
And Britans shall behold the Northern Wain,
Thy Honour, Name, and Praise shall still abide.

And it is evident, that a great part of Britany was once under the Go­vernment of Divitiacus King of the Soissons, a People of France. There­fore these following Remarks I thought not amiss to set down as British, whether they were imparted to this Isle by the ancient Gauls (by reason of its nearness) or whether the Gauls owed them to the Britans.

9. They do not suffer their Children to come to them in open sight, (they are Caesar's words) but when they are grown up to that Age, that they may be able to undergo Military duty and to serve in War.

10. The men, what mony they receive with their Wives upon ac­count of portion, they lay down so much out of their own Estate upon an appraisement made to make a joint stock with the portion. There is an account jointly kept of all this mony, and the profits of it are re­served; the longer liver is to have both shares, with the profits of the former times.

11. The men have power of life and death over their Wives, as well as over their Children.Bodin. de re­pub. l. 1. c. 4. Hereupon Bodin charges Justinian with a falshood, for affirming that other people had not the same Fatherly power as the Romans had.

‘12. When a Master of a Family, who is of higher birth and quality, dies, his Kindred meet together, that if the manner of his death were suspicious, they may by torture, as Servants were used, examine the Wife concerning the business, and if she be found guilty, they torment her miserably and burn her alive.’ To this story that most excellent Lawyer,In praefat. ad l. 6. Relat. and worthy Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, Sir Ed [...]ward Coke, refers the antiquity of the Law, which we at this day use of devoting to the flames those wicked Baggages, who stain their hands with the nefarious murder of their Husbands.

13. Those Servants and Dependents, who were known to have been beloved by their Master in his life time, were, when the Funeral Rites were prepared, burnt with him for company.

14. It was ordered, that if any one by flying report or common same had heard any thing from the borders, that might concern the Com­mon-wealth, he was to make it known to some Magistrate, and not impart it to any body else.

15. The Magistrates conceal those things they think fit, and what they judge may be of use to the Publick, they discover to the populace.

16. No body has leave to speak of the Common-wealth, or of pub­lick affairs, but in Council or Parliament.

17. They came armed into the Council or to Parliament. So the custom of the Nation was,Lir. lib. 21. saith Livy; and Tacitus, the like of the Ger­mans.

Women admitted to publick debates. A large commendation of the Sex, together with a vindication of their fitness to govern; against the Salick Law, made out by several examples of most Nations.

18. ‘IT was grown a custom amongst them (we meet with this in Plutarch) [...]ut. de vir­ [...]t [...]. mul [...]. that they treated of Peace and War with their wo­men in company, and if any questions arose betwixt them and their Allies, they lest it to them to determine.’ The same custom the Cecro­pians, (that is, the people of Athens) once had, as Austin relates it out of Varro, Aug. de [...]iv. D. [...]i l. 18. c 9. before the women by majority of Vote carried it for Minerva against Neptune.

Away with you, Simonides, and whosoever you are, scoundrels, that unworthily abuse the finer and brighter Sex. Good Angerona, thou Goddess of Silence,Athenaus. wash, nay stop Enbulus his foul mouth, who denies there were ever any good women more than two in the world, to wit, chast Penelope, and Alcestis, who died in her Husbands stead.

How large an honour was paid to the counsels, the prudence, the virtue of the Gaulish Ladies in their chiefest affairs, and not without their desert? How much honour even at this day, is yearly paid at Or­leance, on the eighth of May, to the Statue of Joan Darcy of Lorain, that stands on the bank of the River Loir; Paul. Aemil. hist. Franc. l. 10. who obliged her dear Country with a Victory wonderfully got, when all had been lost.

To pass by other arguments, Antiquity holds this Sex to be equally divine as the Male. In Heaven, Sea, Earth, together with Jupiter, Neptune, Pluto, who were the Gods that shared the world, there go­verned Juno, Salacia, Proserpina, their Goddesses. Marry! in Varro's three fold Divinity, there are more she-Gods than he-Gods.

Ipsa quoque & cultu est,
Ovid. de arte amandi l. 3.
& nomine foemina Virtus.
Virtue her self, howe're it came,
Is Female both in Dress and Name.

But I do not go to act over Caius Agrippa's part, by declaiming upon Female excellency. The thing it self speaks more than I can, and the subject is its own best Orator.

I must add one thing which Cornelius Tacitus tells us of the Britans, Tac. in vlt. A­gric. & Annal. l. 14. ‘that they were wont to war under the conduct of women, and to make no difference of Sex in places of Command and Government.’ Which places yet there are some who stiffiy deny, that Women by right should have the charge of; as being, what Euripides says of them, [...].Eurip. in Me­de [...]. that is,

But ill for the stout feats of War,
Who scarce to look on Iron dare.

[Page 19] But those Authors especially, who, propped up with the Salick Law (as they call it) write, that Males only are by right of inheritance ca­pable of the Government of the French, they do hold and maintain this argument tooth and nail, with all the unkindness and spite as may be to the English Law, which admits of Women to the Throne. They urge, that not only the Laws of Pharamond, but Nature her self is on their side.Bodin. de re­pub. l. 6. c. 5. ‘The Government of women ('tis Bodin of Anjou sayes it) is contrary to the Laws of Nature, which hath bestowed upon men discretion, strength of body, courage and greatness of Spirit, with the power of Rule, and hath taken these things from women.’

But, sweet Mr. Bodin, are not discretion, strength, courage and the arts of Government, more to be desired and required in those who have the Tuition of Kings in their Minority, than in the Kings them­selves till they are come to age? Truly I am of that mind. For why then, pray tell me, did not that reason of yours wring the Guardian­ship of St. Louis out of the hands of the Queen-Mother Blanch? why not out of Isabella's hands under Charles the Sixth? why not of Catha­rine de Medicis, whilst the two Brothers Francis and Charles her Pupils were incircled with the Crown? why not out of the hands of Mary, Louis the Thirteenth being at this very time King?

Were the Jews, that I may go back to stories more ancient, blind, that they could not see the defects of Womens nature, in the Govern­ment of Debora, who triumphed over Sisera, and is sufficiently com­mended in Holy Writ? Were the Italians blind under the Government of the most prudent Amalasincta? Pomp. Mela, l. 1. c. 9. the Halicarnassians, under that of the most gallant Artemisia? the Egyptians, among whom heretofore their Women managed Law-Courts and business abroad, and the men lookt to home and minded huswifery? and the Aethiopians under their Nicaula, whom being very desirous of wisdom, King Solomon, the wisest man that has been ever since the world was, honourably entertain'd? were the Assyrians, under the Government of their magnificent Semiramis? the Massagetes, under that of the revengeful Dame Thomyris? the Palmy­re [...]es, under that of the most chaste Zenobia? and that I may make an end once, under that of other excellent women, all Nations whatever, none excepted but the Franks? who, as Goropius will have it, came to throw off and slight female Government upon this account,Gorop. in Francicis. that in Vespaesian's time they had seen the affairs of their neighbours the Bructeri in East Friseland, whilst that scornful Hag Velleda ruled the roast, came to no good issue.

I do very well know, that our perjured Barons, when they resolved to exclude Queen Mawd from the English Throne, made this shameful pretence, ‘That it would be a shame, for so many Nobles to be subject to a woman.’ And yet you shall not read, that the Iceni (our Essex ­men, &c.) got any shame by that Boadicia, whom Gildas terms a Lio­ness, or that the Brigantes (i. e. York-shire-men, &c.) got any by Char­tismandua. You will read, that they got glory and renown by them both.

Reader, thou canst not here chuse but think of our late Soveraign of Ever Blessed Memory, the Darling of Britan, Q. ELIZABETH, nor canst thou, whosoever thou art, but acknowledge, ‘That there was not wanting to a Woman (what Malmesbury writes of Sexburga the Queen Dowager of Cenwalch King of the West Saxons) a great Spi­rit to discharge the duties of the Kingdom;Malmesb. gest. reg. l. 1. c. 2. she levied new Armies, [Page 20] kept the old ones to duty; she governed her Subjects with Clemency, kept her Enemies quiet with threats; and in a word, did every thing at that rate, that there was no other difference betwixt her and any King in management, but her Sex.’ Of whose (I mean Elizabeths) superlative and truly Royal Vertues a rare Poet, and otherwise a very Learned man, hath sung excellently well,

Si quasdam tacuisse velim,
Connu [...] Ta [...]. & l [...]s.
quamcunque tacebo
Major erit: primos actus veteresque labores
Pros [...]quar? ad sese revocant praesentia mentem.
Justitiam dicam? magis at Clementia splendet.
Victrices referam vires? plus vicit inermis.

'Tis pity these are not well rendred into English. However take them as they are in blank Verse.

Should I in silence some her Uertues pass,
Which e're I so pass o're, will greater be:
Shall I her first deeds and old facts pursue?
Present affairs to them call back my mind.
Shall I her Justice in due numbers sing?
But then her Clemency far brighter shines.
Or shall I her victorious Arms relate?
In peace unarm'd she hath got more to th' State.

What did the Germans our Ancestors? they thought there was in that Sex something of Sanctity and foresight, nor did they slight their coun­sels, nor neglect the answers they gave, when questions were put to them about matters of business; and as Superstition increased, held most of them for Goddesses.

Let him then, whatever dirty fellow it was, be condemned to the Crows (and be hang'd to him) who is not ashamed out of ancient Scrolls, to publish to the world, that they (Women) agree with Soldiers (Bully-Rocks and Hectors) mainly in this, ‘That they are continually very much taken up with looking after their body, and are given to lust, that Souldiers themselves are not, nor endeavour to be more quick and sudden in their Cheats and Over-reachings, that Soldiers deceive people at some distances of time, but women lye alwayes at catch, chouse and pillage their Gallants all the wayes they can; bring them into Consumptions with unreasonable sittings up;’ And other such like mad rude expressions he useth, not unfitting for a Professor in Bedlam Colledge.

Plato allowed Women to govern,Plato de rep. lib. 5. Arist. Polit. l. 1. c. ult. Trismegist. nor did Aristotle, (whatever the Interpreters of his Politicks foolishly say) take from them that privi­ledge. Vertue shuts no door against any body, any Sex, but freely ad­mits all. And Hermes Trismegistus that Thrice great man in his Poe­mander according to his knowledge of Heavenly concerns (and that sure was great in comparison of what the Owl-ey'd Philosophers had) he ascribes the mystical name of Male-Female to the great Understand­ing, to wit, God, the Governour of the Universe.

They (the good women I have been speaking of) from their Cradle (at this rate men commonly talk of them) do too much love to have the Reins of Government, and to be uppermost. Well! be it so, that [Page 21] they do love to govern? and who is it doth not love them? Now a sin and shame be it for Lovers to grudge to their beloved, that which is most desired and wished by them: nor could I forbear out of consci­ence with my suffrage, to assist as far as I could, that Sex, which is so great and comfortable an importance to mankind, so sweet a refresh­ment amidst our sharpest toils, and the vicissitudes of life; and in a word, is the dearest gift that Dame Nature could bestow upon Man.

But let us now return to Caesar's Gauls again.

Their putting themselves under protection by going into great mens ser­vice. Their Coins of money, and their weighing of it. Some sorts of flesh not lawful to be eaten by them.

19. ‘VEry many of them, when they are opprest with Debt or with great Taxes, or with the injurious oppression of great men, put themselves out to service to the Nobles. Over such they have the same Right or Authority, as Masters have over their Ser­vants or Slaves.’

These things following are expresly related also of the Britans themselves.

20. ‘They use Brass Coin or Rings (some read it, Plates) of Iron proportion'd to a certain weight, instead of money. But, (saith Soli­nus, a more modern Historian) they dislike and disallow of Markets or Fairs or Money;Solin. Poly­hist. cap. 35. they give and take Commodities by way of Barter.’

Camden is of opinion, that the custom of Coining Money, came in along with the Romans among the Cattieuchlani, that is, the people of Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire and Hartfordshire. He takes notice out of William the Conqueror's Book of Rates or Dooms-Day Book (which is seasonable to mention upon this Head of Coins) that as amongst the old Romans, so amongst our Ancestors, money was weighed (as Ger­vase of Tilbury also tells us) and so told out and paid down. Now they paid Customs to the Romans; and for this purpose they had Coins stamped and marked with various shapes of living Creatures and Ve­getables,V. Plut. quaest. centuriat. Rom. 41. which ever and anon are digged up out of the ground. And we read in a very ancient Chronicle of the Monastery of Abendon, which had two Kings Cissa and Ina for its founders, that at the laying the first foundations,Br. Tuin. apo­log. Oxon. l. 2. §▪ 77. there were found very old Coins engraven with the Pi­ctures of Devils and Satyrs. One may very well suppose them to be British Coins.

21. ‘They do not think it lawful to taste of the flesh of Hare,V. Plut. Sym­pos. l. 4. c. 5. or Hen, or Goose, and yet they keep these Creatures for pleasure and divertisement sake.’ Why they forbore only Hare, and Hen, and Goose, I am not able to give the reason. I perceive something of Py­thagoras, Laert. l. 8. and something of the Jewish Discipline mixt. For that Philo­sopher of Samos abstained from the eating of Flesh,Plut. symp. l. 8. c. 8. not in general from all, but with a certain choice from that of some particular Creatures.

Community of Wives among the Britans, used formerly by other Nati­ons also. Chalcondylas his mistake from our Civil Custom of Saluting. A rebuke of the foolish humour of Jealousie.

22. ‘THey have ten or twelve of them Wives in common amongst them, and especially Brothers with Brothers, and Fathers with their Sons, but what children are born of such Mothers, they are fathered upon them by whom they were first lain with, when they were Maids.’ O villany and strange confusion of the rights of Nature! ‘Dii meliora piis,Georgic. 3. erroremque hostibus istum!’ which in Christian English speaks thus.

Good God! For th' pious better things devise,
Such Ill as this I wish not t' Enemies.

However let not this Platonick community of Wives be more reproach to the Britans, than that promiscuous Copulation which was used by the Thuscans, and before Cecrops his time (who for appointing Marri­age, that is, joyning one Man and one Woman together, was termed [...], i.e. as one may say Two-shaped) by the Athenians, Athen. dip. nos. l. 12. & 13. Suid. in [...] Euseb. prae­par. Evang. l. 6. (as Theopompus, Suidas and Athenaeus report it) was to them. Besides, Eusebius in his Evangelical Preparation writes, that our people for the most part were contented with one single Marriage.

Did not, may one think, Chalcondylas mistake Caesar's meaning, who a hundred years ago and upwards setting himself to write History at Athens, and peradventure over-carelesly drawing ancient Customs down to the last Age, ventured to affirm of the Britans his Contempo­raries, ‘That when any one upon invitation enters the house of a friend,Apud Abrah. O [...]tel. in The­at. Mundi. the Custom is, that he first lye with his friends Wife, and af­ter that he is kindly entertained?’ Or did that officious kiss, the Ear­nest of welcome, which is so freely admitted by our Women from strangers and guests, which some take particular notice of as the cu­stom of our Countrey,Munsler. Bo­ëmus, &c. put a trick upon Chalcondylas, and bring him into that mistake? [...].Theocr. Ei­dyll. 3. sayes Theocritus of old, that is, ‘In empty kisses there is swéet delight.’ [Page 17] And, ‘Qui vult cubare,Plau. [...]. pangit saltem suavium,’ sayes the Servant in Plautus,

He that would a woman win,
With a kiss he doth begin.

And that other fellow,

Quaero deinde illecebr [...]m stupri,Id. Amphitr. principio eam suavium posco. And

Et jam illud non placet principium de osculo, Id. Casinâ. sayes jealous Amphitruo to his wife Alcumena. And Agesilaus mistrusting his wanton Genius, refu­sed the buss or salute of a handsome beautiful youth.Plut. de aud. Poct. For as he sayes, ‘—Parva leves capiunt animos,Ovid. de art. am. l. 1. that is,

Small matters kindle the desire▪
And a loose Spirit's soon on fire.

This our Grecian knew well enough, and perchance thought of that unlucky hint,

—Si non & caetera sumpsit,
Haec quoque, quae sumpsit, perdere dignus erat.

Moreover,Bald. l. 5. consil. 78. Alber. Gentil de nupt. l. 2. c. 13. that great Philosopher of Lawyers Baldus, hath set it down for a rule, that the Fathers consent and betrothal is ratified and made good by the Daughters admitting the Wooer to kiss her. Which point of Law it would be very ridiculous to imagine should concern us, with whom both Maids and married Women do easily afford, and civilly too, them that salute them a kiss, not such as Catullus speaks of Billing like Doves, hard Busses or wanton Smacks, but slight modest chaste ones, and such as Sisters give to Brothers. These civilities, when omitted, are alwayes signs of Clownishness; when afforded, seldom are account­ed signs of Whorishness. Nor do the Husbands in this case (unless it be perhaps some Horn mad-Cuckold) with a wrinkled Forehead shake their Bull-feathers, or so much as mistrust any thing as upon jealousie of this custom.

It may be Chalcondylas being a little pur-blind, saw these passages as it were through a grated Lattice, and made ill use of his mistake: I mean, whilst he compared our Britans, who upon a Matrimonial confidence trust their Mates honesty, with the jealous Italians, Venetians, Spaniards, and even his own Countrey-men. Which people, it is a wonder to me, they should so warily, with so much diligence and mistrust set pin­folds, cunning Spies and close attendance, Locks and Keys, and Bats and Bolts upon their Madonna's Chastity (most commonly in my conscience all to no purpose) when that which he has said is as good as Oracle, though a wanton one.

[Page 24]
Quod licet,
Orid. amor. l 2. clep. 19. Id. l. 3. cleg. 4. ld. de remed. amor. l. 2.
ingratum est: quod non licet, acriùs urit.
Ferreus est, siquis, quod siuit alter, amat.
Siqua, metu dempto, casta est, ea denique casta est:
Quae, quia non liceat, non facit, illa facit.
Qui timet, ut sua sit, nequis sibi subtrahat illam;
Ille Machaoniâ vix ope sanus erit.

In English thus,

What's frée, 's unpleasant; what's not, moves desire.
He's thick skull'd, who doth things allow'd admire.
Who, fear aside, is chaste, she's chaste indéed;
Who, cause she can't, forbears, commits the deed.
Who's Wife mistrusts, and plays the jealous Whelp,
Is mad beyond Physicians art and help.

Who does not know, that Natures byass runs to things forbidden? and he who attempts unlawful things, does more often lose those which are lawful. Marry! that free usage of the hot Baths of Baden in Ger­many, Men and Women together, is much safer than being jealous.

—Quis non bonus omnia malit
Virg. in Ceiri.
quàm tanto sceleri damnare puellam?

That is,

What good man would not take all in best sense,
Rather by living undisturb'd and frée;
Than by distrustful foolish Jealousie
His Lady force to quit her Innocence?

But we have taken that pains upon a thing by the By, as if it were our proper business.

An account of the British State under the Romans. Claudius wins a Battel, and returns to Rome in Triumph, and leaves A. Plautius to order affairs. A Colony is sent to Maldon in Essex, and to several other places. The nature of these Colonies out of Lipsius. Julius Agricola's Government here in Vespasian's time.

JVlius Caesar gave a sight of Britanny to posterity,Malmesb. de [...] gest. reg. l. 1. c. 1. rather than made a full discovery or a delivery of it. However Malmsbury sayes, ‘that he compelled them to swear obedience to the Latin Laws,’ certainly he did scarce so much as abridge the inhabitants from the free use of their own Laws; for the very Tributes that were imposed upon them, they in a short time shook off, by revolting from the Roman yoke. The same liberty they used and enjoyed to all intents and purposes during Au­gustus, Tiberius and Caligula's Reigns.

[Page 25] Aulus Plautius as General by order of Claudius Caesar, brought an Ar­my into Britany. Dio hist. Rom. l. 60. [...] (so saith Dio) [...] that is, The inhabitants at that time were subject to divers Kings of their own. He overcame in battel Prince Cradock and Togodunus the two Sons of King Cunobellinus; afterwards Claudius himself came over into the Island, fought a set battel; and having obtained the Victory, he took Maldon in Essex, the Royal City of Cunobellinus, disarmed the inhabi­tants, left the government of them, and the subduing of the rest of the people to Plautius, and went back himself to Ro [...]e, where he was ho­noured with a most splendid and stately Triumph. For this was he, of whom Seneca the Tragoedian speaks:

Cuique Britanni terga dedêre,
Senec. in Octav. act.
Ducibus nostris ante ignoti,
Jurisque sui.—

which may be thus Englished,

To whom bold Britans turn'd their back,
T' our Captains formerly unknown,
And govern'd by Laws of their own.

The Island being reduced great part under the Romans power, and into a Lieutenancy, a Colony is brought down to Maldon (in Essex) as Tacitus and Dio has it, with a strong party of Veterans,Tac. annal. l. 12. Dio hist. l. 60. and is planted up and down in the Countrey they had taken, ‘as a supply against those that would rebel, and to train up their fellows or Allies to the duties of the Laws.’ And old Stone speaks thus of that Colony, ‘CN. MUNATIUS M. F. PAL. AURELIUS.Camden. & Lips. ad l. 12. Tac. num. 75. BASSUS PROC. AUG. PRAEF. FABRO. PRAEF. COH. III. SA­GITARIORUM. PRAEF. COH. ITERUM. II. ASTURUM. CENSITOR. CIVIUM. ROMANORUM. COLONIAE. VICTRI­CENSIS. QUAE. EST. IN. BRITANNIA. CAMALODUNI.’ Besides, there was a Temple built and dedicated to Claudius Ara (or as Lipsius reads it Arra) Aeternae dominationis; that is, the Altar or Earnest of an eternal Government. But you will say, all this makes little to our purpose: yes, very much; as that which brings from abroad the Roman Orders, Laws, Fashions, and every thing into Britany. Near St. Albans, a Town in Hartfordshire, there was sure enough the seat of Cassibellinus called Verulams, Agell. l. 16. c. 13. and the Burghers, as we learn from Agel­lius, were Citizens of Rome infranchized, out of their Corporations, using their own Laws and Customs, only partaking the same honorary priviledge with the people of Rome: but we have the Colony of Maldon in Essex, which upon another nearer account had all the Rights and Orders of the people of Rome derived to it from the freedom of that City, and was not at its own disposal, or to use its own Laws. And [Page 24] [...] [Page 25] [...] [Page 26] the like was practised in this Island in more than one place. The Reverse of Sev [...]rus the Emperours Coyn shews it. ‘COL. EBORACUM. LEG. VI. VICTRIX.Can [...]len. and the Coyn of Septimius Geta on either side. ‘COL. DIVANA. LEG. XX. VICTRIX.’ This old Divana (which is the very same with Deunana in Ptolomy) if you make it English, is Chester the chief City of the Cornavians, that is, the people of Cheshire, Staffordshire, Shropshire, &c. Again, there is a piece of and old Stone in the Walls of Bath in Somersetshire near the North Gate has this Inscription upon it, ‘DEC. COLONIAE. GLEV. VIXIT. ANN. LXXXVI.’

Glevum was that then which Glocester is now.Colonia ca­s [...]ri, whence the River cal­led Coln. Senec. ad Alb. c. 7. It may be Colchester had the same right of priviledge, unless you had rather derive its name from the River Coln that runs aside it. In a word (sayes Seneca to Al­bina) ‘How many Colonies has this people of ours sent into all Pro­vinces? Where ever the Roman conquers, he dwells.’ See what abundance there was of them in British Province; whose form of Go­vernment, and other Laws, that they were different from that of the Britans, we may plainly perceive from that very form of their constitu­tion after their detachment; which I shall present you with out of that famous Antiquary, and every way most Learned and Celebrious person Justus Lipsius.

Their manner and method was (sayes he) ‘That the Lands should be divided to man by man, and that by three grave discreet persons, whom they used to chuse for this purpose,Lips. de mag. Rom. l. 1. c. 5. who did set out their par­ticular Seats and Grounds, and the Town it self (if there were one to be built) and prescribed them Rules and Rights, and the form as it were of a new Common-wealth: Yet in that manner, that all things might bear a resemblance of Rome and the Mother City; and that in the very places themselves the Courts of Law, the Capitols, the Temples, the State-houses or Town-halls might be according to that model, and that there might be in the Government or Magistracy two persons as Bailiffs in most places, like the two Consuls at Rome; in like manner Surveyors and Scavengers, Aldermen of the Wards and Headboroughs, instead of a Senate or Common Council as we may call it.’ Gild. in Epist. de excid. Brit. This is Lipsius his account; so that Beatus Gildas is not much out of the way, when he sayes, it was reckoned not Britannia, but Romania. And an ancient Copy of Verses, which Joseph Scaliger has rescued out of its rust and mouldiness, has it:

Mars pater, & nostrae gentis tutela Quirine,
Et magno positus Caesar uterque polo;
Cernitis ignotos Latiâ sub Lege Britannos, &c.

[Page 27] that is, in English,

Sire Mars, and Guardian of our State
Quirinus hight after thy fate,
And Caesars both plac'd near the Pole
With your bright Stars ye do behold,
And th' unknown Britans aw,
T' observe the Roman Law.

The stately Seraglio or Building for the Emperours Women at Venta Noti [...]ia Pro­vine. Belgarum (a City at this day called Winchester) and other things of that kind I let pass.

In the time of the Emperours V [...]spasian, Titus and Domitian, Julius Agricola, Tacitus his Wives Father, was Lord Deputy Lieutenant here.Tacit. vit. Agric. He encouraged the Barbarous people to Civil fashions, insomuch that they took the Roman habit for an honour, and almost every body wore a Gown; and as Juvenal has it in his Satyr, ‘Gallia Causidicos docuit facunda Britannos.Juvenal. Sat. 6.

The British Lawyers learnt of yore,
From the well-spoken French their lore:
T' imply, hereafter we should sée
Our Laws themselves in French would be.

In Commodus his time King Lucy embraces the Christian Religion, and desires Eleutherius then Pope, to send him the Roman Laws. In stead of Heathen Priests, he makes three Arch-Bishops and twenty eight Bishops. He endows the Churches, and makes them Sanctuaries. The manner of Government in Constantine's time, where ends the Roman account.

IN Commodus the Emperours time the Light of the Gospel shone afresh upon the Britans. Lucius the first King of the Christians (for the Romans, as in other places, so in Britany, made use of even Kings for their instruments of slavery) by the procurement of Fugatius and Damianus Pla [...]n. in vi [...]. Eleutherii. did happily receive from Pope Eleutherius the Seal of Regeneration (that is, Baptism) and the Sacred Laws of eternal salvation. He had a mind also to have the Civil Laws thence, and desired them too. Ovid long since had so prophesied of Rome: ‘Juráque ab hàc terrâ caetera terra petet.Ovid. Fast. l. 1. that is,

And from this Countrey every other Land
Their Laws shall fetch, and be at her command.

[Page 28] Now Eleutherius wrote him this answer: ‘You have desired of us,Jo. Fox Hist. Eccles. l. 1. that the Roman and Caesarean Laws may be sent over to you; that you may, as you desire, use them in your Kingdom of Britanny. The Ro­man and Caesarean Laws we may at all times disprove of, but by no means the Laws of God. For you have lately through Divine mercy taken upon you in the Kingdom of Britanny the Law and Faith of Christ; you have with you in the Kingdom both pages of Holy Writ, (to wit, the Old and New Testament). Out of them, in the name and by the favour of God, with the advice of your Kingdom, take your Law, and by it through Gods permission, you may govern your Kingdom of Britanny. Now you for your part are Gods Vicegerent in your Kingdom.’

Howsoever by injury of time the memory of this great and Illustrious Prince King Lucy hath been imbezill'd and smuggled, this upon the credit of the ancient Writers appears plainly, that the pitiful fopperies of the Pagans, and the Worship of their Idol-Devils did begin to flag, and within a short time would have given place to the Worship of the true God, and that Three Arch-Flamens and Twenty Eight Flamens, i. e. Arch-Priests, being driven out, there were as many Arch-Bishops and Bishops put into their rooms (the Seats of the Arch-Bishops were at London, at York and at Caerleon in Wales) ‘to whom, as also to other Religious persons, the King granted Possessions and Territories in abundance, and confirmed his Grants by Charters and Patents. But he ordered the Churches (as he of Monmouth and Florilegus tell us) to be so free, that whatsoever Malefactor should fly thither for refuge, there he might abide secure, and no body hurt him.’

In the time of Constantine the Emperour (whose Pedigree most people do refer to the British and Royal Blood) the Lord President of France was Governour of Britanny. Zofim. l. 2. He together with the rest, those of Illyri­cum or Slavonia, of the East and of Italy, were appointed by the Empe­rour. In his time the Lord Deputy of Britanny, Notlt. Pro­vinc. utr. Imper. l. 1. comm. c. 5. & l. 2. comm. Pancit. c. 69. (whose Blazonry was a Book shut with a green Cover) was honoured with the Title of Spe­ctabilis. There were also under him two Magistrates of Consular Dig­nity, and three Chief Justices (according to the division of the Province into five parts) who heard and determined Civil and Criminal Causes.

And here I set up my last Pillar concerning the Britans and the Roman Laws in Britanny, so far forth as those Writers which I have, do supply me with matter.

The Saxons are sent for in by Vortigern against the Scots and Picts, who usurping the Government, set up the Heptarchy. The Angles, Jutes, Frisons, all called Saxons. An account of them and their Laws, taken out of Adam of Bremen.

AFterwards the Scots and Picts making incursions on the North, and daily havock and waste of the Lands of the Provincials, (that is, those who were under the Roman Government) they send to desire of the Romans some Auxiliary Forces. In the mean time, Rome by a like misfortune, was threatned with imminent danger, by the fury of the Goths: all Italy was in a fright, in an uproar. For the maintaining of whose liberty, the Empire being them more then sinking, was with all its united strength engaged and ready prepared. So this way the Britans met with a disappointment. Wherefore Vortigern, who was Gover­nour in Chief, sent for supplies from the neighbouring Germans, and invited them in. But according to the Proverb, Carpathius leporem; He caught a Tartar: for he had better have let them alone where they were. Upon this account, the Saxons, the Angles, the Jutes, the Fries­landers arrive here in their Gally-Foists in the time of Theodosius the younger. At length being taken with the sweetness of the soil (a great number of their Countrey-men flocking over after them, as there were at that time fatal flittings and shiftings of quarters all the World over) and spurred on with the desire of the chief command and rule, having struck up a League with the Picts, they raise a sad and lamentable War against their new entertainers, in whose service they had lately receiv­ed pay: and to make short, in the end having turned the Britans out of their Ancestors Seats they advanced themselves into an Heptarchy of En­gland, so called from them.

Albeit they pass by various names, yet in very deed they were all of them none other but Saxons. A name at that time of a large extent in Germany; which was not, as later Geographers make it, bounded with the Rivers of the Elb, of the Rhine and the Oder, and with the Con­fines of Hessen and Duringen, and with the Ocean; but reached as far as into the Cimbrian Chersonesus now called Jutland. It is most likely, that those of them that dwelt by the Sea-side, came over by Ship into Bri­tanny. To wit, at first Hors [...]s and Hengistus came over out of Batavia, or the Low Countreys, with a great company of Saxons along with them; after that out of Jutland the Jutes (for Janus Douza proves,Ja. Douz. an­nal. Holland. l. 1. & 6. that the Danes under that appellation seised our Shores, in the very begin­ning of the Saxon Empire:) out of Angela, according to Camden about Flemsburg a City of Sleswick, Procop. bell. Goth. l. 4. came the Angles; out of Friseland (Proco­pius is my Author) the Frizons. One may without any wrong call them all Saxons; unless Fabius Quastor Aethelwerd also did his Nation injury, by calling them so. He flourished Six hundred and fifty years ago,Aethelwerd. lib. 1. fo. 474. being the Grand-child or Nephew of King Aethelulph, and in his own words discourses, ‘That there was also a people of the Saxons all along the Sea-coast from the River Rhine up to the City Donia, which is now commonly called Denmark. For it is not proper here to think [Page 30] of Denmark in the neighbouring Territories of Vtrecht and Amsterdam, by reason of the narrowness of that tract.

Those few Observes then,Adam Brem. hist. eccles. Brem. & Ham­burg. c. 5. ex bibliothecâ Henr. Ranzo­vii. which Adam of Bremen hath copied out of Einhard concerning the Saxons, forasmuch as our Ancient Saxons I sup­pose, are concerned in them, I here set down in this manner and order.

The Saxons division of their people into four ranks. No person to mar­ry out of his own rank. What proportion to be observed in Mar­riages according to Policy. Like to like the old Rule. Now Matrimony is made a matter of money.

23. THe whole Nation consists of four different degrees or ranks of men; to wit, ‘of Nobles, of Free-men born, of Free-men made so,Nithard. l. 4. and of Servants or Slaves.’ And Nithard speaking of his own time, has divided them into Ethelings, that is, Nobles, Frilings, that is, Free-men, and Lazzos, that is, Servants or Slaves.

It was enacted by Laws, ‘That no rank in cases of Matrimony do pass the bounds of their own quality; but that a Noble-man marry a Noble-woman, a Free-man take a Free-woman, a Bond-man made Free be joyned to a Bond-woman of the same condition, and a Man-servant match with a Maid-servant.’ And thus in the Laws of Henry Duke of Saxony, Emperour Elect, concerning Justs and Tournaments, ‘When any Noble-man had taken a Citizen or Countrey-woman to Wife, he was forbid the exercise of that sport to the third Genera­tion, as Sebastian Munster relates it.’ Munst. Cos­ [...]og. l. 3. The Twelve Tables also forbad the marriage of the Patricii or Nobles with the Plebeians or Commons; which was afterwards voided and nulled by a Law which Canuleius made, when he was Tribune of the people. For both Politicians and Lawyers are of opinion, That in marriages we should make use of not an Arithmetical proportion, which consists of equals; nor of a Geome­trical one, which is made up of likes; but of a Musical one, which pro­ceeds from unlike notes agreeing together in sound. Let a Noble-man that is decayed in his estate, marry a Commoner with a good fortune; if he be rich and wealthy, let him take one without a fortune: and thus let Love, Plut. in sym­pos. which was begot betwixt Wealth and Poverty, suite this unlikeness of conditions into a sweet harmony; and thus this disagree­ing agreement will be fit for procreation and breed. For he had need have a good portion of his own, and be nearer to Crassus than Irus in his fortunes, who, by reason of the many inconveniencies and intolerable charges of Women, which bring great Dowries, doth, with Megadorus in Plautus, Plaut. [...]n Au­lul. act. 3. court a Wife without a Portion; according to that which Mar­tial sayes to Priscus:

[Page 31]
Vxorem quare locupletem ducere nolim
Martial. l. 8. Epig. 12.
Quaeritis? Vxori nubere nolo meae.
Inferior Matrona suo sit, Prisce, Marito:
Non aliter fiunt foemina virque pares.

Which at a looser rate of Translation take thus,

Should I a Wife with a great fortune wed,
You'l say, I should be swéetly brought to bed.
Such fortune will my Liberty undo.
Who brings Estate, will wear the Bréeches too.
Unhappy match! where e're the potent Bride
Hath the advantage wholly on her side.
Blest pairs! when the Men sway, the Women truckle,
There's good agréement, as 'twixt Thong and Buckle.

And according to that of the Greek Poet, ‘— [...].Callimach. epig. 1.

Take, if you'l be rul'd by me,
A Wife of your own degrée.

But there is little of our Age fashioned to the model of this sense: Height of Birth, Vertue, Beauty, and whatsoever there was in Pandora of Good and Fair,Plaut. in As [...] ­nar. do too too often give place to Wealth; and that I may use the Comedians word, to a Purse crammed with Money. And as the merry Greek Poet sayes,

Anacreon. carm. [...].

To be Noble or high-born,
Is no argument for Love:
Good Parts of Bréeding lye forlorn;
'Tis Money only they approve.

I come back now to my friend Adam.

The Saxons way of judging the Event of War with an Enemy. Their manner of approving a proposal in Council, by clattering their Arms. The Original of Hundred-Courts. Their dubbing their Youth into Men. The priviledge of young Lads Nobly born. The Morganheb or Wedding-dowry.

24. ‘THey take a Prisoner of that Nation,Et Tacit. with which they are to have a War, by what way soever they can catch him, and chose out one of their own Countrey-men; and putting on each of them the Arms of their own Countrey, make them two fight toge­ther, and judge of the Victory, according as the one or the other of them shall overcome.’ This very thing also Tacitus himself hath, to whom Einhard sends his Reader. For though he treat in general of the Germans, yet nevertheless without any question, our Saxons brought over along with them into this Island very many of those things, which are delivered to us by those who have wrote concerning the Customs of the Germans. Among which, take these following.

25. ‘In Councils or publick Assemblies, the King or Prince, (i. e. a chief person) according as every ones Age is, according to his Nobi­lity, according to his Reputation in Arms, according to his Eloquence, has audience given him, where they use the authority of perswading, rather than the power of commanding. If they dislike what he sayes, they disapprove it with a Hum and a rude noise. If they like the proposal, they shake and rustle their Spears or Partisans together. It is the most honourable kind of assent, to commend the Speaker with the clattering of their Arms.’ From hence perhaps arose the ancient right of Wapentakes.

26. ‘There are also chosen at the same Councils or Meetings, chief persons (as Justices) to administer Law in the several Villages and Hamlets. Each of those have a hundred Associates out of the Com­monalty for their Counsel and Authority.’ This is plainly the pour­traict of our Hundreds, which we still have throughout the Counties of England.

27. ‘They do nothing of publick or private affair, but with their Arms on; but it is not the custom for any one to wear Arms, before the City or Community approve of him as sufficient for it. Then in the Council it self, either some one of the Princes or chief persons, or the Father of the young man or some Kinsman of his in token of respect, give him a Shield and a Partisan. This with them stands for the Ceremony of the Gown; this the first honour of youth arriving at manhood; before this be done, they seem but a part of the Fami­ly:’ but after this is over, they are a part of the Common-wealth. The right ancient pattern of dubbing Knights, if any where else to be found.Cas. de bell. Gall. l. 6. Julius Caesar sayes almost the very same thing of the Gauls. ‘They do not suffer their Children, to come in publick to them, till they be come to Age, that they be able to undergo the Duties of War.’

[Page 33] 28. ‘A remarkable Nobleness of descent, or the high merits of their Fathers, procure even to young Lads the dignity and esteem of a Prince.’ Senec. de be­nefic. l. 4. c. 30. For, as the Philosopher sayes, We owe this regard to Ver­tues, that we respect them, not only whilst present, but also when they are taken away out of our sight; and in the Wife mans account,Proverb. 1 [...]. The glory of Parents, is the honour of their Children.

29. ‘The Wife doth not bring the Husband a Portion, but the Husband gives the Wife a Dowry. ’Contrary to what the Roman Law saith, That custom is still in use with the English, as Morgangheb in other places.

Their severe punishments of Adultery, by maiming some parts of the body. The reason of it given by Bracton. The like practised by Danes and Normans.

30. ‘THe Husband if his Wife playes the Whore, cuts off her hair, strips her naked, and turns her out of doors in presence of her Kindred, and drives her through the Streets, lashing or beating her as she goes along.’ They were formerly in this Northern part of the World, most severe punishers of Adultery, and they ahd such Laws as were ‘—ipsis Marti Venerique timenda;Juvenal. S [...]. that is, such as would

Put Mars and Venus in a trance
Of fear, amidst their dalliance.

King Knute ordered,Canut. leg. can. 50. That a Wife, who took another Passenger on board her than her Husband, and [...].’

Oft times ith' nights away she hies,
And into other harbour flyes.

(Well speed thee and thine, fair Venus; nor do I willingly bring these ill tidings to thy tender Ducklings.) should have her Nose and ears cut off.

I remember,Odyss. 18. & 22. Antinous in Homer threatens Irus with the chopping off his Nose, Ears and Privities; and Vlysses inflicts that very punishment upon his Goat-herd Melanthius, for his having been too officious in his pimping attendance upon the Gallants, that haunted the house in his absence. How any one should deserve this penalty, which so disfigures Nature, I do not yet sufficiently understand.

[Page 34] Heraclid [...]s Ponticus informs us,In Allegoriis [...]omeric. That Law-makers were wont to maim that part especially which committed the misdemeanour. In testimony of this, he mentions Tytius his Liver as the Shop and Work-house of Lust; and it were not hard matter to bring in other more pertinent in­stances; and ‘Pereant partes, quae nocuere.’ saith some Poet,

The parts that did the hurt,
Let them e'en suffer for't.

However it was not Melanthius his Ears, and by no means his Nose that offended; no nor the good Wives neither that commits the fact: as Martial the merry Wag tells a certain Husband,

Quis tibi persuasit nares abscindere moecho?
Martial. l. 3. Epig. 43.
Non hàc peccata est parte, marite, tibi.

that is, with modesty to render it,

What made thee, angry man, to cut
The Nose of him, that went to rut?
'Twas not that part, that did th' offence:
Therefore to punish that, what sense?

But who doth not see, that a Woman hath no other parts of her body so lyable to maiming or cutting off? Both those parts make much for the setting her off; nor are there any others in the whole outward frame of the Microcosm, which being cut off, do either more disparage beauty, or withal less afflict the animal vertue, as they call it, by which life is maintain'd. Now for those, who of old time did unlucki­ly, that is, without the favour of those Heathen Gods Prema and Muti­nus, to whose service they were so addicted, offer violence to untain­ted chastity; ‘the loss of members did await the lust of such persons, that there might be member for member’ (they are the words of Hen­ry Bracton, Bracton. de Coronâ l. 3. c. 28. a very ancient Writer of our Law, and they are clear testi­monies, that the English have practised the Law of like for like) quia virgo, cùm corrumpitur, membrum amittit, & ideò corruptor puniatur in eo in quo deliquit: An. 18 Ed. 3. fol. 20. à Bri­ton. cap. 25. oculos igitur amittat propter aspectum decoris, quo virgi­nem concupivit; amittat & testiculos, qui calorem stupri induxerunt. So long ago,

Aut linguam aut oculos aut quae tibi membra pudorem
Ovid. Meta­mor. l. 7.
Abstulerant, ferro rapiam.

sayes Progne to her Sister Philomele, speaking of the filthy Villain Te­reus, who had ravished her,

I'le cut out his eyes or tongue,
Or those parts which did thée the wrong.

[Page 35] and Plautus in his Play called Paenulus, Sy. Facio quod manifesto moechi haud ferme solent. Mi. Ruid id est? Sy. Referovasa salva.

I remember I have read that Jeoffry de Millers a Nobleman of Norfolk, Matth. Parls in H. 3. pag. 1000. for having inticed the Daughter of John Briton to an Assignation, and ingaged her with venereal pledges; being betrayed and trepann'd by the Baggage, underwent this execution; and suffered besides, whatso [...]ver a Fathers fury in such a case would prompt him to do: But withal, that King Henry the third was grievously offended at it, dis-inherited Briton, banished him,Vid. l. 2. art. 8. and gave order by Proclamation, that no one should pre­sume, unless it were in his Wives case, to do the like. But these passa­ges are of later date, and since the Normans time and from them; unless you will bring hither that which we meet with in Alured's Law concern­ingAlured. leg. can. 25. a Man and a Maid-servant.

From whence we slide back again to Tacitus.

The manner of Inheriting among them. Of deadly Feuds. Of Wer­gild or Head-mony for Murder. The Nature of Country-Tenures and Knights Fees.

31. ‘EVery ones Children are their Heirs and Successors, and there was no Will to be.’ Nor was it lawful with us down to our Grandfathers time, to dispose of Country Farms or Estates by Will, un­less it were in some Burroughs, that had a peculiar Right and Priviledge of their own. ‘If there be no Children, then, says he, the next of kin shall inherit;’ Brethren, or Uncles by the Fathers or Mothers side. Those of the ascending Line are excluded from Inheritances, and here appears the preference of the Fathers side: A Law at this very day usual with the English.

32. ‘To undertake the Enmities rather than the Friendships, whether of ones Father or Kinsman, is more necessary.’ Capital enmities, which they call Deadly Feuds, are well known to our Northern people. ‘Nor do they hold on never to be appeased: For even Murder is expia­ted by a certain number of some head of Cattel, and the whole Family of the murdered Person receives satisfaction.’ Murders formerly were bought off with Head-mony called [...]; though one had killed a Nobleman, nay the King himself, as we may see in Athelstan's Constitu­tions: But good manners, I suppose, have prevailed above Laws.

33. ‘The Lord imposes upon his Tenant a certain quantity of Corn or Cattel, or Clothes.’ We see here clearly enough the nature of Coun­try Land-holders, Fees or Tenures. As to military or Knights Fees, give me leave to set that down too.Dion. Halic. lib. 1. Flor. Hist. Rom. l. 3. c. 3. Lamprld. V. Bodin. de rep. l. 2. c. 2. & Franc. Ho­tom. disp. [...]eud. cap. 2. Dionysius Halicarnasseus gives us a very ancient draught and model of them in the Trojans and Aborigines: Florus in the Cymbrians, and Lampridius in Alexander Severus. Both the Nor­thern people and the Italians do owe them to the Huns and Lombards; but these later according to a more modern form.

Let these things suffice out of Cornelius Tacitus, which belong to this Head.

Since the return of Christianity into the Island, King Ethelbert's Law against Sacriledge. Thieves formerly amerced in Cattel. A blot upon Theodred the Good, Bishop of London, for hanging Thieves. The Country called Engelond by Order of King Eg­bert, and why so called. The Laws of King Ina, Alfred, E­thelred, &c. are still to be met with in Saxon. Those of Ed­ward the Confessor, and King Knute the Dane, were put forth by Mr. Lambard in his Archaeonomia.

BEfore that the Christian Doctrine had driven out and banished the Saxon Idolatry, all these things I have hitherto been speaking of, were in use. Ethelbert (he that was the first King, not only of Kent, but of all England, except Northumberland) having been baptized by Au­stin the Monk, the Apostle, as some call him, of the English) ‘amongst other good things which by Counsel and Grant he did to his Nation, ('tis venerable Bede speaks these words) he did also with the advice of wise men,Bed. hist. Ec­cles. l. 2. c. 5. appoint for his peoples use the orders of their proceedings at Law, according to the examples of the Romans. Which having been written in the English tongue (says he) are hitherto, or to this time kept and observed by them. Among which orders or decrees he set down in the first place, after what manner such an one should make amends, who should convey away by stealth any of those things that belonged to the Church, or to a Bishop, or to the rest of the Orders.’ In the Laws of some that came after him, as those of King Alured (who cull'd out of Ethelbert's Acts to make up his own) and those of King Athelstan, Thieves make satisfaction with mony; accordingly as Tacitus says of the Germans, ‘That for lighter offences those that were convicted are at the rate of their penalties amerced such a number of Horses or other Cattel.’ For,Fest. verbo Pecul. & ver­bo Ovibus. as Festus hath it, before Brass and Silver were coyned, by ancient custom they were fined for their faults so much Cattel: But those who medled with any thing sacred, we read had that hand cut off with which they committed the theft.

Well! but am I mistaken,V. Inae leg. cap. 13. or was Sacriledge even in the time of the Saxon Government punisht as a Capital crime? There is a passage of William of Malmsbury, Malmsb. de gest. Pontif. l. 1. in his Book de Gestis Pontificum, that inclines me to think so. Speaking of Theodred, the Bishop of London when Athelstan was King,Ranulph. Higden in Po­lychron. Joan. Car [...]o­tensis de nugis curial. l. 6. c. 17. he says, ‘That he had among the common people got the sirname of Theodred the Good; for the eminence of his virtues: Only in one thing he fell short, which was rather a mistake than a crime, that those Thieves which were taken at St. Edmunds, whom the holy Martyr had upon their vain attempts tied with an invisible knot’ (he means St. Edmundsbury in Suffolk; Caxt. cap. 96▪ which Church these Fellows having a design to rob, are said by miracle to have stood still in the place, as if they had been tied with Cords: These Thieves Isay) ‘were by his means or sufferance given up to the severity of the Laws, and condemned to the Gallows or Gibbet.’ Let not any one think that in this middle Age, this Gallows or Gibb [...]t I spoke of, was any other thing than the Roman Furca, [Page 38] upon which people hang and are strangled till they die.

34. Egbert King of the West-Saxons (I make use of Camdens words) having gotten in four Kingdoms by conquest, and devour'd the other two also in hope, that what had come under the Government of one, might likewise go under one name; and that he might keep up the memory of his own people the Angles, he gave order by Proclamation, that the Heptarchy which the Saxons had possest, should be called En­gelond. John Carnotensis writes, that it was so called from the first co­ming in of the Angles; and another some body says it was so named from Hengist a Saxon Prince.

There are a great many Laws of King Ina, Alfred, Edward, Athelstan, Edmund, Edgar, Ethelred, and Knute the Dane, written in the Saxon language; which have lasted till these very times. ‘For King Knute gave order ('tis William of Malmsbury speaks) that all the Laws which had been made by former Kings, and especially by his Predecessor E­thelred, should under pain of his displeasure and a Fine, be constantly ob­served: For the keeping of which, even now in the time of those who are called the Good, people swear in the name of King Edward; not that he appointed them, but that he observed them.’ The Laws of Edward, who for his piety has the sirname of Confessor, are in Readers hands. These of the Confessor were in Latin; those others of Knute were not long since put into Latin by William Lambard a learned man, and one very well vers'd in Antiquity; who had recovered them both, and published the Saxon Original with his Translation over against it, Printed by John Day at London, Anno 1567. under the Title of Archaeono­mia, or a Book concerning the ancient Laws of the English. May he have a good harvest of it as he deserves.

From Historians let us borrow some other helps for this service.

King Alfred divides England into Countyes or Shires, and into Hundreds and Tythings. The Original of Decenna or Court­leet, Friburg, and Mainpast. Forms of Law, how Peo­ple were to answer for those whom they had in Borgh or Main­past.

35. INgulph the Abbot of Crowland, Rotulus Win­toniae. writing of King Alfred says: That he was the first of all that changed the Villages or Lordships and Pro­vinces of all England into Counties or Shires. Before that it was reckon­ed and divided according to the number of Hides or Plough-lands by lit­tle districts or quarters. He divided the Counties into Hundreds and Ty­things; (it was long before that Honorius, Hist. Cantu [...] ­ri [...]nsis. Arch-Bishop of Canterbury, had parted the Country into Parishes; to wit, Anno 636.) that every ‘Native home-born lawful man, might be in some Hundred and Tything (I mean whosoever was full twelve years of age) and if any one should be suspected of Larceny or Theft,Canu [...]. leg. 19. he might in his own Hundred or Ward, being either condemned or giving security (in some Manuscripts it is being acquitted) he might either incur or avoid the deserved pe­nalty. William of Malmsbury adds to this, that he that could not find security was afraid of the severity of the Laws; and if any guilty per­son, either before his giving security or after, should make his escape, all of that Hundred and Tything should incur the Kings fine.’

Here we have the Original of Decenna or a Court-leet, of Friburg, and perhaps of Mainpast: Which things though grown out of use in the pre­sent Age;Leg. Edw. Confess. cap. 20. yet are very often mentioned, not only in the Confessors Laws, but also in Bracton and in other Records of our Law.

What Decenna was,Bract. de co­ron [...], l. 3. c. 10. the word it self does almost shew: And Ingulph makes out, that is, a Dousin or Courtleet.

Friburg or Borgh signifies a Surety; for Fri is all one as free.

He who passes his word for anothers good behaviour, or good abear­ing, and is become his security; is said to have such a one in his Borgh: Being ingaged upon this account to the Government, to answer for him if he misbehave himself. And hence it is, that our people in the Coun­try call those that live near them, or as I may say at the next door, Neighbours: When yet those that would find out the reason why the people of Liege in the Low Countries are called Eburones, do understand that Burgh, which is the same as Borgh, to stand for a Neighbour; and this is plainly affirmed by Pontus Heuterus, Pont. Heut. de vet. Belg. l. 1. c. 13. in other Originations of the like kind.

Manupastus is the same thing as a Family: As if one would say, fed by hand. Jul. Pollux. l. 3. c. 8. Just in the like sence Julius Pollux, in Greek terms a Master of a Family, Trophimos; that is, the feeder of it.

That the Rights of Friburg and Manupast were in use with the English some five or six Generations ago,3. Edw. III. Itin. North. tit. Coron. 293. is manifest. Curio a Priest is fined by Edward the third, because there had been one of his Family a Murderer. And the ancient Sheets concerning the Progress or Survey of Kent under Edward the second,6 Edw. 2. Itin. Can [...]. do give some light this way. Ralph a Milner of Sandon, and Roger a Boy of the said Ralph in Borgh ofPerhaps it should be T [...] ­cham. Twicham; (Cri­tick [Page 40] whoever you are, I would not have you to laugh at this home spun Dialect) ‘came by night to the Mill of Harghes, and then and there mur­dered William the Milner; and carried away his Goods and Chattels and presently fled: It is not known whither they are gone, and the Ju­ry mistrusts them the said Ralph and Roger concerning the death of the aforesaid William; therefore let them be driven out and out-lawed. They had no Chattels, but the aforesaid Ralph was in Borgh of Simon Godwin of Tw [...]cham, who at present has him not; and therefore lies at mercy: And Roger was not in Borgh, but was of the Mainpast of Ro­bert Arch-Bishop of Canterbury deceased; there being no Engleshire pre­sented, the Verdit is, the murder upon the Hundred. The first disco­verer of it and three Neighbours are since dead; and Thomas Broks, one of the Neighbours, comes and is not mistrusted; and the Villages of Wimesbugewelle and Egestoun did not come fully to the Coroners Inquest and are therefore at mercy. And about the same time, Solomon Ro [...] of Ickham came to the House of Alice the Daughter of Dennis W [...]nes, and beat her and struck her upon the Belly with a staff; so that she dy­ed presently. And the foresaid Solomon presently fled, and the Jury mistrust him concerning the death aforesaid; therefore let him be dri­ven out and be outlawed. He had no Chattels, nor was he in Borgh because a Vagrant:’ The Verdit, the murder lies upon the Hundred. &c. And according to this form more such Instances.

But let it suffice to have hinted at these things, adding out of Henry Bracton; B [...]act. lib. 3. de Caroni c. 10. ‘If out of Frank-pledge an Offender be received in any Village, the Village shall be at mercy; unless he that fled be such an one, that he ought not to be in Leet and Frank-pledge; as Nobles, Knights, and their Parents (their eldest Sons it is in the yearly Records of Law in Ed­ward the first's time;A [...]. 21. Ed. 1. and we may take in Daughters too) a Clergy­man, a Freeman, (I fear this word has crept in) and the like, according to the custom of the Country; and in which case he, of whose Family and Mainpast they were, shall be bound in some parts, and shall an­swer for them; unless the custom of the Country be otherways, that he ought not to answer for his Mainpast, as it is in the County of Hertford, where a man does not answer for his Mainpast for any of­fence, unless he return after Felony, or he receive him after the offence committed, as in the Circuit of M. de Pateshull in the County of Hert­ford, in such a year of King Henry the fifth.’

In sooth these usages do partly remain in our Tythings and Hundreds, not at all hitherto repealed or worn out of fashion.

King Alfred first appointed Sheriffs. By Duns Scotus his advice, he gave Order for the breeding up of Youth in Learning. By the way, what a Hide of Land is. King Edgar's Law for Drink­ing. Prelates investiture by the Kings Ring and Staff. King Knute's Law against any English-man that should kill a Dane. Hence Englescyre. The manner of Subscribing and Sealing till Edward the Confessor's time. King Harald's Law that no Welch-man should come on this side Offa's Dike with a weapon.

36. ‘THe Governors of Provinces who before were styled Deputy-Lieutenants (we return to Ingulph and King Alfred) He di­vided into two Offices; that is, into Judges, whom we now call Ju­stices, and into Sheriffs, who do still retain the same name.’ Away then with Polydore Virgil, who fetches the first Sheriffs from the Norman Con­queror.

37. John Scot Erigena advised the King, that he would have his Subjects instructed in good Letters; and that to that end he would by his Edict take care of that which might be for the benefit of Learning. Where­upon ‘he gave strict order to all Freemen of the whole Kingdom,Alured. Rhi­vallens. ap. Tuin. Apol. ant. Oxon. l. 2. §. 207. who did at least possess two Hides of Land, that they should hold and keep their Children till the time of fifteen years of their Age, to learning; and should in the mean time diligently instruct them to know God.’

A Hide of Land, that I may note it once for all, and a Plough-Land (that is as much Land as can be well turned up and tilled with one Plough every year) are read as synonymous terms of the same sence, in Hunting­don, Matthew Paris, Thomas Walsingham; and expresly in a very old Charter of Dunstan. Although some take a Hide for an hundred Acres, and others otherwise; do thou, if thou hadst rather so do, fansie it to be as much ground as one can compass about with a Bull-hide cut into Thongs, as Queen Dido did at Carthage: There are some who are not un­willing to have it so understood.

38. King Edgar like a King of good Fellows, or Master of Revels, made a Law for Drinking. ‘He gave order that studs or knobs of Silver or Gold (so Malmsbury tells us) should be fastned to the sides of their Cups or drinking Vessels, that when every one knew his mark or boundary, he should out of modesty, not either himself covet or force another to desire more than his stint.’ This is the only Law before the first Parlia­ment under King James, has been made against those Swill-bowls, [...],Dionysius. Aeneus.

Swabbers of drunken Feasts and lusty Rowers,
In full brimm'd Rummers that do ply their Dars.

who by their carowses (tipling up Nestor's years, as if they were cele­brating the Goddess Anna Perenna) do at the same time drink others Healths, and mischief and spoil their own and the Publick.

[Page 42] 39. ‘There was no choice of Prelates (these are the words of Ingulph again) that was merely free and canonical; but the Court conferred all Dignities, as well of Bishops as of Abbots, by the Kings Ring and Staff, according to his good pleasure.’ The Election or choice was in the Clergy and the Monks; but they desired him whom they had chosen, of the King. Edmund, in King Ethelred's time, was after this manner made Bishop of the Holy Island on the Coast of Northumberland: And King Edgar in his Patent,Malmsb. lib. 3. de Pontif. & de gest. Reg. 2. which he signed to the Abby of Glastenbury, ‘retained to himself and his Heirs, the power of bestowing the Pastoral Staff to the Brother Elect.’

40. ‘To as many as King Knute retained with him in England (to wit, to the Danes; for by their hands also was the Scepter of this Kingdom ma­naged) ‘it was granted, that they should have a firm peace all over; so that if any of the English killed any of those men, whom the King had brought along with him; if he could not clear himself by the Judgment of God (that is,Bract. lib. 3. deCoron. cap. 15. by Ordeal) to wit, by water and burning hot iron, Justice should be done upon him: But if he run away and could not be taken, there should be paid for him sixty six marks; and they were ga­thered in the Village where the Party was slain, and therefore because they had not the murderer forth coming; and if in such Village by rea­son of their poverty, they could not be gathered, then they should be gathered in the Hundred, to be paid into the Kings Treasure.’ In this manner writes Henry Bracton, who observes that hence the business of Englishshire came into fashion in the Inquests of murder.

41. ‘Hand-Writings (i.e. Ingulphus. Patents and Grants) till Edward the Confessors time, were confirmed by the subscriptions of faithful Persons pres [...]nt;’a thing practised too among the Britans in King Arthur's time, as John Price informs us out of a very ancient Book of the Church of Landaff. ‘Those subscriptions were accompanied with Golden Crosses,Joh. Pris. de­tc [...]s. hist. Brit. and other sacred Seals or like stamps.’

42. ‘King Harald made a Law, that whosoever of the Welch should be found with a Weapon about him without the bound which he had set them, to wit, Offa's dike; he should have his Right Hand cut off by the Kings Officers.’ This dike our Chorographer tells us was cut by Offa King of the Mercians, Camdenus è Sarisburiensi. and drawn along from the mouth of the River Dee to the mouth of the River Wye for about eighty miles in length, on purpose to keep the English and Welch asunder.

The Royal Consorts great Priviledge of Granting. Felons Estates forfeited to the King. Estates granted by the King with three Exceptions of Expedition, Bridge, and Castle. The Ceremony of the Kings presenting a Turf at the Altar of that Church, to which he gave Land. Such a Grant of King Ethelbald com­prized in old Verse.

THe Donations or Grants of the Royal Consort, though not by the Kings Authority, contrary to what the Priviledge of any other Wife is,C. de donat. inter virum & uxorem. l. 26. were ratified also in that Age, as they were by the Roman Law: Which by the Patent of Aethelswith, Wife to Burghred King of the Mer­cians, granted to Cuthwuls in the year 868. hath been long since made out by Sir Edward Coke, Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas: Where also King Ethelred's ancient Charter proves,In Epist. ad l. 6. Relat. that the Estates of Felons (those I mean who concern themselves in Burglaries and Robberies) are forfeited to the King.

Having already mentioned those Hand-writings or Grants, which are from one hand and t'other, conveyances of Tenure (the fewel of quar­rels) I have a mind, over and above what has been said, to set down also these Remarks, as being to our purpose; and taken from the Saxons. As for instance, that those are most frequent whereby Estates are convey­ed to be held with the best and fairest right; yet most commonly these three things excepted, to wit, Expedition, Repairing of Bridges, and Building of Castles: And that those to whom the Grants were made, were very seldom acquitted upon this account. These three exceptions are noted by the term of a three-knotted necessity in an old Charter, where­in King Cedwalla granted to Wilfrid (the first Bishop of Shelsey in Sussex) the Village of Paganham in the said County.Anno Dom. 680. ‘For though in the Grants of King Ethelulph the Church be free (says Ingulph) and there be a con­cession of all things for the release of our Souls,Ingulph. and pardon of our sins to serve God alone without Expedition, and building of Bridge, and fortifying of Castle;’ to the intent that the Clergy might wholly attend Divine Service: Yet in that publick debate of Parliament, in the Reign of Henry the third, concerning the ancient State, Freedom, and Govern­ment of the English Church; and concerning the hourly exactions of the Pope and the Leeches, Jugglers and Decoys of Rome, that strolled up and down the Country to pick Peoples Pockets, to the great prejudice of the Common-wealth; they did indeed stand for the priviledge of the Church, and produced as Witnesses thereof the Instruments and Grants of Kings; who nevertheless were not so much inclined to countenance that liberty of the Church, but that,Matth. Pari [...] hist. major. pag. 838. as Matthew Paris observes, ‘They always re­served [Page 44] to themselves for the publick advantage of the Kingdom, three things; to wit, Expedition, and the repairing or making up of Bridge or Castle; that by them they might withstand the incursions of the Enemy.Ingulph. And King E [...]helbald hath this form: I grant that all the Monasteries and Churches of my Kingdom be discharged from pub­lick Customs or Taxes, Works or Services, and Burdens or Pay­ments or Attendances, unless it be the building and repairing of Ca­stles or Bridges, which cannot be released to any one.’

I take no notice how King Ethelred the twelfth perhaps (but by no means the fifteenth,Ralph Holins­hed in Hen. 7. wherein an Historian of ours has blundred) hath signed the third year of his Reign by the term of an Olympiad, after the manner of the Greek computation or reckoning: As likewise I pass other things of the like kind, which are many times used and practised according to the fancy of the Clerks or Notaries. How­ever the last words, which are the close of these Grants and Patents, are not to be slighted. These we may see in that of Cedwalla, Chart. Ar­chi [...]p. Cant. King of the South-Saxons, made to Theadore Arch-Bishop of Canterbury, in the year 687. thus.

‘For a further confirmation of my grant,See the Char­ter of Edw. Conf. in En­glish Rhyme, Camden in Essex. I Cedwalla have laid a Turf of the Land aforesaid upon the holy Altar of my Saviour: And with my own hand, being ignorant of Letters, have set down and expressed the mark or sign of the Holy Cross.’ Concerning Withred and a Turf of Land in Kent, Camden has the same thing;‘And King Ethelulph is said to have offered his Patent,Ingulph. or Deed of Gift, on the Altar of the holy Apostle St. Peter.

For a conclusion, I know no reason why I may not set underneath, the Verses of an old Poet, wherein he hath comprised the instrument or Grant of founding an Abby,Ingulph. which Ethelbald, King of the Mercians, gave to Kenulph Abbot of Crowland: Verses, I say, but such as were made without Apollo's consent or knowledge.

Istum Kenulphum si quis vexaverit Anglus,
Rex condemno mihi cuncta catella sua.
Inde meis Monachis de damnis omnibus ultrà
Vsque satisfaciat; carcere clausus erit.
Adsunt ante Deum testes hujus dationis
Anglorum proceres Pontificesque mei.
The Saint, to whom the Monastery was dedica­ted.
Guthlacus Confessor & Anachorita
Hic jacet, in cujus auribus ista loqu [...]r.
Oret pro nobis sanctissimus iste Sacerdos,
Ad tumbam cujus haec mea don [...] dedi.

Which in Rhyme dogrel will run much after this hobling rate.

[Page 45]
If any English vex this Kenulph, shall
I King condemn to me his Chattels all.
Thenceforth, until my Monks he satisfie,
For damages, in Prison he shall lye.
Witnesses of this Gift here in Gods fight
Are English Peers and Prelates of my Right▪
Saint Guthlac Confessor and Anchoret,
Lies here, in whose Ears these words I speak yet.
May he pray for us that most holy Priest,
At whose Tomb these my Gifts I have addrest.

Thus they closed their Donations or Grants; thus we our Remarks of the Saxons, being now to pass to the Normans.

From the NORMAN Conquest, to the Death of King Henry II.

William the Conquerour's Title. He bestows Lands upon his follow­ers, and brings Bishops and Abbots under Military Service. An account of the old English Laws, called Merchenlage, Dane­lage and Westsaxen-lage. He is prevailed upon by the Barons, to govern according to King Edward's Laws, and at S. Albans takes his Oath so to do. Yet some new Laws were added to those old ones.

WILLIAM Duke of Normandy upon pretence of a double Right, both that of Blood (inasmuch as Emme the Mother of Edward the Confessor, was Daugh­ter to Richard the first Duke of the Normans) and withal that of Adoption, having in Battel worsted Harald the Son of Godwin Earl of Kent, obtain'd a large Inheritance, and took possession of the Royal Govern­ment over all England.

‘After his Inauguration he liberally bestowed the Lands and Estates [Page 48] of the English upon his fellow-soldiers; that little which remained (so saith Matthew Paris) he put under the yoke of a perpetual servitude.’ Upon which account, some while since the coming in of the Normans, there was not in England except the King himself, any one, who held Land by right of Free-hold (as they term it:) since in sooth one may well call all others to a man only Lords in trust of what they had; as those who by swearing fealty, and doing homage, did perpetually own and ac­knowledge a Superior Lord, of whom they held, and by whom they were invested into their Estates.

‘All Bishopricks and Abbacies, which held Baronies, and so far forth had freedom from all Secular service (the fore-cited Matthew is my Author) he brought them under Military service, enrolling every Bishoprick and Abbacy according to his own pleasure, how many Soul­diers he would have each of them find him and his Successors in time of Hostility or War.’

Having thus according to this model ordered the Agrarian Law for the division and settlement of Lands, ‘he resolved to govern his Sub­jects (we have it from Gervase of Tilbury) by Laws and Ordinances in writing:Gerv. Tilb. d [...] sca [...]c. cap. 32. to which purpose he proposed also the English Laws ac­cording to their Tripartite or threefold distinction; that is to say, Mer­chenlage, Danlage and Westsaxenlage.

Merchenlage, that is, the Law of the Mercians; which was in force in the Counties of Glocester, Worcester, Hereford, Warwick, Oxford, Che­ster, Salop and Stafford.

Danlage, that is, the Law of the Danes; which bore sway in York­shire, Derby, Nottingham, Leicester, Lincoln, Northampton, Bedford, Buckingham, Hertford, Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridge, Huntingdon.

Westsaxenlage, that is, the Law of the West-Saxons; to which all the rest of the thirty two Counties (which are all that Malmesbury reckons up in Ethelred's time) did belong; to wit, Kent, Sussex, Surrey, Berks, Southampton, Winton, Somerset, Dorset and Devon.

‘Some of these English Laws he disliked and laid aside; others he ap­proved of, and added to them, some from beyond Sea out of Neustria (he means Normandy, which they did of old, term Neustria corruptly, in­stead of Westrich, as being the more Western Kingdom of the Franks, and given by Charles the Simple to Rollo for his Daughter Gilla her porti­on) ‘such of them as seemed most effectual for the preserving of the Kingdoms peace. This saith he of Tilbury.

Now this is no rare thing among Writers for them to devise, that Wil­liam the Conqueror brought in as it were a clear new face of Laws to all intents and purposes. 'Tis true, this must be acknowledg'd, that he did make some new ones (part whereof you may see in Lambard's Ar­chaeonomia, and part of them here subjoyned) but so however that they take their denomination from the English, rather than from the Nor­mans; although one may truly say, according to what Lawyers dispute, that the English Empire and Government was overthrown by him. That he did more especially affect the Laws of the Danes (which were not much unlike to those of the Norwegians, to whom William was by his Grand-father allied in blood) I read in the Annals of Roger Hoveden. And that he openly declared, that he would rule by them; ‘at hearing of which, all the great men of the Countrey, who had enacted the English Laws, were presently struck into dumps, and did unanimously [Page 49] petition him, That he would permit them to have their own Laws and ancient Customs; in which their Fathers had lived, and they them­selves had been born and bred up in; forasmuch as it would be very hard for them to take up Laws that they knew not, and to give judge­ment according to them. But the King appearing unwilling and un­easie to be moved, they at length prosecuted their purpose, beseeching him, that for the Soul of King Edward, who had after his death given up the Crown and Kingdom to him▪ and whose the Laws were, and not any others that were strangers, he would hearken to them and grant that they might continue under their own Countrey Laws. Where­upon calling a Council, he did at the last yield to the request of the Barons. From that day forward therefore the Laws of King Edward, which had before been made and appointed by his Grand-father Adgar, seeing their authority, were before the rest of the Laws of the Coun­trey respected, confirmed and observed all over England. But what then? Doth it follow that all things in William's time were new? How can a man chuse but believe it? The Abbot of Crowland sayes this of it, ‘I have brought with me from London into my Monastery the Laws of the most Righteous King Edward, which my Renowned Lord King William hath by Proclamation ordered, under most grievous penalties, to be authentick and perpetual, to be kept inviolably throughout the whole Kingdom of England, and hath recommended them to his Justices, in the same language wherein they were at first set forth and published.’ And in the Life of Fretherick Abbot of S. Albans you have this account: ‘After many debates, Arch-Bishop Lanfrank being then present (at Berkhamstead in Hartfordshire) the King did for the good of peace, take his Oath upon all the Reliques of the Church of S. Alban, and by touching the holy Gospels,Camden. Fretherick the Abbot ad­ministring the Oath, that he would inviolably observe the good and ap­proved ancient Laws of the Kingdom, which the holy and pious Kings of England his Predecessors, and especially King Edward had appointed.’

But you will much more wonder at that passage of William le Rouille of Alençon in his Preface to the Norman Customs. ‘That vulgar Chro­nicle,Guil. lè Rouille Alencon. saith he, which is intitled the Chronicle of Chronicles, bears wit­ness, that S. Edward King of England, was the Maker or Founder of this Custom; where he speaks of William the Bastard Duke of Nor­mandy, alias King of England, saying, that whereas the foresaid S. Ed­ward had no Heirs of his own Body, he made William Heir of the King­dom, who after the Defeat and Death of Harald the Usurper of the Kingdom, did freely obtain and enjoy the Kingdom upon this conditi­on, to wit, that he would keep the Laws which had before been made by the fore-mentioned Edward; which Edward truly had also given Laws to the Normans, as having been a long time also brought up himself in Normandy.

Where then, I pray you, is the making of new Laws? Why! with­out doubt, according to Tilbury, we are to think, that together with the ratifying of old Laws, there was mingled the making of some new ones: and in this case one may say truly with the Poet in his Panegyrick:

[Page 50]
Firmatur senium Juris,
Claudian. In 4. cons. Ho­norli.
priscamque resumunt
Canitiem leges, emendanturque vetustae,
Acceduntque novae.—

which in English speaks to this sense;

The Laws old age stands firm by Royal care,
Statutes resume their ancient gray hair.
Old ones are mended with a fresh repair;
And for supply some new ones added are.

See here! we impart unto thee, Reader, these new Laws, with other things, which thou maist justly look for at my hands in this place.

The whole Country inrolled in Dooms-day Book. Why that Book so called. Robert of Glocester's Verses to prove it. The O­riginal of Charters and Seals from the Normans, practised of old among the French. Who among the Romans had the priviledge of using Rings to seal with, and who not.

1. ‘HE caused all England to be described, and inrolled (a whole company of Monks are of equal authority in this business,’ Dooms­day. but we make use of Florentius of Worcester for our witness at this time) ‘how much Land every one of his Barons was possessed of, how many Soldiers in fee, how many Ploughs, how many Villains, how many living Creatures or Cattel, I, and how much ready mony every one was Master of throughout all his Kingdom, from the greatest to the least; and how much Revenue or Rent every Possession or Estate was able to yield.’

That breviary or Present State of the Kingdom being lodged in the Archives ‘for the generality of it, containing intirely all the Tenements or Tenures of the whole Country or Land was called Dooms-day, as if one would say, The day of Doom or Judgment. ‘For this reason, saith he of Tilbury, we call the same Dooms-day Book: Not that there is in it sentence given concerning any doubtful cases proposed; but because it is not lawful upon any account, to depart from the Doom or Judgment aforesaid.’

Reader, If it will not make thy nice Stomach wamble, let me bring in here an old fashioned Rhyme, which will hardly go down with our dainty finical Verse-wrights, of an historical Poet Robert of Glocester: One whom, for his Antiquity, I must not slight concerning this Book.

The K. W. vor to wite the worth of his londe
Let enqueri streitliche thoru al Engelonde,
Hou moni plou lond, and hou moni hiden also
Were in everich sire, and wat hii were wurth yereto:
And the rents of each toun, and of the waters echone,
That wurth, and of woods eke, that there ne bileved none,
But that he wist wat hii were wurth of al Engelonde,
And wite al clene that wurth thereof ich understond
And let it write clene inou, and that scrit dude iwis
In the Tresorie at Westminster there it yut is.
So that vre Kings suth, when hii ransome toke
And redy wat folc might give, hii fond there in yor boke.

Considering how the English Language is every day more and more refined, this is but a rude piece, and looks scurvily enough. But yet let us not be unmindful neither, that even the fine trim artifices of our quaint Masters of Expression, will themselves perhaps one day, in future Ages, that shall be more critical, run the same risk of censure, and un­dergo the like misfortune: And that,

[Page 52]
Multa renascentur quae nunc cecidere,
Horat. art. poetic.
Quae nunc sunt in honore;—

As Horace the Poet born at Venusium, tells us: That is,

Several words which now are fal'n full low,
Shall up again to place of Honour start;
And words that now in great esteem, I trow,
Are held, shall shortly with their honour part.

2. ‘The Normans called their Writings given under their hand, Char­ters (I speak this out of Ingulph) and they ordered the confirmation of such Charters with an impression of Wax, by every ones particular Seal, under the Testimony and Subscription of three or four Witnesses standing by.’

But Edward the Confessor had also his Seal, though that too from Nor­mandy. For in his time, as the same Writer saith, ‘Many of the En­glish began to let slip and lay aside the English Fashions, bringing in those of the Normans in their stead, and in many things to follow the customs of the Franks; all great persons to speak the French Tongue in their Courts, looking upon it as a great piece of gentility, to make their Charters and Writings alamode of France; and to be ashamed of their own Country usages in these and other like cases.’ Nay, and if Leland, Leland. an Eye-witness, may be believed, our great Prince Arthur had his Seal also, which he saith he saw in the Church of Westminster with this very inscription. ‘PATRITIUS. ARTHURIUS. BRITANNIAE. GALLIAE. GERMANIAE. DACIAE. IMPERATOR.’ That is, The Right Noble, ARTHUR, Emperor of Britanny, France, Germa­ny, and Transylvania.

But that the Saxons had this from the Normans, is a thing out of all question. Their Grants or Letters Patents signed with Crosses, and sub­scribed with Witnesses names, do give an undoubted credit and assurance to what I have said. John Ross informs us that Henry Beauclerk was the first that made use of one of Wax;Matth. Cantu. in Antiq. Ec­cles. Britan. and Matthew of Canterbury, that Ed­ward the first did first hang it at the bottom of his Royal Writings by way of Label; whereas before, his Predecessors fastned it to the left side. Such a writing of Henry the first in favour of Anselm, the last Author makes mention of; and such an one of William's Duke of the Normans, though a very short one and very small written;Tuin. apol. ant Oxon. lib. 1. §. 81. Brian-Twine in his Apology for the Antiquity of the famous University of Oxford (the great Study and support of England, and my ever highly honoured Mother) saith, he had seen in the Library of the Right Honourable my Lord Lumley.

But let a circumcised Jew, or who else will for me, believe that story concerning the first Seal of Wax, and the first fastning of it to the Wri­ting: A great many waxen ones of the French Peers (that I may say something of those in wax) and Golden ones of their Kings (to wit, be­twixt [Page 53] the years 600 and 700) we meet with fashioned like Scutcheons or Coats of Arms in those Patterns or Copies which Francis de Rosieres has in his first Tome of the Pedigree or Blazonry of the Dukes of Lorain, set down by way of Preface. Nor was it possible that the Normans should not have that in use, which had been so anciently practised by the French. Let me add this out of the ancient Register of Abendon: ‘That Richard Earl of Chester (who flourished in the time of Henry the first) ordered to sign a certain Writing with the Seal of his Mother Ermentrude; Camden i [...] Ord. Angl. seeing that (being not girt with a Soldiers Belt, i. e. not yet made Knight) all sorts of Letters directed by him, were inclosed with his Mothers Seal.’

How? what is that I hear? Had the Knightly dignity and Order the singular priviledge, as it was once at Rome, to wear Gold-Rings? For Rings (as 'tis related out of Ateius Capito) were especially designed and ingraven for Seals:Macrob. Sa­turn. lib. 7. cap. 13. Let Phoebus, who knows all things, out of his Ora­cle tell us. For Servants or Slaves (so says Justus Lipsius, and remarks it from those that had been dug up in Holland) and common Soldiers were allowed iron ones to sign or to seal with (which therefore Flavius Vopiscus calls annulos sigillaricios, i. e. Vopisc. in Aurel. seal-Rings) and so your ordinary Masters of Families had such, with a Key hanging at it to seal and lock up their pro­vision and utensils. ‘But,Lips. ad 2. Annal. Tacit. num. 4. saith Ateius of the ancient time, Neither was it lawful to have more than one Ring, nor for any one to have one neither but for Freemen, whom alone trust might become, which is preserved under Seal; and therefore the Servants of a Family had not the Right and Priviledge of Rings. I come home to our selves now.’

Other ways of granting and conveying Estates, by a Sword, &c. par­ticularly by a Horn. Godwin's trick to get Boseham of the Arch-Bishop of Canterbury. Pleadings in French. The French Language and Hand when came in fashion. Coverfeu. Laws against taking of Deer, against Murder, against Rape.

3. ‘AT first many Lands and Estates were collated or bestowed by bare word of mouth,Ingulph. without Writing or Charter, only with the Lords Sword or Helmet, or a Horn or a Cup; and very many Tenements with a Spur, with a Currycomb, with a Bow, and some with an Arrow: But these things were in the beginning of the Norman Reign, in after times this fashion was altered, says Ingulph.

I, and these things were before the Normans Government. Let King Edgar his Staff cut in the middle,Malmsb. lib. 2. cap. 8. and given to Glastenbury Abbey for a testimony of his Grant, be also here for a testimony. And our Antiqua­ry has it of Pusey in Berkshire, ‘That those who go by the name of Pu­sey do still hold by a Horn, which heretofore had been bestowed upon their Ancestors by Knute the Danish King.’ A. Ch. 780. In like manner, to the same purpose an old Book tells this story: ‘That one Vlphus the Son of Toraldus, turned aside into York, and filled the Horn that he was used to drink out of, with Wine; and before the Altar upon his bended knees, drinking it, gave away to God and to St. Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, all his Lands and Revenues.’ Which Horn of his, saith Camden, we have been told was kept or reserved down to our Fathers memory. We may see the conveyance of Estate, how easie it was in those days, and clear from the punctilio's of Law, and withal how free from the captious malice of those petty-foggers who would intangle Titles and find flaws in them, and from the swelling Bundles and Rolls of Parchments now in use.

But commend me to Godwin Earl of Kent, Guil. Mapaus. Can [...]len. who was, to use H [...]gesander's word, too great a [...], catcher at Syllables, and as the Come­dian says, more shifting than a Potters wheel: ‘Give me (saith he to the Arch-Bishop of Canterbury) Boseham. The Arch-Bishop admiring what it was he would be at in that question, saith, I give you Bose­ham. He straight upon the confidence of this deceit, without any more ado entred upon an Estate of the Arch Bishops of that name on the Sea-coasts of Sussex, [...] [...]eud. 2. [...]. 2. as if it had been his own by Inheritance: ‘And with the testimony of his people about him, spoke of the Arch-Bishop before the King as the donor of it, and quietly enjoyed it.’ Those things I spoke of before (to wit, of Sword, Horn, &c.) smell of that way of investing in­to Fees which we meet with in Obertus de Orto; but are very unlike to that solemn ceremony which is from ancient time even still used in con­veying of an Estate and delivering possession, wherein a green Turf or the bough of a growing Tree is required.

4. ‘They did so much abhor the English tongue ('tis the Abbot of Crowland saith it) that the Laws of the Land, and the Statutes of the En­glish Kings,Stat. 36. Ed. 3. cap. 15. were handled or pleaded in the French language. For till the thirty sixth year of Edward the third, all businesses of Law were [Page 55] pleaded in French. That also in Schools the Rudiments of Grammati­cal Institution, were delivered to Boys in French and not in English. Also that the English way and manner of Writing was laid aside, and the French mode was made use of in all Charters or Instruments and Books.’

Indeed it was such a fault to be ignorant in the French, or not to be able to speak it;Mi [...]h. P [...]ri. that mainly upon this account, in the Reign of William Ru­fus, Vlstan Bishop of Worcester was censured as unworthy of his place, and deprived of his dignity, who as to other things according to the simplicity of that Age, was Scholar enough. The Abbot whom I quo­ted, speaks thus of the French Character: ‘The Saxon hand was used by all the Saxons and Mercians in all their hand-writings, till the time of King Alfred, who had by French Tutors been very well trained up in all Literature; but from the time of the said King, it did by disuse come to be of little account; and the French hand, because it being more legible and more delightful to sight, had the preheminence, grew more and more every day in vogue and use among all the English. Ne­vertheless however this business went, we are told that in the memory of our Fathers, and that by an ancient order, there were Lectures of the English-Saxon language, read at Tavistock Abby in Devonshire.

5. That his new Kingdom might not be disturbed by Riots and dis­orders in the night, he ordered that at the Ringing of a Bell (which they called the Curfew-Bell) all the Lights and Fires should in every little Cottage,Polydorus. Coverfeu. a little after the dusk of the Evening, be put out.

6. He that should take a Deer, or aprum, a Boar (so says Huntingdon, but perhaps 'tis caprum, a Buck) or a Roe, was to have his eyes thrust or plucked out, saith Matthew Paris.

7. If any one had slain any one ('tis Huntingdon writes this) be it upon what cause or occasion soever, he was sentenced to a Capital pu­nishment, he was to die for it

‘8. If one had forced any woman (so I read aliquam any woman, not aliquem any man, as 'tis in the common Prints) he was to have his Pri­vities cut off.’ Forced her? I, sure enough; and perhaps he that lay with a woman with her consent, was notwithstanding that, served in the same kind too. And in this case I would have you hear what that great Lawyer Albericus Gentilis, Alberic. Gen­til. de jure bell. lib. 1. c. 20. his opinion is. ‘This I say, saith he, that a man hath a greater injury done him, if the woman were not ravished per force, but were debauched and made willing: because in this case her mind is estranged from her Husband; but in that other, not.’

Sheriffs and Ihries were before this time. Tha four Terms. Judges to Act without Appeal. Justices of Peace. The Kingr payments made at first in Provisions. Afterwards ehanged into Mony, which the Sheriff of each County was to pay in to the Exchequer. The Constable of Dover and Warder of the Cinque Ports why made. A disorder in Church-affairs Reformed.

POlydore Virgil brings in at this time the first Sheriffs of Counties, and here places the beginning of Juries, or determining of Tryals by the judgment of Twelve; but is out in them both. This of Juries is convin­ced by a Law of Ethelred in Lambard's explications of Law-terms, and by those irrefragable arguments which the famous Sir Edward Coke brings against it. That other mistake of Sheriffs is confuted by what we have formerly noted out of Ingulph, and by what we shall hereafter somewhere have occasion to remark.August. de Civ. Dei. l. 18. c. 10. Pausan. Atti­cis. Mars being impleaded in the Areopagus, the place of Judgment at Athens, for the murder of Halirothius the Son of Neptune, whom he had slain for Ravishing his Daughter Alcippa; upon his Tryal by twelve Gods, was acquitted by six Sentences or Votes: For if the number were equal and no majority, the Person was not condemn­ed but discharged. My meaning why I put in this Story, is to shew the most ancient use of this number of twelve in Tryals elsewhere, as well as amongst us. An Italian might well mistake in a concern of England; yet take it not ill at my hands, that I have given you this upon his credit.

9. He appointed that four times every year,Terms. there should be kept Conventions or Meetings for several days, in such place as he himself should give order: In which Meetings the Judges sitting apart by them­selves, should keep Court and do Justice. These are our four Tserms.

10. He appointed other Judges, who without appeal should exercise Jurisdiction and Judgment; from whom as from the bosom of the Prince, all that were ingaged in quarrels, addressing thither, might have right done them, and refer their controverlies to them.

‘11. He appointed other Rulers or Magistrates, who might take care to see misdemeanors punished;Justices of Peace. these he called Justices of Peace. Now one may well imagine, that this name of Office is most certainly of a later date, and a foreign Writer is to be excused by those rights which are afforded to Guests and Strangers (since acting a Busiris his part against them, would be downright barbarous) I say he is to be excu­sed so far, as not to have his mistakes in the History of the English Nation, too heavily charged upon him.

‘12. In the Primitive State of the Kingdom after the Conquest ’(Ger­vase of Tilbury in his Dialogue of the Exchequer, saith, this is a thing handled down from our Forefathers) ‘the Kings had payments made [Page 57] them out of their Lands, not in sums of Gold or Silver, but only in Vi­ctuals or Provisions: Out of which the Kings house was supplied with necessaries for daily use; and they who were deputed to this service (the Purveyors) knew what quantity arose from each several land. But yet as to Soldiers pay or donatives, and for other necessaries concerning the Pleas of the Kingdom, or Conventions, as also from Cities and Ca­stles where they did not exercise Husbandry or Tillage; in such instan­ces, payments were made in ready mony. Wherefore this Institution lasted all the time of William the First, to the time of King Henry his Son, so that I my self (Gervase flourished in the Reign of Henry the se­cond) have seen some people, who did at set times carry from the Kings Lands, victuals or provisions of food to Court. And the Officers also of the Kings house knew very well, having it upon account, which Counties were to send in Wheat, which to send in several sorts of flesh, and Provender for the Horses. These things being paid according to the appointed manner and proportion of every thing, the Kings Officers reckoned to the Sheriffs by reducing it into a sum of pence; to wit, for a measure of Wheat to make bread for a hundred men, one shilling; for the body of a pasture-fed Beef, one shilling; for a Ram or a Sheep four pence; for the allowance of twenty horses likewise four pence: But in process of time, when as the said King was busie in remote parts beyond Sea to appease Tumults and Insurrections; it so happened, that ready mony was highly necessary for him to supply his occasions. In the mean time, there came in multitudes, a great company of Husbandmen with complaints to the Kings Court, or which troubled him more, they frequently came in his way as he was passing by, holding up their Ploughshares, in token that their Husbandry was running to decay; for they were put to a world of trouble, upon occa­sion of the provisions which they carried from their own quarters through several parts of the Kingdom. Thereupon the King being moved with their complaints, did by the resolved advice of his Lords, appoint throughout the Kingdom such persons, as he knew were, for their prudence and discretion, fit for the service. These persons going about, and that they might believe their own eyes, taking a view of the several Lands, having made an estimate of the provisions which were paid out of them, they reduced it into a sum of pence. But for the total sum, which arose out of all the Lands in one County, they or­dered, that the Sheriff of that County should be bound to the Exche­quer:’ Adding this withal, that he should pay it at the Scale. Now the manner of paying, the tryal of the weight and of the metal by Chy­mical operation, the Melter or Coyner, and the surveyor of the Mint, are more largely handled and explained by my self in some other work of mine.

‘13. That he might the more firmly retain Kent to himself, that be­ing accounted as it were the Key of England; ('tis the famous Mr. Cam­den tells the Story) he set a Constable over Dover-Castle, and made the same person Warden of the Cinque Ports, according to the old usage of the Romans. Those are Hastings, Dover, Hith, Rumney, and Sandwich; to which are joyned Winchelsey and Rye as Principals, and other little Towns as Members.’

14. To put the last hand to William, I add out of the Archives, this Law, not to be accounted among the last or least of his.

[Page 58] William, by the Grace of God,A. M. 66. In Bot. chart. 2 Rich. 2. pro decan. & ca­pit. Ec [...]s. Lincoln. King of the English, to all Counts or Earls, Viscounts or Sheriffs, and to all French born, and English men, who have Lands in the Bishoprick of Remigius, greeting.

This Remigius was the first who translated the Episcopal See from Dorchester to Lincoln.

‘Be it known unto you all, and the rest of my Liege Subjects, who abide in England; that I, by the common advice of my Arch-Bishops, and the rest of the Bishops and Abbots, and all the Princes of my King­dom, have thought fit to order the amendment of the Episcopal Laws, which have been down to my time, in the Kingdom of the Angles, not well, nor according to the Precepts of the holy Canons, ordained or administred: Wherefore I do command, and by my Royal Autho­rity strictly charge; that no Bishop or Arch-deacon, do henceforth hold Pleas in the Hundred concerning Episcopal Laws; nor bring any cause which belongs to the Government of Souls (i. e. to spiritual affairs) to the judgment of secular men; but that whosoever, according to the Episcopal Laws, shall for what cause or fault soever be summoned, shall come to a place which the Bishop shall chuse and name for this purpose; and there make answer concerning his cause, and do right to God and his Bishop, not according to the Hundred, but according to the Canons and Episcopal Laws.’ For in the time of the Saxon Empire, there were wont to be present at those Country Meetings (the Hundred Courts) an Alderman and a Bishop, Leg. Edgar. cap. 5. the one for Spirituals, the other for Temporals, as appears by King Edgar's Laws.

William Rufus succeeds. Annats now paid to the King. Why claimed by the Pope. No one to go out of the Land without leave. Hunting of Deer made Felony.

AFter the death of William, his second Son WILLIAM sir­named RVFVS succeeded in his room. All Justice of Laws (as Florentius of Worcester tells us) ‘was now husht in silence, and Causes being put under a Vacation without hearing, money alone bore sway among the great ones,’ ‘Ipsaque majestas auro corrupta jacebat.Petron. Arbl [...]. that is,

And Majesty it self being brib'd with gold,
Lay, as a prostitute, expos'd to th' hold.

15. The right or duty of First-Fruits, or, as they are commonly called, the Annats, which our Kings claimed from vacant Abbies and Bishopricks, Polydor Virgil will have to have had its first original from Rufus. Now the Popes of Rome laid claim to them anciently; a sort of Tribute, which upon what right it was grounded,Basil. concil sess. 21. Duaren. de Benes. l. 6. c. 3. Vid. Platin. in Joh. 22. vit [...]. the Council of Basil will in­form us, and by what opinion and resolution of Divines and Lawyers confirmed, Francis Duarenus in his Sacred Offices of the Church will instruct us. 'Tis certain, that Chronologers make mention, that at his death the Bishopricks of Canterbury, Winchester and Salisbury, and twelve Monasteries beside, being without Prelates and Abbots, paid in their Revenues to the Exchequer.

16. ‘He forbad by publick Edict or Proclamation (sayes the same Author) that any one should go out of England without his leave and Passport.’ We read, that he forbad Anselm the Arch-Bishop, that he should not go to wait upon Pope Vrban; but that he comprehended all Subjects whatsoever in this his Royal order, I confess I have not met with any where in my reading, but in Polydor.

17. ‘He did so severely forbid hunting of Deer (saith William of Malmesbury) that it was Felony, and a hanging matter to have taken a Stag or Buck.’

Henry the First why called Beauclerk. His Letters of Repeal. An Order for the Relief of Lands. What a Hereot was. Of the Marriage of the Kings Homagers Daughter, &c. Of an Orphans Marriage. Of the Widows Dowry. Of other Homagers the like. Coynage-money remitted. Of the disposal of Estates. The Goods of those that dye Intestate, now and long since, in the Churches Jurisdiction; as also the business of Wills. Of Forfeitures. Of Misdemeanors. Of Forests. Of the Fee de Hanberk. King Edward's Law restored.

WIlliam, who had by direful Fates been shewn to the World, was followed by his Brother Henry, who for his singular Learning, which was to him instead of a Royal Name, was called Beau-clerk. He took care of the Common-wealth, by amending and making good what had slipt far aside from the bounds of Justice, and by softning with wholsome remedies those new unheard of, and most grievous injuries, which Ralph afterwards Bishop of Durham (being Lord Chief Justice of the whole Kingdom) plagued the people with. He sends Letters of Repeal to the High Sheriffs, to the intent, that the Citizens and people might enjoy their liberty and free rights again. See here a Copy of them, as they are set down in Matthew Paris.

HENRY by the Grace of God King of England, to Hugh of Bock­land, High Sheriff, and to all his Liege people, as well French as English in Herefordshire, Greeting. Know ye, that I through the mercy of God, and by the common advice of the Barons of the Kingdom of England have been crowned King. And because the Kingdom was opprest with unjust exactions, I out of regard to God, and that love which I bear towards you all, do make the holy Church of God free, so that I will neither sell it, nor will I put it to farm, nor upon the death of Arch-Bishop, or Bishop, or Abbot, will I take any thing of the domain of the Church, or of the men thereof, till a Successor enter upon it. And all evil Customs, wherewith the Kingdom of England was unjustly oppressed, I do henceforward take away; which evil usages I do here in part set down.

18. ‘If any one of my Barons, Counts or others that hold of me, shall dye, his Heir shall not redeem his Land, as he was wont to do in the time of my Father, but relieve it with a lawful and due relief. In like manner also shall the Homagers or Tenants of my Barons relieve their Lands from their Lords with a lawful and just relief.Canut. leg. cap. 69. & Ed. Confess. Bracton. lib. 2. cap. 35. [...] in Novell. Lev. 13. Ho­toman. in ver­bo Fe [...]dal. Releu. It appears, that in the times of the Saxons a Hereot was paid to the Lord at a Tenants death, upon the account of provision for War (for here in Saxon sig­nifies an Army:) and that which in our memory now in French is called a Relief (Henry of Bracton sayes, 'tis an engagement to re­cognize the Lord) doth bear a resemblance of the ancient Hereot. Thereupon it is a guess, saith William Lambard, that the Normans being [Page 61] Conquerors, did remit the Hereot to the Angles whom they had con­quered and stripped of all kind of Armour, and that for it they ex­acted money of the poor wretches.’ To this agrees that which is men­tioned in the State of England concerning the Nobles of Berkshire. ‘A Tain or Knight of the Kings holding of him, did at his death for a Relief part with all his Arms to the King, and one Horse with a Saddle and another without a Saddle. And if he had Hounds or Hawks, they were presented to the King, that if he pleased he might take them. And in an ancient Sanction of Conrade the First,Carol. Sigon. de reg. Ital. lib. 8. V. Hocom. comm. ad 3. lib. Feud. Mariana hist. Hispan. lib. 5. cap. 11. Emperour of Germany, If a Souldier that is Tenant or Lessee happen to dye, let his Heir have the Fee, so that he observe the use of the greater Vavasors, in giving his Horses and Arms to the Seniors or Lords.’ John Mariana takes notice, that the word Seniors in the Vular Languages, Spanish, Italian and French, signifies Lords, and that to have been in use from the time of Charlemain's Reign. But these things you may have in more plenty from the Feudists, those who write concerning Tenures.

19. If any of my Barons or other men (Homagers or Tenants) of mine (I return to King Henry's Charter) shall have a mind to give his Daughter, or Sister, or Niece, or Kinswoman in marriage, let him speak with me about it. But neither will I take any thing of his for this leave and licence, nor will I hinder him from betrothing her, ex­cept he shall have a design of giving her to an enemy of mine.

20. If upon the death of a Baron, or any other Homager of mine, there be left a Daughter that is an Heiress, I will bestow her with the advice of my Barons together with her Land.

21. If upon the death of the Husband, his Wife be left without Chil­dren, she shall have her Dowry and right of Marriage, as long as she shall keep her body according to Law; and I will not bestow her, but according to her own liking. And if there be Children, either the Wife, or some one else near of kin shall be their Guardian and Trustee of their Land, who ought to be just.

22. I give order, that my Homagers do in like manner regulate themselves towards the Sons and Daughters and Wives of their Homagers.

23. The common Duty of Money or Coinage, which was taken through all Cities and Counties, which was not in the time of King Edward, I do utterly forbid that henceforward this be no more done.

‘24. If any one of my Barons or Homagers shall be sick and weak, according as he himself shall give or order any one to give his money, I grant it so to be given; but if he himself being prevented either by Arms or by Sickness, hath neither given his money, nor disposed of it to give, then let his Wife, or Children, or Parents, and his lawful Homagers for his souls health divide it, as to them shall seem best.’ And in Canutus his Laws,Canut. cap. 68 ‘Let the Lord or Owner at his own discretion make a just distribution of what he hath to his Wife and Children and the next of kin.’ But at this time, and long since, Church-men have been as it were the Distributors and Awarders of the Goods of such per­sons [Page 62] as dye Intestate, or without making their Wills, and every Bishop as Ordinary in his own Diocess, is the chief Judge in these cases.

John Stratford Arch-Bishop of Canterbury saith it, [...] Rich. 3. tit. Testament. 4. and it is averred in the Records of our Law, that this Jurisdiction also concerning Wills, was of old long time ago in an ancient Constitution, intrusted to the Church by the consent of the King and Peers. However, in what Kings time this was done, neither does he relate, nor do I any where find,Lind provin. [...]nstit. de te­sta [...]. c. Sta [...]u­tum & de [...]u­mum. Eccles. c. Accidit. verb. Abolim. Glanvil. l. 7. c. 8. C. de testam. L Consulta di­valia. as William Lindwood in his Provincial acknowledgeth. It is a thing very well known, that after Tryal of right, Wills were wont to be opened in the Ecclesiastical Court even in the Reign of Henry the Second (Ralph Glanvill is my witness) contrary to what order was taken in the Imperial Decrees of the Romans. And peradventure it will appear so to have been before Glanvill, as he will tell you, if you go to him; although you have, quoted by my self some where, a Royal Rescript or Order to a High Sheriff, ‘That he do justly and without delay cause to stand (i. e. appoint and confirm) a reasonable share to such an one;’ that is, that the Legatee may obtain and enjoy his right, what was be­quested to him by the Sheriffs help. I come back now to my track again.

25. If any one of my Barons or Homagers shall make a forfeit, he shall not give a pawn in the scarcity of his money, as he did in the time of my Brother or my Father, but according to the quality of his forfei­ture: nor shall he make amends, as he would have done heretofore in my Brothers or Fathers time.

26. If he shall be convicted of perfidiousness or of foul misdemea­nors, as his fault shall be, so let him make amends.

27. The Forests by the common advice of my Barons, I have kept in mine own hand, in the same manner as my Father had them.

28. To those Souldiers or Knights who hold and maintain their Lands by Coats of Male (that is,Hotom. Feud. Haubertic. in Diction. per fee de Hauberke, that they may be ready to attend their Lords with Habergeons or Coats of Male com­pleatly armed Cap a pee) I grant the Plough-lands of their Domainsac­quitted from all Gelds, and from every proper Gift of mine, that, as they are eased from so great a Charge and Grievance, so they may furnish themselves well with Horse and Arms, that they may be fit and ready for my service, and for the defence of my Realm.

29. I restore unto you the Law of King Edward, with other amend­ments, wherewith my Father amended it.

Those amendments are put forth by Lambard. Hitherto out of those Royal and general Letters, directed to all the Subjects.

His order for restraint of his Courtiers. What the punishment of Theft. Coyners to lose their Hands and Privy-members. Guelding a kind of death. What Half-pence and Farthings to pass. The right measure of the Eln. The Kings price set for provisions.

30. ‘HE did by his Edict or Proclamation, restrain the Rapines, Thefts, and Rogueries of the Courtiers; ordering, that those who were caught in such pranks, should have their Eyes with their Stones pulled out.’ This Malmesbury supplies us with. But Florentius of Worcester and Roger Hoveden give the account, that he pu­nished Thieves with Death and Hanging, otherwise than that pleasant and curious man Thomas Moor in his Vtopia would have his people to be dealt with.Morus in Uto­pi [...], l. 2. Yet I am inclined rather to believe Malmesbury; not only upon the authority of the man, in comparison of whose Rose-beds (if you well weigh the Learning of that Age) the other pack of Writers are but sorry low shrubs; but also upon the account of a nameless Monk,De mirac. Thom. ap. Fox hist. ec­cles. lib. 4. who in his Book of the Miracles of S. Thomas of Canterbury, tells us a story of one Eilward, a poor mean fellow of Kingsweston in Berk­shire, who being in the Reign of King Henry the Second condemned of Theft (he had it seems stoln a pair of Countrey Gloves and a Whet­stone) was punished by losing his Eyes and Privities; who coming with devotion to S. Thomas his Tomb, got an intire restitution of his disap­pearing Members and Faculties, and was as good a man as ever he was. Perchance in this he is no witness of infallible credit. Let the story of Iphis and Ianthis, and that of Ceneus try Masteries with this for the Wher­stone; to our purpose the Writer is trusty enough. But in the first times of the Normans, I perceive, that the Halter was the ill consequence of Theft. ‘Let it be lawful for the Abbot of that Church, if he chance to come in in the God speed, to acquit an High-way-man or Thief from the Gallows.’ They are the words of the Patent with which William the Conquerour, to expiate the slaughter of Harald, consecra­ted a Monastery to S. Martin near Hastings on the Sea-coast of Sussex, and priviledged it with choice and singular rights.

31. ‘Against Cheats, whom they commonly call Coyners ('tis Malmesbury speaks again) he shewed his particular diligence, permit­ting no cheating fellow to escape scot-free, without losing his Fist or Hand, who had been understood to have put tricks upon silly people with the traffick of their falshood.’ For all that, he who hath tackt a sup­plement to Florentius of Worcester, Guli. Geme­tic. de ducib. Norm. lib. 7. cap. 23. and William Gemeticensis give out, that the Counterfeiters and Imbasers of Coin had, over and above those parts cut off, which Galen accounts to be the principal instruments for propagating of the kind. To whom Hoveden agrees, who writes in the Life of Henry the First, ‘That Coyners by the Kings order being taken, had their right Hands and their Privy-members cut off.’ Upon this account sure, that he that was guilty of such a wicked crime, should have no hope left him of posterity, nor the Common-wealth be in any [Page 64] further fear of those who draw villainous principles from the loins of those that beget them.

Now at this very time and in former Ages too, this piece of Treason was punished with Halter and Gallows; and that also of Theft not only in England, Fest. Latro. Heb. [...] la­tro à [...] la­tus. Bodin. de rep. l. 6. c. 6. Dist. 55. c. 4. ff. Ad leg. Corn. de Sicar. l. 4. § ult. Bract. lib. 3. tract. 2. c. 23. & Stamf. plac. Coron. l. 1. c. 38. but almost in all Countreys, especially Robbery upon the High-way, which is committed by those who lay wait to surprize Pas­sengers as they travel along upon one or other side of them; whence not only in the Latin, but in the holy Language also, a High-way-man hath his name. And truly among the Ancients guelding was lookt upon as a kind of death. The Apostles Canons give him the character and censure of a Manslayer, who cuts off his own Privities (who lives all his life a Batchelor, say the Talmudists) and he who cuts off another mans, is in danger of the Cornelian Law concerning Murderers and Cut­throats; and so was it heretofore among the English.

32. He ordered (they are Hoveden's words) that no half-penny, which also he commanded should be made round, or farthing also, if it were intire, should be refused.

33. He corrected the Merchants false Eln (so sayes the Monk of Malmesbury) applying the measure of his Arm, and proposing that to all people over England.

34. He gave order to the Courtiers, in whatsoever Cities or Vil­lages he were, how much they were to take of the Countrey people gratis, and at what price to buy things; punishing offendors herein ei­ther with a great Fine of money, or with loss of life.

The Regality claimed by the Pope, but within a while resumed by the King. The Coverfeu dispensed with. A Subsidy for marrying the Kings Daughter. The Courtesie of England. Concerning Shipwrack. A Tax levied to raise and carry on a War.

35. ANselm Arch-Bishop of Canterbury labours earnestly with the Pope and his party, and at length obtains it with much ado, that from that time forward (you have it in Florilegus after other Writers) never any one should be invested with a Pastoral Staff or a Ring into a Bishoprick or Abbacy by the King, or any Lay-person whatsoever in England, (added out of Malmesbury) retaining however the priviledge of Election and Regality.’ There was a sharp bickering about this business betwixt the King and Anselm; and so between the Popes Pas­chalis and Calixtus and Henry about that time Emperour. Both of them at least pretendedly quit their right; our King humouring the Scene according to the present occasion. ‘For after Anselm's death, he did invest Rodulphus that came in his room by a Ring and a Pastoral Staff.’

36. He restored the Night-Torches or Lights which William the First had forbidden;Stow, & v. Malmesb. l. 5. de gest. reg. fol. 88. forasmuch as he now had less reason to appre­hend any danger from them, the Kingdom being in a better and fir­mer posture.

37. To make up a portion for Mawd the Kings Daughter, married to Henry the Emperour, every Hide of Land paid a Tribute of Three Shillings. Here Polydore makes his descant. ‘Afterward, sayes he, The rest of the Kings followed that course of raising Portions for the bestowal of their Daughters; so tenacious hath posterity alway been of their own advantages.’ It is scarce to be doubted, that the right of raising money for the marrying of the Lords Daughters by way of Aid or Subsidy upon the Tenants or Dependants, is of a more ancient ori­ginal. Neither would I fetch it from the mutual engagement of Romu­lus his Patrons and Clients, or Landlords and Tenants, or from Suetonius his Caligula: rather from the old Customs of the Normans, more ancient than King Henry; where that threefold Tribute is explained by the name of Aid, which the Patent granted by King John in favour of pub­lick liberty mentions in these words: ‘I will impose no Escuage or Aid in our Realm, but by the common advice of our Realm; unless it be to ransom our Body, and to make our first-born Son a Soldier or Knight, and to marry our eldest Daughter once.’

38. Some ascribe that Law to Henry, Spec. Just. cap. des arti­cles, &c. which Lawyers call the Courtesie of England; whereby a man having had a Child by his Wife, when she dyes, enjoyes her Estate for his life.

[Page 66] 39. He made a Law, that poor shipwrackt persons should have their Goods restored to them, if there were any living creature on Ship-board, that escaped drowning.Lamb. Itine­rat. Cant. West. 1. c. 4. Forasmuch as before that time, whatsoever through the misfortune of shipwrack was cast on Shoar, was adjudged to the Exchequer; except that the persons who suffered shipwrack and had escaped alive, did themselves within such a time refit and repair the Vessel. So the Chronicle of the Monastery of S. Martin de Bello. This right is called Wreck, or if you will, Uareck, of the Sea. How agree­able to the Law of Nations, I trouble not my self to enquire. That more ancient Custom, is as it were suitable to the Norman usage. Now at this time our Lawyers (and that the more modern Law of Edward the First) pass judgement according to the more correct Copy of King Henry. And they reckon it too among the most ancient Customs of the Kingdom.Pat. 46 lid. 3. Did therefore King Richard order, or did Hoveden relate this to no purpose, or without any need? ‘If one who suffers shipwrack dye in the Ship, let his Sons or Daughters, his Brethren or Sisters have what he left, according as they can shew and make out that they are his next heirs. Or if the deceased have neither Sons nor Daughters, nor Brothers nor Sisters, the King is to have his Chattels.’ Can one imagine, that this Law he made at Messina, when he was engaged in War, was calculated only for that time or place? Certainly in the Archives there is elsewhere to be met with as much as this.

40. That he might with a stout Army bear the brunt of Baldwin Earl of Flanders and Louis King of France, who had conspired, being bound by mutual Oaths to one another with the Duke of Anjou, to take away from King Henry by force of Arms the Dutchy of Normandy, ‘he first of all (tis Polydore avers it) laid a heavy Tax upon the people, to carry on the new War; which thing with the Kings that followed after, grew to be a custom.’

He was the last of the Normans of a Male descent, and as to the me­thod of our undertaking, here we treat of him last.

In King Stephen's Reign all was to pieces. Abundance of Castles buili. Of the priviledge of Coming. Appeals to the Court of Rome now set on foot. The Roman Laws brought in, but disowned. An instance in the Wonder-working Parliament.

AS of old, unless the Shields were laid up, there was no Dancing at Weddings; so except Arms be put aside, there is no pleading of Laws. That Antipathy betwixt Arms and Laws, England was all over sensible of, if ever at any time, in the Reign of K. STEPHEN, Count of Blois, King Henry's Nephew by his Sister Adela. For he did not only break the Law and his Oath too to get a Kingdom, but also being sa­luted King, by those who perfidiously opposed Mawd the right and true heir of King Henry, he reigned with an improved wickedness. ‘For he did so strangely and odly chop and change every thing (it is Malms­bury speaks it) as if he had sworn only for this intent, that he might shew himself to the whole Kingdom, a Dodger and Shammer of his Oath.’ But, as he saith, ‘—perjuros merito perjuria fallunt?Ovid. Art. Am. lib. 1. that is,

Such men as Perjuries do make their Trade,
By their own Perjuries most justly are betray'd.

They are things of custom to which he swore, and such as whereby for­mer priviledges are ratified, rather than new ones granted. However, some things there are, that may be worth the transcribing.

41. ‘Castles were frequently raised ('tis Nubrigensis relates it) in the several Counties by the bandying of parties; and there were in En­gland in a manner as many Kings, or rather as many Tyrants, as Lords of Castles, having severally the stamping of their own Coin, and a power of giving Law to the Subjects after a Royal manner.’ then was the Kingdom plainly torn to pieces, and the right of Majesty shattered, which gains to it self not the least lustre from stamping of Money. Though I know very well,V. Leg. Athel­stan. 14. that before the Normans, in the City of Ro­chester, Canterbury, and in other Corporations and Towns, Abbots and Bishops had by right of priviledge their Stampers and Coiners of Money.

42. Next to the King, Theobald Arch-Bishop of Canterbury presided over the Council of London (where there were also present the Peers of the Realm) ‘which buzzed with new appeals. For in England (tis Henry of Huntington sayes it) appeals were not in use, till Henry Bishop of Winchester, Bellarm. l. 2. de Rom. Pon­tif. c. 21. when he was Legate, cruelly intruded them to his own mischief.’ Wherefore what Cardinal Bellarmin has writ, be­ginning [Page 68] at the Synod of Sardis, concerning the no body knows how old time of the universal right of appealing to the Pope of Rome, does not at all, as to matter of fact, seem to touch upon this Kingdom of ours by many and many a fair mile.

43. ‘In the time of King Stephen (fo 'tis in the Polycraticon of John of Salisbury) the Roman Laws were banisht the Realm,Polycrat. l. 8. c. 22. which the House of the Right Reverend Theobald Lord Primate of Britanny had fetcht or sent for over into Britanny. Besides, it was forbidden by Royal Pro­clamation, that no one should retain or keep by him the Books.’ If you understand the Laws of the Empire (I rather take them to be the Decrees of the Popes) it will not be much amiss, out of the Parlia­ment Records to adjoyn these things of later date. In the Parliament holden by Richard of Bourdeaux, which is said to have wrought Wonders, Upon the Impeachment of Alexander Nevil Arch-Bishop of Canterbury, Robert Uere Duke of Ireland, Michael Pole Earl of Suffolk, Thomas Duke of Glocester, Richard Earl of Arundel, Thomas Beauchamp Earl of Warwick, and others, That they being intrusted with the management of the Kingdom, by soothing up the easie and youthful temper of the King, did assist one another for their own private interest, more than the publick, well near to the ruine and overthrow of the Government it self; the Common Lawyers and Civilians are consulted with, about the form of drawing up the Charge; which they answer all as one man, was not agreeable to the rule of the Laws. But the Barons of Par­liament reply, That they would be tyed up to no rules, nor be led by the punctilioes of the Roman Law, but would by their own authority pass judgement;Rot. Parl. 11 Rich. 2. pur ce que la royalme d' Angleterre n' estoit devant ces heures, n'y à l' entent de nostre dit Seigneur le Roy & Seigneurs de Parlament unque ne serra rules ne gouvernes per la Loy Civil: that is, inasmuch as the Realm of England was not before this time, nor in the intention of our said Lord the King and the Lords of Parliament ever shall be ruled or governed by the Civil Law. And hereupon the persons impleaded are sentenced to be banished.

But here is an end of Stephen: He fairly dyed.

In King Henry the Seconds time, the Castles demolished. A Par­liament held at Clarendon. Of the Advowson and Presentation of Churches. Estates not to be given to Monasteries without the Kings leave. Clergymen to answer in the Kings Court. A Cler­gyman convict, out of the Churches Protection. None to go out of the Realm, without the Kings leave. This Repealed by King John. Excommunicate Persons to find Surety. Laymen how to be impleaded in the Ecclesiastical Court. A Lay-Jury to swear there, in what case. No Homager or Officer of the Kings to be Excommunicated, till He or his Justice be acquainted.

AT length, though late first, Henry the Son of Jeoffry Plantagenet, Count of Angers by the Empress Mawd, came to his Grandfatherrs Inheritance. Having demolished and levelled to the ground, the Ca­stles which had, in King Stephen's time, been built, to the number of eleven hundred and fifteen; and having retrieved the right of Majesty in­to its due bounds, he confirmed the Laws of his Grandfather. ‘More­over, at Clarendon in Wiltshire, near Salisbury, John of Oxford being President, by the Kings own Mandate, there being also present the Arch-Bishops, Bishops, Abbots, Priors, Earls, Barons, and Peers of the Realm, other Laws are recognized and passed;’ whilst at first those who were for the King on one side, those who were for the Pope on the other, with might and main stickle to have it go their way; these latter pleading, that the secular Court of Justice did not at all suit with them, upon pretence that they had a priviledge of Immunity. But this would not serve their turn; for such kind of Constitutions as we are now setting down, had the Vogue.

44. ‘If any Controversie concerning the Advowson and Presenta­tion of Churches, arise betwixt Laymen, or betwixt Laymen and Cler­gymen, or betwixt Clergymen among themselves; let it be handled and determined in the Court of the Lord our King.’

45. ‘The Churches which are in the Kings Fee, cannot be given to perpetuity without his assent and concession.’ Camden. Even in the Saxons times it seems it was not lawful, without the Kings favour first obtained, to give away Estates to Monasteries; for so the old Book of Abington says. ‘A Servant of King Ethelred's called Vlfric Spot, built the Abby of Bur­ton in Staffordshire, A. 1004. and gave to it all his Paternal Estate, appraised at seven hundred pounds; and that this donation might be good in Law, he gave King Ethelred three hundred Marks of Gold for his confirmati­on of it, and to every Bishop five Marks, and over and above to Alfric Arch-Bishop of Canterbury, the Village of Dumbleton.

46. Clergymen being arighted and accused of any matter whatso­ever, having been summoned by the Kings Justice, let them come into his Court, there to make answer to that, of which it shall be thought [Page 70] fit that there answer ought to be made: So that the Kings Justice send into the Court of Holy Church, to see after what manner the business there shall be handled.

47. If a Clergyman shall be convicted, or shall confess the Fact; the Church ought not from thenceforth to give him protection.

48. ‘It is not lawful for Arch-Bishops, Bishops, and Persons of the Kingdom, to go out of the Realm without leave of our Lord the King: And if they do go out, if the King please, they shall give him security, that neither in going, nor in returning, or in making stay, they seek or devise any mischief or damage against our Lord the King.’ Whether you refer that Writ, we meet with in the Register or Record, NE EXEAS REGNVM, for Subjects not to depart the Kingdom to this time or instance, or with Polydore Virgil to William Rufus, or to la­ter times, is no very great matter: Nor will it be worth our while, cu­riously to handle that question: For who, in things of such uncertainty, is able to fetch out the truth? Nor will I abuse my leasure, or spend time about things unapproachable. ‘An sit & hic dubito,Metamor. l. 10. sed & hic tamen auguror esse.’ Says the Poet in another case: And so say I.

Whether it be here or no,
Is a Question, I confess:
And yet for all that, I trow,
Here it is too, as I guess.

Out of King John's great Charter, as they call it, you may also com­pare or make up this Repeal of that Law in part. ‘Let it be lawful hence­forward for any one to go out of our Realm, and to return safely and securely by Land and by Water, upon our Royal word; unless in time of War, for some short time, for the common advantage of the King­dom; excepting those that are imprisoned and out-lawed according to the Law of the Kingdom, and any People or Nation, that are in actual War against us: And Merchants, concerning whom let such Order be taken, as is afore directed.’ I return to King Henry.

49. Excommunicate Persons ought not to give suretiship for the Re­mainder, nor to take an Oath; but only to find Surety and Pledge, to stand to the Judgment of the Church, that they may be ab­solved.

50. Persons of the Laity ought not to be accused or impleaded but by certain and legal Accusers and Witnesses, in the presence of the Arch-Bishop or Bishop: so that the Arch-Deacon may not lose his right, nor any thing which he ought to have therefrom.

[Page 71] 51. If they be such Persons who are in fault, as no one will or dare to accuse; let the Sheriff being thereunto required by him, cause twelve legal men of the Voisinage or of the Village, to swear before the Bi­shop, that they will manifest or make known the truth of the matter according to their Conscience.

52. Let no one who holds of the King in capite, nor any one of the Kings Officers or Servants of his Domain, be excommunicated; nor the Lands of any of them be put under an Interdict or prohibition; un­less first our Lord the King, if he be in the Land, be spoke with; or his Justice, if he be out of the Land, that they may do right by him: And so that what shall appertain to the Kings Court, may be determined there; and as to what shall belong to the Ecclesiastical Court, it may be sent thither and there treated of.

Other Laws of Church affairs. Concerning Appeals. A Suit betwixt a Clergyman and a Layman, where to be Tryed. In what case one, who relates to the King, may be put under an Interdict. The difference betwixt that and Excommunication. Bishops to be present at Tryals of Criminals, until Sentence of Death, &c. pass. Profits of vacant Bishopricks, &c. belong to the King. The next Bishop to be Chosen in the Kings Chappel, and to do Homage before Consecration. Deforcements to the Bishop, to be righted by the King. And on the contrary, Chattels forfeit to the King, not to be detained by the Church. Pleas of debts what­soever in the Kings Court. Yeomens Sons not to go into Orders without the Lords leave.

53. ‘COncerning Appeals,V. Rog. Hove­deu. fol. 303. if at any time there shall be occasion for them, they are to proceed from the Arch-Deacon to the Bi­shop, and from the Bishop to the Arch-Bishop; and if the Arch-Bishop shall be wanting in doing of Justice, they must come in the last place to our Lord the King; that by his precept or order, the Controversie may be determined in the Arch-Bishops Court, so as that it ought not to proceed any further without the Kings assent.’ This Law, long since,Coke prafat. ad Lib. 6. the famous Sir Edward Coke made use of, to assert and main­tain the Kings Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, as a thing not of late taken up by him, but anciently to him belonging.

54. If a Claim or Suit shall arise betwixt a Clergyman and a Lay-man, or betwixt a Layman and a Clergyman, concerning any Tene­ment which the Clergyman would draw to the Church, and the Lay-man to a Lay-fee; it shall by the recognizance of twelve legal men, upon the consideration and advisement of the Lord Chief Justice, be de­termined, whether the Tenement do appertain to Alms (i. e. to the Church) or to Lay-Estate, before the Kings own Justice. And if it shall be recognized or adjudged to appertain to Alms; it shall be a Plea in the Ecclesiastical Court: But if to a Lay-fee, unless they both avow or avouch the Tenement from the same Bishop or Baron, it shall be a Plea in the Kings Court. But if each of them shall for that fee avouch the same Bishop or [...]aron, it shall be a Plea in that Bishops or Barons Court; so that he who was formerly seised, shall not, by reason of the Recognizance made, lose the Seisin, till it shall by Plea be deraigned.

55. ‘He who shall be of a City, or a Castle, or a Burrough, or a Manner of the Kings Domain, if he shall be cited by an Arch-Deacon or a Bishop, upon any misdemeanour, upon which he ought to make answer to him, and refuse to satisfie upon their summons or citations; they may well and lawfully put him under an Interdict or Prohibition; but he ought not to be Excommunicated.’ (By the way) seasonably re­mark out of the Pontificial Law, that that Excommunication, they call [Page 73] the greater, removes a man and turns him out from the very Communi­on and Fellowship of the Faithful; and that an Interdict, as the lesser Excommunication, separates a man, and lays him aside only, forbidding him to be present at Divine Offices, and the use of the Sacraments.) ‘I say he ought not to be Excommunicated, before that the Kings Chief Justice of that Village or City be spoken with, that he may order him to come to satisfaction: And if the Kings Justice fail therein, he shall be at the Kings mercy, and thereupon or after that the Bishop may pu­nish him upon his impleadment, with the Justice of the Church.’

56. Arch-Bishops, Bishops, and all Persons whatsoever of the King­dom, who hold of the King in capite, and have their possessions from our Lord the King in nature of a Barony, and thereupon make answer to the Kings Justices and Officers, and perform all Rights and Customs due to the King as other Barons do; they ought to be present at the Tryals of the Court of our Lord the King with his Barons, until the losing of Limbs or death, be adjudged to the party tried.

57. When an Arch-Bishoprick or Bishoprick, or Abbacy, or Priory of the Kings Domain shall be void; it ought to be in his hand, and thereof shall he receive all the profits and issues as belonging to his Do­main: And when the Church is to be provided for, our Lord the King is to order some choice persons of the Church, and the Election is to be made in the Kings own Chappel, by the assent of our Lord the King, and by the advice of those persons of the Kingdom, whom he shall call for that purpose; and there shall the Person Elect (saving his order) before he be Consecrated, do Homage and Fealty to our Lord the King, as to his Liege Lord, for his life and limbs, and for his Earthly Ho­nour.

58. If any one of the Nobles or Peers do deforce to do Justice to an Arch-Bishop, Bishop, or Arch-Deacon, for themselves or those that belong to them; the King in this case is to do justice.

59. If peradventure any one shall deforce to the Lord the King his Right; the Arch-Bishop, Bishop, and Arch-Deacon, ought then in that case to do justice (or to take a course with him) that he may give the King satisfaction.

60. The Chattels of those who are in the Kings forfeit, let not the Church or Church-yard detain or keep back against the justice of the King; because they are the Kings own, whether they shall be found in Churches or without.

61. Pleas of debts which are owing, either with security given, or without giving security, let them be in the Kings Court.

62. The Sons of Yeomen or Country people, ought not to be ordain­ed or go into holy Orders, without the assent of the Lord, of whose Land they are known to have been born.

The Statutes of Clarendon mis-reported in Matthew Paris, a­mended in Quadrilegus. These Laws occasioned a Quarrel be­tween the King and Thomas a Becket. Witness Robert of Glocester, whom he calls Yumen. The same as Rusticks, i. e. Villains. Why a Bishop of Dublin called Scorch-Uil­lein. Villanage before the Normans time.

I Confess there is a great difference between these Laws and the Sta­tutes of Clarendon, put forth in the larger History of Matthew Paris, I mean those mangled ones: and in some places, what through great gaps of sence, disjointings of Sentences, and misplacings of words, much depraved ones, whose misfortune I ascribe to the carelesness of Transcri­bers. But the latter end of a Manuscript Book commonly called Quadri­legus, (wherein the Life of Thomas, Arch Bishop of Canterbury, is out of four Writers, to wit, Hubert of Boseham, John of Salisbury, William of Canterbury, and Alan, Abbot of Tewksbury, digested into one Volume) hath holp us to them amended as you may see here, and set to rights. It is none of our business to touch upon those quarrels, which arose upon the account of these Laws betwixt the King and Thomas of Canterbury: Our Historians do sufficiently declare them. In the mean time, may our Poet of Glocester have leave to return upon the Stage, and may his Verses written in ancient Dialect, comprising the matter which we have in hand, be favourably entertained.

No man ne might thenche the love that there was
Bitwene the K. H. and the good man S. Thomas;
The diuel had enui therto, and sed bitwen them feu,
Alas, alas thulke stond, vor all to well it greu.
Uor there had ere ibe kings of Luther dede
As W. Bastard, and his son W. the rede.
That Luther Laws made inou, and held in al the lond
The K. nold not beleue the lawes that he fond,
Ne that his elderne hulde, ne the godeman S. Thomas
Thought that thing age right neuer law nas.
Ne sothnes and custom mid strength up i [...]old,
And he wist that vre dere Lourd in the Gospel told
That he himselfe was sothnes, and custum nought,
Theruore Luther custumes he nould graent nought.
Ne the K. nould bileue that is elderne ad i [...]old,
So that conteke sprung bituene them manifold.
The K. drou to right law mani Luther custume,
S. Thomas they withsed, and granted some.
The Lawes that icholle now tell he granted vawe.
zuf a yuman hath a sone to clergi idraw
He ne sall without is lourdes icrouned nought be
Uor yuman ne mai nought be made agen is lourds will free.

[Page 75] Those that are born Slaves, or that other sort of servants termed Vil­lains, he calls by the name of Yumen. We call free born Commoners, alike as Servants, as it were with a badg of ignobleness or ungentility,40 Assis. pl 24. & 32. Ed. 3. [...]. Barr. 261. Yeomen; and those who of that number are married men, Gommen; for it was Gomman in the old Dutch, not Goodman, as we vulgarly pronounce it, which signified a married man. Words, as I am verily perswaded, made from the Latin, Homines; which very word, by En­nius and Festus, according to the Oscan Idiom, is written Hemones, and in our Language, which comes pretty near that spelling of the Poet, Yeomen. And the Etymon or Origination of the word it self, is very much confirmed by the opinion of some of our own Country Lawyers, who take (but with a mistake) Homines, i. e. men that do homage, and Nativos, i. e. born Slaves, in ancient Pleas to be terms equipollent, and of the same importance. The Constitution of Clarendon style those Ru­sticks or Countrymen, whom he calls Yumen; and Rusticks and Villains (those among the English were slaves or servants) were anciently synony­mous words, meaning the same thing. For whereas Henry Londres, Arch Bishop of Dublin, had treacherously committed to the flames, the Charters of his Rustick Tenants, the Free Tenants called him, as we read in the Annals of Ireland, Annal. Hiber. 1212. sub Henr. 3. Malmsb. l. 2. de gest. reg. c. 8. & Ingulph. fol. 519. Scorch-Uillein; as if one would say, the burner or firer of Villains.

Nor should I think it unseasonable in this place, to take notice of a mistake or oversight of Thomas Spott, a Monk of Canterbury; who writes, that the English, before the Norman Conquest, knew nothing of private servitude or bondage; i. e. had no such thing as Villanage among them: For he is convinced both by the Maid of Andover, Malmsb. l. 1. de gest. Pont. King Edgar's Miss, as also by the Laws signed and sealed by King Ina, and by that Donation or Grant Torald of Bukenhale made to Walgate, Abbot of Crowland: wherein among other things a great many servants are mentioned, with their whole suits and services. Take it also out of the Synod of London, Anselme being President of it) since here belike there is mention made of Servants) That no one henceforward presume to use that ungodly practice, which hitherto they were wont in England to do, to sell, or put to sale, men, (that is, Servants) like brute Beasts.

But we do not do civilly to interrupt the Poet: We must begin again with him; he once more tunes his Pipes.

Another thing he granted eke as ye mow novise;
Yuf a man of holi Chirch hath eni lay see,
Parson, other what he be, he ssal do therevore
Kings service that there valth, that is right ne be vorlore,
In plaiding and in assise be and in judgement also.
Bote war man ssal be bilemed, other to deth ido.
Be granted eke yuf eni man the Kings traitor were,
And eni man is chateux to holi chirch here
That holi chirch ne solde nought the chateux there let
That the K. there other is as is owne is ne wette.
Uor all that the felon hath the Kings it is
And eche man mai in holi church is owne take iwis.
He granted eke that a chirche of the Kings fe
In none stede ene and ever ne ssold igiue be
As to hous of religion, without the Kings leve,
And that he other the patron the gift first gave.
S. Thomas granted well these and other mo
And these other he withsede that did him well woe.
Yuf bituene twei leud men were eni striving,
Other bituene a leud and a clerc, for holi chirch thing
As vor vouson of chirch whether shold the chirch giue,
The K. wold that in his court the ple ssold be driue;
Uor as much as a leud man that the o parti was
Chanliche was under the K. & under no bishop nas.

The Poet gives account which of those Laws were granted by Thomas a Becket, which withstood. Leudemen signifies Laymen, and more generally all illiterate Persons.

THat which this Author of ours calls Leudemen, the Interpreters of Law, both our Common and the Canon Law call Laicks, or Laymen. For as [...], i. e. people, as it is derived by Caesar Germanicus, Caes. Germ. ad Arat. In Aqua­rio. upon Araetus his Phaenomena after Pindar, [...], i. e. from a Stone, denotes a hard and promiscuous kind of men; so the word Leudes im­ports the illiterate herd,Pindar. Olym. 9. the multitude or rabble, and all those who are not taken into holy Orders.Lips. Polior­cet. lib. 1. dis­sert. 2. Justus Lipsiu [...] in his Poliorceticks, discour­ses this at large; where he searches out the origination of Leodium or Liege, the chief City of the Eburones in the Netherlands. As to what concerns our language, John Gowes and Jeoffry Chaucer, who were the Reformers and Improvers of the same in Verse, do both make it good. Thus Jeoffry. Chauc. in Pro­log. of the Sumners tale.

No wonder is a leude man to rust
If a Priest be foule on whom we trust.

However, that it signifies an illiterate or unlearned person, as well as one not yet in orders; what he saith elsewhere, informs us. ‘This every leud Uicar and Parson can say.’ And Peter of Blois, Pet. Blesens. app. ad In­gulph. and others, use this expression; as well Laymen as Scholars. But let not Chaucer take it ill, that here he must give way to our Glocester Muse.

Another was that no clere, ne bishop nath mo,
Ne ssolde without Kings leue out of the lond go.
And that hii ssolde suere up the boke ywis.
That hii ne sold purchas no uvel the K. ne none of is.
The third was yuf eni man in mausing were I brought,
And suth come to amendment, ne age were nought
That he ne suore vp the boc, ac borowes find solde
To stand to that holy Chirch there of him toky wold.
The verth was that no man that of the K. buld ought
In cheife or in eni servise in mausing were ibrought,
Bote the wardeins of holy chirch that brought him thereto,
The K. sede or is bailifes wat he ad misdo,
And loked verst were thei to amendment it bring,
And bote hii wolde by their leue do the mausing.
The vift was, that bishoprikes and Abbeis also
That vacans were of prelas in the K. hand were ido,
[Page 78] And that the K. sold all the land as is owne take,
Uort at last that him lust eni prelat there make.
And than thulke prelat sould in is chapel ichose be.
Of is clarks which he wuld to such prelace bise.
And than wan he were ichose in is chapel right yere,
Homage he solde him do ar he confirmed were.
The sixt was yuf eni play to chapitle wore idraw,
And eni man made is appele, yuf me dude him unlaw,
That to the Bishop from Ercedeken is appele sold make,
And from Bishop to Arcebissop and suth none other take,
And but the Ercebisops court to right him wold bring,
That he sold from him be cluthe biuore the King.
And from the K. non other mo so that attan end
Plaining of holi chirch to the K. shold wend.
And the K. amend solde the Ercebissops dede,
And be as in the Popes stude, and S. Thomas it withsede.
The seuethe was that plaiding that of det were
To yeld wel thoru truth i [...]light, and nought i [...]old nere
Althei thoru truth it were, that ple sold be ibrought
Biuore the K. and is bailies and to holy chirch nought.
The eighth that in the lond citation none nere
Thoru bull of the Pope of Rome, and clene bileued were.
The nithe was that Peters pence that me gadereth manion
The Pope nere nought on isend, ac the K. echone.
The tethe was yuf eni Clarke as felon were itake,
And vor felon iproved and ne might it not forsake,
That me sold him verst disordein and suth thoru there law.
And thoru judgement of the land hong him other to draw.
Uor these and vor other mo the Godeman S. Thomas
Fleu verst out of England and eke imartred was,
Uor he sei there nas hote o way other he must stiffe be
Other holy chirch was isent, that of right was so fre.

The Pope absolves Thoms a Becket from his Oath, and damns the Laws of Clarendon. The King resents it, writes to his She­riffs, Orders a Scisure. Penalties inflicted on Kindred. He provides against an Interdict from Rome. He summons the Bi­shops of London and Norwich. An Account of Peter Pence.

TO the Laws of Clarendon, which I spoke of, the States of the King­dom (the Baronage) and with them the Arch-Bishop of Canterbu­ry, took their Oaths in solemn manner, calling upon God. There were Embassadors sent to Pope Alexander the third, that there might be that bottom also, that he would further confirm and ratifie them. But he was so far from doing that, that he did not only pretend that they did too much derogate from the priviledge of the Clergy, and wholly refuse to give his assent to them; but also having absolved Thomas the Arch-Bishop, at his own request, from the obligation of that Oath he had bound himself with, he condemned them as impious, and such as made against the interest and honour of holy Church. King Henry, as soon as he heard of it, took it, as it was fit he should, very much in dudgeon; grievously and most deservedly storming at the insolence of the Roman Court, and the Treachery of the Bishop of Canterbury. Immediately Letters were dispatcht to the several Sheriffs of the respective Counties, ‘That if any Clerk or Layman in their Bayliwicks, should appeal to the Court of Rome, they should seise him and take him into firm custody; till the King give order what his pleasure is: And that they should seise into the Kings hand, and for his use, all the Revenues and Possessions of the Arch-Bishops Clerks; and of all the Clerks that are with the Arch-Bishop; they should put by way of safe pledge the Fathers, Mothers, and Sisters, Nephews and Neeces, and their Chattels, till the King give order what his pleasure is.’ I have told the Story out of Matthew Paris.

You see in this instance a penalty, where there is no fault: It affects or reaches to their Kindred both by Marriage and Blood? a thing not un­usual in the declension of the Roman Empire after Angust [...]s his time. But let misdemeanors hold or oblige those who are the Authors of them (was the Order of Arcali [...]s and Honorius, C. de poenis. l. 21. sanci­mus. Emperors, to the Lord Chief Justice E [...] ­t [...]chianus) nor let the fear of punishment proceed further than the offence is found. A very usual right among the English, whereby bating the ta­king away the Civil Rights of Blood and Nobility,V. Canut. leg. 74. none of the Posterity or Family of those who lose their honours, do for the most hainous crimes of their Parents, undergo any penalties.

But this was not all, in those Letters I mentioned, he added threats also.

63. ‘If any one shall be sound carrying Letters or a Mandate from the Pope, or Thomas, Arch-Bishop of Canterbury, containing an interdiction of Christian Religion in England, let him be seised and kept in hold, and let Justice be done upon him without delay, as a Traitor against the King and Kingdom.’ This Roger of Hoveden stands by, ready to witness.

[Page 80] 64. ‘Let the Bishops of London and Norwich be summon'd, that they may be before the Kings Justices to do right (i. e. to answer to their charge, and to make satisfaction) that they have contrary to the Statutes of the Kingdom, interdicted the Land of Earl Hugh, and have inflicted a sentence of Excommunication upon him.’ This was Hugh Bigod, Earl of Norfolk.

65. ‘Let St. Peters pence be collected, or gathered, and kept safe.’ Those Pence were a Tribute or Alms granted first by Ina King of the West-Saxons; yearly at Lammas to be gathered from as many as ‘had thirty pence (as we read it in the Confessor's Laws) of live-mony in their house.’ These were duly, at a set time, paid in, till the time of Henry the eighth, when he set the Government free from the Papal Tyranny: About which time Polydore Virgil was upon that account in England, Treasurer, or Receiver general.Fox. in hist. Eccles. Ed. 2. Rescript. dat. 10. Kal. Maii ap. Veterem urbem, Pon­tificat. 2. I thought fit to set down an ancient brief account of these pence, out of a Rescript of Pope Gregory to the Arch-Bishops of Canterbury and York, in the time of King Edward the second.


It amounts to three hundred Marks and a Noble; that is, two hun­dred Pounds sterling, and six Shillings and eight Pence.

You are not to expect here the murder of Thomas a Becket, and the story how King Henry was purged of the crime, having been absolved upon hard terms. ‘Conveniunt cymbae vela minora me [...].’ ‘My little Skiff bears not so great a Sail.’

A Parliament at Northampton. Six Circuits ordered. A List of the then Justices. The Jury to be of twelve Knights. Several sorts of Knights. In what cases Honorary Knights to serve in Juries. Those who come to Parliament by right of Peerage, sit as Barons. Those who come by Letters of Summons, are styled Chevaliers.

NOt long after, the King and the Barons meet at Northampton. They treat concerning the Laws and the administration of Justice: At length the Kingdom being divided into six Provinces or Circuits, there are chosen from among the Lawyers, some, who in every of those Pro­vinces might preside in the Seat of Justice, Commissioned by the Name of Itinerant Justices, or Justices in Eyre. See here the List and Names of those Justices out of Hoveden.

  • Hugh de Cressi.
  • Walter Fitz-Robert.
  • Robert Mantel.


  • Norfolk.
  • Suffolk.
  • Cambridge.
  • Huntington.
  • Bedford.
  • Buckingham.
  • Essex.
  • Hertford.
  • Hugh de Gundeville.
  • William Fitz-Ralph.
  • William Basset.


  • Lincoln.
  • Nottingham.
  • Darby.
  • Stafford.
  • Warwick.
  • Northampton.
  • Leicester.
  • Robert Fitz-Bernard.
  • Richard Gifford.
  • Roger Fitz-Reinfrai.


  • Kent.
  • Surrey.
  • Southampton.
  • Sussex.
  • Barkshire.
  • Oxford.
  • William Fitz-Steeven.
  • Bertam de Uerdun.
  • Turstan Eitz-Simon.


  • Hereford.
  • Glocester.
  • Worcester.
  • Shropshire.

[Page 82]

  • Ralph Fitz-Steeven.
  • William Ruffus.
  • Gilbert Pipard.


  • Wiltshire.
  • Dorsetshire.
  • Somersetshire.
  • Devonshire.
  • Cornwall.
  • Robert de Wals.
  • Ralph de Glanville.
  • Robert Pikenot.


  • York.
  • Richmond.
  • Lancashire.
  • Copland.
  • Westmoreland.
  • Northumberland.
  • Cumberland.

‘These he made to take an Oath, that they would themselves, bona fide, in good faith, and without any deceit or trick, ('tis the same Au­thor whose words I make use of) keep the under-written Assizes, and cause them inviolably to be kept by the men of the Kingdom.’ He men­tions them under this specious Title.

The ASSISES of King HENRY, made at Clarendon, and renew­ed at Northampton.

66. ‘If any one be called to do right (or be served with a Writ) before the Justices of our Lord the King, concerning Murder, or Theft, or Robbery, or the receiving and harbouring of those who do any such thing; or concerning Forgery, or wicked setting fire of houses, &c. let him upon the Oath of twelve Knights of the Hundred; or if there be no Knights there, then upon the Oath of twelve free and lawful men, and upon the Oath of four men out of each Village of the Hundred, let him go to the Ordeal of Water, and if he perish, i. e. sink, let him lose one foot.’ The Knights who are wanting here, are perhaps those who hold by Knights service, or if you had rather, that hold by Fee; betwixt whom, and those who served in War for wages or pay, which in the Books of Fees are called Solidatae (the same peradventure as by Cae­sar are termed Soldurii, Ca [...]s. comm. l. 3. Ath. dipn. l. 6. Feud. l. 2. tit. 20. Otho Fris. lib. de Frederic. 1. Radevic. l. 1. c. 26. that is, Soldiers; by Nicolaus Damascenus, [...], by our Monks, Bracton, Otho Frisingensis, and Radevicus, in the Camp Laws of Barbarossa, are styled Servientes, that is, Serjeants) there is an apparent difference; both of them being placed far below the dignity of those honorary Knights, who are called Equites aurati.

But yet I do very well know, that these honorary Knights also were of old time,Bract. l. 5. de Esson [...]is, c. 10. & 26 Ed. 3. fo. 57. a. 30 Ed. 3. fol. 2. 6. v. 17 Ed. 2. tit. Attaint. 60. 1 [...] Ed. 3. tit. Challenge. 115. Plo. com. fol. 117. 8 H. 6. fol. 10. and are now by a most certain right called forth to some Tryals by Jury. To the Kings Great or Grand Assise (I say) and to a Suit of Law contested, when a Baron of Parliament is Party on one side, i. e. Plaintiff or Defendant. To the Assise, in that it is the most solemn and honourable way of Tryal, and that which puts an utter end to the claim of the Party that is cast. To such an unequal suit, that there may be some equality of Name or Title as to some one, at least, of the Judges (for the Jury or twelve men are upon such occasion Judges made) [Page 83] and as to the more honourable of the two parties, whether Plaintiff or Defendant. For the Peers of Parliament, who are the greater Nobles (amongst whom by reason of their Baronies, Arch-Bishops and Bishops, heretofore a great many Abbots) such as are Dukes, Marquesses, Earls, Viscounts, and Barons; who though they be distinguished by Order and honorary Titles, yet nevertheless they sit in Parliament, only as they are Barons of the Realm. And those who at the Kings pleasure are called in by Letters of summons, as Lawyers term it, are styled Chevaliers, not Barons. For that of Chevalier was a Title of Dig­nity; this of Baron anciently rather of Wealth, and great Estate. Which Title only such Writs of Summons bestowed till Richard the seconds time, who was the first that by Patent made John Bea [...] ­champ of Holt, Baron of Kiderminster: Now both ways are in fashion.

The person convict by Ordeal, to quit the Realm within Forty dayes. Why Forty dayes allowed. An account of the Ordeals by Fire and Water. Lady Emme clear'd by going over burning Coulters. Two sorts of tryal by Water. Learned conjectures at the rise and reason of these customs. These Ordeals, as also that of single Combat condemned by the Church.

67. ‘AT Northampton it was added for the rigour of Justice, (re­member what was said in the foregoing Chapter) that he should in like manner lose his right Hand or Fist with his Foot, and for­swear the Realm, and within Forty Dayes go out of the Kingdom into banishment.’ (He had the favour of Forty Dayes allowed him, so saith Bracton, Bract. tract. de Coron. l. 3. that in the mean time he might get help of his friends to make provision for his Passage and Exile.) ‘And if upon the tryal by water he be clean, i. e. innocent, let him find pledges, and remain in the Realm, unless he be arighted for Murder, or any base Felony, by the Commu­nity or Body of the County, and of the Legal Knights of the Countrey, concerning which, if he be arighted in manner aforesaid, although he be clean by the tryal of Water; nevertheless let him quit the Realm within Forty Dayes, and carry away his Chattels along with him, sa­ving the right of his Lords, and let him forswear the Realm at the mer­cy of our Lord the King.’

Here let me say a little concerning the Tryal by Fire and Water, or the Ordeals. It is granted, that these were the Saxons wayes of tryal, rashly and unadvisedly grounded upon Divine Miracle. They do more appertain to Sacred Rites, than to Civil Customs; for which reason we past them by in the former Book, and this place seemed not unseasonable to put the Reader in mind of them. ‘He who is accused, is bound to clear himself ('tis Ralph Glanvill writes this) by the Judgement of God,Glanv. l. 14. c. 1. to wit, by hot burning Iron, or by Water, according to the dif­ferent condition of men: by burning hot Iron, if it be a free-man; by Water,Polydor. hist. l. 8. Matth. Park. in vit. Rob. Archiep. Cant. if he be a Countrey-man or Villain.’ The party accused did carry in his hand a piece of Iron glowing hot, going for the most part two or three steps or paces along, or else with the soles of his feet did walk upon red hot Plough-shares or Coulters, and those, according to the Laws of the Franks and Lombards, nine in number. The Lady Emme the Confessor's Mother being impeached of Adultery with Aldwin Bishop of Winton, was wonderfully cleared by treading upon so many, and is famous for it in our Histories, being preserved safe from burning, and proved innocent from the Crime.

There were two sorts of watery Ordeal or tryal by Water; to wit, cold or scalding hot. The party was thrown into the cold water, as in some places at this day Witches are used: he who did not by little and little sink to the bottom, was condemned as guilty of the Crime, as one whom that Element, which is the outward sign in the Sacrament of Regenera­tion, did not admit into its bosome. As to scalding Water, ones arm [Page 85] in that manner thrust in up to the elbow, made a discovery of the truth; and Aelstan a Monk of Abendon, afterward Bishop of Shirburn, thrusting in his bare Hand into a boiling Cauldron, shewed himself with some pride to his Abbot.

But that they say,Malmesh. l. 2. de gest. Pon­tif. that Rusticks or Vassals only were tryed by Water, (for Water is ascribed to the earthly and ignoble nature, Fire to the heaven­ly; so that from the use of Fire peculiar to man,Lact. Instit. l. 7. de divin. praem. c. 9. Hoveden. an­nal. l. 2. Firmianus Lactantius hath fetcht an argument for the Immortality of the Soul) that this is not altogether so true, is made out by that one example of John, a Noble and Rich old man, who in the time of King Henry the Second, when, be­ing charged with the death of his Brother the Earl of Ferrers, he could not acquit himself by the Watery Tryal, was hang'd on a Gallows.

Whence or by what means both these Customs were brought in among Christians, 'tis none of my business to make an over strait inqui­ry. I remember that Fire among the Ancients was accounted purga­tive;Coel. Rhod. antiq. sect. l. 17. c. 21. and there is one in a Tragedy of Sophocles intitled Antigone, who of his own accord profest to King Creon,

Sophocles in Antigone.

That in his hands be red-hot gads would kéep,
And over burning gleads would bare-foot créep.

[...]o shew himself innocent as to the Burial of Polynices. I pass by in si­lence that Pythagorical opinion,Arist. 2. de Coelo. which placeth Fire in the Centre of the Universe, where Jupiter hath his Prison; which Fire some, however the Peripateticks stiffly oppose it, would have to be in plain terms the Sun, ‘— [...].Iliad. 3. ‘Who all things overlooks, and all things hears.’ Yet I shall not omit this,Deut. 4. zanch. de nat. Dei, l. 1. c. 6. Reuchl. de verb. m [...]rif. l. 2. c. 16. Psalm 104. Hebr. 1. 7. that in the holy Bible the great and gracious God hath of a truth discovered himself to mortal conception in the very name of Fire, [...], as a thing agreeable to Divinity, as saith John Reu­chlin; and that S. Paul hath, according to the Psalmists mind, stiled the Ministers of God, a flame of fire. And indeed to abuse the holy Scri­ptures, by mis-interpreting them, is a custom too ancient and too too common.

Homer and Virgil both sing of

—Imperjuratam Stygiamque paludem,
Aeneld. 6.
Dii cujus jurare timent & fallere numen.

that is,

—Th' unperjur'd Stygian lake,
Whose name the Gods do fear in vain to take.

[Page 86] We read of the Infants of the Celts, [...].Anthol. [...]. Epigr. [...].

Try'd in the streams of sacred Flood,
Whether of right or of ba [...]e blood;

as it is in the Greek Epigrams: Polyhist. l. 1. c. 10. Ovid. Fast. 2. Senec. Ep. 41. of the fountains of Sardinia, in Solinus: of the moist Februa, or purifications by water, in Ovids Fastorum: and of those Rivers that fell from Heaven, and their most wonderful and hidden natures, among Natural Philosophers. But most of these things were not known peradventure in our Ordeals. Yet Martin Del Rio, a man of various Reading and exquisite Learning,Mart. del Rio disq mag. l. 4. sect. 3. & 4. hath in his Magical In­quiries offered a conjecture, that the tryal by Water crept into use from a paltry imitation of the Jews Cup of Jealousie.

Truth is, a great many instances both of this way of trying by Water and of that by Fire, are afforded by the Histories of the Danes, Saxons, Germans, Franks, Spaniards, in a word, of the whole Christian World.

An quia cunctarum concordia semina rerum,
Ovid. Fast. 4.
Sunt duo discordes Ignis & Vnda dei,
Junxerunt elementa Patres?

was it, saith the Poet,

'Cause the two diff'ring Gods,
Alwayes at ods,
That of Water, that of Fire,
Which yet in harmony conspire
The seeds of all things fitly joyn'd;
Therefore our Fathers have these two combin'd.

Or was it, because that the Etymologie of the Word [...] Hashamaim, that is,Pic. Mirandu­la in Hepta­plo. Heaven, (for the Heavens themselves were the feigned Gods of the Gentiles) some are pleased with the deriving it from [...] Esh, i. e. Fire and [...] Maim, i. e. Water: Let some more knowing Janus tell you. ‘— [...].Pindar. Olymp. 3.

For my part I shall not this game pursue;
Why should I lose my time and labour too?

The superstitions and fopperies, the rites and usages, the lustrations and purifyings, the Prayers and Litanies, and the solemn preparations (in consecrating and conjuring the Water, &c.) you have in Will. Lam­bard in his Explications of Law terms, Vit [...] Roberti. and in Matthew Parker Arch-Bi­shop of Canterbury in his Antiquities of the Brittish Church. Both of them together, with that other of single Combat or Duel (for that also was reckoned among the Ordeals) were judged by the Church of Rome to beDecret. tit. de vulgar. pur­gat. [...]us. 2. qu [...]st. 5. impious customs; and it is long since that they have been laid aside, and not put in practice among the common ordinary wayes of peoples purging and clearing themselves.

[Page 87] Well, now let me come back to my own Country again, and return to Northampton.

Other Laws: Of entertaining of strangers. An Uncuth, a Gust, a Hogenhine; what of him who confesseth the Murder, &c. Of Frank pledge. Of an Heir under age. Of a Widows Dowry. Of taking the Kings fealty. Of setting a time to do homage. Of the Justices duty. Of their demolishing of Castles. Of Felons to be put into the Sheriffs hands. Of those who have de­parted the Realm.

68. ‘LEt it be lawful for no man, neither in Borough nor in Vil­lage or place of entertainment, to have or keep in his house, beyond one night, any stranger, whom he will not hold to right, (that is, answer for his good behaviour) unless the person entertain'd shall have a reasonable Essoin or excuse, which the Master or Host of the house is to shew to his neighbours; and when the Guest departs, let him depart in presence of the neighbours, and in the day time.’ Hither belongs that of Bracton. ‘He may be said to be of ones family,Bract. l. 3. tract. 2. c. 10. & Canuti leges. who shall have lodged with another for the space of three nights; in that the first night he may be called Uncuth, i. e. Unknown, a Stranger; but the se­cond night Gust, i. e. a Guest or Lodger; the third night Hogenhine (I read Hawan man) i. e. in Greek [...], in Latin Familia­ris, one of the family.’

69. ‘If any one shall be seised for Murder, or for Theft, or Robbery, or Forgery, and be knowing thereof, (i. e. shall confess it) or for any other Felony which he shall have done, before the Provost (the Master or Bailiff of the Hundred or Borough, and before lawful men, he cannot deny it afterwards before the Justices. And if the same per­son without Seisin’ (with Seisin in this place is the same as [...], as we commonly say in our Language, taken with the manner) shall ‘re­cognize or acknowledge any thing of this nature before them, this also in like manner he shall not be able to deny before the Justices.’

70. If any one shall dye holding in Frank Pledge (i. e. having a free Tenure) let his heirs remain in such Seisin, as their Father had on the day he was alive and dyed, of his fee, and let them have his Chat­tels, out of which they may make also the devise or partition of the de­ceased, (that is, the sharing of his goods according to his will) and afterwards may require of their Lord, and do for their relief and other things, which they ought to do as touching their Fee (i. e. in order to their entring upon the estate.)

[Page 88] 71. If the heir be under age, let the Lord of the Fee take his ho­mage, and have him in custody or keeping for as long time as he ought; let the other Lords, if there be more of them, take his homage, and let him do to them that which he ought to do.

72. ‘Let the Wife of the deceased have her Dowry, and that part of his Chattels, which of right comes to her.’ In former times perad­venture it was a like generally practised by the English, that the Wife and Children should have each their lawful Thirds of the estate; (each of them, I say, if they were in being; but half to the Wife, if there were no issue; and as much to the Children, if the Wife did not survive her Husband:) as it was practised by the Romans of old accor­ding to the Falcidian Law, and of later time by the Novells of Justinian, that they should have their Quarter▪ part. For I see that those of Nor­mandy, of Arras, of Ireland, people that lay round about them, had the same custom. Of this you are to see Glanvill, Bracton, the Register of Briefs or Writs, and William Lindwood, beside the Records or yearly Re­ports of our Law.

73. Let the Justices take the Fealties of our Lord the King before the close of Easter, and at furthest before the close of Pentecost; namely, of all Earls, Barons, Knights and Free-holders, and even of Rusticks or Vassals, such as have a mind to stay in the Realm; and he who will not do featly, let him be taken into custody as an enemy of our Lord the King.

74. The Justices have also this to give in charge, that all those, who have not as yet done their homage and allegiance to our Lord the King, do at a term of time; which they shall name to them, come in and do homage and allegiance to the King as to their Liege Lord.

75. ‘Let the Justices do all acts of Justice and rights belonging to our Lord the King by a Writ of our Lord the King, or of them who shall be in his place or stead, as to a half-Knights fee and under; ’(a Knights' fee in an old Book, which pretends to more antiquity by far than it ought, concerning the manner of holding Parliaments, is said to be twenty pounds worth of Land in yearly revenue, but the number prefixt before the Red Book of the Exchequer goes at the rate of Six Hundred and Eighty Acres:) ‘unless the complaint be of that great concern, that it cannot be determined without our Lord the King, or of that nature that the Justices by reason of their own doubting refer it to him, or to those who shall be in his place and stead. Nevertheless let them to the ut­most of their ability intend and endeavour the service and advantage of our Lord the King.’

76. Let the Justices provide and take care, that the Castles already demolisht, be utterly demolished, and that those that are to be demo­lished, be well levelled to the ground. And if they shall not do this, our Lord the King may please to have the judgement of his Court against them, as against those who shew contempt of his Precept.

[Page 89] 77. A Thief or Robber, as soon as he is taken, let him be put into the Sheriffs hands to be kept in safe custody; and if the Sheriff shall be out of the way, let him be carried or brought to the next Con­stable of a Castle, and let him have him in custody, until he deliver him up to the Sheriff.

78. Let the Justices according to the custom of the Land, cause in­quiry to be made of those, who have departed or gone out of the Realm. And if they shall refuse to return within a term of time that shall be named, and to stand to right in the Kings Court (i. e. to make their appearance, and there to answer, if any thing shall be brought in against them) let them after that be outlawed, and the names of the Outlaws be brought at Easter and at the Feast of St. Michael to the Ex­chequer, and from thence be sent to our Lord the King.

These Laws were agreed upon at Northampton.

Some Laws in favour of the Clergy. Of forfeitures on the account of Forest or hunting. Of Knights fees. Who to bear Arms, and what Arms. Arms not to be alienated. No Jew to bear Arms. Arms not to be carryed out of England. Rich men under suspi­cion to clear themselves by Oath. Who allowed to swear against a Free-man. Timber for building of Ships not to be carryed out of England. None but Free-men to bear Arms. Free-men who. Rusticks or Villains not such.

79. ‘THat henceforth a Clergy-man be not dragg'd and drawn be­fore a Secular Judge personally for any crime or transgres­sion,Matth. Paris. unless it be for Forest or a Lay-fee, out of which a Lay-service is due to the King, or to some other Secular Lord.’This priviledge of the Clergy the King granted to Hugh the Popes Cardinal Legate, by the Title of S. Michael à Petra, who arrived here on purpose to advance the Popish interest.

80. Furthermore, that Arch-Bishopricks, Bishopricks or Abbacies be not held in the Kings hand above a year, unless there be an evident cause, or an urgent necessity for it.

81. That the Murderers or Slayers of Clergy-men being convicted, or having confest before a Justice or Judge of the Realm, be punished in the presence of the Bishop.

82. That Clergy-men be not obliged to make Duel:V. Britton. cap. d' Ap­pe [...]les, and temp. Ed. 1. [...]. Quod per­mittat. 9. i. e. not to clear themselves, as others upon some occasion did, by single combat.

83. He ordained at Woodstock (we transcribe these words out of Hoveden) that whosoever should make a forfeit to him concerning his Forest, or his hunting once, he should be tyed to find safe Pledges or Sureties; and if he should make a second forfeit, in like manner safe Pledges should be taken of him; but if the same person should forfeit the third time, then for his third forfeit, no pledges should be taken, but the proper body of him who made the forfeit.

Moreover, we meet with these Military Laws, or Laws of Knights fees, made for Tenants and other people of the common sort.

84. He who hath one Knights fee ('tis the aforesaid Hoveden speaks) let him have an Habergeon or Coat of Male, and a Helmet or Head▪ piece and a Buckler or Target and a Lance: and let every Knight have so many Habergeons, and Helmets, and Targets, and Lances, as he shall have Knights fees in his demeans.

85. Whatsoever Free-holder that is a Lay-man, shall have in Chattel [Page 91] or in Rent and Revenue to the value of Sixteen Marks, let him have a Coat of Male, and a Head-piece, and a Buckler, and a Lance.

86. Whatsoever Lay person being a Free-man, shall have in Chattel to the value of Ten Marks, let him have a little Habergeon, or Coat of Male, and a Capelet of Iron, and a Lance.

87. Let all Burghers or Towns-men of a Corporation, and the whole Communities of Free-men have a Wambais, and a Capelet of Iron, and a Lance.

88. Let no one, after he hath once had these Arms, sell them, nor pawn them, nor lend them, nor by any other way alienate them from himself, or part with them: nor let his Lord alienate them by any manner of way from his man (i. e. his Tenant that holds under him) neither by forfeit, nor by gift, nor by pledge, nor by any other way.

89. If any one shall dye having these Arms, let them remain to his heir; and if the heir be not of such estate or age, that he may use the Arms, if there shall be need, [...] let that person▪ who shall have them (the heir) in custody, have likewise the keeping of the Arms, and let him find a man, who may use the Arms in the service of our Lord the King, if there shall be need, until the heir shall be of such estate, that he may bear Arms, and then let him have them.

90. Whatsoever Burgher shall have more Arms, than it shall be­hove him to have, according to this Assize, let him sell them, or give them away, or so dispose of them from himself to some other man, who may retain them in England in the service of our Lord the King.

91. Let no one of them keep by him more Arms, than if shall be­hove him according to this Assize to have.

92. Let no Jew keep in his possession a Coat of Male or an Haber­geon, but let him sell them, or give them, or in some other manner put them away, in that wise that they may remain in the service of the King of England.

93. Let no man bear or carry Arms out of England, unless it be by special order of our Lord the King; nor let any one sell Arms to any one, who may carry them from England; nor let Merchant or other carry or convey them from England.

94. ‘They who are suspected by reason of their wealth or great estate, do free or acquit themselves by giving their Oaths.’ The Justices have Power or Jurisdiction given them in the case for this pur­pose. ‘If there shall be any, who shall not comply with them (the Justices) the King shall take himself to the members or limbs of such persons, and shall by no means take from them their Lands or Chattels.’

[Page 92] 95. Let no one swear upon lawful and free-men, (i.e. in any mat­ter against or concerning them) who hath not to the value of Sixteen or Ten Marks in Chattel.

96. Let no one, as he loves himself and all that he hath, buy or sell any Ship to be brought from England; nor let any one carry, or cause to be carryed out of England Timber for the building of Ships.

97. Let no one be received or admitted to the Oath of bearing Arms but a Free-man.

To bring once for all something concerning a Free man, that may not be beside the purpose. The ancient Law of England bestowed that name only upon such persons, as many as, either being honoured by the Nobi­lity of their Ancestors, or else out of the Commonalty being of in­genuous Birth (to wit, of the Yeomanry) did not hold that rustick fee or Tenure of Villenage) dedicated to Stercutius (the God of Dunghils) and necessarily charged and burthened with the Plough tail, the Wain, and the Dray, which are the hard Countrey-folks Arms and Imple­ments. To this purpose makes the term of Rustick or Countrey-man above mentioned in the Statutes of Clarendon, and the place of Glanvill cited in the Tryal of Ordeal.

That the business may be more clearly asserted; a Suit of Law being waged in the time of Edward the First,Temp. Ed. 1. tit. Attorney, 103. betwixt John Levin Plaintiff and the Prior of Bernwell Defendant (I have taken the Story out of an old Ma­nuscript, and the Reports of our Law, and the Collection or Body of the Royal Rescripts do agree to it) it was then, after several disputes bandied to and fro, and with earnestness enough, decided by the judge­ment of the Court, that those Tenants which hold in fee from the anci­ent Domain of the Crown, as they call it, are by no means comprehended under the title of free-men; as those who driving their labour around throughout the year pay their daily Vows to Ceres the Goddess of Corn, to Pales the Goddess of Shepherds, and to Triptolemus the Inventer of Husbandry or Tillage, and keep a quarter with their Gee Hoes about their Chattel.

And now death hath put an end to King Henry's Reign. And I also having made an end of his Laws, so far as Histories do help me out, do at the last muster and arm my Bands for the guard of my Frontiers. I wish they may be of force enough against Back-biters.

Of Law-makers. Our Kings not Monarchs at first. Several of them in the same County. The Druids meeting-place where. Un­der the Saxons, Laws made in a general Assembly of the States. Several instances. This Assembly under the Normans called Parliament. The thing taken from a custome of the ancient Germans. Who had right to sit in Parliament. The harmony of the Three Estates.

BUt however Laws are not without their Makers and their Guardians, or they are to no purpose. It remaineth therefore that we say somewhat in general of them. They are made either by Use and Custom (for things that are approved by long Use, do obtain the force of Law) or by the Sanction and Authority of Law-givers. Of ancient time the Semnothei, the Kings and the Druids were Law-givers; amongst the Britans I mean.

Concerning the Semnothei whatsoever doth occurr you had before.

The Kings were neither Monarchs of the whole Island, nor so much as of that part of Brittany that belonged to the Angles. For there were at the same time over the single County of Kent four Kings; to wit, Cyngetorix, Carvilius, Taximagulus, and Segonax; and at the same rate in other Counties. Wherefore we have no reason to make any question, but that part wherein we live, now called England, was governed by several persons, and was subject to an Aristocracy: according to what Polydore Virgil, John Twine, Polyd. hist. Angl. 2. Tuin. Com. de. reb. Albion. Dav. Pouel. in Epist. Guli. Flèetwode. David Powell and others have infor­med us.

The Druids were wont to meet, to explain the Laws in being, and to make new ones as occasion required, as is most likely, in some cer­tain place designed for that purpose; as now at this very time all mat­ters of Law go to be decided at Spire in Germany, at Westminster-Hall in England, and Paris in France.

Their publick Convention or Meeting-place was constantly, as Julius Caesar tells us,Cas. l. 6. de bell. Gall. in the borders of the Carnutes the middle Region of all France. Some think that a Town at eight Miles distance from the Metropolis of those people commonly called Dreux, Paul. Merula. was designed for that use.

Whilst the Saxons governed, the Laws were made in the General As­sembly of the States or Parliament. In the front of King Ina's Laws ('tis above Eight Hundred and Eighty years that he first reigned) we read thus, It Ine mid godes gift West-Saxna Cyning mid getbeat a mid lere Cenredes mines fader a hedde a Erconwald mine hiscops a mid eallum minum, ealdor mannum, & tham yldestan Witan mi­nes theode be beodeth, &c. which in our present. English speaks thus, I Ina by the Grace of God King of the West-Saxons, by the advice and or­der of Kenred my Father, and of Hedda and Erconwald my Bishops, and of all my Aldermen, and of the Elders and Wise Men of my people, do command, &c. There are a great many instances of this kind in other places.In [...]ulph. Moreover Witlaf and Bertulph, who were Kings of the Merci­ans [Page 94] near upon Eight hundred years ago, do in their instruments under ‘their hands make mention of Synods and Councils of the Prelates and Peers convened for the affairs of the Kingdom.’ Camden. And an ancient Book has this passage of Abendon, ‘Here was the Royal Seat, hither when they were to treat of the principal and difficult points of State, and affairs of the Kingdom, the people were used to meet and flock together.’ To this may be added that which Malmesbury sayes of King Edward in the year of our Lord 903. ‘The King gathered a Synod or Assembly of the Senators of the English Nation, over which did preside Pleimund Arch-Bishop of Canterbury interpreting expresly the words of the Apostolical Embassy.’ These Assemblies were termed by the Saxons, [...], i. e. Meetings of the Wise Men, and [...], i. e. the Great Assemblies. At length we borrowed of the French the name of Parliaments, Polyd. hist. Angl. l. 11. which before the time of Henry the First, Polydore Virgil sayes, were very rarely held. An usage, that not without good reason seems to have come from the ancient Germans. So Tacitus sayes of them, ‘Concerning smaller matters the Princes only, concerning things of greater concern, they do all the whole body of them consult; yet in that manner, that those things also, which it was in the peoples power to determine,Mod. ten. Parl. were treated of by the Princes too.’ And I have one that hath left it in writing, ‘that when there was neither Bishop, nor Earl, nor Baron, yet then Kings held their Parliaments: and in King Arthur's Patent to the University of Cambridge (for ye have my leave, if you can find in your heart,Jo. Caius An­tiq. Canta­brig. l. 1. to give credit to it, as John Key does) ‘by the coun­sel and assent of all and singular the Prelats and Princes of this Realm, I decree.’

There were present at Parliaments, about the beginning of the Nor­mans times,V. 2 [...]. Ed. 3. fol. 18. as many as were invested with Thirteen Fees of Knights ser­vice, and a third part of one Fee, called Baron's, from their large Estates: for which reason perhaps John Cochleius of Mentz, in his Epistle Dedica­tory to our most Renowned Sir Thomas More, prefixt before the Chronicle of Aurelius Cassiodorus, calls him Baron of England. But Henry the Third, the number of them growing over big, ordered by Proclamation, that those only should come there, whom he should think sit to summon by Writ.

These Assemblies do now sit in great State, which with a wonderful harmony of the Three Estates, the King, the Lords and the Commons, or Deputies of the People, are joyned together, to a most firm se­curity of the publick, and are by a very Learned Man in allusion to that made word in Livy, Panaetolium from the Aetolians, most rightly called Pananglium, August. de clv. Dei, l. a. c. [...]1. that is, all England. ‘As in Musical Instruments and Pipes and in Singing it self, and in Voices (sayes Scipio in Tully's Books of the Common-wealth) there is a kind of harmony to be kept out of distinct sounds, which Learned and Skilful Ears cannot endure to hear changed and jarring; and that consort or harmony, from the tuning and orde­ring of Voices most unlike; yet is rendred agreeing and suitable: so of the highest and middlemost and lowermost States shuffled together, like different sounds, by fair proportion doth a City agree by the con­sent of persons most unlike; and that which by Musicians in singing is called Harmony: that in a City is Concord, the straightest and surest bond of safety in every Common-wealth, and such as can by no means be without Justice.’

But let this suffice for Law-makers.

The Guardians of the Laws, who. In the Saxons time seven Chief. One of the Kings among the Heptarchs styled Monarch of all En­gland. The Office of Lord High Constable. Of Lord Chancellor, ancient. The Lord Treasurer. Alderman of England, what. Why one called Healfkoning. Aldermen of Provinces and Graves, the same as Counts or Earls and Vis­counts or Sheriffs. Of the County Court, and the Court of Inquests, called Tourn le Viscount. When this Court kept, and the original of it.

I Do scarce meet before the Saxons times with any Guardians of the Laws different from these Law-makers. In their time they were vari­ously divided, whose neither Name nor Office are as yet grown out of use. The number is made up, to give you only the heads, by these; to wit, the King, the Lord HighConstable, the Chancellor, the Treasurer, the Alderman of England, the Aldermen of Provinces and the Graves. Those of later date and of meaner notice I pass by, meaning to speak but briefly of the rest.

The King was alwayes one amongst the Heptarchs or seven Rulers, who was accounted (I have Beda to vouch it) the Monarch of all En­gland. Ella King of the South-Saxons (so sayes Ethelwerd) was the first that was dignified with so high a Title and Empire,Ethelw [...]d. l. 3. c. 2. who was Owner of as large a Jurisdiction as Ecbright; the second was Ce [...]lin King of the West-Angles; the third Aethelbrith King of the Kentish-men; the fourth Redwald King of the Easterlings; the fifth Edwin King of Northumberland; the sixth Oswald; the seventh Osweo, Oswald's Bro­ther; after whom the eighth was Ecbright. His West-Saxon Kingdom took in the rest for the greatest part.

The Office of Lord High Constable, which disappeared in Edward Duke of Buckingham, who in Henry the Eighth's time lost his Head for High­Treason, was not seen till the latter end of the Saxons. Hist. Eliens. One Alfgar Staller is reported by Richard of Ely Monk, to have been Constable to Edward the Confessor, and Mr. Camden mentions a dwelling of his upon this account called Plaissy in the County of Middlesex. Camd. in Northampt. V. Kel. relat. 6 Hen. 8. fol. 171. Stat. 13 Rich. 2. c. 2 Matth. Paris, pag. 563. Brook tit. Prerogative. 31. He of Ely sets him out for a Great and Mighty Man in the Kingdom. And indeed formerly that Ma­gistrate had great power, which was formidable even to Kings them­selves.

They who deny there were any Chancellors before the coming in of the Normans, are hugely mistaken. Nor are they disproved only out of the Grant of Edward the Confessor to the Abbot of Westminster, which I am beholden to Mr. Lambard for, at the bottom of which these words are set down: I Syward Publick Notary, instead of Rembald the Kings Maje­sties Chancellor, have written and subscribed this paper; but also out of Ingulph, who makes mention of Turketulus, some while after that Abbot of Crowland, Chancellor of King Edred, ‘by whose Decree and Counsel [Page 96] were to be handled & treated whatsoever businesses they were, Tempo­ral or Spiritual, that did await the Judgement of the King; and being thus treated of by him,Fr. Thin. in contin. Chr. Eliz. might irrefragably stand good.’ And Francis Thinn, that Learned Antiquary has reckoned up several, who have discharged this Office; as Turketill to King Ethelbald, Swithin Bishop of Winche­ster to King Egbert, Vlfin to King Athelstan, Adulph to King Edgar, Alsy Abbot and Prelate of Ely to King Ethelred. Concerning which Office and the Seals, which the Chancellor in old time had the keeping of, I had rather you would consult with Camden's Tribunals or Seats of Justice, and those things which John Budden at Wainfleet Doctor of Laws has brought out of the Archives into his Palingenesia, than seek them at my hands.

As for Treasurers, Matth. Cant. in Odonis se­veri vita. Dunstan was so to King Edred, and Hugolin to the Confessor.

But that fifth title of Alderman of England, is an unusual one. Yet, if I don't mistake my self, he was the Chief President in Tryals at Law, and an Officer to keep all quiet at home; the same as now perhaps is commonly called the Lord Chief Justice of England. This remarkable name I do not meet with, neither in the Monkish Chronologers, which are to be had at the Shops,Camden. nor in the Records of our Laws. But a pri­vate History of the Abbey of Ramsey in Huntingdon-shire has given us no­tice of one Ailwins Tomb with this Inscription, ‘HIC. REQUIESCIT. AILWINUS. INCLITI. REGIS. EADGARI. COGNATUS. TOTIUS. AN­GLIAE. ALDERMANNUS. ET. HUJUS. SACRI. COENOBII. MIRACULOSUS. FUNDATOR.’ that is, Here resteth Ailwin Kinsman of the Renowned King Edgar, Al­derman of all England, and the miraculous Founder of this Sacred Monastery. And by reason of his great Authority and Favour which he had with the King, by a Nick name they called him Healfkoning, i. e. Half-King. Now H [...]nry of Huntingdon sayes,Huntingd. hist. l. 6. that Tostius Earl (or to use his phrase Consul) of Northumberland, and Harald Sons of Godwin Earl of Kent were Justices of the Realm.

Aldermen may aptly be termed by the word Senators. Those Judges did exercise a delegated power throughout the Provinces, called Counties or Shires, and the Graves and under-delegated power from them. The word is as much as Governours, and is the same thing, as in High Dutch Grave in Landgrave, Burgrave, Palsgrave, &c. and what amongst some of our own people Reev. We shall call them both, as that Age did, in a Latin term, the one Comites, i. e. Counts or Earls, the other Vicecomites, that is, Viscounts or Sheriffs.

The name of Count is every where met with amongst the most ancient of the Monks, which yet does very often pass into that of Duke in the subscription of Witnesses. And in the Charter of the Foundation of Chertsey Abby in Surrey, Camden. Frithwald stiles himself subregulus, i.e. an under Kingling or petty Vice-Roy to Wulpher King of the Mercians; make no question of it, he meant he was a Count.

A Viscount and a Vice-Lord are more than very like, they are the very same. Ingulph sayes it above. ‘And in the last hand-writing of King Edred we have, I Bingulph Vice-Lord advised it, I Alfer Viscount heard it.’

[Page 97] These Counts and Viscounts, or Earls and Sheriffs had in their Counties their several Courts both for private and for publick matters. For pri­vate affairs they had every Month a Meeting called the County Court. ‘Let every Grave, Leg. Edw. 5. & Canut. 17. as we have it in Edward the Elder's Laws, every fourth Week convene and meet the people in Assembly; let him do equal right to every one, and determine and put an end to all Suits and Quarrels,Leg. Edgat. cap. 11. when the appointed days shall come.’ For publick busi­ness King Edgar ordered the Court of Inquests or Inquiries, called Tourn le Uiscount. ‘Let a Convention or Meeting be held twice every year out of every County, at which let the Bishop of that Diocess, and the Senator, (i. e. the Alderman) be present; the one to teach the people the Laws of God; the other the Laws of the Land.’ What I have set down in William the First at the end of the fourth Chapter of this se­cond Book, you ought to consider of here again in this place.

The inhabitants did not meet at this Court of Inquests at any season promiscuously and indifferently, but as it is very well known by the use and ancient Constitutions of the Realm, within a Month either after Easter, or after Michaelmas. In which Court, seeing that not only the Count, as now a dayes the Viscount or Sheriff does, but also the Bishop did preside; it does not at all seem difficult to trace the very ori­ginal of this temporary Law.Synod. Anti­och. c. 20. That peradventure was the Synod of Antioch held in Pope Julius the First's time, and acknowledged in the sixth General Council held at Constantinople. Dist 18. c. 4. In this latter there are expresly and plainly two Councils or Meetings of the Bishops to be kept every year within three Weeks after Easter, and about the middle of October, (if there be any small difference in the time, it can be no great matter of mistake). You may help your self to more other things of meaner note out of what has been said before about Hundreds, Bourghs and the like.

And this may serve in brief for the Saxons, who were entrusted with the care of their Laws.

Of the Norman Earls. Their Fee. Their power of making Laws. Of the Barons, i.e. Lords of Manours. Of the Court-Baron. Its rise. An instance of it out of Hoveden. Other Offices much alike with the Saxons.

I Shall be briefer concerning the Normans, I mean their Earls and Barons.

Their Counts or Earls before the Conquest, except those of Leicester, and perchance some others, were but Officers, and not as yet heredita­ry. When William bore the sway, they began to have a certain Fee and a descent of Patrimony; having together with their Title assigned to them a third part of the Revenues or Rents, which did arise out of the whole County to the Exchequer. This custom is clear enough in Gervase of Tilbury in the case of Richard de Red [...]eriis made Earl of Devonshire by Henry the First, & Jeoffrey de Magna Villa made Earl of Essex by Mawd the Empress. It seems that the Saxon Earls had the self-same right of sharing with the King. So in Doomsday Book we find it; ‘The Queen Edeua had two parts from Ipswich in Suffolk, and the Earl or Count Guert the third: and so of Norwich, that it paid Twenty Pound to the King, and to the Earl Ten Pound: so of the Revenues of the Borough of Lewes in Sussex, the King had two shares, and the Earl the third. And Oxford paid for Toll and Gable, and other customary Duties Twenty Pound a year to the King, besides Six Quarts of Honey, and to Earl Algar Ten Pound.’

To conclude, it appears also that these Norman Earls or Counts had some power of making Laws to the people of their Counties. For in­stance, the Monk of Malmesbury tells us,Malmesb. de gest. reg. l. 3. ‘that the Laws of William Fitz-Osborn Earl of Hereford remained still in force in the said County, that no Souldier for whatsoever offence should pay above Seven Shillings.’ The Writings and Patents of the men of Cornwall concerning their Stan­naries or Tinn-Mines do prove as much; nor need I tell the story, how Godiva Lady to the Earl Leofrick rid on Horse-back through the Streets of Coventry with her hair disshevelled, all hanging about her at full length, that by this means she might discharge them of those Taxes and Pay­ments, which the Earl had imposed upon them.

Out of the Countreys (wherein all Estates were subject to Mi­litary Service) the Barons had their Territories, as we call them Mannors; and in them their Courts to call their Tenants together, at the end of every three Weeks, and to hear and determine their Causes. A Civilian,Ad leg. 2. de origin. jur. one Vdalricus Zazius, would have the original of these Courts among other Nations, to have come by way of imitation from Romulus his making of Lords or Patrons, and their Clanns or Tenants. The use of them at this day is common and ordinarily known. But to shew how it was of old, we will borrow out of Hoveden this spark of light.Roger de Ho­veden in H. 2. John Marshall complained to Henry the Second, that whereas he had claimed or challenged in the Arch-Bishops Court a piece of Land [Page 99] to be held from him by right of inheritance, and had a long time pleaded upon it, he could obtain no Justice in the case, and that he had by Oath falsified the Arch-Bishops Court, (that is, proved it to be false by Oath, according to the custom of the Realm: to whom the Arch-Bishop made answer, There has been no Justice wanting to John in my Court; but he, I know not by whose advice, or whether of his own head, brought in my Court a certain Toper, and swore upon it, that he went away from my Court for default of Justice; and it seemed to the Justices of my Court, that he did me the injury, by withdrawing in that manner from my Court; seeing it is ordained in your Realm, that he who would falsifie anothers Court must swear upon the holy Gospels. The King not regarding these words, swore, that he would have Ju­stice and Judgement of him; and the Barons of the Kings Court did judge him to be in the Kings Mercy; and moreover they fined him Five Hundred Pound.’

As to doing Justice in all other Cases, and managing of Publick Af­fairs, the Normans had almost the same Names and Titles of Officers and Offices as the Saxons had.


A Brief CHRONOLOGY TO Attend and Assist THE HISTORY.

In the Year of the WORLD. 
1910.Samothes, if there ever were such a man, bears rule.
2805.Brutus makes a descent, (that is, lands with his Trojans) in Cornwall or Devonshire.
3516.Dunvallo Molmutius swayes the Scepter.
3627.Martia, Dowager of King Quintilen, is Queen Regent during the Minority of her Son Sisillius the First.
3942.Caius Julius Caesar arrives at Deal on the Sea-Coast of Kent, and ‘Territa quaesitis ostendit terga Britannis,lucan. that is,
Having inquiry made,
After the Britans bold,
He turn'd his back, 'tis said,
His courage would not hold:
and was the first that discover'd Britanny to the Romans.
In the Year of CHRIST. 
44.Claudius Caesar Emperour sends over Aulus Plau­tius with an Army as his Lieutenant General, and by degrees reduceth the Countrey into the form of a Roman Province.
52.A Colony of Veterans or old Roman Souldiers is sent down to Maldon in Essex.
86.Britanny is subdued or brought under the yoke by the Conduct of Junius Agricola, in the time of Domitian the Emperour.
183.Lucius or King Lucy was the first Christian King. Forasmuch as he was of the same standing with Pope Eleutherius and the Emperour Commodus. Whence it appears, that Beda makes others mi­stake, and is himself mistaken in his wrong ac­count of time in this affair.
428.The Saxons, Angles, Jutes, Danes, Frisons, or Friselanders arrive here from Germany, Taurus and Felix then Consuls, in the one and twentieth year of Theodosius the younger. The common or ordinary account of Writers sets it down the four hundred forty ninth year: but that great man both for Authority and Judgement William Cam­den Clarenceaux King at Arms hath, upon the cre­dit of ancient Records, closed this Epoch or Date of time within that term of years, which I have set in the Margin.
561.King Ethelbert the First King of the English Saxons, who profest Christianity.
800.King Egbert.
872.King Alured or Alfred.
959.King Edgar.
1017.Canute or King Knute the Dane.
1036.Harold, eldest Son to King Knute, called for his swiftness Harefoot.
1042.Edward the Confessor, after whom Harold Son to Godwin Earl of Kent usurp't the Throne, where he continued only nine Months.
1066.William Duke of Normandy, after a Battel fought upon the Plain near Hastings, got the Dominion or Soveraignty of the British Island.
1088.William Rufus, second Son of the Conquerour.
1100.Henry the First, younger Brothor to Rufus.
1135.King Stephen, Count of Blois in France, Nephew to Henry by his Sister Adela.
1153.Henry the Second, Grand-child to Henry the First by his Daughter Mawd the Empress, and Jeoffrey Count of Angers in France.

BRIEF NOTES UPON Some of the more Difficult Passages IN THE TITLE-PAGE.

COmmon and Statute Law] So I render Jus Prophanum, as Prophane is opposed to Sacred and Ecclesiastical, as him­self explains the term in his Preface out of Festus. Otherwise it might have been render'd Civil Law, as relating to Civil affairs and the Government of State, not medling with the Canons and Rules of the Church; but that the Civil Law with us is taken ge­nerally in another sense for the Imperial Law, which however practised in several other Nations, hath little to do in England, unless in some particular cases.

Of English Britanny] that is, that part of Britain, which was inhabi­ted by the Angles, in Latin called Anglo-Britannia, by us strictly England; as for distinction, the other part of the Island, Wales, whither the Welsh, the true and ancient Britans, were driven by the Saxons, is called Cambro-Britannia, that is, Welsh Britanny; and Scotland possest by the Scots, is in like manner called Scoto-Britannia, that is Scotch-Britanny, which now together with England, since the Union of the two King­doms, goes under the name of Great Britain.

In the Author's PREFACE.

The Guardian of my Threshold] So [...] among the Romans was the God of the Threshold, qui limentis, i. e. liminibus pr [...]est; but it may be taken for the Officer of the Gate, the Porter, who gives admission to strangers.

In a different Character] Accordingly in the Latin the Author's Cita­tions are printed in Italick; which, because they are so frequent, I thought fit rather to notifie by a distinction, as usual, in the Margin; thus,

Intercidona, Pilumnus & Deverra] These were Heathen Deities, to whom they attributed the Care of their Children, who else they thought Silvanus migh [...] ▪ like Oberon King of the Fairies, surprize or do some other mischief to.


CHAP. 1.

Pag. 2. lin. 23. Among the Celts and Gauls] Who are reckoned for one and the same people; as for instance, those Gauls, who removed into the Lesser Asia, mixing with the Greeks, were called Gallo-Graeci, but by the Greeks were styled [...], whence by contraction, I suppose [...].

L. 41. Bellagines, that is, By-Laws.] From By, that is, a Village, Town or City, and Lagen, which in Gothish is a Law; so that it sig­nifies such Laws, as Corporations are govern'd by. The Scots call them Burlaws, that is, Borough-Laws. So that Bellagines is put for Bil [...] ­gines or Burlagines. This kind of Laws obtains in Courts Leet and Courts Baron, and in other occasions, where the people of the place make their own Laws.


Pag. 4. l. 7. Adrastia, Rhamnusia & Nemesis.] Which is all but Ne­mesis the Goddess of Revenge, called Adrastria from King Adrastus, who first built her a Temple; and Rhamnusia from Rhamnus a Village in the Athenian Territory, where she was worshipped.

L. 42. Elohim, that is, Gods.] And so Judges are properly called ac­cording to the original notation of the word, whose Root [...] ala [...], though in Hebrew it signifie to curse, yet in the Arabick Language, a de­scendent of the Hebrew, it betokens to judge. Thus 'tis said in the Psalms, God standeth in the Congregation of the Gods, and I have said, Ye are Gods, &c.

L. 45. It subjoins to it the name of God.] To wit, that Name of his [...] El, which signifies a mighty God. In this sense the Cedars of God ar [...] lofty stately Cedars; and by Moses his being fair to God, is meant, that he was exceeding fair.

Pag. 5. lin. 18. Not only Berecynthia, but also Juno, cybele.] Why! Cybele is the very same Goddess, who was called Berecynthia from Bere­cynthus [Page 107] a Hill of Phrygia (as also Cybelus was another) where she was worshipped. And she had several such Names given her from the places of her worship, as Dindymene, Pessinuntia, Idaea, Phrygia. This then was a slip of our worthy Author's memory or his haste.


Pag. 5. lin. 34. Not by the number of dayes, but of nights.] Thus in our common reckoning we say a Sennight, that is, seven nights; septi­noctium, for what in Latin they say septimana, seven mornings; and a fortnight, that is, fourteen nights. Again for Sundayes and Holy-dayes, the Evening, which concludes the fore-going day, is said to be their Eve, that is, Evening. And the Grecians agree with us in setting the night before the day, in that they call the natural day, which is the space of twenty four hours, comprehending day and night, [...] Night-day, not Day-night.


Pag. 6. lin. 22. King phranicus.] It is so ordinary a matter for Histo­rians, when they treat of things at great distance of time, to devise Fables of their own, or take them up from others, that I doubt not but this Phranicus was designed to give name to France; whereas it was so cal­led from the Franks, who came to plant there out of Franconia a Coun­trey of Germany, called East-France.

L. 29. With Corinus one of the chief of his company.] From whom Cornwall had its name, formerly called in Latin Corinia or Cornavia (say some) now Cornubia. And possibly if that were so, Corinium also or Cirencester, a Town in Glocestershire, and Corinus too, the River Churne, that runs by it, own their appellations to the same Noble person.

L. 31. New Troy, that is, London.] Called also Troynovant, and the people about it called Trinobantes or Trinovantes, from whom also the City it self was styled Augusta Trinobantum, that is, the Royal Seat of the New Trojans.

L. 40. King Belin.] Who gave name to Billinsgate, that is, Be­lin's Gate, as King Lud to Ludgate.

Pag. 8. lin. 39. Eumerus Messenius.] Some such fabulous Writer as our Sir John Mandevil, who tells us of People and Countreys, that are no where to be found in the World.


Pag. 9. lin. 19. In the time of Brennus and Belinus.] The first of these was General of the Gauls, who were called Senones, and going into Italy with them, sackt Rome. There he built the City Verona, called by his Name Brennona; as he had done Brennoburgum now Bran­Denburg in Germany. From his prowess and famed Exploits, it is sup­posed that the Britans or Welsh do to this day call a King Brennin. Of the other, viz. Belinus, some mention hath been made already.


Pag. 10. lin. 24. Locrinus, Camber and Albanactus.] From the first of these three Brethren, to wit, Locrinus, it is said, that the Welsh call En­gland Lboegr, that falling to the eldest Sons share; from the second Camber, that a Welsh-man is named Cumra, and the Countrey Cam­bria; [Page 108] and from the third Albanactus, that Scotland, or at least good part of it retains the term of Albania, a title still belonging to the King of Britain's second Brother, the Duke of York. Though for my part for this last name of Albanactus I am somewhat of opinion, that it might be devised by some smattering Monk purposely in favour of the Trojan Sto­ry, as much as to say in a mungrel word Albae [...] King of Alba, a City of Italy built by one of Aeneas his Sons.

L. 29. Gavelkind.] From the Saxon gafel or gafol, a Debt or Tri­bute, and tyn or kynd, the Kindred or Children; or, as Mr. Lambard, gif eal tyn, i. e. given to all who are next of Kin; or, as Vorstegan, give all kind, i. e. give to each Child his part. An ancient custom of the Saxons, whereby the Fathers Estate was equally divided amongst his Sons; as it is still amongst the Daughters, if there be no Sons. It obtains still in several places, especially in Kent by the concessions of the Conqueror.

Pag. 11. lin. 22. The Laws of second Venus.] Not having Plato by me, nor any other means to inform my self better, I imagine that by the first Venus they mean the force of Lust and Beauty, which doth so naturally incline people to a desire of union and copulation; and by the second Venus consequently is intended that prudential reason, by which men according to wholsome and equal Laws easily suffer themselves to be gathered into Societies, and to comply with one another in mutual in­dearments.

P. 12. lin. 12. Jupiter's Register.] [...] in the Greek Proverb, is the skin of that Goat, which nursed him in his Childhood, of which after her Death in honour of her memory, and reward of her services, he made his Register, to enroll therein and set down upon record all the concerns of mankind.

Lin. 15. Of some Aethalides.] He was the Son of Mercury, and had the priviledge allowed him to be one while among the living, another while among the dead, and by that means knew all that was done among either of them. The Moral is plain, that he was a great Scholar, who what with his resin'd meditation and study of Books, which is being among the dead, and what by his conversation with men, had attained great knowledge and prudence: So that Pythagoras himself, as modest as he was to refuse the Title of Wise man, and to content himself with that of a Philosopher, that is, a Lover of Wisdom, yet was fond of the coun­terfeit reputation of being thought to be He, giving out according to his own Doctrine of Transmigration, that he was the man.


P. 14. lin. 6. What? that those very Letters, &c.] The Authors ex­pression here may seem somewhat obscure; Wheresore I think fit to set down this by way of explication. He sayes, that the Letters which the Greeks used in Caesar's time, and which we now use, are rather such as the Greeks borrowed from the Gauls than what they had originally of their own. This he proves in the end of this Paragraph by the judge­ment of several Learned Men. So then, if this were so, Caesar, who without all question was well enough acquainted with the Greek Let­ters then in use, yet in all likelihood did not so well know what the true odl Gallick Letters were, the people being strangers to the Romans, and he having but lately had any converse with them, and so might very probably mistake, in thinking that, because the Letters were the [Page 109] same, the Gauls might borrow the Greek Letters to make use of; whereas the contrary (to wit, that the Greeks, after the disuse of the Phoenician Letters, which Cadmus had brought over into Greece, took the Gallick in their stead) is averr'd by Lazins, Becanus, &c.


Pag. 15. lin. 12. From the sixth Moon.] Whether that were from the sixth Month they began their reckoning, which among the Romans, was August, therefore called formerly Sextilis, as the rest that follow according to order, are styled September, October, &c. or whether it were from the sixth day of the Moon's age, (as they apply by way of Proverb Quartâ Lunâ nati to the unfortunate, Hercules having been born on such a day of the Moon) is none of my business to determine, but to leave it to the Readers own inquiry and judgement.

Lin. 17. Nestor's triple age.] Which if it be reckoned according to this account of Thirty Years to an Age, makes but Ninety years in all. And though that also be a great Age for a man to handle Arms, and to attend the duty and service of War, yet that is not so ex­traordinary a case, but that others may be found in Story to stand in competition with him. Besides it falls short of that description, which Homer hath given of him, [...] Which implyes, that he had out-lived two Generations (to wit, the Fathers which had been bred up with him, and the Sons which had grown up into his acquaintance) and that now he reigned among the Grand-children, the Third generation, the two former having been swept off the Stage. And in this sense the Latins took it, as appears by Horace, who sayes of him ter A [...]vo functus, that he had gone through the course of nature, lived out the life of man, three times over; and in that he is styled by another old Poet triseclisenex, that is, the Three hun­dred years old Gentleman; for as aevum in the one signifies the whole space of humane life, so seculum in the other is constantly taken for a Hundred years.

Pag. 16. lin. 2. Greece, all over Italy.] For all the lower part of Italy was at that time inhabited by the Greeks, and from them called Magna Graecia, or Graecia Major, in opposition, I suppose, only to Sicily the neighbouring Isle, as being alike inhabited by Greeks, but of less extent.

Lin. 18. Voitland.] A Province of Germany, in the Upper Saxony.

Lin. 21. Having their heads uncovered.] That as they were bare­footed, so they were bare-headed also, perfect Gymnosophists. The Latin is nudis pedibus, capita intecta, Graecanico pallio & c [...]cullato, perulàque, and may be rendred indeed, having their heads covered or muffled. But how? With a Pall hooded and a Satchell. I, but what had the Satchell to do with their heads, that hung at their side, and so they are pictu­red. But to pass this, Reader, thou art at thy own choice, to take which interpretation of the two thou wilt; for the Latin word intectae, as I said, admits of either.


Pag. 18. lin. 10. The Women carried it for Minerva against Neptune.] There is another account given of this Story, that these two Gods be­ing in a contest, which of them should be intitled to the Presidence of this City Athens, they did each of them, to oblige the Community in [Page 110] their favour, by a Miracle cause to rise out of the ground, the one (Neptune) an Horse, to denote Prowess and warlike Courage, the other (Minerva) an Olive-tree loaden with fruit, an Emblem of Peace and Fruitfulness; and that the Citizens preferr'd the latter, as the greater merit and more welcome blessing.

Lin. 26. Juno, Salacia, Proserpina.] Juno was Jove the Thunderer's Consort, as Proserpine was the forc'd Mate of grim Pluto; the infernal Queen. The third, Salacia, Lady of the Sea, was Wife to Neptuneas, S. Austin hath it out of some of the old Roman Writers: though among the Poets she generally pass by the name of Amphitrite.

Pag. 19. lin. 25. Amalasincta, Artemisia, Nicaula, &c.] These brave Ladies or She Heroes are famous upon record, and need not any thing further for their commendation, but their Name. This Artemisia men­tioned here, was not the Wife of Mausolus, a vertuous and magnificent Woman too, but another who lived in Xerxes's time, a great Com­mandress, in alliance with him. Nicaula, it seems, though whence he learn't her Name, I cannot tell, for Scripture gives it us not; was she, who is there called the Queen of the South, a great admirer of Solomon's Wisdom.


Pag. 25, 26. The Inscriptions, which are left un-englished, are only brought in, to evidence, that there were several Roman Colonies, beside that at Maldon, called Colonia Victricensis, planted up and down in Britain; to wit, at York, at Chester, at Glocester, and I doubt not but at Colchester too, no less than there was one at Cullen in Germany, as the very name of them both imports, Colonia. And that ours hath an ad­dition of Chester to it, is usual to some other Cities: Colchester for Colnchester, which in Latin would be Colonia Gastri, or rather Coloniae Castrum, the Castle or Garrison of the Colony.


Pag. 28. lin. 11. Now you for your part are Gods Vicegerent in the Kingdom.] They are the words of Pope Eleutherius in his Letter to Lucy, the first Christian King, which was in the year of our Lord 183. From whence we may fairly conclude, that in those early dayes, the Pope of Rome according to his own acknowledgement had no such pretensions as now for several Ages since they have made, upon the Rights of Princes, to the great disturbance of the World, and reproach of Christian Religion. And indeed this is the more considerable, in that such was the simplicity of devotion in those early Converts, and such the deference, which Princes who embraced the Christian Faith, especially from the Missionaries of Rome, had for that Holy See, as ap­pears by this one single instance; that it had been no hard matter, nor could be judged an unreasonable thing, for them to lay claim to a right, and assert a power, which was so voluntarily offered. Further I add, that seeing the Donation of Constantine, besides that it was alwayes look't upon as a piece of forgery, was at best, supposing it true, but an Impe­rial Grant and Concession, which would not be of authority enough to bear up the Popes Supremacy in all other Kingdoms of the earth; and seeing Pope Boniface, who was the first that with bare face own'd it, his complyance with Phocas was so grosly wicked, that none of their own Writers but are ashamed to make that transaction betwixt those [Page 111] two, an argument for the Papal pretence: Seeing, I say, it is so, if the Pope be intitled, as their Canonists pretend, to an Universal Dominion by vertue of his Office, and by Commission from Christ and his chief Apostle S. Peter, how came it to pass, that the Bishops of Rome all along till Boniface, were so modest, as not to challenge any such rights or powers; nay, upon occasion to declare against such pre­tences, as Antichristian; which, if that be true, that the Pope is by his Of­fice, and by a Divine Commission instated into a Supremacy, was in ef­fect no less, than to betray the cause of Christ and his Church: how came it to pass, that Eleutherius should neglect such a seasonable and exem­plary opportunity of maintaining and exercising his right, and should rather chuse to return it in a complement back to the King his Con­vert? VICARIVS verò DEI estis in Regno, sayes he, You are GOD's VICAR in your Kingdom: which Title now the Pope doth with as much arrogance challenge to himself, as here one of his Pre­decessors doth with modesty ascribe to the King.

Lin. 32. With the title of Spectabilis.] Towards the declension of the Roman Empire, it was usual so to distinguish great Offices with pe­culiar Titles, as Spectabilis, Clarissimus, &c. so among the Italians, Mag­nifico to a Senator of Venice, Illustrissimo to any Gentleman, Eminenti [...] ­mo to a Cardinal: So with us the term of Highness is given to a Prince of the Blood, Excellence to a Vice-Roy or a Lord Lieutenant and to a General of an Army, Grace to an Arch-bishop and to a Duke, Honour to a Lord, Worship to an Esquire, &c.


P. 29. lin. 43. Fabius Quaestor Aethe [...]verd.] Why he calls him Fa­bius Quaestor, is at present past my understanding. Did he take upon him a Roman name? Was he in any such Office as Quaestor, i. e. Trea­surer or Receiver General, wherein he behaved himself like a Fabius? or did he intitle his Book by that name? I am to seek.


Pag. 31. lin. 19. Whatsoever there was in Pandora of Good and Fair.] She was a Woman made by Jupiter's own order, and designed to be the pattern of female perfection: to which end all the Gods contributed to the making of her several gifts, one Wisdom, another Beauty, a third Eloquence, a fourth Musick, &c.


P. 32. lin. 27. Wapentakes.] Which in some of our Northern Countreys is the same as we call other-where a Hundred, from the S [...]xon word waepen, i. e. arms, and tac, i. e. touch; as one should say, a touching or shaking of their Arms. For, as we read it in King Edward's Laws, when any one came to take upon him the Government of a Wapentake, upon a day appointed all that owed suit and service to that Hundred, came to meet their new Governour at the usual place of their Rendezvouz. He upon his arrival, lighting off his Horse, set up his Lance an end (a Custom used also among the Romans by the Prator at the meetings of the Centumviri) and according to custom took fealty of them. The Ceremony of which was, that all who were present, touch't the Governours Lance with their Lances, in token of a confir­mation: whereupon that whole meeting was called a Wapentake, [Page 112] inasmuch as by the mutual touch of one anothers Arms, they had en­tred into a confederacy and agreement to stand by one another. This fashion, they say, the Saxons took up from the Macedonians their Pro­genitors. Others will have it from tac to take, and give this account of it, that the Lord of the Hundred at his first entrance upon the place was used to take the Tenants Arms, surrendred and delivered up to him by themselves, in token of subjection by way of Homage. Sir Tho­mas Smith differs from both these; for he sayes, that at the Hundred meeting, there was a Muster taken of their Weapons or Arms; and that those who could not find sufficient Pledges for their good abear­ing, had their Weapons taken away; so that in his sense a Wapentake is properly Armilustrium, and so called from taking away their Wea­pons or Arms, who were found unfit to be trusted with them.

L. 40. For the Ceremony of the Gown.] He alludes to the Roman Custom, with whom the youth, when they arrived at mans estate, were then allowed to wear togam virilem, to put on a Gown, the habit of men; whereas before that, they were obliged to wear a Coat peculiar to the age of Childhood, called Praetexta: whence Papyrius, though yet a Child, being admitted into the Senate house for his extraordinary se­crecy and manly constancy, was called Papyrius Praetextatus.

Pag. 33. lin. 9. Morgangheb.] Or Morgingah, from Morgin, which in High Dutch signifies the Morning, and gab, a gift; to wit, that Pre­sent, which a man makes to his Wife, that morning he marries her.


Pag. 34. lin. 3. Tityus his Liver.] A Gyant, who for ravishing of Latona was adjudged to have his Liver after death prey'd upon conti­nually by a Vulture, which grew up again as fast as it was wasted. The equity of which punishment lay in this, that the Liver is reputed the source and seat of all lusts and unlawful desires, and doth naturally, as some Physicians hold, receive the first taint of Venereal distempers (the rewards of impure mixtures) according to that of Solomon, speak­ing of an Adulterer, Till a dart strike thorough his Liver; from whence they gather, that that, which we now call the French Pox, was not un­know even in that age of the World.

L. 26. Prema and Mutinus.] This latter a Title given to Priapus, much-what such a God, as Baal Peor was; the other a Goddess forsooth much to the same purpose. For the old Romans had Gods and Goddesses, as the present Romans have Saints, for every thing, for every action of life. But their Offices were such, as the modest Reader will easily excuse the want of explaining them.

Lin. 38. Sayes Progne to her Sister Philomel.] Tereus King of Thrace having married Progne Daughter of Pandion King of Athens, when he went to fetch her Sister Philomel, ravished her by the way on Ship­board; which occasioned a bloody revenge in the murder of his Son Itys. At last they were turned all four into so many several sorts of Birds; Progne into a Swallow, Philomel into a Nightingale, Tereus into a Lapwing, and Itys into a Pheasant.


Pag. 36. lin. 20. With head-money called Wergild.] A word com­pounded of the Saxon wert, the price or value or worth of a man, and geld or gild, a payment. That is, he that had killed another, was to [Page 113] buy off his life, by paying the full value of the person slain. The prizes or rates are set down in Ethelstan's Laws, by Thrimsa's, a kind of Coyn, or piece of money, of the value of three shillings, saith Mr. Lam­bard; which being reduced to our Sterling stand thus.

A Peasant,40 l. 1 s.
A Thane, or one in Orders,300 l.
A General, or Chieftain,600 l.
A Bishop, or Alderman,1200 l.
An Arch Bishop, or Peer,2250 l.
And a King,4500 l.

Half of which last summ was to go to the Kindred, and the other half to the publick. And these Rates are set, he sayes, by the Common Law of the English. The reason of this pecuniary compensation, was their tenderness of life, that two men might not dye upon the account of the same mischance, according to that saying in an ancient Law, Nulla sit culpa tam gravis, ut vita non concedatur, propter timorem Dei. But yet withal in some cases of premeditated or clandestine murder, they were not excused from making satisfaction with their life; or in case one were not able to pay the were, or Fine, he was punished with death. I called this Head-money, because in Latine it is termed capitis aestimatio, the value or price of a mans head: not in that sense as either Chevage or Poll-money is so called.


Pag. 37. lin. 42. In the Margin Caxton is quoted, a Book, it seems, rare; of which he saith, That Book, that goes up and down by this name, Mr. Warin Townsend of Lincolns-Inn, a Gentleman Noble by his Descent and Learning both, very friendly lent me for my use in a very fair Manuscript; which courtesie of his, I cannot but think it a foul shame for me, not to own and acknowledge with all thankfulness.

Pag. 38. lin. 17, 18. Even now in the time of those that are called the Good. 'Tis William of Malmesbury, whom he quotes; etiam nunc tem­pore Bonorum. Whether he mean Good Princes, who would have those Laws observed, or Honest Subjects, who would observe them, or whe­ther there were any sort of men in his time that went by that Chara­cter of Boni, good men, is more than I have to say. There was at one time a sort of Religious persons, that went by the name of Bon Hommes; but that can have nothing to do in this business.


Pag. 39. lin. 14. Every Native home-born lawful man.] In the Latin it is Indigena legalis, in the Saxon Law-term it is Inlaughe or Inlaugh, that is, one that is under the Law, Inlagatus, who is in Frank pledge, or belongs to some Court Leet: as all Males from twelve years old and upwards were obliged to be. So Bracton tells us.

Lin. 27. Decenna.] The same as Decuria, which is generally rendred a Tithing, i. e. a Company of ten men with their families, all of them bound to the King to answer for one anothers good and peaceable be­haviour. From the Latin word it is called a Dozein, and the people that belong to it are called Deciners or Dozeniers, that is, Decennarii. The chief of them is termed Decurio or Decanus Friburgi, the Tithing­man [Page 114] or Headborough. And all Males of twelve years age and upwards (except Nobles and Religious persons) were obliged to be of some Dozein or other. But now there are no other Dozeins but Leets, and no other security there given for the Kings Peace, but the persons own Oath.

Lin. 29. Friborgh.] From the Saxon sreo, free, and borgh, a surety or security: or, as some write it, Fridburgh, from frid, peace, and burgh, a surety. If it be taken for the person, it is the same that a Deciner (we now spoke of;) if for the action, it is their being sure­ties for one another: if for the company of these mutual ingagers, 'tis the same as Decuria, a Tything, in Saxon tienmannatale, i. e. the num­ber of ten men. The Normans retained the same custom, but alte­red the name, calling it Frankpledg, from the French, Frank, i. e. free, and pledg, i. e. surety. And the compass or circuit of this Frankpledg the same as that of Friburg, to wit, the Decenna or Dozein, i. e. ten housholds.

Lin. 40. Manupastus.] Of this Bracton sets down a Rule for Law, that every person, whether free-man or servant, either is or ought to be in frank-pledge or of some bodies mainpast. Now he is of ones Mainpast, saith he, who is allowed Victuals and Clothes, or Victuals only and Wages. And this was the reason, why great men were not obliged to be of any ordinary Dozein, because Bishops, Earls and Ba­rons, as the same Bracton informs us, ought to have their menial ser­vants in their own Friborgh, and to answer to the King for their behavi­our, and to pay what forseits they should make, if they had not the per­sons themselves forth-coming. And this, sayes he, is the case of all those who are of any ones Mainpast.


P. 41. lin. 16. John Scot Erigena.] A School-man famous for his subtilty, called in Latin, Johannes Duns Scotus. Whether Duns were the Name of his Family, as it might be, Johannes de Dunis, which in English would be John Downs; or whether it were a Nickname given him for his slovenliness and seeming blockishness, from the word Dunce, which in Barbarous Latin is Dunsa, (For so in Camden's Remains we find the Emperour Charles, as I take it, putting that question to him, as he sate at Table over against him, Quid interest inter Scotum & So­tum, What difference between a Scot and a Sot? to which he as freely replyed, Mensa, the Table, Sir) I shall not determine. But Scotus or Scot, is the name of his Countrey, he being a Scotch-man, and for that reason called also Erigena, that is, Irish born, to wit, a Highlander; for those people were originally Irish, and came out of that Island over into the North parts of Scotland. Now Ireland is by several Authors Greek and Latin called Ierna, and by the Inhabitants themselves Erin.

L. 43. The Goddess Anna Perenna.] The Lady President of the year, Anna ab Anno; to whom they addrest their devotions, that she would pe­r [...]nnare, that is, preserve and continue health and plenty and prosperity from year to year; for which reason she was called Anna Perenna. Now our Author here brings in long-lived Nestor and this Goddess, to shew that those good fellows in quaffing of healths, do wish muchos annos, as the Spaniard saith, many and many a years life to their absent friends, while in the mean time by tossing off so many bowsing Canns, they shorten their own lives.

[Page 115] Pag. 42. lin. 24. Englescyre.] Or Englecerie, that is, the being an English-man. For there was a Law made by King Knute in favour of his Danes (and so afterward it was interpreted in behalf of the Fran­cigenae, French-men, or whatever foreigners) that if any such were pri­vily murdered or slain, the Village, where the fact was done, should be amerced in a lusty fine to the King, unless they could prove Engle­cerie, that is, that the murdered person was an English-man, one born of English Parents, in which case there was no fine levied. So that the Danes and French, when they governed here, provided they might se­cure themselves from the English, were well enough content to let them destroy one another.


Pag. 44. lin. 11. An Olympiad.] An account of time used by the Greeks, consisting of four years, so called from the Olympick Games, which were celebrated in honour of Jupiter Olympius every fifth year. This reckoning began first in the year of the World three thousand one hundred seventy four.



PAg. 48. l. 5. By right of Fréehold.] Allodii jure, that is, by a mans own right, without acknowledgment of service or fealty, or payment of Rent to any other as a Superiour Lord. In which respect it is op­posed to an Estate in Fée, wherein though a man hath a perpetual right to him and to his heirs for ever, yet seeing he owes a duty and service for it, it cannot be said properly and simply to be his own. And such are all mens Estates here in England, but the Kings in the right of his Crown, who cannot be supposed to hold of another, or to owe fealty to any Superiour, but to God only.

Lin. 12. Vnder Military service.] Or Knights service, that is, to find the King such a number of Men and Arms in time of War, as it is here expressed. See Cowell in the word Chivalry. Indeed the Clergy before the Conquerour in the time of the Saxons (as we find it in the five and twentieth Chapter of the first Book) were allowed to be free from Secular Services, but with an Exception and Reserve however of these things, to wit, Expedition, Repairing of Castles and Building of Bridges, from which last duty the High-Priests among the Romans were called Pontifices, i. e. Bridge-makers. Now this bringing of the Bishops Baronies under Knights Service, was sure enough design'd to engage them into a close dependence upon the Crown, and to take them off from hankering after any forreign Power, to which they might pretend to owe any subordination; as all along the times of Popery, out of reverence to the Holy See, they were forward enough upon oc­casion to think themselves obliged to do, even to the high discontent and great disservice of their Kings.


Pag. 51. lin. 12. Ready money.] So I render Viva pecunia: which though Spelman saith it is so called, that it may the more expresly sig­nifie pecudes, i. e. Cattle; yet he doth not to me, I confess, make out by any fair instance that it doth ever so signifie; and that it cannot be taken in that sense here, is plain from what immediately goes before, quot ani­malia, imò quantum vivae pecuniae quisque possidebat: where animalia li­ving creatures include pecudes the Cattle.


Pag. 54. lin. 32. Boseham.] What Earl Godwin's trick was, or wherein the conceit lay, I cannot at present well imagine, unless it were in the equivocation or misunderstanding of the word Boseham, as it falls in with the word Bosom in the pronunciation and sound of it; thus. Supposing the Earl at meeting of the Arch-Bishop, coming up to him upon pretence of saluting him said, Give me your Boseham, my Lord; to which the Arch-Bishop thinking belike, he might, by way of desiring his Pastoral embrace, mean only his bosom, readily made answer, I give you my bosom; which the Earl with a cunning fetch in­terpreted a Grant of his Estate of Boseham.

Pardon, Reader, my mistake, if it be one; since I have no better ac­count, from my own guess, to give, meeting with no help from our Law-Dictionaries.


P. 56. lin. 8. The first Sheriffs of Counties.] A Sheriff or Shyre­reev signifies the Governour of a County, called in Latin Vice-comes, as Deputy to the Count or Lord or Chief Man of the County; though even in the Confessor's time he was reckoned the Kings Officer, and not the Counts. This Office, as Mr. Camden tells us, was first set up by King Alfred, who also divided England into Counties, and those Coun­ties again into Hundreds and Tythings.

Lin. 29. Other Judges without appeal.] This should seem to be the Court of Chancery: for which reason the Lord Chancellor is said to keep the Kings conscience, as here these Judges are compared to the Kings bosom.

Lin. 37. Acting a Busiris his part.] i. e. Treating strangers ill; he being a cruel Tyrant of Egypt, who slew strangers, and sacrificed them to his Gods: whence the Proverb, Busiridis arae.

Pag. 57. lin. 39. that he should pay it at the Scale.] That is, should pay it by weight, or according to full weight.


Pag. 60. lin. 17. Being Lord Chief Justice of the whole Kingdom.] In the Latin it is thus expressed; totius regni placitator & exactor: where I confess the former title of the two gave me the occasion of my mistake, as if he had been Chief Justice of the Common Pleas: whereas I should rather have rendred it thus; who had been (to wit, in King Rufus his time) Pleader or Demander and Receiver of the Kings duties throughout the whole Kingdom. For such an Officer this Exactor regius was, other­wise called Grafio. See Spelman upon both those words.

Lin 39. In the times of the Saxons a Hereot.] This at first was atri­bute given to the Lord for his better preparation towards War; but afterward though the name were kept, the thing was altered, being taken for the best Chattle, that the Tenant hath at the hour of his death, due to the Lord by custom, be it Horse, Ox, &c. That Hereot and Re­lief do not signifie the same thing, appears by this, that they are both often found to be paid out of one and the same Tenure, and again that the [Page 118] heir alway succeeds into the Estate upon the payment of the Relief, but not alwayes upon the payment of the Hereot.

Lin. 42. In French is called a Relief.] From the Verb Relever, to raise again and take up the Estate which had faln into the Lords hand by the death of the Ancestor. It is a summ of money, which the new Homager, when he is come to age, payes to the Lord for his admission or at his entrance into the estate. Whence by the old Civilians 'tis cal­led Introitus, and in Greek [...]. This summ was moderately set; wherein it differed from Ransom, which was much more severe. The Kings rates upon his Homagers were thus: An Earls heir was to give an hundred Pounds, a Barons an hundred Marks, a Knights an hundred Shillings at most; and those of lesser estate less, according to the anci­ent custom of their Tenures: as Spelman quotes it out of the Charter of Henry the Third.

Pag. 61. lin. 11. Of the greater Uavasors.] They were a sort of Gentlemen next in degree to the Barons. They did not hold immedi­ately of the King, but of some Duke, Marquess or Earl. And those that held from them again, were called Valvasini, or the lesser Vavasors. There is little certainty what their Offices or Priviledges were, or in­deed whence they were so called; whether qu. ad valvas stantes, or valvae assidentes, for their sitting or standing at their Lords door, (if those of that quality did so) as some would have it; or that they kept the doors or entrances of the Kingdom against the enemies, as Spelman sayes; or whether from Vassalli, as the Feudists derive the name, from that inferiour Tenure they had mediately from the King by his great Lords; which seems the more likely, because these greater Vavasors, who did so hold, are sometimes termed Valvasores regii and Vassi domi­nici, that is, the Kings Vassals.

Lin. 27. Her Dowry and right of Marriage.] In the Latin it is dotem suam & maritagium. Now Dos is otherwise taken in the English, than in the Roman Laws; not for that which the man receives with his Wife at marriage, a Portion: but for that which the Woman hath left her by her Husband at his death, a Dowry. And Maritagium is that which is given to a Man with his Wife, so that 'tis the same as Dos among the Romans, saith Spelman. But that is too general, I think, that the man should be obliged to return at his death all to his Wife that he had with her, beside leaving her a Dowry. I am therefore rather inclined to Cowell, who tells us, Maritagium signifies Land bestowed in marriage; which, it seems, by this Law was to return to the Wife, if her Husband dyed before her. The word hath another sense also, which doth not be­long to this place, being sometime taken for that which Wards were to pay to the Lord for his leave and consent that they might marry themselves, which if they did against his consent, it was called For­feiture of marriage.

Lin. 35. The common Duty of Money or Coinage.] So I render the word Monetagium. For it appears, that in ancient times the Kings of England had Mints in most of the Countreys and Cities of this Realm. See Cowell in the word Moniers. For which priviledge, 'tis likely, they paid some duty to the chief place of the Mint. Thus in Doomesday we read, as Spelman quotes it, that in the City Winecestre every Monyer paid twenty shillings to London; and the reason given, pro cuneis mo­netae accipiendis, for having Stamps or Coins of Money. For from this Latin word Cuneus (which our Lawyers have turned into Cuna, from [Page 119] whence the Verb Cunaere) comes our English word Coyn. Now it is more than probable, that the Officers of the Chief Mint might by their exactions upon the inferiour Mints give occasion for the making of this Law.

Lin. 42. Or Children or Parents.] By Parent here we are to under­stand not a Father or Mother, but a Cousin, one a-kin; as the word sig­nifies in French, and as it is used in our Laws. And indeed the Latin word it self began to have that sense put upon it in vulgar speech, to­ward the declension of the Empire, as Lampridius informs us.

Pag. 62. lin. 21. A pawn in the scarcity of his money.] That is, if he were not able to pay his forfeit in specie, i. e. to lay down the money, he was to give security by a pawn of some of his Goods or Chattels. See Cowell in the word Gage. This in Latin is called Vadium, a pawn or pledge, from Vas, vadis, a surety. Hence Invadiare, to pawn or in­gage a thing by way of security, till a debt be paid.

Lin. 23. Nor shall he made amends.] From the French amende, in our Law-Latin emenda: which differs from a Fine (or mulct) in this that the Fine was given to the Judge, but Amends was to be made to the Party aggriev'd. Now there were three sorts of this Amende, the Greater which was like a full Forfeiture, the Mid-one at reasonable terms, and the Least or Lowest which was like a gentle Amercement. This distinction will help to explain the meaning of this Law.

L. 30. Per sée de Hauberke.] This in Latin is called Feudum Hau­berticum, i. e. Loricatum, sayes Hotoman, from the French word Hau­bert, that is, a Coat of Mail, when a Vassal holds Land of the Lord on this condition, that when he is called, he be ready to attend his Lord with a Coat of Mail or compleat Armour on. Now Haubert, as Spel­man tells us, properly signifies a High Lord or Baron, from Haut or hault, high, and Ber (the same as Baro) a Man or Baron. And be­cause these great Lords were obliged by their place and service to wait upon the King in his Wars on Horse-back with compleat Armour, and particularly with a Coat of Mail on: hence it came, sayes he, that the Coat of Mail it self was also called Haubert; though he doth after­ward acknowledge that the word is extended to all other Vassals, who are under that kind of Tenure. But then at last he inclines to think, that the true ancient writing of the word is Hauberk (not Haubert) as it were Hautberg, i. e. the chief or principal piece of Armour; and Berg he will have to signifie Armour, as he makes out in some of its compounds, Bainberg Armour for the Legs and Halsberg Armour for the Neck and Breast: and derives it from the Saxon Beorgan, i. e. to arm, to defend. Add to this, saith he, that the French themselves (and we from them) call it an Haubergeon, as it were Haubergium.

Lin. 33. From all Gelds.] The Saxon word geld or gild signifies a Tribute or Tax, an Amercement, a payment of money, and money it self: whence I doubt not, but the best sort of money was called Gold. It is from the Verb geldan or gyldan, to pay. In Latin it is Geldum, and not Gilda, as Cowell writes it. For this signifies quite another thing, a Fraternity or Company of Merchants or the like. Whence a Gild­hall, that is the Hall of the Gild or Society: such as was once the Stilyard, called Gildhalla Tentonicorum, the Gild-hall for the Dutch Merchants from the Hanse-Towns.


Pag. 63. lin. 25. Iphis and Ianthis and Ceneus.] Persons mention'd by Ovid, who changed their Sex, from Female to Male. Iphis was a Maid of Creet, who after her Metamorphosis when she turn'd to Man, took Ianthe to Wife: and Canis (for that was her Maiden Name) was a Thessalian Girl, whom Neptune made a Whore of first, and then at her request a Man, who thenceforward went by the Name of Caeneus.

Lin. 34. Cheats, whom they commonly call Coyners.] In Malmesbury's Latin, Trapezitas, quos vulgò Monetarios vocant. Which bare citation is all the account, that Spelman gives of the word Monetarius. It doth properly signifie an Officer of the Mint, that makes and coyns the Kings money; a Monier. But here by the Historian's implying that such fellows, as this Law was made against, were falsarii, Cheats, and by our Author's terming of them adulteratores monetae, Counterfeiters of Coyn: we must understand them to be False Coyners, Clippers, Wash­ers, Imbasers of the Kings Coyn, and the like. And therefore I render'd trapezitas (which otherwise is a word of innocent meaning for Money-Changers, Bankers, &c.) in the Historian's sense Cheats.


Pag. 65. lin. 24. Every Hide of Land.] It is so called from the Saxon word hyden, to cover; so that thus it would be the same as Te­ctum in Latin, a Dwelling-house. And thus I question not, but there are several houses called The Hide: for I know one or two my self so called, that is, the Capital Messuage of the Estate. Nor is it so con­sined to this sense, but that it takes in all the Lands belonging to the Messuage or Manour-house, which the old Saxons called hidelandes, and upon some such account no doubt Hidepark had its name, as a Park belonging to some great House. Now as to the quantity, how much a Hide of land is, it is not well agreed. Some reckon it an hun­dred Acres, others thereabouts, by making it contain four Yardlands, every Yardland consisting of twenty four Acres. The general opinion is, that it was as much as could be ploughed with one Plow in a year, terra unius aratri culturae sufficiens. And thus it should be muchwhat the same as Carrucata terrae, i. e. a Plough-land. From Bede, who trans­lates it familia, they gather it was so much as could maintain a family. There is mention made of these Hides in the Laws of King Ina, an hun­dred years before King Alfred, who divided the Countrey into Counties or Shires. And Taxes and Assessments were wont to be made according to these Hides; up as high as King Ethelred's time in the year of our Lord 1008. Since the Conquest, William the First had six shillings for every Hide in England, Rufus four, Henry the First here three for the marriage of his daughter.

Pag. 66. lin. 8. This right is called Wreck.] i. e. by which the King claims shipwrack't goods cast on shoar. For though by the Law of Na­ture such things, as being nullius in bonis, having no Owner, every one that finds them may seem to have a right to them; yet by the Law of Nations they are adjudged to the Prince as a special priviledge by reason of his dignity. Now Wreck (or as the French call it Varec) properly signifies any thing that is cast on shoar, as Amber, precious [Page 121] Stones, Fishes, &c. as well as shipwrack't goods: from the Saxon wraet, i. e. any thing that is flung away and left forlorn; though use hath li­mited the word to the later sense.


Pag. 68. lin. 6. The Roman Laws were banisht the Realm.] I sup­pose there may be some word missing or mistaken in the Latin, à regno jussae sunt leges Romanae: But that which follows, the forbidding of the Books, obliged me to that interpretation: for why should the Books of those Laws be prohibited, if the Laws themselves were (as the Latin reading seems to import) ordered and ratified by the Realm. Where­fore I suppose some mistake, or omission, and for à regno jussae, read à regno pulsae or exulare jussae, &c. unless you would like to have it thus rendred, commanded out of the Kingdom: which I confess would be a very odd unusual construction.


Pag. 69. lin. 39. Three hundred Marks of Gold.] A Mark weigh'd eight ounces, and as Cowell states it out of Stow, it came to the value of 16 l. 13 s. 4 d. At this rate three hundred Marks of Gold come to five thousand Pound; and to every Bishop five Marks, supposing only ten Bishops, come to 833 l. 6 s. 8 d. which is a very unlikely summ in this business. 'Tis true, the value of it, as of other Coyns and summs, might vary. And so we find in Spelman, that an uncertain Author reckons a Mark of Gold to be worth fifty Marks of Silver. But then 'tis as uncertain, what Marks of Silver he means. For if they be such as ours are (and as they were in King John's time) at 13 s. 4 d. then a Mark of Gold will be of the value of 33 l. 6 s. 8 d. which is just dou­ble to the former value of 16 l. 13 s. 4 d. (which being resolved into Marks of Silver, makes but 25.) But in ancient times a Mark of Silver was only 2 s. 6 d. so that fifty of them will make but 6 l. 5 s. Another instance we meet with, where one Mark of Gold is accounted equivalent to ten Marks of Silver; which taking a Mark for 13 s. 4 d. comes to 6 l. 13 s. 4 d. Another, where nine Marks of Silver pass for one Mark of Gold, in a payment to the King: which is just six pound. And these three last accounts agree pretty well together. Taking the middlemost of the three, viz. a Mark of Gold at ten Marks of Silver; thus the above named summ of three hundred Marks of Gold, that is, three thousand Marks of Silver amounts to two thousand Pound; and the five Marks to every Bishop (supposing but ten Bishops) come to 333 l. 6 s. 8 d. But if we take these Marks of Silver at 2 s. 6 d. the account will grow much less. For ten such Marks are but 1 l. 5 s. so that the three hun­dred Marks of Gold at this rate will come but to 375 l. Sterling. But that these Marks of the ancient and lower estimate are not here intended, may probably enough be gathered from one passage more we find there, Centum solidi dentur vel marca auri, where, if solidi stand for shillings (for they may be taken for soulx as the French call them) a Mark of Gold is made of equal value with 5 l. Sterling. And thus three hun­dred Marks of Gold come to Fifteen hundred pound.

[Page 122] I confess after all, most of these accounts of the Mark, Gold or Sil­ver, may be admitted of, as having possibly at sometime or other been true; since mony, both in its Coyns and Summs, hath in several Ages of the World, risen, and fallen according to its plenty or scarcity.

Lin. 42. Being arighted and accused of any matter.] Or rather in the Law-spelling arrested; in Latin rectatus, that is, ad rectum vocatus, con­vened before a Magistrate and charged with a crime. Thus ad rectum habere, is in Bracton, to have a man forth coming, so as he may be char­ged and put upon his tryal. It may be also rendred, taken upon suspi­cion. It is written sometime retatus and irretitus.

Pag. 70. lin. 33. To give suretiship for the Remainder.] I confess I do not well know how to apply to this place that sense, which our Common Law takes the word Remainder in, for a power or hope to enjoy Lands, Tenements or Rents after anothers estate or term ex­pired; when an estate doth not revert to the Lord or Granter of it, but remains to be enjoyed by some third person. What if we say, that as Bishops could not (because their estates are of Alms) grant any part of their Demeans ad remanentiam, for ever or to perpetuity, so here Ex­communicate persons were not obliged dare vadium ad remanentiam, to find sureties for continuance or for perpetuity, that is, for their future good behaviour, but only to stand to the judgement of the Church in that particular case for which they were at present sentenced.


Pag. 72. lin. 24. If a Claim or Suit shall arise.] In the Latin, si ca­lumnia emerserit, a known and frequent word in our Law, which sig­nifies a Claim or Challenge, otherwise termed clameum.

Lin. 37. Till it shall by Plea be deraigned.] or dereyned: which is in French dereyné, in the Latin, disrationatum, which as it hath several significations in Law, so here it imports, after a full debate and fair hearing, the determination of the matter by the judgement of the Court.


Pag. 75. lin. 2. By the name of Yumen.] The same say some, as the Danes call yong men. Others derive the word from the Saxon geman, or the old Dutch Gemen, that is, common, and so it signifies a Commoner. Sir Tho. Smith calls him Yoman, whom our Laws term legalem hominem, a Free-man born (so Camden renders it by Ingenuus) who is able to spend of his own free Land in yearly Revenue to the summ of Forty Shillings, such as we now, I suppose, call Free-holders, who have a Voice at the Election of Parliament-men. But here the word is taken in a larger sense, so as to include servile Tenure also or Villenage.


Pag. 77. lin. 5. Leude-men.] From the Saxon Leod, the common people. It signified in Law a Subject, a Liege man, a Vassal, a Te­nant: hence in High-dutch a Servant was called Leute, in Old English a Lout. But in common acception Lewd was formerly taken for a [Page 123] Lay-man, [...], one of the people, or for any illiterate person. Now it is used to denote one who is wicked or loose and debauched.


Pag. 79. lin. 8. The States of the Kingdom, the Baronage.] He means the whole Parliament, and not only the House of Lords by the word Baronage. For though by Barons, now we properly understand the Peers of the Realm; yet anciently all Lords of Manours, those who kept Court-Baron, were styled Barons: Nay Spelman tells us, that all Free-holders went by that name before the Free-holds were quit let­ted out into such small pittances, as now they are, while Noble-men kept their Lands in their own hands, and managed them by their Vas­sals. Cowell gives this further account of those Lords of Manours, that he had heard by men very learned in our Antiquities, that near after the Conquest all such came to Parliament, and sate as Nobles in the Up­per House. But, as he goes on, when by experience it appeared, that the Parliament was too much pestered with such multitudes, it grew to a custom, that none should come but such as the King, for their extraordinary wisdom or quality, thought good to call by Writ, which Writ ran hâc vice tantùm, that is, only for this turn. So that then it depended wholly upon the Kings pleasure. And then he proceeds to shew, how after that they came to be made Barons by Letters Patents, and the Honour to descend to their posterity.

Lin. 27. By way of safe pledge.] That is, to oblige them to give security for the parties appearance against the day assigned; who in case of default were to undergo the dammage and peril of it.

Pag. 80. lin. 7. St. Peter's pence.] These Peter-pence were also cal­led in Saxon, Romescot and Romefeoh (that is, a Tribute or Fee due to Rome) and Rome-penny and Hearth-penny. It was paid yearly by every Family (a Penny a house) at the Feast of S. Peter ad Vincula on the first day of August. It was granted first, sayes our Author out of Malmesbury, by Ina or Inas King of the West-Saxons, when he went on Pilgrimage to Rome, in the year of our Lord 720. But there is a more clear account given by Spelman (in the word Romascot) that it was done by Offa King of the Mercians, out of an Author that wrote his Life. And it is this, That Offa after thirty six years Reign having vowed to build a Stately Monastery to the memory of St. Alban the British Pro­tomartyr, he went on Pilgrimage to Rome, Adrian the First then Pope, to beg Indulgences and more than ordinary Priviledges for the intended work. He was kindly received, and got what he came for; and the next day going to see an English School, that had been set up at Rome, he for the maintenance of the poor English in that School, gave a Pen­ny for every house, to be paid every year throughout his Dominion, (which was no less than three and twenty Shires at that time) only the Lands of S. Alban excepted. And this to be paid at the Feast of S. Pe­ter, because he found the body of the Martyr on that day, for which reason it was also called S. Peter's Penny. And although at last these Peter-pence were claim'd by the Pope as his own due and an Apostolical right, yet we find, that beside the maintenance of a School here men­tioned, for which they were first given, they have by other Kings been appropriated to other uses. Thus we read that Athelwolf Father to King Alured, who was the first Monarch of this Isle, granted three hundred [Page 124] Marks (the summ total of the Peter-pence here, bating only an odd Noble) to be paid yearly at Rome. One hundred for the honour of S. Peter, to find Lights for his Church: another hundred for the honour of S. Paul on the like occasion: and the third hundred for the Pope's use to enlarge his Alms. This was done in the year 858. when Leo the Fourth was Pope.

Lin. 9. Thirty pence of live money.] Possibly the worth or value of thirty pence in Goods and Chattels. King Offa, in his Grant thus words it, quibus sors tantum contulit extra domos in pascuis, ut triginta argenteo­rum pretium excederet; who had an Estate besides Houses in Lands, which might exceed the value of thirty silver pence.

Lin. 15. Out of a Rescript of Pope Gregory.] We have the whole Letter set down in Spelman, which speaks in English thus, GREGORY the Bishop, Servant of the Servants of God, to his Worshipful Brethren the Arch-Bishops of Canterbury and York, and to their Suffragans, and to his beloved Sons the Abbots, Priors, Arch-Deacons and their Officials, appointed throughout the Kingdom of England, unto whom these Letters shall come, Greeting and Apostolical Benediction. In what manner the Pence of S. Peter, which are due or owing to our Chamber, are to be gathered in England, and in what Bishopricks and Dioceses they are owing, that there may arise no doubt on this occasion, we have caused it to be set down in this present Writing, according as it is contained in the Register of the Apostolick See. Out of the Diocess of Canterbury seven pounds and eighteen shillings ster­ling: Out of the Diocess of London sixteen pounds, ten shillings. And so of the rest. Yeoven at the old City, April 22. in the second year of our Popedom. There is some difference though in the account of the Di­oceses. For after Lincoln he leaves out Coventry and puts Chichester for Chester, 8 l. and then after Bath he puts in Salisbury and Coventry (with a mistake 10 l. 10 s. for 5 s.) and leaves York last. Besides every body knows there are more Dioceses now than were then. This was Gre­gory the Fifth that wrote this, and it was (our Author tells us) in the time of King Edward the Second. But Edward the Third in the year of the Lord 1365. and of his Reign 39. forbad these Peter-pence to be paid any more at Rome, or to be gathered any longer in England.


Pag. 81. lin. 10. Into six Provinces or Circuits.] As they are for number still, with two Judges a piece, though at first three. How these differ from what they now are, as to the Counties, the Reader may easily satisfie himself. Here are thirty seven of them, as we now reckon: only with this difference, that Monmouth and Rutland are left out, and Richmond and Copland are put in.

Pag. 82. lin. 27. And if he perish, i. e. sink, let him lose one foot.] For that in this tryal by water, was the sign and proof of guilt, if the party thrown in did not swim, which is quite contrary in the tryal of Witches: as you will find in the next Chapter, which treats of Ordeals.

Lin. 39. The Kings great Assise.] Assise is a word, that hath many significations in our Law. It is here in the Title taken for a Statute; The Assises (i. e. the Statutes and Ordinances) of King Henry made at Clarendon. But in this place it is used for a Jury; and it is either the Great or Grand Assise, which serv'd for the right of Property, and was to [Page 125] consist of twelve Knights; or the Petty Assise, which served for the right of Possession only, and was made up of twelve lawful men.


Pag. 86. lin. 34. The superstitions and fopperies.] These you have also in Sir H. Spelman, with an Incipit Missa Judicii, which shews that the Church of Rome did once approve of these Customs, which since she hath condemned, notwithstanding her pretence of being Infallible. I would to God, she would deal as ingenuously in throwing off those other errors and corruptions, we do so justly charge her with.


Pag. 87. lin. 21. Hogenhine.] Or Agen-hyne, that is, ones own servant. It is written also Home-hyne, that is, a servant of the house.

Lin. 33. Holding in Frank Pledge.] The Latin is francus tenens. Wherefore amend the mistake, and read holding in Frank Fee. For Frank Pledg is a thing of another nature, as belonging to a mans Be­haviour and not to his Tenure. Now Frank Fee is that which is free from all service, when a man holds an Estate at the Common Law to himself and his heirs, and not by such service as is required in ancient demesne.

Pag. 88. lin. 12. The Falcidian Law.] So named from one Falci­dius, who being Tribune of the people in Augustus his time, was the Maker of this Law.

Lin. 33. Twenty pounds worth of Land in yearly revenue.] So I render 20. libratae terrae. For although Cowell in proportion to Quadrantata, or Fardingdeal of Land, which he saith is the fourth part of an Acre, seems at first to gather that Obolata then must be half an Acre, Denariata a whole Acre, and by consequence Solidata twelve Acres, and Librata twenty times twelve, that is, two hundred and forty Acres: Yet this was but a conceit of his own. For by having found the word used with reference to Rent as well as Land, thus 20. libratas terrae vel reditûs, he is forced to acknowledge, that it must signifie so much Land as may yield twenty shillings per annum. To which opinion Spel­man also gives his assent. But what quantity of Land this Librata terrae is, cannot so easily be determined. Cowell out of Skene tells us, it contains four Oxgangs, and every Oxgang thirteen Acres: if so, then it is fifty two Acres, and twenty of them, which make a Knights fee, come to one thousand and forty Acres, which somewhat exceeds the account here set down of six hundred and eighty out of the Red Book of the Exchequer. But there is a great deal of more difference still, as the account of the Knights fée is given by others. In one Ma­nuscript we read, that A Yardland contains twenty four Acres, four Yard­lands make one Hide, (that is, ninety six Acres), and five Hides make a Knights fee, (that is, four hundred and eighty Acres) the Relief whereof is a hundred Shillings. Another Manuscript hath it thus, Ten Acres according to ancient custom make one Fardel, and four Fardels (that is, forty Acres) make a Yardland, and four Yardlands (that is, one hun­dred and sixty Acres) make one Hide, and four Hides (that is, six hun­dred [Page 126] and forty Acres) make one Knights fee. A third reckons it otherwise, that sixteen Yard-lands make a whole Knights fee; which if we make a Yard-land to be twenty four Acres (according to the first account) comes to three hundred eighty four Acres; but if (according to the second) we take it for forty Acres, it amounts to six hundred and forty Acres. And, saith he, when they are taxed at six Shillings four Pence (that is, every of the sixteen Yard-lands, which make up the Fee, at so much) they make the summ of one hundred Shillings (or five Pound, which was the ancient Relief of a Knights fee.) But this is a mistake either of the Author or the Citation; it is six Shillings three Pence, which makes that just summ; from whence we learn also what proportion was ob­served by the Lord in setting and demanding of the Relief upon the next Heir after his Ancestor's decease. Further in the Kings Writ, as Glan­vil cites it, it is said, that twelve Plough-lands make one Knights fee: which, allowing to a Plough-land one hundred & twenty Acres, amounts to one thousand four hundred and forty Acres. In the main, as to the value of a Knights fee, 'tis enough what Cowell tells us, that it was so much inheritance, as was sufficient yearly to maintain a Knight with convenient Revenue, which in Henry the Thirds dayes, Camden sayes, was fifteen Pounds, and Sir Thomas Smith rates at forty. But to con­firm the account, which our Author here gives us, we find in the Sta­tute for Knights in the first of Edward the Second, that such as had twen­ty Pounds in Fee, or for term of life per annum, might be compelled to be Knights. And as to the various measure of Land (of which we have had a remarkable instance in this business before us) Spelman hath given us good reasons for it; since where the Land was good, they might probably reckon the fewer Acres to a Yard-land, a Hide, a Knights fee, &c. and where it was barren, they might allow the more. Beside, that some Lords, who lett these Fees, might be more bounti­ful and profuse, others more parsimonious and severe to their depen­dents; and that the services which were imposed upon these Fees, might in some Mannors according to custom be lighter, in others upon agreement and covenant more heavy. All which might strangely di­versifie the account, as to the quantity or measure of those Lands, which were to make up a Knights fee.


Pag. 91. lin. 4. A little Habergeon or Coat of Mail.] In Latin Halbergellum, a diminutive from the Saxon Halsberg, armour for the Neck and Breast. It is written also Haubergellum and Hambergellum. They mistake themselves, who translate it a Halbert, in French Hale­barde, anoffensive Weapon, for a Coat of Mail, which is armour of de­fence, in French Haubert or Hauberk; whence Fée de Hauberk, which we have already explained somewhere before.

Lin. 5. A Capelet of Iron.] A little Iron or Steel Cap instead of a Head-piece or Helmet, which the better sort wore. For by compa­ring this with the two fore-going Sections, we find they were to have a difference of Arms according to their different Quality and Estate.

Lin. 7. A Wambais.] Wambasium or Wambasia, so called, I sup­pose, because it reached over the belly or womb, was a Jacket or Coat [Page 127] of defence, used in stead of the Coat of Mail, perhaps like unto our Buff-coats, though probably not of Leather only, but of any other ma­terial, as the Wearer should think fit.

Pag. 92. lin. 6. Timber for the building of Ships.] In Latin here, Mairemia; written also Meremia and Meremium and Maremium and Muremium, from the French Meresme, Timber to build with.

Lin. 14. Stercutius.] Saturn so called, as being the first Inventer of dunging Land.

Lin. 28. Vnder the title of Free-men.] Here the Author himself hath in the Latin added a Marginal Note, which I thought fit to remove to this place. He saith, that among the ancient Germans the Alway free, the Middlemost free, and the Lowermost free were, as it were, the Classes and several Ranks of the lesser Nobles, i. e. of their Gentry. For the title of Nobless (as also in our Vulgar Language) was given only to Princes and Great Men. And for this he quotes Munster, Cosmog. lib. 3.


Pag. 93. l. 32. In the borders of the Carnutes.] A people of France, whose Countrey is called Chartrain, and their chief City Chartres, about eighteen Leagues from Paris Eastward. That Town eight Miles off, called Dreux (in Latin Drocum) was so named from the Druids, who dwelt there at first, and likely enough afterward often resorted thither.

P. 94. l. 37. Of the three Estates, the King, the Lords, and the Com­mons.] There are indeed three Orders or Estates acknowledged by true Divines and sound Lawyers in the English Government; to wit, the Lords Spiritual, the Lords Temporal, and the Commons of England. But the fundamental mistake of our Learned Author is, that he hath joyned those two sorts of Lords (whose very character shews them to be of a distinct species, though as to the publick Welfare and the Kings Service they ought to be of one and the same interest) into one Estate, and to make up the third Estate, thought himself obliged to bring in the King himself for one, who is Lord paramount over all the three; and by this means ipsam Majestatem in ordinem redigere. I call this a funda­mental mistake, as a most probable ground of Rebellion (as it was in the Barons Wars, and in our late Civil Broils) inasmuch as if the King make one of the three Estates, as they fancy he doth, and hath (as they do from thence conclude he hath no more) but a co-ordinate power with both or either of the other two Estates; that then it is lawful for both or either of those Estates, in case of publick grievances to quarrel the King (their co-ordinate) if he will not give way to their redress; that is, if he will not consent to do what they would have him to do; and upon his refusal of so doing, to raise War against him, to sequester and murder his Loyal adherents, to destroy his Royal Person; and finally, if he escape the hazards of Battel, when they get him into their hands, to bring him to account for a pretended male ad­ministration, and the violation of a trust, which God and not the People put into his hands; and having gone so far, that they may, if possible, secure themselves, to put the Monarch to death, and to extirpate Mo­narchy it self. This was the ground and method of our late Republican [Page 128] policy and practice. Wherein yet they did not foresee what examples they set against themselves, supposing this Doctrine of the three Estates in their sense to be true, and that King, Lords and Commons had an equality of trust and parity of power, that the same outrage, which the Rump-Commoners acted against the King, to the destroying of him, and against the Lords, to the outing of them, and voting them useless and dangerous (as to their share of Government) might one time or other be more plausibly promoted, and more effectually put in execu­tion by one or both of the other two Estates, with the help and assistance of great numbers of the Commoners (as there ever will be in such Na­tional divisions) against themselves and all men whatever of such per­nicious and destructive principles. No. This false Doctrine, I hope, will never obtain among us; and our English Government is so well con­stituted, that our Lords Spiritual and Temporal and our worthy Com­moners, will find it the interest of themselves and their posterities, that they will ever have that duty and deference to our Soveraign, as may secure Him and Us, and discourage the designs, and defeat the attempts of all such as wish ill to his honour and safety, or to the publick peace. Besides, is it rational to imagine, that the King, whose abso­lute right by Law it is, to convene the Estates, when and where he thinks fit, to call and dissolve Parliaments, as he pleases: in a word, that He, in whose Name all Justice is administred, in whose Hands the Militia is, and by whose Authority alone the Subjects can take up Arms, should stand only in a Co-ordination of power with any other persons whatsoever or however assembled or associated within his Do­minions? This flaw I could not but take notice of in our Great Author, and that only with an intention to undeceive the unwary Reader, and not to reflect upon his Memory, who though he kept along a great while with the Long Parliament, yet never appeared in action for them, that ever I heard, much less used or owned that virulence and violence, which many others of that ill Body of men judged necessary for their proceedings.


Pag. 96. lin. 15. Alderman of England.] The word Alderman, in Saxon, Ealdorman, hath various acceptions, so as to signifie all sorts almost of Governours and Magistrates. So Matth. 20. 25. the Princes of the Gentiles, in the Saxon translation are called Ealdormen; and Holofernes, I remember, the General of the Assyrian Army, is in an Old English Translation called the Alderman of the Army. So Aethelstan (whose younger Son this Ailwin was) being Duke or Captain Gene­ral of the East-Saxons is in this Book of Ramsey styled Alderman. The most proper importance of the word bears up with the Latin Senator, i. e. Parliament-man; as the Laws of S. Edward make out. ‘In like manner, say they, heretofore among the Britons, in the times of the Romans, in this Kingdom of Britanny they were called Senators, who afterwards in the times of the Saxons were called Aldermen; not so much in respect of their Age, as by reason of their Wisdom and Dignity, in that some of them were but young men, yet were skil­led in the Law, and beside that, were experienced persons.’ Now that Alderman of England, as Ailwin here was, had to do in affairs of [Page 129] Justice, appears by the foresaid Book of Ramsey, where it is said, that Ailwin the Alderman and Aedric the Kings Provost sate Judges in a cer­tain Court. The Alderman of the County our Author makes to be the same as the Earl or Lord of the County, and Spelman saith, it is hard to distinguish, but at length placeth him in the middle betwixt the Count and Viscount. He and the Bishop kept Court together, the one for Temporals, the other for Spirituals. The Title goes lower still, to de­note a Mayor or Bailiff of a Corporation, a Bailiff of a Hundred, &c.

Lin. 30. Healf-koning.] It was an oversight or slip of memory in our Author, to say, that Ailwin was so called; when the Book of Ramsey tells us, it was his Father Aethelstan, who was of that great power and diligence, that all the business of the Kingdom went through his hands, and was managed as he pleased, that had that Nick name given him therefore.

Lin. 36. The Graves.] Our Author makes them subordinate to the Aldermen of Counties: but in the Laws of the Confessor they appear to be muchwhat the same. There we read, ‘And as they are now called Greves, who are put in places of Rule over others, so they were anciently among the English called Ealdermen. Indeed, the word Greve or Reev (for it is all one) is of as various use, as that other of Alderman is. In Saxon it is gerefa, from gerefen and reafen, to take or carry away, to exact or gather. Whence this Officer (Graphio or Gravius from the Saxon) is in other Latin called Exactor regius; and by reason that the Sheriff gathered the Kings Fines and other Duties, and returned them to the Exchequer, he was called the Shire-greve or Shire-reev, that is, the Gatherer of the County. But the truth is, that Greve or Reev came at last in general to signifie any Ruler or Governour set over any place almost whatever; as the same word Grave doth among the Dutch. So a Shire-greve, or bihgerefa, the High Sheriff of a County; a Port-greve, the Governour of a City or Port. So the Lord Mayor of London was called formerly. Tun­greve, the Bailiff of a Town or Mannor. Sometime Greve is taken for a Count or Earl, as Alderman is.


Pag. 98. lin. 22. For Toll and Gabell.] In the Latin pro theolonio & gablo. Now telonium, from the Greek [...], properly signifies the place where the Officers of the Customs receive the Kings duties; but is used also for a duty paid for the maintenance of Bridges and River-Banks. So Hotoman. But in our Law it is taken for the Toll of a Mar­ket or Fair. And Gablum or Gabellum, a Gabell, from the Saxon gafol or gafel, signifies any Impost upon Goods; as that in France, upon Salt, &c. also Tribute, Custom, any kind of Tax or Payment, &c.

Lin. 32. Through the Streets of Coventry.] There is a famous Tra­dition among the people of that Town concerning this matter, that the Lady being to ride naked, only covered all over with her hair, had given order for the more decent performance of her Procession, that all the Inhabitants should that day keep their Shops and Doors and Windows shut. But that two men tempted by their Curiosity to do what fools are wont to do, had some such penalty, I know not what it was, inflicted upon them, as Actaon had for the like offence. [Page 130] And they now stand in some publick place cut out of Wood or Stone, to be shewn to any stranger that comes thither, like the Sign of the Two Logger-heads, with the same Motto belike, Nous sommes trois.

Pag. 99. lin. 7. Brought in my Court a certain Toper.] In the Latin, attulit in curiâ meâ quandam Toper. I know what the adverb Toper signifies among the ancient Latines; but what the word means here, I confess, I am in the dark. It doth certainly stand for some thing (I was thinking a Taper) which he brought with him into Court, and sware upon it, as he should have done upon the holy Gospels. I can­not imagine, that by quandam Toper, shold be intended some Woman or Girl, whose Name was Toper, whom he brought along with him, and in defiance to the Court, laying his hand upon her, took his Oath as formally, as if he had done it upon the holy Evangelists.


ONe thing I forgot to acquaint thee with in the Preface, that, whereas the Author himself had divided each Book into se­veral Sections, which were very unequal and incommodious, I thought it much more convenient for thy ease and profit, to distribute them into Chapters; together with the Argument or Contents of each Chapter at the beginning; and withal, that no one may complain, that I have injured the Author, by altering his Method, I have left his Sections also marked with a Numeral Note 1, 2, 3, &c. on the side of the inner or outer Margin.



IN the Translator's Preface, p. 4. l. 15. r. (and hath that of crabbed in it beside) and as to the method is so intricate.

Pag. 11. l. 2. r. and strifes: p. 14. l. 50. r. Pieces: p. 17. l. 41. r. Borderers: p. 20. l. 16. for facts, r. toils: p. 21. l. 24. r. and Money: p. 30. l. 16, r. Lazzes: p. 31. l. 28. r. and Breeding: p. 34. l. 14. r. peccatum: l. 40. r. or his eyes: p. 35. l. 2. r. Quid: p. 43. l. 7. r. sorry old Verse: p. 49. l. 48. r. too truly: p. 56. l. 6. r. Warden: p. 61. l. 13. r. Vulgar: l. 21. r. bestowing her: p. 62. l. 25. r. misdemeanour: p. 65. l. 11. r. add: p. 72. l. 43. r. seasonably: p. 74. l. 5. r. Glocester. Whom: p. 85. l. 14. r. strict: p. 86. l. 26. r. that in the: p. 87. l. 5. r. What. Of him: p. 91. l. 17. r. him: p. 92. l. 32. r. Cattle: p. 96. l. 34. r. turned: p. 108. l. 33. r. retired: p. 110. l. 8. r. Nep­tune, as: p. 112. l. 34. r. unknown: p. 113. l. 34. r. Inlagh: p. 116. l. 18. r. three things: p. 117. l. 47. r. found: p. 122. l. 6. r. arretted: p. 123. l. 9. r. quilleted.


This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.