Reviews of Books

1918 English Historical Review  
of the communes which received royal confirmation. The value of this to the-student of social and ft^mi'niiit.rfti.iiw history is immense. For this reason alone the Antes of Philip Augustus will be indispensable to British no less than to French scholars.* We congratulate M. Delaborde upon the successful beginning of a task which will become increasingly important as he reaches the central years of Philip's reign. F. M. POWICXE. Calendar of Inquisitions, Miscellaneous (Chancery). Vols.IandIL
more » ... ry). Vols.IandIL (London: HJtf. Stationery Office, 1916.) MOBZ than four thousand five hundred documents, ranging in date from ' 1219' to 1349, are calendared in these volumes. A somewhat elaborate introduction is largely concerned with the history and previous arrangement of these records, but the chief points to grasp are that this calendar is intended to be carried down to the accession of Henry VH, like the Calendar of Inquiaitiona 'post mortem and the list of Inquisitions ad quod damnwn, and that the documents with which it deals are mainly of a residual character after the above two classes of inquisitions had been separately arranged. These three series will henceforth comprise all the Chancery Inquisitions down to the above-mentioned date. With regard to the somewhat technical discussion in the preface, one may note, as to the county inventories of escheats, extracted long ago from an ancient inventory in seven volumes, that the volume for Essex' had already been lost in Lemon's time' (1775). For Morant certainly used many of the records here calendared for his History of Essex (1768), and his means of access to the public records, through his son-in-law Astle, together with his acquiring habit in the matter of manuscripts, may possibly account for the loss. If so the volume may exist aramig hi« manuscript collections. It is justly observed by the Deputy Keeper of the Records that' a reference to the analysis given in the index of subjects under the heading Writ and Inquisition will give some indication of the great variety and interest of these inquisitions'. There are more than seven columns under this heading alone in the index of subjects to voL L To historical students the index of subjects is always of such importance that one is grateful for the forty-two pages devoted to it in this volume. There is some lack, however, of uniformity in the matter, for this index barely runs to twentyfive pages in vol. ii, where also there is no heading' Writ and Inquisition'. Of ' the great variety and interest' of this calendar there can be no question ; indeed, it is difficult to pick and choose among its vivid illustrations of medieval life. The most fm/nimting, perhaps, are those afforded by inquisitions on deaths alleged to have been caused by chance medley or in self-defence. The latter and generally successful plea was usually based on amazingly incredible stories by the culprit. In spite of the traditional resort of an "RngKflhmaTi to his fists, it is clear that our forefathers, on slight provocation, had recourse to admitted or extemporized weapons; in the fields, at the tavern, at home, or even at play. Fatalities were thus * Some criticisms and additions by M. Halphen, who hf* al*o compiled a useful list of the more important document*, will be found in the Sevue Historiqae, March-April 1017, cxxiT. 320-5. at The University of Miami Libraries on June 27, 2015 Downloaded from REVIEWS OF BOOKS July caused among men evidently quick to wrath. But the arm of the law was strong. In 1273 William Mauduyt, of the late earl of Warwick's family and a tenant by knight-service, had robbed a carter of two horses and was duly hanged' at the suit of the carter' for larceny and for breaking gaoL The law and its officers inspired terror; Clavering of Callaly Castle was of illustrious descent, but when Roger de Wavering's widow was indicted for murder she evaded the sheriff, she said, for fear of a clerk of his,' who threatened that, when she was imprisoned at Newcastle-on-Tyne, having drawn her teeth, he would carnally know her against her will', in the sheriffs absence. This was in 1306. More than two pages are devoted to an interesting letter from John de Barham, who was sent in 1302 to take seisin, on the king's behalf, of the Earl of Hereford's lands in the west. He describes how he tendered the oath of fealty and took homage from the earl's tenants. At Brecknock Castle there were' more than 2,000 Welsh' who knew no "RwglinV So he took an interpreter [latimaiut 7], a clerk, who had from T*™ the words of fealty and then charged the tenants in Welsh. The abstract wrongly reads 'one Latinw, a clerk', which obscures the point, for we clearly have here the old Domesday practice of rising the clergy as interpreters. In 1270 a notable inquisition was held at the' Stone Cross' by the sheriff of Middlesex, to determine whether two or three acres called' Kyngesgore' between ' Knichtebrugg' and Kensington were escheat or ancient demesne. The return states that they were ancient demesne, the proceeds of which belonged to the ferm of Middlesex. Was t.hia the origin of Kensington Gore, and have we in that name a relic of the open field, in view of the fact that these acres were tempore axluso common ? ' Stone Cross [co. Middlesex]' is not further identified in the index, but is of peculiar interest. No. 2313 in this volume gives' a clue to its locality by showing that in 1289 the parson of St. Maryle-Strand was there assaulted, and in vol. ii (no. 1556) we have an inquisition as to Westminster held at 'Stone Cross without the bar of the New Temple' in 1337. But the climax is an inquisition held in the church of St. Mary-le-Strand, at which the jurors confidently stated, in 1311, that ' the stone cross without the bar of the New Temple, London, was erected by King William Rufus in devotion to the Holy Cross and for the health of the souls of himself and his mother, Queen Maud, whose body rested there while being carried to Westminster for burial' (no. 110). This remarkable instance of the Bed King's pietas would have been news to Freeman, for the queen, he writes, ' was of course buried in her own church at Caen'. But the jurors of 1311 doubtless had the Eleanor crosses in their mind* With greater daring the Ipswich jurors who desired in 1340 to exalt their town as a port, testified that it was ' first appointed the capital of Suffolk, by reason of the port, by a'-pagan king, Ypus by name, who called the town Ypeswich' (no. 1708). As the two volumes were indexed by different officers and with-different results, they had better be separately dealt with. In voL i (1219-1307) the chief feature is found in the Inquisition** de BebeUHnu (nos. 609-940) after the barons' war. Mr. Pearson, in his fresh edition (1871) of Blaauw*s The Barons' War, was disposed, in his important appendix on the 'Royalists' and the ' rebels' (pp. 364-80), to depreciate the evidence of these records
doi:10.1093/ehr/xxxiii.cxxxi.395 fatcat:lkkz7uloinadrarwgld7z2wpoi