ID: MARG_180_011

TitleJohn Kidby Lord of Manor of West Mersea 1656 Court Leete ERO D/DA T217
AbstractJohn Kidby Lord of Manor of West Mersea 1656 Court Leete transcribed from Essex Record Office document D/DA T217

Transcriber Jools Hoyle 26 March 2021

Westmersey
1. At the Court Leete [Note 1] & Gen[er]all Court Baron [Note 2] houlden there for
2. John Kidby gent[leman] Lord of the said Manno[ur] the sixteenth day of Aprill in the yeare
3. of o[ur] Lord One Thowsand sixe Hundred and Fifty sixe by Samuel Cabecke
4. gent[leman] Steward [Note 3] there it is thus Inrolled [Note 4]
5. At the Court houlden the tenth day of September in the yeare of o[ur] Lord One Thowsand sixe Hundred & Fifty two Thomas
6. Convers [Note 5] and Anne his wife were admitted [Note 6] to them & the heires of the body of the said Thomas on the body of the said
7. Anne lawfully begotten and for want of such Issue to John Convers his father unto one Mans[i]on house
8. and certaine lands to the same adioyneing called little Burrs and Andrewes [Note 7] in Westmersey aforesaid late in the
9. occupac[i]on of John Willsonn as by the rolls etc And whereas there is such a custome w[i]\th/in the said Manno[ur]
10. wherof the memory of man is not to the contrary that a Custumary Tenant of the said Manno[ur] may sell his intayled [Note 8]
11. lands for certaine causes & considerac[i]ons by the Steward & homage [Note 9] discussed Now at this Court comes the
12. said Thomas & Anne (shee the said Anne being first by the Steward soley [Npte 10] & secretly [Note 11] examined & consenting to it)
13. and gave the Court to understand that the said Thomas is soe indebted to sev[er]all p[er]sons th[a]t w[i]\th/out selling of the
14. p[re]mises hee cannot pay them Therfore hee desireth of the favour of the Lord to sell the same w[hi]ch being
15. discussed in the Court and seemeing iust (ie just) to the Steward and homage they doe give leave accordingly and \they/ did
16. surrende[r] into the hands of the Lord by the hands of the said Steward all and singular the said p[re]mises w[i]th the
17. app[ur]ten[au[nc]is [Note 12] To the use & behoofe [Note 13] of Thomas Lucas [Note 14] of Colchester in the County of Essex gent[leman] his heires & assignes
18. Who being p[re]sent in Court & desireing the same the Lord by his Steward did grante & by the rod [Note 15] deliver
19. therof seasen [Note 16] To have & to hould the Tenem[en]ts aforesaid w[i]th thapp[ur]ten[aun]ces to the said Thomas Lucas his heires &
20. assignes of the Lord at the will of the Lord by the rents & services therfore due & of right accustomed
21. saveing every man his right gave to the Lord his fine [Note 17] did his fealty [Note 18] and is admitted Tenant

22. Ex[amine]d by Samuel Cabecke
23. Steward there

Note 1 court leete - a less frequent manorial court dealing with criminal proceedings etc
Note 2 court baron - regular manorial court dealing with disputes, payments and administration of the manor
Note 3 Steward - person appointed by the lord of the manor to manage the affairs of the estate
Note 4 entered into the record, which was kept on a roll
Note 5 Thomas Convers is mentioned in the 1657 Quarter Sessions records for "non-payment of highway rate" See MARG_001_104
Note 6 admittance - ceremony by which a new tenant gained entry to a customary holding, by paying a fine; usually preceded by a surrender
Note 7 "Andrews" is listed in the Essex place names project, under West Mersea. It is also listed as a tenement in the 1509 will of Thomas Dorel of Fingringhoe
Note 8 intayled land - land settled on a number of persons in succession, so that it cannot be bequeathed at pleasure by any one possessor (OED)
Note 9 the homage - a number of leading tenants of the manor, often serving as jury etc
Note 10 alone
Note 11 privately
Note 12 appurtenances - rights and duties attached to the land-holding, such as grazing rights or the payment of dues to the lord
Note 13 behoofe - to the use, benefit or advantage of someone (OED)
Note 14 We cannot be sure which Thomas Lucas this is but he was probably a member of the Lucas family of St John's Abbey, Colchester, and could well have been a nephew/cousin etc of the Royalist hero Sir Charles Lucas.
Note 15 by the rod - of the granting, holding or surrendering of copyhold land tenure by means of a ceremony during which the transfer of tenure was symbolised by the handing over of a rod. The ceremony fell out of use with time, but the terminology and the process remained the same. (OED)
Note 16 seasen/season - possession in law (OED)
Note 17 not a penalty, but refers to a sum of money due, eg to the lord of the manor
Note 18 to do fealty - to acknowledge the obligation of fidelity to a lord (OED)


Translation by Jools Hoyle 26 March 2021

West Mersea
1. At the Court Leete and general Court Baron held there for
2. John Kidby, gentleman, Lord of the Manor there, on the 16th April
3. 1656 by Samuel Cabecke,
4. gentleman, the steward there, it is recorded as follows:
5. at the court held on 10th September 1652, Thomas
6. Convers and his wife Anne were granted customary tenancy for them and their legitimate heirs,
7. and if they had no legitimate children, for Thomas's father John Convers, one house
8. and certain land adjoining the house, called Little Burrs and Andrewes in West Mersea, lately
9. occupied by John Willson, as the record shows. It is recorded that there is a custom within the Manor of West Mersea
10. which is not in dispute, that a customary tenant may sell his entailed
11. land under certain circumstances after consideration by the steward and the homage. At this court
12. Thomas and Anne (Anne having been first questioned alone and privately, having agreed to this)
13. gave the court to understand that Thomas owed so much money to several people that without selling
14. the premises, he could not pay them all. Therefore, he asked for the lord's permission to sell the land and premises.
15. After discussion in court the steward and the homage gave their agreement and they (ie Thomas and Anne)
16. surrendered all of the land and premises with
17. all the rights and duties attached to it to Thomas Lucas, gentleman, of Colchester in the county of Essex, and to his heirs and assigns.
18. As Thomas Lucas was present at court and wished to go ahead, the steward, as the lord's representative, formally granted (by the custom of the rod) [Note 1] and delivered
19. full possession of the said tenements and appurtenances to Thomas Lucas, his heirs
20. and assigns at the will of the lord, along with the customary rents and services due,
21. not excluding any other man's rights. Thomas Lucas paid the entry fine [Note 2] due to the lord,
22. checked by Samuel Cabecke
23. Steward there

Note 1 by the rod - of the granting, holding or surrendering of copyhold land tenure by means of a ceremony during which the transfer of tenure was symbolised by the handing over of a rod. The ceremony fell out of use with time, but the terminology and the process remained the same. (OED)
Note 2 customary payment made by new tenant to the lord, on inheriting or acquiring any manorial land

Published1656
SourceMersea Museum
IDMARG_180_011