4. Guardians Or Wardens Of The Grey Friars Of London.
Henry De Treviso (1224–1231 ?), one of the first friars
to come to England, was a lay-brother from Lombardy. He
was chosen Guardian of London for his sanctity and discretion.
During his first years he taught a night-school at St. Peter
Cornhill. In 1230 he was Vicar of the English Province for
Agnellus. But, writes Eccleston, he could not bear such promotion, and afterwards apostatised from the Order, and returned to his own country. His name is less correctly given
as Henry de Cervise (De Adventu Fratrum, 7, 8, 13, 14).
Solomon (1231–1233 ?) was the first novice of the Order
admitted in England. He was ordained acolyte by Stephen
Langton, i.e., before July, 1228. Afterwards he lay ill for
two years with gout, but by the advice of Friar Jordan, the
Dominican General, who visited England early in 1230, was
miraculously cured by a pilgrimage to St. Eloy at Noyon. On
his return he became Guardian of London, an office which he
held before 22nd August, 1231. He seems to have been ill
for a long time before his death, which perhaps took place in
1233. Eccleston describes him as one of those who had no
gift of lecturing or preaching, but was distinguished as the
chosen confessor of courtiers and citizens (De Adventu, 9, 1518, 75, 94).
John De Kethene (1233 ?) was Guardian of London before he was appointed Provincial of Scotland by the General
Elias. This can hardly have been later than 1233–1234 (cf.
De Adventu, 51). Kethene ruled Scotland several years, and
was transferred to Ireland in 1239. He was present with
William of Nottingham at the General Chapter of Metz in
1254, (fn. 1) when he had been Minister about twenty years (De
Adventu, 39, 50–53, 85, 128).
Peter of Tewkesbury (1234–1236) was Guardian in
1234, about which time he went to Rome with Agnellus,
whom he confessed on his death-bed. Afterwards he was
Custodian of Oxford for twelve years (1236?–1248). He was
Minister of Cologne in 1250, and fifth Provincial of England
from 1254 to 1256, or 1257 (De Adventu, 43, 94, 95, 97, 113,
126–128; Little, Greyfriars, 127).
Hugh (fl. 1245) was a student of Cambridge, where Friar
Thomas Ufford heard him preach. He was Guardian of London whilst William of Nottingham was Provincial, i.e., between 1240 and 1254 (Liber Exemplorum, 41, B.S.F.S.; De
A . . . . (c. 1250), Friar A., Guardian of London, is mentioned by Adam Marsh in a letter addressed to Friar Thomas
of York, probably about 1250, or a little later. He joined
with W., the Prior of the Dominicans at London, and the
Franciscan poet, Thomas Hales, in addressing a letter to
Fulk Basset, who was Bishop of London from 1244 to 1258.
He might possibly be Adam of Hereford, the secretary of
Adam Marsh who, about 1248, advised the Provincial to send
him to pursue his studies at London, since he was too able
for a subordinate post (Mon. Franc., i., 181, 314–315, 396).
Roger of Canterbury (1257) is mentioned as Guardian
of London on 16th April, 1257 (Cal. Pat. Rolls, Henry III.,
1247–1258, p. 592).
J . . . . was Guardian in 1282 (Peckham, Registrum iii.,
(fn. 2) William de Ludgershale was locum tenens for the Guardian
of London in 1291. Hugh de Trapston was at the same time
Custos (Mon. Franc., ii., 56).
Nicholas (1294) was Guardian on 25th December, 1294
(id., ii., 61).
Thomas de Whapelad (1303) was Guardian on 19th
January, 1303 (Cal. Pat. Rolls, Edward I., iv., 108). He
either died or resigned very soon afterwards.
Henry De Sutton (1303, 1307) was Guardian in Lent,
1303 (see p. 164 below). He also occurs as Guardian on 25th
July, 1304 (Letter-Book, C., p. 138), and in 1307, when he
received 40 marks from Edward I., as a pittance for the friars
attending the General Chapter at Toulouse (Little, Greyfriars,
p. 219). He must have vacated his office before October, 1309.
But on 30th July, 1319, a pittance for the London Franciscans
was paid to him, (fn. 3) though he is not then described as Guardian.
He died soon after 1327 (Collectanea Franciscana, i., 148).
He gave the stained glass for the north window of the Ambulatory in the church (see p. 168 below). Sutton procured from
Henry le Waleys a legacy for his convent of two marks annually
(see p. 162 below); the date given—1302—if correct must refer
to the spring of 1303—new style. There is a sermon attributed to Sutton in New College, MS. 92 at Oxford.
Robert De Basingstoke (1309) "gardianus fratrum
minorum London," took part in the proceedings against the
Templars at London on 27th to 30th October, 1309 (Wilkins,
Concilia, ii., 336–339).
Thomas of St. Dunstan? (1310) was perhaps Guardian
on 13th January, 1310, when a demise of an annual quitrent by
Hugh of Oxford, was directed to be used "at the discretion
of Brother Thomas de St. Dunstan, if alive, or of the Guardian
of the Friars Minors of London for the time being" (LetterBook, D., p. 214). Thomas of St. Dunstan was 44th lector
at Oxford, early in the fourteenth century (Little, Greyfriars,
Walter De Warleberge (1311) described simply as
"gardianus ordinis minorum" was present at the proceedings
against the Templars in London on 30th March, 1311 (Wilkins,
Concilia, ii., 370). He was probably Guardian of London.
William De Querle (1330) was Guardian on 26th
March, 1330, when Edward III. wrote to the Count of Flanders that Querle had made complaint that whilst returning
from the Court of Rome he had been robbed by Flemings on
the sea of 89 florins, books, and other things, to the value of
70l.; the restitution promised by the Count's representatives
had not been made, so Querle was going to Flanders with
this letter (Cal. Close Rolls, Edw. III., ii., 131). The Count
replied on 10th May that he had received the letters prescribed
by Querle, and had promised that compensation should be
made, but Querle alleged that he could not wait (Foedera, ii.
(1), 551; the year is there given as 1324, but there would
seem to be an error).
John Mablethorpe or Malberthorpe (1368), probably
a native of Mablethorpe, Lincoln, was Guardian on 1st March,
1368 (see p. 171 below). On 9th May, 1370, when he is described simply as confessor of the late Queen Philippa, he had
a grant of 40 marks annually to pray for her soul (Cal. Pat.
Rolls, Edward III., xiv., 432). He may be the John, Guardian
of the Friars Minors of London who, on 5th February, 1386,
demanded the arrest of Friar William Howys, an apostate
(Chancery Warrants, 1765/18: cf. Cal. Pat. Rolls, Richard II.,
iii., 168). Tanner (Bibliotheca, 503) says John Malberthorpe
owned MS. Norwic. More. 279, and entered on many vacant
pages extracts from fathers and doctors; but the identification
with the friar is uncertain; there were other persons of the
name, as John Malberthorpe, who was Rector of Loughton,
Essex, from 1429 to 1441.
Robert Hyndon (1391 ?–1397) is probably the Robert,
Guardian of London, who occurs in October, 1391 (Cal. Pat.
Rolls, Richard II., iv., 522; Chancery Warrants, 1765/19).
Robert Hyndon or Hynton was Guardian on 3rd February,
1393 (Letter-Book, H., p. 390), and on 22nd July, 1397 (see p.
John Bruyll (1398) was Guardian on 1st March, 1398
(see p. 174 below), and also on 20th July of the same year
(Cal. Pat. Rolls, Richard II., vi., 483; Chancery Warrants,
1765/20). He may be identified with the John Bryll of the
Convent of Newcastle, who was appointed papal chaplain on
5th July, 1396 (Bullarium Franciscanum, vii., 60), and the John
Bruyll of the Convent of Canterbury, who owned and annotated Digby MS. 153, now in the Bodleian Library. On
25th January, 1402, John Bryll, O.F.M. and priest, was provided to the See of Annadown in Ireland, and two days later
was ordered to go to his diocese. On 27th September, 1403,
John, Bishop of Annadown, dwelling at London, was directed
to decide a matrimonial suit from the Diocese of Lincoln (Cal.
Papal Registers, v., 500, 503, 522, 532).
Robert Chamberleyn (1403) occurs as Guardian on
15th May, 1403 (Chancery Warrants, 1765/21; see p. 207
below). It was probably at an earlier date that he received a
safe-conduct from Charles VI. of France, which was granted
to "frére Robert Chambrilen religieulx de l'ordre des fréres
Mineurs du convent de Londres en Angleterre, lequel a acheté
en ceste nostre ville de Paris quatre volumes de livres, entre
lesquels est ung livre nommé le livre de la propriétés des
choses" (Hist. Litt. de France, xxx., 364; the only date given
is 4th July). Chamberleyn was buried in the All Hallows
Chapel (see p. 79 below).
William Russell (1425) was a friar of Stamford; he
had argued that a religious might lie with a woman without
mortal sin; this thesis was condemned in the Convocation of
Canterbury at St. Paul's on 12th October, 1424. On 28th
January, 1425, when he was certainly Guardian of London he
preached that tithes need not be paid to the parish priest, but
might be applied "into pitous use of poor men". He was
again cited before Convocation on 15th May, and enjoined to
recant at Paul's Cross. He failed to appear; his doctrines
were condemned by the two universities, and he was removed
from his office. Russell went to Rome to defend his doctrine,
but on 12th August was imprisoned by the Pope. In January,
1426, he escaped, and returning to England was sheltered
for one night by the friars at London. Finally he surrendered
or was captured, and on 21st March, 1427, read his recantation at Paul's Cross. He was ordered to be imprisoned at
the Pope's pleasure, but seems to have been released before
1429, when he incepted as D.D. at Oxford, though he is then
described as an Austin Friar. His teaching on tithes was
condemned by the University, and down to 1564 everyone
taking a degree had formally to abjure it (Little, Greyfriars,
85, 86, 257–259; Wilkins, Concilia, iii., 438–462; Munimenta
Academica, 376; Epist. Acad. Oxon., 49). Russell when
Guardian gave three pounds towards the cost of tiling the
roof of the Cloister under the Fratry (see p. 171 below); this
may imply that he was Guardian for some time previous to
1425. In Corpus Christi College MS. 126 at Oxford there is
a Compendium super Porphyrii Universalia by William Russell,
Friar Minor, and Comment. in Aristotelis Praedicamenta probably by the same author.
Roger Juyll or Jule (1437) occurs as Guardian of
London on 6th June, 1437 (Cal. Pat. Rolls, Henry VI., iii., 13).
He had previously been Guardian of Jerusalem, and was the
only Guardian of the House who was buried in the Choir
(see p. 74 below). He may have succeeded Russell. He
either died or resigned before November, 1440.
John Kyrye (1440, 1458) is stated to have been Guardian
with intervals for twenty years; he occurs on 30th November,
1440, and on 26th March, 1458 (see pp. 208 and 210 below).
These two occasions must belong to two separate terms. I
have not discovered who was Guardian in the interval. Friar
Brackley wrote in October, 1460, that it was rumoured that
Queen Margaret intended to have Doctors Kyrye and Goddard put to death (Paston Letters, iii., 228). In November,
1465, William Gregory bequeathed 20s. "to the frere Kiry,
frere menour" (Collections of a London Citizen, p. xliv., Camd.
Soc.). Kyrye was confessor to Edward IV. He died on
30th September, 1474, and was buried in the All Hallows
Chapel (see p. 79 below).
James Walle (c. 1470), described on p. 105 below as
"episcopus Darensis et suffraganeus episcopi Lond., et
gardianus hujus loci," was consecrated Bishop of Kildare on
5th April, 1475, but resigned very soon afterwards (Cotton,
Fasti Eccl. Hib., ii., 229). He held the livings of Laindon in
1483, of St. Christopher by the Stocks, London, in 1485, and
of Great Hockesley in 1488. He was suffragan of London
in 1491 (Stubbs, Reg. Sacr. Angl., 206). He probably
succeeded Kyrye as Guardian early in the reign of Edward IV.
The date of his death makes it unlikely that he was Guardian
before Kyrye's second term in 1458. He died on 28th April,
1494, and was buried "coram altaribus" (p. 105 below).
John Allen (c. 1475 ?) is described on p. 78 below as
"sacre theologie professor, quondam gardianus loci". He
was son of John Allen, who died in 1463. If he may be
identified with the John Allen, B.D., of Cambridge, who was
incorporated B.D. at Oxford on 1st December, 1459 (Little,
Greyfriars, 41, 265), he may probably have been Guardian
after Walle, or he may not have been Guardian till after
Goddard. He was buried in the All Hallows Chapel (see p. 78
William Goddard, the younger (d. 1485), is to be distinguished from his contemporary, William Goddard the elder
(see p. 195 below). William Gregory, when bequeathing 13s.
4d. to "maister Godard the yonger" on 6th November, 1465,
calls him brother of "maister Godard thelder" (Collections
of a London Citizen, p. xliv.). The younger Goddard must
have been a person of some note by that time. He is described
below (p. 90) as "sacre theologie doctor, gardianus loci et
principuus benefactor eiusdem," and is said to have died on
26th September, 1485. His date as Guardian cannot be fixed
more clearly than between 1458 and 1485; but he probably
held office later than Walle, though he may have either preceded or succeeded Allen. He was buried in the Apostles'
Chapel (p. 90 below).
Richard Shrewsbury? (d. 1486) may possibly have been
Guardian as Nichols (Coll. Top. et Gen., v., 396) and Mr. Shepherd conjectured. But the reading on p. 129 below is obscure,
and no other Guardian of London is recorded as buried in the
Andrew Bavard (d. 1508). The earliest mention of
Bavard occurs in a note in Ottobuoni MS. 1565, f. 8vo in the
Vatican Library: "Istum librum fecit ligari frater Andreas
Bavard, custos librarie, anno dom. 1468, de comunibus elemosiuis prefate librarie collatis" (Coll. Franc., i., 135). The
Library appears to be that of the Grey Friars at Cambridge.
This note is of interest for comparison with the statement (p. 171
below) that in 1494 Bavard had choral books provided for the
Church of the Grey Friars at London. He does not seem to
have been Guardian at that time, but held the office in
February, 1497–1498 (see p. 107 below). He was S.T.P., presumably of Cambridge. He died on 10th March, 1507–1508
and was buried "coram altaribus" (p. 107 below).
Christopher Studley? (d. 1508) died on the same day
as Bavard. He is described on p. 102 below as "electus".
Mr. Little (Greyfriars, p. 269) conjectures that it should read
"electus gardianus," but there is no positive evidence. John
Person, who was buried in the same part of the church ("inter
chorum et altaria") is also described as "electus"; in his case
it does not seem that it can mean "Guardian-elect," for the
Guardianship was certainly not vacant in 1527 when Person
Henry Standish (1514) was D.D. of Oxford, and may
have become Guardian in 1508; he was a popular preacher
at Court in the early years of Henry VIII., and was probably
Guardian in July, 1514, when the king gave 10l. to Dr.
Standisshe and the Friars Minors for charges at the General
Chapter at Bridgwater (Letters and Papers, ii., p. 1465). According to an entry in Letter-Book, M. f. 237 (ap. Victoria
County History, i., 505), he was Provincial Minister in 1515.
Apparently, therefore, there is an error in the description of
him as Guardian in November, 1515, when he supported the
Act of 1513, which had restricted the benefit of clergy (Letters
and Papers, ii., 1313, 1314). Nor can it have been as Guardian that he refused to preach against foreign traders at
Easter, 1517 (Brewer, Henry VIII., i., 245–250). Standish
became Bishop of St. Asaph in May, 1518, and died on 9th
July, 1535. In his will he desired to be buried "inter fratres
Minores," apparently meaning Greyfriars, London; his monument there was destroyed in the Great Fire in 1666. He left
the Grey Friars of London 10l. for thirty trentals. Standish
was the foremost champion of the "Old Learning" in England, and engaged in an unequal controversy with Erasmus.
Nevertheless, at the close of his life, he accepted the royal
supremacy (Little, Greyfriars, 271–274; Seebohm, Oxford
Reformers, 326–327, 383–384; Dict. Nat. Biog., liii., 472).
John Cutler (1514–1518), who is described on p. 77
below as "sacre theologie professor, quondam gardianus loci,"
occurs as Guardian in 1514, 1515, and 1518 (Letter-Book, M.
ff. 224, 237, and Repertory, i., f. 13, ap. Victoria County History,
i., 507). He probably resigned in, or soon after, 1518, but
survived till 9th November, 1530. He was buried in the All
Walter Goodfield (d. 1521) supplicated as B.D. for
D.D. at Oxford on 3rd June, 1508, and was admitted D.D. on
27th June, 1510. He was then probably Guardian of the Oxford
Franciscans, an office which he had resigned before July,
1513. He must have been Guardian of London between
1518 and his death on 27th December, 1521. He was buried
in the All Hallows Chapel (Little, Greyfriars, 131, 337–339).
Thomas Cudnor (1526 ?–1535 ?) was a D.D., and occurs
as Guardian on 18th November, 1526 (Letters and Papers,
iv., 5870), and in 1529 and 1531 (see p. 176 below). As
Guardian he acknowledged the king's supremacy on 14th
May, 1534 (Letters and Papers, vii., 665). Bishop Standish
by his will, dated 3rd July, 1535, left his books to be distributed "secundum discretionem magistri Johannis Cudnor,
S.T.D., nunc gardiani Fratrum Minorum Londoniensium et
magistri Willelmi German eiusdem facultatis, et cuilibet ipsorum quinque marcas pro labore" (Little, Greyfriars, 273,
276). Cudnor died before 1538, and was buried in the All
Hallows Chapel; his is the last burial in the church before
the Surrender, which appears in the Register; it is given only
in the Index (see p. 136 below).
Thomas Chapman (1538) was Guardian in 1538. He
seems to have been a creature of Thomas Cromwell, and his
letters printed below (pp. 213–218) do not present him in a very
favourable light. In the "Surrender" on 12th November,
1538, he is described as S.T.D. He was granted an annuity of
13l. 6s. 8d., of which he was still in receipt as late as 1547
(Letters and Papers, XIV. (i) p. 602; XXI. (ii) p. 443).
Besides those whose position in the list can be given with
tolerable certainty there are two Guardians for whom no date
can be assigned.
John Seller, "doctor theologie quondam huius loci
Gardianus," who was buried "inter chorum et altaria" (p. 102
Thomas Westgate, "valens pater . . . quondam
Custos et Gardianus Londonie," who was also buried "inter
chorum et altaria" (see p. 104 below).
Chamberleyn is the earliest Guardian whose burial is recorded. Probably therefore both Seller and Westgate belong
to the fifteenth century; there are certainly two or more names
missing between Kyrye's first term and the accession of Bavard—say between 1445 and 1495. There are perhaps also gaps
between Bavard and Standish, and between Goodfield and
Cudnor; but if Seller and Westgate had died so recently the
compiler might be expected to have given their dates.