Life in a Medieval College: The Story of the Vicars-Choral of York Minster

By Frederick Harrison | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 18
MISCELLANEOUS NOTES AND RECORDS

1. THE CHARTER OF 1421

Henry V. 26 May, 1421.

Henry, by the grace of God, etc. Know ye that, since 36 vicars of the canons in the choir of our cathedral church of St. Peter in York, to the honour of God and the increase of divine worship, at the nomination or presentation of the canons, have been admitted by the dean and canons and placed in stalls, and since, by the assignation of the dean and chapter, they have obtained a habitation near the cemetery of the said church, and their succentor has free administration of all the lands, etc., which they have or may have in the business which arises out of these possessions as well as in defending their rights in the same at law; and since the subchanter or a vicar appointed in his stead makes a return every year of his administration and distributes to the vicars their provender; and since Walter de Gray, formerly archbishop, and the dean and chapter, ordained that Alan Salvator, vice-succentor, should have free administration of their lands, etc., which ordinance Henry, king of England, confirmed by letters-patent; and since the thirty-six vicars have administered their lands, etc., and the advowsons of churches and chantries by royal licence; WE, therefore, commending the honest conversation and devotion which the vicars have shewn, wish and concede, for ourselves and our heirs as much as in us lieth, that the thirty-six vicars and their successors as vicars may have the right to continue a college and to elect one of their number to be their custos, with the assent of the chapter without special licence on each occasion from the Crown, to have a common chest and a common seal, to be a corporate body, to hold lands, etc., from us in free burgage in perpetuity, and to prosecute causes and actions, real and personal, and to defend the same before any of the judges, secular and ecclesiastical, and we commit these rights into

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