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Index to Stow's original Survey of London written in 1598

TOWER STREET WARD

The first ward in the east part of this city within the wall is called Tower street ward, and extendeth along the river of Thames from the said Tower in the east almost to Belinsgate in the west. One half of the Tower, the ditch on the west side, and bulwarks adjoining, do stand within that part where the wall of the city of old time went straight from the postern gate south to the river of Thames, before that the Tower was built. From and without the Tower ditch, west and by north, is the said Tower hill, sometime a large plot of ground, now greatly straitened by incroachments (unlawfully made and suffered) for gardens and houses; some on the bank of the Tower ditch, whereby the Tower ditch is marred, but more near unto the wall of the city from the postern north, till over against the principal fore-gate of the Lord Lumley’s house, etc.; but the Tower ward goeth no further that way.

Upon this hill is always readily prepared, at the charges of the city, a large scaffold and gallows of timber, for the execution of such traitors or transgressors as are delivered out of the Tower, or otherwise, to the sheriffs of London by writ, there to be executed. I read, that in the fifth of King Edward IV.[131] a scaffold and gallows was there set up by other the king’s officers, and not of the city’s charges, whereupon the mayor and his brethren complained, but were answered by the king that the Tower hill was of the liberty of the city; and whatsoever was done in that point was not in derogation of the city’s liberties, and therefore commanded proclamation[132] to be made, as well within the city as in the suburbs, as followeth: “Forasmuch as, the seventh day of this present month of November, gallows were erect and set up besides our Tower of London, within the liberties and franchises of our city of London, in derogation and prejudice of the liberties and franchises of this city, the king our sovereign lord would it be certainly understood that the erection and setting up of the said gallows was not done by his commandment; wherefore the king our sovereign lord willeth that the erection and setting up the said gallows be not any precedent or example thereby hereafter to be taken, in hurt, prejudice, or derogation of the franchises, liberties, and privileges of the said city, which he at all times hath had, and hath in his benevolence, tender favour, and good grace, etc.[119] Apud Westminst. 9 die Novemb. anno regni nostri quinto.” On the north side of this hill is the said Lord Lumley’s house, and on the west side divers houses lately built, and other incroachments along south to Chick lane,[133] on the east of Barking church, at the end whereof you have Tower street stretching from the Tower hill, west to St. Margaret Patten’s church parsonage.

Now therefore, to begin at the east end of the street, on the north side thereof, is the fair parish church called Allhallows Barking, which standeth in a large, but sometime far larger, cemetery or churchyard; on the north side whereof was sometime built a fair chapel, founded by King Richard I.; some have written that his heart was buried there under the high altar. This chapel was confirmed and augmented by King Edward I. Edward IV. gave license to his cousin John, Earl of Worcester, to found there a brotherhood for a master and brethren; and he gave to the custos of that fraternity, which was Sir John Scot, knight, Thomas Colte, John Tate, and John Croke, the priory of Totingbecke, and advowson of the parish church of Streatham, in the county of Surrey, with all the members and appurtenances, and a part of the priory of Okeborn in Wiltshire, both priors aliens, and appointed it to be called the king’s chapel or chantry, In capella Beatæ Mariæ de Barking. King Richard III. new built and founded therein a college of priests, etc. Hamond de Lega was buried in that chapel. Robert Tate, mayor of London, 1488,[134] and other, were there buried. This chapel and college were suppressed and pulled down in the year 1548, the 2nd of King Edward VI. The ground was employed as a garden-plot during the reigns of King Edward, Queen Mary, and part of Queen Elizabeth, till at length a large strong frame of timber and brick was set thereon, and employed as a store-house of merchants’ goods brought from the sea by Sir William Winter, etc.

Monuments in the parish church of Allhallows Barking, not defaced, are these:—Sir Thomas Studinham, of Norwich diocess, knight, 1469; Thomas Gilbart, draper and merchant of the staple, 1483; John Bolt, merchant of the staple, 1459; Sir John Stile, knight, draper, 1500. William Thinne, esq., one of the clerks of the Green cloth, and master of the household to King Henry VIII., 1546; Humfrey Monmouth, draper, one of the sheriffs, 1535; Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, beheaded 1546;[120] Sir Richard Devereux, son and heir to the Lord Ferrers of Chartley; Richard Browne, esq. 1546; Philip Dennis, esq. 1556; Andrew Evenger, salter; William Robinson, mercer, alderman, 1552; William Armorer, cloth-worker, esquire, governor of the pages of honour, or master of the heance men, servant to Henry VIII., Edward VI., and Queen Mary, buried 1560. Besides which there be divers tombs without inscription. John Crolys and Thomas Pike, citizens of London, founded a chantry there 1388.

By the west end of this parish church and chapel, lieth Sidon lane, now corruptly called Sything lane, from Tower street up north to Hart street. In this Sidon lane divers fair and large houses are built, namely, one by Sir John Allen, sometime mayor of London, and of council unto King Henry VIII.; Sir Francis Walsingham, knight, principal secretary to the queen’s majesty that now is, was lodged there, and so was the Earl of Essex, etc. At the north-west corner of this lane standeth a proper parish church of St. Olave, which church, together with some houses adjoining, as also others over against it in Hart street, are of the said Tower street ward. Monuments in this parish church of St. Olave be these:—Richard Cely and Robert Cely, fellmongers, principal builders and benefactors of this church; Dame Johan, wife to Sir John Zouch, 1439; John Clarenciaulx, king of arms, 1427; Thomas Sawle; Sir Richard Haddon, mercer, mayor 1512; Thomas Burnell, mercer, 1548; Thomas Morley, gentleman, 1566; Sir John Radcliffe, knight, 1568; and Dame Anne his wife, 1585; Chapone, a Florentine gentleman, 1582; Sir Hamond Vaughan, knight; George Stoddard, merchant; etc.

Then have ye out of Tower street, also on the north side, one other lane, called Marte lane, which runneth up towards the north, and is for the most part of this Tower street ward; which lane is about the third quarter thereof divided from Aldgate ward, by a chain to be drawn athwart the said lane, above the west end of Hart street. Cokedon hall, sometime at the south-west end of Marte lane, I read of.[135]

A third lane out of Tower street, on the north side, is called Mincheon lane, so called of tenements there sometime pertaining to the Minchuns or nuns of St. Helen’s in Bishopsgate street. This lane is all of the said ward, except the corner house towards Fenchurch street. In this lane of old time dwelt divers strangers[121] born of Genoa and those parts; these were commonly called galley men, as men that came up in the galleys brought up wines and other merchandises, which they landed in Thames street, at a place called Galley key; they had a certain coin of silver amongst themselves, which were halfpence of Genoa, and were called Galley halfpence; these halfpence were forbidden in the 13th of Henry IV., and again by parliament in the 4th of Henry V. It was, that if any person bring into this realm halfpence, suskinges, or dodkins, he should be punished as a thief; and he that taketh or payeth such money shall leese a hundred shillings, whereof the king shall have the one half, and he that will sue the other half. Notwithstanding, in my youth, I have seen them pass current, but with some difficulty, for that the English halfpence were then, though not so broad, somewhat thicker and stronger.

The Clothworkers’ hall is in this lane. Then at the west end of Tower street have ye a little turning towards the north to a fair house sometime belonging to one named Griste, for he dwelt there in the year 1449. And Jack Cade, captain of the rebels in Kent, being by him in this his house feasted, when he had dined, like an unkind guest, robbed him of all that was there to be found worth the carriage. Next to this is one other fair house, sometime built by Angell Dune, grocer, alderman of London, since possessed by Sir John Champneis, alderman, and mayor of London. He built in this house a high tower of brick, the first that I ever heard of in any private man’s house, to overlook his neighbours in this city. But this delight of his eye was punished with blindness some years before his death. Since that time. Sir Percevall Hart, a jolly courtier, and knight-harbinger to the queen, was lodged there, etc. From this house, somewhat west, is the parish church of St. Margaret’s Pattens; to the which church and house, on the north side, and as far over against on the south, stretcheth the farthest west part of this ward.

And, therefore, to begin again at the east end of Tower street, on the south side, have ye Beare lane, wherein are many fair houses, and runneth down to Thames street. The next is Sporiar lane, of old time so called, but since and of later time named Water lane, because it runneth down to the water gate by the Custom house in Thames street. Then is there Hart lane for Harpe lane, which likewise runneth down into Thames street. In this Hart lane is the Bakers’ hall, sometime the dwelling-house of John Chichley, chamberlain of London, who[122] was son to William Chichley, alderman of London, brother to William Chichley, archdeacon of Canterburie, nephew to Robert Chichley, mayor of London, and to Henry Chichley, archbishop of Canterburie. This John Chichley, saith John Leland, had twenty-four children. Sir Thomas Kirrioll, of Kent, after he had been long prisoner in France, married Elizabeth, one of the daughters of this Chichley, by whom he had this Chichley’s house. This Elizabeth was secondly married to Sir Ralfe Ashton, knight-marshal, and thirdly, to Sir John Burchier, uncle to the late Burchier, Earl of Essex, but she never had child. Edward Poynings made part with Burchier and Elizabeth, to have Ostenhanger in Kent, after their death, and entered into it, they living.

In Tower street, between Hart lane and Church lane, was a quadrant called Galley row, because galley men dwelt there. Then have ye two lanes out of Tower street, both called Church lanes, because one runneth down by the east end of St. Dunstan’s church, and the other by the west end of the same; out of the west lane turneth another lane west towards St. Marie Hill, and is called Fowle lane, which is for the most part in Tower street ward.

This church of St. Dunstone is called, in the east, for difference from one other of the same name in the west; it is a fair and large church of an ancient building, and within a large churchyard; it hath a great parish of many rich merchants, and other occupiers of divers trades, namely salters and ironmongers.

The monuments in that church be these:—In the choir, John Kenington, parson, there buried 1374; William Islip, parson, 1382; John Kryoll, esq., brother to Thomas Kryoll, 1400; Nicholas Bond, Thomas Barry, merchant, 1445; Robert Shelly, esq., 1420; Robert Pepper, grocer, 1445; John Norwich, grocer, 1390; Alice Brome, wife to John Coventry, sometime mayor of London, 1433; William Isaack, draper, alderman, 1508; Edward Skales, merchant, 1521; John Ricroft, esq., sergeant of the larder to Henry VII. and Henry VIII., 1532; Edwaters, esq., sergeant-at-arms, 1558; Sir Bartholomew James, draper, mayor 1479, buried under a fair monument with his lady; Ralfe Greenway, grocer, alderman, put under the stone of Robert Pepper, 1559; Thomas Bledlow, one of the sheriffs 1472; James Bacon, fishmonger, sheriff, 1573; Sir Richard Champion, draper, mayor 1568; Henry Herdson, skinner, alderman, 1555; Sir James Garnado, knight; William Hariot, draper, mayor 1481, buried in a fair chapel by him built,[123] 1517; John Tate, son to Sir John Tate, in the same chapel in the north wall; Sir Christopher Draper, ironmonger, mayor 1566, buried 1580. And many other worshipful personages besides, whose monuments are altogether defaced.

Now for the two Church lanes, they meeting on the south side of this church and church yard, do join in one, and running down to the Thames street, the same is called St. Dunstan’s hill, at the lower end whereof the said Thames street towards the west on both sides almost to Belin’s gate, but towards the east up to the water gate, by the bulwark of the Tower, is all of Tower street ward. In this street, on the Thames side, are divers large landing-places called wharfs or keys, for craneage up of wares and merchandise, as also for shipping of wares from thence to be transported. These wharfs and keys commonly bear the names of their owners, and are therefore changeable. I read, in the 26th of Henry VI., that in the parish of St. Dunstone in the east, a tenement, called Passeke’s wharf, and another called Horner’s key, in Thames street, were granted to William Harindon, esq. I read also, that in the 6th of Richard II., John Churchman, grocer, for the quiet of merchants, did newly build a certain house upon the key, called Wool wharf, in the Tower street ward, in the parish of Allhallows Barking, betwixt the tenement of Paule Salisberrie on the east part, and the lane called the water gate on the west, to serve for tronage, or weighing of wools in the port of London; whereupon the king granted that during the life of the said John, the aforesaid tronage should be held and kept in the said house, with easements there for the balances and weights, and a counting place for the customer, controllers, clerks, and other officers of the said tronage, together with ingress and egress to and from the same, even as was had in other places, where the said tronage was wont to be kept, and that the king should pay yearly to the said John during his life forty shillings at the terms of St. Michael and Easter, by even portions, by the hands of his customer, without any other payment to the said John, as in the indenture thereof more at large appeareth.

Near unto this Customer’s key towards the east, is the said water gate, and west from it Porter’s key, then Galley key, where the gallies were used to unlade and land their merchandises and wares; and that part of Thames street was therefore of some called Galley row, but more commonly Petty Wales.

On the north side, as well as on the south of this Thames street, are many fair houses large for stowage, built for mer[124]chants; but towards the east end thereof, namely, over against Galley key, Wool key, and the Custom house, there have been of old time some large buildings of stone, the ruins whereof do yet remain, but the first builders and owners of them are worn out of memory, wherefore the common people affirm Julius Cæsar to be the builder thereof, as also of the Tower itself. But thereof I have spoken already. Some are of another opinion, and that a more likely, that this great stone building was sometime the lodging appointed for the princes of Wales, when they repaired to this city, and that, therefore, the street in that part is called Petty Wales, which name remaineth there most commonly until this day, even as where the kings of Scotland were used to be lodged betwixt Charing cross and White hall, it is likewise called Scotland, and where the earls of Britons were lodged without Aldersgate, the street is called Britain street, etc.

The said building might of old time pertain to the princes of Wales, as is aforesaid, but is since turned to other use.

It is before noted of Galley key, that the galleys of Italie, and other parts, did there discharge their wines and merchandises brought to this city. It is like, therefore, that the merchants and owners procured the place to build upon for their lodgings and storehouses, as the merchants of the Haunce of Almaine were licensed to have a house, called Gilda Teutonicorum, the Guild hall of the Germans. Also the merchants of Burdeaux were licensed to build at the Vintry, strongly with stone, as may be yet seen, and seemeth old, though often repaired; much more cause have these buildings in Petty Wales, though as lately built, and partly of the like stone brought from Caen in Normandie, to seem old, which for many years, to wit, since the galleys left their course of landing there,[136] hath fallen to ruin, and been let out for stabling of horses, to tipplers of beer, and such like; amongst others, one Mother Mampudding (as they termed her) for many years kept this house, or a great part thereof, for victualling; and it seemeth that the builders of the hall of this house were shipwrights, and not house carpenters; for the frame thereof (being but low) is raised of certain principal posts of main timber, fixed deep in the ground, without any groundsell, boarded close round about on the inside, having none other wall from the ground to the roof, those boards not exceeding the length of a clap board, about an inch thick, every board ledging over other as in a ship or galley, nailed with ship nails called rough and clench, to wit, rough nails with broad[125] round heads, and clenched on the other side with square plates of iron. The roof of this hall is also wrought of the like board, and nailed with rough and clench, and seemeth as it were a galley, the keel turned upwards; and I observed that no worm or rottenness is seen to have entered either board or timber of that hall, and therefore, in mine opinion, of no great antiquity.[137]

I read, in 44th of Edward III., that a hospital in the parish of Barking church was founded by Robert Denton, chaplain, for the sustentation of poor priests, and other both men and women, that were sick of the frenzy, there to remain till they were perfectly whole, and restored to good memory. Also I read, that in the 6th of Henry V. there was in the Tower ward a messuage, or great house, called Cobham’s inn; and in the 37th of Henry VI, a messuage in Thames street pertaining to Richard Longvile, etc. Some of the ruins before spoken of may seem to be of the foresaid hospital, belonging peradventure to some prior alien, and so suppressed among the rest in the reign of Edward III. or Henry V., who suppressed them all. Thus much for the bounds and antiquities of this ward, wherein is noted the Tower of London, three parish churches, the custom house, and two halls of companies, to wit, the clothworkers and the bakers. This ward hath an alderman, his deputy, common councillors eight, constables thirteen, scavengers twelve, wardmote men thirteen, and a beadle; it is taxed to the fifteenth at six and twenty pounds.[138]