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Star Chamber (PRO STAC5/H57/10 Roger Harlakenden v Robt and Simon Ives)

7.10.29Eliz1 (Saturday 7 October 1587)

document 19000419

answer of Fynett wife of Robt Ive one of the defendants in the bill of complaint of Robt Harlakenden esq complainant says that the complaint is devised by the malicious minds of the complainant and Robt Reade and Kelton etc to weary and impoverish them by his dilatory proceedings and other his cunning and subtle practices the complainant exhibited this bill before this court in easter term last whereas he might have served the defendant to appear the same term as he did Robt Ive and Eliachim Ive two of the defendants he served this defendant and Simon Ive one other defendant in trinity term last past so that she being 70yr and impotent was forced to sue forth a protestation at her own costs and charges for to take his answer in the country returnable this present term of michaelmas and further the complainant having a malicious corrupted mind as it seemeth without a fear of god at a leet held for the manor of Earls Colne 16.7.last whereof the complainant is lord as she has credibly heard procured the then steward especially to give in charge to the jury then and there empanelled to present the supposed riot thinking thereby as it seems to her to have given credit to this his unjust suit some of the jury being honestly minded and of a good conscience and as it seems knowing the contrary of their own knowledge would not do yet nevertheless she for as much as does concern her for answer says that the truth is that Thos Bareffotte Thos Luther Antho Luther possessed of the park and of the woods underwoods and timber trees growing within and upon it except two hundred timber trees five hundred bowlings and one thousand five hundred ashes maples and limes as by the other defendants in their answers is truly declared by their deed indented dated in the bill specified for good considerations did devise grant and farm let to Jn Bragge all the Lodge situate in the park with 380a of land and pasture parcel of Colne Park lying and being in the pales and enclosures thereof and near adjoining to the lodge late in the manurance or occupation of one Jn Potter now deceased or assigns except and reserved out of the said demise and grant all manner of timber trees standing and fallen or which afterwards should be fallen upon the said premises and the wood and timber thereof coming with free ingress egress and regress into and out of the premises and every part thereof to Thos Thos and Antho their executors etc and their workmen for the felling hewing breaking and sawing cutting squaring carriage and recarriage as well as any of the said trees wood timber and every part thereof as also the carrying and conveying of brick and tiles made within any part of the enclosed ground or park at all and every time at their pleasure together with free liberty to make and dig such and so many sawpits for the sawing of the trees or any part as to them shall be thought needful and to have all the acres except the ones before excepted unto Jn Bragge his executors and assigns from the last day 30.9.next to the last date of the last certified indenture of demise to the full end of eleven years next ensuing Jn Bragge by his indenture did covenant and grant for him and his executors to and with Thos Thos and Antho that he Jn Bragge shall quietly and peacefully from time to time during the said term of eleven years suffer and permit Thos Thos and Antho to enter cut and carry etc likewise Thos Thos and Antho did covenant and grant to and with Jn Bragg that they should do their best endeavour that the timber lops and tops of the timber trees do not remain and lie upon the ground demised to Jn Bragg after it be felled above the space of one whole year after the felling and that the sawpits that the workmen of Thos Thos and Antho shall make shall filled up again at a convenient time after the making of the pits and also that the corn of Jn Bragg be not hurt or spoiled by the felling or carriage of the trees which estate and whole term and interest of Jn Bragg he assigned over to Robt Ive as by the complainant is alleged by force whereof he entered and was lawfully possessed further the defendant says that she thinks that Thos Bartfoot Thos Luther and Antho Luther did bargain and sell to the complainant all the timber trees which they had bought of the earl and further that he hath ditched up a certain way in the park in which way they were wont to pass with their wood and timber and likewise she says that there are two sufficient and convenient ways which are used for the complainant and assigns his and their servants labourers and workmen to carry their wood and timber of and from a certain close called the Great Westye parcel of the aforementioned 380a where the wood and timber which Kelton and Reed did send their servants and labourers to fetch and carry away as in the bill did then lie but the complainant having ditched up the way in which they were wont to pass with their wood and timber did mean as it seems to her and as it may appear by the sequel thereof with force to lay out a way through the cornfields and other the grounds of Robt Ive one of the defendants she heard say that the complainant and Reade and Kelton and divers others would come and beat down a gate standing between a certain close the Little Westye and a field sown with wheat and mislen adjacent to the said close and would carry with carts through the cornfield their wood and timber being in the close called the Great Westye all which closes are parcel of the 380a demised and affirmed as aforesaid to Robt Ive husband of this defendant which she is fully resolved they might not lawfully do for there were two other sufficient and convenient ways for them to carry the timber and wood off and from the close Great Westye and also it was contrary to the covenant before rehearsed after which that is to say the same day wherein it is supposed by the complainant the riot to be committed by this defendant Eliachim Ive one of the defendants being at the plough in a fallow field parcel of the 380a land and pasture Robt Reade named in the bill came to Eliachim Ive charging him to open the said gate leading into the cornfield who answered he would not neither should they come that way through the cornfield seeing there were two other sufficient and convenient ways for them and Read answered very stoutly that if he would not open it they would beat it down or words to that effect and so went his way Eliachim Ive came home and told what Read had said and thereupon she knowing that Robt Ive and Simon Ive two other of the defendants were gone to the gate to withstand Reed and such others as should come with them to beat down the gate as she thinks they might lawfully do she a good distance after came to the gate without any weapons being of the age of 70yr and impotent after which came Reed one Waller and one other whose name she knows not with a cart laden with wood and timber to the gate where they might have gone either of the two ways before reserved having laid up in the cart as she now remembers a pikestaff a pitchfork and an axe meaning as it seems to her with force to beat down the gate and to go over the corn and other the ground of Robt Ive her husband at their pleasure against his will and by chance as she verily thinks there was present one mr Wordsworth servant to the right honourable Xoph Hatton knight lord chancellor of England and Read being come to the gate commanded to open the gate which Robt Ive her husband gently denied whereupon Read seemed to encourage those that were with him to take down the weapons from the cart saying "come let us stand to our tacklings" or such like words afterwards better considering the matter he did not and Reed and Robt Ive quietly talked of the matter without any manner of blows either stricken or offered on either part in the end mr Wordsworth requested Robt Ive her husband that he would suffer them to pass that time seeing that the cart was come thither to the gate and Robt Ive sent one of them that came with the cart for the key to open the gate home to his house at the request of mr Wordsworth then the gate being opened they passed quietly without any such assaulting beating and wounding as in the bill is falsely surmised without that this defendant did unlawfully contrary to the statute of the realm and the peace of her majesty unlawfully forcibly and in warlike manner come unto the labourers workmen and carriers of the timber and wood and then and there with force of arms riotously and unlawfully did assault and evil entreat the servants workmen and carriers and rescue the carriages and the timber and wood and then and there assault bear down and evil entreat and sore hurt and Robt Read as in the bill is most falsely and slanderously alleged and without that the said Robt Read and other the carriers of the wood and timber passed without much ado with danger of their lives being assaulted hurt and evil entreated by her as the complainant in the bill has untruly surmised and without that any other matter in the bill mentioned etc is true asks to be dismissed with costs