The Stonor letters and papers, 1290-1483; ed. for the Royal historical society, from the origial documents in the Public record office, by Charles Lethbridge Kingsford.
Kingsford, Charles Lethbridge, editor. 1862-1926.


In his next letter Bryan gives the report of Betson's illness for Thursday, 30th Sept., and Friday, 1st October; this letter was therefore probably written on 29th Sept. Betson's uncle is perhaps Sir William Stocker, whose wife was sister to Lady Stonor. Mistress Jane is probably Jane Ryche, the younger sister of Betson's wife. Humphrey Starkey was Recorder of London Page  87, vol. 2 1471-83 (Dict. Nat. Biog., liv, 108). Robert Tate was sheriff in 1481-82, and mayor in 1488-89. For Richard Page see Nos. 220 and 247, and for Fenn and Fyncham see vol. i, p. xxix. The amount of money is large but compare the list of obligations due by Betson in No. 264. From A.C., xlvi, 142.

Sir, according to the commaundement of your mastership we were at Stebenhith by ix of the Clok: at suche tyme as we come thider we sawe the gentilman forthwith. And in gode feith he made us gode chere as a sike man might by countenaunce notwithstonding: for in gode feith we sawe by his demenour that he might not prospere in this world: ffor mastres Bevice and oþer Gentilwomen, and his Uncle were of the same oppynyon. And we desired and praide him to be of gode comfort and so comfortid him as hertely as we coude in your name and in my ladies. And so we departid from the Chambre downe into the halle: and he felle into a grete slombering, and was besily movid in his spirites. And at a xj of the Clok I*. [Bryan first wrote "he".] callid his Uncle out of his bedde into the gentilman's Chambre, and I asked his advice and my maystresse his wyf of the stok and of the demenure therof for the yere and the half that is last past. And as touching the stok he confessid that it was xj.c li. iij.xx li. Wherin at the sight of your acquietaunce in discharging of him and alle his doers that shalbe be hinde him the seid stok shalbe redy. And as for the occupacion of it, as he will answere betwene god and devell, the boke that he bought it by ye shalbe prive therto: and the boke that he sold by ye shalbe also prive to: which ij bokes shalbe his Juges, which remayne in the keping of my mastresse his wifes handes under lok and key, and other billes and obligacions accordyng, concernyng the suerte for divers paiementes to be made by divers merchauntes, as the seid Gentilman seith. Forther|more, as touching to John Fennys prentice alle thing is according in suerte, which shalbe delivered into the handes of Laurence Fyncham and oþer of the same company. I have sent James to Page, and I trust to God he wilbe here this day by none. And as for the plate my maystresse Jane and I have caused it to be taken up and set in suerte, save that that must nedes be occupied. And as touching the bille that ye have of his awne hande of the sume of iiijxx. li., I praie you send it me by the bringer of this letter; and as for my lady money which ye geve by instruccion shulde be iiijxx. li., I pray you shewe it me by writing how that I may appose it ferther, for as yet I can have no Page  88, vol. 2 answere of hers ne yours. I trust to Jhesu he shall endure till þe messenger come ayene: lenger the ffysicians have not determyned. The executours be thre persones, my maystresse his wyf, Humfrey Starky, Recorder of London, Robert Tate, merchaunt of Caleys: not|withstanding I moved him betwene him and me and mastres Jane that he shuld breke this testament, and make my mastresse his wyf sole executrice. What wilbe do þerin, as yet I can not speke, but I shall do as I can with Goddes grace, who have you in his kepyng. Written at London, this present daie at viij of the Clok.

By yow owne Ric. Bryan.

To my most worshipfull and singuler gode master Sir William Stonour, knyght.