Love Lost and Found in the Church Courts

by Peter Wilkinson

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In (2) 7. That Margaret told her that when she and Richard were stayed at Lewes by the officer, that then and there Richard and William Hoskin entreated her to speak to her father to be good unto them for else they might come to further trouble.

In (2) 8. That about the twelfth day last was twelvemonth, Richard, as Margaret told unto her, caused her by cunning dealing to go with him from her father's house, and one Joan Boys, one of the maidservants of Thomasine Osborne being with her, Richard caused Joan to go into her master's house. Which done he presently stopped the mouth of Margaret because she would not cry out, and carried her a good way distant from her father's house by violence, and there did draw his dagger, and threatened her that except she would consent to be his wife he would make an end of himself presently.


8 Deposition of William Hoskin.[1] Read over 3 February 1602/3.

Of West Wittering, yeoman; born there; aged about 27. He is worth £20. Signature.

To the Libel [L1-6]

L1-3. That concerning any contract of marriage betwixt them he cannot depose, saving that Richard Tayler himself hath told and sworn unto him that they were contracted together as man and wife. And William Hoskin saith that he knoweth that Richard did give unto Margaret Osborne a pair of gloves and a pair of knives as tokens betwixt him and her.

To the Additional Positions. [AP1-12]

AP 4. That, about a fortnight before midsummer last was two years, Richard requested him that he would ride a little way with him and he told him he would. Then Richard appointed him to come unto him at the gate of George Osborne about nine or ten of the clock in the evening of the same day; which he did accordingly where he found Richard and Margaret together. And when he came unto them, being on horseback, Richard set Margaret on horseback behind him; then he ridd with her and Richard first to Newick,[2] where Richard met with a horse for himself. And he, Margaret and Richard rid all together to Arundel, and from Arundel to Ferring to one widow Waterfield's, and from thence to one Peter's house near unto Shoreham ferries, and from thence to Hurst to one Whitepaine's house there, and there remained some three of four hours. And Richard both there and at many other places did confess and acknowledge that he and she were man and wife before divers credible witnesses.

AP 7. That he being without doors at the house of Whitepaine, Richard went into the house and fetched a measure of the finger of Margaret for to make a wedding ring for her, which William should have provided at church. But he not going forward of his journey, returned back again without it. And further he saith that Richard provided for her at Chichester a gowncloth, a changeable taffeta apron, holland to make her a smock, a band and gorgett, and a scarf and brought them to Hurst and then carried them and gowncloth to Lewes to be made; which she did wear and ridd back again in the same gown to her father's house.

AP 11. Does not know, saving that he coming into a room of a young man's house, whose name he remembereth not, near unto the house of Whitepaine found Richard and Margaret lying upon a bed together upon one day which was while they remained at Hurst, he being all unbraced and she looking with a very high colour. Whereupon he said, 'Sister have you lost your maidenhead?'; unto which speeches she made no answer.

[1] EpI/11/9 f. 169v

[2] Newark Farm in West Wittering.

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