Love Lost and Found in the Church Courts

by Peter Wilkinson

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and William Hoskin did by cunning and a trayne[1] carry her from her father's house only in her petticoat and a pair of sleeves and wanting[2] other her necessaries fit for her. And after, Richard has caused her petticoat to be sent to Ferring so that of necessity she was to wear such other things as he had provided for her, all which things mentioned he received again save only the holland[3] and the 6d. Which holland he would not receive in regard he had spent some 6s or 7s of the money of Margaret's. For the rest does not believe anything in the article to be true.

AP8-10. Does not believe anything in the articles to be true, saving that she, George Osborne and Richard Tayler came riding home together from Lewes.

AP11. That since Richard Tayler was a suitor in way of marriage she received of him one pair of gloves, a pair of knives, but not as any confirmation of any promise of marriage for she never made him any other promise of marriage than if her parents would consent thereunto. Neither will she ever marry with him now while she liveth. For the rest does not believe anything in the article to be true.

AP12. She believes what is to be believed and denies what is to be denied.


3 Deposition of Richard Bishoppe.[4] Read over 28 January 1602/3.

Of Portsmouth, Hants, where lived for 9 months; before at Lewes for 20 years; before at Battle; born there; aged about 47 years. Cannot value his estate because he has many debts owing to him and some debts he owes to others. Signature.

To the Libel [L1-6]

L1, 2. That in Somer [sic] last past was two years, he then dwelling at Lewes and bearing the office of constable making search upon one Sunday in time of divine service for such persons as were at any inn or alehouse drinking or otherwise absenting themselves from church, he found Richard Tayler and Margaret Osborne in the evening prayer time together in a chamber of the house of John Langridge who kept an inn, themselves alone. And he seeing Richard to be a young man and Margaret a young woman did examine them whence they came and what they made there in the service time, which done Richard answered that they were man and wife and that they were come to Lewes to be married because the father of Margaret would not consent that they should be married; and that they intended to be married the next day and Margaret did likewise answer. Whereupon Richard Bishoppe fearing lest Margaret should be a ward caused a letter to be written to George Osborne the father to the end he might understand of the same before Richard and Margaret were married, and sett [sic] a messenger of purpose and caused Richard to pay unto the messenger 5s. And then and there he caused Margaret to go home with him and caused Richard to lie in the town of Lewes till he did hear from George Osborne. And he further examining Margaret and Richard whether she had the goodwill of her father and mother that they should be married, they both answered that she had her mother's consent and they hoped to have her father's in time; and she did further declare unto him and divers others whose names are specified that she and Richard was [sic] contracted together and that she would never forsake him and that she did propose, God willing, to solemnise matrimony with him the next day or next day following but one. All which speeches were spoken by them at the house of Langridge in the presence of Edward Newton, Thomas Dorrington, the wife of [blank] Langridge, all of Lewes and Richard Bishoppe …. And he further saith that he taking Margaret with him to his own house and commanding Richard to stay in the town till the return of the

[1] Trick.

[2] Difficult reading.

[3] Fine linen, often imported from the Netherlands.

[4] EpI/11/9 f. 160r

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