After the Death of this Sweyne, his Son Canutus (afterward King of England) besieged London, both by Land and by Water: But after much Labour, finding it impregnable, he departed: And in the same Year repairing his Forces, he girded it with a new Siege, in the which the Citizens so defended themsleves, and offended him, that in the End he went away with Shame.

In the Dissension that arose between King Edward the Confessor, and his Father in Law Earl Goodwin (which was the mightiest Subject within this Land that ever I read of): The Earl, with a great Army came to London, and was, for all that, by the Countenance of the Citizens resisted, till such Time as the Nobility made Reconciliation between them. About seventy Years after the Conquest, Maud, the Empress, made War upon King Stephen for the Right of the Crown, and had taken his Person Prisoner, but by the Strength and Assistance of the Londoners and Kentishmen, Maude was put to flight at Winchester, and her Brother Robert, then Earl of Gloucester, was taken, in Exchange for whom King Stephen was delivered: I dispute not whose Right was better, but I avouch the Service, seeing Stephen was in Possession.

The History of William Walworth the Maior of London, is well known. By whose Manhood and Policy, the Person of Richard the Second was rescued, the City saved, Wat Tyler killed, and all his Stragglers discomfited. In Memory and Reward of which Service, the City had a Dagger added to their Shield of Armes; and the Maiors have been most commonly sithence knighted.

After the common Opinion of Men of late Times. This was Stow's Note, that was of another Opinion.

Jack Cade also having discomfited the King's Army, that was sent against him, came to London, and was here manfully and with long Fight resisted, until that, by the good Policy of the Citizens, his Company was dispersed.

Finally, in the tenth Year of the Reign of King Edward the Fourth, and not many Days before the Death of Henry the Sixth, Tho. Nevill, commonly called The Bastard of Fauconbridge, armed a great Company against the King, and being denied Passage through London, he assaulted it on divers Parts: But he was repulsed by the Citizens, and chased as far as Stratford, with the Loss of a great many.

Thus much of certain their principal and personal Services, in War only; for it were infinite to repeat the particular Aids of Men and Money which London hath ministred: And I had rather to leave it to be conjectured at, by Comparison to be made between it and other Cities, whereof I will give you this one Note for Example. In the twelfth Year of the Reign of King Edward the Second, it was ordered by Parliament, that every City of the Realm should make out Souldiers against the Scots: At which Time London was appointed to send two hundred Men, and Canterbury being then one of our best Cities, forty, and no more. And this Proportion of five to one is now in our Age encreased, at the least five to one, both in Soldiers and Subsidy. As for the other Services that London hath done in Times of Peace, they are to be measured by Consideration of the Commodities, whereof I will speak anon. In the mean Season, let the Estate and Government of this City be considered, to the End that it may appear that it standeth well with the Policy of the Realm.

Aids granted by London.

Cæsar in his Commentaries is Witness, that in his Time the Cities of Britain had large Territories annexed unto them, and were several Estates of themselves, governed by particular Kings or Potentates, as in Italy and Germany yet be; and that Mandubratius was King of the Trinobants, whose chief City London is taken to have been. And I find not that this Government was altered, either by Cæsar, or his Successors, notwithstanding that the Country became to be tributary unto them: But that it continued, until at length the Britains themselves reduced all their Peoples into one Monarchy: Howbeit that lasted not any long Season; for upon Vortiger their King, came the Saxons our Ancestors, and they drave the Britains into Wales, Cornwall, and Britain in France; and in Process of War divided the Country amongst themselves into an Heptarchy, or seven Kingdoms, of the which one was called the Kingdom of the East Saxons; which having, in Manner, the same Limits that the Bishoprick of London now enjoyeth, contained Essex, Middlesex, and a Part of Hertfordshire, and so included London. Again, it appeareth, that in Course of Time, and about 800 Years after Christ, Egbert, (then King of the West Saxons) Ut pisces sæpe minutos magnus comest, i.e. As the great often eateth up the little Fish, overcame the rest of the Kings, and once more erected a Monarchy, the which, till the coming in of the Normanes, and from thence even hitherto, hath continued.

The Government of the City.

Now I doubt not (whatsoever London was in the Time of Cæsar) but that under the Heptarchy and Monarchy it hath been a Subject, and no free City, though happily endowed with some large Privileges. For King William the Conqueror found a Portreve there, whose Name was Godfrey, (by which Name he greeteth him in his Saxon Charter) and his Office was none other than the Charge of a Bailiff, or Reeve, as by the self same Name continuing yet in Gravesend, and certain other Places, may well appear. But the Frenchmen using their own Language, called him sometime a Provost, and sometime a Bailiff; whatsoever his Name and Office were, he was Perpetuus Magistratus, i.e. a perpetual Magsitrate, given by the Prince, and not chosen by the Citizens, as it seemeth. For what Time King Richard the First needed Money towards his Expedition in the Holy Land, they first purchased of him the Liberty to choose yearly from amongst themselves two Bailiffs: And King John, his Successor, at their like Suit, changed their Bailiffs into a Maior, and two Sheriffs. To these Henry the Third added Aldermen; at the first eligible yearly, but afterward by King Edward the Third made perpetual Magistrates, and Justices of the Peace within their Wards, in which Plight of Government it presently standeth. This shortly, as I could, is the historical and outward Estate of London: Now come I to the inward Pith and Substance.

A Portreve in London in K. William the Conqueror's Days.

The chief Magistrate called afterward Provost.

Two Bailiffs.

Then a Maior.



The Estate of this City is to be examined by the Quantity, and by the Quality.

The State of the City.

The Quantity therefore consisteth in the Number of the Citizens, which is very great, and far exceedeth the Proportion of Hippodamus, which appointed 10000; and of others which have set down other Numbers, as mete Stints, in their Opinions, to be well governed. But yet seeing both Reason and Experience have freed us from the Law of any definite Number, so that other Things be observed, let that be admitted. Neither is London, I fear me, so great as populous; for well saith one, Non idem est magna Civitas & frequens: Magna est enim quæ multos habet qui arma ferre possunt; i.e. A great and populous City is not all one; for that is great which hath many to bear Arms. Whatsoever the Number be, it breedeth no Fear of Sedition; for as much as the same consisteth not in the Extremes, but in a very Mediocrity of Wealth and Riches, as it shall better appear anon. And if the Causes of English Rebellions be searched out, they shall be found,

The Number of Citizens.