|Sports and Exercises. Punishments. ||257
Scotland, for the rescue of the Town of Haddington, and others, kept by the
Englishmen since the Maiors Time.
This Watch affording a great Cavalcade and splendid Show, brought Abundance of
Degrees of People together, and not a few of the lighter Sort; such as Rogues,
Pickpurses, Quarrellers, Whoremongers and Drunkards. Which was found to have
much Inconvenience. Therefore in the Year 1569, Sir Thomas Row Maior, with the
universal Consent of the Aldermen, agreed to lay it aside, for that Year at
least: and in
the Room thereof to have a substanrial Standing Watch for the Safety and
of the City. And that chiefly as was pretended, to prevent the dispersing of
into the Country; which might happen, if some of those Companies that should
out thence, should gather Infection in the City, that at this Time was not free
of it: and
likewise increase it in the City. And the Armourers (who got Money by these
Watches) should have no reason to complain, since they had very lately a good
and were well set on Work by the Musters but a little before performed. The
himself also being at this Time so weak that he could not go in his own Person:
Recorder acquainted the Queen and Council with this Resolution. But it was
back that the Queen disliked it, and that it was her Pleasure to have a going
Whereupon the Maior sent the Recorder to Sir William Cecyll the Secretary.
desiring his Interest with the Lords, that this Order might at least that Year
upon the weighty Reasons aforsaid. And from henceforth it began to be laid
Endeavour to supersede this Watch, An. 1569.
The like marching Watch in this City hath not been used, though some Attempts
been made thereunto, as in the Year 1585. a Book was drawn by a grave Citizen,
by him dedicated to Sir Tho. Pullison, then Lord Maior, and his Brethren the
Aldermen, containing the Manner and Order of a marching Watch in the City upon
Evens accustomed; in commendations whereof, namely, in Times of Peace to be
he hath Words to this Effect:
The Artificers of sundry Sorts were thereby well set awork, none but Rich Men
charged, Poor Men helped, old Soldiers, Trumpeters, Drummers, Fifes, and Ensign-
bearers, with such like Men, meet for the Princes Service, kept in ure, wherein
safety and defence of every Common-weal consisteth. Armour and Weapons being
Yearly occupied in this wise, the Citizens had of their own readily prepared for
need; whereas by intermission hereof, Armorers are out of Work, Soldiers out of
Weapons overgrown with foulness, few or none good being provided, &c. But
return to the Sports.
Commodities of the Watch at Midsummer in the Time of Peace.
In the Month of August, about the Feast of Saint Bartholomew the Apostle, before
Lord Maior, Aldermen, and Sheriffs of London, placed in a large Tent near unto
Clarkenwell, of old Time were divers Days spent in the Pastime of wrestling;
Officers of the City, namely the Sheriffs, Serjeants, and Yeomen, the Porters of
Kings Beam, or Weigh House, (now no such Men) and other of the City, were
Challengers of all Men in the Suburbs, to wrestle for Games appointed. And on
Days, before the said Maior, Aldermen and Sheriffs, in Fensbury field, to shoot
Standard, broad Arrow and flight, for Games. But now of late Years, the
only practised on Bartholomew Day in the Afternoon; and the shooting some three
four Days after, in one Afternoon, and no more. What should I speak of the
daily Exercises in the long Bow by Citizens of this City, now almost cleanly
left off and
forsaken? I over pass it. For
by the Means of closing in of Common Grounds, our Archers, for want of Room to
shoot abroad, creep into Bowling Alleys, and ordinary Dicing Houses, near Home:
where they have Room enough to hazard their Money at unlawful Games; where I
them to take their Pleasures.
Wrestling at Skinners Well, near unto Clerks Well before the Maior.
Shooting the Standard, broad Arrow and flight, before the Maior.
Shooting in the long Bow suppressed.
Bowling Alleys erected and frequented.
This was one of the great Uses of publick Houses in former Time, namely, for
and Exercise rather than for drinking excessively. For Plenty of Alehouses and
Taverns in London was no strange thing even in King Harries Days; as appears
facetious Passage in an Old Brook printed 1536. called A remedy for Sedition.
the Author hath this pretty Conceit, in reference to the Multitude of these
"I make this offer to you, Blindfold me, and after carry me to what
you will, I will little fail to tell you where you set me, and before whose
that know not my Cunning will scarce believe me. I pray you, can you set me in
Place, but I may say, and ly little, I am now before a Tavern, or an Alehouse.
may, but far I cannot fail."
But now of a long while the Pleasure and
these Houses is chiefly Fuddling, and devouring vast Quantities of Wine and Ale,
Stout and Brandy.]
Taverns and Alehouses plenty in ancient Time.
Now a Days the Recreations of the Citizens, besides Drinking, are Cockfighting,
Bowling Greens, Tables, Cards, Dice, Billiard Tables, Musick Entertainments,
Dancing, Masks, Balls, Stage Plays, Club Meetings in Evenings, Riding out on
Horseback, Hunting with my Lord Maiors Pack of Dogs, when the Common Hunt
(one of the Maiors Officers) goes out: the Citizens having Privilege by their
hunt in Middlesex, Hertfordshire, in the Chilterns and in Kent as far as Gray
The more common sort divert themselves at Foot ball, Wrestling, Cudgels,
Shovelboard, Cricket, Stowball, Ringing of Bells, Quoits, pitching the Bar, Bull
Bear baiting, throwing at Cocks, and lying at Alehouses.]
The modern Sports.
To the customary Sports used in the City, we may subjoyn some of their customary
Punishments in former Times, of Shame or Pain, or both, for divers Sorts of
and Misdeameanours: Such were Pillorizing, Carting, Riding, Whipping. I will
some of these Criminals, and their Punishments, as I find inflicted upon them in
In the Year 1560. were set on the Pillory at Westminster Hall one Mr. Church, a
of Peace, and his Man: Because he did not justly execute his Office: and for
of the Privy Council.
A Justice set on the Pillory.
A Day or two after, a Skinner of Southwark, was set on the Pillory: with a Paper
his Head; shewing the Cause, viz. for Sundry Practices of great Falshood, and
Untruth. And all set forth under the Colour of Southsaying.
In the Year 1563. A Woman, that kept a Tavern at the sign of the Rose at St.
Katharines, beyond the Tower, for having Flesh in her House in Lent, and that
raw and roasted, was set on the Pillory, for disobeying the Command for keeping
And four Women who partook thereof, were set in the Stocks all Night, till their
Husbands came to fetch them Home.
Pillory for Flesh in Lent.
This was in pursuance of a Proclamation by the Queen and Council, March 1st.
that no Men, nor Keepers of Tables should cause to be eaten any Flesh in Lent,
other Time in the Year that was commanded to be so observed by the Church. Nor
Butchers to kill Flesh. But for Breach thereof to pay a great Fine; or else
Hours on the Pillory, and suffer Imprisonment Ten Days.
Proclamation for Lent.