1608, William Mosse or Morse asks for favour as a royal tenant

Transcriptions of Petitions

Report of Celia Jones

These two petitions have proved difficult to follow up. William Mosse/Morse was evidently a poor man. I am not able to find a definite burial record for him. Possibly his reference to a candle cottage implies that he made candles and in this case they would probably have been rush tapers, as chandlers would presumably have required some sort of premises to render the tallow. The lease he refers to would have been drawn up circa 1585. Cirencester had become a royal manor following the Dissolution, but there is nothing I can find in the Victoria County History about that period.  A fee farm was a form of freehold lease whereby rent was paid to the landlord.[1] There is record of a will for Philip Breach,[2] who was buried in the neighbouring parish of Siddington St Mary, but sadly I am unable to decipher it, nevertheless its existence would suggest that Breach was at the least of ‘the middling sort’. I found nothing for Stoughton.

It would seem that Salisbury had stated the case accurately, and if Mosse/Morse had a legal tenancy he was safe even if he was ‘no more the King’s tenant’, but if not then, sadly not.


[1] ‘Fee Farm’, The Law Dictionary.

[2] PB Gentleman, of Suddington Marye, Co. Glos. 44 Dale [Siddington, just south of Cirencester], 9/05/1621, ref: England, Canterbury. Wills proved in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury 1620-29. TNA, Prerogative Court of Canterbury and Related Probate Jurisdictions: Will Registers; Class: PROB 11; Piece: 137.


This report is part of a series on ‘Petitioners in the reigns of Elizabeth I and James I, 1600-1625’, created through a U3A Shared Learning Project on ‘Investigating the Lives of Seventeenth-Century Petitioners’.