Agreements between the Caryque and Huckvale Families - 1584
Mundane matters prevented me from getting articles out for the last couple of issues. However, in the mean time one exciting thing did happen. Whilst I didn’t reach the storied heights of my friend, fellow-Flintheathian and skilled writer Lady Rebecca, I can now describe the Writ and Record as a Master William Blackfox Award Nominee, which is still pretty cool.
To make up for the previous missing articles I’m going to cover two related documents this time, both related to the marriage settlement in my previous article. The delay has had one advantage however, in that it gave me time to secure permission from the Oxford Family History Centre to include photographic copies of the originals of the relevant Huckvale Papers in my Baelfyr articles. So this time you get to see the originals too (and get to pull me up on any mistakes).
Both agreements date from November 1584 and involve members of the Caryque (Carrick) family along with John Huckvale and his son Cuthbert. The first is a Final Concord from Richard Caryque which survives in two copies, in essence identical, although they differ in the words per line and a small number of abbreviations. The second is a Bond from Henry Caryque. I haven’t investigated the Caryque family, but it would seem likely as a first assumption that Richard and Henry were brothers. The Caryques would also have been cousins of a distant sort as John’s grandfather, Robert Huckvale, was married to Elinor sister of an earlier Richard Carricke.
The Final Concord, the older agreement by two days and entirely in Latin, whilst couched in terms of gifts, is the sale of a substantial agricultural holding to the Huckvales for the sum of 130 silver marks (£86⅔), a mark being worth two thirds of a pound or 13s 4d. A pound (or livre) was not a physical amount of money as we know it, but appeared only in accounting. According to the National Archives this equates to about £17,730 in 2017, and was equivalent to about 10 horses or 46 cows. This seems like a low price for 280 acres of land along with four properties. Indeed it sounds like a good sized farm with the accommodation for four labourers and their families, much the same size as the one on which I grew up. At today’s prices, that would buy somewhere between 1 and 1½ acres in the same county of Oxfordshire. Very cheap!
However, the National Archives also says that the price was equivalent to nearly 5 years of wages for a skilled tradesman. This would equate to a salary of about £3,730. Skilled trades have changed over the centuries, but a 2017 survey placed the median wage of electricians and plumbers at about £30,000, which conveniently is about ten times higher than in 1580. So what would have cost nearly five years of pay at the time, would now cost about half a year today at an equivalent price, although in modern terms £150,000 would buy about 10 acres. It would seem that even though wages were much lower, so was the relative value of land and property, at least if we assume that the sale was at a fair market price. It’s also worth bearing in mind that the Cotswolds and environs are one of the most expensive places to buy any kind of proper currently.
The second agreement is a bond, with a Latin header section followed by a larger section in English. and in modern terms is a sub-let. Henry Caryque held the messuages and land under copyhold for the term of his life, and for £100 turned over this right to the Huckvales, but still only for the term of his life. I don’t know how old Henry was at this time, but this was clearly something of a gamble. Henry could have keeled over rapidly instead of living a long life. It was common for such copyhold agreements to cover the natural lives of three named, related people, often covering two generations. It is quite possible that Henry was the disinterested last survivor of such a threesome, but the original agreement would need to be checked to be sure.
Unfortunately, the bond doesn’t specify exactly what was leased, presumably judging the reference to the original copyhold to be sufficient. IT does however sound on the same scale as the previous document, although without further research it is not possible to say whether larger or smaller. What is notable, however, is that the Huckvales were willing to pay more for this time limited grant than they did for the outright purchase of land above. It may be that being in possession and using the land (Henry was apparently resident in Middlesex) put them in a good position to secure the copyhold when Henry died.
Given that the agreements are dated within two days of each other, it seems unlikely that they were arrived at independently. Perhaps there was some advantage to biasing the payments towards one. The relative value of land and between different types of agreement is certainly something I need to investigate further, as two examples give rise to plentiful speculation, but no real conclusion.
My Latin is somewhat munitions grade, not unlike many of the writers of the time, so I may well have mangled my ending where I have expanded abbreviations. Please do let me know if you spot any errors. As usual the transcriptions are also available on WikiTree: https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Space:Final%20Concord%20-%20Richard%20Caryque%20to%20John%20&%20Cuthbert%20Huckvale%20-%201584%20-%20Oxfordshire%20P20/1D/6-7 (which contains a transcription of both copies of the concord) and https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Space:Bond%20-%20Henry%20Caryque%20to%20John%20&%20Cuthbert%20Huckvale%20-%201584%20-%20Oxfordshire%20P20/1D/8
P20/1D/6 – The Final Concord
Hec est finalis concordia fa[c]t[a] in Cur[ia] D[omi]ne Regine Apud Westm[onasterium] in crastino s[an]c[t]i martini Anno regnor[um] Elizabeth[e] dei gra[cia] Angl[ie] ffranc[ie] & Hib[er]ine Regine fidei defens[oris] &c A conqu[esto] vicesimo sexto coram Edmundo Anderson Thoma Meade ffrancisco Wyndam & Will[iam]o Peryam justic[iariis] & Aliis d[omi]ne Regine fidelib[us] tunc ibi p[re]sentib[us] Int[er] Joh[ann]em Huckvale Gen[er]osum & Cuthbertum Huckvale Gen[er]osum quer[entes] et Ric[ardu]m Caryque Gen[er]osum deforc[ientem] de quatuor mesuagijs quatuor horreis quatuor gardinis quatuor pomarijs centum acris t[er]re sexaginta acris prati sexaginta acr[is] pastur[is] duab[us] acris bosci & sexaginta acris iampnor[um] et bruere cum p[er]tin[enciis] in Overnorton & Chipping Norton unde pl[ac]itu[m] conuenc[i]o[n]is sum[monitum] fuit int[er] eos in eadem cur[ia] Scil[ice]t q[uo]d p[re]d[i]c[t]us Ric[ardu]m recogn[ovit] p[re]d[i]c[t]a ten[ementa] cum p[er]tin[enciis] esse ius ip[s]ius Cut[h]b[er]ti ut ill[ud] que ijdem Cut[h]b[er]tus & Joh[ann]es h[abur]e[ru]nt dedono p[re]d[i]c[t]i Ric[ard]i et ill[ud] remisit & quiet[um]clam[avit] de se & hered[ibus] eius p[re]d[i]c[t]is Joh[ann]i & Cut[h]b[er]to & hered[ibus] ip[s]ius Cut[h]b[er]ti Imp[er]p[etuu]m et p[re]te[re]a idem Ric[ardu]m concessit p[ro] se & hered[ibus] suis q[uo]d ip[s]i Warant[izabunt] p[re]d[i]c[t]is Joh[ann]i & Cut[h]b[er]to & hered[ibus] ip[s]ius Cut[h]b[er]ti/ p[re]d[i]c[t]a ten[ementa] cum p[er]tin[enciis] cont[r]a p[re]d[i]c[tu]m Ric[ardu]m & hered[ibus] suos Imp[er]p[etuu]m et p[ro] hac recogn[icione] remissione quiet[a]clam[atione] Warant[ia] fine & concordia ijdem Joh[ann]es & Cut[h]b[er]tus deder[unt] p[re]d[i]c[t]o Ric[ard]o centum & triginta marcas argenti/
This is the final concord made i the Court of the Lady Queen at Westminster on the day after St. Martin’s in the Year of the Reign of Elizabeth by the grace of God Queen of England, France & Ireland defender of the faith etc., from the conquest, twenty six before Edmund Anderson, Thomas Meade, Francis Wyndam & William Peyam justices & Others faithful to the Lady Queen then there present, between John Huckvale Gentleman & Cuthbert Huckvale Gentleman complainants, and Richard Caryque Gentleman defendant, about four messuages, four barns, four gardens, four orchards, one hundred acres of land, sixty acres of meadow, sixty acres of pasture, two acres of woodland, and sixty acres of furze & heath with appurtenances in Overnorton and Chipping Norton whereof a plea of covenant was summoned between them in the same court Namely that the foresaid Richard acknowledged that the foresaid tenements with appurtenances to be the right of Cuthbert himself as that which the same Cuthbert & John had as a gift from the foresaid Richard and he has remised and quitclaimed them from himself and his heirs to the foresaid John & Cuthbert & the heirs of Cuthbert himself forever and moreover the same Richard has granted for himself & his heirs that they themselves will Warrant, to the foresaid John & Cuthbert & the heirs of Cuthbert himself, the foresaid tenements with appurtenances against the foresaid Richard and his heirs forever and for this acknowledgement, remise, quitclaim, Warrant, fine & concord the same John & Cuthbert have given to the foresaid Richard one hundred and thirty silver marks.
P20/1D/8 – The Bond
Nov[er]int univ[er]si p[er] p[re]sentes me henricu[m] Caryque de holborne in Com[itatu] mydd. gen[er]os[um] teneri & firmit[er] obligari Joh[ann]i Huckvale de Ov[er] norton in Com[itatu] Oxon. gen[er]os[um] & Cuthbert[i] Huckvale gen[er]os[um] fil[io] p[rae]d[icta] Joh[ann]is in Cent[um] libris legal[is] monet[ae] Angl[iae] Solvend[is] eisde[m] Joh[ann]i & Cuthbert[i] aut eor[um] cert[i] atturnat[o] vel exec[utoribus] suis: Ad qua[m] quide[m] Soluc[i]onem bene & fidelit[er] faciend[am] obligo me hered[es] exec[utores] et administrator[s] meos firmit[er] p[er] p[re]sentes Sigillo meo Sigillat[um] datum xiiijto die novembris Anno Regni d[omi]ne me[a] Elizab[ethae] dei gra[cia] Angl[iae] ffranc[iae] & hib[er]n[iae] Regine fidei defensor[is] &c/ vicesimo sexto./
Know all by these presentes that I Henry Caryque of Holborne in the county of Middlesex gentleman [is] to be held and firmly bound to John Huckvale of Over Norton in the county of Oxford gentleman & Cuthbert Huckvale gentleman, son of the aforesaid John, for One hundred pounds of lawful English money To be paid to the same John & Cuthbert or their certain attorney or executors: Towards which payment well and faithfully to be made, I bind myself, my heirs, executors and administrators firmly by these presents Sealed with my Seal given the 14th day of November the Year of the Reign of my Lady elizabeth by the frace of god the Queen of england France & Ireland defender of the faith etc. twenty six./
The condicon of this obligacon ys suche: that yf the above named John Huckvale & Cuthbert Huckvale & eyther of them their exec[utors] and assignes & ev[er]y of them shall or may peaceably & quyetly have hold occupye & enioy for t[er]me of the naturall lyffe of the seid henry Caryque: all those mesuags lands medowes lesues & pasturs w[i]th their app[ur]tenncs lying & beyng in Ov[er] norton aforeseid nowe in the occupacon of the seid John huckvale: w[hi]ch the seid Henry Caryque holdethe by Copye of Comte Roll of the Righte hon[or]able henry lord Compton for t[er]me of the lyff of the seid henry Caryque w[i]thout the lett sute trouble denyall evyction or contradyction of the seid Henry Caryque or of any other p[er]son or p[er]sons whatsoev[er] Claymyng in by from or under the seid henry Caryque att any tyme or tymes during the lyff of the seid Henry Caryque: And yf also the seid Henry Caryque att all & ev[er]y reasonable tyme & tymes whensoev[er] he shalbe therunto reasonably requyred by the seid John Huckvale & Cuthbert Huckvale or eyther of them or by their exec[utors] or assignes or any of them: shall surrendre & yeld upp or otherwyse convey extyngnysse all his right tytle int[er]est estate & demannd whatsoev[er] of & in the seid p[re]misses in suche man[er] and forme as the seid John Huckvale & Cuthbert or eyther of them their exec[utors] or assignes or any of them shall reasonably devyse or requyer w[i]thout any charge or burden to the seid henry Caryque by reason therof to be borne or susteyned otherwyse then his ordynary charg[e]s in travayling to p[er]forme the same: that then this obligacon to be voyd: otherwyse the same to stand in force & vertue Sealed & delyv[er]ed in the p[re]sence of p[er] me Henr Caryque Henry Browe Thomas Rogers Ric Price George Boughton
Permission to reproduce the images for inclusion within the Baelfyr granted by the Oxfordshire County Council – Oxfordshire History Centre, Oxfordshire. Copyright is retained by the OHC.