British Popular Customs Present And Past - online book

A calendar of the traditional customs, practices & rituals of the British Isles.

Home Main Menu Order Support About Search

Share page  

Previous Contents Next

Feb. 3.]                        SHROVE Tuesday.                                71
" Alsoe, whereas tho Companye and occupation of the Sadlers within the Cittie of Chester did yearcly by custome, time out of rnemorie of man, the same day, hour, and place, before the Mayor, offer upon a truncheon, staffe or speare, a certaine homage to the Drapers of the cittie of Chester, called the Sadler's ball, profitable for few uses or purposes, as it was, beinge a ball of silk of the bigness of a bowle, was
anoient use of archery and shooting in the long bow, for the honour and defence of the realm, and that the same is much decayed, and other unlawful games much in use : " Ordered by the Mayor, Aldermen, and Common Council, with the consent of the whole occupation of drapers, sadlers, and shoemakers, that the said occupa­tion of shoemakers (which always have, time out of mind, given and delivered yearly, 011 Shrove Tuesday in the afternoon, unto the drapers, before the Mayor, at the Cross on the Roodee, one ball of leather, called a foot-ball, of the value of 3s 4d., or above, to play at from thence to the common-hall of the said city, and further at the pleasure of the evil-disposed persons; whereof hath arisen great inconveniences) shall give and deliver yearly to the said drapers, before the Mayor at the said time and place: six silver gleaves, each of the value of 27d. or above, to be disposed of at the pleasure of the said Mayor and drapers, to him that shall win a foot-race before them, that or any other day; and that the sadlers (who have time out of mind given, and delivered yearly, at the same time and place, every master of them, unto the drapers, before the Mayor, one painted ball of wood, with flowers and arms, upon the point of a spear, being goodly arrayed upon horseback accordingly) shall henceforth give and deliver to the said drapers, before the Mayor, at the same time and place upon horseback, a bell of silver, to the value of 3«, 4d., to be disposed of at the discretion of the Mayor and drapers, to him that shall get the horse races on that day; and that every man that hath been married in the said city, since throve Tuesday, then last past, shall then and there 'also deliver to the said diapers before the Mayor, an arrow of silver, to the value of 5s. or above, instead of such ball of silk and velvet, which sueh married men ought then to have given and delivered by the ancient custom of the said city (used time out of mind), which silver arrow shall be disposed of by the Mayor and drapers, for the preferment of the said feat and exercise of shooting in the long-bow, for avoiding the said inconveniences, any use or prescription to the contrary notwithstanding; and also, the said drapers and their successors, shall keep yearly their recreation and drinking, as they used to do, time out of mind, and that the shoemakers and sadlers, and persons hereafter to be married, shall observe this order upon pain of 10Z. for every offence, toties quoties, to be forfeited to the drapers according to ancient custom."
Previous Contents Next