While I dig through the tedious and often illegible cases in the coram rege rolls, looking for elites behaving badly, I am occasional rewarded with something neat. This one isn’t very relevant to my interests but it has its charm.
The 7th entry in the pleas before the King’s Bench, Easter term, 1450 (TNA KB27/756, Rex memb. 2, dorse), concerns the break and enter of the home and property of William Brytte, in the town of Brushford, county of Somerset by John Baker (alias Harris, alias Abbot), yeoman, with the help of Roger Sparke (gentleman) and Robert Preston (yeoman) ‘and others.’ So-far, so-bland.
The account goes on to record a colossal list of goods, most of which are ‘argenta‘, or silver. So vast is the laundry list of objects that I suspect Baker, and his team, needed vehicles to haul it all away and that detail may be in the case itself.
What is fairly clear is that after all this, Baker is ‘to be hanged’ (suspendere). I’m not sure what happened to his accomplices. It looks like they may have been released, but again, my limited Latin deprives me of the details.
Robin Hood, this certainly is not. I’m sure some careful re-writing would turn this into a very nice Clooney vehicle: “Bakerī undecim” perhaps?