I have previously welcomed a two part guest post on Roger Mortimer, 1st baron Wigmore by David Pilling. This new post by David details Roger Mortimer, a steadfast and loyal ally to the crown, and his deadly attack on Hereford. This city took the side of Simon de Monfort during the Second Barons War and on November 10th 1264, Mortimer went for the attack.
Inquisition Saturday before the Annunciation 49 Henry III (1264)
When the citizens of Hereford were informed of the coming of Sir Roger de Mortimer and the other great men who were with him, they burned certain houses in the suburb which hindered the defence, to the damage of the inhabitants there, and threw some down, from the gate of St. Nicholas to that of Thithene, making purprestures (illegal encroachment) on the curtilages there in order to widen the ditch, which was to the great improvement of the city, but to the damage of one tenant of the bishop, and tenants of the king. For the same cause they pulled down the prior of St. Guthlac’s mill, and two houses of the bishop’s fee between the gate of Thithene and the gate of Wydemareis. From the gate of Bissopestret to the gate of St. Owen they made no purpresture on the bishop’s fee, except that they threw earth from the ditch on to his field. Also they pulled down the mill house of Richard de Hereford, clerk, before the army came against them; and afterwards they pulled down part of the mill-pond because it was on the town ditch, to the great damage of the said Richard.
Also the keepers of the castle, Walter de Muchegros and Richard de Bagginden, and their associates caused men to go out of the castle at night on the eve of St. Martin, while the army was about the town; and they burned the prior of St. Guthlac’s mill, because by it the enemy could cause them much annoyance. That night also they burned eight houses in the street called Bithebroke, which were an annoyance to the castle and city; and this was to the loss of the dean and chapter. Also Sir Roger de Mortimer and Sir Ralph his son, Roger de Clifford, Roger de Leyburne, and Hugh de Mortimer with their men, Hamo le Strange and his men, with his posse of Shropshire, Brian de Brompton, Ralph de Arras, Robert de Turbevile, the elder, John his brother, who was marshal of the army, Hugh de Turbevile, Henry de Burthhulle, Ode de Hodenet and their men, many of the liberty of the prior of Leominster, and Roger Sprengehose and his men came to the city with a great army with banners displayed, and grievously assaulted it on the eve of St. Martin in the above year from the first hour of day till night; and they spent the night in the priory of Hereford and the suburbs, to the great damage of the said prior and convent, because they wasted all the goods they found there.
Also while the said great men were at the assault, some left the army and crossed the Wye, viz. Baldwin de Bulers, William de Seint Cler, Adam de Mungumery, Aytrop de la Were, Stephen le Arblester, marshal of the bishop of Hereford, Milet Pichard, Ardcrne, and many others, and plundered the town of Neothere Bullyghope, Putestone, Hyneton, the prior of St. Guthlac’s Hereford mill, Luttele, Topesle, and Wydemareis, and La More and Huntynton, which are in the suburbs of Hereford, and returned to the army with their spoil.
Also these same plundered the leper hospital of St. Giles at Hereford. On St. Martin’s day they cried the assault and grievously assaulted the city till the third hour; and some of the said great men cast fire upon the street called Bissopestret, and burned all that suburb, to the great loss of the king, the bishop of Hereford, and the prior of St. Guthlac. At the same time they burned the prior’s mill; also the house of Aylmeston to the damage of the bishop and chapter. Also the citizens of Hereford committed trespasses against certain men of the bishop and dean and chapter, but how, the jury know not.
Photo: The Mortimer arms, as they appear in the Wigmore Chronicle [Chicago MS 224 ]