Examination of Thomas Hellyar, Gardener and Minstrel

TNA: SP 16/260

f [1] (20 February)

Thomas Hellyar of Aldermaston in the County of Berkshire Gardiner and Minstrell examined by the Right Honourable Sir francis Windebank knight his Maiestes Principall secretary of state saith

That he this Examinat comming into the yard of Edward Parsons of Aldermaston aforesaid and there meeting with the said Parsons he told this Examinat That now his Roguish Profession might goe forward againe, and then this examinat answered God blesse them that are the cause of it, and then asked the said Parsons who it was the cause thereof, and the said Parsons replyed, that he thought it was that Vnsanctified Rascall the Bishop of Canterbury.

And then this Examinat falling into further discourse with the said Parsons asked him what he thought of the Dr Bowles the Bishop of Rochester, and then Parsons replyed, Hang him he is a sott. And this examinat further saith that he went to Bradfield to the Bishop of Rochester's house about a weeke after Christmas to acquaint him with this busines but the Bishop was not then at home. All this, this examinat wilbe ready to despose if he be therevnto called.

(signed) The Marke of
Thomas Hellyar.

  • Footnotes
    • <...>: followed by Hellyar's mark resembling a sideways figure 8
  • Glossed Terms
    • despose v inf, pr to depose, testify
  • Endnote

    The case continues on f [2] but is concerned only with Hellyar's testimony in the charge of the defamation of the character of the bishop of Rochester brought against Parsons. The controversy arose as a result of the re-issuing of the Book of Sports by Charles I on 18 October 1633. John Bowle, bishop of Rochester, 'was prompt to commend the 1633 reissue of the Book of Sports, and suspended clergy who would not read it' (ODNB). Despite the opinion so strongly expressed by Parsons that William Laud, newly appointed archbishop of Canterbury, had been behind the reissuing of the tract, Laud 'later protested that he had not moved this initiative' (ODNB).

  • Document Description

    Record title: Examination of Thomas Hellyar, Gardener and Minstrel
    Repository: TNA
    Shelfmark: SP 16/260
    Repository location: Kew

    20 February 1633/4; English; paper; bifolium; 350mm x 195mm; repaired; originally folded twice. Now mounted on a stub, stamped 159–60, and bound together with other State Paper documents; bound in grey paper boards with blue cloth corners and spine; red paper lacquered patch glued on spine with title stamped in gold: 'DOMESTIC CHARLES i 1633 FEBRUARY.'

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