Spurneston Surname Ancestry Results
Our indexes 1000-1999 include entries for the spelling 'spurneston'. In the period you have requested, we have the following 1 record (displaying 1 to 1):
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|Murderers sheltering in Beverley Minster: and their victims
Criminals could evade pursuit by claiming sanctuary in the church of St John in Beverley, in the East Riding of Yorkshire. This liberty of the minster extended a league in every direction from the church door, and was divided into six sections, each giving greater sanctity to the rights of sanctuary, the sixth and innermost section being the presbitery or chancel. Near the altar there was a stone chair called the Frith Stool, seated on which an accused could claim total immunity. The bailiff would receive the oath of the fugitive, and a clerk recorded 'what man he killed, and wher with, and both ther namez'; the bailiff receiving a fee of 2s 4d, the clerk 4d. Sanctuary was afforded for 30 days, with food and lodging, after which the fugitive was protected to the borders of the county. But within 40 days he had to appear before the coroner, clothed in sackcloth, and be branded on his right hand with the sign of the letter A. This signified that he was swearing to abjure the realm: he was then free to leave the country unhindered. At Beverley the clerks kept a separate register of fugitives' petitions, which survives from 1478 to 1539 in Harleian Manuscript 560. It was edited and printed by the Surtees Society in 1837 under the title Sanctuarium Beverlacense. Some of the criminals came from a considerable distance: the great majority were murderers or homicides. Each entry usually gives full name, original address, (often) trade, a brief description of the crime, often with date, and usually the name of the victim. This index covers all the surnames given.
SPURNESTON. Cost: £4.00.
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