Orders Appointed to be Executed in the City of London
Textual Note and Credits
Encoding in Progress (28 June 2010)
(Graduate Student Project)
This edition of STC 16712 is based on the Huntington Library copy available on microfilm (Early English Books I, Reel 1633:11). The spelling has been modernized. Early modern capitalization has been retained. A few words have been updated for clarity; for example, “vitlyng” is modernized as “victualling”).
Title Page (Sig. A1r)
[London Coat of arms]
Appointed to be executed in
The City of London, for setting rogues
and idle persons to work, and for
relief of the poor.
He that hath pity upon the poor, lendeth unto the
Lord: and look what he layeth out, it shall be
payed him again.
Blessed is the man that provideth for the sick and
needy : the Lord shall deliver him in the time of
Printed by Hugh Singleton, dwelling in
Smithfield, at the sign of the
[decorative initials: S within H]
For the relief of the poor, and
for setting to work of vagrant people,
there are to be set up in Bridewell certain
arts, occupations, works and labours.
2 There are to be provided stock and tools for those
works. There is to be provided bedding, apparel, and
diet for those poor to be set to work.
3 When order shall be taken and sufficient provision had
for the furniture of the works, Proclamation shall be
made throughout the City, that all vagrants which are
come out of other places, where by the law they ought to
be provided for, shall depart the City and the liberties
thereof, to the places of their birth or last abode according
to the Law, upon the pains thereof due.
4 Within convenient time after the day limited by such
Proclamation a general search shall be made, and like-
wise new general searches from time to time as shall be
requisite, throughout the City and the liberties thereof at
one instant, and all the vagrants that shall be there found
shall be brought to Bridewell to be examined.
5 Such of them as be not diseased, and the City not to
be charged with them by law, shall be dealt with according
to the law.
6 Such of said vagrants as shall be found diseased
and to be curable, to the number that the Hospitals shall be
able to receive, shall be sent to the Hospitals to be cured:
and being cured shall be sent to Bridewell again there to
be examined and used as is aforesaid.
7 In this respect order is to be taken with the Hospi-
tals of St. Bartholomew and St. Thomas, that such as
shall be sent to them from Bridewell by warrant of four
governors at the least under their hands to be subscri-
bed at a Court or assembly of them together, may be re-
ceived at all times of the week and not deferred until
their Court days. And that they spare the taking in of
other, for the time, if need so require.
8 Those whom the City by law is charged to provide
for and are able to work, shall be received into Bridewell,
and there kept with thin diet, only sufficing to sustain
them in health, and shall be set to work in such of the works
labours and occupations as they shall be found fittest for.
9 If any such shall loiter and will not do such labour as
in reason they ought and as is done by other of like capa-
city and strength, they shall be punished in Bridewell as
is used by the discretion of the Governors.
10 If any of them shall run away or escape from Bride-
well [Bridewell], and be taken again vagrant within the liberties
of this City, he shall be committed to the goal as a Rogue
an the first degree, and nevertheless after execution done
upon him by boring his ear, he shall again be sent to
Bridewell to work as before, if none other will at the
Sessions receive him according to the Law.
11 Likewise escaping and being soon taken again
vagrant, he shall be used as a felon according to the Law.
12 If any such vagrants shall be found skilful in any oc-
cupation whereby any Citizen or other using such occupa-
tion will be contented to receive them into service or that a-
ny Citizen or any other will be content to take any of them
Apprentice or to service either in London or in the coun-
try, the governors of Bridewell shall do their endeavour
so to bestow them. Provided always that if after such be-
stowing, any of them shall be found vagrant, he shall be used
as one escaping out of Bridewell as is aforesaid.
13 Such of them as belonging by law to the charge of the
City have young children upon their hands, and upon exa-
mination none shall be found which by law ought to find
them, the same children shall be sent to Christs Hospital
by such order and manner as hath been accustomed so far
as the house shall be able to maintain them. And the rest to
be maintained at the charge of the parish according to law.
14 Any of them as are aged lame and impotent and not
to be cured nor able to labour, shall be provided for in the
Parishes where they dwell by some good order there to
15 If any being so provided for shall be found begging in
the streets they shall be punished in Bridewell by order of
the governors for the first time. And for the second time,
and the third time they shall be used as Rogues in the first
and second degrees according to the Law.
16 Such Parishes as have more poor than they are able
to relieve shall have aid of the money to be levied for
17 If any Carrier or other shall by land or water bring
to this City or near to the same any children or other and
leave them unplaced or not sufficiently provided for such
Carrier or bringer shall be punished by imprisonment, or
otherwise as sharply as law will permit, and also shall be
bound to convey such back again to the places whence
they came or where they ought to be provided for accor-
ding to law. Warning to be given by Proclamation of
the contents of this and the next Article.
18 Every Innkeeper or such other person in this City or
near to the same, which shall wittingly receive or keep
any such child or other so brought and not sufficiently pro-
vided for, shall be charged to keep and provide for such
child or other so brought, or else be bound to discharge the
City of them, or to convey them back again from
whence they came. And if he refuse so to do, then he shall
be punished as is above said of the Carrier or bringer.
19 That Proclamation be made that every Citizen shall
have charge on pain of iii.s. iiii d. and every other person
shall be required, to bring or cause to be brought to the
Constable or his Deputy or to the Beadle of the Ward
or other Beadle every such vagrant as shall beg of them
in the Parish where such citizens or other do dwell: that
such vagrant may by such Constable or his Deputy or
by the Beadle be sent to Bridewell to be examined and u-
20The Constables, Surveyors of Parishes, Beadles of
Wards and other Beadles shall have charge to apprehend
all such vagrants as they shall find, and to bring or
send them to Bridewell as is aforesaid, on pain of vi.s.
viii.d. to be paid by every such Constable or his Deputy, and
iii.s. iiii.d. by every such Surveyor or Beadle in whom the
fault shall be found, and the same to be levied by distress,
and to be employed to the use of the poor in Bridewell.
21And also that the Constables, Deputies and beadles,
on like pain, shall convey to Bridewell, such as shall be
brought to them as is aforesaid.
22The Constable of every watch shall be charged upon
like pain of vi.s. viii.d. to apprehend all such vagrants
and Roguish persons as they shall find by night, and shall
send or convey them to the Counter or Cage, and so to
Bridewell the next day. And the Porter or Officers of
Bridewell shall presently receive them without any
further attendance of such as shall bring them.
23The Governors of Bridewell shall appoint some
meet persons to follow the causes at every Sessions a-
gainst such as shall be committed to prison as is aforesaid.
24For avoiding the return of idle vagrants, and for
better reformation of the idle youth and unthrifty poor
in this City and for further execution of the premises, e-
very Alderman or his Deputy in his ward assisted with
a sufficient steward shall keep his Court of Wardmote
once in every month for the first year now ensuing, and
- Orders appointed to be executed in the cittie of London, for setting roges and idle persons to worke, and for releefe of the poore. London, 1587? Print. STC 16712. Early English Books Online. Web.
- STC. Abbreviation for A Short-Title Catalogue of Books Printed in England, Scotland, and Ireland and of English books Printed Abroad, 1475–1640. Comp. by A.W. Pollard and G.R. Redgrave. 2nd. ed. rev. and enl. 3 vols. Begun by W.A. Jackson and F.S. Ferguson; completed by Katharine F. Pantzer. London: Bibliographical Society, 1976–1991. Print.
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