Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Further Enacted (20)

The Act of Union continues from post (19)...

"3. And it is further enacted...that all actions real that hereafter shall be conceived perpetrated or sued for any lands tenements hereditaments or any other thing within the said county or shire of Monmouth, and all actions personal within the same shire or county of the sum of 40.s. or above, and all actions mixed, shall be sued by original writ out of the King's high court of chancery in England, and heard determined and tried before the King's Justices in England or by Assie or Nisi Prius within the said county of Monmouth, in such like manner form and wise as all other actions real personal and actions mixed be sued heard determined and tried in or for any shire of this realm of England;...".

Nisi = if....not, unless, except   Prius = before, previously, thus my translation is "except previously (held)"

Not sure how 40.s. (shillings) would compare to today cost...anyone have a estimate?  Please post a comment in the comment section.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Every Part (19)

The Act of Union 1536 continues from post (18)...

"...and every part thereof, shall stand and be from and after the said Feast of All-Saints guildable, and shall be reputed accepted named and taken as parts and members of the said shire of Monmouth; and that the said town of Monmouth shall be named accepted reputed used had and taken head and shire town of the said county or shire of Monmouth; and that the sheriff's county or shire court of and for the said shire and county of Monmouth shall be holden and kept one time at the said town of Monmouth, and the next time at the town of Newport in the same county or shire, and so to be kept in the same two towns alternis vicibus and according to the laws of this realm of England for ever, and in none other places."

My translation of "alternis"= alternating, and "vicibus"= villages (towns).  Any folks out there have a precise definition?

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Lordships Marchers (18)

The Act of Union 1536 continues from post (17)...

"...and that all the residue of the said Lordships Marchers within the said country or dominion of Wales shall be severed and divided into certain particular counties or shires, that is to say the county or shire of Monmouth, the county or shire of Brecknock, the county or shire of Denbigh; and that the lordships townships parishes commotes and cantreds of Monmouth, Chepstow, Matherne, Llanvihangel, Magour, Goldecliffe, Newport, Wenllonge, Llanwerne, Caerlion, Usk, Treleck, Tintern, Skynfreth, Grousmont, Witecaste, Regaln, Calicote, Biston, Abergevenny, Penrose, Greenfield, Maghen, and Hochnyslade in the country of Wales, and all singular honours, lordships castles, manors, lands, tenements and hereditaments lying or being within the compass or precinct of the said lordships, townships, hamlets, parishes, commotes, and cantreds and every of them, in whose possession soever they be or shall be..."

Commotes and cantreds were Welsh land use terms.  They were applied to the tribal divisions of Wales.  A good discussion can be found in Chapter VIII, of J.E. Lloyd's History of Wales, starting p. 229.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Annexed and Joined (17)

The Act of Union 1536 continues from the post (16)...

"..., and forasmuch as divers and many of the said Lordships Marchers be now in the hands and possession of our sovereign lord the King and the smallest number of them in the possession of other lords, It is therefore enacted...that divers of the said Lordships Marchers shall be united annexed and joined to divers of the shires of England, and divers of the said Lordships Marchers shall be united annexed and joined to divers of the shire of the said country or dominion of Wales in manner and form hereinafter following;..."

Monday, December 23, 2013

Due Reformation (16)

The Act of Union continues from post (15)...

"   III. And forasmuch as there be many and divers Lordships Marchers within the said country or dominion of Wales, lying between the shires of England and the shires of the said country or dominion of Wales, and being no parcel of any other shires where the laws and due correction is used and had, by reason whereof hath ensued, and hath been practised perpetrated committed and done within and among the said lordships and countries to them adjoining, manifold and divers detestable murders burning of houses robberies thefts trespasses routs riots unlawful assemblies embraceries maintenances receiving of felons oppressions ruptures of the peace and manifold other malefacts contrary to all laws and justice; and the said offenders thereupon making their refuge from lordship to lordship, were and continued without punishment or correction; for due reformation whereof..."

Divers "Lordships Marchers" had been a thorn in the side of many folks since William I had begun the process many years before.  This became the "wild west" of the border lands.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Practised and Executed (15)

The Act of Union continues from post (14)...

"...and that the laws ordinances and statues of this realm of England, for ever, and none other laws ordinances nor statutes from and after the said feast of All Saints next coming, shall be had used practised and executed in the said country or dominion of Wales, and every part thereof, in like manner form and order as they be and shall be had, used, practised and executed in this realm, and in such like manner and form as hereafter by this Act shall be further established and ordained; any Act statue usage custom precedent liberty privilege or other thing had made used granted or suffered to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding."

None other laws, ordinances, or statutes than those used in the "realm of England" would be allowed in Wales. [All Saints was established by Alcuin in the year 800 AD to be on November 1.  It was initially a collective feast of the martyrs.  In earliest days martyrs were the only recognized saints.]

Friday, December 20, 2013

Hereditaments (14)

The Act of Union 1536 continues from post (13)...

" II. And that all and singular person and persons inheritable to any manor lands tenements rents reversions services or other hereditaments which shall descend after the Feast of All Saints next coming, within the said principality country or dominion of Wales, or within any particular lordship, part or parcel of the said country or dominion of Wales, shall for ever, from and after the said feast of All Saints, inherit and be inheritable to the same manors lands rents tenements reversions and hereditaments after the English tenure, without division or partition, and after the form of the laws of this realm of England, and not after any Welsh tenure, nor after the form of any Welsh laws or customs..."

The Welsh culture defined itself under a body of laws known as the Law of Hywel Dda.  It was carefully preserved and adapted to changing circumstances. [See in The Welsh Classics, Hywel Dda The Law, published by Gomer Press, 1990, translated and edited by Dafydd Jenkins.]  Each male child had equal rights and claim to the inheritance of his father.  English law gave inheritance through the oldest male child.  Thus begins the change in Welsh laws and customs which date from before 950 AD.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

United and Annexed (13)

The Act of Union 1536 continues from post (12)...

"...enacted and established that his said country or dominion of Wales shall be, stand and continue for ever from henceforth incorporated united and annexed to and with this his realm of England; and that all and singular person and persons, born or to be born in the said principality country or Dominion of Wales shall have enjoy and inherit all and singular freedoms liberties rights privileges and laws with this his realm, and other the king's dominions, as other the king's subjects naturally born within the same have, enjoy and inherit."

All "freedoms", "liberties", "rights", "privileges", and "laws" were to be applied to the folks identified as "persons" living in Wales.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Great Discord (12)

The Act of Union 1536 continues from (12)...

"...whereby great discord variance debate division murmur and sedition hath grown between his said subjects; His Highness therefore of a singular zeal love and favour that he beareth towards his subjects of his said dominion of Wales, minding and intending to reduce them to the perfect order notice and knowledge of his laws of this his realm, and utterly to extirp all and singular the sinister usages and customs differing from the same, and to bring the said subjects of this his realm and of his said dominion of Wales to an amicable concord and unity hath..."

"Amicable concord and unity" was the stated goal of this section.  This was to be done by removing the "sinister usages" and "customs" that were different from the existing order on the eastern side of the Marches.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Far Discrepant (11)

The Act of Union continues from (10) :

"An act for laws and justice to be ministered in Wales in like form as it is in this realm. St. 27 Hen. VIII, c. 26 1535 (Stat. Realm, III, 563)

Albeit the dominion principality and country of Wales justly and righteously is and ever hath been incorporated annexed united and subject to and under the Imperial Crown of this realm, as a very member and joint of the same, whereof the King's most royal majesty of mere droit, and very right is very head king lord and ruler; yet notwithstanding, because that in the same country principality and dominion divers rights usages laws and customs be far discrepant from the laws and customs of this realm, and also because that the people of the same dominion have and do daily use a speech nothing like nor consonant to the natural mother tongue used within this realm, some rude and ignorant people have made distinction and diversity between the king's subjects of this realm and his subjects of the said dominion and principality of Wales..."

Daily using a speech nothing like "the natural mother tongue" is the foundation to the next section of this act.  "Far Discrepant" is the concept and issue that begins the linguistic and phonetic changes producing the surname JONES.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Similarly (10)

The Act of Union continues from (9)...:

"[II. Similarly, no persons to have power to make Justices of Eyre, Assie, Justices of the Peace or of Gaol Delivery except the King's Great Seal.]

[III. All original writs, judicial writs, indictments of treason, felony, and trespass to be made only in the King's name.]"

The system of courts and application of the laws, customs, and statutes were to be centralized with the central government, which in this case was the "Crown".

Friday, December 13, 2013

United and Knit (9)

The Act of Union continues from (8):

"...but that the King's Highness, his heirs and successors kings of this realm shall have the whole and sole power and authority, thereof united and knot to the imperial crown of this realm as of good right and equity it appertaineth; any grants, usages, prescriptions, allowances, act or acts of parliament or any other thing to the contrary hereof notwithstanding."

United and knit to the imperial crown...so be it.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

For Reformation (8)

The Act of Union continues from (7):

"...for reformation whereof be it enacted...that no person or persons, of what estate or degree soever they be, from the first day of July, which shall be in the year of Our Lord God 1536, shall have any power or authority to pardon or remit any treasons, murders, manslaughters, or any kinds of felonies whatsoever they be; nor any accessories to any treasons, murders, manslaughters, or felonies; or any outlawries for any such offences afore rehearsed, committed, perpetrated, done or divulged or hereafter to be committed done or divulged by or against any person or persons in any part of this realm, Wales, or to the Marches of the same;..."

This section removed any judicial rights of the Marcher Lords.  This activity had been a major source of discontent along the border of Wales since William I made his appearance.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Most Ancient Prerogatives (7)

The next section to the Act of Union 1536 is given as "An  act for re-continuing Liberties in the Crown."  [St. 27 Hen. VIII, c. 24, 1535. (Stat. Realm, III, 555).  This continues from post (6):

"Where divers of the most ancient prerogatives and authorities of justice appertaining to the Imperial Crown of this realm have been severed and taken from the same by sundry gifts of the King's most noble progenitors, kings of this realm, to the great diminution and detriment of the royal estate of the same, and to the hindrance and great delay of justice:..."

The second issue to be addressed by this statue is the large number of independent estates (lordships) scattered about the Marches and Wales.  Each "lord" was an independent judge, jury, and administrator of his own area. 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Astricted and Obliged (6)

The Act of Union continues from (5)...

"...and also shall be sworn astricted and obliged to the keeping of their sessions of peace, and to the due execution of all and singular statutes and ordinances made and to be made in the like manner and form and under like pains and penalties as Justices of the Peace...in other shires of this realm of England be and shall be bounden and obliged; any act statute prescription usage custom liberty or privilege had made accustomed or used to the contrary notwithstanding."

The role of the justices were see that the laws of England were applied within the areas of Wales as outlined.   The are given as:  1) act, 2) statute, 3) prescription, 4) usage, 5) custom, 7) liberty, or 8) privilege.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Said Justices of Peace (5)

The Act of Union continues from (4)...

"...and that the said Justices of Peace...and every of them shall have like power and authority within the said counties of Chester Flint Anglesey Carnarvon Merioneth Cardigan Carmarthen Pembroke and Glamorgan to do use and execute every thing and things as other Justices of Peace...have within any other of the shires of this realm of England...".

The justices were to have "like power and authority" as every other justice in the realm of England.

The Statues of Rhuddland (Statutum Wallie) of 12 Edward I [3 March 1284] had divided the newly conquered Principality of Wales into six counties.  They did not form part of the English realm but were part of the private estates of the Crown.  The rest of Wales consisted of approximately 140 "Marchers Lordships" which were held from the English Crown according to feudal right.  Each "Lordship" was a separate unit of government with its own court and officials.    It was under this disorganization that   the social life and policies in Wales met the Act of Union 1536.  The disadvantages and dangers of this form of political life left their marks.  Only after the Wars of the Roses forced the forfeiture of many of the Lordships to the Crown did it become possible to establish the Council of the Marches of Wales in 1471. [The father of Henry VIII, had something to do with all this early activity!]  This Council of the Marches of Wales was the foundation to the Act of Union.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Full Power and Authority (4)

The Act continues...from (3)...

"...which shall have full power and authority to inquire hear and determine all manner of thing and things inquirable presentable or determinable before Justices of Peace, Justices of Quorum and Justices of Gaol Delivery in other shires of this realm of England, by force or virtue of any statute or statutes made and to be made or by the course of the common laws of this realm;..."

According to Jackson, a statute provide that "worthy" men were to be appointed to keep the peacee and hear and determine felonies.  They were to hold their sessions four times a year.  The term "magistrate" has been used as an equivalent term to "justice of the peace". [See: The Machinery of Justice in England, by J.M. Jackson, p. 80]

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Ordained and Enacted (3)

Act of Union continued in sequence from post (1)...(2)...:

"...It is ordained and enacted...that the Lord Chancellor of England or the Lord Keeper of the Great Seal for the time being from time to time and at all times shall have full power and authority by his discretion to nominate and appoint Justices of Peace, Justices of the Quorum and Justices of Gaol in the said counties...by commission under the King's Great Seal;..."

The "Lord Chancellor" or "the Lord Keeper of the Great Seal" were to have full power and authority to nominate and appoint judges in the various courts.

For those interested, a discussion of the judicial system in England can be found:

"The Machinery of Justice in England", by R.M. Jackson, Cambridge, At The University Press, 1940.  Chapter I is a historical introduction to the courts and common law.

Friday, December 6, 2013

More Reasons (2)

The document Act of Union continues:

from post  (1)

 "...By reason whereof the said murders robberies thefts trespasses and breaking of the peace have remained unpunished to the great animation of evil doers in the same counties: For redress and amputation whereof and to the intent that one order of ministering of his laws should be had observed and used in the same as in other places of this realm of England is had and used,..."

Let's see now...there were manifold :  1) robberies
                                                             2) murders
                                                             3) thefts
                                                             4) trespasses
                                                             5) riots
                                                             6) routs
                                                             7) embraceries [ an attempt to influence a jury corruptly]
                                                             8) maintenances [ an unlawful intermeddling in a legal suit by
                                                                                     assisting either party with means to carry it on ]
                                                             9) oppressions
                                                           10) ruptures of his peace
                                                           11) many other malefacts [ crime - from fr. malefacere = to do
                                                                                                                                                      evil ]

It would seem that everyone committing these things were getting away with it.  Since the reign of Henry VIII was certainly without any of the above, his realm should be applied to the counties and palatines so outlined.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Rationale (1)

The underlying reason(s) for an action is often hidden in the fine print.  The Act of Union 1536 is pretty straight forward in giving an explanation of the controlling principles that were involved in its application to the laws of England.  The underlying reasons are stated in the first part of the sentence.

"The King's Highness considering the manifold robberies murders thefts trespasses riots routs embraceries maintenances oppressions ruptures of his peace and many other malefacts which be daily practised perpetrated committed and done within his counties and county palatines of Chester and Flintshire in Wales adjoining to the said county of Chester, and also in his counties of Anglesea otherwise called Anglesey Kaernarvon and Merioneth within his Principality of North Wales, and also in his counties of Cardigan, Carmarthen, Pembroke, and Glamorgan in South Wales, by reason that common justice hath not been indifferently ministered there like and in such form as it is in other places of this his realm;..."

Wow...some list of activities that were viewed from the English side of the fence.  The need for "common justice" administered in each county and county palatine in Wales as was done "in other places" begins the basic rationale.

Please note that post title(s) will be given a number which places the post in sequence to the Act of Union.  This is the (1) = first post which gives the document as written in English Historical Documents 1485 - 1558, edited by C.H. Williams, Oxford University Press, NY in 1967.   The Act of Union is recorded on pages 555 - 560.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The Purpose

Family trees that involve branches through Wales and England can present a variety of difficult tasks.  Many of the surnames associated with these tasks have a relationship to the Act of Union 1536.  It is the purpose of this blog to present this document as recorded in "English Historical Documents 1485 - 1558", edited by C.H. Williams, Oxford University Press, 1967.  The blog is intended for the genealogist who desires to read and understand the "primary" documents.  The content will provide the factors that played such an important role in the many surnames from Wales that resulted during this transition period. 

The statue is titled "An act for making of Justices of Peace in Wales, 1535".  It is recorded "St. 27 Hen. VIII, c. 5".  There is also a reference as (Stat. Realm, III, 534).

The posts will be given in brief sections with my comments included.  Perhaps this blog will generate interest into the origin of other surnames besides my own...JONES.

For a discussion of the JONES surname and the Act of Union 1536, see my other blog posts... "Impact Act of Union 1536"; Thursday, Feb. 24, 2011... @ thejonessurname.blogspot.com.

Let's begin.