Ancient petition, 14 December 1378

Laurence Poussin, troublesome priest. From History of the Guernsey Churches, Staff. 'Lord de Saumarez' MSS.'

To the King and his Council Henry Rector1 Lieutenant of M Hugh de Calvyley Warden of the Isles of Guernsey &c show[s] that he had a writ from King Edward addressed to Hugh de Calveley or his Lieutenant, saying that he (the King) had heard that a subject of his adversary of France & of his allegiance in the time of war entered the Church of St. Peter-Port in the said isle of Guernsey & took all the profits thereof & converted them to his own use, & commanding the said Hugh or his lieutenant to find out by inquisition on what day & year the predecessor of the now incumbent of the said Church left the same, & on what day & year the now incumbent entered the same, & when he entered the said isle, & took such profits, & by whose favour he entered it & by whom he took the said profits, &c., &c.

Witnessed at Westminster the 26th day of August in the 2nd year of the reign of King [Edward] [Ancient Petitions says correctly, Richard.]

I have now enquired by good people, gentlemen & bourgeois & others of the said isle above suspicion, viz: Denys le March[ant], John Bernard, John le Picart, John de Beauchamp, Raoul Quoquerel, Pierre du Gaillard, Pierre [], John Vall...(?), Thomas Blondel, Phillipot Blondel, John Rognez [Ancient Petitions, 'Roney'] le viel, John Rognez [Roney] 'le jeune,' John Godelette le viel, John Godelette le jeune, John Cincoille, John Freeman [Freman], John Cointet le viel, Johyn Cointet le jeune, Richard le Goubet, Pierre de St Pierre et Raoul du Marest, by whom it was found that after the death of Sire Girard Sollez parson of the Church of St. Peter-Port in Guernsey who died in possession thereof the 5th day of March, 1368, a priest called Sire Laurens Pouchin, born & bred in the part of St. Germain de Heaville in the 'hague' of the coast of Cherbourg of the territory heritage & allegiance of the King of Navarre, the which priest from infancy until he accepted the said Church had lived as notary papal & imperial at the court of the Pope—accepted the said Church by the grace of Pope Urban the 5th made to him at the collation of the Abbot & Chapter of Marmoustier patrons of the said Church, & was put in possession by the vicar of the Bishop of Coutances the 26th of March in the said year, at which time peace was made between the princes. And M. Walter Huet2 was then Warden of the islands. And the said priest came to the said island & had possession of the said Church by the bull of St. Peter the Pope who had provided for him without favour or maintenance of our people of the said Island, and since that time the said priest has resided in the presbytery of his Church, makes the cure &c, and has comported him as a liege and faithful man of our King and has not converted all the profits to his own use &c &c.

Sealed with my own seal the 14th day of December 1378.

[Date: 1382.] To the King &c.

Denys le Marchant & John le Picart Jurats in the Isle of Guernsey show that on the 26th day of November, 1382, in the King's court, in the said Isle in the presence of John le Marchant bailiff of the King & others by [?] called Richard Cliderowe there was presented to Henry de Rither lieutenant of M. Hugh de Calvyleig the said Denys & John & John Nicholas,3 a patent from the Court of Chancery as follows: Richard, &c. to Hugh de Calvyleigh Keeper of the Islands of Guernsey, Jersey, Sark & Alderney, & to Denis le Marchant, John Nicholas & John le Picart:

Whereas: We presented Richard Cliderowe, Clerk, to the Church of Perport, We now hear that Laurence Pussin, Clerk, of Normandy, has entered the said Church by virtue of a certain provision made to him by the Apostolic See, & holds the same by force, & We now command you to take him & bring him before us, &c. &c. In witness &c in the 6th year of Our reign [1382.]

[The rest of this document is so indistinct that it cannot be deciphered.]

Given at Douney (?) in the said Island day of January 1382[-3.]

1 Ancient Petitions: Suggests Rither, Rithre, or Rider.

2 Huet was Warden from 1867 to 1378. According to Inq. post mortem 46 Edw. III 80 [Anno 1371] a precept was given to Huet or to John Cok his Lieutenant in Guernsey and to John Le Marchant, Bailiff, to enquire as to the right of presentation mentioned in this petition. A return was made stating the matter was examined 'en Jugement en presence des Jureys du Roy' by 'bonnes et loyales enquesters des plus valables dignes et loyals habitaunts de lisle.' They answered on 15th March 1371 (i) That the presentation belonged to Marmoustier and that the King had never presented either in time of peace or war; (ii) That the Church is vacant by the death of Girard Sollez, priest, last in possession; and (iii) That Laurens Pouchin, priest, was instituted by the Pope as his successor, and by his Attorneys took possession by banns published in the Church on three Sundays without any opposition; he was delayed in taking personal possession but came to the island on the feast of St Peter in Cathedra, 1370.

3 Probably John Nicolle who became Bailiff of Guernsey in 1384.

Laurens Pouchin: On May 8, 1384, a Commission was issued to Hugh de Calveley, Dennis le Merchand, John Nicholas and John Pycard to arrest and bring before the King and Council in England Lawrence Pussyn, Clerk of Normandy, who, it is averred, under colour of a papal provision has craftily intruded into the Church of St Peter-port, to which the King has presented his clerk Richard de Cliderowe. (Calendar of Patent Rolls, Rich. II, 1381-1386, p. 424).