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Seeking SanctuaryCrime, Mercy, and Politics in English Courts, 1400-1550$
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Shannon McSheffrey

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198798149

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198798149.001.0001

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Dean Caudray and the City of London

Dean Caudray and the City of London

The Politics of Sanctuary in the Fifteenth Century

(p.58) 3 Dean Caudray and the City of London
Seeking Sanctuary

Shannon McSheffrey

Oxford University Press

Between the 1420s and the 1450s, the City of London and the collegiate church of St Martin le Grand had a long-running conflict over the church’s sanctuary privileges. The records of the dispute show us how Dean Richard Caudray of St Martin’s constructed claims for his church’s sanctuary privilege, and how the mayor and aldermen of London responded when they found those privileges encroached on their own developing ideas about jurisdiction. In a broad sense, Caudray ‘won’ his battles with the City in the mid-fifteenth century both by more successful appeals to Henry VI’s ideas about mercy and kingship and by linking the chapel’s sanctuary privileges with its other liberties. The outcome of the conflict embedded chartered sanctuary more securely in the English legal and political landscape.

Keywords:   sanctuary, London, Middle Ages, jurisdiction, mercy, politics, archives

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