Monday, January 09, 2012

Officers of the Earl of Derby's Household 1391-3

Those who accompanied him on the journeys arc indicated by the asterisk; Levnthorpe went to Calais in 1390

Thomas Herdwyk, clerk, auditor of accounts of Derby's officers and servants [He was also auditor to John of Gaunt's officers.]
Thomas de Wombewell, auditor and "supervisor terrarum domini in Anglia".
Simon Bache, clerk, treasurer of the household (sometimes called Symkyn Bache).
Robert Hatfield, esquire, controller of the household.
John Levnthorpe (Lewn- or Leunthorpe), receiver-general.
*Peter Bucton, knight, steward.
William Loveney, clerk of the great wardrobe.
*John Dyndon, valet of the wardrobe.
*Hugh de Waterton, knight, chamberlain.
*Richard de Kyngeston (or Kyngston), archdeacon of Hereford, treasurer for war.
*Robert de Waterton, esquire, master of the horse or marshal (marescallus)
*Hugh Herle, chaplain and confessor.
*(John) Derby le herald.
*William Pomfreit, clerk, chief clerk of the kitchen.
*John Payne, esquire, botiller.
*John Bounton, armourer.
*William Hauer, clerk of the lord.
Sir John, almoner.

Kyngeston, Richard, and Lucy Toulmin Smith. 1894. Expeditions to Prussia and the Holy Land made by Henry earl of Derby (afterwards King Henry IV.) in the years 1390-1 and 1392-3. Being the accounts kept by his treasurer during two years. [Westminster]: Printed for the Camden society.

This is a fascinating picture of a noble household away from home, although, of course, an unusually wealthy one: Henry was heir to the richest duchy in England and The Man Who Would Be King.

We can see the division of responsibility in accounting. The steward kept his own account of spending on victuals and other consumables, and the chamberlain tracked gifts and gratuities. The treasurer for war tracked everything else and put the big picture together.

Henry spent little out of his own hand. Sometimes he gave alms and oblations personally, but he frequently delegated that to others, particularly his chaplain. He once bought a horse personally, probably to insure he got one to his liking. He also spent money on gaming. He drew on his steward when he wanted cash for gaming, but also promiscuously on his other officers, including the clerk of the kitchen at one point.

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