Latin and English


The language of the majority of sixteenth-century coroners’ reports is Latin. Occasionally, however, they were written down in large part or entirely in English. The inquest transcribed below (TNA, KB9/514/159), which falls into the latter category, describes an archery accident that took place on 3 May 1530 in Bonsall, Derbyshire.

Archery accident inquest in English

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Derbys[hire]. Inquisycon taken at Bonsall in the Counte affoure seyd in the xviij day of maij the yere and Reyn of Henry the viijth kyng of ynglond and of ffrance the deffensor of the ffeyth and lorde of yrelond xxij Byffoure John Pole on of the C[o]ronars of owre seyd sov[er]ane lord the kyng of hys Counte affoure sayd by vertue of hys offyce vppon the vyew of the body of Jamys key late ded by the othe of Edward Bown of Bonsall Jamys Deyn of the same Wyll[ia]m ffowke of the same Nycolas fflyntt of Mattelok Wyll[ia]m Wynfeld of ye same henry Bown of ye same Thom[a]s hanke of Snett[er]on Alexandre Redford of Wensley Wyll[ia]m Teyler of ye same Rychard Abell of Cromford Richard Astbury of ye same John Cantrel of Wyrkeswurth John Halewall of ye same and Thomas Aspenall of ye same Sworne/ wech fforsoth Jure sey vppon ther othe that the seyd Jamys Key late of ye lee in the Counte of Derbe Mynar and on Olyv[er] Bestow late of Bonsall affoure seyd in the same Counte teylar Wyth odur toe p[er]sons dyd shote to geyder at a payre of gardeyn Butt[es] at Bonsall affoure seyd in the Counte affoure seyd the iijth dey of the moneth of may the yere affoure seyd at vij of the Clok at aftur none of the same dey/ And so yt Chanssyd that the same James key Shotte ffyrst at the butte and inContenely ffowlode hys Shote and the seyd olyv[er] shotte aftur hym w[ith] arowe pryce of a halpeyny and the seyd Jamys key bye vnfortune movyd hys hed by twene ye seyd butt[es] to loke vppon the marke of the seyd butte and the seyd arowe Stroke ye seyd Jamys key on ye lyft syde of hys hed and made in the same parte of hys hede a mortall wond wech wonde was in lenth & brede on ynch in depnys ij ynch of the wech mortall wonde the seyd Jamys key ley seke at Bonsall be ffoure seyd in the Counte befoure seyd ffrom the seyd iij dey of may the yere affoure seyd vnto the viijth dey of the sayd moneth of may the yere affoure seyd at wech viij dey ye seyd Jamys key dyed at Bonsall befoure seyd in the Counte befoureseyd at iij of ye Clok at aftur none of the seyd mortall wonde/ and the soe the seyd Jure sey vppon ther othe that the seyd olyv[er] Bestow ys pryncypall causer of the deth of the seyd Jamys key and by vnfortune and ayenste hys wyll kyld the seyd Jamys key at bonsall affoure seyd in the Counte affoureseyd the dey howre & yere affure seyd In man[er] & fforme befoure seyd by infortune and ayenst hys wyll/ also the seyd xij men sey vppon ther othys that the seyd olyv[er] Bestowe had godys to the value of xiij s at the dey of the seyd vnfortune done the which good[es] remayne in his own honde/ In wyttenes whereof aswell ye seyd corone[r]as the seyd xij men to thys p[re]sent Inquisycion sette ther sealys yeven the dey & yere above wrytten