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Shakespeare v. Rogers
ca.
1605

ER27/5 recto

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ER27/5 recto
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Institution Rights and Document Citation

 

Reproduced by permission of Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.

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The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust has graciously contributed images under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommerical ShareAlike 4.0 International license.  Visitors may download, link to and cite the images for personal research only. Any further use, including, but not limited to, unauthorized downloading or distribution of the images, commercial or third party use, is strictly prohibited. Visitors must contact the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust to request additional use, at: images.scla@shakespeare.org.uk

Document-specific information
Title: Shakespeare v. Rogers
Date: ca. 1605
Repository: The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, Stratford-upon-Avon, UK
Call number and opening: ER27/5

Item Title
Shakespeare v. Rogers
Item Date
July 1604
Repository
Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, Stratford-upon-Avon, UK
Call Number
ER27/5

ER27/5 verso

View Image Assets
ER27/5 verso
Click image to enlarge

Institution Rights and Document Citation

 

Reproduced by permission of Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.

Terms of use
The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust has graciously contributed images under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommerical ShareAlike 4.0 International license.  Visitors may download, link to and cite the images for personal research only. Any further use, including, but not limited to, unauthorized downloading or distribution of the images, commercial or third party use, is strictly prohibited. Visitors must contact the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust to request additional use, at: images.scla@shakespeare.org.uk

Document-specific information
Title: Shakespeare v. Rogers
Date: ca. 1605
Repository: The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, Stratford-upon-Avon, UK
Call number and opening: ER27/5

Item Title
Shakespeare v. Rogers
Item Date
July 1604
Repository
Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, Stratford-upon-Avon, UK
Call Number
ER27/5

Institution Rights and Document Citation

 

Reproduced by permission of Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.

Terms of use
The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust has graciously contributed images under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommerical ShareAlike 4.0 International license.  Visitors may download, link to and cite the images for personal research only. Any further use, including, but not limited to, unauthorized downloading or distribution of the images, commercial or third party use, is strictly prohibited. Visitors must contact the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust to request additional use, at: images.scla@shakespeare.org.uk

Document-specific information
Title: Shakespeare v. Rogers
Date: ca. 1605
Repository: The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, Stratford-upon-Avon, UK
Call number and opening: ER27/5

The register of Stratford’s court of record, which would have begun in 1601, has not survived and the only knowledge we have of its proceedings are to be found in loose case papers. One of these papers is an undated declaration made by William Shakespeare’s attorney, William Tetherton, shown here. The declaration concerns money owed by Philip Rogers for Shakespeare’s sale to him of 20 bushels of malt for the sum of 39s. 10d, in a series of six transactions, between March and June 1604. After borrowing two more shillings from Shakespeare, Rogers repaid six shillings, ending up with a debt of 35s 10d. to which Shakespeare’s attorney added 10 shillings in damages. As this is the only paper to have survived, the outcome of the case is not known. Given that Shakespeare had not brought the case until several unsuccessful appeals to Rogers had been made, it is likely to have been heard at some time in 1605.

Philip Rogers has been traditionally identified simply as an apothecary, and this was indeed one of the ways he made a living. However, he was also a victualler, or tavern keeper, and it was in this capacity that, after 1602, he frequently surfaces in the Stratford records (e.g. Minutes and Accounts, vi, p. 390). This means that Shakespeare’s sale of malt to him at regular intervals in the first half of 1604 was to facilitate Rogers’s main business as a victualler.

The absence of the court of record register over these years, and any additional material relating to Shakespeare’s malting interests, prevents further analysis of the importance of malting to his family’s income. But the survey of 1598 establishes that Shakespeare held sizeable quantities of malt in his barns (far more than would be required for his own domestic purposes) and that, like many townsmen of similar social standing, he and his family were engaged in the buying and selling of malt for commercial reasons.

It is clear, however, that Shakespeare was not always on hand to deal with local or family business. As head of the family, legal actions would have to be brought in his name, regardless of whether or not he was directly involved in the dealings. Some scholars have therefore suggested that Anne, his wife, may have been managing Shakespeare’s local business concerns in the same way as the remarkable Elizabeth Quiney supervised Richard Quiney’s business when he was away from home. However, there is no direct evidence that Anne acted in this way, and an agent might have as easily handled Shakespeare’s local business affairs.

Modernized/Translated transcriptions

[recto]

Borough of Stratford: Philip Rogers was summoned by the serjeant at mace there to reply to William Shakespeare in a plea that he return to him 35s 10d which he owes him and unjustly detains; and the pledges for the prosecution are John Doe and Richard [Roe]; and whereupon the same William, through his attorney William Tetherton, says that, whereas the said Philip Rogers, on 27 March in the first year of the reign of James king of England, France and Ireland, and the thirty-seventh year of his reign as king of Scotland, here at Stratford aforesaid  and within the jurisdiction of this court, had bought from the same William three measures of of malt for 6s, of the said 35s 10d; and also that whereas the said Philip Rogers, on 10 April in the second year of the said king of England etc., here at Stratford aforesaid  and within the jurisdiction of this court, had bought from the same William four measures of malt for 8s, of the said 35s 10d; and also that whereas the said Philip, on 24 April in the second year of the said king of England etc., here at Stratford aforesaid  and within the jurisdiction of this court, had bought from the same William three other measures of malt for 6s, of the said 35s 10d; and also that whereas the said Philip, on 3 May in the second year of the said king of England etc., here at Stratford aforesaid  and within the jurisdiction of this court, had bought from the same William a further four measures of malt for 8s, of the said 35s 10d; and also that whereas the said Philip, on 16 May in the second year of the said king of England etc., here at Stratford aforesaid  and within the jurisdiction of this court, had bought from the same William a further four measures of malt for 8s, of the said 35s 10d; and also that whereas the said Philip, on 30 April in the second year of the said king of England etc., here at Stratford aforesaid  and within the jurisdiction of this court, had bought from the same William two  measures of malt for 3s 10d, of the said 35s 10d; and whereas the said Philip, on 25 June in the second year of the said king of England etc., here at Stratford aforesaid  and within the jurisdiction of this court, had borrowed two shillings of legal money of the said 35s 10d, to be paid to the same William when required; all which several sums amount in all to 41s 10d, and the said Philip had made satisfaction to the same William in the sum of six shillings, neverthless the said Philip, though frequently asked, has not yet returned the remaining 35s 10d to the same William, but has refused to repay it and still refuses to do, whereby he says that he is suffering and has damages to the value of 10 shillings; and so he brings suit.                    

Semi-diplomatic transcription

[recto]

Stretford
Burgus
Phillipus Rogers sommonitus fuit per servientem ad c1avam ibidem ad Respondendum Willelmo Shexpere
de placito quod reddat ei triginta et quinque solidos decem denarios quos ei debet et iniuste
detinet Et sunt plegii de prosequendo Iohannes Doe et Ricardus [Roe] etc. Et vnde idem Willelmus
per Willelmum Tetherton Attornatum suum dicit quod cum predictus Phillipus Rogers vicesimo septimo
die Marcii Anno regni domini nostri Iacobi Regis nunc Anglie francie et Hibernie primo
et Scocie tricesimo septimo, hic apud Stretford predictam ac infra iurisdiccionem huius
curie emisset de eodem Willelmo tres modoros brasii pro sex solidis de predictis triginta et quinque
solidis decem denariis, ac etiam quod cum predictus Phillipus Rogers decimo die aprillis Anno
Regni dicti domini Regis nunc Anglie etc, secundo hic apud stretford predictam ac infra iurisdic
cionem huius curie Emisset de eodem Willelmo quatuor modoros Brasii pro Octo solidis
de predictis 35o solidis decem denariis. ac etiam quod cum predictus Phillipus, vicesimo quarto die
dicti Aprillis Anno Regni dicti domini Regis nunc Anglie etc secundo, hic apud stretford
predictam infra iurisdiccionem huius curie, Emisset de eodem Willelmo alios tres modoros brasii pro
sex solidis de predictis 35o solidis 10o denariis, ac etiam quod cum predictus Phillipus tercio die
Maii Anno Regni dicti domini Regis nunc Anglie etc. secundo hic apud stretford predictam ac
infra iurisdiccionem huius curie Emisset de eodem Willelmo alios quatuor modoros brasii
pro Octo solidis de predictis 35o solidis 10o denariis. ac etiam quod cum predictus Phillipus decimo
sexto die Maii Anno regni dicti domini Regis nunc Anglie etc secundo hic apud stretford
predictam infra iurisdiccionem huius curie Emisset de eodem Willelmo alios quatuor modoros brasii
pro Octo solidis de predictis 35o solidis 10o denariis. ac etiam quod cum predictus Phillipus tricesimo
die Maii Anno regni dicti domini Regis nunc Anglie etc secundo hic apud stretford predictam,
ac infra iurisdiccionem huius curie Emisset de eodem Willelmo duas modoros brasii pro
tres solidis decem denariis de predictis 35o solidis 10o denariis. ac etiam quod cum predictus Phillipus
vicesimo quinto die Iunii Anno dicti domini regis nunc Anglie etc. hic apud stretford
predictam ac infra iurisdiccionem huius [curie] mutuatus fuisset duos solidos Legalis monete etc de predictis
35solidis 10o denariis residuos solvendos eidem Willelmo cum inde requisitus fuisset, Que omnia
separales somme attingunt se in toto ad quadraginta et vnum solidos decem denarios, Et
predictus Phillipus Rogers de sex solidis inde eidem Willelmo postea satisfecisset, predictus tamen
Phillipus Licet sepius requisitus predictos triginta et quinque solidos decem denarios residuos
eidem Willelmo nondum reddidit sed illos ei hucusque reddere contradixit, et ad
huc contradicit vnde dicit quod deterioratus est et dampnum habet ad valenciam decem solidorum
Et inde producit sectam etc

Written by Robert Bearman

Last updated June 7, 2016