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Peace of the Church and the Realm Act 1275

STATUTUM WEST' PRIMUM. The Statute of WESTMINSTER, the First, Made at Westminster 25 die Aprilis, Anno 3 EDWARDI I. and Anno Dom. 1275.


Peace of the Church and the Realm Act 1275


1275 (3 Edw. 1) C A P. I.


THESE be the Acts of King EDWARD, Son to King HENRY, made at Westminster at his first Parliament general after his Coronation, on the Mondayof Easter Utas, the third Year of his Reign, by his Council, and the Assent of Archbishops, Bishops, Abbots, Priors, Earls, Barons, and all the Commonalty of the Realm being thither summoned, because our Lord the King had great Zeal and Desire to redress the State of the Realm in such Things as required Amendment, for the common Profit of holy Church, and of the Realm: And because the State of[1] the holy Church had been evil kept, and the Prelates and religious Persons of the Land grieved many ways, and the People otherwise intreated than they ought to be, and the Peace less kept, and the Laws less used, and the Offenders less punished than they ought to be, by reason where of the People of the Land feared the less to offend; the King hath ordained and established these Acts underwritten, which he intendeth to be necessary and profitable unto the whole Realm.


The Peace of the Church and the Realm shall be maintained. Religious Houses shall not be overcharged.


2 Inst. 15

FIrst the King willeth and commandeth, That the Peace of holy Church and of the Land, be well kept and maintained in all Points, and that common Right be done to all, as well Poor as rich, without respect of Persons.

(2) And because that Abbeys and Houses of Religion of the Land have been overcharged, and fore grieved, by the Resort of great Men and other,[2] so that their Goods have not been sufficient for themselves, whereby they have been greatly[3] hindered and impoverished, that they cannot maintain themselves, nor such Charity as they have been accustomed to do; it is provided, That none shall come to eat or lodge in any House of Religion of any other's Foundation than of his own, at the Costs of the House, unless he be required by the Governor of the House before his coming thither.

(3) And that none, at his own Costs, shall enter and come to lie there against the Will of them that be of the House.

(4) And by this Statute the King intendeth not, that the Grace of Hospitality should be withdrawn from such as need, nor that the Founders of such Monasteries should overcharge, or grieve them by their often coming.


No Purveyance shall be made of a Prelate without the Owner's Consent.

(5) It is provided also, That none high nor low, by Colour of Kindred, Affinity, or Alliance, or by any other Occasion, shall course in any Park, nor fish in any Pond, nor come to eat or lodge in the House or Manor of a Prelate, or any other Religious Person, against the Will or Leave of the Lord, or his Bailiff, neither at the Cost of the Lord, nor at his own.

(6) And if he come in, or enter with the Good-will, or against the Will of the Lord or his Bailiff, he shall cause no Door, Lock, nor Window, nor nothing that is shut, to be opened* or broken, by himself, nor any other, nor noManner of Victual, nor other Thing, shall take by*2 colour of Buying, nor otherwise;


Enforced by 14 Ed. 3. stat. 2 & 3. c. 1.

18 Ed. 3. stat. 3 & 4. c. 4. and 1 R. 2. c. 3. which gives the Prelates an Action and treble Damages.

Regist. 98.

The Punishment of the Offenders.

(7) and that none shall thresh Corn, nor take Corn, nor any manner of Victual, nor other Goods of a Prelate, Man of Religion, nor any other Clerk, or Lay-Person, by colour of Buying, or otherwise, against the Will andLicence of him to whom the Thing belongeth, or of the Keeper, be it within Market-Town, or without.

(8) And that none shall take Horses, Oxen, Ploughs, Carts Ships, nor Barges, to make Carriage, without the Assent of him to whom such Things belong; and if he do it by the Assent of the Party, then incontinent he shall pay according to the Covenant made between them.

(9) And they that offend against these Acts, and thereof be attainted, shall be committed to the King's Prison, and after shall make Fine, and be punished according to the Quantity and Manner of the Trespass, and after as the King in his Court shall think convenient.

(10) And it is to be known, that if they to whom such Trespass was done, will sue for Damages, a they shall be thereto received, andthe same shall be awarded and restored to the double;

(11) and they that have done the Trespass, shall be likewise punished in the Manner abovesaid; and if none will sue, the King shall have the Suit, as for a Thing committed against his Commandment, and against his Peace:

(12) And the King shall make Enquiry from Year to Year, what Persons do such Trespasses, after as he shall think necessary and convenient;

(13) and they that be indicted by such Inquests shall be attached and distrained by the great Distress, to come at a certain Day, containing the Space of a Month, into the King's Court, or where it shall please the King;

(14) and if they come not at that Day, they shall be distrained again of new by the same Distress, for to come at another Day, containing the Space of six Weeks at the least;

(15) and if they come not then, they shall be judged as attainted, and shall yield double Damages (at the King's Suit) to such as have taken Hurt or Damage, and shall make grievous Fine after the Manner of the Trespass.

(16) And the King forbiddeth and commandeth, that none from henceforth do Hurt, Damage, or Grievance to any Religious Man, or Person of the[4] Church, or any other, because they have denied Meat or Lodging unto them, or because that any complaineth in the King's Court that he hath been grieved in any of the Things above mentioned; and if any do, and thereof be attainted, he shall in cur the Pain aforesaid.

(17) And it is further provided, That the Points aforesaid shall as well bind our Counsellors, Justicers of Forests, and other our Justices, as any other Persons; and that the aforesaid Points be maintained, observed, and kept.


A Prelate shall receive no Lodgers.

Enforced by 9 Ed. 2. stat. 1. c. 11. So much of this Stat. as relatetes to Religious Houses is made obs. by 31 H. 8. c. 13. for the Dissolution of Monasteries and Abbeys.

(18) Likewise the King forbiddeth upon grievous Forfeitures, that no Prelate, Abbot, Man of Religion, or Bailiff of any of them, or of other, receive any Man contrary to the Form aforesaid.

(19) And that none shall send to the House or Manor of a Man of Religion, or any other Person, his Men, or Horse, or Dogs, *2 to sojourn, nor none shall them receive; and he that doth (seeing the King hath commanded the contrary) shall be grievously punished.

(20) Yet it is further provided, That the Sheriff from henceforth shall not lodge with any Person, with any more than five or six Horses; and that they shall not grieve Religious Men, nor other, by often coming and lodging, neither at their Houses nor their Manors.'


Note : this act is listed in the Chronological Table of Statutes as the Peace of the Church and the Realm Act, 1275

  1. For because the State of the holy Church, read because the State of his Kingdom and of the holy Church, &c.
  2. For so that their Goods have not been sufficient forthemselves, whereby they, &c. read who have sufficient forthemselves, whereby the Religious are so great, &c.
  3. For hindered, read oppressed.
  4. Forte patent.


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