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Copyright © 2011 Monumental Brass Society (MBS)

Page last updated 04 March 2015

Copyright: Jon Bayliss

April 2011 – Arthur Dericote, 1562, and four wives,  Mary, Emma, Margaret and Joan, Hackney, Middlesex


The brass of Arthur Dericote is set in a Purbeck marble panel of a type much used in the second half of the sixteenth century for wall-mounted brasses. The alabaster shield appears to be a later replacement of a brass one. Although he is depicted in armour, Dericote was a London draper. He was received a grant of arms five years before his death. He had started life as the son of Humphrey Dericote, a Worcester dyer, who died in 1524, and was presumably apprenticed to a London draper, gaining the freedom of the City of London and membership of the Drapers Company. He evidently enjoyed a very successful career as a draper, as the large sums of money left in his will indicate. The brass names his wives as Marie, Eme, Margarete and Jone. He married the latter three by licence, Emme Butler of the diocese of London on 11 January 1544/5, Margaret Fullwood, widow, on 25 November 1547 and Joan Rosse of St. Mary Woolchurch on 5 July 1554. He acquired land in Hackney in 1557. Only Joan is shown with children on the brass. Of her two sons, only Thomas was alive when his father made his will in September 1562. Arthur also had two unmarried daughters, both under twenty-one. One of them, Tomasin, is commemorated on a brass at Stoke Prior in Worcestershire with her husband, Robert Smith, a London draper, died 1609, and his second wife. As the will mentions a son in law, Henry Browne, and another daughter who was the wife of John Hollowey, Arthur must have had daughters by his first wife, Mary. Throughout the will, his surname is written as Dedicote.


Arthur Dericote's funeral was recorded in the diary written by Henry Machyn, a London citizen:

The xviij day of November was bered at Hakenay master Dedycott sqwyre and draper of London, and ther he gayff to (blank) pore men xxiiij gownes of rattes coler of vijs. the yerd, and had a penon of armes and cott armur, and master Rychemond was the harold; and he gayff mony blake gownes a xx . . . and ij dosen of skochyons of armes, and ther was a xx [of the] clarkes of London syngyng, and ther dyd pryche master (blank); and ther was the masters of the hospetall with gren stayffes; master Avenon and master Mynors cheyff mornars; and after to ys plase to dener.


Arthur Dericote's will was proved by his chief mourners, Alexander Avenon, Alderman of London, who, like Dericote, had been born in Worcestershire, and John Mynors, a fellow draper. The brass was in place by the following year when a receipt recorded ' Paid Christopher Grigge for a stone to be set in the wall where the said Arthur Dedicote lieth buried    £3.6.8 '. Christopher Grigge was a marbler who lived in the parish of St Botolph Aldersgate. The brass was installed in the medieval parish church and remained in the tower of the old church long after the new church was built in the 1790s. Shortly before 1880 it was finally removed to a vestibule off the entrance to the new church. The inscription reads:



Here under fote lieth Arthure Dericote who buried was of late

Of London Somtyme Citizen, and of Esquiers state.
Of Drapers whilome Cõpanie, but laste of Hackneie towne
A parisshner he was full good, all vice he leaid a downe.
Wives fower by mariage had, that lawfull was and righte
Marie, Eme, and Margarete, and Jane the fourthe she highte.
By whome two children heare he had, and ended then his lyfe
The xii day of November moneth, one childe alive and wyfe.
A thousand and five Hundered, and Sixtie yeares and two
Sence Christes Incarnacion he ganne to live a newe
God graunt to Christians all of life such race to rune
That at the lenghe thei may receave of Christ a Joyfull Dome.

References


J.G. Nichols (ed), The Diary of Henry Machyn (1848), 296


Adam White, 'A Biographical Dictionary of London Tomb Sculptors, c. 1560 – c. 1660: Addenda and Corrigenda', The Walpole Society, volume 71 (2009), 338


Joseph Foster (ed), London marriage licences, 1521-1869 (1887), column 392