In 1391 Dec 19, Johannes le Rous de Raggeley (John Rous; John le Roos) was granted, by Richard II, (In year 15 of his reign) a Royal Pardon licence to crenellate Stanley Poundelarge (Stanley Pontlarge)
Licence for the king's liege John le Rous, of Raggeley, to crenellate his manor of Stanley Poundelarge, co. Gloucester, and pardon to him for crenellating part of the manor without licence, and of whatever pertains to the king therefor. By p.s. (CPR)
Johannes le Rous de Raggeley (Ex, &c., perdonavimus ei transgressionem quam fecit kernellando parcellam manerii praedicti absque licentis nostra,) ... manerium ... Stanley Poundelarge, Glouc. (Turner and Parker)
Granted at Westminster. Grant by privy seal.
Johannes le Rous de Raggeley issued a pardon, in c.1391, for crennellating his house in 'Stanley Poundelarge' without licence. At the same time he was granted licence to crenellate the house.
This is the same John Rous who was pardoned for crenellating his house at Ragley in 1381. Quite what is happening here is unclear. Does he have an enemy who is reporting him for the technical offence of crenellating without licence and then the authorities are issuing a pardon for form sake? Has he twice made an application only after he finished the work? In either case it suggests licences to crenellate were only a 'technical' requirement and that the building of a house with crenellations was not seriously controlled by the state.
Original source is;
Lyte, H.C. Maxwell (ed), 1905, Calendar of Patent Rolls (1392-96) p. 46 online copy
(In fact, the original source given is usually a transcription/translation
of what are precious medieval documents not readily availably. It should be
noted that these transcription/translations often date to the nineteenth or
early twentieth centuries and that unwitting bias of transcribers may affect
the translation. Care should also be taken to avoid giving modern meaning to
the medieval use of certain stock words and terms. Licentia is best translated as 'freedom to' not 'permission'.)
Significant later sources are;
Emery, Anthony, 2006, Greater Medieval Houses Vol. 3 (Cambridge) p. 212 Coulson, C., 1994, 'Freedom to Crenellate by Licence - An Historiographical Revision' Nottingham Medieval Studies Vol. 38 p. 92n17 Turner, T.H. and Parker, J.H., 1859, Some account of Domestic Architecture in England (Oxford) Vol. 3 part 2 p. 420 online copy
John Rous of Ragley (d. 1396)
Identifying this John Rous is difficult because of the prominence of his late C15 name sake - the antiquarian and priest.
In 1370 John Rous of Ragley exchanged with the abbey (of Evesham) lands in Ombersley, Worcs., for land and rent in Ragley and Kingley. In Dec. 1381 he received a pardon for crenellating a house above the gate of his manor of Ragley without licence, and was given leave to crenellate the remainder of the manor. John Rous died before the close of 1396, followed shortly after by his eldest son John. (VCH)
There are several branches of the Rous family all minor knights.
More information about licences to crenellate can be found here.
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Record created by Philip Davis. This record last updated on Sunday, October 4, 2015.