Gender and Defamation in York 1660-1700

The Causes


I restricted the original research to cases in (or close to) the city of York between 1661 and 1700 to give a manageable amount of material for a MA thesis project with the tools I then had available (WordPerfect and index cards!). I was also interested in exploring the period after the Restoration, which had had less attention than the century between the Reformation and Civil War.

Most of the listed causes were located using the paper indexes in the Borthwick that were the only finding aids before the online cataloguing project, and which were not always complete or completely accurate. There are a few additional cases not found in my original research and subsequently added from the online database, which I haven't yet been able to transcribe. (I include them in the list more in hope than expectation that this will actually happen...)

The database

The 'words' column is closely based on the wording as alleged in the original documents (minus some legalistic verbiage!). Occasionally it's written as directly addressing the defendant but most often uses the third person. (This should not in itself be taken as a guide to whether the defamatory words were originally spoken to or about the plaintiff.)

To find cases of interest, you can:


1. The subject of litigation

I've attempted to categorise the defamatory words recorded in causes. This tagging is based primarily on the 'words' column as above, but in some cases, witnesses reported significant speech in depositions that was not reflected in the formal libel and I've added tags for these.

A few notes on common tags:

Links to the Cause Papers

Reference numbers should link to the YCP images:

List of Causes

Reference Plaintiff Year Tags
DC.CP.1661/1 Jane Canbie spinster more info (d) 1661 pox, rogue, whore nolibel
DC.CP.1661/2 Susan wife of Christopher Hartnes more info (d) 1661 pox, whore
DC.CP.1662/4 Susan wife of Christopher Hartnes more info (d) 1662 pox, whore
DC.CP.1663/16 Margaret wife of William Hawkesworth more info 1663 [not tagged]
CP.H.2473 Jane Tyerman widow more info (d) 1664 whore, witch
CP.H.2560 Hester Browne more info (d) 1664 bastardy sentence
CP.H.4958 Robert Hewit more info (d) 1664 rogue, thief, whoremaster
CP.H.4965 Jane Tyreman widow more info (d) 1664 whore, witch
DC.CP.1664/6 Elizabeth wife of Daniel Russell more info 1664 [not tagged]
CP.H.2679 Anne wife of John Brittaine more info (d) 1665 cuckoldry, whore
CP.H.2507 Henry Hunter more info (d) 1665/6 cuckold
DC.CP.1666/5 Dorothy Cooke more info 1666 [not tagged]
CP.H.2711 Francis Field more info (d) 1667 rogue, whoremaster
CP.H.2758 Mary Allenson more info (d) 1667 whore
CP.H.2821 William Woodyeare more info 1667 sonofwhore sentence,nolibel
DC.CP.1668/2 John Baycock esquire more info 1668 pox
DC.CP.1668/6 Priscilla wife of Charles Farnehill more info 1668 bawdyhouse, outsider, whore
DC.CP.1669/3 Thomas Goodrick more info 1669 cuckold
DC.CP.1671/12 Anthony Middleton more info 1671 [not tagged]
CP.H.3001 Margaret wife of Edward Glaves more info (d) 1672 cuckoldry, pox, whore
CP.H.3098 Mary wife of Richard Titchmarsh more info (d) 1672 impudent, pox, whore
CP.H.3107 John Aveyard more info (d) 1672 rogue, sonofwhore
CP.H.3109 Mary wife of Henry Cowper more info 1672 impudent, pox, whore
DC.CP.1672/1 Mountague Gyles more info 1672 rape, rogue, whoremaster
DC.CP.1672/2 Mountague Gyles more info 1672 rape, rogue, whoremaster
DC.CP.1672/4 Catherine wife of Joseph Harrison more info 1672 whore
DC.CP.1672/8 Thomas Pinder more info (d) 1672 whoremaster
CP.H.2909 Elizabeth Ashton more info (d) 1673 impudent, pox, whore
CP.H.3145 Martha wife of Thomas Coates more info (d) 1673 bastardy, impudent, whore
CP.H.2923 Martha wife of Thomas Coates more info (d) 1674 bastardy, impudent, whore
CP.H.3170 Juliana wife of John Foster more info 1674 whore
DC.CP.1675/11 Anne wife of William Straker more info 1675 impudent, whore
CP.H.3272 Anne wife of Henry Way more info 1676 bastardy, whore
DC.CP.1676/6 Jane Peacock spinster more info 1676 impudent, whore nolibel
CP.H.3296 Frances wife of William Turnbull more info (d) 1677 whore
CP.H.3300 Thomas Steele more info 1677 rogue, thief office
CP.H.3810 Frances wife of William Turnbull more info 1677 cuckoldry, whore
DC.CP.1677/7 Elizabeth Pickard more info (d) 1677 whore
CP.H.3443 Maria wife of Philip Brocket more info (d) 1678 impudent, whore
DC.CP.1678/5 Anthony Wright clerk more info 1678 [not tagged]
CP.H.3408 Elizabeth wife of William Stringer more info 1679 bastardy, whore
CP.H.3409 Lucilia wife of Arnold Gooday more info (d) 1679 thief, whore
CP.H.3410 Magdalen wife of Richard Dibbs more info 1679 whore
CP.H.3475 John Mould more info (d) 1680 whoremaster
CP.G.3491 Thomas Scarth more info 1681 [not tagged]
CP.H.4979 Thomas Dalkin more info (d) 1681 bastardy, rogue, whoremaster sentence
CP.H.4056 Robert Hillary more info 1682 cheat, rogue office
CP.H.4076 Catherine wife of William Marston more info (d) 1682 thief, whore
CP.H.4988 Anne Mitchell more info (d) 1682 bastardy, impudent, whore sentence
CP.H.3555 Anne wife of Robert Ramscarr more info 1683 bastardy
DC.CP.1683/5 Mary wife of John Wild clerk more info 1683 [not tagged] office
CP.H.3644 Mary wife of James Edwardes more info (d) 1685 thief, whore
CP.H.3646 Alice Wood more info (d) 1685 thief, whore sentence
CP.H.3649 Alice Wood more info (d) 1685 thief, whore office,sentence
CP.H.3654 Richard Milburne more info (d) 1685 rogue, thief office
CP.H.5008 Mary wife of Thomas Spragg more info (d) 1685 impudent, whore
DC.CP.1685/1 Hester Beeforth more info (d) 1685 whore
DC.CP.1685/3 Jane wife of Edward Crofts more info 1685 whore
DC.CP.1685/4 Richard Dennis jr more info 1685 rogue, whoremaster
DC.CP.1685/10 Edward Wilberforce more info 1685 [not tagged]
CP.H.5008A Mary wife of Thomas Spragg more info (d) 1685 whore
CP.H.3668 Jeremy Welfitt more info (d) 1686 cheat, rogue office,sentence
CP.H.3692 Elizabeth wife of John Ballard more info (d) 1686 outsider, pox, whore sentence
CP.H.4109 Margaret wife of William Hawkesworth more info (d) 1686 [not tagged]
CP.H.4020 Mary wife of Thomas Newstead more info (d) 1687 bastardy, pox, whore
DC.CP.1687/1 Christabella Bethell more info 1687 [not tagged]
DC.CP.1688/9 Margaret wife of John Moore more info (d) 1688 whore sentence
CP.H.3802 Sara Bigg more info (d) 1689 bawdyhouse, whore
DC.CP.1689/2 Joan Daile spinster more info 1689 whore
CP.H.4230 Jane Pickering more info (d) 1690 whore
DC.CP.1690/1 Mark Gill more info 1690 rogue
DC.CP.1690/5 Christopher Welburne more info (d) 1690 rogue nolibel
CP.H.4258 Henry Thorpe more info (d) 1691 rogue office
CP.H.4267 Seth Potter more info (d) 1691 rogue, sonofwhore
CP.H.4271 Mary Sugden more info (d) 1691 impudent, whore
DC.CP.1691/2 Hannah wife of George Earby more info 1691 [not tagged]
DC.CP.1691/5 Valentine Nicholson clerk more info 1691 cheat, rogue office
DC.CP.1691/6 Seth Potter more info 1691 rogue, sonofwhore, whoremaster office
DC.CP.1691/8 Robert Rowsby gent more info 1691 [not tagged]
DC.CP.1691/10 Elizabeth wife of Francis Thompson more info 1691 [not tagged]
CP.H.4293 Elizabeth wife of Thomas Wrightson more info 1692 whore
CP.H.4301 Isabel wife of Thomas Thompson more info (d) 1692 cuckoldry, thief, whore
CP.H.4302 George Thwing more info (d) 1692 rogue office
CP.H.4316 Anne wife of William Marden more info 1692 bastardy, whore
DC.CP.1692/1 William Chapman more info 1692 [not tagged]
DC.CP.1692/9 Margaret Pape widow more info 1692 outsider, whore
CP.H.4320 William Anderson more info (d) 1693 outsider, rogue, thief office
CP.H.4321 James Howgill more info (d) 1693 cheat, rogue office
CP.H.4325 Jane Morrett more info (d) 1693 impudent, pox, whore
CP.H.4326 Frances wife of John Eyre more info 1693 bestiality, whore office
DC.CP.1693/2 James Howgill more info 1693 cheat, rogue
CP.H.4379 Walsingham Cooke more info (d) 1695 cheat, rogue, whoremaster
DC.CP.1695/5 Richard Pickard more info 1695 [not tagged]
CP.H.4451 Anthony Harland junr more info (d) 1696 pox, rogue, whoremaster
CP.H.4456 Mary Grayson more info (d) 1696 pox, whore
CP.H.4469 Jane Tocket als Young more info 1696 [not tagged]
CP.H.4471A Christian Needham more info (d) 1696 whore
CP.H.4548 Mary Grayson more info (d) 1696 pox, whore
DC.CP.1696/1 Grace wife of Thomas Watson more info 1696 bastardy office
CP.H.4489 Margaret Pape widow more info (d) 1697 outsider, pox, whore
DC.CP.1697/2 Leonard Fifield more info 1697 [not tagged]
DC.CP.1697/3 Elizabeth Hood more info 1697 bastardy, whore
CP.H.4534 Thomas Hewitson more info 1699 rogue, whoremaster office
CP.H.4534A Thomas Daniel more info 1699 rogue, whoremaster
CP.H.4557 Emma Smith widow more info 1699 whore
DC.CP.1700/1 Joseph Bawtry more info 1700 [not tagged]
DC.CP.1700/2 Dorcas Cussons more info 1700 [not tagged]