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reign. Charters more and more ample were granted by Edward II., Edward III., Richard II., and Henry IV. They were confirmed by Edward IV., and Edward VI.; they were confirmed and enlarged by Elizabeth, and finally ratified by the Act of Parliament for the Incorporation of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge in the 13th of Elizabeth.
The main object of these Charters was to grant and secure to the Chancellor the full and sole power, authority, and jurisdiction over members of the University in cases of disputes, actions, and trespasses, wherein a scholar or privileged person was one of the parties. And also to give the officers of the University the power of regulating the markets and fairs, with authority over venders of provision within the precincts of the University, and to enable them to guard against the frauds and impositions of forestallers, monopolizers, and purveyors. The obtaining these privileges and the preserving them occasioned the University great expense and trouble; especially as it was necessary at the commencement of each reign to obtain a renewal or confirmation of the old Charters. At page 97 will be seen an account of the expenses incurred by Dr. Madew and Mr. Ralph Aynesworth in obtaining this favour of King Edward VI. The bill of expenses which they brought in to the University is curious as forming a sort of journal of their proceedings. They were absent from Cambridge more than fifteen weeks, having to follow the Court from London to Kingston upon Temnys." They took with them upon a packhorse the Silver Cross of the University, by the sale of which they raised nearly sufficient money to pay their expenses. They succeeded in obtaining a renewal
of all the old Charters, but at the cost of £92. 18s., a very large sum of money in those days, equivalent to nearly £1000 at the present time*.
There were also continual disputes between the members of the University and the townsmen: the latter complaining of the authority of the Chancellor, and the former endeavouring to obtain an extension of the grants already possessed by them. At page 28 will be found a complaint of the Mayor and Burgesses, set forth in three and twenty articles of injuries done by the officers of the University to the mayor and townsmen; and the answer to them by Messrs. Conysby and Munforthe, serjeants at law, in behalf of the University.
In 1547 a petition was addressed to Somerset, Lord Protector, by the University, seeking fresh privileges from the Crown; strong objections were offered by the townsmen against this suit. An attempt was made to reconcile the parties: William Paget and Thomas Smith as umpires drew up an agreement between the University and the Town, for the approval of the two bodies, but it came to nothing, as they could not agree, especially upon the ninth article. By this article the University consented to grant to the Mayor and Corporation, "all such liberties, authorities, and pre-eminence in the fairs of Midsummer and Sturbridge as the University doth at this time enjoy" upon the annual payment of twenty pounds; the Corporation would only consent to pay
About this period the price of a good sheep was 2s., of beef a halfpenny the pound, of wheat 8s. the quarter, and of red wine 3d. the
quart. See Chron. Precios. p. 116, 117.
twenty marks, and upon this "a stey was made and nothing ended."
One great object with the Vice-Chancellor and Heads was to obtain the insertion of their names in the commission of the peace for the town†; amongst the liberties they sued for in the above petition was: "Quod Vicecancellarius qui pro tempore fuerit Mr sive Præpositus Collegii regalis, Mr Collegii Stæ Trinitatis, Mr Sti Johannis, Mr Collegii Christi, Mr Collegii reginalis, Mr Domus Sti Petri sint Justiciarii pacis in villa cant. etc." To this clause Archbishop Parker has appended a note: "This not granted by Queen Elizabeth."
In refusing this application it seems to have been the intention of Queen Elizabeth to keep as distinct as possible the powers vested in the authorities of the University, and in the town magistrates. And during her reign it does not appear that the Vice-Chancellor and Heads were in the commission of the peace for the But in the following reign they succeeded in
* See pages 86-96. These articles are the groundwork of the Charter of Queen Elizabeth, granted in the third year of her reign.
+ From an account of the University disbursements (page 45), it appears that in attempts to obtain this and other privileges, between 1534 and 1543, they exhausted the public chest, reducing it from 2791. 4s. 11d. to a debt of 17. 11s. 6d. These proceedings probably induced Cardinal Pole to insert the following clause in his injunctions to the University:
"Nullus ex procuratoribus vel alius quilibet Londinum vel alium locum extra universitatem expensis universitatis proficiscatur nisi ex causa necessaria et plane hujusmodi ut non nisi per nuntium specialem expediri possit: ac tum certum aliquid pro impensis ejus qui mittendus est constituatur. Assignetur etiam certum tempus, &c.”— p. 251.
obtaining the insertion of their names in this commission*.
After obtaining a Charter from the Crown, the next step towards completing the University was to secure the sanction of the papal authority. The first Apostolical Bull, which bears any marks of authenticity, is one issued by JOHN XXII. about the year 1318. It alludes to privileges conferred by former popes and kings, confirms them all, and declares: "Apostolica auctoritate statuimus, ut in prædicto loco Cantabrigiæ sit de cetero
* A dispute has arisen from this union of the two powers in one individual, which has involved the University in a troublesome and expensive lawsuit. Under the Act, which required two town magistrates to license an alehouse, the Vice-Chancellor with another town magistrate has been in the habit of granting these licenses. By a late Act the power of licensing these houses is transferred from two magistrates to the bench at their session. The Vice-Chancellor now claims to retain this privilege, as having belonged to his office of Vice-Chancellor, and the town magistrates maintain that he only exercised it as pertaining to his office of town magistrate. It is a matter of no importance to the University, as concerns its discipline, whether the Vice-Chancellor or the town magistrates have the power of licensing alehouses; but in times of political excitement this power may be abused to party purposes, and against such an abuse there seems to be better security by vesting it in a bench of magistrates than in an individual. At Oxford, where the authority of the Vice-Chancellor is kept distinct from that of the town magistrates, nothing of this kind has occurred. The latter have always licensed the alehouses, and no complaint has been made that the discipline of the University has in any wise suffered by such an arrangement.
+ The Bull of HONORIUS bearing date 624, and that of SERGIUS, 689, are evidently fictitious; although, as will appear, they were sanctioned and confirmed by subsequent Popes, especially by Eugenius IV. in 1433. These two Bulls, and also that of John XXII., are given in Dyer.
STUDIUM GENERALE, illudque ibidem vigeat perpetuis futuris temporibus in qualibet facultate volentes auctoritate prædicta et etiam decernentes quod collegium magistorum et scolarium ejusdem studii UNIVERSITAS sit censenda et omnibus juribus gaudeat quibus gaudere potest et debet UNIVERSITAS quæcunque legitime ordinata." From this period the UNIVERSITY properly dates its commencement; it was before merely a STUDIUM, but now it became STUDIUM GENERALE or UNIVERSITAS*.
One privilege obtained by this sanction of the Apostolical See was, that those who were DOCTORS of the University of Cambridge might now read their lectures in any part of Christendom; before they were confined to their own schools. But this was a small part of the advantage derived from the papal favour. The University acquired a full exemption from the ecclesiastical and spiritual power of the bishop of the diocese, and of the archbishop of the province; and these powers, as far as members of the University were concerned, were vested in the Chancellor or Rector of that body. This privilege was, however, constantly disputed. We find from a Bull issued by Boniface IX. in the 12th year of his pontificate, 1401, that the University had been put to much expense and trouble by a dispute with the Bishop of Ely, who claimed the right of confirming the election of the ViceChancellor. After a suitable preamble it runs thus: "Volumus et apostolica auctoritate tenore præsentium statuimus et ordinamus quod de cetero perpetuis futuris temporibus Cancellarius quem per ipsos et universitatem
* At this period two colleges existed, COLLEGIUM STI PETRI, founded Anno 1281, and AULA DE CLARE vel COLLEGIUM UNIVERSITATIS, founded Anno 1316.