Brokets of London 15 to 16th C - The Broket Archive

London Brokets 15-16th C

The first Brokets that have been found in London are 2 families in the 15th and 2 in the 16th.

Contents of this Page:
1. 15th C
2. 16th C
3. Singletons

1. 15th C

  1. Hugh Broket of Havering-atte-Bower 1420
  2. John Broket of the City of London 1405
  3. Parnella Broket of the Exchequer, Westminster 1413
  4. Richard Broket of St Martin Outwych 1454
  5. Thomas Broket of the Exchequer, Westminster 1399-1435
  6. William Broket of the Exchequer, Westminster 1433

Hugh Broket of Havering-atte-Bower 1420

Hugh Broket was one of 3 defendants alleged to have trespassed with force and arms on land in Havering-atte-Bower (c 15 m NE of the City of London) in a Court of Common Pleas case in Michaelmas term 1420. They all denied the allegations and the case was ordered to be heard by jury:1   Read more

Hugh could well have been the uncle of Richard, alive 1454.

John Broket senior of the City of London 1405

John Broket senior was one of 8 Jurors alleged to have committed embracery (corruption) in London in a Court of Common Pleas case in Michaelmas term 1405. In John’s case it was gifts of 4 marks in the parish of St Mary Colechurch in the City of London and one breakfast worth 40d in the parish of All Hallows, Honey Lane, City of London. They all denied the allegations and the case was ordered to be heard by jury:2   Read more

John ‘senior’ probably had a son—or younger relative at least—called John Broket junior, living at the time, 1405. Both churches mentioned were destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666 and not rebuilt.

Parnella Broket of the Exchequer, Westminster 1413

Most probably a daughter of Thomas the Remembrancer, Parnelle Broket was a go-between in 1413 for the Exchequer to pay £100 on 10 Oct to Queen Joan of Navarre, Henry IV’s second wife:3

To Joan, Queen of England. In money paid to her by the hands of Parnelle Broket and Nicholas Alderwych, in part payment of a greater sum due to the said Queen upon a certain private agreement made between the said Queen and the present Lord the King; and especially concerning the marriage of the Earl of March, purchased and obtained from the said Lady the Queen by the said now Lord the King whilst he was Prince of Wales. By writ of privy seal, &c., £100.

TNA E403_614 m1 Parnelle Broket 1413
“p’ manus Parnelle Broket” i.e. by the hands of Parnella Broket.4

The Treasurer Lord Henry Scrope, whom Thomas worked for, had also invested heavily to assist the Earl of March.5

Richard Broket Citizen and Fuller of St Martin Outwych 1454

Richard Broket was a Citizen of London, a member of the Fullers’ Company, with an apprentice and a widower at the time of his death. This suggests a birth 1390-1410 and completion of apprenticeship 1411-31. Richard would most likely have lived and worked in London c 1400-54. No Citizen record has been found for Richard; few have survived this early.

Fullers were an important link in the wool production chain. They cleaned or thickened cloth by treading or beating it in large brass pots. Richard’s testament was written 29 Aug 1454, proved 6 Sep 1454.

Thomas Broket of the Exchequer, Westminster 1399-1435

Thomas Broket was Remembrancer to the Treasurer in the Exchequer, Westminster. He was Lord of the manor in Appleton, Yorkshire. Further details here.

William Broket of the Exchequer, Westminster 1433

William Broket worked as a Clerk in the Exchequer in Westminster. He had good contacts: he served at least 3 justices —his ‘Maisters’ John Martyn, John Cottesmore, and William Paston—who advised him on a matter in the case brought by Danvers. The Master of the Rolls, Gerard de la Hay, had also arranged for him to gain access to the records in the Tower. The Master of the Rolls at that time was the guardian of all charters, patents, etc, entered upon parchment rolls, and the adviser and most important assistant to the Lord Chancellor in the old Court of Chancery.6 To have had this man’s help William must have had some influence. William was also clearly well educated—to have been a Clerk he would have been in minor orders—and he used his own seal for letters.

William in all likelihood was the son of Thomas Broket, the current Treasurer’s Remembrancer:

  • A position on the staff of the Exchequer for a son of the Remembrancer would have been natural in those days.
  • Someone with the same rare surname would almost definitely be related.
  • Gerard de la Hay, gentilman, came from Spaldington, Yorkshire, only c 15 miles from Bolton Percy. He acted as mainpernors with the same men from York as Thomas Broket: John Aglyon in 1422, John Cerf in 1426 and John Aglyon and John Holme in 1430.7
  • At the time of the Danvers case William probably would have been at least 25 years old, and so born at the latest by 1408. If according to Glover he was an older brother of the Thomas who married Elizabeth ASCHE, then depending how much earlier than 1393 his parents married he could have been born any time between say 1390-95 rather than 1408. This would make him aged 38-43 at the time of this 1433 case, which is feasible. If Harley 807 was not correct, then in 1433 he would have been aged anywhere between 25-40.
  • Two years previously it was most likely William who was granted property in York by the Treasurer. This was while Thomas was Treasurer’s Remembrancer.

It was probably he also, who as William Broket, Gentleman, stood surety for Michael Thomas, Brewer, defendant in a Court of Common Pleas case in Easter term 1428 against an allegation that he assaulted Gilbert Burdeux with force and arms at London.8 Other sureties for the defendant were John Boure, John Holme Gentleman, and Thomas Ardern Gentleman.

In 1433 he was found guilty of tampering with official documents in an action brought by Robert Danvers. It was a high-level case concerning the integrity of Government records and was heard before the Lord Chancellor of England in person in the Star Chamber in Westminster. Danvers won the case and William was banned for life from working with the king’s records. No further record of him has been found.

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2. 16th C

Three Merchant Citizens of London are recorded—a Baker and a Goldsmith at the beginning of the century, originally from Northumberland, and a Cheesemonger in Southwark at the end—probably from Hertfordshire roots. This Southwark Merchant generated the first traceable London Broket clan. Young Brokets sent for apprenticeships tended to stay, eldest sons who came for schooling at the Inns of Court returned to country residences. Meanwhile throughout the century members of the Hertfordshire clan had dealings in London, especially the MPs and Sheriffs.

  1. Robert, Baker, City d 1533
  2. Thomas, Cheesemonger, Southwark m 1595
  3. William, Goldsmith, City d 1536

Robert, Baker, City d 1533

One of two Broket brothers born in Alnham. Northumberland, who became Citizens of London and for whom a number of records survive. Their Wills mention several relatives but no surviving children of their own. Further details here.

Thomas Broket of Southwark ?bap 1569 d c 1618

Thomas, who married 1595, was the progenitor of a London merchant clan flourishing in Southwark for more than a century. Gray produced a fine, unpublished pedigree of this clan in 1998. Thomas was a Citizen and Fishmonger of London, and like his son and grandsons after him was a Cheesemonger by trade. In the record of his son Joseph’s christening in 1600 Thomas was called “Chaundler”.

Freedom to Livery Companies usually came soon after completion of an apprenticeship, which was normally arranged to expire at 21.9 So Thomas probably completed his apprenticeship c 1590, but there are no separate Cheesemonger Apprenticeship records. The 1st index of admissions to freedom of the Fishmonger Company dates from 1593, but it doesn’t include Thomas. He probably therefore gained his freedom 1591 or 92. The Quarterage Books date from 1610, by which time Thomas was a Yeoman of the Company, paying quarterly membership fees of 20d for 1610-3, 32d for 1614-5 and 24d for 1616-8,10 but was registered dead for 1618-2.11

Thomas was in all probability from a cadet Wheathampstead line—that of Robert Gent of Bramfield:

  • Becoming a Merchant in London was often the career path of younger sons of the gentry.
  • Considerable paternal backing would have been needed to be apprenticed to a Cheesemonger, whose Livery Company was one of the most influential in London.
  • The Hertfordshire Grouping were the only Brokets in those days with the necessary funds.
  • Thomas’ dates fit Thomas, younger son of the Suffolk family of Robert Gent of Bramfield, otherwise unaccounted for.
  • John, 2nd s/o of John Gent of Codicote, Thomas’ kinsman, became a Fishmongers’ apprentice 1615.12
  • Thomas was a Broket name at the time.
  • Brokets are first recorded in the St Olave’s registers well after they began. They were incomers there at least.

Thomas married Ann PAR 2 Oct 1595 St George, Botolph Lane, London. After the early death of his eldest son he married his 2nd son to a Merchant’s daughter with connections to the Rasing and Harvard families. Children:

  1. Abigall, bap 25 Jul 1596 St Olave’s, Southwark
  2. John, bap 16 Jul 1598 St Olave’s
  3. Joseph of Southwark, Cheesemonger, bap 19 Oct 1600 St Olave’s.
  4. Thomas of Southwark, Citizen and Pewterer of London, bap 6 Mar 1602/3 St Olave’s. Pewterers made table-ware of an alloy of tin, widely used by those who could not afford plate but did not need to rely entirely on wooden trenchers.13 Thomas married twice. His 1st wife, name unknown, had 2 daughters Sarah, the 1st bap 17 Jun 1632/3 St Saviour’s Southwark who d an infant, the 2nd bap 19 Mar 1636/7 St Saviour’s, mentioned in father’s Will as an only child. His 2nd wife, Leah, widow of … MARIAT14 had 1 daughter Abigall, bap 9 Jun 1642 St Saviour’s, d an infant. Thomas’ Will was written 5 Mar 1652/3, proved 7 May 1653, wife Leah still living.15
  5. Elizabeth, bap 25 Jan 1606/7 St Olave’s. Married … TOMLINSON. Mentioned in will of brother Thomas 1652/3.

William Broket, Goldsmith, City d 1536

One of two Broket brothers born in Alnham. Northumberland, who became Citizens of London and for whom a number of records survive. Their Wills mention several relatives but no surviving children of their own. Further details here.

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3. Singletons

1551 3 Aug: Isabell Brokett married Richard PECKERED in St Mary Le Bow, London.16
1552 26 Jun: John Brockett married Margaret PORTER in St Margaret, Westminster.
1554-5 11 Oct and 8 Feb: Two Chancery Orders in an action brought by Henry Brockett, Roger Gray, John Gibson and others against Richard Lisle.17 The original complaint is unknown, as is Henry. The orders give no clue. “The name Henry does not seem to have been favoured much by the early Brocketts.”18
1560: Ann Brokett married John BURLAS in All Hallows, Bread St.19
1576: John Brocket married Margery SLEWRIGHT in Bp, London.20
1578 25 Jan: Elizabeth Brukett married Thomas HARDING in St Mary The Virgin Aldermanbury, London.
1593 3 Feb: George Brockett s/o John and … was baptised in St Giles Cripplegate, London.

Page Last Updated: October 10, 2023


For full bibliographical details please see the sections Publications or Glossary.


[1] Source: Jonathan Mackman and Matthew Stevens, 'CP40/639, rot. 107d: Michaelmas term 1420', in Court of Common Pleas: the National Archives, Cp40 1399-1500 (London, 2010), (accessed 8 Sep 2018), originally published by Centre for Metropolitan History, London, 2010.

[2] Source: Jonathan Mackman and Matthew Stevens, 'CP40/579, rot. 131: Michaelmas term 1405', in Court of Common Pleas: the National Archives, Cp40 1399-1500 (London, 2010), (accessed 8 Sep 2018), originally published by Centre for Metropolitan History, London, 2010.

[3] Devon 1837 p 324f.

[4] TNA E403/614 m1, 4 items up from he bottom, image photographed at TNA 9 Oct 2023, cleaned of surrounding writing, and reproduced by kind permission of the National Archives licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.

[5] Pugh 1988 p 118f.

[6] Macmillan Encyclopedia.

[7] Letters Patent 1422-30, pp 20, 171, 301.

[8] Source: Jonathan Mackman and Matthew Stevens, 'CP40/6369, rot. 094: Easter term 1428', in Court of Common Pleas: the National Archives, Cp40 1399-1500 (London, 2010), (accessed 8 Sep 2018), originally published by Centre for Metropolitan History, London, 2010.

[9] Haskett-Smith 1916 p 3.

[10] Guildhall Library ms 5578A/1 ff 10, 13, 20, 7.

[11] Guildhall Library ms 5578A/1 f 8.

[12] Guildhall Library ms 5576/1 p 8.

[13] Palliser 1979 p 165.

[14] Marriage licence 22 Jul 1640 London.

[15] PCC.

[16] Boyd's Marriage Index.

[17] TNA C33/11 of Michaelmas and Hilary 1 & 2 Philip & Mary. Available on AALT: images 9711 and 9809. Thanks to David Bethell for this reference.

[18] Communication from David Bethell 6 Apr 2019.

[19] Boyd's Marriage Index.

[20] Boyd's Marriage Index.

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