Charter of liberties to the tinners of Cornwall and Devon, 1201
3 JOHN (1201)
The King to the Archbishops, etc., greeting … John, by the grace of God, King of England, etc., to the archbishops, bishops, abbots, earls, barons, judges, sheriffs, foresters, and to all our bailiffs and faithful people, greeting. Be it known that we have granted that all tin miners of Cornwall and Devon are free of pleas of the natives as long as they work for the profit of our ferm or for the marks for our new tax; for the stannaries are on our demesne. And they may dig for tin, and for turf for smelting it, at all times freely and peaceably without hindrance from any man, on the moors and in the fiefs of bishops, abbots, and earls, as they have been accustomed to do. And they may buy faggots to smelt the tin, without waste of forest, and they may divert streams for their work just as they have been accustomed to do by ancient usage. Nor shall they desist from their work by reason of any summons, except those of the chief warden of the stannaries or his bailiffs. We have granted also that the chief warden of the stannaries and his bailiffs have plenary power over the miners to do justice to them and to hold them to the law. And if it should happen that any of the miners ought to be seized and imprisoned for breach of the law they should be received in our prisons; and if any of them should become a fugitive or outlaw let his chattels be delivered to us by the hands of the warden of the stannaries because the miners are of our ferm and always in our demesne. Moreover, we have granted to the treasurer and the weighers, so that they might be more faithful and attentive to our service in guarding our treasure in market towns, that they shall be quit in all towns in which they stay of aids and tallages as long as they are in our service as treasurers and weighers; for they have and can have nothing else throughout the year for their services to us. Witnesses, etc.