Page:The parochial history of Cornwall.djvu/120

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min by prescription was invested with the jurisdiction of a court-leet, (id est,acourt that kept a law-day, or festival,) though the same was not confirmed by a charter or incorporated before King John, A.D. 1216, granted one thereto; whereby he privileged the same with the tribunal also of a mayor, recorder, town clerk, twelve aldermen, and twenty-four common-councilmen, or assistants, who have power to nominate and elect a new mayor annually by the majority of voices, as also members of parliament. The mayor and town clerk, and last preceding mayor, justices of the peace for one year after within the said borough; the town clerk during life. This town and borough is held of the King of Great Britain, and pays annually to the King's Audit at Launceston between five and six pounds per annum rent, beyond the records of time.

By the same charter it was made also one of the towns for coinage of tin, though long since discontinued (see Lostwithiel for the Tinners' Charter); and made also the only staple town in Cornwall where in a public market merchants might carry their goods for wholesale, and whereby the mayor and town clerk also were authorized to take the acknowledge of statute staple bonds between party and party as the law directs.

Now to remove an action depending in this courtleet of Bodmin to any superior court, the writ must be thus directed:

Majori et Communi Clerico Burgi sui de Bodmin, in comitatu Cornubiae, salutem.

The chief men within this town, and within the circumstances aforesaid, are Mr. Philipps, Mr. Bullock, Mr. Hobbs, Mr. Bligh, Mr. Wymond, Mr. May, Mr. Smith, Mr. Tomm.

The precept for electing members of parliament is thus directed: Majori et Burgensibus Burgi sui de Bodmin, &c.