Monument record MYO3669 - St Nicholas Leper Hospital

Summary

Probably founded during Henry I’s reign (1100-35), it remained in the patronage of the monarch. The hospital buildings seem still to have been standing in the mid or late 16th century.

Location

Grid reference Centred SE 6167 5129 (109m by 67m)
Map sheet SE65SW
Unitary Authority City of York, North Yorkshire

Map

Type and Period (4)

Full Description

The exact date of foundation is uncertain: in 1291 it was stated that the hospital had been built on land given by Stephen, first Abbot of St. Mary's (1088-1112); but it appears likely that the original grantee was, in fact, Abbot Savary (1132-61) who gave 12 acres of land, a dwelling and yard, a carucate of land near the Foss and 2 acres for a vegetable garden; this gift was confirmed by Abbot Clement (1161-84). There were no remains in 1958 Source 'The sites and remains of the religious houses', A History of the County of York: the City of York (1961), pp. 357-365. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=36374&strquery=St Nicholas Date accessed: 06 December 2012.

One thirteenth-century master of St. Nicholas’, York, admitted thirty-six brethren and sisters, of whom four were received pro Deo, because they were lepers, but the rest for money. This practice was sadly common, and notorious instances might be cited from Lincoln (Holy Innocents’), London (St. Giles’), and Oxford (St. Bartholomew’s)." from Medieval Hospitals of England, Mary Clay Rotha, at http://www.historyfish.net/clay/clay_hospitals_four.html

Probably founded during Henry I’s reign (1100-35), it remained in the patronage of the monarch. Between 1132 and 1161 Abbot Savary gave to the hospital 12 acres of land, a dwelling and a yard, a carucate of land near the Foss and 2 acres for a vegetable garden. (A carucate was between 60 and 180 acres,
probably in’this case nearer the former.) It was the most important of the four leper hospitals of York - the other three were St Eligius (St Loy) at Monk Bridge, St Helen’s ‘Hospital at Fishergate and St Katherine’s Hospital at Scarcroft Road-and could accommodate up to 40 people.
The hospital owned various parcels of land. The land near the Foss was in Tang Hall Fields. The hospital also owned North Field which was the cause of a major dispute in 1484 between the mayor and the citizens of York. Richard Ill requested that the common rights of the field should be given
up, and the mayor’s actions resulted in a riot by the citizens.
The city eventually acquired the field in 1553. The hospital also acquired lands after a dispute with Kirkham Priory concerning
St Peter le Willows church. The hospital was still receiving rent from the priory for the land in 1357. The hospital also owned a windmill which stood near the present day entrance to Tang Hall Lane.

Although there is very little documentary evidence regarding the buildings of the hospital, various inquiries into the conduct of the brethren, sisters and inmates survive. A 1291 inquiry relates to 30 years earlier when there had been a master, three lepers and 38 brethren and sisters. The following master, Simon de Wyllardby, admitted 36 sisters, four of them lepers, between 1264 and 1274. This was the first time that the hospital admitted some fee payers (who paid 20 marks each). The price of admittance rose under the next master, Robert de Sancto Lawrence, who admitted one
brother and two sisters for 60 marks each, the money being used to meet the requirements of the hospital.
In 1303 William Greenfield, Chancellor of England, made a visitation of the hospital. One of the injunctions stated that the brothers and sisters were not to dwell together under the same roof and cloister, and were not to meet together at unseemly times or in secret places.

The hospital later annexed to Holy Trinity, Micklegate, and the prior of Holy Trinity became the master of the hospital. The hospital buildings seem still to have been standing in the mid or late 16th century (YAT INTERIM 1994).

NMR sources:

VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION OS 1/1250, 1962.
2 VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION Md. Rel. Houses,1953,p.323, (Knowles & Hadcock)
3 VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION VCH,York City,1961,p.365. (Allison)
4 Field Investigators Comments F1 RL 04-JUN-63


YAT, 1994, INTERIM 19, 19/1 (Serial). SYO2659.

NMR, 2019, NMR data (Digital archive). SYO2214.

YAT, nd, 148 Lawrence Street (Unpublished document). SYO1359.

Sources/Archives (3)

  • --- Unpublished document: YAT. nd. 148 Lawrence Street.
  • --- Digital archive: NMR. 2019. NMR data.
  • --- Serial: YAT. 1994. INTERIM 19. 1-4. 19/1.

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (4)

Record last edited

Sep 16 2021 3:28PM

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