MARCHAUNT, Richard, of Taunton, Som.
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Family and Education
Portreeve, Taunton Mich. 1396-7, 1410-11, 1420-1.1
From 1394 to 1415 Richard paid 8d. a year rent to the bishop of Winchester’s receiver for a plot of land opposite the house of William Marchaunt, his putative father. Like William, he was engaged in the cloth trade, being assessed in 1396-7 for alnage on 53 ‘dozens’ sold locally. He served with his older kinsman in November 1400 on the jury which gave evidence at Taunton with regard to the goods of the late King, Richard II.2 Marchaunt was elected port-reeve of Taunton three times, the second in association with Robert Bathe*, who had enfeoffed him in 1397 in four messuages in the town, to the use of the fraternity of Holy Cross in St. Mary Magdalen church. Bathe’s failure to obtain a royal licence to affect what amounted to an alienation in mortmain, was to involve his friend in a suit in Chancery many years later, in 1429. In the meantime, Marchaunt had been present at the shire court at Ilchester to witness the indenture for the Taunton election to the Parliament of 1410, and in 1415 he attested the will of John Northmore, his fellow Member in both of his Parliaments. He served as co-feoffee with Walter Portman* of seven shops near Smithfield in London, which they were licensed in 1426 to grant to Glastonbury abbey; but for whom they were acting remains uncertain. It may have been the Luttrells of Dunster, with whom both men were connected, Portman quite closely. Richard Marchaunt and his kinsman John II had been witnesses at Taunton in 1423 to an indenture made between Sir Hugh Luttrell* and one of his tenants.3