MOYLE, Thomas (d.1413), of Lostwithiel, Cornw.
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Family and Education
m. by 1409, Thomasina, da. and h. of Thomas Folle.1
Portreeve, Lostwithiel Mich. 1389-90.2
The Moyles of Lostwithiel were closely related to those of Bodmin. Indeed, a prominent kinsman of Thomas’s, John Moyle of Bosmaugan in St. Winnow, held property in both towns. Thomas himself was described as ‘of Bodmin’ when, on 10 Nov. 1388, three weeks after the dismissal of the Commons from the Cambridge Parliament, which he had been attending as a representative of Lostwithiel, he went surety at the Exchequer for John Sampford (Member for Barnstaple in the same Parliament); but it was as ‘of Lostwithiel’ that, in the following May, he shared with John Urban* of Helston a lease at the Exchequer of property in Bodmin forfeited by Chief Justice Sir Robert Tresilian†. Meanwhile, in February Moyle was again recorded acting as mainpernor, this time in Chancery, on behalf of John Breton I* of Bodmin, and at the parliamentary elections held in 1399 he was to provide securities for the attendance of the two Bodmin burgesses, John Burgh I and James Halappe.3 Nevertheless, it is clear that he normally lived at Lostwithiel, where members of his family had resided since the early years of the century.4
Thomas may have been the son of Thomas Moyle ‘the elder’ of Lostwithiel. Both men were merchants trading with France and Portugal. It was the younger man who in 1383 had been associated with the mayor of Lostwithiel, John Kendale*, in the detention of the Seinte Marishippe of Gironde and its cargo, an act alleged by a Fowey trader to have been in breach of the truce then in force between England and Brittany. Also with Kendale, he was sued in 1390 by two merchants from Lisbon for a debt of £41 incurred at Bristol. Moyle was the master and probably also the owner of La Charite of Fowey, a vessel in which he shipped wine from Gascony to London. But his principal trading concern was with tin: in April 1394 he brought consignments weighing 1,1048 lbs. to be coined and stamped in the coinage hall at Lostwithiel, and in May and July 1397 further amounts totalling 3,000 lbs., and he was still dealing in this commodity ten years later. It was most likely he who, as ‘Thomas Mule of Lostwithiel’, was among those held responsible in 1403 for the illegal seizure at sea of a Castilian barge laden with iron, allegedly being the captain who, when boarding the barge, had killed one of its crew. The outcome of the affair is uncertain.5
Moyle himself met a violent end. He died from wounds received when he was assaulted by some Lostwithiel men at Bodmin on 14 Jan. 1413. His widow was the defendant in a suit brought at the Launceston assizes in 1428 over a messuage in Lostwithiel, which she claimed as heir to her cousin, Margaret Lowys.6