NEWMAN, Robert, of Charlton by Malmesbury, Wilts.
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Family and Education
A member of the minor gentry, Newman lived a short way out from Malmesbury on the road to Cricklade. In July 1400 he obtained an Exchequer lease of a messuage in Christian Malford, a few miles to the south-east of Malmesbury. Seven years later he entered into a recognizance with the King, the conditions of which are not recorded, the penalty for defeasance, however, being £100. In February 1414 he secured a share of the custody of the manor of Charlton (where he lived) together with the fruits of the church of Upchurch, Kent, which belonged to the alien priory of Isle Dieu, for a yearly farm of £46; only for the grant to be revoked on 15 July 1415 when it was established that the properties in question had previously been assigned to Henry IV’s widow. Eight days later, Newman was in more serious trouble: on 23 July a royal commission was ordered to arrest him along with his neighbour, Walter Charlton (for whom he had earlier witnessed a deed at Cobham Week in Devon), and ‘one Coubrigge’ (probably Geoffrey Cowbridge*), and to bring them immediately before the King in person. The nature of their offence remains unknown. Meanwhile, Newman had been associated with William Alexander* as co-patron of the church of Winterbourne Cherborough.1
The last certain record of Newman occurs in 1423, when he entered into a recognizance with John Bird* under a penalty of £6, although he may have been the person who stood surety for the attendance of William Cooke, burgess-elect for Marlborough, in the Parliament of 1426.2