A bailiff is a manager, overseer or custodian. Bailiffs are of various kinds and their offices and duties vary greatly. Another official sometimes referred to. In the Holy Roman Empire a similar function was performed by the Amtmann. Bailiff was the term used by the Normans for what the Saxons had called a reeve: the officer responsible for executing the decisions of a court; the duty of the bailiff would thus include serving summonses and orders, executing all warrants issued out of the corresponding court. The district within which the bailiff operated was called his bailiwick to the present day. Bailiffs were outsiders and free men, that is, they were not from the bailiwick for which they were responsible. Throughout Norman England, the Saxon and Norman populations mixed, reeve came to be limited to shire-level courts, while bailiff was used in relation to the lower courts. Bailiff referred to the officer executing the decisions of manorial courts, the hundred courts. In Scotland a bailie was the chief officer of a barony, in the Channel Islands they were the principal civil officers.
With the introduction of justices of the peace, magistrates' courts acquired their own bailiffs. Courts were not only concerned with legal matters, decided administrative matters for the area within their jurisdiction. A bailiff of a manor, would oversee the manor's lands and buildings, collect its rents, manage its accounts, run its farms. In the 19th century, the administrative functions of courts were replaced by the creation of elected local authorities; the term bailiff is retained as a title by the chief officers of various towns and the keepers of royal castles, such as the High Bailiff of Westminster and the Bailiff of Dover Castle. In Scotland, bailie now refers to a municipal officer corresponding to an English alderman. In the 20th century, the court system in England was drastically re-organised, with the assize courts taking some of the powers of the shire courts, becoming the High Court of Justice; the High Court acquired the sheriffs, the county courts the bailiffs. Bailiffs were removable by the Lord Chancellor.
A bailiff could, for practical reasons, delegate his responsibilities, in regard to some particular court instruction, to other individuals. As the population expanded, the need for the services of a bailiff arose from financial disputes. By Shakespeare's time, they had acquired the nickname bum-bailiffs because they followed debtors closely behind them. To avoid confusion with their underlings, the County Courts Act 1888 renamed bailifs as high bailiffs; this act formally acknowledged right of the high bailiffs to appoint under-bailiffs as they wished, establishing that the high bailiffs retain ultimate responsibility for their actions. The High Bailiff became a purely ceremonial role, the court's clerk liaising with under-bailiffs directly; the Law of Distress Amendment Act 1888 enacts that no person may act as an under-bailiff to levy any distress for rent unless he is authorized by a county court judge to act as an under-bailiff. The County Courts Act 1888 restricted the hours an under-bailiff could execute a possession warrant, to only be between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m..
It limited the ability to bring a legal complaint against a bailiff. In the Channel Islands the bailiff is the first civil officer in each of the two bailiwicks, he is appointed by the Crown, holds office until retirement. He presides as a judge in the royal court, takes the opinions of the jurats; the bailiff in each island must, be a qualified lawyer. In England and Wales, there are a number of offices either formally titled, or referred to, as "bailiffs"; some of these bailiffs are concerned with executing the orders of the courts around the collection of debts, some exercise semi-official supervisory powers over certain activities. Those concerned with the execution of court orders are referred to as bailiffs, although reforms to the law in 2014 have renamed all these positions to alternative titles. With the 19th century renaming of bailiffs to high bailiff, their under-bailiffs came to be referred to as bailiffs themselves; the powers and responsibilities of these bailiffs depend on which type of court they take orders from.
In emulation of these responsibilities, a number of roles established by 19th century statute laws have been named bailiffs, despite not having a connection to a court. Civilian enforcement officers are employees of Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunals Service, can seize and sell goods to recover money owed under a fine and community penalty notice, execute warrants of arrest, committal and control; these functions can be carried out by employees of private companies a
Gentry are "well-born and well-bred people" of high social class in the past. In the United Kingdom, the term gentry refers to the landed gentry, the majority of the land-owning social class who were armigerous, but did not have titles of nobility. Gentry, in its widest connotation, refers to people of good social position connected to landed estates, upper levels of the clergy, "gentle" families of long descent who never obtained the official right to bear a coat of arms; the historical term gentry by itself, so Peter Coss argues, is a construct that historians have applied loosely to rather different societies. Any particular model may not fit a specific society, yet a single definition remains desirable. Linguistically, the word gentry arose to identify the social stratum created by the small number, by the standards of Continental Europe, of the Peerage of England, of the parts of Britain, where nobility and titles are inherited by a single person, rather than the family, as usual in Europe.
Before creation of the gentry, there were analogous traditional social elites. The adjective patrician describes the governing elites in a medieval metropolis, such as those of the free cities of Italy, the free imperial cities of Germany and Switzerland, the Hanseatic League, which were different from the gentry; the Indo-Europeans who settled Europe and Western Asia and the Indian subcontinent conceived their societies to be ordered in a tripartite fashion, the three parts being castes. Castes came to be further divided as a result of greater specialisation; the "classic" formulation of the caste system as described by Georges Dumézil was that of a priestly or religiously occupied caste, a warrior caste, a worker caste. Dumézil divided the Proto-Indo-Europeans into three categories: sovereignty and productivity, he further subdivided sovereignty into two complementary sub-parts. One part was formal and priestly, but rooted in this world; the other was powerful and priestly, but rooted in the "other", the supernatural and spiritual world.
The second main division was connected with the use of force, the military, war. There was a third group, ruled by the other two, whose role was productivity: herding and crafts; this system of caste roles can be seen in the castes which flourished on the Indian subcontinent and amongst the Italic peoples. Examples of the Indo-European castes: Indo-Iranian – Brahmin/Athravan, Kshatriyas/Rathaestar, Vaishyas Roman – Flamines, Quirites Celtic – Druids, Plebes Anglo-Saxon – Gebedmen, Weorcmen Slavic – Volkhvs, Krestyanin/Smerd Nordic – Earl, Thrall Greece – Eupatridae, Demiurgi Greece – Homoioi, HelotsKings were born out of the warrior or noble class. Emperor Constantine convoked the First Council of Nicaea in 325 whose Nicene Creed included belief in "one holy catholic and apostolic Church". Emperor Theodosius I made Nicene Christianity the state church of the Roman Empire with the Edict of Thessalonica of 380. After the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century, there emerged no single powerful secular government in the West, but there was a central ecclesiastical power in Rome, the Catholic Church.
In this power vacuum, the Church rose to become the dominant power in the West. In essence, the earliest vision of Christendom was a vision of a Christian theocracy, a government founded upon and upholding Christian values, whose institutions are spread through and over with Christian doctrine; the Catholic Church's peak of authority over all European Christians and their common endeavours of the Christian community—for example, the Crusades, the fight against the Moors in the Iberian Peninsula and against the Ottomans in the Balkans—helped to develop a sense of communal identity against the obstacle of Europe's deep political divisions. The classical heritage flourished throughout the Middle Ages in both the Byzantine Greek East and Latin West. In Plato's ideal state there are three major classes, representative of the idea of the "tripartite soul", expressive of three functions or capacities of the human soul: "appetites", "the spirited element" and "reason" the part that must guide the soul to truth.
Will Durant made a convincing case that certain prominent features of Plato's ideal community were discernible in the organization and effectiveness of "the" Medieval Church in Europe: For a thousand years Europe was ruled by an order of guardians like that, visioned by our philosopher. During the Middle Ages it was customary to classify the population of Christendom into laboratores and oratores; the last group, though small in number, monopolized the instruments and opportunities of culture, ruled with unlimited sway half of the most powerful continent on the globe. The clergy, like Plato's guardians, were placed in authority... by their talent as shown in ecclesiastical studies and administration, by their disposition to a life of meditation and simplicity, and... by the influence of their relatives with the powers of state and church. In the latter half of the period in which they ruled, the clergy were as free from family cares as Plato could desire... Celibacy was
Usury is the practice of making unethical or immoral monetary loans that unfairly enrich the lender. Usury meant interest of any kind. A loan may be considered usurious because of other factors. In some Christian societies, in many Islamic societies today, charging any interest at all would be considered usury. Someone who practices usury can be called a usurer, but a more common term in contemporary English is loan shark; the term may be used in a moral sense—condemning, taking advantage of others' misfortunes—or in a legal sense where interest rates may be regulated by law. Some cultures have regarded charging any interest for loans as sinful; some of the earliest known condemnations of usury come from the Vedic texts of India. Similar condemnations are found in religious texts from Buddhism, Judaism and Islam. At times, many nations from ancient Greece to ancient Rome have outlawed loans with any interest. Though the Roman Empire allowed loans with restricted interest rates, the Catholic Church in medieval Europe banned the charging of interest at any rate.
Banking during the Roman Empire was different from modern banking. During the Principate, most banking activities were conducted by private individuals who operated as large banking firms do today. Anybody that had any available liquid assets and wished to lend it out could do so; the annual rates of interest on loans varied in the range of 4–12 percent, but when the interest rate was higher, it was not 15–16 percent but either 24 percent or 48 percent. The apparent absence of intermediate rates suggests that the Romans may have had difficulty calculating the interest on anything other than mathematically convenient rates, they quoted them on a monthly basis, the most common rates were multiples of twelve. Monthly rates tended to range from simple fractions to 3–4 percent because lenders used Roman numerals. Moneylending during this period was a matter of private loans advanced to persons persistently in debt or temporarily so until harvest time, it was undertaken by exceedingly rich men prepared to take on a high risk if the profit looked good.
Investment was always regarded as a matter of seeking personal profit on a large scale. Banking was of the small, back-street variety, run by the urban lower-middle class of petty shopkeepers. By the 3rd century, acute currency problems in the Empire drove such banking into decline; the rich who were in a position to take advantage of the situation became the moneylenders when the increasing tax demands in the last declining days of the Empire crippled and destroyed the peasant class by reducing tenant-farmers to serfs. It was evident; the First Council of Nicaea, in 325, forbade clergy from engaging in usury. At the time, usury was interest of any kind, the canon forbade the clergy to lend money at interest rates as low as 1 percent per year. Ecumenical councils applied this regulation to the laity. Lateran III decreed that persons who accepted interest on loans could receive neither the sacraments nor Christian burial. Pope Clement V made the belief in the right to usury a heresy in 1311, abolished all secular legislation which allowed it.
Pope Sixtus V condemned the practice of charging interest as "detestable to God and man, damned by the sacred canons, contrary to Christian charity." Theological historian John Noonan argues that "the doctrine was enunciated by popes, expressed by three ecumenical councils, proclaimed by bishops, taught unanimously by theologians."Certain negative historical renditions of usury carry with them social connotations of perceived "unjust" or "discriminatory" lending practices. The historian Paul Johnson, comments: Most early religious systems in the ancient Near East, the secular codes arising from them, did not forbid usury; these societies regarded inanimate matter as alive, like plants and people, capable of reproducing itself. Hence if you lent'food money', or monetary tokens of any kind, it was legitimate to charge interest. Food money in the shape of olives, seeds or animals was lent out as early as c. 5000 BC, if not earlier.... Among the Mesopotamians, Hittites and Egyptians, interest was legal and fixed by the state.
But the Hebrew took a different view of the matter. The Hebrew Bible regulates interest taking. Interest can be charged to strangers but not between Hebrews. Deuteronomy 23:19 Thou shalt not lend upon interest to thy brother: interest of money, interest of victuals, interest of any thing, lent upon interest. Deuteronomy 23:20 Unto a foreigner thou mayest lend upon interest. Israelites were forbidden to charge interest on loans made to other Israelites, but allowed to charge interest on transactions with non-Israelites, as the latter were amongst the Israelites for the purpose of business anyway. Debt was to be avoided and not used to finance consumption, but only taken on when in need. Johnson contends that the
A constable is a person holding a particular office, most in criminal law enforcement. The office of constable can vary in different jurisdictions. A constable is the rank of an officer within the police. Other people may be granted powers of a constable without holding this title; the title comes from the Latin comes stabuli and originated from the Roman Empire. The title was imported to the monarchies of medieval Europe, in many countries developed into a high military rank and great officer of State. Most constables in modern jurisdictions are law enforcement officers. However, in the Channel Islands a constable is an elected office-holder at the parish level. A constable could refer to a castellan, the officer charged with the defense of a castle. Today, there is a Constable of the Tower of London. An equivalent position is that of Marshal, which derives from Old High German marah "horse" and schalh "servant", meant "stable keeper", which has a similar etymology. In Australia, as in the United Kingdom, constable is the lowest rank in most police services.
It is categorised into the following from lowest to highest: probationary constable, constable first class, senior constable, leading senior constable. These variations depend on the individual state/territory police force in question. Senior constable refers to a police officer of the rank above constable and is denoted by way of two chevrons/stripes; the New South Wales Police Force has three grades of senior constable, namely senior constable, incremental senior constable and leading senior constable. A senior constable is senior to a constable but junior to an incremental senior constable. Promotion to senior constable can occur after a minimum of five years service, one year as a probationary constable in addition to four years as constable and upon passing probity checks and an exam. Incremental senior constable is attained after ten years of service automatically. One is appointed the rank of leading senior constable on a qualification basis but must have a minimum of seven years service amongst other criteria in order to be eligible.
Leading senior constable is a specialist position of which there are limited allocated numbers within any section/unit or local area command. If an officer is transferred to another duty type or station, the officer is relieved of the position of leading senior constable, it is a position for field training officers who oversee the training and development of inexperienced probationary constables or constables. Within Victoria Police, a senior constable is the rank above a constable while above a senior constable is a leading senior constable; when first introduced into Victoria Police, the leading senior constable was a classification not a rank, somewhat like "detective". Leading senior constables were appointed to assist in the training and mentoring of more junior members; the last round of wage negotiations however saw leading senior constable become a rank in its own right, one that a lot of members will pass on their way from constable to sergeant though it is not necessary and is permissible to be promoted to sergeant direct from senior constable.
The general form of address for both senior constable and leading senior constable is "senior" and this is acceptable in courts. In Canada, as in the United Kingdom, constable is the lowest rank with most law enforcement services, including the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. In Newfoundland the provincial police are the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary whereby all officers are addressed by the term "constable". In addition, the chief officers of some municipal police services in Canada, notably Vancouver Police Department, carry the title of chief constableIn Canadian French, constable is translated to agent, except in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police where it is translated as gendarme.) Appointments can further be separated into: Special constables RCMP special constables are appointed for specific skills, for example, aboriginal language skills. They are peace officers under the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act. Outside of the RCMP, special constables are not police officers but are appointed to serve certain law enforcement functions.
For example, SPCA agents or court/jail security officers. Auxiliary constables, or reserve constables, are volunteers with a policing agency, they only have peace officer status when engaged in specific authorized tasks only. Provincial civil constables deal with matters of a civil nature. In the Danish armed forces the ranks "Konstabel", "Overkonstabel" and "Overkonstabel af 1. Grad" are used for professional enlisted soldiers and airmen; the rank is more or less equal to a Private, Private 1st class and Lance corporal but higher than the rank "menig" which translates into "private" and only applies to drafted soldiers. In the Finnish Police, the lowest rank of police
The shilling is a unit of currency used in Austria, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, United States and other British Commonwealth countries. The shilling is used as a currency in four east African countries: Kenya, Tanzania and Somalia, it is the proposed currency that the east African community plans to introduce. The word shilling comes from old English "Scilling", a monetary term meaning twentieth of a pound, from the Proto-Germanic root skiljaną meaning'to separate, divide.' The word "Scilling" is mentioned in the earliest recorded Germanic law codes, those of Æthelberht of Kent. Slang terms for the old shilling coins include "bob" and "hog". While the derivation of "bob" is uncertain, John Camden Hotten in his 1864 Slang Dictionary says the original version was "bobstick" and speculates that it may be connected with Sir Robert Walpole. One abbreviation for shilling is s, it was represented by a solidus symbol, which may have stood for a long s or ſ, thus 1/9 would be one shilling and ninepence.
A price with no pence was sometimes written with a solidus and a dash: 11/–. The solidus symbol is still used for the Kenyan shilling, rather than sh. During the Great Recoinage of 1816, the mint was instructed to coin one troy pound of standard silver into 66 shillings, or its equivalent in other denominations; this set the weight of the shilling, its subsequent decimal replacement 5 new pence coin, at 87.2727 grains or 5.655 grams from 1816 until 1990, when a new smaller 5p coin was introduced. In the past, the English world has had various myths about the shilling. One myth was that it was deemed to be the value of a cow in a sheep elsewhere. A shilling was a coin used in England from the reign of Henry VII; the shilling continued in use after the Acts of Union of 1707 created a new United Kingdom from the Kingdoms of England and Scotland, under Article 16 of the Articles of Union, a common currency for the new United Kingdom was created. The term shilling was in use in Scotland from early medieval times.
The common currency created in 1707 by Article 16 of the Articles of Union continued in use until decimalisation in 1971. In the traditional pounds and pence system, there were 20 shillings per pound and 12 pence per shilling, thus there were 240 pence in a pound. Three coins denominated in multiple shillings were in circulation at this time, they were: two shillings, which adopted the value of 10 new pence at decimalisation. At decimalisation in 1971, the shilling coin was superseded by the new five-pence piece, of identical size and weight and had the same value, inherited the shilling's slang name of a bob. Shillings remained in circulation until the five pence coin was reduced in size in 1991. Between 1701 and the unification of the currencies in 1825, the Irish shilling was valued at 13 pence and known as the "black hog", as opposed to the 12-pence English shillings which were known as "white hogs". In the Irish Free State and Republic of Ireland the shilling coin was issued as scilling in Irish.
It was worth 1/20th of an Irish pound, was interchangeable at the same value to the British coin, which continued to be used in Northern Ireland. The coin featured a bull on the reverse side; the first minting, from 1928 until 1941, contained 75% silver, more than the equivalent British coin. The original Irish shilling coin ) was withdrawn from circulation on 1 January 1993, when a smaller five pence coin was introduced. Australian shillings, twenty of which made up one Australian pound, were first issued in 1910, with the Australian coat of arms on the reverse and King Edward VII on the face; the coat of arms design was retained through the reign of King George V until a new ram's head design was introduced for the coins of King George VI. This design continued until the last year of issue in 1963. In 1966, Australia's currency was decimalised and the shilling was replaced by a ten cent coin, where 10 shillings made up one Australian dollar; the slang term for a shilling coin in Australia was "deener".
The slang term for a shilling as currency unit was "bob", the same as in the United Kingdom. After 1966, shillings continued to circulate, as they were replaced by 10-cent coins of the same size and weight. New Zealand shillings, twenty of which made up one New Zealand pound, were first issued in 1933 and featured the image of a Maori warrior carrying a taiaha "in a warlike attitude" on the reverse. In 1967, New Zealand's currency was decimalised and the shilling was replaced by a ten cent coin of the same size and weight. Ten cent coins minted through the remainder of the 1960s included the legend "ONE SHILLING" on the reverse. Smaller 10-cent coins were introduced in 2006. Shillings were used in Malta, prior to decimalisation in 1972, had a face value of five Maltese cents. In British Ceylon, an shilling was equivalent to eight fanams. With the replacement of the rixdollar by the rupee in 1852, a shilling was deemed to be equivalent to half a rupee. On the decimalisation of the currency
Church of England
The Church of England is the established church of England. The Archbishop of Canterbury is the most senior cleric, although the monarch is the supreme governor; the Church of England is the mother church of the international Anglican Communion. It traces its history to the Christian church recorded as existing in the Roman province of Britain by the third century, to the 6th-century Gregorian mission to Kent led by Augustine of Canterbury; the English church renounced papal authority when Henry VIII failed to secure an annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon in 1534. The English Reformation accelerated under Edward VI's regents, before a brief restoration of papal authority under Queen Mary I and King Philip; the Act of Supremacy 1558 renewed the breach, the Elizabethan Settlement charted a course enabling the English church to describe itself as both catholic and reformed: catholic in that it views itself as a part of the universal church of Jesus Christ in unbroken continuity with the early apostolic church.
This is expressed in its emphasis on the teachings of the early Church Fathers, as formalised in the Apostles', Athanasian creeds. Reformed in that it has been shaped by some of the doctrinal principles of the 16th-century Protestant Reformation, in particular in the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion and the Book of Common Prayer. In the earlier phase of the English Reformation there were both Catholic martyrs and radical Protestant martyrs; the phases saw the Penal Laws punish Roman Catholic and nonconforming Protestants. In the 17th century, the Puritan and Presbyterian factions continued to challenge the leadership of the Church which under the Stuarts veered towards a more catholic interpretation of the Elizabethan Settlement under Archbishop Laud and the rise of the concept of Anglicanism as the via media. After the victory of the Parliamentarians the Prayer Book was abolished and the Presbyterian and Independent factions dominated; the Episcopacy was abolished. The Restoration restored the Church of England and the Prayer Book.
Papal recognition of George III in 1766 led to greater religious tolerance. Since the English Reformation, the Church of England has used a liturgy in English; the church contains several doctrinal strands, the main three known as Anglo-Catholic and Broad Church. Tensions between theological conservatives and progressives find expression in debates over the ordination of women and homosexuality; the church includes both liberal and conservative members. The governing structure of the church is based on dioceses, each presided over by a bishop. Within each diocese are local parishes; the General Synod of the Church of England is the legislative body for the church and comprises bishops, other clergy and laity. Its measures must be approved by both Houses of Parliament. According to tradition, Christianity arrived in Britain in the 1st or 2nd century, during which time southern Britain became part of the Roman Empire; the earliest historical evidence of Christianity among the native Britons is found in the writings of such early Christian Fathers as Tertullian and Origen in the first years of the 3rd century.
Three Romano-British bishops, including Restitutus, are known to have been present at the Council of Arles in 314. Others attended the Council of Serdica in 347 and that of Ariminum in 360, a number of references to the church in Roman Britain are found in the writings of 4th century Christian fathers. Britain was the home of Pelagius. While Christianity was long established as the religion of the Britons at the time of the Anglo-Saxon invasion, Christian Britons made little progress in converting the newcomers from their native paganism. In 597, Pope Gregory I sent the prior of the Abbey of St Andrew's from Rome to evangelise the Angles; this event is known as the Gregorian mission and is the date the Church of England marks as the beginning of its formal history. With the help of Christians residing in Kent, Augustine established his church at Canterbury, the capital of the Kingdom of Kent, became the first in the series of Archbishops of Canterbury in 598. A archbishop, the Greek Theodore of Tarsus contributed to the organisation of Christianity in England.
The Church of England has been in continuous existence since the days of St Augustine, with the Archbishop of Canterbury as its episcopal head. Despite the various disruptions of the Reformation and the English Civil War, the Church of England considers itself to be the same church, more formally organised by Augustine. While some Celtic Christian practices were changed at the Synod of Whitby, the Christian in the British Isles was under papal authority from earliest times. Queen Bertha of Kent was among the Christians in England who recognised papal authority before Augustine arrived, Celtic Christians were carrying out missionary work with papal approval long before the Synod of Whitby; the Synod of Whitby established the Roman date for Easter and the Roman style of monastic tonsure in England. This meeting of the ecclesiastics with Roman customs with local bishops was summoned in 664 at Saint Hilda's double monastery of Streonshalh called Whitby Abbey, it was presided over by King Oswiu, who made the final ruling.
The final ruling was decided in favor of Roman tradition because St. Peter holds the keys to the gate of Heaven. In 1534, King Henry VIII separated the English Church from Rome. A theological separation had been foreshadowed by various movements within the English Church, such as Lollardy, but the English Reformation gained political support when Henry VIII wanted an a
Shakespeare's Birthplace is a restored 16th-century half-timbered house situated in Henley Street, Stratford-upon-Avon, England, where it is believed that William Shakespeare was born in 1564 and spent his childhood years. It is now a small museum open to the public and a popular visitor attraction and managed by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, it has been referred to as "a Mecca for all lovers of literature". The house itself is simple, but for the late 16th century it would have been considered quite a substantial dwelling. John Shakespeare, William's father, was a glove maker and wool dealer, the house was divided in two parts to allow him to carry out his business from the same premises; the building is not outstanding architecturally, typical of the times was constructed in wattle and daub around a wooden frame. Local oak from the Forest of Arden and blue-grey stone from Wilmcote were used in its construction, while the large fireplaces were made from an unusual combination of early brick and stone, the ground-floor level has stone-flagged floors.
The plan of the building was a simple rectangle. From north-west to south-east, the ground-floor consisted of a parlour with fireplace, an adjoining hall with a large open hearth, a cross passage, a room which served as John Shakespeare's workshop; this arrangement was mirrored on the first-floor by three chambers accessed by a staircase from the hall where the present stairs are sited. Traditionally, the chamber over the parlour is the birthroom. A separate single-bay house, now known as Joan Hart's Cottage, was built onto the north-west end of the house, the present kitchen was added at the rear with a chamber above it. There are differing views concerning the origin of the building, which dates back to the 15th century, but more was built in the mid-16th century. Records show that in 1552 John Shakespeare was fined for leaving a pile of muck outside his home in Henley Street, proving that he resided in a house there at the time. In Jephson's account of Shakespeare's time in Stratford he states that at the time of Shakepeare's birth his father was renting the property and that ten years he was able to purchase two freehold houses in Henley Street.
The house remained in the family until it was handed down for the final time to William Shakespeare’s daughter and, given that he was born in 1564, it is certain that he was born and brought up there. The ownership of the premises passed to William on John Shakespeare's death. However, by that time William owned New Place in Stratford and had no need for the Henley Street premises as a home for himself or his family; the main house was leased to Lewis Hiccox, who converted it into an inn known as the Maidenhead, the small, one-bay house to the north-west was put to residential use. By the time of Shakespeare's death in 1616 it was occupied by Joan Hart, his widowed sister. Under the terms of Shakespeare's will, the ownership of the whole property passed to his elder daughter, Susanna. In 1649 it passed to her only child, in 1670 to Thomas Hart. Hart was the descendant of Shakespeare's sister, whose family had continued as tenants of the smaller house after her death in 1646; the entire property remained in the ownership of the Harts until 1806, when it was sold to a butcher, Thomas Court, who took over the running of the Swan and Maidenhead Inn.
The smaller house remained occupied by Thomas Hornby, another butcher, to whom the Harts had let it when they moved away from Stratford in the 1790s. Mrs Hornby continued as a tenant and custodian of Shakespeare's Birthplace until her rent was increased in 1820. Once the family line had come to an end, the house was allowed to fall into a state of disrepair until a rekindling of interest in the 18th century. Isaac Watts, Charles Dickens, Sir Walter Scott and Thomas Carlyle were among the notables that visited the birthplace and autographed the walls and windows. Many of the signatures still remain on the windowpanes around the house, although the signed walls have long since been painted over. A guest registry book includes the signatures of Lord Byron, Lord Tennyson, John Keats, William Thackeray. Interest in the property again increased when the whole premises were put up for sale on the death of Court's widow in 1846; the American showman P. T. Barnum proposed to buy the home and ship it "brick-by-brick" to the US.
In response, the Shakespeare Birthday Committee was established and, with the help of such luminaries as Dickens, the Committee raised the necessary £3,000 and bought it the following year. Once the Committee had acquired the building, restoration work was able to proceed; the Birthplace formed part of a terrace with houses built either side, the first stage in its conservation was their destruction, thought necessary to avoid the risk of any fire spreading from them to the Birthplace. Old photographs reveal that early in the 19th century, part of the front of the Birthplace was faced with brick; this was an economical alternative to the common practice of replacing timber-framed buildings and rebuilding in brick in 18th century England. Referring to an engraving of 1769 as well as taking into account surviving architectural evidence, a reconstruction carried out by the Trust between 1857 and 1864 restored the outside of the building to its 16th century state. Adjoining the Birthplace is the Shakespeare Centre, a contrasting modern glass and concrete visitors centre which forms the headquarters of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.
The driving force behind its c