Ancestry.com. William of Hoo Letter-Book, 1280-1294 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2003.Original data: Gransden, Antonia, ed.. The Letter-Book of William of Hoo Sacrist of Bury St Edmunds 1280-1294. Suffolk, England: Suffolk Records Society, 1963.
This database contains the letter-book of William of Hoo, the sacrist of Bury St. Edmunds from 1280 to 1294. As explained in the introduction, the sacrist owned many manors and was, as the Abbot's deputy, virtually lord of the borough of Bury St. Edmunds. His duties included, but were not limited to, drawing the rents, tolls, and other profits of the borough; presiding over the portmanmoot and borough court; being in charge of the song school, grammar school, and mint; and being responsible for enforcing the assizes of weights and measures, and bread and ale; and performing the functions of the archdeacon. This book is a cross between a formulary and a letter-book. It is a formulary in the sense that it contains some fifty-six entries that are pure forms where there are blanks filled in by letters, usually in alphabetical order, rather than the names of people and places, or dates, so that if such a form needed to be used the appropriate information could be filled in the appropriate place. It is a letter-book in the sense that it contains sixty-three entries from William of Hoo's correspondence. Most of these are letters from him, but there are some that were written to him, and a few that relate to him. The subject of most of these letters involves the duties of the sacrist. This database could be helpful for historians seeking to learn more about ecclesiastical jurisdiction in the Catholic Church in the late thirteenth century or for researchers with ancestors from Suffolk who attended Bury St. Edmunds and would have been affected by the events surrounding the church.