PERYS, Richard (d.1422), of Wells, Som.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1386-1421, ed. J.S. Roskell, L. Clark, C. Rawcliffe., 1993
Available from Boydell and Brewer



May 1421

Family and Education

m. bef. 1398, wid. of — of Wells.

Offices Held

Constable of the peace, Wells Mich. 1408-9, 1412-17, 1420-d.; auditor 1411-12.1

Alnager, Dorset 24 June 1415-20.

Apparitor-general to the bp. of Bath and Wells 12 Jan. 1419-?d.2


Perys became a freeman of Wells in 1398 after he had married the widow of another burgess. He provided pledges for three more new freemen subsequently, and also performed several official duties in the borough, for example as a locally appointed collector there of a parliamentary tenth in 1406-7 and 1408-9, when it was his task to record the sums raised. He was also occasionally chosen to arbitrate in local disputes: in December 1415 John Kyng, a Wells tailor, and Richard Setter* entered into a £40 bond with Thomas Kyngesbury, undertaking that Kyng and his wife should abide by the arbitration of Richard Perys, John Horewode I* and certain canons, in a property dispute. Perys, Horewode and Setter all attested a grant made by Kyng the following year, and when Setter filed a suit in Chancery Perys furnished security for him. Perys witnessed the Wells parliamentary election indentures at Ilchester on three occasions: in 1417, 1420 and 1421 (Dec.).3

In July 1415 Perys had been granted the royal subsidy and alnage of cloth in Dorset from midsummer for five years, at an annual farm of 16 13s.4d. However, it does not appear that he himself was engaged in the cloth trade. Rather, his talents and education led to his employment as a minor official. In October 1416, described as ‘literatus’ (indicating that he had received a basic education, at least), he was commissioned by Bishop Bubwith of Bath and Wells to represent him at a judicial hearing at Canterbury, and later, in 1419, the bishop appointed him to the post of apparitor-general throughout the diocese. It was while holding this office that Perys was returned to Parliament, certainly for the first time and quite likely for the second, too. He died shortly before 1 May 1422, when a new constable of the peace had to be elected in Wells to take his place.4

Ref Volumes: 1386-1421

Author: L. S. Woodger


Variants: Peers, Perse, Piers, Pyers.

  • 1. Wells Town Clerk’s Office, convoc. bk. 1378-1450, ff. 176, 193, 198, 200, 206, 209, 212, 225, 230, 233.
  • 2. Reg. Bubwith (Som. Rec. Soc. xlxx), 347.
  • 3. HMC Wells, ii. chs. 540, 543; Wells City Chs. (Som. Rec. Soc. xlvi), 131, 137-8; convoc. bk. ff. 170, 177, 193; C1/5/200; C219/12/2, 4, 6.
  • 4. Reg. Bubwith (Som. Rec. Soc. xxix), 254; ibid. (xxx), 394; convoc. bk. f. 233.