SNELL, John II, of Winchester, Hants.

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



Family and Education

m. by 1388, Alice.1

Offices Held

Bailiff of the 24, Winchester Mich. 1403-4.2


This John Snell was perhaps the son of another John, an alderman of Winchester in 1370-1 and bailiff of the commons in 1376-7, whose widow, Alice, married Edmund Picard*. He was also probably related to Roger Snell, a merchant residing in the Soke who, in 1378, was said to be wealthier than many of the inhabitants of the city.3 In 1389 our MP was associated with Picard (perhaps his stepfather) in standing bail in Chancery for a Winchester man charged with debt by Sir Philip Popham; and in 1393 at the Hampshire parliamentary elections, held in the city, he went surety for Sir John Sandys. However, he failed to secure admission to the freedom of Winchester until 1397-8. Snell was engaged in the production of cloth. In the year following his admission he sold ten lengths of fabric,4 this being after he had enlarged his business by acquiring from Lucy, widow of Richard Frye*, a tenement in Wongar Street ‘cum omnibus suis pertinenciis et utensilibus eiusdem domus inventis et existentibus in eadem domo’, which had previously belonged to the important local family of Bolour, who were fullers. This property was in addition to an establishment on the south corner of Butlers Lane and Tanner Street, where Snell had lived since about 1388. In 1399 he and his wife conveyed all their real estate in Winchester, along with all their chattels, to Roger Snell of the Soke and the latter’s namesake of Leckford, but retained their Tanner Street residence. In 1403 John was acting as churchwarden in the nearby parish of St. Pancras. At the assizes held at Winchester that year he was fined 30s. for withholding rents due to the abbey of St. Mary, and was later accused of illegally dispossessing the fraternities of St. Peter and St. Mary Kalend of property in the city.5

Snell’s otherwise fairly uneventful career was enlivened in February 1407 when he took out royal letters of protection to travel to Ireland for a year in the service of the lieutenant there, Henry IV’s second son, Thomas of Lancaster. He was still alive ten years later.6

Ref Volumes: 1386-1421

Author: L. S. Woodger


  • 1. Stowe 846, ff. 85, 98.
  • 2. Stowe 846, f. 112; Winchester Coll. mun. 1226.
  • 3. Winchester RO, mayor’s acct. 45 Edw. III; Stowe 846, f. 73v; CCR, 1377-81, p. 46; 1381-5, p. 43; D.J. Keene, Surv. Winchester (Winchester Studies 2), 1351.
  • 4. Stowe 846, f. 74v; CCR, 1389-92, p. 68; C219/9/9; Winchester RO, chamberlains’ acct. 21-22 Ric. II; E101/344/12.
  • 5. Keene, nos. 223, 398, 411, 437, 713; Winchester RO, ct. roll 5 Hen. IV m. 10d; D3; enrolments 34/BC/TC9, m. 11; Stowe 846, f. 110v; JUST 1/1513 m. 7, 1522 m. 12.
  • 6. CPR, 1405-8, p. 295.