John Man, Tailor

Anti-social behaviour could be a problem even in a medieval city, as the case of John Man shows.

Anti-social behaviour was a problem even in a medieval city. The tailor John Man caused trouble for the civic authorities for 16 years, from 1474 when he was presented for assaulting an Irishman. Records show that he caused continual nuisance with his pigs, breaking down hedges to give the animals access to his neighbours’ crofts and allowing them to roam the streets and forage on the Roodee and Henwald’s Lowe for months at a time. Eventually, in 1490, John was sentenced to death for theft by the county court.