Vol.XLII The Register of the Guild of the Holy Cross, Stratford-upon-Avon
The Guild of the Holy Cross was the most influential body in medieval Stratford. It provided for the spiritual welfare of its members through the engagement of priests. With increasing wealth it soon came to play a leading role in town life, providing its splendid chapel, a school and almshouses which would have been familiar to Shakespeare both as a boy going to school and when living across the road in New Place.
The most important of the Guild records is the register of its members, spanning the years from 1403 to 1535. Recording some 8,000 names it gives evidence of social networks within the town, the extensive catchment area from which other members were drawn and the social status of such recruits.
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