BELL, Richard (d.c.1417), of Lincoln.
Available from Boydell and Brewer
Family and Education
m. Margaret (fl. 1417), s.p.1
Bailiff, Lincoln Sept. 1404-5; mayor 1411-12.2
As the evidence of his will, drawn up in October 1417, shows, Richard Bell was an affluent merchant with various tenements, shops and land in Lincoln and its suburbs. He was, indeed, able to leave bequests of cash alone worth over £60, no less than one third of which was set aside for funerary masses and obits. It is all the more surprising, therefore, in view of his comparative wealth and obvious influence in the city, that so little evidence has survived about his personal life and connexions. He stood surety for John Ryle on his election to the second Parliament of 1414, and performed a similar service for Thomas Archer in the following year. In June 1417 he again acted as a mainpernor, this time at the Exchequer for Robert, Lord Willoughby, and Henry Totewey, the newly appointed farmers of Burwell priory. The date of Bell’s death is not known, but he wished to be buried at the church of St. Paul in Lincoln where he was a parishioner. The task of executing his will fell to his widow, Margaret, his brother, John Bell (a chaplain) and his favourite apprentice, Robert Burnby, to whom he left £10 and the opportunity to buy up his property before it was put on the open market. He does not appear to have had any children.3