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Officers of the Guild.
There are, according to ancient custom, three high stewards duly appointed to superintend this fete, whose peculiar office is to compare the old guild book, in order to ascertain what persons are still living, belonging to each family of burgesses, whether inhabitant restored, or foreign burgesses.
The first Steward compares and duly examines the ancient guild book, as to what is stated above.
The second Steward is to consider what additional burgesses have been admitted to the franchises and liberties of the borough, who are admitted by what is termed court-roll.
The third Steward is termed the bondsman, and receives all fines paid at this time, and if any court-roll burgess, or newly admitted burgess, requires confirmation of his freedom to the borough, this aforesaid steward, with the aldermen who are termed benchers, are to fix upon the exact sum he is to pay for the renewal of his franchise, he is then enrolled accordingly in the large guild book, by the seneschal or town-clerk. Therefore, all burgesses and others admitted de novo, and claiming a right of privilege in these aforesaid cases, are duly admitted upon examination of their claims and rights being fully proved.
There is a Comptroller of the Household, chosen also from the body of the aldermen, whose office is, during the time of the guild being celebrated, to survey the inferior officers of the household. He is attired in a
He is attired in a dark gown, with a white rod in his hand, and gives directions and advice to the clerk of the kitchen, the cook, and other servants employed for the purpose of preparing entertainment for feasting, during this solemnization of Preston guild. And moreover he is to see that no extravagance takes place, but that economy and order be observed in all things relative to this business.
The Clerk of the Kitchen is to advise with the comptroller upon all occasions, and to give due orders to the cook and butchers, what sort of beef, mutton, veal, &c. he is to prepare, together with venison, rabbits, hares, and fowls, such as geese, ducks, pheasants, capons, and pullets. The bread-baker, the brewer, and the larderer, all hold their respective spheres during this interesting carnival. There is a chief butler gorgeously attired in blue and red costume, the yeoman of the wine cellar, clerk of the kitchen, &c. &c. The clerk of the kitchen receives all accounts daily, and enters all up in his account book kept for that purpose, and lastly, to deliver up
his accounts to the comptroller, who when the guild is closed renders
these accounts at the public audit held in the Guild-hall for that purpose.
The Chief Cook gives special orders to the under cooks, how and in what manner they are to prepare victuals, by giving them a bill of fare for each day's entertainment.
The Under Cooks, together with the turnspits, scullery girls, and others, are to be every way obeisant, and obedient in all cases, and to go through their respective occupations with all alacrity and diligence.
The Chief Butler's business is to attend the pantry, and to entertain the strangers with becoming courtesy.
The Under Butlers always to be in waiting, and to be ready to attend the cellars, for drawing liquors for the guests assembled at these entertainments.
The Yeomen of the Wine Cellar is to attend the various ladies and gentlemen with whatever they may want, such as wine, sack, and other liquors provided upon this occasion, and to furnish the dining-room with all necessary appendages, such as the plates, knives and forks, table cloths, tankards, glasses, jugs, goblets, &c. And to receive orders from the comptroller what he is to do, and to be in unison in all cases appertaining to this entertainment, so that no bad example be set to the residue of the servants by any refractory words or actions, tending to disturb the harmony which should prevail at this joyful time.
The Pantler and Bread-baker are to provide and deliver out, upon due orders being given to that effect, such as bread, cheese, butter, &c.
The Guardian of the Sweetmeats and Spicery to have all things in ample order and readiness, so that he may be the better enabled to deliver out to the cook what may be wanting in the kitchen, for furnishing dishes for the various courses of the entertainments given by the guild mayor and his worthy brethren the capital burgesses of the town of Preston.
Those young men denominated Waiters at the Table, are to be men of good manners, comely in their features, and cleanly in their bodily habits ; they are to carry the various dishes, and place them in ample order upon the table in the dining-room, and to be ready at all times during dinner, to wait upon either lady or gentleman, with alacrity, in all cases needful.
There are persons appointed, termed Gentlemen Servers, who receive the various dishes from these waiters, as occasion requires, and who duly see that the bill of fare is carried into effect upon these occasions. The tables are to be prepared by the second butler in office, who furnishes napkins, bread and salt, and beer, ale, and wine, in large vessels, which stand on large trays near the side-board.
The Gentlemen of the Nappery, or nut-brown ale, serving-men, give directions to the waiting-men, how and in what manner to serve each gentleman, with bottles of sack and wine, such as claret, rhenish, hock, cogniac, ale, &c. and to keep the various glasses, bowls, tankards, &c. in good order.
The Gentleman Carver is to attend, with his h'wytle and his steel by his side, a man of good judgment in this respect and of courteous manners.
The Grand Marshall of the Procession shall hold his office, by giving directions how and in what manner the various companies shall range themselves, and when the procession is ended to see that the nobility, gentry, and others, take their due precedency at the table, where they dine in a sumptuous manner with the guild mayor at the head of the table, joined by all his retinue.
The Usher of the Guild-hall shall have his due place and precedency assigned him, and shall be habited in a black gown, and a black staff in his hand, and shall stand at the foot of the great staircase leading up to the rooms ; all gentlemen of honour and distinction are to be ushered into the room, in due form, by him.