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John of Caen House, York Cathedral Close

In the civil parish of York.
In the historic county of Yorkshire.
Modern Authority of York.
1974 county of North Yorkshire.
Medieval County of Yorkshire Ainsty & York.

OS Map Grid Reference: SE602522
Latitude 53.96172° Longitude -1.07975°

John of Caen House, York Cathedral Close has been described as a probable Fortified Town House.

There are no visible remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


In 1298, Johannes de Cadamo (John of Caen) was given licence 'to crenellate his houses within the close of the church of York' (domos suas quas habet infra clausum Ebor. ecclesi). Actually he seems to have one house in the Minster close and another in Goodramgate, just outside the close. Caen was an Apostolic notary and held a number of prebends as well as being a royal clerk. The question here may be the nature of the house in Goodramgate, was this property let or was it used by Caen for his own possible business interests (the location might suggest private legal work rather than trade). Was the licence only a fairly straight forward recognition of Caen's royal links and works with a building in the Minster close that was decorated with crenellations or were there also some security features added to both houses to protect the legal documents so often the target of the mob? Despite the wealth of medieval buildings surviving in York none of these buildings survive and their actual forms are unknown. (Davis 2010)

A Royal licence to crenellate was granted in 1298 Aug 21 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).

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This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:06

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