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he Court of King's Bench convened in Lincoln on 29 September 1375. Once more Kydale presided. Usually in medieval indictments the accused ranged from "unknown felons notorious robbers"; the accusations against 15 members of de Cantilupe's household, Maud herself and an important local figure such as Sir Ralph Paynel were exceptional. Both the indictments of the peace sessions and Maud's June allegations were presented to the bench, and Gyse and Cooke were arraigned. Whereas the juries which presented their conclusions to the peace commission believed the crime was committed around the Feast of the Annunciation, it is with the juries presenting to the bench that a dating disparity is introduced. The King's Bench juries suggested, between them, ten different dates spread over two months. Sillem suggests that this may be explained by the fact that, by the time they came to consider the evidence, they could only rely o
n memories to an event which occurred at least six months previously.[note 16] When the case was eventually heard, it was not as murder, but as petty treason, since it involved either household servants rebelling against their master, or a wife against her husband, and was the first time the 1351 Treason Act had been used against members of a household in the death of their master.[note 17] The King's Bench juries deliberately used the language of treason rather than felony: tradiciose, false et sediciose, seditacione precogitata: treason, lies and sedition, seditious aforethought. All of which, argues Sillem, suggested to observers this "conveyed that most heinous of crimes, treachery to the lord". Maud withdrew her allegations—paying a fine for doing so—and Gyse and Cooke were therefore acquitted on her charges. The jury indictments remained, however. Most of those she had accused in June had never presented themselves to court—they seem to have dis
appeared—and apart from Cooke and Gyse, only she and her husband's seneschal stood trial. De Cletham had only been charged with aiding and abetting by the peace sess