After the Reformation schoolmasters, midwives, physicians, and surgeons had to prove that they conformed to the beliefs of the Church of England and had attended communion. Licences to practise were then registered in the diocesan records. Identifying the names of schoolmasters from such records is a basic task when studying the local history of †education.
Licences to pass beyond the seas were an early form of passport issued from the late Elizabethan period until 1677. The records, which are kept at The National Archives in E 157, include registers of soldiers serving in the Low Countries, 1613–24; people going to Holland and other places, 1624–37; and passengers to the colonies, 1634–9 and 1677.