Worshipful Company of Merchant Taylors

Worshipful Company of Merchant Taylors

The Worshipful Company of Merchant Taylors is one of the 108 Livery Companies of the City of London.

The Company, originally known as the Guild and Fraternity of St. John the Baptist in the City of London, was first incorporated under a Royal Charter in 1327, confirmed by later charters in 1408, 1503 and 1719.

Its seat is the Merchant Taylors' Hall between Threadneedle Street and Cornhill, a site it has occupied since 1347. The Company's motto is Concordia Parvae Res Crescunt, from the Roman historian Sallust meaning In Harmony Small Things Grow.


The Company was at first an association of tailors. By the end of the 17th century, its connection with the tailoring trade had virtually ceased and it became what it is today, a philanthropic and social association. As a result it owns, supports or is associated with several schools, almhouses and other charitable institutions. It owns Merchant Taylors' School and St. John's Preparatory School in Northwood and Sandy Lodge in Hertfordshire, and is associated with Merchant Taylors' School, Crosby, Merchant Taylors' Girls' School in Crosby, Wolverhampton Grammar School, Foyle and Londonderry College, Wallingford School, and The King's School, Macclesfield. It is also associated with St John's College, Oxford, founded by Sir Thomas White (a Master of the Company) in 1555, and with Pembroke College, Cambridge.

It donates prizes to St. Helen's School in Northwood. It gives support to the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, the London College of Fashion, the Textile Conservation Centre and the Royal Society of Arts. It also supports Treloar School in Hampshire, a school and college for children with physical disabilities.


Under an order issued by mayor Robert Billesden in 1484, the Company ranks in sixth or seventh place (making it one of the Great Twelve City Livery Companies) in the order of precedence of the Livery Companies, alternating with the Skinners' Company. The annual switch occurs at Easter. The Merchant Taylors are normally sixth in the order of precedence in odd numbered years, and at seven in even numbered years.

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