The Gawain-Poet shows clear evidence (see Section 3.5) of familiarity with the ways of court in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (lines 60-75 and 999-1006) and in Cleanness (lines 1397-1412). It would be supportive if another member of his family could demonstrate allegiance to a suitable court.
Quite clearly James Cottrell was a resident member of the royal household in Portugal. We also find that one John Cat was an esquire in the household of Edward III in 1368, the year before Geoffrey Chaucer is listed as one of the “esquiers de meindre degree” in the lists of esquires of the king's household for 1368 and 1369 printed in the Chaucer Life Records (Chaucer Society.) [HULBERT02] We can speculate that John Cat was a relative, and possibly close ancestor (perhaps father?) of James Cottrell.
© 2005-2007 Ron Catterall