Arthur Collins.

Collins's peerage of England; genealogical, biographical, and historical online

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brought him to the knowledge of, and endeared him to, those
puissant Princes, Kings Henry IV. and V. which, saith our author,
is no mean argument of his worth. " One John de Westcote, an
ancestor of this Thomas, was a canon residentiary of Exeter, in
the reign of King Hen. HI. and another of the same name and
family was rector of St. John Baptist hospital in Exeter, temp.
Edw. II. Whether Thomas Westcote, who was abbot of Hert-
land in Devon, temp, Edw. I. was of this family, I cannot say;
but I make no doubt, but Henry de Westcote, who in the Book

r Pat. zi Rich. II p. i. m. ii. ibid, i Hen. 5. p. i. m. 10.
s From a seal annexed to an original deed of this Thomas Luttciton
among the evidences at Hagley.

t Coke's Pioemium to the first Institut.
u ¥/orthies of Devon, p. 583, et seq.


of Tfinures is said to hold lands in Westcote, 8 Edw. I. and Johffl
de Westcote, who occurs in the same book as owner of lands in
Fremingtoti hundred, 6 Edw. II were both ancestors of Thomas,
who mafried Elizabeth Luttelton. '^

On this marriage, Westcote settled at Frankley in Worces-*
tershire, and served the office of escheator there, the 29th of
Hen. VI. 1450. Soon after which he died, leaving issue fouf
sons, and as many daughters.

First, Thomas, of whom hereafter.

Second, Edmund; third, Guy; fourth, Nicholas: which
three last retained tiie name of Westcote, though often solicited
by their mother, to call themselves Luttelton. It is said, she
once expostulating with them, whether they thought better of
themselves than their elder brother? they answered, " that he had
a fair estate to alter his name ; and if they might share with him,
they would do the like. " y

Guy married , the daughter of . ..... Granville, of

Gloucestershire (a younger branch of the Granvilles, of Kilk-
hampton in Cornwall) from whom descended the Westcotes of
Somersetshire, and of Raddon in Devonshire.

Nicholas married Agnes, daughter and coheir of Edmund
Vernon, of Handsacre in Staffordshire, by Joan, the daughter and
sole heir of William Handsacre, of Handsacre, from whom the
Westcotes of that county weie descended.
Edmund died unmarried.

Of the daughters I find but one married, viz. Anne, the eldest,
the wife of Thomas Porter, Esq. of Barston in Warwickshire,
where she was buried, A. D. \50Q.

It seems probable that some of the children of Guy Westcote,
above-mentioned, who settled at Raddon in Devon, assumed the
liame of Luttelton, and removed into Cornwall ; for, in the 5th of
Hen. VII. one of that name, bearing the ancient Lyttelton arms,
without difference, occurs Lord of Lanhiderick, near Bodmyn j
who, by marrying the heiress of Gerard, of Polstoth, got a large
estate in that county, and had at the same time no inconsiderable
one in Devonshire. On failure of issue, it passed soon after, by
marriage, to the Trenances of Lastilian, and they were in posses-
sion, circa ami. )t532. ^

X From an Heraldical MS in the hands of Mr. Parmentier, of Exom
anno 1 750-

y Vis iSalop, ut supra. » Ibid.


Elizabeth, the widow of Thomas Westcote, survived him
many years, and remarried Thomas Hewster, of Lichfield, Esq.
who was chosen knight for Worcestershire, the Qth of Hen. VJ.
She died at the age of seventy-nine 3 and, I apprehend, was
buried at Halesowen.

Thomas, "her eldest son, who bore his father's christian name,
and his mother's surname, Luttelton, or Lyttelton, as he wrote it,
studied at one of the two Universities ; afterwards removed to the
Inner Temple, where he read learnedly on the statute De Donis
Conditionalibus. Anno 1454, he was called to the degree of Ser-
jeant at law J and afterwards appointed steward of the Marshalsea
of tlie King's household. The year following, he was appointed
King's Serjeant, and rode justice of the assize in the northern cir-
cuit. Anno J447, 26 Hen. VI. he served the office of high
sheriff of Worcestershire ; having before been escheator thereof.
In 1454, he had a general pardon under the great seal ; "^ and two
years after, was in commission with Humphrey Duke of Bucking-
ham, and William Birmingham, Esn. to raise forces in the county
of Warwick. "^

On the coming of King Edw. IV". to the crown, he sued out

another general pardon. He appears to have been in favour with

both Kings, and the latter gave him particular marks of royal

favour ; for, anno J404, the fourth year of his reign, he appointed

him one of the judges of the Common Pleas, and granted him out

of the customs of London, Bristol, and Hull, 110 marks yearly,

ultra consuetum fosdum, ut station suum decentius tenere et ex-

pensas sustinere valeret; and moreover the sum of lOQs. lO^d.

for a robe and furrs, and 66s. 6d. for a summer robe, called

Unura.^ In the fifteenth year of this King, the Prince of Wales

was created a Knight of the Bath, at which time several persons

of the first distinction, and in the highest favour at court, were

advanced to this honour, as the Earl of Lincoln ; Grey, the

Queen's son; Bryan, chief justice of the Common Pleas j and

Lyttelton, that learned father of the law, as Mr. Habingdon, in

his history of that reign, expresses it. '^

He wrote his famous Treatise on Tenures when he was a

* Ex Autograph© penes Honoratissimum Dom. Geo. Lyttelton, Baronem
de Frankley.

b Pat. 36 Hen. VI. p. i. m. 7
« Life of Judge Lyttelton, in the Geneial Dictionary, p 119-
<1 Anstis's Order of the Bath, p. 32, and Hab. liist. Ed. IV p. 136


judge, after the fourteenth year of King Edw. IV. Lord Coke
thinks^ not long before his death, because it wanted his last hand ;
notwithstanding he makes this great encomium upon it, " that it
is the ornament of the common law, and the most perfect and ab-
solute work that ever was wrote in any human science" To this
may be added what Dr. Holland, in his additions to Camden,
saith of it, " that the students of the common law are no less
beholden to Lyttelton's Tenures, than the civilians are to Justi-
nian's Institutes. ""

About this time, some privileges of great consequence were
contested between the city and church of Worcester : which dis-
putes arose to that height, that the King interposed, and appointed
Sir Thomas Lyttelton, and Mr. Salway, a gentleman of that
county, his commissioners, to terminate these differences by
award; which affair they performed with that judgment and im-
partiality, as gave full satisfaction to both the contending parties,
and by that means restored peace and amity to the chief town in
their county. *"

Sir Thomas married Joan, widow of Sir Philip Chetwind, of
Ingestre in com. Stafford, one of the daughters and coheirs of Sir
William Burley, of Bromscroft castle in com. Salop, Knight, (by

his wife, the daughter and heir of Grendon, of Grendon

in Staffordshire) with whom he had large possessions. N. B.
This Sir W. Burley was of the same house with Sir William
Burley, warden of the Cinque Ports, constable of Dover castle.
Lord Chamberlain and Knight of the Garter, temp. Rich. 11.
whose brother Richard was also Knight of the Garter, as was Sir
John Burley, their father. By her Sir Thomas Lyttelton had
three sons, and two daughters.
First, William.

Second, Richard, to whom the Tenures are addressed, who
followed his father's profession. He married* Alice, daughter
and sole heir of William Winnesbnry, of Fillaton-Hall in com.
Staff. Esq. and was lineal ancestor to the present Sir Edward
Littleton, of that place, Bart.

Third, Thomas was seated at Spechley, near Worcester, and
married Anne, daughter and sole heir of John Botreaux, of Bo-

e Holland's Transl- of Camb Britannia, in Worcestershire.
f Hab. Survey of Worcestershire, MS in the hands of the late Lord Bp',
of Carlisle.

g Visit, of Staffurdshire, MS-


treaux castle in Cornwall, Esq. from whom were descended the
Lord Keeper Lyttelton, Baron of Mounslow, temp. Car. 1. j Sir
Thomas Lyttelton, Bart. Speaker of the House of Commons, temp.
Gul. III. and other families of the Lytteltons.

His two daughters^ named Ellen and Alice, both died un-

He himself died at Frankley, on August 23d, I4S1, aged
about sixty, and was interred under an altar tomb, which he
erected in his lifetime, on the south side the nave of the cathe-
dral at Worcester; upon the flat part whereof was his portrai-
ture in brass, and these words issuing from his mouth, Fill Dei
miserere mei ; at each end, two shields of brass, one containing
the arms of Westcote, the other of Lyttelton, and on the front,
four shields ; the first. Argent, a lion rampant, Sab. armed, Gules,
dehruised with afess, counter compone, Or and Azure (impaling)
Argent, two Cheverons, Gules, Burley and Grendon : second,
Burley, as before (impaling) Barry, of six. Or and Azure; on
a lend sinister, Gules, three Martlets, Argent, Grey of Rythin :
third, Argent, two talhots, passant. Gules (impaling) Barry of six,
Argent and Azure, a bend sinister, Gules ; on the highest bar an
annulet of the third, Breston, and Grey of Wilion : fourth, Gu/es,
a fess, azure, betiveen four hands, Or, Quatermain ; impaling
Breston, as before. On the flat stone, above the judge's portrai-
ture, were three brass shields, viz. Lyttelton impaling Quater-
main ; Westcote impaling Lyttelton ; and Lyttelton impaling
Burley. All these arms, as well as the figures, were torn off the
tomb in the last civil war, and nothing left but the following in-
scription on brass round the verge of the monument. Hie jacet
Corpus Thome Littelton de Frankley, Militis de Balnea, iff unus
Justiciariorum de Communi Banco, qui obiit 23 Augusti, Ann.
Dom. M. CCCC. LXXXL After the restoration of King
Charles IL it was repaired by Mr. Lyttelton the King's solicitor^
who had gilt iron rails placed before it (which were lately removed
when the body of the cathedral was new paved) and the several
compartments on the front decorated afresh with arms, but erro-
neouslyj for the Lyttelton shield was supported by the merman,
which was never borne by judge Lyttelton, his eldest son Sir Wil-
liam Lyttelton being the first that used it. Li 17^5, the modern
shields were obliterated, and the old ones restored.

As Sir Thomas Lyttel ton's will contains many curious partis
culars, it may not be amiss to give it the reader faithfully copied
from the original remaining in the Prerogitive-office.


In the name of God, Amen. I, Thomas Lyttelton, Knight,
oon of king's justice of the common place, make my testament,
and notifie my wille, in the manner and forme that foUoweth.
First, I bequeth my soal to Almighty God, Fader, Sonne, &c
Hollye Ghost, three persons & oon God, & our Lorde, maker of
heven and erth, &r of all the worlde ; & to our most blessed Lady
& virgin, Saynt Mary, moder of our Lord, & Jesu Christ, the
only begotten Sonne of our saide Lorde God, the fader of heven,
and to saint Christopher, the which our saide Lorde did truste to
here on his shoudres, & to all the saints of heven : and my body
to be berried in the tombe I lete make for me on the south side
of the body of the cathedrall-church of the monastere of our said
blessed lady, of Worcester, under an image of St Christopher, in
caas if I die in Worcestershire. Also, I wulle, and specially de-
sire, that immediately after my decesse, myn executors find three
gode preests for to singe iii trentals for my soule, so that everish
preest, by himself sing oon trental, and that everish such preest
have right sufficiently for his labor; also that myn executors find
another gode preest for to sing for my soule, fyvt masses, and
rowe j the ofFyce of which beginneth, HumUiavit semel ipsum
Dominus Jesu Chris tus usque ad mortem. Also I give one
hundred shelings by yere, to the priour & covent of the said mo-
nastere, out of certain messuages & landes in the cite of Wor-
cester & to their successors, to singe at the altar, hallowed for the
worship of St. George & St. Christopher, daily, at vii in the
morning, for the soules of my fader and moder, and for the soul
of William Burley, my fader-in-Iawe, & for the soul of Sir Philip
Chetwin & for all soules that I am most bounden to pray, & spe-
cially for myn own soule after my decesse ; & that everish such
monk sing everish Friday, a mass of Requiem; & Wd. for his
troubel, to be paid him by the handes of the sexton ; and I wull,
that whenever the covent sing the annual Placebo, ^ Dirige, i^
Requiem for my soul, and that of my ancestors, that they have
vi^. vind. for thyr disport and recreation. I wull, that the said
covent have 100/. for performyn this dyvin servyce.

Also I wulle, that the feoffees to myn use, of and in the
halfyndele of the manor of Baxterley, & Bentley, in Warwick-
shire, and in Mosele, in the lordship of Kingsnorton, & in Stone,
besyd Keddermyster, in Worcestershire, make a sure estate unto
Richard Lyttelton, my sonne, &: to the heirs of his bodie, with all
chartours, muniments, & evidences concernyng the same.

Also I wulle, that he have the reversion of the manor of Mol-


ston, besyde Clybeiyj in the county of Shrewsbury. Also I wull,
that my saide sonne, Richard, have all my state, title, & interest,
that 1 have in a messuage, in the parish of St. Sepulchres, of
London, on the north syde of the saide church, which I holde of
the abbot of Leicester, for term of yeres. Also I wull, that the
feoffees, to myn use, of & in the manor of Spechley, in Worces-
tershire, make a sure estate to my sonne, Thomas Lyttelton, and
the heirs of his body, with all chartours, &c. concernyng the
same, and all other lands, rents, reversions & services, that I have
in Spechley, Cuddeley, Bradicot, & White-lady Aston, with the
lands & tenements in Weddesbury, in com. Stafford.

I wulle, that my wyf have a bason of silver, in the myddes
whereof been myn arms, and an ewer of silver, two great salt-
salers, and a kever, weying 93 ounces & § ; a standyng plaine
gilt peece, with a plaine gilt kover, weying 24 ounces & ^ ; six
holies of silver, in the myddes of which been enamelled, for her
using, six monthes of the yere. A standing peece, with kever,
weying IQ ounces & ^. Two peeces of silver, one covering
another, y^ which I occupie at London ; a powder boxe of silver j
a paxebordej two cruetts, and a sakering-bell, all of silver. Also
I wull, that William liyttelton, my sonne and heire, shall have a
depc washing-bason of silver, ■weying 41 ounces, and twosaltsalers
of silver, with a kever to oon of them, weying 31 ounces & §,
with another peece, all over gilt, in the myddes of which be iii
eagles, a kover, weying 33 ounces ; also a lowe peece of silver,
with a kover, embossed in the likeness of roses, weying 2g ounces
& I : also he shall have a dosein of my best spones. Also I wull,
that my sonne, Richard, have two littel gilt saltsalers, with gilt
cover to oon, now at London ; also oon littel standyng peece, with
a gilt kover, which hath at the foote a crown, and another on the
kover, weying 22 ounces : also a standyng gilt nutt, and the best
dosein of the second sort of my spones. Also I wull, that Tho-
mas Lyttelton, my sonne, have two saltsalers of silver, weying 2/
ounces J a standyng peece, weying 21 ounces, gilt, & my arms
in the myddes of the same ; also a boll of silver, embossed with
round bosses, outward, weying 1 1 ounces & 3 quarters ; also he
shall have a dosein spones, of the third sorte.

Also I bequeth my gode littel mass-book, and gode vestment,
•with the apparyl to an auter, of the same sorte of vestments
which were my moder's, and also a gilt chales, I geve them to the
blessed Trinite, to the use & occupation of my chapel of Frankley,
in honour of our said most blessed Trinite j inasmuch as the said


chapel of the blessed Trinite, and an aulter thereof, is halowed in
the worship of thesaide blessed Trinite^ for to have masse songen
there on Trinite-Sunday, & other high festivals, & other days, to
the pleasure & honour of our saide most blessed Trinite. I wull,
that a bigger cofer, and locke and key be provyded for the safe
keping of these vestments & chales, within the chapel of Frankley,
and the lord of Frankley for the time being, have the keping of
the said key by himself, or som true and faithful person, so that
he se that the saide masse-book, vestment, chales, & apparyl be
surely kept, as he wull answer to the blessed Trinite. Also I
wull, that my great antiphoner be evermore had, & surely kept,
in worship of God, and St. Leonard, to the use and occupation of,
and for the chapel-church of St. Leonard, of Frankley.

Also I wuUe, that all my utensils of myn household, except
silver plate, as beds, matraces, blanquetts, brushes, tables, all pots
& chaldrons, k all such things that longith to my kechyn, after
the thyrd part geven to my wyfe, be equally devided between ray
three sonns.

Whereas, I have made certaigne feotfees of my manour of
Tixhale, in Staffordshir, for terme of the lif of my wif, the which
manour she had a jointour for terme of her lif, with me, neverthe-
later, my wille is, that my said wif, do not hereafter trouble, vexe,
ne disturbe my will & ordenance, that I have and will mak, of
& in or for certaigne lands 8c tenements, within the cite of Wor-
cesterj now my will and ordenance is, that she shal have the
saide manour of Tixhale, with the reveniz thereof, during her lif,
or els that the profitts thereof shall be taken and disposed in alms
deeds, for my soul, by myn executor, or by such other as I wull
thereto assigne, during her lif.

I wull, that my three sonns, and Sir Xtopher Goldsmyth,
parson of Bromsgrove, Sir Robert Cank, parson of Enlield, and
Robert Oxclyve, be myn executors ; that the three first have 20 1.
in money apeece, toward their increce and profitt, the latter v
marks each, of money, trusting in them that they wull do their
diligent labor to se that my will be performed ; the which, as they
know wele the performyng thereof in godely hast and tym, that
shall be to the liasty remedie of my soule; and the long tarying
thereof, is to the retardation of the meritts of my soule : wherefor
I wull, that everych of my saide sonns, to whom mv grete specyal
trust is, as kind nature wull, for to performe and execute my will

1 wuUe, that my wif have my best plough, and all apparj^l


thereto, and ten of my best plough-oxen, and my best wainc ; and
that William Lyttelton have my second best waine, two ploughs,
& ten oxen. A.lso I wulle, & specially desire, that all the money,
debts, goods & catells, that be myn at tyra of my deth, over the
cost & expensys of myn exequies & funeral, & over that that iS
bequethed by me in my llf, be sold & disposed for my soule, in
a.lms & charitable deeds, that may be most profitable & merit to
my soule. Also I wulle, that all my beests & quick cattel, not
afore bequethed, after myn exequies and fum^ral, be sold by myn
executors & to be disposed as they think most expedient for my

I wull & bequeth to the abbot & covent of Hales-Oweynj a
boke of myn, called Catholicori, to theyr own use for ever ; &
another boke of myn, wherein is contaigned, the Constitutions
Provincial, and, De gestis Romanorum, and other treatis therein,
which I wull be laid and bounded with an yron chayn, in som
convenient parte within tlie saide church, at my costs, so that all
preests & others, may se & rede it vvhenne it pleasith them. Also
I wull & bequeth to Sir Richard Howson, my preest, 405. in
money, and the same to my servant Hawkins. Also I bequeth
to dame Jane, my wyf, 20l. in money, in recompense of a silver
bason, the which was soinetym her husband's. Sir Philip Chet-
win's} to the said dame Jane, my best habyt, that is to saye, my
gown, cloke, & hode. Also to my doughter, Elyn, my second
best habyt, in lyke forme. Also to Alice, my second doughter,
my third best habyt, in lyke forme. Also I bequeth my gloset-
saulter to the priorle of Worcester. Also I bequeth a boke,
called Fasciculus morum, to the church at Enfield. Also I be-
queth a boke, called Medulla Grammatica, to the church of
Kingsnorton, Also I wulle, that my grete English boke, be sold
by myn executors, and the money thereof to be disposed for my

I bequeth to Thomas Lyttelton, my sonne, a little flatte peece
of silver, with a kover, all over gilte. Also to Edward Lyttelton,
my godsonne, a little standing goblet of silver, with a kover to
the same, all over gilte. And I wull, and specially desire my
moost betrusted lord, my lord bishop of Worcester, to be over-
seer of this my will, to be performed, as my moost special trust is
in his gode lordship : in witness whereof, to this my will, I have
sett my scale, theese being witnesses. Sir Richard Howson, priest,
Roger Hawkyns, Thomas Parkess, and others.


Written at Frankley, 22 August, the yere of our Lord Jesa

By inquisition taken after his death, in Worcestershire, he was
found to die seised of the manors of Frankley, Spechley, Moseley,
and Coulesdon, and of divers messuages and lands in Cuddeley,
Bradicote, White Lady Aston, Upton Snodsbury, Crowle, Pinton
and Stone, all in the said county. •' By a like inquisition taken at
Whitchurch in Shropshire, the jury find that Sir Reginald Grey,
of Wilton, and Fulk Springhose, were seised of the manors of
Cressage, in that county, and thereof enfeoffed Sir Thomas Lyt-
telton. Knight of the Bath ; Humphry Salway, and Guy West-
cote, Esqrs. quod manerium valet ultra repris as, 20l. ' By another
inquisition taken at Stafford, the jury find that the manor of Arley
was held by Sir Thomas Lyttelton, Humphry Salway, and Guy
Westcotej and that Lyttelton being deceased, the two others
were seised thereof by right of survivorship, et valet ultra reprisas,
20/. They find the same with regard to the manor of Tixhale,
quod valet ultra reprisas, 40 marcas. They find them also seised
jointly of twelve houses, in the city of Litchfield, held of the
bishop. '' N. B. Salway and Westcote were feoffees in trust for
Sir Thomas Lyttelton and his heirs; a method not long before
invented by the lawyers, for the preventing the forfeiture of es-
tates in those times of civil distractions, when attainders were very
frequent. Besides these manors and lands which Sir Thomas
Lyttelton appears to have had in fee, he held for his life the
manor of Sheriff Hales, in com. Stafford, by the grant of Sir Wil-
liam Trussel, Knight, pro bono et notabili consUio, as expressed
in the grant, dated the 30th of Hen. VI. He had a grant also of
the advowson of the vicarage of Bromsgrove, in com. Wigorn,
from the dean and chapter of Worcester. He likewise held for
the life of Dame Joan, his wife, half the manor of Grendon, with
the advowson of the church ; the whole manor of Ingestre, with
the advowson of the chapel, and divers lands in Rule, Rudge, and
Breredon, all in the county of Stafford; also certain lands in
Dordon and Warton, in com. Warwick, and lands in Grotwich
(forsan Droitwich) and Mitton, in com. Wigorn, all by grant from
Rob. Chetwind, of Aspath in Warwickshire. '

h Escaetria in Turre, 21 Ed. IV. No 55. Wigorn.

i Escaetria, ai Edw, IV. No. 55, Salop.

k Ibid. Stafford. 1 Vis. Salop, ut supra.


The Society of the Inner Temple (whereof this great lawyer
was a member) had his arms and quarterings painted in the
windows of their refectory, which remained till the civil war, as
they have at this time a fine picture of him at full length, painted
by Cornelius Jansen, from a portrait (as I conjecture) in Frankley
or Halesowen church windows. The shield in the Temple hall
consisted of the following coats, viz.

Argent, a cheveron, between three escallops, sable. Lyt-

Argent, a bend cotized, sable, within a bordnre, gules, be-
zantee. JFestcote.

Or, two lions passant in pale, azure. Somery.

Gules, a fess, azure, between four hands, or. Quaiermain.

Argent, two talbots passant in pale, gules. Breston.

Barry of six, argent and azure, a bend, gules. Grey.

Gules, a bend, argent, debruised with a fess, or. Fitz Oslorn.

Argent, a cheveron, between three escallops, sable. Lyttelton.

Over all an escutcheon of four coats, viz.

Argent, a lion rampant, sable, armed, gules, debruised with a

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