EDMONDS, John (by 1503-44), of the Middle Temple, London and Little Waltham, Essex.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

b. by 1503, ?3rd s. of John Edmonds of Cressing Temple, Essex. educ. M. Temple, adm. 19 May 1517. m. by 1530, Mary, 4s. (2 posth.) 1da.2

Offices Held

Lent reader, M. Temple 1531, Autumn 1541, bencher 1532.

J.p. Essex 1530-d.; escheator 1538-9.3


John Edmonds was a lawyer who according to a statement made in 1539 was born at Cressing Temple in Essex. He had an elder brother of the same name who rose to be a doctor of divinity and master of Peterhouse. The younger John Edmonds continued to be styled junior after the elder had taken his doctorate until the death of their father in 1532, after which he was usually described as of the Middle Temple. He was named to the county bench after his marriage and purchase of property at Witham; although he sold this within three years, he was to buy land elsewhere in Essex, his chief acquisition being the manor of Little Waltham which he bought in 1542 from Henry Fortescue and made his home. In 1537 he reported to Sir Thomas Audley remarks unfavourable to Cromwell made in prison by Lord Darcy of Templehurst, and he may have been the John Edmonds listed in the following year among the gentlemen of Cromwell’s household who were to attend only when required. If so, he could have enjoyed the minister’s support when elected for Maldon in 1539 and simultaneously admitted to the freedom of the town, although unlike his fellow-Member Thomas Bonham he did not agree to forgo wages. His legal skill may also have commended him to the borough: the chamberlains’ accounts for 1540 record the payment of 3s.4d. ‘to Mr. Edmonds’s clerk for a copy of an Act (32 Hen. VIII, c.18) that year put into the parliament house for the decay of houses in this town’. He was not re-elected to the following Parliament and was dead before the next was summoned: he died in London on 23 June 1544, having made his will earlier that day. He provided for his wife and children, who were to be kept at school ‘till they have their grammar’. His widow and sole executrix bore him twins after his death and married one Moone whom she also survived, dying in 1550.4

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: D. F. Coros


  • 1. Essex RO, D/B3/1/2, f. 115v.
  • 2. Date of birth estimated from education. PCC 20 Thower, 16 Pynnyng, 11 Coode; Essex Feet of Fines, iv. ed. Reaney and Fitch, 177.
  • 3. E371/300, m. 43.
  • 4. Essex RO, D/B3/1/2, f. 115v; D/B3/3/236; DNB (Edmunds, John); LP Hen. VIII, iv, v, xi-xiii, xv-xvii, xix, xx; Essex Feet of Fines, iv. 177, 191, 216, 255; M. L. Robertson, ‘Cromwell’s servants’ (Univ. California Los Angeles Ph.D. thesis, 1975), 483; PCC 20 Thower, 16 Pynnyng, 11 Coode; C142/70/41.