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|16 Jan. 1559||LAWRENCE HYDE I|
|1562/3||SIR THOMAS RAGLAND|
|3 Jan. 1562||HENRY BAYNTON I 1 vice Snell, deceased|
|5 Nov. 1584||(SIR) HENRY KNYVET|
|8 Oct. 1586||(SIR) HENRY KNYVET|
|31 Jan. 1589||THOMAS VAVASOUR|
|1593||(SIR) HENRY KNYVET|
|THOMAS LAKE II|
|8 Oct. 1597||(SIR) HENRY KNYVET|
|15 Oct. 1601||SIR WILLIAM MONSON|
Malmesbury was a centre of the wool industry, and after the dissolution of the monasteries the abbey and a good deal of property in the town came into the hands of William Stumpe†, a clothier, whose son John continued the family business there. His niece married into the gentry in the person of Henry Knyvet who now settled at Charleton, nearby, and Stumpe and Knyvet together represented Malmesbury in 1584. Though the parliamentary returns were made by the ‘alderman’ and burgesses, Knyvet seems to have controlled elections from 1584 to his death in 1598. He had himself returned four times and was responsible for bringing in his nephew Thomas Vavasour (1589) and Thomas Lake II (1593). After Knyvet’s death his influence at Malmesbury passed to his daughter Anne and her husband Thomas, Lord Howard de Walden, who brought in the two 1601 MPs, Sir William Monson the admiral and Sidney Montagu, a lawyer.
The story of the remaining Malmesbury MPs is soon told. Lawrence Hyde I was the ‘auditor and servant’ of Sir John Thynne, who somehow contrived his return to the first Parliament of the reign. Sir Thomas Ragland (1563) was an insolvent hanger-on of the 1st Earl of Pembroke, and in 1571 and 1572 the 2nd Earl returned his father’s servant Nicholas Snell. Henry Bayly was a London man with local connexions. The remaining MPs were local men.
Author: P. W. Hasler
- 1. C219/283/24. Not Hunte as in OR.