COXE, Samuel (1550-1612), of London; later of Fulbrooke, Oxon.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1558-1603, ed. P.W. Hasler, 1981
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

bap. 4 Mar. 1550,2 1st s. of William Coxe, citizen and haberdasher of London. educ. Pembroke, Camb. 1565. unm. suc. fa. 1569.

Offices Held

Sec. to (Sir) Christopher Hatton I, c.1577-87.


Coxe served with Valentine Dale, Elizabeth’s ambassador in France from 1573 to 1576. He then became Sir Christopher Hatton’s secretary and for many years was responsible for keeping his letter book. Though he made the usual protests that he never received ‘any kind of wages, nor other gift or bounty’ he obtained at least a preferment in the gift of Magdalen College, Oxford, and a crown lease in reversion worth £200. In 1580 Hatton wrote to the city of London on Coxe’s behalf, asking for the office of packer in the port of London. In 1584 Coxe was suspended from duty, ostensibly for taking bribes, but in fact for persistently quarrelling with Hatton’s other servants, notably Francis Flower. After promising to behave himself he was reinstated and, early in 1586, went to the Netherlands with his master’s nephew Sir William Hatton. His services were not retained when Hatton became lord chancellor in 1587, and he retired to the Oxfordshire estates he had purchased a year earlier—presumably from the proceeds of fees he had extorted from Hatton’s many suitors.

Coxe no doubt owed both his terms in the Commons to his employment with Hatton. In 1579 he was returned by Rochester in place of William Partridge, who was sick. When the House met in 1581, the question arose as to whether substitutes for living Members could attend. On 19 Jan. the House agreed that they could and they did, until the last day of the session, 18 Mar., when the House reversed its decision. Coxe’s return at Richmond in 1586 was presumably made by a patron, Henry Lord Scrope, by arrangement with Hatton. On the original indenture, the name of Coxe has been written in over an erased name.3

Coxe died 1 Apr. 1612 while visiting a friend in Holborn and was buried at St. Giles-in-the-Fields. In his will,4 dated 25 Oct. 1611 and proved 6 Apr. 1612, he described himself as ‘one of the predestinate chosen number of His elect in His heavenly kingdom’. He left £3 to the preacher at his funeral, books to his servant, and plate to his sister. He settled his lands on his nephew, George Gascoigne of the Middle Temple.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: R.C.G.


  • 1. Served as substitute in 1581 session.
  • 2. St. Mary le Bowe Reg. (Harl. Soc. xliv), 4.
  • 3. D’Ewes, 281, 282, 308; C219/30.
  • 4. PCC 28 Fenner.