HENEAGE, Thomas (1581-1641), of Gray's Inn, London and Battersea, Surr.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1604-1629, ed. Andrew Thrush and John P. Ferris, 2010
Available from Cambridge University Press



c. Jan. 1629

Family and Education

b. 21 Jan. 1581, 1st s. of Michael Heneage† of Hoxton, Mdx. and Ulting Hall, Essex and Grace, da. and coh. of Robert Honywood of Charing, Kent. educ. G. Inn 1595. m. 17 May 1630, Bridget, da. of George Woodward† of Upton, Berks., wid. of Sir Thomas Liddell of Ravensworth Castle, co. Dur., 1s. 1da. suc. fa. 1600.1 d. 9 Aug. 1641.2

Offices Held

Commr. sewers, Luddenham level, Kent 1610.3


Heneage came from a Lincolnshire family high in favour with the Tudors. His uncle, Sir Thomas, first sat in Parliament for Stamford under Queen Mary, and as vice-chamberlain to her successor was able to leave a vast fortune to the countess of Winchilsea, the mother of John Finch I* and his brothers. His father achieved less distinction, though he sat in four Elizabethan parliaments. Conspicuous for piety and learning, he left Heneage £100 to buy his own wardship, but did not expect him to take much interest in his library.4 The nearest Heneage himself came to office was as reversioner to his brother-in-law Ralph Gill, keeper of the lions and leopards in the Tower.5

It may have been Heneage who, in 1620, arranged the marriage of John Finch I to Mary, daughter of Thomas Walker, chief usher of the Exchequer, as Mary was the granddaughter of Heneage’s paternal aunt, Margaret.6 Heneage was certainly a party to the Finch family settlement of 1622.7 The only evidence for Heneage’s election to Parliament in 1629 is his appointment on 12 Feb. to the committee for a private bill concerning lands in Essex, in which county he leased some property from the Crown.8 It is not known for certain which constituency he represented, as several seats had been vacated since the third Caroline Parliament met, but the likeliest is Winchelsea: Heneage’s kinsman Sir William Twysden had represented the borough on the Finch interest till his death on 8 Jan.,9 and Heneage’s sister-in-law was the widow of a Winchelsea jurat, Thomas Egleston*.10

Heneage was named in 1632 as a family trustee in Lady Winchilsea’s will, at which time he was described as being of Gray’s Inn.11 He drew up his own will ‘in good health’ on 10 June 1640, in which he required a funeral ‘with as little charge as may conveniently be’. By his own admission his son Michael was left ‘very meanly provided for’ during the lifetime of Michael’s mother, Dame Bridget, whose jointure lands were worth £130 p.a., and he was anxious to increase his daughter’s modest portion of £600 by the sale of his house in Battersea.12 He died in August 1641. No later member of the family entered Parliament.

Ref Volumes: 1604-1629

Authors: Peter Lefevre / Andrew Thrush


  • 1. C142/265/61; Top. and Gen. i. 400-1; Regs. of Christenings, Marriages and Burials of Par. of Allhallows London Wall Par. Reg. ed. R. Hovenden, 241; Vis. Bucks. (Harl. Soc. lviii), 132; PROB 11/187, f. 8v; GI Admiss.
  • 2. Som. RO, DD/WHb/2489.
  • 3. C181/2, f. 109.
  • 4. PROB 11/97, f. 20v; HP Commons 1558-1603, sub Heneage, Michael.
  • 5. CSP Dom. 1603-10, p. 249; Coll. Top. et Gen.. viii. 280.
  • 6. Lincs. Peds. (Harl. Soc. li), 482.
  • 7. PROB 11/158, f. 88v.
  • 8. CJ, i. 929a; C66/1943/1.
  • 9. Twysden’s wife, Anne, was the daughter of Heneage’s first cousin, Elizabeth, whose father was Sir Thomas Heneage and whose husband was Sir Moyle Finch†.
  • 10. Vis. Bucks. 132.
  • 11. PROB 11/165, f. 180. For evidence of his activity as a trustee, see Cal. of Docquets of Ld. Kpr. Coventry 1625-40 ed. J. Broadway, R. Cust and S.K. Roberts (L. and I. Soc. spec. ser. xxxvi), 674.
  • 12. PROB 11/187, f. 8v; Som. RO, DD/WHb/2488.