EVERARD, Sir Richard (c.1625-94), of Westminster.
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Family and Education
b. c.1625, 1st s. of Sir Richard Everard, 1st Bt., of Langleys, Great Waltham, Essex by 1st w. Joan, da. of Sir Francis Barrington, 1st Bt.†, of Barrington Hall, Hatfield Broad Oak, Essex; step-bro. of Sir Gervase Elwes, 1st Bt and Sir John Elwes. m. (1) c.1654, Elizabeth, da. and coh. of Sir Henry Gibb, 1st Bt., groom of the bedchamber 1611-46, of Falkland, Fife and Westminster, 2s. (1 d.v.p.) 1da.; (2) Jane, da. of Sir John Finet, master of the ceremonies 1626-41, of St. Martin’s Lane, Westminster, s.p. Kntd. by 1661; suc. fa. as 2nd Bt. June 1680.1
J.p. Westminster Mar. 1660-70, ?1675-87, Mdx. 1661-70, Essex 1664-70, 1675-Apr. 1688, Oct. 1688-d.; commr. for militia, Westminster Mar. 1660, sewers Aug. 1660, assessment, Westminster Aug. 1660-78, Essex 1663-80, 1689, loyal and indigent officers, London and Westminster 1662; dep. lt. Essex 1670-80; commr. for recusants, Mdx. 1675.2
Everard’s ancestors had held manorial property in Great Waltham since 1482. His father married into the Barrington family, which dominated the county committee in the Civil War, became a Presbyterian elder, and represented Essex under the Protectorate.3
Everard probably acquired a residence in Westminster by marriage, and was knighted soon after the Restoration. He was returned for Westminster after a contest at the general election of 1661, and listed as a friend by Lord Wharton. A moderately active Member of the Cavalier Parliament, he was appointed to 171 committees and acted as teller in three divisions, but seldom spoke. He seems to have been most prominent in the opening sessions, probably in opposition, for he took no part in the Clarendon Code. He assumed the chair for the bill to confirm private Acts and carried it to the Lords. He also reported a bill to establish a registry of pawnbrokers, and was appointed to the committee to consider a bill for paving, repairing and cleaning the streets in his constituency. After the summer recess he was the first Member appointed to attend the King with a request that all those under attainder should be brought back to the Tower for trial. He was added to the committee on the bill for restraining the export of leather on 6 Mar. 1662, took the chair, and carried it up. In 1663 he was among those ordered to draft a bill to prevent the growth of Popery, a matter on which he felt strongly, for on 11 Apr. he wrote to Humphrey Weld, one of his colleagues on the Westminster bench, complaining that a harsh and illegal punishment for the seizure of Popish books and trinkets ‘argues more affection to Babylon than to the crown of England’. As a Westminster MP he was added to the committee on the bill for the naturalization of George Willoughby and others, and reported it to the House. A petition from the inhabitants of Westminster was read in connexion with the additional poor relief bill on 23 June, and Everard was the second Member named to the committee. He was the first to whom was committed, on 2 Apr. 1664, the bill for the continued enjoyment of water brought to Westminster from Hyde Park. On 1 Dec. he complained that he had been affronted and assaulted by John Elwes and Peter Killigrew*; the matter was referred to the committee of privileges, but never reported. His last chairmanship was for an Essex estate bill, which he reported on 27 Oct. 1666.4
Everard’s activity declined under the Cabal. He probably favoured toleration, for he was removed from the commission of the peace when the second Conventicles Act became law, and on 7 Mar. 1673 he was appointed to the committee for a bill of ease for protestant dissenters. In a debate on grievances on 17 Mar. he ‘complained of the levying half a crown per annum of all licensed alehouses’. Somewhat surprisingly he was included on the working lists, though Sir Richard Wiseman, who ‘doubted’ him, wrote to Danby: ‘I hope the Duke of Albemarle [Christopher Monck] will secure him. The King or your lordship may be pleased to mind of it, as likewise (Sir) Thomas Clarges if any good may be done upon him’. Presumably some was: Shaftesbury listed him as ‘thrice vile’ and he was classed as a court supporter on the government list of 1678. The author of A Seasonable Argument alleged that he had received £500 ‘and that being near spent, must have more or seek a new way to get bread’. After the Popish Plot his local knowledge was called on for a search of the Commons cellars for gunpowder. On 9 Nov. he informed the House that he had apprehended ‘a person mentioned in Mr Coleman’s letter’, and was among those appointed to examine the prisoner’s papers. This was his last committee: he was absent from the call of the House on 11 Dec. and sent for in custody by the serjeant-at-arms, and he was granted leave 12 days later. He never stood again. He gave negative answers on the Test Act and Penal Laws questions. He died on 29 Aug. 1694 ‘in the seventieth year of his age’, and was buried at Great Waltham. His son inherited an estate of only £500 p.a. Langleys was sold to Samuel Tufnell in 1710, and no other member of Everard’s family entered Parliament.5