CLOPTON, John (d.1424), of Gloucester.
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Family and Education
?Constable of Caldicot castle, Mon. 3 Dec. 1393-bef. Oct. 1403.
Coroner, Glos. up to d.
Clopton had no strong connexions with Gloucester, and was unusual among the town’s parliamentary burgesses in never, so far as is known, holding office there. He was, however, a local man, and although in August 1398, when he took out a royal pardon, he was described as ‘of Gloucestershire’, it was more specifically as ‘of Gloucester’ that on 6 Mar. 1400 he was ordered, under pain of a £40 fine, to deliver to a royal messenger the palfrey then in his keeping which had recently belonged to Queen Isabella.1 He was perhaps the same man who, as a servant of Thomas, duke of Gloucester, had been appointed by the duke in December 1396, for term of his life and at an annual salary of £5, as constable of Caldicot castle. Although confirmed in this appointment by Henry IV in June 1401, he had been replaced by October 1403 when James Clifford*, King’s esquire, was keeper of the castle.2 By this time Clopton had set up business as a cloth manufacturer in Gloucester, but he may also possibly be identified with the London skinner of the same name, for when the latter, in May 1410, was suing his servant, Richard Pilton, for failing to complete his term of service, Pilton’s mainpernors included a Gloucester man. Clopton, in fact, appears but twice in the Gloucester records: in October 1412, only seven months before he represented the borough in Parliament, he became a trustee of local property; and at Easter 1417 he was a juror in the town. He did, however, attend the shire courts held at Gloucester for the elections to the Parliaments of 1415 and 1420, on the latter occasion standing surety for Thomas More I, then returned for the borough. At some time during his career he was appointed as a coroner of the shire, only to die in office, shortly before 6 Nov. 1424.