DANEYS, Sir John (1352-1400), of Lyndon and Tickencote, Rutland.
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Family and Education
J.p. Rutland 14 Dec. 1381-Sept. 1384.
Commr. to suppress the insurgents of 1381, Rutland Mar., Dec. 1382.
Our Member’s ancestors are known to have lived at Tickencote, the family seat, from the beginning of the 13th century if not before. The most celebrated of their number was his uncle, Sir Roland, who represented Rutland in at least four Parliaments and, in the service of Edward III, rose to become constable of Cardigan castle. During the course of a long and successful military career, Sir Roland was able to consolidate his Rutland estates by purchase, and thus acquired the manors of Lyndon (with its advowson), Horn and Cardigan, as well as adding to his inherited property in the township of Empingham. By the time of his death, which occurred in November 1361, he had also secured a reversionary title to the manors of Glaston in Rutland and Glooston in Leicestershire and was, furthermore, the owner of certain unspecified holdings in Bedfordshire.2 Since he died childless, all this land passed to his nephew, the subject of this biography, who was then a child of nine. The boy had already lost his father, an obscure figure named Oliver Daneys, and thus became a ward of the Crown. In April 1362 custody of his property in Bedfordshire was given to Robert Corby, one of the King’s yeomen. Two months later another royal servant, John Goderik, took possession of the rest of the Daneys estates, together with the wardship and marriage of the young heir himself. During the last years of his minority Daneys seems to have spent a good deal of time at Court, being given a regular grant for summer and winter liveries from 1371 until his coming of age in June 1373. He received a similar award in 1376, which perhaps suggests that he then held some modest position in the royal household.3
One third of Sir Roland’s estates remained in the hands of his widow, Elizabeth, who lived on until Easter 1377. She had by then restored the manor of Glooston to Sir Robert Harrington*, the son of the former owner, and although a lawsuit was brought on behalf of the young John Daneys he never managed to recover this part of his inheritance. Harrington also gained control of Glaston after a legal battle which ended in 1381, possibly with the offer of suitable compensation to Daneys.4 Despite these initial problems, the latter had clearly established himself as one of the leading landowners of Rutland by the date of his first return to Parliament, which occurred shortly after his appointment to the county bench.
Comparatively little is known about Daneys after December 1382, when he received his only royal commissions: for the suppression of the insurgents of 1381. Since his involvement in local government ceased altogether over the next two years, we may perhaps assume that he went abroad. He certainly took part in the naval expedition led by Richard, earl of Arundel, in March 1387, against the combined French, Spanish and Flemish fleets, and fought under Sir Hugh Despenser in the ensuing battle. He was back in Rutland by October of that year, when he witnessed a deed for his neighbour, Joan Green, at her manor of Exton. Save for his two further appearances as an MP in 1388 and 1394, no more is heard of him until the summer of 1397 by which time he seems to have entered the service of Henry of Bolingbroke. The latter’s chamberlain then paid him 12s. in expenses for two separate journeys made by him from Tutbury in Staffordshire, the first being to Devon and the second to London, via Leicester and Huntingdonshire. His attachment to Bolingbroke may well explain why he sued out a royal pardon in June 1398, since it is quite possible that he had been involved with him and the other Lords Appellant in the turbulent events of 1387-8. He was, moreover, on fairly close terms with the Lancastrian retainer, Sir Thomas Burton*, who engaged his services as a witness to property transactions.5
Daneys died on Palm Sunday 1400, and was succeeded by his son, John (d.1433), who eventually became sheriff of Rutland. According to a local antiquary, the young man married one of Sir Payn Tiptoft’s* daughters, but we cannot be certain on this point.