MAULEVERER, Sir Oliver, of Empingham, Rutland.
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Family and Education
J.p. Rutland 12 Nov. 1397-9.
Commr. of array, Rutland Dec. 1399, Sept. 1403; oyer and terminer Sept. 1407 (appeal against a judgement by the dep. capt. of Calais) June 1408 (the same).
Dep. to Ralph, earl of Westmorland, marshal of England by 27 July 1405-aft. May 1408.
Although nothing is known for certain about this MP’s early life and ancestry, it seems likely that he grew up in Yorkshire, where the Mauleverer family was particularly influential, providing the county with several administrators and government officials during the period here under review. He himself is first mentioned in April 1386, when he obtained royal letters of protection pending his departure overseas in the company of Sir Thomas Trivet, admiral of the west. One year later he was pardoned a sentence of outlawry incurred for his failure to appear in court and defend himself in an action for debt brought against him by the wealthy London draper, John Hende, who claimed to be owed £32.2 Sir Oliver (who is, incidentally, described in the letters of pardon as ‘the younger’) seems to have had no inheritance of his own. He certainly owed his position as a landowner in Rutland to his wife, Elizabeth, whose first husband, Sir John Basings, had settled upon her the manor of Empingham as well as other land in the neighbouring villages of Horn, Normanton and Hardwick. The couple probably married at some point before February 1388, the date of Mauleverer’s first return to Parliament; and it was clearly as a result of his new connexion with the Basingses that Sir Oliver managed to obtain the wardship and marriage of Sir John’s young heir, Thomas. In November 1389, he agreed to pay the substantial sum of 100 marks for custody of the boy and his estates, which comprised the manors of Kenardington and ‘Yethyngge’, together with property in and around Woodchurch, Kent. Two years later, he sold his rights of marriage to Sir Adam Francis*, making a profit of marks out of the transaction, but still retaining his interest in the inheritance itself.3
Mauleverer soon established himself as a prominent figure in county society, and he acted fairly regularly as a witness to the property transactions of his neighbours. He performed this service for John Culpepper* and his kinsmen, the Greens, Sir Thomas Burton* and William, Lord Zouche, all of whom exercised considerable authority in the Rutland area.4 His return to the second Parliament of 1397, taken in conjunction with his appointment soon afterwards to the local bench, suggests that he was a known supporter of the court party, especially as Henry IV saw fit to remove him from office at the first opportunity. Even so, his political sympathies were not so strong as to prevent his appointment to a commission of array in December 1399, and he eventually became a loyal and trusted servant of the house of Lancaster. Mauleverer was one of the three representatives summoned from Rutland in July 1401 to attend a great council; and at some point over the next four years he became deputy to Ralph, earl of Westmorland, the marshal of England. His official duties were largely concerned with the day to day business of the court of chivalry, although he also assumed responsibility for the safe-keeping of prisoners, and was occasionally required to take securities from persons appearing in court. He played an important part in the organization of tournaments and similar events, being paid £10 6s.9d. in January 1406 for his expenses in putting up bars and railings at Smithfield for the Christmas jousts.5 All these services were rewarded, first, in the following July, with a grant of property in London and Middlesex temporarily confiscated from William Tamworth* (for which he undertook to pay an annual rent of £10), and then, four years later, with the wardship of the estates and heir of the late Thomas Ludlow of Horton in Kent. He also found it easy to obtain a writ of supersedeas when being sued for debt in March 1408, and it is interesting to note that both his mainpernors on this occasion were Yorkshiremen. Not surprisingly, in view of his work as deputy marshal, Mauleverer evidently spent some of his time at Court: in July 1408, for example, he witnessed Henry IV’s confirmation of earlier letters patent granted to one Henry Whissh. As no more is heard of him after this date we may assume that he soon either died or retired from public life. He is not known to have left any children, although the William Mauleverer of Uppingham, Rutland, who made his will in June 1442, may well have been his son.6
Ref Volumes: 1386-1421
- 1. CFR, x. 36, 53; CIPM, xv. nos. 921-6; CCR, 1389-92, p. 500; Rot. Gasc. et Franc. ed. Car