MYNORS, Sir Roger (by 1478-1537), of Windley Hill, Derbys. and Treago, Herefs.
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Family and Education
b. by 1478, 1st s. of Richard Mynors of Treago, and bro. of Reginald. m. 1500/1, Alice, da. of Sir William Mill of Harescombe, Glos., wid. of Nicholas Kniveton of Mercaston, Derbys., s.p. Kntd. 20 June 1527; suc. fa. by 1528.1
J.p. Derbys. 1502-d., Herefs. 1528-32; gent. usher by 1509; serjeant of the cellar 1509-23 or later, of the buttery 1509-20; commr. subsidy, Derbys. 1512, 1514, 1523, 1524; other commissions, Derbys. and Herefs. 1517-35; sheriff, Notts. and Derbys. 1513-14.2
There is no trace of a Mynors family in Derbyshire before the 16th century nor any mention of Roger Mynors in the pedigree of the Lichfield family of that name as it is recorded in the Staffordshire visitations. That the Derbyshire knight of the shire in the Parliament of 1529 was of Herefordshire stock, a son of Richard Mynors of Treago, is borne out by Mynors’s references in his will to his property in that county and by his mention of his brother Thomas, clearly Richard Mynors’s third son.3
It was his marriage to Alice Mill which established Mynors in Derbyshire. She must have been much older than her second husband, for her son John Kniveton was already in his late ’teens. The couple were married without a licence—presumably needed because part of the Kniveton property was held by knight service and the heir was under age—and for this dereliction they sued out a pardon on 29 Nov. 1501. In 1514 Mynors was settled at Windley Hill, three miles south of Belper, on part of the Kniveton inheritance.4
Although he was active in county administration, Mynors’s career lay elsewhere, in the royal household. It was one into which he was drawn both by inheritance and by marriage. His father had been an usher of the chamber to both Edward IV and Richard III, and was succeeded as usher to Henry VII by Nicholas Kniveton, whose widow’s marriage with Roger Mynors has the air of a professional alliance. The younger Mynors had become a gentleman usher by 1509 and it was in this capacity that he attended Henry VII’s funeral, but the new reign saw his promotion first to be serjeant of the cellar and then to the same status in the buttery. He accompanied Henry VIII on his French campaign in 1513, and in 1520 he was at the Field of Cloth of Gold and at the meeting with Charles V at Gravelines. His post in the buttery he kept until November 1520 and that in the cellar until at least 1523, although as he was assessed for subsidy (at £100) as a member of the Household in both 1524 and 1527 he may have retained the second one somewhat longer until succeeded by his younger brother Thomas, who was in the buttery in 1532 and ‘of the buttery and cellar’ at the time of Anne Boleyn’s coronation. Roger Mynors received the customary reward for his services. Already in November 1509 he had received a 21-year lease, renewable throughout his life, of Wirksworth manor in Derbyshire and about 1525 this and neighbouring property was granted to him. In 1523 he was made steward of a castle and lordship in Herefordshire and given the custody of Postern park in Duffield, Derbyshire, during the minority of Henry Bradshaw. His knighting in 1527 may have accompanied his succession to his Herefordshire patrimony, and in the following year he was added to the commission of the peace in his native county.5
It was thus as a retired officer of the Household and landed gentleman that Mynors entered the House of Commons in 1529. The list of Members of that Parliament is torn at the point where the names of the Derbyshire knights occur on it, but enough letters are left to identify them as Mynors and William Coffin. If Mynors’s position in the county made him eligible for election, it was the King’s decision to have the writs for Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire delivered by the 3rd Duke of Norfolk which must explain why he was chosen: the writs were doubtless accompanied by nominations when they reached the sheriff, Nicholas Strelley, himself a long-standing member of the Household. Like Coffin, whose career shows a striking resemblance to his own, Mynors thus ranks as a royal nominee. As a surviving Member of this Parliament in 1536 he is also likely to have sat in its successor of that year, when the King asked for the re-election of the previous Members. Of his role in the proceedings of the Commons nothing is known.