NICHOLAS, Richard (by 1532-79 or later), of Calne, Wilts.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
Available from Boydell and Brewer




Family and Education

b. by 1532. ?m. at least 1s.1

Offices Held

Burgess, Calne by 1553-79, guild steward 1563.2


Nicholas may have been related to the neighbouring family of Nicholas of Roundway, near Bishops Cannings, and if so he was perhaps named after the Richard Nicholas who succeeded to Roundway in 1502. He seems to have been assessed for subsidy only in 1560. Although Nicholas and Allen are entered under Calne on the Crown Office list for the Parliament of 1558, for an unascertained reason neither appears on the copy revised for the second session.3

It is probable that the Member had a son and namesake, since he is called Richard Nicholas the elder in the accounts which he rendered as joint guild steward, the highest office in Calne. Nothing else is known about him, except that in 1562/3 he was granted a lease for the winter of some of the town’s common lands, in consideration of 10s. still owed to him for his attendance in Parliament. This item, the sole indication that Calne paid parliamentary expenses in the early 16th century, is an illustration of the burden which they imposed on smaller boroughs.4

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: T. F.T. Baker


  • 1. Date of birth estimated from first reference. Wilts. Arch. Soc. res. br. vii. 5.
  • 2. C219/21/177, 23/143; Wilts. Arch. Soc. recs. br. vii. pp. xxi, xxviii.
  • 3. Wilts. Vis. Peds. (Harl. Soc. cv, cvi), 141-3; VCH Wilts. vii. 191; Wilts. Arch. Soc. recs. br. vii. 1-5; A. E. W. Marsh, Calne, 333; C193/32/2; Wm. Salt. Lib. SMS 264.
  • 4. Wilts. Arch. Soc. recs. br. vii. 3; VCH Wilts. v. 114.