TYRRELL, Maurice (by 1520-63 or later).

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 1520, yr. s. of Sir John Tyrrell (d.1541) of Little Warley, Essex by 2nd w. Anne, da. of Sir Edward Norris of Yattendon, Berks.1

Offices Held


Maurice Tyrrell was a younger son in a cadet branch of one of the most distinguished of Essex families and must have owed his return to Parliament to his family connexions. (Sir) William Petre married his sister Gertrude and Petre’s brother Richard, a prebendary of Peterborough, could have secured his return there. Yet the fact that Tyrrell was to oppose one of the government’s bills in the Parliament of 1555 suggests that he entered the House under less Catholic auspices. His half-sister Elizabeth Hopton married Andrew Nowell, feodary of Leicestershire, Northamptonshire and other counties, and one of the feoffees named in the marriage settlement of April 1551 was John Campanett, then or shortly afterwards a Member for Peterborough. Campanett himself may have been related to the Tyrrells through his marriage to Margaret Lynne, Sir John Tyrrell’s first wife having been a Lynne of Southwick, Northamptonshire. Nowell’s feoffees also included George Lynne and another Lynne kinsman, William Gardiner, and this relationship with Gardiner could have enabled Maurice Tyrrell to call upon the influence in Peterborough of Francis Russell, 2nd Earl of Bedford, whose patronage, during his absence abroad, seems to have been wielded by Sir William Cecil.2

Despite his show of opposition in 1555, Tyrrell was returned again in 1558, this time for Leicester. In a borough which formed part of the duchy of Lancaster honor of Leicester, it cannot have told against Tyrrell that he was a kinsman of the Marian chancellors Sir Robert Rochester and Sir Edward Waldegrave (who, although not appointed until 22 Jan. 1558, was probably exercising the office beforehand); he may also have enjoyed the support of Sir Edward Hastings, receiver of Leicester honor and town clerk, who was related to his family, while George Sherard, junior knight for Leicestershire in this Parliament, was another kinsman.3

Little else has been discovered about Tyrrell. His father, in a will of 28 Feb. 1541, left him 5 marks a year for life and a sum of £20, and his mother, in hers of 17 July 1552 which was proved ten years later, bequeathed him most of her goods and chattels and appointed him one of her two executors. The Essex pedigrees derive all those of Sir John Tyrrell’s children whom they list from Anne Norris, the sole wife they name, but Maurice, the one Tyrrell mentioned in his mother’s will, may have been her only child by that marriage. Maurice Tyrrell was also an executor and witness of Andrew Nowell’s will and survived to prove it on 4 Feb. 1563. This is the last reference found to him.4

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: Alan Davidson


  • 1. Apparently of age at fa.’s death. Vis. Essex (Harl. Soc. xiii), 115, 301; Vis. Northants. ed. Metcalfe, 35.
  • 2. F. G. Emmison, Tudor Sec. 22; Le Neve, Fasti (1854), ii. 543; Guildford mus. Loseley 1331/2; CPR, 1550-3, p. 85.
  • 3. Vis. Essex, 113; Vis. Northants. (Harl. Soc. lxxxvii), 154; Vis. Leics. (Harl. Soc. ii), 10, 88.
  • 4. PCC 25 Alenger, 28 Streat, 6 Chayre; Trans. Essex Arch. Soc. iii. 92-93, 179-80.