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|1558/9||SIR AMBROSE CAVE 1|
|THOMAS LUCY 2|
|1562/3||SIR AMBROSE CAVE|
|1571||(SIR) THOMAS LUCY|
|21 Apr. 1572||SIR WILLIAM DEVEREUX|
|31 Mar. 1575||(SIR) JOHN HUBAND vice Throckmorton, deceased3|
|30 Nov. 1578||GEORGE DIGBY vice Devereux, deceased4|
|16 Nov. 1584||(SIR) THOMAS LUCY|
|17 Oct. 1586 (writ)||(SIR) JOHN HARINGTON II|
|14 Oct. 1588||FULKE GREVILLE|
|3 Oct. 1597||FULKE GREVILLE|
|SIR ROBERT DIGBY|
Sir Ambrose Cave, chancellor of the duchy of Lancaster and Privy Councillor, held estates in Warwickshire and had no difficulty in obtaining the senior seat in the first two Parliaments of the reign. He died in 1568. His fellow MPs were Thomas Lucy of Charlecote and Clement Throckmorton of Haseley, both of whom were of sufficient standing to represent the county on more than one occasion. After being junior knight to Cave in 1559, Lucy was knighted in 1565 and achieved the senior seat in 1571 and 1584. Clement Throckmorton was junior knight in both 1563 and 1572. When Throckmorton died, in 1573, he was replaced by his brother-in-law (Sir)John Huband, servant of both the Earl of Leicester and the Earl of Warwick. Huband, who owned the Warwickshire estates of Hillbarrow, Ippsley and Temple Grafton, had already sat as junior knight in 1571. Another by-election during the long 1579 Parliament was caused by the death in 1570 of Sir William Devereux of Merevale, whose considerable estates and family connexions had made him an obvious choice to take his turn as senior knight in 1572: he was replaced by George Digby of Coleshill for the 1581 session. Digby was related to the Throckmortons, and was a follower of the Earl of Leicester; he sat again in 1584 and his son Sir Robert sat in 1601. (Sir)John Harington II (1586), whose family came from Rutland, had married a Warwickshire heiress in 1572 and so acquired the estate of Combe Abbey on her father’s death in 1581. Harington was well-connected, counting the Earl of Leicester and the Sidneys of Penshurst among his relatives. The junior knight in 1586 was Fulke Greville of Beauchamp’s Court, whose parliamentary career is remarkable. He represented Warwickshire in five consecutive Parliaments (1586, 1589, 1593, 1597, 1601), being junior knight in 1586 and senior knight in the remaining four Parliaments, even though he had not yet succeeded to his estates. In addition to the enormous prestige his family enjoyed in the county, Greville himself was a courtier, a friend of Sir Philip Sidney and one of the Queen’s favourites. In 1589 his fellow MP was his brother-in-law Richard Verney of Compton, and in 1593 his cousin the unpopular Edward Greville, of Milcote. William Combe (1597) was a Middle Temple lawyer, whose family lived in Warwickshire and who was related to several substantial county families.
In 1601 there was an attempt by the Warwickshire gentry, led by the sheriff, Sir Thomas Lucy, to break Fulke Greville’s monopoly of the senior county seat, but Greville was in favour at court, and the Privy Council put such pressure on the sheriff that Greville was again elected.5
- 1. E371/402(1).