BERKELEY, Roland (1548-1611), of Worcester.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1558-1603, ed. P.W. Hasler, 1981
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

b. 1548, 8th but e. surv. s. of William Berkeley of Hereford by Elizabeth, da. of William Burghill of Cowarne, Herefs. educ. Oxf.  m. 1574, Catherine, da. of Thomas Heywood of Gloucester, 6s. 8da.

Offices Held

Member of the 48, Worcester 1578, chamberlain 1583-4, bailiff ?1585-6, ?1586-7, ?1587-8; first master of Worcester clothiers’ co. 1590.


His ‘ancient friend’ Thomas Habington, author of A Survey of Worcestershire, described Berkeley as

a man of very good wit, which he furnished with learning initiate in Oxford, but chiefly gained out of stolen hours, and hardly spared from his continual business in his vocation; by which course, joined with experience and observations, growing to be of deep judgment, he attained to be for government such a magistrate as that he gained love, respect and obedience, which if the city of Worcester, where he lived divers years, will not acknowledge, his after service for them in Parliament (where he showed himself their friend and a good commonwealth man) will testify for him.

As burgess for Worcester, Berkeley was appointed to a number of committees concerning cloth (14 Mar. 1593), malt (9 Nov. 1597, 12 Jan. 1598), bread (13, Jan. 1598) and assurance of certain manors (9 Dec. 1601). On 4 Apr. 1593 he was named to the committee considering the bill for ‘reducing disloyal subjects to their true obedience’. After the turn of the century he bought estates in various parts of the county. He died 1 June 1611. His second son Robert became a judge.


Vis. Worcs. (Harl. Soc. xc), 11; Nash, Worcs. i. 258; ii. 358-60, app. cxii; Worcester Guildhall, audit of city accts. 1540-1600, passim; VCH Worcs. ii. 291-2; iii. 525-7, 552; iv. 140, 225; Habington’s Worcs. (Worcs. Hist. Soc.), ii. 281-2; PCC 54 Wood; C142/325/181; D’Ewes, 501, 517, 554, 578, 579, 673-4.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: Patricia Hyde


  • 1. Did not serve for the full duration of the Parliament.