READE, Thomas (d.1595), of Osterley, Mdx.

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

1st s. of Sir William Reade of Osterley by his 1st w. Gertrude, da. of Sir William Paston of Norf. educ. St. John’s, Camb. 1583, MA 1594. m. Mildred, da. of (Sir) Thomas Cecil, 1st Earl of Exeter, s.p. Kntd. 1592.

Offices Held

J.p. Mdx. from c.1592; ?Berks. from c.1583.


Reade’s paternal grandmother’s second husband was Sir Thomas Gresham, in whose household the children and grandchildren of her first marriage were brought up. After Gresham’s death in 1579 she and her family continued to reside at Osterley, and it was Reade and his mother who assisted her in her attempts to defraud other beneficiaries under her second husband’s will. No doubt it was the Cecils who had Reade returned at Peterborough. No record has been found of any parliamentary activity in 1589, but in 1593 he was appointed to a committee on the poor law (12 Mar.), and he was involved in the subsidy negotiations, being on both committees (26 Feb. and 1 Mar.) and on the delegation sent by the Commons to explain matters to the Lords (3 Mar.). He seems to have suffered a cerebral affliction in 1595, (Sir) Thomas Cecil writing to his brother on 9 July:

the news of my son Read doth not a little touch me in conceit, both for his own sake and my daughter’s; for of all worldly things it is hardest to recover a wit lost. It is a great cross to his friends but a much greater to himself, for to lose it is much more unfortunate than never to have had it.

Reade, who had died intestate (and v.p.) six days earlier, was buried on 14 July in Gresham’s vault at Osterley. Letters of administration were granted to ‘Henry Dennying of Isleworth, yeoman’.

Mdx. Peds. (Harl. Soc. lxv), 56; J. W. Burgon, Life and Times Thos. Gresham, i. 52; ii. 491; CSP Dom. 1595-7, pp. 139, 328, 329; VCH Mdx. iii. 109; D’Ewes, 474, 481, 486, 499; HMC Hatfield, iv. 292, 295; v. 273; PCC admon. act bk. 1595, f. 142.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: S. M. Thorpe