TRIVET, Thomas, of Cambridge.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1386-1421, ed. J.S. Roskell, L. Clark, C. Rawcliffe., 1993
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Sept. 1397

Family and Education

Offices Held

Tax collector, Cambridge Jan. 1392.

Mayor, Cambridge Sept. 1399-1402.1

J.p. Cambridge 12 Mar. 1400-Jan. 1402.

Commr. of array, Cambridge Nov. 1403.


Trivet was living in Cambridge by 1380, when he was engaged in suits against a man from nearby Chesterton, who owed him £5 10s., and against Henry Hounsden and his wife for a debt of ten marks.2 He was one of a number of leading burgesses who, on 23 Feb. following, were bound in recognizances of £100 each to keep the peace. This was after they had been charged with inciting the townspeople against the royal justices and interfering with the sessions held in the town. Later in the same year, he was accused in a petition to the Crown, presented by the master and scholars of Corpus Christi college, of having been in the forefront of a mob which, at the time of the Peasants’ Revolt, had attacked the university; the subsequent inquiry conducted in Parliament in December 1381 led to the forfeiture of the borough’s liberties, its committal to the custody of Richard Maisterman* and the permanent transfer of certain franchises to the university.3

Although Trivet was active in local affairs, when first returned as parliamentary burgess in 1397 he had held no office save that of tax collector; but in September 1399 he was elected mayor and continued in office for two years running, in the course of which he was appointed to the commission of the peace. It was shortly after his term ended that he sat in the Commons for the second time. There is no evidence to show whether he was a regular parliamentary elector, although in 1395, 1406 and 1407 he stood surety for the attendance in the Lower House of John Thriplow, John Knapton and Thomas Beverley, respectively. Occasionally he was mentioned on writs from Chancery as a mainpernor for litigants from Cambridgeshire.4

Mayors of Cambridge were normally men of substance, and it appears that Trivet was no exception. In 1382 he had been able to take on a lease from the master and scholars of Merton hall, Oxford, of all their property in Cambridge together with the farm of all their land elsewhere in the shire for seven years, rendering an annual payment of £20; and ten years later he was also renting ‘Lancaster demesne’ at Barton (some three miles from Cambridge) from Corpus Christi college, his earlier destructive encounter with the clerks evidently having been overlooked. At Barton he sublet both demesne and bond land to the tenants for the duration of his lease, and no doubt made a profit on the transaction. Of his more permanent holdings little information remains, save that in 1391 he purchased two messuages, 42 acres of land and 10s. rent at Fulbourn.5 He is not recorded after 1407.

Ref Volumes: 1386-1421

Author: E.M. Wade


Variants: Trevet, Treveth, Tryvet.

  • 1. J.M. Gray, Biogs. Mayors Cambridge, 16; Add. 5833, f. 133d.
  • 2. CPR, 1377-81, p. 522.
  • 3. Cambridge Antiq. Soc. lv. 62; CCR, 1377-81, p. 513; C.H. Cooper, Annals, i. 119, 122; CPR, 1381-5, p. 143; RP, iii. 106-7.
  • 4. CPR, 1385-9, pp. 609, 615; 1402-5, p. 128.
  • 5. Add. 5832, ff. 76-77; CP25(1)30/90/110; VCH Cambs. v. 168.