MARNEY, Sir John (by 1485-1525), of Layer Marney, Essex and London.

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 1485, s. of Henry Marney, 1st Baron Marny by Thomasin, da. of Sir John Arundell of Lanherne, Cornw. educ. L. Inn, adm. 10 Mar. 1499. m. (1) settlement 12 July 1510, Christian (d. 6 Aug. 1517), da. of Sir Roger Newburgh of East Lulworth, Dorset, 2da.; (2) settlement 19 Oct. 1518, Bridget, da. of Sir William Waldegrave of Smallbridge, Suff., wid. of William Findern of Little Horkesley, Essex. Kntd. 25 Sept. 1513; suc. fa. as 2nd Baron Marny 24 May 1523.2

Offices Held

Esquire of the body by 1509, knight by 1514; keeper, Rochester castle, Kent 18 May 1509; steward, duchy of Lancaster, Higham Ferrers, Northants. 21 June 1509-27 May 1523, (with fa.) Essex, Herts. and Mdx. 30 May 1514-23; j.p. Dorset 1511-14, Essex 1512-d.; commr. subsidy, Essex 1512, 1514, 1515, 1523, 1524; other commissions, Essex 1512-d.; bailiff, Rochford hundred, Essex by 1523-d.3


John Marney’s father promoted his career and married him to a Dorset heiress but he was to make little mark during his comparatively short life. Early brought on to two county benches, he served under his father in the French campaign of 1513 and was present at Henry VIII’s meetings with the French King and the Emperor at the Field of Cloth of Gold, Gravelines and Canterbury. Although he is known to have sat only in the Parliament of 1523, he had probably done so in one or more before that time. In 1523 he may well have been one of the knights for Essex, as his father had doubtless been before elevation to the Lords and as his brother-in-law Thomas Bonham was to be six years later. His presence in that Parliament is attested by an incident reported by William Roper. During its first session Wolsey came into the House and demanded agreement to the subsidy; when his speech met with silence he turned to Marney with the question ‘How say you, Mr. Marney?’ but received no reply. After his father’s death during the first prorogation Marney sat in the Lords but no trace has been found of a by-election to fill the vacancy in the Commons. Marney secured a private Act (14 and 15 Hen. VIII, c.27) during this session renewing the grant of the borough of Buckingham made to his father after the attainder of the 3rd Duke of Buckingham. Marney was to survive his father by less than two years, dying on 27 Apr. 1525. By a will made on the previous 10 Mar. he had asked for burial at Layer Marney in a tomb to be erected for the purpose and with masses for his soul, and had provided for his wife, daughters and kinsmen. The will, with two codicils added early in April, was proved in June, the executors including his brothers-in-law Sir Edmund Bedingfield and Thomas Bonham and Bishop Tunstall of London. The wardships of his daughters Catherine and Elizabeth, aged ten and eight, were acquired by the 3rd Duke of Norfolk and Robert Radcliffe, 10th Lord Fitzwalter, even while he lay ‘drawing the draughts of death’.4

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: M. K. Dale


  • 1. Did not serve for the full duration of the Parliament; Roper, Life of More (EETS cxcvii), 18.
  • 2. Date of birth estimated from education. CP; C142/44/92.
  • 3. LP Hen. VIII, i-iv; Somerville, Duchy, i. 587, 606; Statutes, iii. 84, 115, 169.
  • 4. Elton, Tudor Rev. in Govt. 54, 63, 122; Studies in Tudor and Stuart Pol. and Govt. 118, 318; C. G. Cruickshank, Army Royal, 34, 45, 47, 107; Eng. Occupation of Tournai, 87 LP Hen. VIII, ii-iv; Roper, 18; C142/40/7-11; 43/6, 13; 44/92-93; PCC 35 Bodfelde; Trans. Essex Arch. Soc. iv. 148-63; RCHM Essex, iii. 157; Pevsner and Radcliffe, Essex, 263.