BEVILL, Robert (d.1602), of Chesterton, Hunts.

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 William Bevill of Chesterton by Margaret, da. of Nicholas Bourman of I.o.W. m. Joan, da. of William Lawrence of St. Ives, Hunts., 2s. 6da. suc. fa. 1553.1

Offices Held

J.p. Hunts. from c.1574; sheriff, Cambs. and Hunts. 1576-7, 1588-9; twice a collector of a loan, Hunts.; commr. sewers in the fens.2


Bevill’s return as senior knight of the shire in 1584 was marked by a contested election, though it is probable that only the junior seat was in dispute (between Francis Cromwell and John Dorrington). On 8 Dec. 1584 the Speaker asked for the opinion of the House on the validity of the election of certain knights of the shire. Bevill, suspecting the Speaker to be referring to himself and Dorrington, spoke in their defence on the same day. On 12 Dec. he complained that: ‘upon speech uttered by him in the House, another Member of the same had challenged him and used divers unseemly speeches to him and told him that he had made many lies, and desired reformation’. The matter was mentioned again (inconclusively) on 21 Dec. Bevill was a member of the subsidy committee on 24 Feb. 1585.3

He never sat in Parliament again, though continuing active in local affairs. In 1592 he, with other Huntingdonshire justices, was ordered to take the oath of supremacy. His will was protestant in tone, asking for ‘some godly and learned sermon’ to be preached at his funeral. His lands, which were mainly in Huntingdonshire and Northamptonshire and included considerable former monastic property, he left in tail male to his only surviving son Robert, whom he appointed sole executor. Other bequests were mainly to daughters and kinsmen. He died 27 Nov. 1602.4

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: Roger Virgoe


  • 1. Vis. Hunts. (Cam. Soc. xliii.), 8-9; VCH Hunts. iii. 140; CSP Dom. 1547-80, p. 60.
  • 2. APC, xx. 187; xxviii. 559; xxix. 329; Cal. Hunts. Feet of Fines, ed. Turner (Cambridge Antiq. Soc. Pubs. (Oct. ser.) xxxvii.) 152, 153, 156 etc.
  • 3. Neale, Commons, 49; D’Ewes, 337, 338, 344-5, 356; Trinity, Dublin, Thos. Cromwell’s jnl. f. 76; and see DORRINGTON, John.
  • 4. APC, xxiii. 258; PCC 2 Bolein; C142/281/61.