DALLISON, Sir Maximilian (c.1579-1631), of Bishop's Place, Halling, Kent and St. John Street, Clerkenwell, Mdx.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1604-1629, ed. Andrew Thrush and John P. Ferris, 2010
Available from Cambridge University Press



Family and Education

b. c.Jan. 1579,1 o.s. of William Dallison of Halling and Silvester, da. of Robert Dean of Halling. m. (1) by June 1604,2 Paulina (bur. 21 Nov. 1607), da. of Sir Michael Sondes† of Throwley, Kent, s.p.; (2) 3 Oct. 1608, (with £1,500),3 Mary (d. 24 Nov. 1631), da. of Sir William Spencer† of Yarnton, Oxon. 7s. (2 d.v.p.) 3da. (1 d.v.p.) suc. fa. 1581; kntd. 11 May 1603. d. 9 Nov. 1631.4 sig. Maximilian Dalyson.

Offices Held

J.p. Kent 1602-Jan. 1603,5 by Sept. 1603-at least 1629, Mdx. 1620-?, 1627-at least 1629;6 asst. bridge warden, Rochester, Kent 1604-d.;7 commr. sewers, Gravesend, Kent 1610, Kent and Suss. 1616-at least 1628,8 subsidy, Kent 1610-11, 1621, 1624, Rochester 1621, 1624;9 sheriff, Kent 1611-12;10 commr. oyer and terminer, Mdx. 1621, London 1630;11 freeman, Rochester 1624;12 commr. Forced Loan, Kent 1626-7, Rochester 1626;13 gaol delivery, Newgate 1630;14 gov. Sir John Hawkins’ hosp. Rochester at d.15


Dallison’s paternal grandfather, the Queen’s Bench judge William Dallison, lived in Lincoln and represented Lincolnshire in Parliament in 1553. Dallison’s father, a Gray’s Inn lawyer, settled at Halling in Kent after marrying the daughter of a Kentish gentleman in 1574. Dallison himself was about two when his father died in 1581. His wardship was acquired for £60 by Edward Dodge, a customs officer who owned property at nearby Wrotham,16 but by 1597 control of the estate had passed to his uncles, Thomas* and Robert Dallison. In that year Dallison, then aged about 18, prosecuted both uncles for failing to transfer the estate to him by the time specified in his father’s will and for withholding £480 needed to compound for his marriage and sue for his livery. Robert initially refused to submit his accounts as co-executor even after he was imprisoned in the Fleet, but he caved in after being ordered to be confined to his cell. By May 1599, thanks to the intervention of Dallison’s step-father, William Lambarde†, a settlement was reached, whereby Thomas agreed to pay the outstanding sum of £480 to Edward Hubberd†, perhaps the ‘Mr. Hubbert’ described as one of the ‘friends and well-willers to the ward’.17 The following year, Dallison was granted livery of his estates, which were located in Lincolnshire and Sussex as well as Kent, where he leased some property from his neighbour, Sir John Leveson*.18 An undated note by Dallison records that his annual rental income was just over £217.19

Dallison was knighted shortly after James’s accession. Following the collapse of the 1614 Parliament he contributed £20 to the Benevolence.20 He failed to fulfil his late father’s expectation that he would become a lawyer,21 but instead pursued his own pleasures. In November 1615 Dallison’s friend, the disgraced lieutenant of the Tower, Sir Gervase Elwes, recalled from the scaffold how they had ‘turned days into nights and nights into days’ and urged him to abandon gambling and to ‘dishonour God no more by breaking His sabbath’.22 In August 1619 Dallison and his wife were among the guests of Lady Anne Clifford at Knole, where they afforded their hostess ‘great entertainment and much stir’.23 A dislike of administrative duties perhaps explains why Dallison was an inactive member of the board of governors of the Sir John Hawkins’ Hospital in Rochester.

In 1621 Dallison was granted a pass to travel to Spain to recover his health.24 Returned to Parliament for Rochester in 1624, where he had inherited property from his mother,25 he made no recorded speeches and was named to just four committees. These concerned bills for the examination of Exchequer abuses (26 Feb.), a dispute between Lord Wharton and Edward Willoughby (17 Mar.), the New River (22 Mar.) and the sale of lands belonging to Sir Francis Clarke (23 March).26 In 1626 Dallison brought an action against John Wriothesley of Frindsbury, whom he accused of failing to disclose the existence of encumbrances on a number of small properties in north Kent that he had bought from him four years earlier.27 Dallison was himself the object of litigation in February 1630, when the former bishop of Rochester, Walter Curle, charged him with conspiring with a tenant to prevent the possessions of one of Dallison’s retainers, who had committed suicide, from falling into episcopal hands.28

Dallison drafted his will on 30 Nov. 1630,29 when he appointed as his executors his half-brother Sir Multon Lambarde and his ‘very loving friend’ Sir Edward Hales*, to whom he had earlier appealed for assistance after one of his sons had promised to ‘shake off his old bad acquaintances’.30 He bequeathed £300 to each of his four surviving younger sons, and allocated £1,600 to his two remaining daughters, which was to be invested in land. His wife was to receive £100, and by the terms of her marriage settlement of 23 July 1608,31 she was also entitled to various properties in Chatham and elsewhere. Dallison died on 9 Nov. 1631 at his house in St. John’s Street, Clerkenwell,32 perhaps the victim of disease, as his wife followed him to the grave 15 days later. He was buried, ‘with escutchions and pall and other ceremonies’,33 on 12 Nov. at St. James’s Clerkenwell, near his father and first wife, in accordance with his wishes. None of his direct descendants sat in Parliament.

Ref Volumes: 1604-1629

Author: Andrew Thrush


  • 1. C142/196/9.
  • 2. C2/Chas.I/D21/45.
  • 3. Cent. Kent. Stud. U522/T127, unnumb. item.
  • 4. Arch. Cant. xv. 402; Cent. Kent. Stud. U522/F1/2; St. James’ Clarkenwell (Harl. Soc. Reg. xvii), iv. 100; Shaw, Knights of Eng. ii. 106.
  • 5. C231/1, ff. 148, 151.
  • 6. C231/4, ff. 99, 235; C66/2527.
  • 7. Traffic and Pols. ed. N. Yates and J.M. Gibson, 294.
  • 8. C181/2, ff. 106, 247v, 328v; J.R. Scott, Scott, of Scot’s-Hall, xii (name mis-spelt).
  • 9. F.F. Smith, Rochester in Parl. 109; E115/252/104; 115/254/79; C212/22/20, 23.
  • 10. List of Sheriffs comp. A. Hughes (PRO, L. and I. ix), 69.
  • 11. C181/3, f. 21; 181/4, f. 34.
  • 12. Rochester, Guildhall Mus. customal, new f. 43.
  • 13. Harl. 6846, f. 37; CSP Dom. 1627-8, p. 253; C193/12/2, f. 86.
  • 14. C181/4, f. 34.
  • 15. Hawkins’ hosp. Rochester, min. bk. 101.
  • 16. WARD 9/221, f. 142; PROB 11/91, f. 57v; E211/111.
  • 17. WARD 9/525, unfol. entries of 12 Nov. 1597, 11, 24 and 26 May 1598, 17 and 20 June 1598, 1 and 17 July 1598, 21 May 1599; Cent. Kent Stud. U522/T137.
  • 18. Cent. Kent. Stud. U522/L1/4; Staffs. RO, D593/H/14/1/2, unfol.
  • 19. Cent. Kent. Stud. U522/F1/3A.
  • 20. Staffs. RO, D593/S/4/60/3.
  • 21. PROB 11/63, ff. 318v-19.
  • 22. State Trials ed. T.B. Howell, ii. 944-5.
  • 23. Diary of Lady Anne Clifford ed. V. Sackville-West, 106.
  • 24. APC, 1621-3, p. 16.
  • 25. Arch. Cant. xxi. 323; Rochester Stud. Cent. RCA/N3/4.
  • 26. CJ, i. 674b, 688a, 745a, 747a.
  • 27. C2/Chas.I/D44/46.
  • 28. C2/Chas.I/B11/22; 2/Chas.I/B170/70.
  • 29. Cent. Kent. Stud. U522/T125/1.
  • 30. Cent. Kent. Stud. U522/F1/3.
  • 31. Cent. Kent. Stud. U522/T127, unnumb. item.
  • 32. Misc. Gen. et Her. (ser. 2), ii. 117.
  • 33. Arch. Cant. xv. 400.