DUTTON, John (1594-1657), of Sherborne Park, Sherborne, Glos.
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Family and Education
bap. 5 Oct. 1594, 3rd but 1st surv. s. of William Dutton of Sherborne and Anne, da. of Sir Ambrose Nicholas, Salter, of London, ld. mayor 1575-6.1 educ. Exeter Coll. Oxf. 1609, BA 1612, DCL 1642; I. Temple 1613.2 m. (1) settlement 5 July 1619,3 Elizabeth (d. 28 Apr. 1638), da. of Sir Henry Bayntun* of Bromham, Wilts., 1s. d.v.p. 3da. (2 d.v.p.); (2) 1648, Anne, da. of John King, bp. of London 1611-21, s.p. suc. fa. 1618. d. 14 Jan. 1657.4 sig. John Dutton.
J.p. Glos. 1619-27, 1628-at least 1641, liberty of Slaughter, Glos. 1624, 1633-4, 1637;5 dep. lt. Glos. by 1624-5,6 1642;7 commr. subsidy, Glos. 1621-2, 1624, 1641-2,8 sewers 1625, 1635, oyer and terminer, Oxf. circ. 1625-42,9 Forced Loan, Glos. 1627,10 charitable uses 1630,11 repair of St. Paul’s Cathedral 1632,12 gaol delivery, liberty of Slaughter 1637,13 array, Glos. 1642,14 excise (roy.), Oxon., Northants., Warws., Berks. and Bucks. 1645.15
Dutton’s grandfather, a cadet of the Cheshire family, purchased the former monastic estate of Sherborne in 1551 for £3,000.16 His father greatly increased the family’s holdings in Gloucestershire and neighbouring counties,17 served as deputy lieutenant to the 7th Lord Berkeley,18 and left ‘the great house’ at Northleach and £200 to the poor thereof, ‘to keep the people from idleness by setting them to work’.19 Dutton, known as ‘Crump Dutton’ from his humped back,20 inherited at least nine manors in Gloucestershire and Worcestershire and was reputedly one of the richest men in England.21 He was able to settle lands worth £500 a year on his first wife.22
In February 1622 Dutton was among those, together with (Sir) Thomas Thynne* and Sir William Sandys, summoned before the Privy Council, ‘about some matters wherewith you shall be made acquainted’.23 He was the undisputed choice for the senior Gloucestershire seat in 1624, and was returned in the junior place in 1625, but left no mark on the records of the proceedings of either Parliament. He joined in the widespread Gloucestershire opposition to the Forced Loan of 1626-7, refusing either to serve as a commissioner or to subscribe himself.24 His failure to report a local clergyman’s letter against the Loan exposed him to severe treatment.25 He was summoned before the Council three times in March and April 1627 and again in June, when he was imprisoned in the Gatehouse and ordered into confinement at Oxford a month later. In September he was among those who had ‘not repaired to the places appointed by His Majesty’ but the Council ordered his release in January 1628.26 However, he retained links with the Court; in the following year he sought the help of the Gloucestershire courtier Endymion Porter† in a dispute with the vicar of Sherborne.27 At the spring election of 1640 he was one of the foremost supporters of Sir Robert Tracy*,28 and succeeded him as knight of the shire in the Long Parliament until disabled for royalism in 1644. He subsequently compounded for over £5,000.29 Despite his royalist sympathies he became a friend of Cromwell, to whom he entrusted the guardianship of his nephew and heir, William Dutton, asking him, ‘according to the discourse that hath passed betwixt us’, to further the boy’s marriage with the Protector’s youngest daughter. He died exactly a year after making his will, and was buried in the vault ‘which I have lately caused to be made in the aisle of Sherborne church’ on 18 Feb. 1657. His epitaph describes him as ‘one who was master of a large fortune, and owner of a mind equal to it; noted for his great hospitality far and near, and his charitable relief of the poor’.30 Another nephew succeeded to the estates in 1675, sat for Gloucestershire as a Whig in six parliaments from 1679, and purchased a baronetcy in 1678. Dutton’s portrait survives at Sherborne Park, Gloucestershire.31
Ref Volumes: 1604-1629
Authors: Alan Davidson / Ben Coates
- 1. Vis. Glos. (Harl. Soc. xxi), 54; Hist. and Gen. Mems. of Dutton Fam. of Sherborne comp. B. Morgan, 70, 103.
- 2. Al. Ox.; I. Temple Admiss.
- 3. Cal. Charters in Muniment Room at Sherborne House, 11.
- 4. Hist. and Gen. Mems. of Dutton Fam. of Sherborne, 246; Cal. Charters in the Mun. Room at Sherborne House, 11; I.M. Roper, ‘Monumental Effigies’, Bristol and Glos. Arch. Soc. Trans. xxxiii. 106.
- 5. C231/4, ff. 80, 166, 261; 231/5, pp. 109, 125, 247; BRL, 603503/72; C66/2859.
- 6. SP14/178/11, 16/2/91.
- 7. LJ, v. 291.
- 8. C212/22/20-1, 23; SR, v. 84, 151.
- 9. C181/3, ff. 137v, 172; 181/5, ff. 13, 218.
- 10. C193/12/2, f. 21.
- 11. C93/12/3.
- 12. Glos. RO, TBR A1/1, f. 80.
- 13. C181/5, f. 71.
- 14. Northants. RO, FH133.
- 15. Docquets of Letters Patent 1642-6 ed. W.H. Black, 259.
- 16. VCH Glos. vi. 123; Cal. Charters in Muniment Room at Sherborne House, 3.
- 17. Cal. Charters in the Mun. Room at Sherborne House, 58, 63, 75.
- 18. C66/1618.
- 19. Hist. and Gen. Mems. of Dutton Fam. of Sherborne, 79.
- 20. Cal. of the Corresp. of Smyth Fam. of Ashton Ct. ed. J.H. Betty (Bristol Rec. Soc. xxxv), 163.
- 21. M.F. Keeler, Long Parl.
- 22. Cal. Charters in Mun. Room at Sherborne House, 11.
- 23. APC, 1621-3, p. 134. An almost identical list of names, including Dutton’s, is to be found in an undated entry at the beg. of a previous vol. of the Privy Council register: see APC, 1618-19, p. 287.
- 24. CSP Dom. 1627-8, p. 59.
- 25. T. Birch, Ct. and Times of Chas. I, i. 212.
- 26. APC, 1627, pp. 125, 176, 195, 368, 374, 449; 1627-8, pp. 58, 217,
- 27. CSP Dom. 1628-9, p. 586.
- 28. Hist. and Gen. Mems. of Dutton Fam. of Sherborne, 146.
- 29. CCC, 1273.
- 30. PROB 11/265, ff. 336-8; Hist. and Gen. Mems. of Dutton Fam. of Sherborne, 124.
- 31. Oxford DNB.