WESTON, Sir Richard (1577-1635), of Skreens, Roxwell, Essex and St. Mary Spital, London

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



29 Mar. 1604
22 Nov. 1621

Family and Education

bap. 1 Mar. 1577, 1st s. of Sir Jerome Weston of Skreens with 1st w. Mary, da. and coh. of Anthony Cave of Chicheley, Bucks.1 educ. Trin. Camb. BA 1594; M. Temple 1594; ?travelled abroad.2 m. (1) Elizabeth (bur. 15 Feb. 1603), da. of William Pinchon of Writtle, Essex, 1s. d.v.p. 2da.; (2) by 1605, Frances (bur. 25 Feb. 1644), da. of Nicholas Waldegrave of Borley, Essex, 4s. 4da. (1 d.v.p.) kntd. 23 July 1603; suc. fa. 1603; cr. Bar. Weston of Neyland 13 Apr. 1628; KG 18 Apr. 1630; earl of Portland 17 Feb. 1633; d. 13 Mar. 1635.3 sig. R[ichard] Weston.

Offices Held

J.p. Essex 1607-d., Mdx. 1619-d., all counties 1628-d., Westminster by 1620-d., Southwell and Scrooby liberties, Notts., Cawood and Ripon liberties, Yorks. 1628-d., Huntingdon, Hunts. 1628, liberty and bor. of St. Albans, Herts. 1629-d., Haverfordwest, Pemb. 1629-d., Oxford, Oxon. 1630, Buckingham, Bucks. 1630-3, Slaughter liberty, Glos. 1633-d.;4 commr. subsidy, Essex 1608-9, 1621-2, 1624, Mdx. 1622, London 1622, 1624,5 sewers, Essex 1607-d., Essex, Herts. and Mdx. 1607-at least 1609, Essex and Mdx. 1613-at least 1622, Essex, Kent and Mdx. 1625-at least 1633, Cambs. 1627, Gt. Fens 1627-at least 1631, London 1629-at least 1632, Lincs. 1630-d., Kent and Surr., Berks and Hants 1633, Northants. 1633-d., Devon 1634, Westminster 1634,6 seize property of Robert Meade, Suff. 1611;7 collector, Privy Seal loan, Essex 1612;8 dep. lt. Essex 1613-at least 1625, 1628-9;9 commr. repair of highways, Essex 1615-at least 1622;10 jt. collector of petty customs, London 1616-23,11 pretermitted customs 1621-3;12 commr. piracy, London, Mdx., Kent, Suss., and Surr. 1619, 1630-at least 1633, Devon 1630, Cumb. 1631, oyer and terminer, London 1619-d., Mdx. 1620-d., Home circ. 1622-d., Midlands circ. 1628-d., Norf., Northern, Oxf. and Western circs. 1629-d., St. Albans (bor. and liberty), Herts. 1629-31, the Verge 1629-d., Cumb. 1630, gaol delivery, London 1619-d.,13 disafforestation, Barnwood 1622,14 enclosure, Gt. Fens 1622-4,15 nuisance, Mdx. 1624-5,16 new buildings, London 1625-30,17 Forced Loan, Essex and Mdx. 1626-7, Kent, London, Som., Surr., Wilts., Westminster, Salisbury, Wilts. Bristol, Glos. and Bath, Som. 1627,18 martial law, Essex 1628,19 charitable uses 1629-30;20 ld. lt. Essex (jt.) 1629-d., Hants (sole) 1631-d.;21 high steward, Bristol and Exeter, Devon 1630-d.;22 commr. repair of St. Paul’s Cathedral, London 1631;23 capt. I.o.W. 1631-3;24 v.-adm. Hants 1631-d.;25 commr. archery, London 1632;26 member, Council in the Marches 1633.27

Commr. reform of the Household 1617,28 Navy 1618-28,29 recovery of mortgaged Crown lands 1618,30 treating with Utd. Provinces 1619, 1624,31 abuses in silk-dyeing 1620;32 amb. extraordinary, Spanish Neths., Germany 1620-1 Spanish Neths. 1622;33 chan. exch. 1621-8;34 PC 23 Sept. 1621-d.;35 commr. defective titles 1622, 1623, 1625,36 to regulate starch manufacture 1623,37 piracy 1623, Virg. plantation 1624, to banish Jesuits 1624,38 execute office of ld. treas. 25 May-11 Dec. 1624;39 member, High Commission, Canterbury prov. 1625-d.;40 commr. customs frauds 1625,41 to enforce recusancy laws 1625,42 Navy inquiry 1626-7,43 revenue 1626,44 sale of Crown lands 1626,45 1628;46 member, Council of War 1626-at least 1629;47 ld. treas. 1628-d.;48 commr. Admlty. 1628-d.,49 transportation of felons 1628-at least 1633,50 recusancy compositions 1628-at least 1633,51 knighthood fines 1629-at least 1630,52 Crown lands compositions 1629,53 common fishing 1630,54 ordnance 1630,55 1633,56 1635,57 poor relief 1631,58 saltpetre and gunpowder 1631,59 1633,60 Great Wardrobe 1633;61 PC [S] 1633-d.;62 member, Council for Queen Henrietta Maria 1634-d.63

Member, E.I. Co. 1617;64 gov. Fishery Assoc. 1632-d.65


Weston has to be distinguished not only from the Inner Temple barrister who sat for Lichfield in 1621, but also from two other namesakes, both of whom lived at Sutton Place in Surrey. One, the 1593 Member for Petersfield, was described as ‘the hunter’ by John Chamberlain, and was knighted in 1596; the other, his son, dubbed in 1622, was the celebrated agricultural innovator.66 The ubiquity of his surname enabled Weston to produce an impressive pedigree, but in fact his ancestry can be traced no further back than to his grandfather Richard, a Middle Temple barrister, who acquired the manor of Skreens in Essex in 1555, represented Maldon that same year, and became a justice of Common Pleas in 1559. Weston’s father, a long serving Essex magistrate, built up his estate with purchases in Bedfordshire and Suffolk as well as his native county, but did not sit in the Commons.67

I. Early Years and Parliamentary Apprenticeship

The Venetian ambassador described Weston as ‘a man of deep and sagacious intellect’.68 After Cambridge he studied at the Middle Temple, where he shared chambers with his brother-in-law John Williams, subsequently expelled for Catholicism.69 According to Clarendon (Edward Hyde†), his education was ‘very good amongst books and men’ and included a period of foreign travel, although the latter was not otherwise recorded.70 Elected for Maldon at the first opportunity after coming of age, he left no trace on the records of the last Elizabethan Parliament.71

Weston inherited property worth upwards of £3,500 p.a. on the death of his father at the end of 1603.72 Named in the 1604 Essex election indenture, he was not himself elected to the first Jacobean Parliament until 29 Mar., when he was returned for Midhurst after William Twyneho* plumped for Bishop’s Castle. He was probably nominated by his cousin Anthony Browne, 2nd Viscount Montagu, the dominant patron in the borough.73

Weston was named to only 12 committees over the course of the entire 1604-10 Parliament - three in the second session and nine in the fourth - and made no recorded speeches, although he was among those ordered to attend the king in both sessions, first on 14 May 1606 with the Commons’ grievances and then on 24 May 1610 with a petition for free speech. Weston’s parliamentary inactivity may reflect his early concentration on the Court as a means of advancement.74 Clarendon certainly claims that ‘he spent the best part of his fortune ... in his attendance’ at Court. This was probably an exaggeration, but it is clear that he sold some land before obtaining office.75 Weston’s other appointments in the second session were to consider bills to confirm the letters patent granted to St. Bees grammar school in Cumberland (17 Mar. 1606) and ‘against the false making of black soap’ (5 April).76 His legislative committees in the fourth session included bills to prevent the double payment of debts (20 Feb. 1610) and to reform the abuses of purveyance (26 Feb.), as well as private measures for Thomas Mildmay† of Moulsham, Essex (31 Mar.), and Charles Waldegrave of Stanninghall, Norfolk, his second wife’s uncle (14 June).77 On 22 Mar. he was appointed to the committee established in response to the king’s speech the previous day, in which James had called for a bill to preserve game. A week later he was named to consider the hawking bill.78 Weston played no recorded part in the sparsely documented fifth session.

Weston and his friend Sir Anthony Mayney*, a Kentish knight, took a lease of a house in St. Mary, Spital, at an unknown date.79 It may have been Mayney’s friendship that led in 1612 to his appointment as a trustee for the rising Kentish courtier Sir Henry Vane*.80 Some two years later, when the 4th marquess of Winchester’s eldest son married a daughter of Viscount Montagu, both Mayney and Weston acted as trustees for the settlement.81

In 1614 Weston was returned for Essex as knight of the shire. Appointed to eight committees in the Addled Parliament, he also made two recorded speeches. His first appointment, on 8 Apr., required him to help search for precedents for the admission of the attorney-general to the Commons. That same morning he was also named to the committee for privileges and the committee for the bill to repeal or continue expiring statutes. He was subsequently required to attend the conference with the Lords on the Palatine marriage (14 April).82

According to the republican theorist Henry Neville†, writing more than half a century later, Henry Howard, earl of Northampton ‘engaged’ Weston to ‘impeach’ Neville’s grandfather, Sir Henry Neville I* for undertaking to manage the Parliament on behalf of James I.83 There is no contemporary evidence that Weston was acting on Northampton’s behalf, although like the earl he was a crypto-Catholic. Neither was it the case that Sir Henry had entered into any such undertaking, although he had offered to do so in 1611. Nevertheless, on 12 Apr. Weston argued that ‘whosoever [takes] advantage of any interest he got last Parliament [is] unworthy of voice here’. This was almost certainly intended as an attack on Neville, who had succeeded in drawing himself to the king’s attention at a private meeting held at Whitehall in November 1610 between James and 30 of the leading Members of the Commons. However, Weston was careful to separate the allegations against the undertakers from those concerning attempts to pack the Parliament with Crown supporters. 84 The following day he was among those named to draft an address against undertakers.85 When the paper Neville had submitted to James in 1611 was read on 14 May, Weston reproved Neville for allowing ‘so long an eager pursuit of this business’. On the grounds that Parliament ought not to suffer its counsels ‘to be led by any private man’, he moved ‘that it might be recorded that the casting abroad of such-like papers was an ill precedent, though the things in themselves good’.86 He was subsequently appointed to two committees concerned with Bishop Neile’s disparaging speech against the Commons (30 May and 1 June).87

II. Entry into Royal Service

In 1615 Weston joined (Sir) Arthur Ingram* and Henry Spiller* in lending £3,000 to Northampton’s nephew, the lord treasurer, Thomas Howard, 1st earl of Suffolk. Through Ingram he subsequently gained a foothold in the world of high finance, serving under him as collector of petty customs in the port of London.88 However, it was under the aegis of Ingram’s associate, Sir Lionel Cranfield* that Weston at last entered Crown service,89 for in 1617 and 1618 both men served together on commissions to reform the Household and the Navy. Early in 1618 Chamberlain reported that Weston was eager to purchase the chancellorship of the duchy of Lancaster after the death of (Sir) John Dackombe*, but in the event he lost out to (Sir) Humphrey May*.90 His standing at Court was apparently unaffected by the execution of his brother-in-law John Williams for seditious libel in 1619 for writing Balaam’s Ass, a tract predicting the imminent demise of James I.91

The growing international crisis over the election of James I’s son-in-law, the elector Palatine, as king of Bohemia brought Weston into the realms of European diplomacy. In June 1620 he was appointed to replace a reluctant Sir Edward Barrett* as joint ambassador with Sir Edward Conway I* on a roving mission through the Netherlands and Germany to mediate a settlement without compromising English neutrality. One of William Trumbull’s correspondents described him as ‘a strong recusant’ and consequently it is possible that he owed his appointment to the Spanish ambassador Gondomar, who would have wanted a counter-weight to the Protestant Conway. Trumbull was informed that Weston was initially reluctant to accept the commission, ‘finding himself to be much misliked by some, by reason of his religion’, and that James was willing to dispense with his services, but he was subsequently ‘encouraged and brought in again’.92 This encouragement may have come from Cranfield’s patron, the marquess of Buckingham (whose mother was Catholic), as well as from Gondomar. Weston certainly felt it his duty to send Buckingham a report on the progress of the embassy in July 1620, ‘since your lordship hath taken me into a part of your care’.93

The ambassadors reached Prague just in time to witness the Imperialist victory at White Mountain on 29 Oct./8 Nov. and to assist the king and queen to escape. What Trumbull’s correspondent characterized as ‘their long unfruitful journey’ finally came to an end on their return to England on the night of 3 Mar. 1621, too late for the elections to the third Jacobean Parliament which, by then, had already opened.94 Before his return, it was rumoured that Weston would succeed (Sir) Robert Naunton* as secretary of state. Speculation continued to circulate to that effect over the summer, and as late as September, following his appointment to the Privy Council on the 23rd, it was reported that ‘afore it be long we shall see him a secretary’.95 However, in early October Trumbull was told that ‘for the upholding of his new honour of a privy councillor’ it was intended to make Weston chancellor of the Exchequer, although in fact the appointment was not confirmed until the following month.96 It was probably Buckingham, acting on behalf of Cranfield, who had recently been appointed lord treasurer, who secured the position for Weston. Lord keeper Williams subsequently wrote to Buckingham that Weston ‘was brought in by Your Grace’, but that the appointment had been ‘sore against my will’ because he feared the new chancellor was ‘wholly’ Cranfield’s.97 A week later Weston was returned to the Commons for Arundel at the by-election arising from the elevation of Cranfield to the peerage, presumably having been nominated by his friend, Thomas Howard, earl of Arundel.98

III. The Parliaments of 1621 and 1624

Weston received only two committee appointments in what remained of the 1621 Parliament, the first, on 24 Nov., to consider the naturalization of the daughters of Sir Horace Vere, who commanded the English forces in the Palatinate.99 He made six recorded contributions to the debate, establishing his reputation as an important royal spokesman. Clarendon was subsequently to write that Weston ‘carried himself so luckily in Parliament that he did his master much service, and preserved himself in the good opinion and acceptation of the House’.100 Weston’s first documented speech, in the supply debate on 27 Nov., certainly made a favourable impression, one diarist recording that he spoke ‘excellently’ while Pym wrote that he expressed himself with ‘more elegance than I will undertake to describe’. In this speech Weston frankly admitted that James’ pacific foreign policy had failed, stating that ‘the king owes nothing now to the peace of Christendom, he hath discharged his part’, and that it was now for the House ‘to do our part for a war’. Responding to calls for James to declare his enemy he launched a thinly veiled attack on Spanish aggression, stating that ‘I doubt not but in due time we shall find him out that is not contented with his old kingdoms but still labours the acquisition of new’. However, it is unclear what kind of war Weston was advocating. According to the anonymous diarist he argued ‘first to have a war of diversion’, whereas Pym described the speech as, in part, ‘a confutation of those who propounded a war of diversion’. The truth may have been that, as two other diarists record, he argued that, though the kingdom had been ‘often sweetened’ by wars of diversion, ‘we must not seek new conquests till we have defended our possessions,’ by which he meant not only England but the Palatinate. He urged that priority be given to funding the existing forces in Germany, although both Smith’s diary and the Journal suggest that he held out the prospect of a war of diversion ‘hereafter’.101

When the House’s petition to the king was reported on 3 Dec., Weston expressed his approval of the ‘general frame’, but, according to the anonymous diary he attacked the clauses concerning the marriage of Prince Charles and the war, arguing that ‘we ought not speak of that which will not be heard’ and ‘for Parliament to advise the king of war is presumption’. However, other accounts of his speech record him merely asking for ‘good precedents’.102 He undoubtedly recognized that the petition was trespassing on dangerous ground, but the additions had arisen from a motion of a client of Buckingham’s, Sir George Goring, and consequently Weston may have been unsure whether they had official backing. He probably hoped that a search for precedents would allow time for the situation to become clearer.

Weston failed to delay the petition and indeed was named to the committee to deliver it to the king, as well as being ordered to report the answer.103 Gondomar wrote that Weston ‘did not concur with these crazy actions, but as they were passed by the majority, he had to comply with the nomination’.104 The following day Goring was ordered to deliver the petition to Weston, but before it could be submitted to the king the Commons received James’s angry response and the messengers were called back. The House drew up a new petition, justifying its actions, and Weston was again ordered to report the answer. His loyalties may have been questioned, as Nicholas records him protesting on 8 Dec. that he would ‘faithfully deliver the message ... and bring back His Majesty’s answer’.105

Weston reported back to the Commons on 14 Dec., when he revealed that James had received a copy of the original petition from Prince Charles, ‘who complained that his marriage was continually prostituted in the House’. In addition, Weston delivered three messages from James. He informed the Commons that the session would be prorogued at the end of the following week, and urged completion of the bill for the continuance of expiring statutes. In addition he stated that the king had referred the pardon to himself, Cranfield, and the solicitor general (Robert Heath*), to ensure that it contained nothing detrimental to the Crown. Finally, James conceded that if Henry Goldsmith, who was being investigated by the Commons for prosecuting Sir Edward Coke*, had ‘offended the House, he should be punished’.106

Weston made his final speech of the Parliament the following day. He tried to excuse the king’s answer to the petition by stating that James was ‘extremely divided between his zeal to this House and the jealousy of foreign princes’. By this he presumably intended to suggest that, for the sake of his reputation abroad, James had to be seen to be dealing firmly with encroachments on his prerogative. Nevertheless, he thought the Commons had been given ‘for our liberties, a full answer; and, for the rest of our petition, as much satisfaction as His Majesty, with his honour, can (as things stand) give’. He therefore moved that the House should proceed with business. However his attempts to calm the situation proved unsuccessful, and the session was adjourned four days later.107

In the spring of 1622 Weston was again sent to Brussels, taking with him Mayney, described by Joseph Mead as ‘a great papist’, together with ‘more of that stamp’.108 His mission, to secure a cessation of arms and the restoration of the Palatinate, was inevitably a failure. Moreover, although Gondomar had initially approved his appointment, Weston became disillusioned with Spanish diplomacy, writing ‘desperate letters’ home.109 On 16 Aug. he complained to Cranfield that whereas Lord Digby (Sir John Digby*), the ambassador in Madrid, ‘tells you the Palatinate shall be restored ... I see it by piecemeal taken away’, and he fully expected to be called home by James in protest.110 In the event he did not return home until the end of September, when his subsequent account of negotiations gave ‘good satisfaction’ to James and the Privy Council, but brought protests from the Spanish.111

During his absence Weston had been appointed to an inner ring of the Privy Council ‘for the most secret affairs’ concerning foreign policy.112 Despite his experiences in Brussels he remained cautious about the consequences of a breach with Spain.113 At home he supported Cranfield, by now earl of Middlesex, who advocated continued negotiations with Spain, possibly because the latter supported his undiminished, but ultimately unfulfilled, ambition to secure the secretaryship. In addition he also seems to have initially opposed the summoning of the 1624 Parliament.114 Nevertheless, he was returned for the Cornish borough of Bossiney on the nomination of the Prince’s Council, and once in the Commons he consistently supported the anti-Spanish policy pursued by Buckingham (now a duke) and Charles.115

For a privy councillor, Weston kept a low profile in the 1624 Parliament, as he is only recorded as speaking 13 times and received just nine committee appointments.116 However, these bald numbers probably understate his significance in the proceedings of the assembly. When Buckingham gave his narration of the collapse of the Spanish Match to both Houses on 24 Feb., he began with Weston’s 1622 mission to Brussels, which, he stated, was ‘the first discovery of the Spaniards indirect dealing’.117 Weston himself reported this relation of events to the Commons three days later.118 The pivotal role of the 1622 mission in souring relations with Spain was reiterated several times during the 1624 Parliament, possibly because Weston’s reputation as a pro-Spanish crypto-Catholic made him a useful tool for persuading those who did not share the preconceptions of the ‘godly’ of the case for war. It was referred to by one of the Lords’ spokesmen at a conference between both houses on 3 Mar. and Weston, according to the nephew of Dudley Carleton*, ‘won much reputation’ for his own account of his negotiations in the Commons the following day. On the latter occasion he not only detailed the constant delays and unreasonable demands of the Spanish negotiators, but also criticized Digby, who had fallen foul of Buckingham and Charles.119

Weston was appointed on 1 Mar. to prepare for the conference with the Lords about breaking the treaties with Spain.120 Ten days later he and Middlesex made simultaneous reports to the Commons and Lords concerning the king’s finances, and in particular the large sums which had already been spent supporting attempts to protect the Palatinate and the ‘long and deceivable treaties with Spain’, totalling over £600,000. In the Upper House the report raised fears that any taxes voted by Parliament would be consumed in repaying the king’s debts rather than funding a war, and consequently the Lords requested a conference with the Commons. Weston, however, immediately stated that there were ‘no doubts here’.121 On 25 Mar. he was named, together with Sir Edwin Sandys, to help prepare a ‘manifesto’ for the king justifying the breach of the treaties. Objections were raised to his appointment, partly because he was a privy councillor, but also because he was absent from the chamber and it was forbidden to appoint an absent member to a committee; however, it was argued that his diplomatic service meant that ‘things would occur to him whereof other men were ignorant’ and that the rule about absent Members only applied to the commitment of bills, when only those present at the preceding debate could be expected to know the objections raised.122

Weston spoke on the debate on the subsidy on 19 Mar., when he argued that the king was not reluctant to go to war, only ‘wisely desirous to see his means of defence and offence’ before openly committing himself. He admitted that ‘the sound of six subsidies and twelve fifteenths’, which had been demanded, ‘was fearful’, but said that in the short term they need only vote ‘so much as the present necessity requires’ and subsequently ‘proceed but as occasion proceeds’. Moreover, he reminded his colleagues that the taxes would be under their own control, as they would be paid to their own treasurers.123 On 2 Apr. he defended the new imposition on wine, promising that it would expire at the next session of Parliament, and was intended only to fund the exiled Palatinate Court.124

Despite the widening gulf between Weston and Middlesex in policy terms, the former seems to have done his best, without endangering his own position, to support the latter during impeachment proceedings brought by the Commons against the earl. He said on 5 Apr. that he ‘hopes the lord treasurer will acquit himself’ and moved for a copy of the charges to be sent to the earl to enable him to prepare his defence.125 Four days later he moved for a date to be fixed for Middlesex to answer his accusers and produce his own witnesses. The following day Weston was appointed for that purpose, but no one appeared on the lord treasurer’s behalf. Eventually Weston rose to state that Middlesex wished the charges to be transferred directly to the Lords without the Commons proffering an opinion, but his request was rejected. Weston then protested that Middlesex had not had time to prepare his defence, but later the same day said that he had received word that the lord treasurer now wanted a hearing the following Monday.126 This was the last occasion on which Weston spoke on this issue in the Commons, but he was still perceived as being close to Middlesex; on 26 Apr. Sir Edward Conway, by now Secretary of State, wrote to him inquiring on the king’s behalf about how the earl intended to defend himself.127 On 7 May he testified in favour of Middlesex before the Lords, stating that money allegedly received as a bribe was, in fact, the proceeds from the sale of shares in the great farm of the customs, and that the lord treasurer had taken care not to take more than the going rate.128

Weston was initially included in the draft list of recusant office-holders on 27 Apr., ‘for that his wife is a papist’, but on 12 May the House agreed to exclude him, since although she refused to take communion, ‘his wife goeth to church’, and he ‘hath no child or servant recusant’.129

Following Middlesex’s fall, Weston was appointed to administer the treasury temporarily, although Prince Charles opposed the appointment and lord keeper Williams delayed sealing the patent as long as he dared. Nevertheless, the latter wrote to Buckingham on 24 May stating that he knew of ‘no fitter man in England for the office, if he come in as a creature of the prince, and your grace’.130 Weston quickly moved to repair his relations with Charles and Buckingham, and consequently, in August and September there were strong rumours that he would be appointed lord treasurer. However, at the end of the year that post went to Sir James Ley*, an elderly lawyer who had married Buckingham’s niece.131 Nevertheless by the time James died in March 1625 Weston was sufficiently secure in the favour of Charles and Buckingham to retain office.

IV. The 1625 Parliament

Weston was returned for Callington to the first Caroline Parliament, despite having no known connection with the borough or its patrons. He received five committee appointments, all in the Westminster sitting, and spoke at least seven times. On 23 June he was sent to the Lords to request a conference to agree a petition to the king for a general fast. He was subsequently among those named to confer with the Upper House, and reported both the conference proceedings and, the following day, the presentment of the petition to the king.132 He was appointed to consider bills to prevent ‘a new trick found in the Exchequer for debts’ (23 June), secret offices and inquisitions (24 June), and the procuring of judicial places by corrupt practices (29 June). He was also he was among those ordered to attend the king with the address on religion on 8 July, but made no further recorded speeches until after the Parliament reconvened at Oxford.133

Like the other privy councillors with seats in the House, Weston appears to have made no attempt to support (Sir) John Coke* when the latter appealed for additional supply on 8 July, possibly because he was put out that the task had been entrusted to Coke, who was a client of Buckingham’s but not a councillor. Indeed Weston made no recorded mention of supply until after the king himself made a further request on 4 August. The following day he rose, as (Sir) John Eliot* subsequently wrote, to stop ‘the stream and current’ of criticism which had followed the king’s request for additional supply the day before.134 Pym records that he began by making a ‘short recital’ of the points already made by Sir Robert Phelips concerning religion, the French Match, and Buckingham’s domination of the king’s counsels, and ‘applying to every one an answer’. He asserted that Charles would ‘quickly satisfy’ the House concerning religion and claimed that he ‘understood not’ Phelips’ barely coded attack on Buckingham, possibly hoping to flush the duke’s enemies out into the open. In arguing for additional supply he placed the blame for the Crown’s poverty on the late king, James I, and emphasized that ‘long peace and deceivable treaties had brought things out of frame’. He principally seems to have valued parliamentary taxation for its propaganda value, arguing that Charles had learnt in Spain that ‘nothing brought his father into so much contempt as the coldness between him and his people, and that the contrary cause will have the contrary effect’. He also emphasized the impact of Parliament’s actions on their allies abroad, who would ‘grow cold with us’ if England faltered, and claimed that failure to grant supply would serve only to diminish the influence of the Commons, if the king did not ‘see this day the effect of our own counsel, beyond this day we cannot counsel’. He concluded by unsuccessfully moving for a vote of two subsidies and two fifteenths in addition to the two subsidies, which had already granted.135

Five days later Weston delivered a message from the king demanding ‘a present answer about his supply’ and promising a winter session ‘for the commonwealth’. In the subsequent debate he opposed calls for a Remonstrance, claiming that the ‘disorders have not been in His Majesty’s time’, only to be reminded by Sir Guy Palmes that Empson and Dudley had been hanged in Henry VIII’s reign for their failings under Henry VII. His call to put the question for further supply went unheeded.136 Weston repeated the king’s message the following day, but again failed to secure a resolution for supply.137

V. The 1626 Parliament

As lord warden of the Cinque Ports, Buckingham nominated Weston at Hythe in 1626, but the town had already made its choice of Members, and Weston again had to fall back on a Cornish seat. He was probably nominated at Bodmin by Sir Robert Killigrew, the dominant local patron and an adherent of Buckingham.138 The 1626 Parliament marked the peak of Weston’s Commons career, as he made some 40 recorded speeches and received 14 committee appointments.

On 10 Feb., the day after being named to the committee for privileges, Weston delivered a message from the king demanding that a new writ be issued for Norfolk, where Sir Edward Coke had been returned despite having been pricked as sheriff of Buckinghamshire specifically to render him ineligible for election.139 The Commons, unwilling to be deprived of Coke’s services, referred the matter to the privileges committee where, four days later, Weston observed that the precedents produced in Coke’s favour ‘move not me’. He denied that the case ‘touches ... our privileges’ and opined that ‘no men sooner hazard their liberties than those who unseasonably seek them’. He subsequently rebuked Eliot for querying the king’s intervention, stating that ‘why the message was sent or the counsel given [was] not to be questioned, nor who gave the counsel to be here fallen upon. If I should say I gave it, I should not say much amiss’.140 When the proceedings of the committee were reported to the Commons, Weston, according to one newsletter-writer, confessed that he had in fact received no specific message from Charles about the election, only his ‘inclination’, but neither the report nor Weston’s remarkable admission is otherwise recorded.141

Weston was appointed to the committee for religion on 10 Feb., but was unable to prevent himself being named as a recusant officeholder at one of its meetings 17 days later. Nevertheless, as he had been omitted in 1624, it was agreed to refer the matter back to the House. When Pym reported his case on 2 Mar. he stated that Weston was ‘for his own person and the education of his children cleared’, and the Commons agreed unanimously to omit him again.142

Weston’s chief concern in 1626 was undoubtedly to obtain a vote of supply. In order to achieve this he encouraged the Commons, at the committee of the whole House on 24 Feb., to embark on a thoroughgoing review of royal finances, stating that Charles wanted Members to ‘enter into consideration of the king’s estate’ and that he himself was ‘ready to show the king’s charges and issues’ once he had received formal permission. The House granted him leave to give the king an account of the debate, in apparent expectation that he would then obtain permission to make a formal declaration of the Crown’s financial position. However, when on 16 Mar. Richard Spencer reminded him of the expected statement, Weston promptly asked ‘to be spared’, although he assured the Commons that ‘the king has not denied leave’.143

During the intervening time it had become apparent that the Crown’s financial necessities were too urgent to wait for detailed investigation. On 10 Mar. Weston delivered a message from the king stating that the only reason Parliament had been convened was to provide supply. He then claimed that Charles would have accepted their ‘slow and cold proceedings’ if only ‘honour and fame’ was at stake, but it was ‘certainly known’ that the king of Spain was preparing ‘the greatest fleet that ever he had’ and consequently money had to be provided imminently to pay for forces which were on the verge of mutiny, both in England and Ireland. Consequently, there was ‘no place of deliberation left’, for ‘whatsoever is to be done next, this is to be done now’. The king needed to know immediately how much he could expect, ‘that he may accordingly frame his counsels and courses’.144 However, the Commons agreed merely to ask Weston to produce the message in writing for further discussion at a committee of the Whole the following Monday, when a sub-committee was appointed to draft a reply.145

On 20 Mar. Charles again called for a vote of supply, this time in a letter to the Speaker. Weston opposed Sir Thomas Hoby’s proposal to delay consideration of this request for a week, arguing that it was ‘necessary to begin sooner’. The House agreed to debate the letter three days later, when Weston stated that Charles was ‘much comforted with [our] care to examine his estate’. He also declared that he had been commanded by the king to give a ‘particular account’ of the king’s finances, but that this would have to wait until after ‘the great business [was] passed’, namely an immediate grant of supply. However, further deliberations were again deferred.146 When the debate resumed on 27 Mar. Weston acknowledged that the sum demanded - three subsidies and three fifteenths - was ‘a great proportion’, but added that the likely proceeds would be consumed by the fleet alone. Money was also needed to support the Danes and the forces in Holland, and to defend Ireland. Nevertheless, he left it to the judgment of the House ‘whether it be a condition that there is something to proceed before this gift be perfected’. Consequently the House resolved that although it would vote the requested amount, it would only introduce the subsidy bill after it had presented its grievances to the king.147

On 13 Apr. Weston delivered a further message from the king calling on the House to ‘lay aside ... all other diversions’ and proceed with supply. He subsequently rebutted Sir Thomas Grantham’s argument that Charles was trying to constrain their freedom of debate, stating that the king only wanted a speedy decision, and unsuccessfully moved for a date to be fixed for further debate.148 Five days later he tried to ‘revive’ the king’s message, declaring that although ‘fortitude of words are good things ... they neither set forth ships nor raise men and are but an alarum [to their enemies]’. However, attempts to fix a date for further consideration of the message failed.149

Weston delivered a further message from the king on 20 Apr. demanding that unless the Commons resolved ‘within these four or five days’ to vote money ‘proportionable to the weight of his designs, His Majesty must be driven to change his counsels’.150 The Commons thereupon resolved itself into a grand committee, at which Weston, ‘upon mistakes of some speaking’, repeated the new message and explained that it had been sent because of the failure of the House to fix a date for consideration of the old. When consideration of supply was resumed five days later he praised proposals to reform the subsidy ‘if time would permit’, but recited the ‘particular charge’, especially of the Navy and repeated the king’s threat to ‘go to new counsels’.151 On 2 May he transmitted the king’s thanks for the additional subsidy which had been voted six days previously, but urged the necessity of passing the subsidy bill, because until this happened ‘the king can get no credit either at home or abroad’, a point he reiterated the following day.152

Robert Hitcham finally introduced the subsidy bill on 5 May with Weston’s support, the latter demanding ‘to know a sound reason why the bill ... should not now be brought in’. He stated that he had been sent for by the king that morning and, claiming that ‘we know something more, that are near him, than others’, tried to assure the House of Charles’s continued good will and willingness to ‘give them all reasonable content’. Nevertheless, he threatened that if the bill were delayed the king ‘will take it an effect of a neglect to his affairs and person’. He was subsequently appointed to the committee to draft the preamble.153

On 22 May Weston moved to ‘proceed on the king’s revenue’ and for a date to be fixed for reporting the preamble.154 He performed the latter task two days later, although according to Joseph Mead’s correspondent he had to wait two hours to get leave to speak, only for the preamble to be promptly recommitted.155 The committee was ordered to meet that afternoon, but the following day he complained that he had ‘attended yesterday three hours and could get no committee for the preamble of the subsidy’, whereupon further members were added and a further meeting was ordered.156 Weston finally reported the preamble on 3 June, but was again stymied when the order of 27 Mar., against bringing the subsidy bill in before the grievances had been presented to the king, was read.157

On 7 June Weston spoke in favour of the financier Philip Burlamachi, who had presented a petition for reimbursement of the money he had disbursed on behalf of the Council of War. Weston stated that the ‘armies in the Low Countries could not have subsisted’ without Burlamachi’s credit.158 In the debate on the king’s letter to the Speaker of 9 June, repeating the call for supply, Weston unsuccessfully tried to stop moves to refer the issue to a committee of the Whole, arguing that ‘the state of the question is known’ and that consequently the House simply had to resolve ‘whether we will read the [subsidy] bill or no’. In the committee he spoke despairingly that, despite the acknowledged dangers abroad, ‘we have not gone one step forward this Parliament’. He acknowledged that the principal reason for the failure of the Parliament thus far had been the proceedings against Buckingham, but he then asked: ‘have not we done our parts in that, and does not the king promise us redress?’ ‘The king’, he added, ‘has given way to many of our proceedings which he did at first forbid’, which he attributed to his willingness ‘to be ever in league with his people’. Nevertheless he tried to impress upon his hearers that the king’s threats were real, urging the importance of voting taxes, or else ‘I cannot tell that we shall have another day of consultation’. However, he was again unsuccessful.159

Weston consistently tried to defend Buckingham in the 1626 Parliament, but may initially have been unaware that the object of the duke’s enemies was impeachment. When, on 22 Feb., Sir John Eliot reported on the seizure of the St. Peter of Le Havre, a French ship that had allegedly been carrying contraband cargo, Weston’s principal concern was to defend the king’s conduct rather than the lord admiral’s. Stating that he would ‘reveal the secrets of the [Council] table’, he said that Charles had refused to confiscate the ship without legal cause.160 The following day he was added to the committee to consider the case, and on 11 Mar. he successfully argued that ‘weighing all the circumstances’ it was ‘no grievance’.161 When petitions from merchants, complaining that their goods were seized in France in retaliation, were read on 16 Mar., Weston assured his colleagues that ‘what care the ... state can take for the merchants is done’.162

By the time Eliot reported the case again on 1 May, Weston was aware that the former was trying to use the stay of the St. Peter to attack Buckingham. He therefore mounted a comprehensive defence of Buckingham, stating that the lord admiral ‘did not stay this [ship] by himself’, but that, even if he had, it would have been lawful ‘by virtue of his place’. Moreover, he sought to turn the long wrangling over the case to his advantage, arguing that since ‘we have debated this so long and cannot tell how to judge it’, how could Buckingham be blamed if a mistake had been made. He moved that the incident should be ‘once more put by’.163

Weston was quick to respond to potential criticisms of Buckingham. On 25 Feb., Sir Robert Mansell intimated that he had information, ‘not fit to be delivered’ in the Commons, that would demonstrate that the measures announced by Sir John Coke for the defence of the coasts, for which the duke was ultimately responsible, were wholly inadequate. Weston promptly undertook to inform the king of Mansell’s ‘desire’ for a hearing, as he ‘doubts not’ that Charles would appoint suitable members of the Privy Council to receive what Mansell had to relate.164

In the debate on the ‘evils’ of the kingdom on 27 Feb. Weston had to agree that ‘the unprosperous success of our armies and sea’ was ‘an evil’, but asserted that the ‘misspending of the money and want of munition’ had not been proved.165 Speaking on 18 Mar. about the Crown’s loan of English ships to the French, which had been used against the Huguenots the previous year, he denied that the matter was a grievance. After trying to distinguish ‘the counsel of sending them’ from the outcome, he argued that ‘if our friends aboard do deceive us we cannot help it’. Moreover, he warned that ‘it may be thought by this that we have more mind to stir up anger at home than to resist anger from abroad’.166 Six days later, in the debate on guarding the Channel, he made what a general attack on the proceedings against Buckingham, claiming that ‘if I thought him the immediate cause’ of the nation’s evils, he ‘would as willingly as any man’ support the impeachment. However, since there were no ‘particular proofs, it cannot be made the duke’s fault’.167

On 14 Mar. Weston delivered a message from the king complaining about Clement Coke’s speech four days earlier, in which Coke had said that it was better to die by an enemy abroad than to suffer at home, and about the six articles against Buckingham, which Samuel Turner had presented to the Commons the following day.168 He was obliged to repeat the message during the ensuing debate and again the following day, complaining on the latter occasion ‘that it has not been ordinary to call so often upon a message’.169 He subsequently stated that he had been present when Coke had spoken and, although he thought that Coke’s words were not ‘seditiously spoken’, they were ‘to be excepted’ against. He proposed a committee of the Whole, at which he stated he would ‘offer my best advice’, but when the committee was established Weston found himself neutralized by being placed in the chair.170

As this committee dealt only with Coke, Weston was free to respond to Turner on 16 Mar., when the latter cited Weston’s attack on the undertakers in the Addled Parliament as a precedent for making accusations ‘by common fame’. Weston’s response was to distinguish between his own earlier accusations, which he said had been ‘in general’ only, from Turner’s, which he said were ‘in particular’.171 Two days later he accused Turner of raising ‘a calumny and scandal against the most eminent subject in the kingdom’, and moved for consideration of ‘what punishment is to be given him’.172 However, the issue was referred back to a committee of a Whole, at which Weston repeated those parts of the king’s message relating to Turner.173 Six days later, on 28 Mar., Weston delivered a further message from the king summoning the House to Whitehall the following morning. At this meeting Charles and the lord keeper (Sir Thomas Coventry*) criticized the House for failing to discipline Coke and Turner.174 On 1 Apr. Weston successfully moved for a committee of the Whole, but rather than give the king satisfaction this body established a sub-committee to draft a Remonstrance defending the House’s proceedings.175 Weston attended this sub-committee on 3 Apr., when he protested against proposals to include in the Remonstrance a reference to ‘instances of potent ministers that were questioned [in Parliament] heretofore’. When Eliot and Pym proposed making supply conditional on receiving a satisfactory answer to the Remonstrance from the king, Weston seized the opportunity to argue that without a vote of taxation they had little chance getting ‘contentment’. He pressed for an augmentation of what had already been voted, but the sub-committee agreed to omit any mention of supply from the Remonstrance.176

When the Remonstrance was reported to the committee of the Whole the following day Weston moved for the omission of any mention of Buckingham, as this would make it ‘better acceptable to the king’. However, he was not unsuccessful and was appointed to help present the Remonstrance the following day to the king, who promised to respond after the Easter recess.177

The king’s response, relayed in a message delivered by Weston on 13 Apr., was to renew his demand for supply. The lack of any reference to the proceedings against Buckingham, and Weston’s gloss ‘that the king does not restrain us from any matters’, was taken by the House as permission to continue its proceedings against the duke.178 Weston’s remark on 28 Apr., in the debate about the death of James I, ‘that the duke cares not whether any man speaks for him or not’, may imply that by this stage Buckingham and Charles wanted the charges transmitted to the Lords as soon as possible in the hope that the Commons would then turn to supply. That said, Weston defended the duke’s intervention in the late king’s medical care, asserting that things that ‘seem presumption to us ... to kings and their near ones are but liberty’. He also objected to the use of the word ‘presumption’ in the charge, which he claimed ‘does infer a crime’.179

The message that Weston delivered the following day confirmed that the king had permitted the continued proceedings against Buckingham. However, it also showed that Charles was alarmed that ‘new matter [was] intended to be brought in’. The Commons was instructed to finish its inquiries and present the results to either the king or the Lords.180 On 3 May he reiterated that the king expected ‘an end of the inquisition’ and that the House should ‘entertain no new matter’.181 Six days later, in the debate on whether Buckingham should be committed pending his trial, he argued that confinement was only appropriate ‘when there is a certain knowledge of the fact’. He questioned whether the accusations amounted to anything substantive in law, describing the charges as ‘an uncertain crime’ and asserting ‘we cannot believe him guilty yet’.182

In the debate on 12 May following the imprisonment of Eliot and Digges for their speeches at the presentment of the charges against Buckingham, Weston described the motion to send for the keys to prevent Members from leaving as ‘against ... a fundamental law of [the] House’.183 Four days later he delivered a message from the king announcing the release of Digges, claiming that Charles was satisfied that he had not spoken the words of which he was accused. As for Eliot, he said that although Charles disliked ‘the whole manner of his delivery’, that was not the reason for his continued imprisonment, which was for ‘things extrajudicial to this House’ which ‘he hopes you will not take this as a breach of the privilege’. Unsurprisingly, the meaning of the word ‘extrajudicial’ was queried and Weston had to state that he was unable to explain it as ‘it was His Majesty’s word’, but he promised to ask Charles for leave to satisfy the Commons.184 The following day he reported that he had obtained the king’s permission and stated that Eliot was imprisoned for ‘high crimes done to His Majesty out of this House’.185 His pleas for the House to continue with its business fell on deaf ears and three days later he announced that Eliot, having ‘been examined and denied all things ... His Majesty has been satisfied’, and he had been released.186

On 3 June Weston defended Sir Dudley Carleton’s ‘new counsels’ speech of 12 May, in which Carleton had drawn attention to the decline of representative institutions elsewhere in Europe. ‘Shall a counsellor flatter and not tell what has happened in other places to prevent [it happening at home]?’, he demanded. He called on his colleagues ‘not [to] throw blemishes upon those who have served this House faithfully’ as it would ‘discourage others to do the like’.187 Weston’s defence of Carleton doubtless partly arose from the fact that Weston had previously employed the phrase ‘new counsels’ himself, but it was clearly also significant that the two men were friends. For this reason Weston had previously intervened on his behalf. On 18 Apr., for instance, he had enabled Carleton to continue with his report on negotiations with the French after an interruption from Digges, and on 19 May he had defended Carleton when there were demands to know how the king had been informed of Eliot and Digges’ speeches.188

Later on 3 June Weston responded promptly to the speech of John More II, who, in trying to discount the threat of ‘new counsels’, stated that no tyrant could threaten their liberties ‘if the king would keep his kingdom’. Although More had called Charles ‘a just and pious king’, Weston was alarmed at the implication that ‘new counsels’ constituted tyranny, which should be resisted. He immediately interrupted the speech, and subsequently stated that the ‘words [that had] offended him were that there could be no new ways, no new means of fathering money’ without provoking an uprising. He concurred with the House’s decision to send More to the Tower. He was nevertheless ‘very willing ... to clear this gentleman’s intention’ and four days later, when More petitioned for his release, he delivered a message from the king agreeing ‘to remit his further punishment, if this House so please’.189

On 6 June Weston delivered another message from the king objecting to the decision of the House to write to the university of Cambridge criticizing Buckingham’s recent election as chancellor. The issue was referred to a grand committee the following day at which, after repeating the message, Weston seconded Pym’s motion to delay sending the letter until the king had received a reply. He also moved that this reply should be set down in writing, perhaps in the hope that a paper record would make the House more cautious, a motion supported by Digges, who nevertheless moved that Weston should deliver the reply orally. Weston subsequently helped to draft this document, and on 7 June he delivered its contents verbally to the king. In so doing he was obliged to argue that Buckingham was unfit to be chancellor because he had been ‘charged and publicly complained of’ by the Commons and that there had been ‘divers abuses’ in the election. Although Charles then expressly forbade the House from interfering, on the grounds that the election had been sound and that Buckingham should not be ‘lose his fame by an accusation’; the Commons decided to proceed with the letter to Cambridge anyway. Weston thereupon raised objections, and further discussion was deferred.190

In the final days of the Parliament Weston continued to defend Buckingham. When Edward Littleton II reported a draft Remonstrance on 6 June, the chancellor objected to a proposal by Walter Long II to include a complaint that the duke controlled royal patronage, arguing that servants of the Crown would do their duty, ‘were the duke ten dukes’, and after Long excused himself Weston grumbled that the suggestion that ‘best men’ were too afraid of Buckingham to ‘deliver their minds freely’ was ‘a calumny’.191 When the Remonstrance was again debated on 12 June, Weston objected to the clauses blaming the duke for proroguing the 1625 Parliament to Oxford and for its subsequent dissolution, stating that ‘the king’s necessities’ were the cause of the first and that the duke had ‘earnestly and instantly besought the king not to dissolve the Parliament’.192 However, by this date it was clear the 1626 Parliament was not going to grant supply on terms acceptable to the king and it was dissolved three days later.

VI. Final Years

Weston was inevitably, by virtue of his office, a supporter of the Forced Loan, contributing £50 himself on 8 Nov. 1626 and subsequently playing an important role in implementing the levy in the West Country. Nevertheless, his attitude seems to have been moderate. He emphasized the support of the judges for the Loan and made it clear that Parliament was the normal way for the Crown to raise taxation, which he said would shortly be summoned once Charles saw ‘the affection of the people in this Loan’.193

In February 1628 Thomas, 1st Earl Rivers hoped that Weston would be a candidate for Essex in the forthcoming elections to the third Caroline Parliament, but there is no other evidence that he sought re-election to the Commons and he was granted a peerage in April.194 Three months later he was at last made lord treasurer. In the second session of the third Caroline Parliament he succeeded Buckingham, assassinated in August 1628, as the focus of opposition, although his son Jerome, who had been returned for Lewes at a by-election, defended him.195 Nor was his position at Court unchallenged; when Wentworth was brought into the government, in accordance with Weston’s advice, he and Laud contemptuously nicknamed the lord treasurer ‘Lady Delay’ from his cautious finance.196 After a period of declining health, he died on 13 Mar. 1635 of intestinal cancer. Despite his long career in royal finance, George Garrard* wrote he was ‘not ... so rich a man as was conceived in land, which they say is not £6,000 a year, and charged with a debt of £30,000’. It was widely reported that he was received into the Catholic church at his deathbed by (Sir) Tobie Matthew*, but he was buried in Winchester Cathedral and his son told the House of Lords in 1641 that he could proved that Weston had ‘lived and died a Protestant’. He apparently made a will, as Garrard was able to report some of its details to Wentworth, but there is no evidence that it was proved and it does not seem to have survived.197

Ref Volumes: 1604-1629

Authors: Alan Davidson / Ben Coates


  • 1. R.E.C. Waters, Gen. Mems. of Extinct Fam. of Chester of Chicheley, 96-7, 108.
  • 2. Al. Cant.; M. Temple Admiss.; Clarendon, Hist. of the Rebellion ed. W.D. Macray, i. 59.
  • 3. Waters, 97-102, 108; R. Garraway Rice, ‘Warnham: the Regs. and Vicars’, Suss. Arch. Colls. xxxiii. 203; Shaw, Knights of Eng. i. 32; ii. 119; CP, x. 582-5.
  • 4. Cal. Assize Recs. Essex Indictments, Jas. I ed. J.S. Cockburn, 14; C231/4, f. 95; C66/2495; C181/3, f. 15v, 244v, 245, 246, 246v, 263, 264v; 181/4, ff. 57, 68, 131v, 132, 147, 151v, 160v, 176v, 177, 177v, 187v; C193/13/2.
  • 5. SP14/31/1; Eg. 2644, f. 171; C212/22/20-1, 23.
  • 6. C181/2, ff. 32, 50, 94, 193; 181/3, ff. 42v, 76, 214v, 255v, 320v; 181/4, ff. 46, 93, 126, 128v, 136v, 140, 147v, 163, 180, 190v, 191v, 201.
  • 7. E178/3791, unfol.
  • 8. E403/2731, unfol.
  • 9. Maynard Ltcy. Bk. ed. B.W. Quintrell (Essex Hist. Docs. iii), 31, 80, 93, 141, 219, 382; APC, 1627-8, p. 237.
  • 10. C181/2, f. 226; 181/3, f. 68v.
  • 11. CSP Dom. 1611-18, p. 378; E351/627.
  • 12. CD 1621, vii. 425; E351/763.
  • 13. C181/2, ff. 339, 351v, 352v; 181/3, ff. 56v, 243v, 257, 259, 260, 262, 264, 264v; 181/4, ff. 5, 25, 36v, 52, 78, 81, 90, 138v, 175, 188r-v, 193, 194-8.
  • 14. CSP Dom. 1619-23, p. 374.
  • 15. C181/3, ff. 49, 126v.
  • 16. T. Rymer, Foedera, vii. pt. 4, p. 96; C181/3, f. 157.
  • 17. Rymer, viii. pt. 1, p. 70, pt. 3, p. 114.
  • 18. CSP Dom. 1625-6, p. 435, Rymer, viii. pt. 2, pp. 142, 144; C193/12/2, ff. 26, 35, 49v, 57, 63v, 75, 77, 85, 89v.
  • 19. APC, 1627-8, p. 237.
  • 20. C192/1, unfol.
  • 21. Sainty, Lords Lieutenants, 20, 22.
  • 22. Bristol RO, common council procs. f. 25; HMC Exeter, 78; C.F. Patterson, Urban Patronage in Early Modern Eng. 244, 247.
  • 23. CSP Dom. 1631-3, p. 6.
  • 24. Rymer, viii. pt. 3, p. 165, pt. 4, p. 61.
  • 25. Vice Admirals of the Coast comp. J.C. Sainty and A.D. Thrush (L. and I. Soc. cccxxi), 26.
  • 26. CSP Dom. 1631-3, p. 462.
  • 27. Rymer, viii. pt. 4, p. 7.
  • 28. M. Prestwich, Cranfield, 206.
  • 29. HMC 6th Rep. 303; CSP Dom. 1619-23, p. 12; Rymer, viii. pt. 1, p. 9.
  • 30. CD 1621, vii. 412.
  • 31. Rymer, vii. pt. 3, p. 115; CSP Ven. 1623-5, p. 293.
  • 32. HMC Rutland, i. 458.
  • 33. Handlist of British Diplomatic Representatives comp. G.M. Bell, 143, 266-7.
  • 34. Exchequer Officeholders comp. J.C. Sainty (L. and I. Soc. spec. ser. xviii) 39.
  • 35. APC, 1621-3, p. 46; PC2/44, p. 13.
  • 36. Rymer, vii. pt. 3, p. 247, pt. 4, p. 77; viii. pt. 1, p. 32.
  • 37. CSP Dom. 1619-23, p. 515.
  • 38. Rymer, pt. 4, pp. 46, 144, 168.
  • 39. CSP Dom. 1623-5, p. 255.
  • 40. R.G. Usher, Rise and Fall of High Commission, 357, 359.
  • 41. CSP Dom. 1625-6, p. 12.
  • 42. CSP Dom. 1625-6, p. 148.
  • 43. CSP Dom. 1625-6, p. 494.
  • 44. APC, 1626, p. 51.
  • 45. CSP Dom. 1625-6, p. 428.
  • 46. C66/2463.
  • 47. SP16/28, f. 2; C66/2464.
  • 48. APC, 1628-9, p. 33.
  • 49. G.F. James and J.J.S Shaw, ‘Admiralty Admin. and Personnel, 1619-1714’, BIHR, xiv. 13-14.
  • 50. Rymer, viii. pt. 2, p. 281; CSP Dom. 1631-3, p. 547.
  • 51. CSP Dom. 1628-9, p. 205; 1633-4, p. 327.
  • 52. Rymer, viii. pt. 3, p. 73; CSP Dom. 1629-31, p. 174.
  • 53. Rymer, viii. pt. 3, p. 75.
  • 54. Ibid. 136.
  • 55. CSP Dom. 1629-31, p. 158.
  • 56. CSP Dom. 1633-4, p. 60.
  • 57. CSP Dom. 1634-5, p. 527.
  • 58. CSP Dom. 1629-31, p. 474.
  • 59. CSP Dom. 1631-3, p. 81.
  • 60. CSP Dom. 1633-4, p. 286.
  • 61. Ibid. 325.
  • 62. Reg. PC Scot. 1633-5, p. 116.
  • 63. Rymer, viii. pt. 4, p. 76.
  • 64. CSP Col. E.I. 1617-21, p. 99.
  • 65. SP16/221/1.
  • 66. HP Commons, 1558-1603, iii. 605; Oxford DNB sub Weston, Sir Richard (1591-1652).
  • 67. HP Commons, 1508-58, iii. 588-9; M. van C. Alexander, Charles I’s Ld. Treasurer, 2, 33.
  • 68. CSP Ven. 1632-6, p. 367.
  • 69. MTR, 354, 491; Waters, 97.
  • 70. Clarendon, i. 59.
  • 71. HP Commons, 1558-1603, iii. 605-6.
  • 72. Alexander, 34.
  • 73. C219/35/1/102; CP, ix. 100; HP Commons, 1509-58, iii. 588.
  • 74. CJ, i. 309a, 432a.
  • 75. Clarendon, i. 60; Alexander, 35.
  • 76. CJ, i. 294a, 309a.
  • 77. Ibid. 397b, 400a, 417a, 438b.
  • 78. Ibid. 413b, 416a; Procs. 1610 ed. E.R. Foster, ii. 62.
  • 79. LCC Survey of London, xxvii. 50; PROB 11/151, f. 133.
  • 80. C66/1943; E. Hasted, Kent, v. 47-48.
  • 81. PROB 11/124, f. 350.
  • 82. Procs. 1614 (Commons), 33, 36, 82.
  • 83. H. Neville, Plato Redivivus (1681), p. 171.
  • 84. Procs. 1614 (Commons), 64; C. Roberts and O. Duncan ‘Parlty. Undertaking of 1614’, EHR, xciii, 482n1, 492.
  • 85. Procs. 1614 (Commons), 76.
  • 86. Ibid. 239, 245.
  • 87. Ibid. 381, 405.
  • 88. A.F. Upton, Sir Arthur Ingram, 69.
  • 89. Ct. of Jas. I ed. G. Goodman, i. 318.
  • 90. Prestwich, 206, 212; Chamberlain Letters ed. N.E. McClure, ii. 133.
  • 91. Waters, 97.
  • 92. Add. 72253, ff. 124, 126; S.R. Gardiner, Hist. of Eng. from Accession of Jas. I, iii. 362.
  • 93. Harl. 1581, f. 192.
  • 94. Gardiner, iii. 383; Add. 72254, f. 21v.
  • 95. Chamberlain Letters, ii. 339, 392; Add. 72254, f. 55.
  • 96. Add. 72254, f. 57.
  • 97. Cabala sive Scrinia Sacra, i. 276.
  • 98. Alexander, 17.
  • 99. CJ, i. 644a.
  • 100. Clarendon, 60.
  • 101. CD 1621, ii. 445; iii. 464; iv. 444; v. 217, 406; Nicholas, Procs. 1621, iii. 221-2; CJ, i. 648a.
  • 102. CD 1621, ii. 489; v. 229; Nicholas, ii. 270; CJ, i. 655b.
  • 103. CJ, i. 657b.
  • 104. B. Pursell, ‘War or Peace? Jacobean Pols. and the Parl. of 1621’, PPE 1604-48 ed. Kyle, 173.
  • 105. Nicholas, ii. 300.
  • 106. CJ, i. 663a; CD 1621, v. 237-8; Nicholas, ii. 328.
  • 107. Nicholas, ii. 331-2
  • 108. T. Birch, Ct. and Times of Jas. I, 306.
  • 109. Cabala sive Scrinia Sacra, i. 225.
  • 110. Cent. Kent. Stud. U269/1/OE778.
  • 111. Add. 72254, ff. 160, 178v.
  • 112. Add. 72254, f. 118v.
  • 113. Cent. Kent Stud. U269/1/OE778.
  • 114. Chamberlain Letters, ii. 542; Add. 72276, f. 23v; D.H. Willson, ‘Summoning and Dissolving Parl. 1603-25’, AHR, xlv. 299.
  • 115. DCO, ‘Prince Chas. in Spain’, f. 33r-v.
  • 116. The speech attributed to the chan. of the Exch. (CJ, i. 674b) on Sir John Jephson’s proposal for a guard on 26 Feb., seems to have been made by the chan. of the duchy of Lancaster, Sir Humphrey May, with whom Weston is frequently confused. See for instance CJ, i. 719a; Holles 1624, p. 5.
  • 117. Holles 1624, p. 3.
  • 118. CJ, i. 720a-b.
  • 119. ‘Pym 1624’, i. f. 16v; Ferrar 1624, pp. 50, 54-5; Holles 1624, p. 21.
  • 120. CJ, i. 724a.
  • 121. Holles 1624, p. 29; CJ, i. 683a; ‘Nicholas 1624’, ff. 66-7; R.E. Ruigh, Parl. of 1624, pp. 202-3.
  • 122. ‘Pym 1624’, i. f. 43v.
  • 123. CJ, i. 741a; ‘Spring 1624’, p. 127; ‘Lowther 1624’, ff. 35v-6.
  • 124. ‘Holland 1624’, i. f. 76v.
  • 125. ‘Spring 1624’, p. 173.
  • 126. Holles 1624, p. 72; ‘Nicholas 1624’, ff. 139-40.
  • 127. CSP Dom. 1623-5, p. 225;
  • 128. LJ, iii. 359-60.
  • 129. ‘Nicholas 1624’ f. 179v; CJ, i. 703a.
  • 130. Cabala sive Scrinia Sacra, 276-7.
  • 131. CSP Dom. 1623-5, pp. 274, 335; Chamberlain Letters, ii. 577.
  • 132. Procs. 1625, pp. 228-9, 238-9.
  • 133. Ibid. 229, 238, 269.
  • 134. Ibid. 543.
  • 135. Ibid. 397-8.
  • 136. Ibid. 450-1, 561.
  • 137. Ibid. 463.
  • 138. Procs. 1626, iv. 241.
  • 139. Ibid. ii. 7, 12.
  • 140. Ibid. 37, 41.
  • 141. C115/108/8576.
  • 142. Procs. 1626, ii. 13, 138, 176-7.
  • 143. Ibid. 117, 300.
  • 144. Ibid, 248-9, 252.
  • 145. Ibid. 247, 272, 275.
  • 146. Ibid. 321, 348.
  • 147. Ibid. 375, 379.
  • 148. Ibid. 436-7.
  • 149. Ibid. iii. 18, 21-2.
  • 150. Ibid. 36.
  • 151. Ibid. 32, 33, 63, 66.
  • 152. Ibid. 124, 147.
  • 153. Ibid. 168, 173.
  • 154. Ibid. 308.
  • 155. Ibid. 320; T. Birch, Ct. and Times of Chas. I, i. 105.
  • 156. Procs. 1626, iii. 322, 334.
  • 157. Ibid. 354.
  • 158. Ibid. 388.
  • 159. Ibid. 424, 427, 428.
  • 160. Ibid. ii. 96-7.
  • 161. Ibid. 103, 261.
  • 162. Ibid. 298.
  • 163. Ibid. iii. 114.
  • 164. Ibid. ii. 127, 131.
  • 165. Ibid. 138.
  • 166. Ibid. 314.
  • 167. Ibid. 361.
  • 168. Ibid. 285.
  • 169. Ibid. 282, 289.
  • 170. Ibid. 290, 292.
  • 171. Ibid. 299.
  • 172. Ibid. 315.
  • 173. Ibid. 342.
  • 174. Ibid. 286.
  • 175. Ibid. 418.
  • 176. Ibid. 424-5.
  • 177. Ibid. 431.
  • 178. Ibid. 437.
  • 179. Ibid. iii. 90, 92.
  • 180. Ibid. 98, 102.
  • 181. Ibid. 148.
  • 182. Ibid. 210, 214.
  • 183. Ibid. 248.
  • 184. Ibid. 265, 267.
  • 185. Ibid. 273.
  • 186. Ibid. 292.
  • 187. Ibid. 357, 363-4; Alexander, 25-6.
  • 188. Procs. 1626, iii. 17, 182, 185, 283, 285.
  • 189. Ibid. 353, 357, 383.
  • 190. Ibid. 377-8, 385-9.
  • 191. Ibid. 378-9.
  • 192. Ibid. 424.
  • 193. E401/1386, m. 23; R. Cust, Forced Loan, 44, 68-9, 123.
  • 194. Procs. 1628, vi. 146.
  • 195. CD 1629, pp. 241-2.
  • 196. Strafforde Letters (1739) ed. W. Knowler, i. 34-5; Works of Abp. Laud ed. J. Bliss, vii. 129.
  • 197. Strafforde Letters, i. 177, 243, 374, 387-90; HMC 12th Rep. IX, 127; LJ, v. 446.