Sir Richard Rich, Lord Chancellor of England

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Richard Rich, 1st Baron Rich of Leez

Also Known As: "Lord Rich of Leighs"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: St Lawrence Jewry, London, Middlesex, England, (Present UK)
Death: Died in Rochford, Essex, England
Place of Burial: Felsted, Essex, England, United Kingdom
Immediate Family:

Son of Richard Rich, of Hampshire and Joan Rich
Husband of Elizabeth Rich
Partner of Mistress
Father of Alice White; Hugh Rich; Elizabeth Peyton; Anne Pigott; Winifred North (Rich) and 13 others
Brother of Hugh Rich; Mary Wroth and Thomas Rich

Occupation: British statesman
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Sir Richard Rich, Lord Chancellor of England

Richard Rich, 1st Baron Rich

Richard Rich, 1st Baron Rich (1496/7 – 12 June 1567), was Lord Chancellor during the reign of King Edward VI of England from 1547 until January 1552. The founder of Felsted School with its associated alms houses in Essex in 1564, he was also a persecutor and torturer of Protestants.

  • According to Sergeaunt:[1]

The origin of the family of Lord Rich has been matter of some discussion...The first of the family of whom there is definite information was Richard Rich, a wealthy mercer of London and Sheriff of the City in 1441. The date of his death is given by Burke as 1469, but it would seem that he has been confounded with his son John, who was buried in the Mercer’s chapel in that year. The family remained in the city, and the son of John Rich was probably also a mercer. To him was born sometime between 1480 and 1490 a son whom he named Richard.

According to some sources, Rich was born in the London parish of St Lawrence Jewry, the second son of Richard Rich by Joan Dingley;[2][3] according to Carter, he was born at Basingstoke, Hampshire, the son of John Rich (d. 1509?), of Penton Mewsey, Hampshire, and a wife named Agnes whose surname is unknown.[4] Early in 1551 he was described in an official document as 'fifty-four years of age and more', and was therefore born about 1496.[2] He had a brother, Robert, who was granted a messuage in Bucklersbury by Henry VIII on 24 February 1539,[5] and who died in 1557.[2]

Little is known of his early life. He may have studied at Cambridge before 1516.[2] In 1516 he entered the Middle Temple as a lawyer and at some point between 1520 and 1525 he was a reader at the New Inn. By 1528 we know that Rich was in search of a patron and wrote to Cardinal Wolsey; in 1529, Thomas Audley succeeded in helping him get elected as an MP for Colchester.[6] As Audley's career advanced in the early 1530s so did Rich's through a variety of legal posts, before he became truly prominent in the mid-1530s.[2]

Other preferments followed, and in 1533 he was knighted and became Solicitor General, in which capacity he was to act under Thomas Cromwell as a "lesser hammer" for the demolition of the monasteries, and to secure the operation of Henry VIII's Act of Supremacy. He had a share in the trials of Thomas More and Bishop John Fisher. In both cases his evidence against the prisoner included admissions made in friendly conversation, and in More's case the words were given a misconstruction that could hardly be other than wilful.[7] While on trial, More said that Rich was "always reputed light of his tongue, a great dicer and gamester, and not of any commendable fame."[8] Rich would also play a major part in the fall of Cromwell.

As King's Solicitor, Rich travelled to Kimbolton Castle in January 1536 to take the inventory of the goods of Catherine of Aragon, and wrote to Henry advising how he might properly obtain her possessions.[9]

On the 19 April 1536 Rich became the chancellor of the Court of Augmentations established for the disposal of the monastic revenues. His own share of the spoil, acquired either by grant or purchase, included Leez (Leighs) Priory and about a hundred manors in Essex. Rich also acquired—and destroyed—the real estate and holdings of the Priory of St Bartholomew-the-Great in Smithfield. He built the Tudor-style gatehouse still surviving in London as the upper portion of the Smithfield Gate.[10] He was Speaker of the House of Commons in the same year, and advocated the king's policy. In spite of the share he had taken in the suppression of the monasteries, the prosecution of Thomas More and Bishop Fisher and of the part he was to play under Edward VI and Elizabeth, his religious beliefs remained nominally Roman Catholic.

Rich was also a participant in the torture of Anne Askew, the only woman to be tortured at the Tower of London. Both he and Chancellor Wriothesley turned the wheels of the rack to torture her with their own hands.[11]

Rich was an assistant executor of the will of King Henry VIII, and received a grant of lands.[12] He became Baron Rich of Leez on 26 February 1547. In the next month he succeeded Wriothesley as chancellor. He supported Protector Somerset in his reforms in church matters, in the prosecution of his brother Thomas Seymour, and in the rest of his policy until the crisis of October 1549, when he deserted to Warwick. He presided over Somerset's trial on 1 December 1551, and resigned his office in January 1552.

Rich took part in the prosecution of bishops Stephen Gardiner and Edmund Bonner, and had a role in the harsh treatment accorded to the future Mary I of England. However, Mary on her accession showed no ill-will to Rich. Lord Rich took an active part in the restoration of the old religion in Essex under the new reign, and was one of the most active of persecutors. His reappearances in the privy council were rare during Mary's reign; but under Elizabeth he served on a commission to inquire into the grants of land made under Mary, and in 1566 was sent for to advise on the question of the queen's marriage. He died at Rochford in Essex, on 12 June 1567, and was buried in Felsted church.

In Mary's reign he had founded a chaplaincy with provision for the singing of masses and dirges, and the ringing of bells in Felsted church. To this was added a Lenten allowance of herrings to the inhabitants of three parishes. These donations were transferred in 1564 to the foundation of Felsted School for instruction, primarily for children born on the founder's manors, in Latin, Greek and divinity. The patronage of the school remained in the family of the founder until 1851.

Rich's descendants were to form the powerful Rich family, lasting for three centuries, acquiring several titles in the Peerage of England and intermarrying with numerous other noble families.

By his wife Elizabeth Jenks, or Gynkes, he had fifteen children. The eldest son Robert (1537?–1581), second Baron Rich, supported the Reformation. One grandson, Richard Rich, was the first husband of Catherine Knyvet and another grandson Robert, third lord, was created Earl of Warwick in 1618. Rich had an illegitimate son, also named Richard (d. 1598[13]), who was provided for in his will on the condition that he was to be brought up in the study of the common law.[14] Richard's grandson via this illegitimate son was the merchant adventurer Sir Nathaniel Rich, and his great-grandson was Nathaniel Rich (nephew of the older Nathaniel), a colonel in the New Model Army during the English Civil War.

Since the mid-sixteenth century Rich has had a highly negative reputation for immorality, financial dishonesty, double dealing, perjury and treachery that is seldom matched in all of English history.[4] The historian Hugh Trevor-Roper dismissed Rich as a man "of whom nobody has ever spoken a good word".[15]

Rich is the supporting villain in the play by Robert Bolt and the Oscar-winning film A Man for All Seasons. In the 1966 film he was played by John Hurt.

Rich is a supporting character in the Shardlake crime novels by C. J. Sansom, which are also set in the reign of Henry VIII. Rich is portrayed as a cruel villain who is prepared to subvert justice in order to enhance his property and position. He has a significant role in the plot of Sovereign, the third of the series and in Heartstone, the fifth.

He is also represented on seasons two, three and four of the Showtime series The Tudors by actor Rod Hallett.

Rich (spelled Riche in the novel) is a supporting character in Hilary Mantel's Booker Prize-winning Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies. In the BBC television adaptation of the two novels, Wolf Hall, Rich is portrayed by Bryan Dick.

From:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Rich,_1st_Baron_Rich

_____________________

  • Sir Richard Rich, 1st Lord Rich, Lord Chancellor of England, Speaker of the House of Commons1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9
  • M, #32983, b. 1496, d. 12 June 1567
  • Father Richard Rich, Sheriff
  • Mother Joan Dingley
  • Sir Richard Rich, 1st Lord Rich, Lord Chancellor of England, Speaker of the House of Commons married (mistress) DID NOT MARRY. Sir Richard Rich, 1st Lord Rich, Lord Chancellor of England, Speaker of the House of Commons married Elizabeth Jenkes, daughter of William Jenkes (Gynkes).4,5,8,9 Sir Richard Rich, 1st Lord Rich, Lord Chancellor of England, Speaker of the House of Commons was born in 1496. He died on 12 June 1567.
  • Family 1 Elizabeth Jenkes d. 1558
  • Children
    • Winifred Rich+10 b. c 1520, d. a Nov 1578
    • Mary Rich+11,3,5,7,9 b. c 1522, d. a 5 Oct 1573
    • Elizabeth Rich12,4,8 b. c 1527, d. 17 Oct 1591
    • Audrey (Etheldreda) Rich+13,2,6 b. c 1530
    • Robert Rich, 2nd Lord Rich+ b. 1538, d. 27 Feb 1581
    • Frances Rich+14 b. c 1539, d. b 21 Feb 1640
  • Family 2 (mistress)
  • Child
    • Alice Rich+ b. c 1541, d. 1593
  • Citations
  • [S10182] Unknown author, Wallop Family, p. 659.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. II, p. 94.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. III, p. 51-52.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. III, p. 355-356.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. IV, p. 373.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. II, p. 473-474.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. III, p. 632.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. IV, p. 369.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. V, p. 400-401.
  • [S11568] The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain, and the United Kingdom, by George Edward Cokayne, Vol. IX, p. 653.
  • [S5] Douglas Richardson, Plantagenet Ancestry, p. 465.
  • [S15] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, p. 660.
  • [S10974] Unknown author, History of the Family of Drury, p. 100, 101., p. 100-101.
  • [S11568] The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain, and the United Kingdom, by George Edward Cokayne, Vol. IV, p. 78.
  • From: http://our-royal-titled-noble-and-commoner-ancestors.com/p1098.htm#i32983

_____________

  • Richard RICH (1° B. Rich of Leez)
  • Born: BET 1490/1508, St Lawrence Jewry, London, Middlesex, England
  • Acceded: 26 Feb 1548
  • Died: 12 Jun 1567, Rochford, Essex, England
  • Buried: 8 Jul 1567, Felsted Church, Essex, England
  • Notes: See his Biography.
  • Father: Richard RICH
  • Mother: Joan DINGLEY
  • Married 1: Elizabeth JENKINS (b. 1510- d. 16 Dec 1558) (dau. of William Gynkes and Elizabeth Adams) BEF May 1536
  • Children:
    • 1. Mary RICH
    • 2. Hugh RICH
    • 3. Elizabeth RICH
    • 4. Audrey (Etheldreda) RICH
    • 5. Dorothy RICH
    • 6. Winifred RICH (B. North)
    • 7. Robert RICH (2° B. Rich of Leez)
    • 8. Frances RICH (B. Darcy of Chiche)
    • 9. Dau. RICH
    • 10. Nicholas RICH (b. 1550 - d. 1600)
    • 11. Dau. RICH
    • 12. Agnes RICH
    • 13. Edward RICH
    • 14. Richard RICH
  • Married 2: Elizabeth COLWELL
  • Associated with: ¿?
  • Children:
    • 15. Richard RICH
  • From: http://www.tudorplace.com.ar/RICH.htm#Richard RICH (1° B. Rich of Leez)
  • The details in this biography come from the History of Parliament, a biographical dictionary of Members of the House of Commons.
  • http://www.tudorplace.com.ar/Bios/RichardRich(1BLeez).htm

_________________

  • Richard Rich, 1st Baron Rich1
  • M, #176428, b. circa 1496, d. 12 June 1567
  • Last Edited=11 Nov 2013
  • Richard Rich, 1st Baron Rich was born circa 1496.1 He married Elizabeth Jenks, daughter of William Jenks and Elizabeth Adams.3 He died on 12 June 1567 at Rochford.1
  • He gained the title of 1st Baron Rich.
  • Child of Richard Rich, 1st Baron Rich
    • unknown daughter Rich+4
  • Children of Richard Rich, 1st Baron Rich and Elizabeth Jenks
    • Winifred Rich+3
    • Elizabeth Rich+3
    • Frances Rich+5 d. b 1580
    • Hugh Rich2 d. 1554
    • Edward Rich2
    • Richard Rich2
    • Margery Rich3
    • Agnes Rich3
    • Mary Rich3
    • Dorothy Rich3
    • Ethelreda Rich3
    • Anne Rich3
    • Robert Rich, 2nd Baron Rich+1 b. c 1537, d. 27 Feb 1580/81
    • Nicholas Rich2 b. 1550, d. 1600
  • Citations
  • [S6] G.E. Cokayne; with Vicary Gibbs, H.A. Doubleday, Geoffrey H. White, Duncan Warrand and Lord Howard de Walden, editors, The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, Extant, Extinct or Dormant, new ed., 13 volumes in 14 (1910-1959; reprint in 6 volumes, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 2000), volume X, page 774. Hereinafter cited as The Complete Peerage.
  • [S3409] Caroline Maubois, "re: Penancoet Family," e-mail message to Darryl Roger Lundy, 2 December 2008. Hereinafter cited as "re: Penancoet Family."
  • [S22] Sir Bernard Burke, C.B. LL.D., A Genealogical History of the Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited, and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire, new edition (1883; reprint, Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1978), page 452. Hereinafter cited as Burkes Extinct Peerage.
  • [S37] BP2003 See link for full details for this source. Hereinafter cited as. [S37]
  • [S6] Cokayne, and others, The Complete Peerage, volume IV, page 78.
  • From: http://thepeerage.com/p17643.htm#i176428

____________________

  • Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 48
  • Rich, Richard (1496?-1567) by Albert Frederick Pollard
  • RICH, RICHARD, first Baron Rich (1496?–1567), lord chancellor, second son of Richard Rich and Joan Dingley, his wife, was probably born in 1496, since early in 1551 he is officially described as fifty-four years of age and more. The family was of Hampshire origin, and the chancellor's great-grandfather, Richard Rich (d. 1469), a prominent member of the Mercers' Company, served as sheriff of the city of London in 1441. He left two sons, John (d. 1458), from whom are descended the baronets of the Rich family, and Thomas, grandfather of the lord chancellor. The visitation of Essex in 1612 represents the chancellor as second son of John Rich, who died on 19 July 1458, which is impossible. Robert, a brother of the chancellor, died in 1557. Rich was born in the parish of St. Laurence Jewry, in the church of which several of his family were buried. Cooper (Athenæ Cantabr. i. 253) states that he was at one time a member of Cambridge University (cf. Ascham, Epist. 1703, pp. 322–3), and in 1539 he was an unsuccessful candidate for the chancellorship of that university against the Duke of Norfolk. He was bred to the law, entered the Middle Temple, and formed an acquaintance with Sir Thomas More, a native of the same parish and member of the same inn. ‘You know,’ said More to Rich at his trial, ‘that I have been acquainted with your manner of life and conversation a long space, even from your youth to this time; for we dwelt long together in one parish, where, as yourself can well tell (I am sorry you compel me to speak it), you were always esteemed very light of your tongue, a great dicer and gamester, and not of any commendable fame either there or at your house in the Temple, where hath been your bringing up’ (Cresacre, Life of Sir T. More, ed. Hunter, p. 263).
  • Rich, however, in spite of his dissipation, acquired an intimate knowledge of the law. In 1526 he was an unsuccessful candidate for the office of common serjeant against William Walsingham, the father of Sir Francis. In 1528 he wrote to Wolsey urging a reform of the common law, and offering to describe the abuses in daily use, and to suggest remedies. In the following December he was placed on the commission for the peace in Hertfordshire, and in February 1529 was made a commissioner of sewers. In the autumn he became reader at the Middle Temple, and in November was returned as one of the burgesses of Colchester to the ‘reformation’ parliament which sat from 1529 to 1536. In June 1530 he was placed on the commission for gaol delivery at Colchester Castle, and in July was one of those appointed to make a return of Wolsey's possessions in Essex. In March 1532 he was granted the clerkship of recognisances of debt taken in London, and on 13 May was appointed attorney-general for Wales and the counties palatine of Flint and Chester. On 10 Oct. 1533 he was made solicitor-general, and knighted. In this capacity he took the leading part in the crown prosecutions for non-compliance with the acts of succession and supremacy. In April 1535 he assisted at the examination of the three Carthusian monks who were executed shortly after at Tyburn. Baily's story (Life of Fisher, p. 214) that Rich was sent to Fisher with a secret message from Henry to the effect that he would not accept the supremacy of the church if Fisher disapproved is improbable; but in May Rich came to the Tower and endeavoured to ascertain the bishop's real views on the subject, assuring him on the king's word that no advantage would be taken of his admissions, and promising that he would repeat them to no one but the king. Nevertheless this conversation was made the principal evidence on which Fisher was condemned, and at his trial he denounced Rich for his treachery in revealing it. Similarly base was Rich's conduct towards Sir Thomas More. On 12 June he had an interview with More in the Tower, in which, according to his own account, he ‘charitably moved’ the ex-chancellor to comply with the acts. But at the trial he gave evidence that More had denied the power of parliament to make the king supreme head of the church; the words rested solely on Rich's testimony, and More charged Rich with perjury. ‘In good faith, Mr. Rich,’ he said, ‘I am more sorry for your perjury than mine own peril; and know you that neither I nor any one else to my knowledge ever took you to be a man of such credit as either I or any other could vouchsafe to communicate with you in any matter of importance.’ Rich attempted to substantiate the accusation by calling Sir Richard Southwell [q. v.] and Palmer, who had attended him in the Tower; but they both professed to have been too busy removing More's books to listen to the conversation. More was condemned, and Rich reaped his reward by being appointed before the end of the year overseer of liveries of lands, and chirographer of common pleas.
  • Meanwhile the lesser monasteries had been dissolved, and to deal with their revenues there was formed the court of augmentations of the revenue of the crown. This court was a committee of the privy council, and Rich, who was probably at the same time sworn of the council, was made its first chancellor on 19 April 1536. He was returned probably as knight of the shire for Essex to the parliament which met on 8 June and was dissolved on 18 July 1536, and was elected speaker. In his opening speech he compared the king with Solomon for justice and prudence, with Samson for strength and fortitude, and with Absalom for beauty and comeliness, and in his oration at the close of the session he likened Henry to the sun which expels all noxious vapours and brings forth the seeds, plants, and fruits necessary for the support of human life. He was now perhaps, next to Cromwell, the most powerful and the most obnoxious of the king's ministers. When in the same year the northern rebellion broke out, the insurgents coupled his name with Cromwell's in their popular songs, and in the list of articles they drew up demanded his dismissal and punishment, describing him as a man of low birth and small reputation, a subverter of the good laws of the realm, a maintainer and inventor of heretics, and one who imposed taxes for his own advantage. The failure of the rebellion was followed by the suppression of the remaining religious houses, and Rich devoted himself zealously to the work, being described as the hammer, as Cromwell was the mall, of the monasteries. Occasionally he visited a monastery himself, but his chief occupation was the administration of their revenues, and it was natural that some of the enormous wealth which passed through his hands should stick to his fingers. In 1539 he was appointed, as groom of the privy chamber, to meet Anne of Cleves at Calais; but he deserted Cromwell in the disgrace which consequently overtook him, and was one of the chief witnesses against his friend and benefactor.
  • Cromwell's fall was followed by a reaction against the Reformation, and Rich took an active part in the persecution of the reformers, working with Gardiner, and being described by Foxe as one of the papists in Henry's council. He was constant in his attendance at the privy council, and in April 1541 one John Hillary was committed to the Marshalsea for accusing Rich of deceiving the king as to the possessions of the abbey of Keynsham. In 1544 he resigned the chancellorship of the court of augmentations, and in the same year was treasurer of the wars against France and Scotland, accompanying Henry to Boulogne, and assisting in the negotiation of a treaty with France. On 30 Dec. he was again returned to parliament as knight of the shire for Essex. In June 1546 he took part in the examination of Anne Askew [q. v.], and was present when she was tortured in the Tower; according to her own explicit statement, Wriothesley and Rich ‘took pains to rack me with their own hands till I was well nigh dead’ (Foxe, v. 547). The story has been much discussed but never disproved, and ‘is perhaps the darkest page in the history of any English statesman’ (Froude, iv. 208).
  • In spite of these proceedings, Rich's position was improved by the accession of Edward VI. Henry had appointed him an assistant executor of his will, bequeathed him 200l., and, according to Paget, left instructions that he should be made a peer. On 26 Feb. 1547–8 he was created Baron Rich of Leeze (Leighs), Essex. In March Wriothesley was deprived of the lord-chancellorship, owing, it is said, to Rich's intrigues, and on 23 Oct. Rich was appointed lord chancellor. He acquiesced in the violent religious changes made by Somerset, signing the orders in council for the administration of the communion in both kinds and for the abolition of private masses. In 1549 he took part in the proceedings against the Protector's brother, Lord Seymour of Sudeley; having obtained an opinion from the judges and council, he conducted the bill of attainder through parliament, and afterwards signed the warrant for his execution. On the outbreak of the rebellion in the same year he summoned the justices before him, and rated them for their neglect to preserve the peace in an harangue printed in Foxe (v. 72–5). In October he accompanied Somerset to Hampton Court when the young king was removed thither; but, finding the Protector's party was deserting him, he took the great seal and joined Warwick at Ely House, Holborn. There, on 6 Oct., he described before the lord mayor the abuses of which Somerset was accused; he made a similar harangue at the Guildhall on the 8th, and on the 12th rode to Windsor bearing the news of the council's proceedings against Somerset to the king. He presided at Somerset's examination before the council, drew up the articles against him, obtained his confession, and brought in the bill of pains and penalties, by which the Protector was deprived of all his offices.
  • Rich may have thought that Warwick would reverse the religious policy of his predecessor, or perhaps the marriage of his daughter Winifred with Warwick's son, Sir Henry Dudley, induced him to side against Somerset; but Warwick's triumph failed to improve his position. Probably against his will, he took part in the proceedings against Bonner and Gardiner. The eighth session of the court appointed to try the latter was held at Rich's house in St. Bartholomew's on 20 Jan. 1551, though at another stage of the proceedings Rich appeared as a witness in the bishop's favour. Similarly he was burdened with the chief part in the measures taken by the council against the Princess Mary. In 1550 he was sent to request her to move to Oking or come to court; she refused, but professed herself willing to accept Rich's hospitality at Leighs Priory. The visit was prevented by a dangerous sickness which broke out in the chancellor's household, and necessitated his absence from the council from June to November. More to Rich's taste were the measures he took against Joan Bocher [q. v.] and the sectaries of Bocking (cf. Dixon, Hist. Church of England, iii. 212). In August 1551 he was again sent to Mary at Copped Hall to forbid mass in her household [see Rochester, Sir Robert]. On 26 Oct. a commission was appointed to transact chancery business because of Rich's illness, and on 21 Dec. he resigned the great seal. Fuller, in his ‘Church History,’ relates a story communicated to him by Rich's great-grandson, the Earl of Warwick, to the effect that Rich had written a letter to Somerset, who he thought might yet return to power, warning him against some design of Northumberland. In his haste he addressed it merely ‘to the duke,’ and his servant handed it to the Duke of Norfolk, who revealed its contents to Northumberland. Rich, hearing of the mistake, only saved himself by going at once to the king and resigning the great seal. It is improbable, however, that Norfolk, who made Rich one of his executors, would have betrayed him; at any rate, Rich did not resign the great seal to the king, but to Winchester, Northumberland, and D'Arcy, who were sent to his house for the purpose, and there can be no doubt of the genuineness of his illness. The great seal was entrusted for the time to Goodrich, bishop of Ely; but Rich's ill-health continuing, the bishop was definitely appointed lord chancellor on 19 Jan. 1551–2.
  • Rich now retired to Essex, where he was placed on a commission for the lord-lieutenancy in May; but he was still identified with the government of Northumberland, whom he appointed his proxy in the House of Lords. In November he recommenced his attendances at the privy council, and continued them through the early part of 1553. He was one of the commissioners who decided against Bonner's appeal early in that year, and on 9 July he signed the council's answer to Mary's remonstrance, pronouncing her a bastard and proclaiming Lady Jane Grey. But immediately afterwards he went down into Essex, and, paying no attention to a letter from the council on 19 July requiring him to remain faithful to Jane, declared for Mary. On the 21st a letter from the council ordered him to retire with his company to Ipswich ‘until the queen's pleasure be further known;’ and on 3 Aug. he entertained Mary at Wanstead on her way to London. His wife attended Mary on her entry into the city, and Rich was at once sworn of her council, and officiated at the coronation.
  • During Mary's reign Rich took little part in the government, and his attendances at the council were rare. He was one of the peers summoned to try Northumberland, and he was the only peer who voted against Gardiner's bill for the restoration of the see of Durham. But he vigorously abetted the restoration of the old religion in Essex; at Felsted he at once established masses for the dead, and he was a zealous persecutor of the heretics, examining them himself or sending them up to London, and being present at numerous executions. The excessive number of martyrs in Essex is attributed by Foxe to Rich's persecuting activity. In 1557 he was raising forces for the war in France and defence of the Essex sea-coast, and in the following February attended Lord Clinton on his expedition against Brest. In November 1558 he was appointed to accompany Elizabeth to London, and in December was placed on a commission to inquire into lands granted during the late reign. He dissented from the act of uniformity, and in 1566 was summoned to discuss the question of the queen's marriage. He died at Rochford, Essex, on 12 June 1567, and was buried in Felsted church, where a recumbent effigy represents him with a small head and keen features; the inscriptions have been obliterated. His will, dated 12 May, with a codicil dated 10 June 1567, was proved on 3 June 1568. His portrait, by Holbein, is preserved among the Holbein drawings in the Royal Library at Windsor; it has been engraved by Bartolozzi and R. Dalton.
  • Rich has been held up to universal execration by posterity; catholics have denounced him as the betrayer of More and Fisher, and protestants as the burner of martyrs. A time-server of the least admirable type, he was always found on the winning side, and he had a hand in the ruin of most of the prominent men of his time, not a few of whom had been his friends and benefactors—Wolsey, More, Fisher, Cromwell, Wriothesley, Lord Seymour of Sudeley, Somerset, and Northumberland. His readiness to serve the basest ends of tyranny and power justifies his description as ‘one of the most ominous names in the history of the age’ (Dixon). But his ability as a lawyer and man of business is beyond question. His religious predilections inclined to catholicism; but he did not allow them to stand in the way of his advancement. Few were more rapacious or had better opportunities for profiting by the dissolution of the monasteries; the manors he secured in Essex alone covered a considerable portion of the county. It should, however, be acknowledged that he used some of his ill-gotten wealth for a noble object, and that he was a patron of learning (Ascham, Epist. 1703, p. 322). In 1554 he founded a chaplaincy at Felsted, and made provision for the singing of masses and dirges and the ringing of bells. These observances were abolished at the accession of Elizabeth, and in May 1564 Rich founded a grammar school at Felsted, which afforded education to two sons of Oliver Cromwell, to Isaac Barrow, and to Wallis the mathematician. New buildings were commenced in 1860, and Felsted is now the principal school in the eastern counties. Rich also founded almshouses in Felsted, and built the tower of Rochford church. His own seat was Leighs Priory, which was purchased in 1735 by Guy's Hospital. His town house in Cloth Fair, Bartholomew Close, afterwards called Warwick House, is still standing (1896).
  • By his wife Elizabeth (d. 1558), daughter and heiress of William Jenks or Gynkes, grocer, of London, Rich had five sons and ten daughters. Of the sons, Sir Hugh, the second, was buried at Felsted on 27 Nov. 1554; the eldest, Robert (1537?–1581), succeeded to the title, and, unlike his father, accepted the doctrines of the Reformation. He was employed on various diplomatic negotiations by Elizabeth, and was one of the judges who tried the Duke of Norfolk for his share in the Ridolfi plot. He was succeeded in the title by his second son, Robert (afterwards Earl of Warwick) [see under Rich, Penelope, Lady]. Of the daughters, Elizabeth married Sir Robert Peyton (d. 1590); Winifred (d. 1578) married, first, Sir Henry Dudley, eldest son of the future duke of Northumberland, and, secondly, Roger, second Lord North [q. v.], by whom she was mother of Sir John North [q. v.]; Ethelreda or Audrey married Robert, son of Sir William Drury of Hawsted, Suffolk, and cousin of Sir William Drury [q. v.]; Frances married John, lord D'Arcy of Chiche (d. 1580), son of the lord chamberlain to Edward VI. Rich had also four illegitimate children, of whom Richard was father of Sir Nathaniel Rich [q. v.]
  • [The best life of Rich, especially with regard to genealogical information, is contained in Sargeaunt's Hist. of Felsted School, pp. 80–8; other accounts are given in Campbell's Lives of the Chancellors, Foss's Judges, Manning's Speakers of the House of Commons, and Cooper's Athenæ Cantabr.; see also Letters and Papers of Hen. VIII, ed. Gairdner; Cal. State Papers, Dom. Ser.; Acts of the Privy Council; Rymer's Fœdera; Journals of the Houses of Lords and Commons; Parl. Hist.; State Trials; Hatfield MSS. pt. i.; Official Return of M.P.'s; Collins's State Papers; Wriothesley's Chronicle, Chron. of Calais, Chron. of Queen Jane, Troubles connected with the Prayer Book, The Suppression of the Monasteries, and Narr. of the Reformation (all in Camden Soc.); Camden's Elizabeth, 1717, i. 152; Lit. Remains of Edward VI (Roxburghe Club); Ellis's Original Letters; Stow's Annals; Holinshed's Chron.; Hayward's Raigne of Edward Sixt; Strype's Works; Foxe's Actes and Mon.; Burnet's Hist. of the Reformation, ed. Pocock; Fuller's Worthies and Church Hist.; Lloyd's State Worthies; Cresacre More and Roper's Lives of Sir Thos. More; Baily's Life of Fisher; Myles Davies's Athenæ Brit.; Nichols's Progr. of Elizabeth, i. 93; Visitations of Essex in 1562 and 1612 (Harl. Soc.); Dugdale's Baronage; Wotton's Baronets; Burke's Extinct Peerage; G. E. C.'s Peerage; Morant's Essex; Waters's Chesters of Chicheley; Archæologia, xviii. 161; Journal of the Archæol. Assoc. xxvi. 162–3; Tytler's Edward VI and Mary; Dixon's Hist. of the Church of England; Maitland's Essays on the Reformation; Lingard and Froude's Histories; Barrett's Highways and Byways of Essex; Revue Britannique, August 1846, p. 344.]
  • From: https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Rich,_Richard_(1496%3F-1567)_(DNB00)
  • https://archive.org/stream/dictionaryofnati48stepuoft#page/123/mode/1up to https://archive.org/stream/dictionaryofnati48stepuoft#page/126/mode/1up

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  • RICH, Richard (1496/97-1567), of West Smithfield, Mdx., Rochford and Leighs, Essex.
  • b. 1496/97, s. of John Rich of Penton Mewsey, Hants by Agnes. educ. Camb.; M. Temple, adm. ?5 Feb. 1516. m. by May 1536, Elizabeth, da. of William Gynkes or Jenks of London, at least 3s. 9 or 10da., 1s. illegit. suc. fa. ?1509. Kntd. 12 June 1536; cr. Baron Rich 16 Feb. 1547.4
  • Offices Held
    • Master of revels, M. Temple 1516, butler 1519-20, Autumn reader 1529.
    • J.p. Essex, Herts. 1528-d., member, council of 15th Earl of Oxford by 1529; commr. subsidy, London 1540, relief, Essex 1550, goods of churches and fraternities 1553; other commissions 1529-d.; clerk of recognizances 22 Mar. 1532-7 Dec. 1548; attorney-gen. for Wales 13 May 1532-28 June 1558; dep. chief steward, duchy of Lancaster, south parts, 1532-6; recorder, Colchester 30 Sept. 1532-44; solicitor-gen. 10 Oct. 1533-13 Apr. 1536; chirographer, ct. common pleas 27 July 1535-3 July 1537; surveyor of the liveries 20 Apr. 1536-14 Mar. 1537; chancellor, ct. augmentations 24 Apr. 1536-24 Apr. 1544, jt. (with (Sir) Edward North) chancellor 24 Apr.-1 July 1544; groom, privy chamber in 1539; PC by Aug. 1540-Nov. 1558; treasurer, French war 1 May-Dec. 1544; bailiff, manor of Northwold May 1546; ld. chancellor 23 Oct. 1547-21 Dec. 1551; trier of petitions in the Lords Parlts. of Oct. 1553, Nov. 1554, 1559, 1563; chief steward, honor of Rayleigh 4 July 1558.5
    • Speaker of House of Commons 1536.
  • Richard Rich was born at Basingstoke, Hampshire. A tradition deriving from Stow links him with a family prominent in the affairs of London and of the Mercers’ Company during the 15th century, but the genealogies illustrating this line of descent date from the 17th century and contain numerous variations and some errors. He was the son of one John Rich of Penton Mewsey, who in 1509 left a house in Islington, Middlesex, to a son Richard, on condition that he was obedient to his mother. When during the trial of John Philpot, the Edwardian archdeacon of Winchester, Philpot stated that he was a son of Sir Peter Philpot of Hampshire, Rich remarked that Sir Peter was his near kinsman, wherefore he was the more sorry.
  • Like many of his contemporaries in the service of the crown, Rich owed his initial advancement to his legal training. He is probably to be identified with one ‘Master Shreche’ who entered the Middle Temple in February 1516; by 1529 he was sufficiently advanced to be chosen Autumn reader. He first tried to establish himself in public life by seeking office in the city of London, but he lost the election to the common sergeantship in 1526 to the crown’s nominee, William Walsingham, although he was promised the office at the next vacancy. Two years later he sought to bring himself to the attention of Wolsey by expressing interest in the chancellor’s proposed reform of the common law; again he failed to secure an office, although his letter to Wolsey may have influenced his appointment to the Essex and Hertfordshire commissions of the peace in December 1528.
  • Rich owed his return for Colchester to the 15th Earl of Oxford, of whose council he was a member. However, as another servant of the earl’s, Richard Anthony, had already been elected by the time that Oxford preferred Rich for the seat, which Anthony then resigned, it is probable that the earl had yielded to persuasion to make the change, although from what quarter can only be guessed: one of Rich’s friends, Thomas Audley, had already been designated as Speaker and chosen knight of the shire, and he could well have been the intermediary in Rich’s favour. Three years later Audley, now chancellor, may have helped Rich to obtain his first important office, that of solicitor-general. In this capacity Rich followed Audley into the House of Lords and on 20 Dec. 1534 a warrant was issued to pay him £20 for his attendance there. He has been shown to have shared in the drafting of several bills passed during this Parliament, among them those forbidding appeals to Rome, dissolving the lesser monasteries and establishing the court of augmentations. Ten days after the dissolution of Parliament on 14 Apr. 1536 he was appointed first chancellor of augmentations, a post for which he was probably in mind when it was created: his occupancy of it was to move the French ambassador Marillac to call Rich ‘the most wretched creature ... the first inventor of the destruction of the abbeys and monasteries [and] the general confiscation of church property’, a stigma which has continued to tarnish his memory.6
  • Still greater obloquy attaches to Rich’s part in the state trials of these years. As solicitor-general he had to prosecute those who denied the validity of the King’s second marriage or the royal supremacy. He prepared the indictment against the Nun of Kent and her associates in 1533, and in the following year he took part in the examination of the priors of Bevell in Nottinghamshire and of the Charterhouse in Axholme, Lincolnshire, who refused to accept the King as Supreme Head. He also helped to examine Bishop Fisher, but was probably not responsible for the unscrupulous tactics ascribed to him in Hall’s ‘Life’ of the bishop. It was, however, Rich’s testimony which was the gravamen of the indictment against Sir Thomas More and his evidence at the trial which was decisive in securing a conviction: in Roper’s account More retaliated by denouncing Rich as a perjurer, and for good measure as an idler and a gambler, epithets which the circumstances of their origin have helped to make synonymous with Rich’s name. By contrast, his scarcely less decisive part in the condemnation of Cromwell five years later is seldom held against him.7
  • It was a different kind of demonstration of his subservience to the crown that Rich gave in the Parliament of 1536, to which he was probably returned as one of the knights for Essex. Asked to choose a Speaker by the second day of the Parliament, the Commons had to beg for more time before deciding on Rich on the third day: whether this means that his election encountered opposition we cannot tell. His opening oration compared the King to Solomon for prudence and justice, to Samson for strength and bravery, and to Absalom for beauty. Equally extravagant was his concluding address likening the King’s care for his subjects to the sun’s influence upon the world. Next to nothing is known about his part in the preparation and management of the legislative programme, but Bishop Gardiner later recalled that he and Rich had advised on the drafting of a bill enacted giving authority to such as should succeed to the crown of the realm (28 Hen. VIII, c.17). After the dissolution Rich was paid the customary fee of £100 as Speaker.8
  • Rich was returned to the Parliaments of 1539 and 1545 as senior knight for Essex, with Sir Thomas Darcy as his junior colleague. Darcy, who had married a daughter of the Earl of Oxford, had probably first entered the Commons at a by-election following the death of Thomas Bonham in 1532 and had thus almost certainly been Rich’s fellow-knight at the Parliament of 1536. During the Parliament of 1539 Rich obtained a private Act (31 Hen. VIII, c.23) to assure him certain lands and in the last session signed another (32 Hen. VIII, c.77) concerning the King and Sir Thomas Wyatt I. Although no indenture survives to furnish the names of the Essex knights in 1542, Rich and Darcy were doubtless returned again; Rich’s signature appears at the foot of four Acts, all passed during its final session, for exchanges of lands between the King and several of his subjects, and he bore a message from the Commons on 4 Feb. 1544 to the Lords for a conference on the King’s style.9
  • By 1540, when the last monastic houses had been dissolved, Rich was presiding over the largest of the revenue courts and was, consequently, an important member of the Privy Council. An able administrator, he acquiesced in the policy of alienating land to meet the financial needs of the crown which began with a commission to Cromwell and Rich in 1539 to sell lands to the annual value of £6,000. During his chancellorship of the augmentations Rich was able to build up a considerable estate in Essex, chiefly through purchase; his principal gift, made by the King in 1536, was the small priory at Leighs, which Rich shortly rebuilt, and four other small manors worth £26 a year. As chancellor Rich had to defend himself against several charges of corruption before the King and Privy Council, and when under Mary the court was merged with the Exchequer further accusations were brought against him of faulty drafting of indentures in exchanges of land and in sales of wood and lead. None of these attacks issued in formal prosecution.
  • In his final months at the augmentations Rich joined Sir Thomas Wriothesley in mobilizing financial resources for the forthcoming French campaign and on 1 May 1544 he became treasurer for the French war. He crossed the Channel in July and for five months was in charge of pay, supplies and transport. His final account does not seem to survive, but a memorandum puts his outgoings from 1 May to 18 Oct. 1544 as £424,692, a figure greatly in excess of his own and Wriothesley’s forecast of the previous spring. The King ‘marvelled’ at several of the discrepancies and it may not have been illness alone which caused Rich’s resignation and return in November. For the last three years of the reign he held no major appointment but he continued his association with the war effort, serving on special commissions for meeting its costs and for examining the royal revenues.
  • As the reign drew to its close Rich became increasingly identified with the conservative faction in the Privy Council. In 1546 he was involved in Bishop Bonner’s attempt to put down heresy in the diocese of London, especially in Rich’s adopted county of Essex, and according to Foxe it was Wriothesley and Rich who racked Anne Askew in order to discover her sympathisers at court. Yet he remained on good terms with Edward Seymour, Earl of Hertford, who at one stage recommended him for an appointment at Boulogne. He also connived at the destruction of the 3rd Duke of Norfolk and the Earl of Surrey, being one of the Councillors deputed to examine the duke. Henry VIII appointed him to be an assistant to the execution of his will and bequeathed him £200 for his pains.10
  • On the accession of Edward VI Rich was created a baron. He supported the assumption of the Protectorship by Hertford, now Duke of Somerset, and helped to engineer the removal of Wriothesley from the chancellorship. He himself was not the Protector’s immediate choice to hold the great seal, for William Paulet, Baron St. John, succeeded Wriothesley in March 1547, but in October, before the opening of the first Edwardian Parliament, he became chancellor. In this capacity he was instrumental in securing the passage of Somerset’s legislation during the first session. The bill repealing the Treason Acts of Henry VIII was committed to him after its first reading in the House of Lords and again after the fifth reading when he annexed certain provisos to it; when this bill was rejected by the Commons Rich was a member of the committee of both Houses which discussed the new bill introduced there. During the same session an Act was passed for the assurance of certain lands to Rich and (Sir) William Shelley (1 Edw. VI, no. 13). Both membranes of the Act for the King’s general pardon were signed by Rich and six other Privy Councillors.11
  • At first Rich put the power and dignity of the chancellorship behind the Council’s policy of gradual Reformation. He ordered the bishops to adopt the new rite ordained by the Prayer Book of 1549 and commanded the justices to ensure the conformity of lay people. He also confirmed the sentences of deprivation passed against Bonner and Gardiner. An enemy of religious extremism, he suppressed Protestant conventicles in Essex; in 1551 he was a reluctant witness at the trial of Gardiner. Although he spent considerable time presiding over Chancery in person, he could not avoid the factional strife within the Council. He took the formal lead in prosecuting Admiral Seymour, and in the coup d’état of October 1549 he joined the Councillors against the Protector and used his good relations with the mayor and aldermen of London to win their support: a contemporary witness also judged that Rich’s use of letters under the great seal to countermand the Protector’s appeals for assistance to sheriffs and justices was decisive in securing the Council’s victory. His signature is to be found on four Acts, including one for the fine and ransom of Somerset, passed during the third session of Parliament in the autumn of 1549.12
  • Rich did not support John Dudley, Earl of Warwick, in his political manoeuvring during 1551. He sealed the warrants for the arrest and trial of Somerset and, when he fell ill, established a commission to hear causes in Chancery in his absence. The illness may have been genuine but it was also timely in that Rich retained office while avoiding the final conflict between Somerset and Warwick. Yet it was not enough to save him. Following a rumour that Somerset, taught by the experience of 1549, had attempted to obtain the great seal, Rich was visited on 31 Dec. at his house in Smithfield by Dudley, newly created Duke of Northumberland, and had the seal taken from him. It was to be almost a year before he attended another meeting of the Council, and he was never to hold great office again. One of his last acts as chancellor had been to sign a bill for the city of London which was to be enacted in the fourth session of Parliament, which met early in 1552.13
  • Rich was one of those who subscribed on 21 June 1553 to the device settling the crown on Lady Jane Grey. Three days later he received the honor of Rayleigh, clearly a reward for his acquiescence and an attempt to ensure his support. It failed of its purpose, for on Edward VI’s death he quickly declared for Mary. He was confirmed as a Privy Councillor and one of his first tasks was as a commissioner of claims for the Queen’s coronation. He appears to have attended Council meetings infrequently during Mary’s reign, but even if in Parliament he opposed one ecclesiastical measure probably for fear it would cost him his monastic properties, as a justice in Essex he enforced the Catholic restoration so ruthlessly that Strype denounced him as a ‘severe persecutor’. With the 16th Earl of Oxford and other Essex notables he supervised the burning of heretics, and in 1556 he served on the commission inquiring into the property of those who fled the realm on religious grounds. Rich’s primary concern in breaking up conventicles and suppressing heresy among the artisans of Essex seems to have been for the preservation of order and the maintenance of authority: he was more interested in conformity than in theology. One of his daughters is said to have entered the revived Bridgettine house at Syon as a nun. During the first session of the Parliament of 1558 the bill whereby he granted the manor of Rayleigh to the Queen was debated and enacted (4 and 5 Phil. and Mary, no. 11). He was obliged to surrender further properties but to compensate him for their loss he was soon afterwards made steward of the manor.14
  • At the accession of Elizabeth, Rich accompanied her on her leisurely progress to London. The new Queen did not confirm his appointment as a Privy Councillor but she retained his services and he continued to be styled Councillor until his death. It is possible that at one time he was nominated to the order of the Garter, for on a licence of January 1563 he is styled KG. In the new conditions he was able to repurchase several of the properties surrendered earlier, notably St. Bartholomew’s priory for which he had originally paid £1,605 in 1544 and which he had surrendered in December 1555 without compensation. Excluded from authority at the centre Rich played a prominent role in Essex, where he had become a principal landowner. He was an active justice of the peace and intervened in parliamentary elections, as when in 1563 he sought unsuccessfully to have his heir Robert chosen a knight of the shire. In the Parliament of 1559 Rich voted against the Act of Uniformity, and in 1566 he was a member of a delegation from both Houses which addressed the Queen on the subject of her marriage and the succession.
  • Rich died at Rochford on 12 June 1567 and was buried at Felstead on 8 July. By the terms of his will, dated 12 May 1567 but with two codicils added nearly a month later, he devised most of his estates upon his surviving son Robert. His nine surviving daughters, all married, were to share the movable goods. An illegitimate son Richard was also provided for, with a stipulation that he was to be brought up in the study of the common law. The will arranged for the establishment of an almshouse in Rochford, but Rich had already made his principal benefactions. On the death of his eldest son Hugh he had founded a chantry at Felstead, licensed in April 1555, and a perpetual Lenten herring dole for the poor of Felstead and neighbouring parishes: in conformity with the Elizabethan settlement the chantry was converted into a grammar school and an almshouse established. Drawings of Rich and his wife made by Holbein survive.15
  • From: http://www.historyofparliamentonline.org/volume/1509-1558/member/rich-richard-149697-1567

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  • Richard Rich
  • Birth: c. 1496 London, Greater London, England
  • Death: Jun. 12, 1567 Rochford, Essex, England
  • British Statesman, 1st Baron Rich of Leez. Lord Chancellor of England under Edward VI from 1547 to 1551. One of the most ruthless figures in the history of British politics, he attained great wealth and power during his country's turbulent Reformation period. His duplicitous testimony secured the executions of Thomas More and Bishop John Fisher for treason in 1535. Rich was born in London, and studied law at the Middle Temple from 1516. He had an early reputation as a rake, and More, who lived in the same parish at the time, would dredge this up at his trial: "You were esteemed very light of your tongue, a great dicer and gamester, and of no commendable fame". By 1529 he had found a patron in the timeserving Thomas Audley, Speaker of the "Long Parliament" that began that year, and was duly elected to the House of Commons representing his new home base in Essex. From here his career trajectory was set. Rich was an efficient civil servant who got unpleasant tasks done - one of his earliest government jobs (1529) was as a London sewer commissioner - and this made his services desirable to those in power, regardless of their agendas. He would bank on their cynical pragmatism, outwitting enemies and allies alike with his amoral ambition. In 1532, the year Audley succeeded More as de facto Lord Chancellor, Rich was named Attorney General for Wales, and the following year he was knighted and became England's Solicitor General. Although he was a Catholic, Rich assisted Thomas Cromwell in the dissolution of the monasteries and the enforcement of Henry VIII's Act of Supremacy. This included interrogating the Carthusian monks who were executed for treason at Tyburn in May and June of 1535. His actions were decisive in silencing the Reformation's most outspoken critics, Bishop Fisher and More, both of whom he interviewed during their imprisonment in the Tower of London. He deceived Fisher into giving his honest opinion of the Supremacy Act by claiming the king wanted to know it in strictest secrecy, and was the only witness at Fisher's trial for treason on June 17, 1535. More was too shrewd a lawyer to fall for such a ploy, and at his trial on July 1 Rich falsely testified that rhetorical speculations More had exchanged with him were "malicious" rejections of the new law. Looking his accuser in the eye, More told Rich "I am more sorry for your perjury than I am for my own peril" before refuting the charge, noting he would never have confided in a man of such dubious character. More was found guilty and beheaded on July 6. (Fisher had gone to the block on June 22). Rich profited well from his treachery. He was elected Speaker for the 1536 Parliament and King Henry gifted him with the former Augustinian Priory in Leez, Essex, which he rebuilt into a handsome estate. During the failed Catholic "Pilgrimage of Grace" uprising in York (1536) Rich was linked with Cromwell and Thomas Cranmer and marked for death by the rebels. As first Chancellor of the newly-created Court of Augmentations (1536 to 1544) he supervised the transfer of vast revenues from dissolved Catholic institutions to the Crown, a position he used to acquire extensive properties in Essex. On two occasions he was accused of embezzlement, but the charges were dismissed; instead he was appointed Groom of the Privy Chamber (1539) and to the Privy Council (1540), signs of the confidence Henry placed in him. That Rich was his own favorite cause became transparent with Cromwell's downfall in 1540. He not only deserted his friend and benefactor but was a chief witness against him at his trial. In May 1544 he accompanied the king across the channel as Treasurer of the French War. He resigned in November, pleading ill health, but this occurred after the monarch discovered huge discrepancies in his accounts. Lord Chancellor Thomas Wriothesley protected Rich at court by employing him as his secretary and he remained active in the Privy Council, persecuting Catholics as well as Lutherans who did not conform to the Anglican Church. With Wriothesley he personally tortured accused heretic Anne Askew in the Tower (1546), breaking her on the rack even though English law prohibited the use of torture on women. In his will of December 1546, one month before his death, Henry named Rich an assistant to the Council of Regents who would oversee the rule of his son Edward (then nine years old) until he reached 18. He also left instructions to elevate Rich to the peerage, and in February 1547 he was created 1st Baron Rich of Leez. Within days Edward Seymour, 1st Duke of Somerset, had bribed the Regency Council into naming him Lord Protector of the Realm. His enemy Lord Chancellor Wriothesley could not be bought, so Rich helped engineer his patron's ouster on legal technicalities. As a reward he was appointed new Lord Chancellor on October 23, 1547. ....
  • Burial: Holy Cross Churchyard, Felsted, Uttlesford District, Essex, England
  • Plot: Canopied tomb in Rich Chapel
  • Find A Grave Memorial# 45292808
  • From: http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=45292808

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  • Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 48
  • Rich, Richard (fl.1610) by Charlotte Fell Smith
  • RICH, RICHARD (fl. 1610), author of ‘Newes from Virginia,’ was possibly the Richard Rich, illegitimate son of Richard, first baron Rich [q. v.], and father of Sir Nathaniel Rich [q. v.] He is said to be related to Barnabe Rich [q. v.], and was a soldier and adventurer, who sailed on 2 June 1609 from Plymouth for Virginia in the Sea Venture, which was commanded by Captain Christopher Newport [q. v.] In the same vessel were the three commissioners, Sir Thomas Gates [q. v.], Lord de la Warr, and Sir George Somers [q. v.], who were directed to colonise the new country. The fleet consisted of nine vessels. A violent storm separated the Sea Venture from the other ships, and drove her on to the rocks of the Bermudas, where her crew and passengers were forced to remain for forty-two weeks. During that time they built two pinnaces of cedarwood, in which they ultimately proceeded to Virginia.
  • Rich reached England in 1610, and published, on 1 Oct., a poem, entitled ‘Nevves from Virginia. The lost Flocke Triumphant. With the happy Arriual of that famous and worthy knight Sr Thomas Gates; and the well reputed and valiant captaine Mr. Christopher Newporte, and others, into England. With the manner of their distresse in the Iland of Deuils (otherwise called Bermoothawes), where they remayned 42 weekes, and builded two Pynaces, in which they returned into Virginia, by R. Rich, gent., one of the voyage, London, Printed by Edw. Allde, and are to be solde by John Wright, at Christ Church dore, 1610,’ 4to. The poem consists of twenty-two eight-line verses, to which is added a brief and bluntly humorous preface. His object was to ‘spread the truth’ about the new colony, and he announced his intention of returning with Captain Newport next year to Virginia. The only known copy is in the Huth Library. It was formerly included in Lord Charlemont's collection, where it was found in 1864 by James Orchard Halliwell[-Phillipps], who reprinted it in 1865 in a limited edition of only ten copies. Twenty-five copies were reprinted by Quaritch for private circulation (London, 1874). Both reprints lack the woodcut of a ship, which is in the original.
  • The narratives by Rich and others of the Bermudas adventure—Rich spells the word ‘Bermoothawes,’ Shakespeare spells it ‘Bermoothes’—doubtless suggested to Shakespeare some of the scenes in his ‘Tempest’ (cf. arts. Newport, Christopher; Gates, Sir Thomas; and Jourdain, Silvester; and Malone, Account of the Incidents from which Shakespeare's ‘Tempest’ was derived, London, 1808).
  • Rich speaks in his preface of another work on Virginia, to be ready in ‘a few daies.’ An entry in the ‘Stationers' Register’ gives under the same date (1610) ‘Good Speed to Virginia.’ But no second book by Rich has been discovered.
  • [Arber's Transcript of the Reg. of Stationers' Hall, iii. 444; Catalogue of the Huth Library, iv. 1247; editions of the Newes mentioned above; Hazlitt's Handbook to the Lit. of Great Britain, p. 506.]
  • From: https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Rich,_Richard_(fl.1610)_(DNB00)
  • https://archive.org/stream/dictionaryofnati48stepuoft#page/126/mode/1up to https://archive.org/stream/dictionaryofnati48stepuoft#page/127/mode/1up

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  • 'Rich1'
  • John le Rich of Rich's Place (a Edward II who r. 1307-1327)
    • 1. Robert le Rich (a Edward III who r. 1327-1377)
      • A. John le Rich of Rich's Place (a 1426)
        • i. Richard Rich, Sheriff then Mayor of London (d 1469?)
        • Visitation starts with a Richard of London father of Richard (d 1461, Sheriff of London) father of (Hugh, Robert &) John of London (d 29.07.1458) father of Thomas (m. Margaret Shaa), Richard (1st Lord, m. Elizabeth Jenkes) & various daughters (shown below). TCP starts with this Richard, identifying him as father of Thomas (2nd son) father of Richard father of 1st Lord Richard. TCP therefore supports BEB1844 which we follow.
          • a. John Rich (dvp)
            • (1) John Rich in London
              • (A) Thomas Rich of London
              • m. Margaret Shaw (dau of Sir Edward (sb Edmund) Shaw or Shaa, Lord Mayor of London)
                • (i) Richard Rich of Weld or Weald
                • m. Rachael Newborough (dau of Thomas Newborough of Berkly)
                  • (a) Edward Rich of Horndon (d 1599)
                  • m. Joan Saunders (dau of Edward Saunders of London)
                  • (b) Elizabeth Rich
                  • m. Charles Wingfeild
                  • (c)+ othe issue - Robert (a 1620, master in Chancery), Margaret (dsp), Mary (dsp), Frances (dsp)
                • (ii) Catherine Rich
                • m1. _ Barker
                • m2. Sir Ralph Wiseman of Ravenhall (Rivenhall)
          • b. Thomas Rich, Sheriff of London (d 1469)
          • m. Elizabeth Meyne of London
            • (1) Richard Rich
            • m. Joan Dingley
              • (A) Richard Rich of Leigh Priory, 1st Lord of Leighs (b c1496, d 1568, Lord Chancellor, 2nd son?)
              • m. (c1535) Elizabeth Jenks (bur 18.12.1558, dau of William Jenks or Gynkes of London)
                • (i) Hugh Rich (dvpsp 01.11.1547)
                • m. Anne Wentworth (bur 10.01.1580/1, dau of Sir John Wentworth of Gosfield or Codham)
                • (ii) Robert Rich, 2nd Lord of Leighs (b c1537, d 27.02.1580/1)
                • m. Elizabeth Baldry (bur 19.12.1591, dau of George Baldry of Hadley (alderman of London), m2. Robert Forth)
                  • (a) Richard Rich (dvpsp 1580)
                  • m. Catherine Knevitt (dau of Sir Henry Knevitt of Norfolk)
                  • (b) Robert Rich, 1st Earl of Warwick (b 12.1559, d 24.03.1618/9)
                  • m1. (10/1.1581, div 11.1605) Penelope Devereux (dau of Walter Devereux, 1st Earl of Essex)
                  • m2. (14.12.1616) Frances Wray (d 08.1634, dau of Sir Christopher Wray of Glentworth)
                  • (c) Sir Edwyn Rich of Mulbarton and Bracon Ashe (d before 26.02.1647)
                  • m. Honora (or Margaret) Wolryche (dau of Charles Wolryche of Wickham Brook and Cowling)
                    • ((1)) Robert Rich (dsp)
                    • m. Elizabeth Felton (dau of Sir Adam Felton of Playford)
                    • ((2)) Sir Edwyn Rich of Lincoln's Inn and Mulbarton (dsp 16.11.1675)
                    • m. Jane Reeve (widow of Sir John Suckling)
                    • ((3)) Sir Charles Rich of London, 1st Bart (b 1619, bur 30.05.1677)
                    • m. (28.11.1641) Elizabeth Cholmeley (d by 1694, dau of John Cholmeley of Kirkby Underwood)
                      • ((A)) Elizabeth Rich
                      • m. Pierre de Ceville, later Rich
                      • ((B)) Mary Rich (bur 23.12.1714)
                      • m. (17.02.1675-6) Sir Robert Rich of Roos Hall, later 2nd Bart (b 1648, d 01.10.1699)
                    • ((4)) Frances Rich
                    • m. Nathaniel Acton
                    • ((5))+ other issue - Margaret, Honora
                  • (d) Frances Rich
                  • m. Thomas Camock
                  • (e) Elizabeth Rich
                  • m. _ Castleton
                • (iii) Thomas Rich (dvp)
                • m. _ Fisher
                • (iv) Margery Rich
                • m. Henry Pigot of Abingdon
                • (v) Agnes Rich
                • m. Edward Mordaunt of Thunderley
                • (vi) Mary Rich
                • m. Sir Thomas Wrothe of Enfield
                • (vii) Elizabeth Rich
                • m. Sir Robert Peyton of Iselham
                • (viii) Dorothy Rich
                • m. Francis Barley of Kimton
                • (ix) Winifride Rich
                • m1. Sir Henry Dudley
                • m2. Sir Roger North, 2nd Lord of Kirtling (d 03.12.1600)
                • (x) Ethelreda or Audrey Rich
                • m. Robert Drury, younger of Hawstead (d 1557)
                • (xi) Anne Rich
                • m. Thomas Pigot or Picot of Straton
                • (xii) Frances Rich
                • m. John Darcy, 2nd Lord of Chiche (b c1532, d 03.03.1580/1)
                • (xiii)+ other issue - son (dsp), Barbara
          • c. daughter mentioned but not named by BEB1844, not mentioned by Visitation
          • m. Robert Lane
          • d. Catherine Rich mentioned but not named by BEB1844, named by Visitation
          • m. William Marrowe, Lord Mayor of London (a 1457)
          • e. Margaret Rich mentioned but not named by BEB1844, named by Visitation
          • m1. _ Boston of London
          • m2. John Walden (alderman of London)
          • f. Anne Rich mentioned but not named by BEB1844, named by Visitation
          • m. Thomas Urswick (baron of the Exchequer)
        • ii. William Rich
  • Main source(s): BE1883 (Rich), BEB1844 (Rich of London), TCP (Rich), BP1934 (Rich), Visitation (Essex, 1612, Rich)
  • From: Stirnet.com
  • http://www.stirnet.com/genie/data/british/qr/rich1.php

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The historian Lord Dacre dismissed RIchard Rich as a man "of whom nobody has ever spoken a good word".

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Added by Janice Forbes: a Wikipedia article on my 14th great grandfather, who appears to have been a villain:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Rich,_1st_Baron_Rich

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'Worst' historical Britons named 1500 to 1600: Sir Richard Rich (Lord Rich of Leighs) (1496/7-1567)

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4560716.stm

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http://www.luminarium.org/encyclopedia/richardrich.htm

RICHARD RICH, first Baron Rich (1496?-1567), lord chancellor, second son of Richard Rich and Joan Dingley, his wife, was probably born in 1496, since early in 1551 he is officially described as fifty-four years of age and more. The family was of Hampshire origin, and the chancellor's great-grandfather, Richard Rich (d. 1469), a prominent member of the Mercers' Company, served as sheriff of the city of London in 1441. He left two sons, John (d. 1458), from whom are descended the baronets of the Rich family, and Thomas, grandfather of the lord chancellor. The visitation of Essex in 1512 represents the chancellor as second son of John Rich, who died on 19 July 1468, which is impossible. Robert, a brother of the chancellor, died in 1557.

Rich was born in the parish of St. Laurence Jewry, in the church of which several of his family were buried. Cooper states that he was at one time a member of Cambridge University, and in 1539 be was an unsuccessful candidate for the chancellorship of that university against the Duke of Norfolk. He was bred to the law, entered the Middle Temple, and formed an acquaintance with Sir Thomas More, a native of the same parish and member of the same inn. 'You know,' said More to Rich at his trial, 'that I have been acquainted with your manner of life and conversation a long space, even from your youth to this time; for we dwelt long together in one parish, where, as yourself can well tell (I am sorry you compel me to speak it), you were always esteemed very light of your tongue, a great dicer and gamester, and not of any commendable fame either there or at your house in the Temple, where hath been your bringing up.'1

Rich, however, in spite of his dissipation, acquired an intimate knowledge of the law. In 1526 be was an unsuccessful candidate for the office of common serjeant against William Walsingham, the father of Sir Francis. In 1528 he wrote to Wolsey urging a reform of the common law, and offering to describe the abuses in daily use, and to suggest remedies. In the following December he was placed on the commission for the peace in Hertfordshire, and in February 1529 was made a commissioner of sewers. In the autumn he became reader at the Middle Temple, and in November was returned as one of the burgesses of Colchester to the 'reformation' parliament which sat from 1529 to 1536. In June 1530 he was placed on the commission for gaol delivery at Colchester Castle, and in July was one of those appointed to make a return of Wolsey's possessions in Essex. In March 1532 he was granted the clerkship of recognisances of debt taken in London, and on 13 May was appointed attorney-general for Wales and the counties palatine of Flint and Chester.

On 10 Oct. 1533 he was made solicitor-general, and knighted. In this capacity he took the leading part in the crown prosecutions for non-compliance with the acts of succession and supremacy. In April 1535 he assisted at the examination of the three Carthusian monks who were executed shortly after at Tyburn. Baily's story2 that Rich was sent to Fisher with a secret message from Henry to the effect that he would not accept the supremacy of the church if Fisher disapproved is improbable; but in May Rich came to the Tower and endeavoured to ascertain the bishop's real views on the subject, assuring him on the king's word that no advantage would be taken of his admissions, and promising that he would repeat them to no one but the king. Nevertheless this conversation was made the principal evidence on which Fisher was condemned, and at his trial he denounced Rich for his treachery in revealing it.

Similarly base was Rich's conduct towards Sir Thomas More. On 12 June he had an interview with More in the Tower, in which, according to his own account, he 'charitably moved' the ex-chancellor to comply with the acts. But at the trial he gave evidence that More had denied the power of parliament to make the king supreme head of the church; the words rested solely on Rich's testimony, and More charged Rich with perjury, 'ïn good faith, Mr. Rich,' he said, 'I am more sorry for your perjury than mine own peril; and know you that neither I nor any one else to my knowledge ever took you to be a man of such credit as either I or any other could vouchsafe to communicate with you in any matter of importance.' Rich attempted to substantiate the accusation by calling Sir Richard Southwell and Palmer, who had attended him in the Tower; but they both professed to have been too busy removing More's books to listen to the conversation. More was condemned, and Rich reaped his reward by being appointed before the end of the year overseer of liveries of lands, and chirographer of common pleas.

Meanwhile the lesser monasteries had been dissolved, and to deal with their revenues there was formed the court of augmentations of the revenue of the crown. This court was a committee of the privy council, and Rich, who was probably at the same time sworn of the council, was made its first chancellor on 19 April 1536. He was returned probably as knight of the shire for Essex to the parliament which met on 8 June and was dissolved on 18 July 1536, and was elected speaker. In his opening speech he compared the king with Solomon for justice and prudence, with Samson for strength and fortitude, and with Absalom for beauty and comeliness, and in his oration at the close of the session he likened Henry to the sun which expels all noxious vapours and brings forth the seeds, plants, and fruit s necessary for the support of human life.

He was now perhaps, next to Cromwell, the most powerful and the most obnoxious of the king's ministers. When in the same year the northern rebellion [cf. Pilgrimage of Grace] broke out, the insurgents coupled his name with Cromwell's in their popular songs, and in the list of articles they drew up demanded his dismissal and punishment, describing him as a man of low birth and small reputation, a subverter of the good laws of the realm, a maintainer and inventor of heretics, and one who imposed taxes for his own advantage. The failure of the rebellion was followed by the suppression of the remaining religious houses, and Rich devoted himself zealously to the work, being described as the hammer, as Cromwell was the mall, of the monasteries. Occasionally he visited a monastery himself, but his chief occupation was the administration of their revenues, and it was natural that some of the enormous wealth which passed through his hands should stick to his fingers. In 1539 he was appointed, as groom of the privy chamber, to meet Anne of Cleves at Calais; but he deserted Cromwell in the disgrace which consequently overtook him, and was one of the chief witnesses against his friend and benefactor.

Cromwell's fall was followed by a reaction against the Reformation, and Rich took an active part in the persecution of the reformers, working with Gardiner, and being described by Foxe as one of the papists in Henry's council. He was constant in his attendance at the privy council, and in April 1541 one John Hillary was committed to the Marshalsea for accusing Rich of deceiving the king as to the possessions of the abbey of Keynsham. In 1544 he resigned the chancellorship of the court of augmentations, and in the same year was treasurer of the wars against France and Scotland, accompanying Henry to Boulogne, and assisting in the negotiation of a treaty with France.

On 30 Dec. he was again returned to parliament as knight of the shire for Essex. In June 1546 he took part in the examination of Anne Askew, and was present when she was tortured in the Tower; according to her own explicit statement, Wriothesley and Rich 'took pains to rack me with their own hands till I was well nigh dead.'3 The story has been much discussed but never disproved, and 'is perhaps the darkest page in the history of any English statesman.'4

In spite of these proceedings, Rich's position was improved by the accession of Edward VI. Henry had appointed him an assistant executor of his will, bequeathed him £200, and, according to Paget, left instructions that he should be made a peer. On 20 Feb. 1547-8 he was created Baron Rich of Leeze (Leighs), Essex. In March Wriothesley was deprived of the lord-chancellorship, owing, it is said, to Rich's intrigues, and on 23 Oct. Rich was appointed lord chancellor. He acquiesced in the violent religious changes made by Somerset, signing the orders in council for the administration of the communion in both kinds and for the abolition of private masses. In 1549 he took part in the proceedings against the Protector's brother, Lord Seymour of Sudeley; having obtained an opinion from the judges and council, he conducted the bill of attainder through parliament, and afterwards signed the warrant for his execution.

On the outbreak of the rebellion in the same year he summoned the justices before him, and rated them for their neglect to preserve the peace in an harangue printed in Foxe. In October he accompanied Somerset to Hampton Court when the young king was removed thither; but, finding the Protector's party was deserting him, he took the great seal and joined Warwick at Ely House, Holborn. There, on 6 Oct., he described before the lord mayor the abuses of which Somerset was accused; he made a similar harangue at the Guildhall on the 8th, and on the 12th rode to Windsor bearing the news of the council's proceedings against Somerset to the king. He presided at Somerset's examination before the council, drew up the articles against him, obtained his confession, and brought in the bill of pains and penalties, by which the Protector was deprived of all his offices.

Rich may have thought that Warwick would reverse the religious policy of his predecessor, or perhaps the marriage of his daughter Winifred with Warwick's son. Sir Henry Dudley induced him to side against Somerset; but Warwick's triumph failed to improve his position. Probably against his will, he took part in the proceedings against Bonner and Gardiner. The eighth session of the court appointed to try the latter was held at Rich's house in St. Bartholomew's on 20 Jan. 1551, though at another stage of the proceedings Rich appeared as a witness in the bishop's favour. Similarly he was burdened with the chief part in the measures taken by the council against the Princess Mary. In 1560 he was sent to request her to move to Oking or come to court; she refused, but professed herself willing to accept Rich's hospitality at Leighs Priory. The visit was prevented by a dangerous sickness which broke out in the chancellor's household, and necessitated his absence from the council from June to November. More to Rich's taste were the measures he took against Joan Bocher and the sectaries of Booking.5

In August 1551 he was again sent to Mary at Copped Hall to forbid mass in her household. On 26 Oct. a commission was appointed to transact chancery business because of Rich's illness, and on 21 Dec. he resigned the great seal. Fuller, in his 'Church History,' relates a story communicated to him by Rich's great-grandson, the Earl of Warwick, to the effect that Rich had written a letter to Somerset, who he thought might yet return to power, warning him against some design of Northumberland. In his haste he addressed it merely 'to the duke,' and his servant handed it to the Duke of Norfolk, who revealed its contents to Northumberland. Rich, hearing of the mistake, only saved himself by going at once to the king and resigning the great seal. It is improbable, however, that Norfolk, who made Rich one of his executors, would have betrayed him ; at any rate, Rich did not resign the great seal to the king, but to Winchester, Northumberland, and D'Arcy, who were sent to his house for the purpose, and there can be no doubt of the genuineness of his illness. The great seal was entrusted for the time to Goodrich, bishop of Ely; but Rich's ill-health continuing, the bishop was definitely appointed lord chancellor on 19 Jan. 1551-2.

Rich now retired to Essex, where he was placed on a commission for the lord-lieutenancy in May; but he was still identified with the government of Northumberland, whom he appointed his proxy in the House of Lords. In November he recommenced his attendances at the privy council, and continued them through the early part of 1553. He was one of the commissioners who decided against Bonner's appeal early in that year, and on 9 July he signed the council's answer to Mary's remonstrance, pronouncing her a bastard and proclaiming Lady Jane Grey. But immediately afterwards he went down into Essex, and, paying no attention to a letter from the council on 19 July requiring him to remain faithful to Jane, declared for Mary. On the 21st a letter from the council ordered him to retire with his company to Ipswich 'until the queen's pleasure be further known;' and on 3 Aug. he entertained Mary at Wanstead on her way to London. His wife attended Mary on her entry into the city, and Rich was at once sworn of her council, and officiated at the coronation.

During Mary's reign Rich took little part in the government, and his attendances at the council were rare. He was one of the peers summoned to try Northumberland, and he was the only peer who voted against Gardiner's bill for the restoration of the see of Durham. But he vigorously abetted the restoration of the old religion in Essex; at Felsted he at once established masses for the dead, and he was a zealous persecutor of the heretics, examining them himself or sending them up to London, and being present at numerous executions. The excessive number of martyrs in Essex is attributed by Foxe to Rich's persecuting activity.

In 1557 he was raising forces for the war in France and defence of the Essex sea-coast, and in the following February attended Lord Clinton on his expedition against Brest. In November 1558 he was appointed to accompany Elizabeth to London, and in December was placed on a commission to inquire into lands granted during the late reign. He dissented from the act of uniformity, and in 1566 was summoned to discuss the question of the queen's marriage. He died at Rochford, Essex, on 12 June 1567, and was buried in Felsted church, where a recumbent effigy represents him with a small head and keen features; the inscriptions have been obliterated. His will, dated 12 May, with a codicil dated 10 June 1567, was proved on 3 June 1568. His portrait, by Holbein, is preserved among the Holbein drawings in the Royal Library at Windsor; it has been engraved by Bartolozzi and R. Dalton.

Rich has been held up to universal execration by posterity; catholics have denounced him as the betrayer of More and Fisher, and protestants as the burner of martyrs. A time-server of the least admirable type, he was always found on the winning side, and he had a hand in the ruin of most of the prominent men of his time, not a few of whom had been his friends and benefactors — Wolsey, More, Fisher, Cromwell, Wriothesley, Lord Seymour of Sudeley, Somerset, and Northumberland. His readiness to serve the basest ends of tyranny and power justifies his description as 'one of the most ominous names in the history of the age.'6 But his ability as a lawyer and man of business is beyond question.

His religious predilections inclined to Catholicism; but he did not allow them to stand in the way of his advancement. Few were more rapacious or had better opportunities for profiting by the dissolution of the monasteries; the manors he secured in Essex alone covered a considerable portion of the county. It should, however, be acknowledged that he used some of his ill-gotten wealth for a noble object, and that he was a patron of learning. In 1554 he founded a chaplaincy at Felsted, and made provision for the singing of masses and dirges and the ringing of bells. These observances were abolished at the accession of Elizabeth, and in May 1564 Rich founded a grammar school at Felsted, which afforded education to two sons of Oliver Cromwell, to Isaac Barrow, and to Wallis the mathematician. Rich also founded almshouses in Felsted, and built the tower of Rochford church. His own seat was Leighs Priory, which was purchased in 1735 by Guy's Hospital. His town house in Cloth Fair, Bartholomew Close, afterwards called Warwick House, is still standing (1896).

By his wife Elizabeth (d.1558), daughter and heiress of William Jenks or Gynkes, grocer, of London, Rich had five sons and ten daughters. Of the sons, Sir Hugh, the second, was buried at Felsted on 27 Nov. 1554; the eldest, Robert (1537?-1581), succeeded to the title, and, unlike his father, accepted the doctrines of the Reformation. He was employed on various diplomatic negotiations by Elizabeth, and was one of the judges who tried the Duke of Norfolk for his share in the Ridolfi plot. He was succeeded in the title by his second son, Robert (afterwards Earl of Warwick). Of the daughters, Elizabeth married Sir Robert Peyton (d.1590); Winifred (d.1578) married, first, Sir Henry Dudley, eldest son of the future duke of Northumberland, and, secondly, Roger, second Lord North, by whom she was mother of Sir John North; Ethelreda or Audrey married Robert, son of Sir William Drury of Hawsted, Suffolk, and cousin of Sir William Drury; Frances married John, lord D'Arcy of Chiche (d. 1580), son of the lord chamberlain to Edward VI. Rich had also four illegitimate children, of whom Richard was father of Sir Nathaniel Rich.

1. Cresacre More, Life of Sir T. More, ed. Hunter, p. 263. link 2. Baily, Life of Fisher. 3. Foxe, Acts and Monuments, p. 547. link 4. Froude, History of England, v. 208. link 5. cf. Dixon, History of the Church of England, iii. 212. 6. Dixon.

Excerpted from:

Pollard, A. F. "Richard Rich, first Baron Rich." Dictionary of National Biography. Vol. XVI. Sidney Lee, ed. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1909. 1009-1012.

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RICH FAMILY

Richard RICH

Born: ABT 1370, London, Middlesex, England

Buried: 1415, St. Lawrence Jewry, London, Middlesex, England

Married: ¿?

Children:

1. Richard RICH (Sheriff of London)

Richard RICH (Sheriff of London)

Born: ABT 1400, London, Middlesex, England

Died: 1464, Will Proved

Buried: St. Lawrence Jewry, London, Middlesex, England

Father: Richard RICH

Mother: ¿?

Married: Catherine ?

Children:

1. Thomas RICH

2. John RICH

3. Margaret (Margery) RICH

4. Anne RICH

5. Catherine RICH

Margaret (Margery) RICH

Born: ABT 1430, London, Middlesex, England

Father: Richard RICH (Sheriff of London)

Mother: Catherine ?

Married 1: Thomas BOSTON ABT 1435, London, Middlesex, England

Married 2: John WALDEN

Anne RICH

Born: ABT 1434, London, England

Father: Richard RICH (Sheriff of London)

Mother: Catherine ?

Married: Son URSWICK

Catherine RICH

Born: ABT 1440, London, England

Father: Richard RICH (Sheriff of London)

Mother: Catherine ?

Married: William MARROW ABT 1460, London, England

Children:

1. Catherine MARROW (m. Robert Throckmorton of Coughton)

John RICH

Born: ABT 1408, London, England

Buried: 29 Jul 1458, Mercers Chapel, London, England

Father: Richard RICH (Sheriff of London)

Mother: Catherine ?

Married: Isabel Catherine RICH

Children:

1. John RICH

John RICH

Father: John RICH

Mother: Isabel Catherine RICH

Married: ¿?

Children:

1. Thomas RICH

Thomas RICH

Father: John RICH

Mother: ¿?

Married: Dau. SHAW (dau. of Sir Edward Shaw, Lord Mayor of London)

Children:

1. Richard RICH of Weld

Richard RICH of Weld

Father: Thomas RICH

Mother: Dau. SHAW

Married: Rachel NEWBOROUGH (dau. of Thomas Newborough of Berkly)

Children:

1. Edward RICH of Horndon

2. Robert RICH (d. AFT 1620)

Edward RICH of Horndon

Died: 1599

Father: Richard RICH of Weld

Mother: Rachel NEWBOROUGH

Married: Joan SAUNDERS

Children:

1. Robert RICH of Stondon (m. Elizabeth Dutton, dau. of Sir Thomas Dutton)

Thomas RICH

Born: ABT 1432, London, England

Father: Richard RICH (Sheriff of London)

Mother: Catherine ?

Married 1: Elizabeth (Main) MAYNE ABT 1464

Children:

1. Richard RICH

Married 2: Margaret ?

Richard RICH

Born: ABT 1470, London, England

Died: AFT 8 Sep 1503

Father: Thomas RICH

Mother: Elizabeth (Main) MAYNE

Married: Joan DINGLEY 1495

Children:

1. Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

2. Robert RICH

3. Hugh RICH (b. ABT 1500 - d. 1585)

4. Elizabeth RICH

Elizabeth RICH

Born: ABT 1502

Father: Richard RICH

Mother: Joan DINGLEY

Married: Charles WINGFIELD Children:

1. Henry WINGFIELD

2. William WINGFIELD

3. Anthony WINGFIELD of St. Clement's Dane

Richard RICH (1° B. Rich of Leez)

Born: BET 1490/1508, St Lawrence Jewry, London, Middlesex, England

Acceded: 26 Feb 1548

Died: 12 Jun 1567, Rochford, Essex, England

Buried: 8 Jul 1567, Felsted Church, Essex, England

Notes: See his Biography.

Father: Richard RICH

Mother: Joan DINGLEY

Married 1: Elizabeth JENKINS (b. 1510- d. 16 Dec 1558) (dau. of William Gynkes and Elizabeth Adams) BEF May 1536

Children:

1. Mary RICH

2. Hugh RICH

3. Elizabeth RICH

4. Audrey (Etheldreda) RICH

5. Dorothy RICH

6. Winifred RICH (B. North)

7. Robert RICH (2° B. Rich of Leez)

8. Frances RICH (B. Darcy of Chiche)

9. Dau. RICH

10. Nicholas RICH (b. 1550 - d. 1600)

11. Dau. RICH

12. Agnes RICH

13. Edward RICH

14. Richard RICH

Married 2: Elizabeth COLWELL

Associated with: ¿?

Children:

15. Richard RICH

Mary RICH

Born: ABT 1526, Enfield, England

Died: 8 Jan 1598

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married: Thomas WROTH (Sir) 1538

Children:

1. Robert WROTH (Sir Knight) (b. 1540 - d. 27 Jan 1605) (m. Susan Stonner)

2. Mabel WROTH (b. 1541 - d. AFT 1597) (m.1 Edward Aucher, Esq. - m.2 Richard Hardress)

3. Thomas WROTH (Sir Knight) (b. 1542 - d. AFT 1610) (m. Joan Bulmer) 4. Edward (Edmund) WROTH (b. 1546 - d. AFT 1573)

5. John WROTH (b. 1548 - d. AFT 1573)

6. Gerson WROTH (b. 1550 - d. AFT 1573)

7. Peter WROTH (b. 1552 - d. AFT 1573)

8. Elizabeth WROTH (b. 1554 - d. 14 Aug 1614) (m.1 George Mynne - m.2 Nicholas Butler)

9. Judith WROTH (b. 1556 - d. Mar 1614) (m. Robert Burgoyne)

10. Winifred WROTH (m. Thomas Goddard)

11. Anne WROTH

12. Mary WROTH (m.1 Isaac Hill - m.2 John Hussey)

13. Frances WROTH

14. Richard WROTH (b. 1566 - d. AFT 1573)

Hugh RICH

Born: 1529, England

Died: BEF 1555

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married: Anne WENTWORTH (B. Maltravers)

Elizabeth RICH

Born: ABT 1530, Cambridgeshire, England

Died: 17 Oct 1591, Isleham, Cambridgeshire, England

Buried: 26 Oct 1591, South Chapel at Isleham, Cambridgeshire, England

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married: Robert PEYTON 12 Apr 1557, Cambridgeshire, England

Children:

1. John PEYTON (1º Bt.)

Audrey (Etheldreda) RICH

Born: ABT 1533, London, England

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married: Robert DRURY of Hawstead

Children:

1. William DRURY of Hawstead (Sir)

2. Henry DRURY of Lawshall

3. Thomas DRURY (living 1602)

4. Robert DRURY

5. Anne DRURY

6. Mary DRURY

7. Elizabeth DRURY

8. Susan DRURY

9. Winifred DRURY

10. Bridget DRURY

11. Dorothy DRURY

12. Audrey (Ethelreda) DRURY

Dorothy RICH

Born: ABT 1534, Kimpton, Hertfordshire, England

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married: Francis BARLYE ABT 1559

Winifred RICH (B. North of Kirtling)

Born: 1534, London, Middlesex, England

Died: 1578

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married 1: Henry DUDLEY (Sir) ABT 1552, Cambridgeshire, England

Married 2: Roger NORTH (2° B. North of Kirtling) 1555, London, Middlesex, England

Children:

1. Thomas NORTH (b. 1555)

2. Henry NORTH (Sir Knight)

3. John NORTH (3° B. North of Kirtling)

4. Mary NORTH (b. 1558)

Frances RICH (B. Darcy of Chiche)

Born: ABT 1539, Leez Priory, Essex, England

Died: BEF 3 Mar 1581

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married: John DARCY (2° B. Darcy of Chiche) ABT 1564, Chiche, Essex, England

Children:

1. Elizabeth DARCY (B. Lumley)

2. Thomas DARCY (1° E. Rivers)

Agnes RICH

Born: ABT 1545, Enfield, England

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married: Edmund MORDAUNT 1580, Greensted, Essex, England

Richard RICH

Born: ABT 1551, England

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: ¿?

Married: Jane (Anne) MACHELL 13 Dec 1574, St Mary Aldermar, London, Middlesex, England

Children: 1. Robert RICH

2. Margery RICH 3. Nathaniel RICH

4. Anne RICH

5. Anne RICH

6. Jane RICH

Jane RICH

Born: 1600, St Giles Crplega, London, England Father: Richard RICH

Mother: Jane (Anne) MACHELL Married: Thomas GRIMSDITCH ABT 1620, St Giles Crplega, London, England

Children: 1. Robert GRIMSDITCH

2. Francis GRIMSDITCH

Anne RICH

Born: ABT 1603 Father: Richard RICH

Mother: Jane (Anne) MACHELL Married: Percy BROWNE 1621

Children: 1. Nathaniel BROWNE

2. Robert BROWNE

Robert RICH (2° B. Rich of Leez)

Born: ABT 1537

Died: 27 Feb 1581

Father: Richard RICH (1º B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth JENKINS

Married: Elizabeth BALDRY BEF 25 Nov 1554

Children:

1. Robert RICH (1° E. Warwick)

2. Richard RICH (Hon.)

3. Frances RICH

4. Thomas RICH

Thomas RICH

Born: 1568, Compton, England

Father: Robert RICH (2° B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth BALDRY

Married: Anne BOURCHIER Children:

1. Bridget RICH 2. Susan RICH

Bridget RICH

Born: 1596, North Cerney, England Died: Stowell, England

Father: Thomas RICH Mother: Anne BOURCHIER

Married: James HOWE 23 Jul 1620, Gloucestershire, England Children:

1. Abraham HOWE 2. John HOWE

3. Richard HOWE

4. John Grubham HOWE

5. Susannah HOWE

Susan RICH

Born: 1615, Gloucester, England Father: Thomas RICH

Mother: Anne BOURCHIER Married 1: Thomas COOKE

Married 2: Edward BATHURST 1644 Children:

1. Lancelot BATHURST 2. Mary Jane BATHURST

3. Annabella BATHURST 4. Robert BATHURST

Married 3: Richard JORDAN 18 Sep 1674

Frances RICH

Notes: Essex Sessions Rolls, vol. XVII: Layer Marney, 23 Jul 1598. Frances, dau, of Sir Robert Rich, Lord Rich of Leez, and wife of Thomas Cammock, her children and servants were prevented from entering their pews at church by parishioners who assaulted them and locked the pews. (abstracted by English researchers Brian Higgins and Mary Gregg)

Father: Robert RICH (2° B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth BALDRY

Married: Thomas CAMMOCK

Children:

1. Martha CAMMOCK

2. Sussex CAMMOCK

3. Thomas CAMMOCK

Richard RICH (Hon.)

Died: 27 Feb 1580

Father: Robert RICH (2° B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth BALDRY

Married: Catherine KNYVETT (C. Suffolk)

Robert RICH (1° E. Warwick)

Born: ABT 1562

Acceded: 1618

Died: 24 Mar 1618, Felsted, Essex, England

Notes: See his Biography.

Father: Robert RICH (2° B. Rich of Leez)

Mother: Elizabeth BALDRY

Married: Penelope DEVEREUX (B. Rich) 1581 DIVORCED 15 Nov 1605

Children:

1. Robert RICH (2° E. Warwick)

2. Henry RICH (1º E. Holland)

3. Charles RICH (d. 1627)

4. Lettice (Lucy) RICH

5. Penelope RICH

6. Essex RICH

7. Isabel RICH

Married 2: Frances WRAY (C. Warwick) (dau. of Christopher Wray and Anne Girlington)

Lettice (Lucy) RICH

Died: AFT 1619

Notes: she married Sir George Cary of Cockington, Devon and then Sir Arthur Lake, and haddied by Jun 1619. Lady Cary is also called Lucy Rich.

Father: Robert RICH (1° E. Warwick)

Mother: Penelope DEVEREUX (B. Rich)

Married 1: George CAREY (Sir)

Married 2: Arthur LAKE (Sir)

Penelope RICH

Father: Robert RICH (1° E. Warwick)

Mother: Penelope DEVEREUX (B. Rich)

Married: Gervase CLIFTON

Essex RICH

Father: Robert RICH (1° E. Warwick)

Mother: Penelope DEVEREUX (B. Rich)

Married 1: Daniel FINCH

Children:

1. Mary FINCH

Married 2: Thomas CHEEKE

Children:

2. Anne CHEEKE

3. Essex CHEEKE (m. Edward Montague, 2° E. Manchester)

Isabel RICH

Notes: married twice (no names known); her portrait by Mytens, belonging to the Earl of Suffolk, is said to resemble her mother

Father: Robert RICH (1° E. Warwick)

Mother: Penelope DEVEREUX (B. Rich)

Married 1: Richard ROGERS

Married 2: John SMYTHE (Sir)

Robert RICH (2° E. Warwick)

Born: Jun 1587

Died: 19 Apr 1658, Felsted, Essex

Notes: See his Biography.

Father: Robert RICH (1° E. Warwick)

Mother: Penelope DEVEREUX (B. Rich)

Married 1: Frances HATTON (b. Jul 1590 - d. BEF 21 Nov 1623) (dau. of William Hatton and Elizabeth Gawdy) 12 Feb 1604/5

Children:

1. Anne RICH

2. Robert RICH of Leighs (b. 1611 - d. 1659)

3. Charles RICH (b. 1619 - d. 1673)

4. Essex RICH

5. Son RICH

6. Son RICH

7. Dau. RICH

Married 2: Eleanor WORTLEY (C. Sussex) (d. 1666) (dau. of Richard Wortley) (w.1 of Henry Lee - w.2 of Edward Radcliffe, 6º E. Sussex - m.4 Edward Montague, 2° E. Manchester) 30 Mar 1646, Hornsey, Middlesex

Children:

8. Charles RICH

9. Hatton RICH

10. Henry RICH

11. Lucy RICH

12. Frances RICH

13. Anne RICH

Anne RICH

Born: 1604

Died: 14 Feb 1642, Kimbolton, Hunts, England

Father: Robert RICH (2° E. Warwick)

Mother: Frances HATTON

Married: Edward MONTAGUE (2° E. Manchester)

Children:

1. Robert MONTAGUE (3º E. Manchester)

2. Frances MONTAGUE

3. Anne MONTAGUE

Henry RICH (1° E. Holland)

Born: ABT 1590

Died: 1648/9

Notes: See his Biography.

Father: Robert RICH (1° E. Warwick)

Mother: Penelope DEVEREUX (B. Rich)

Married: Isabel COPE ABT 1616

Children:

1. Frances RICH (B. Paget of Beaudasert)

2. Robert RICH (5º E. Warwick)

3. Susan RICH (C. Suffolk)

4. Isabel RICH

5. Mary RICH

Robert RICH (5º E. Warwick)

Born: ABT 1619, Kensington, London, Middlesex, England

Died: 16 Apr 1675

Father: Henry RICH (1º E. Holland)

Mother: Isabel COPE

Married 1: Anne MONTAGUE

Married 2: Elizabeth INGRAM (dau. of Arthur Ingram and Eleanor Slingsby)

Frances RICH (B. Paget of Beaudasert)

Died: 1672

Buried: 12 Nov 1672, West Drayton

Father: Henry RICH (1º E. Holland)

Mother: Isabel COPE

Married: William PAGET (5° B. Paget of Beaudasert) 28 Jun 1632, Kensington, London, Middlesex, England

Children:

1. William PAGET (6° B. Paget of Beaudasert)

2. Henry PAGET

Susan RICH (C. Suffolk)

Born: ABT 1627

Died: 19 May 1649, Kensington, London, Middlesex, England

Buried: Walden, Essex, England

Father: Henry RICH (1º E. Holland)

Mother: Isabel COPE

Married: James HOWARD (3º E. Suffolk) 1 Dec 1640, Kensington, London, Middlesex, England

Children:

1. Son HOWARD

2. Essex HOWARD

3. George HOWARD

4. Henry HOWARD

5. James HOWARD

RICHARD RICH'S DAUGHTER BY MISTRESS WAS:

'''Alice RICH'''

Born: ABT 1545, South Petherton, Somerset, England

Died: 22 Aug 1596, South Petherton, Somerset, England

Buried: 22 Aug 1596, South Petherton, Somerset, England

Married: Robert WHITE 1557, South Petherton, Somerset, England

Children:

1. Robert WHITE

2. Richard WHITE

3. John WHITE

4. Richard WHITE

__________________________

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Sir Richard Rich, Lord Chancellor of England's Timeline

1496
1496
London, Middlesex, England, (Present UK)
1496
St Lawrence Jewr, Middlesex, England, Great Britain
1528
December 1528
- present
Age 32
1529
February 1529
- present
Age 33
November 1529
- 1536
Age 33
1529
Age 33
England
1529
- present
Age 33
1530
1530
Age 34
London, Midldesex, England
1532
March 1532
- present
Age 36
May 13, 1532
- present
Age 36