HYDE, Oliver (by 1520-66), of Abingdon, Berks.
Available from Boydell and Brewer
Family and Education
b. by 1520, 2nd s. of William Hyde of South Denchworth by Margery, da. of John Cater of Letcombe Regis; bro. of William†. educ. ?Abingdon g.s. m. (1) Anne (d.1541), wid. of Robert Delwood (d.1538/40) of Banbury Court, Abingdon, s.p.; (2) by 1544, Thomasin da. and coh. of Thomas Bradfield of Margaretting, Essex, wid. of William Daniell of London and John Kekewich (d. 31 Oct. 1541) of Catchfrench, Cornw. and Margaretting, s.p.2
Treasurer, guild of Our Lady and member, guild of the Holy Cross, Abingdon by 1548; constable 1548; principal burgess, c.1556, mayor 1561-2; gov. and dep. master, Christ’s Hospital 1553-d., collector 1554, 1563, treasurer 1554.3
A younger son in a large family, Oliver Hyde established himself during his father’s lifetime by successively marrying two rich widows. The first brought him the lease of Banbury Court in Abingdon, which he made his residence and later converted into freehold, and the second a fortune which enabled him to buy in 1545 the manor of Maiden Erlegh, near Sonning, Berkshire and other Berkshire lands. In 1548 he and his wife purchased the manor of Fulbrook, near Burford, Oxfordshire. Considerably Hyde’s senior, although she outlived him, this second wife was a woman of strong character, well able to defend her property in and out of the law-courts; her son George Kekewich had been born in 1530 and her elder daughter married Hyde’s younger brother.4
Hyde took no part in county administration but was active at Abingdon. The town had suffered heavily from the destruction of its abbey and the suppression of the guilds, but it had a powerful friend at court in Sir John Mason. Plans were laid for reviving the secular functions of the guild of the Holy Cross, in which Hyde took a leading part, and on 18 May 1553 royal letters announced the establishment of the present Christ’s Hospital. Mason was named master for life, with 11 governors, also for life, headed by Roger Amyce and Oliver Hyde. Amyce was later to claim the credit for the foundation, but neither he nor Mason resided in the town, while eight of the other governors were only tradesmen. It was natural that the chief responsibility should fall upon Hyde and this was recognized when Mason appointed him his deputy. Mason was probably also responsible for procuring the charter of 1556 by which Abingdon joined Monmouth and two other Marian creations, Banbury and Higham Ferrers, as England’s only single-Member constituencies and he doubtless supported Hyde’s election to Mary’s last Parliament. He was returned again in 1563 but died on 9 Feb. 1566, between the first and second sessions of the Parliament.5
Ref Volumes: 1509-1558
Author: T. F.T. Baker
- 1. Did not serve for the full duration of the Parliament.
- 2. Date of birth estimated from marriage. Vis. Berks. (Harl. Soc. lvi), 35; A. E. Preston and A. C. Baker, Historic Abingdon, 59-75 passim; PCC 11 Alenger; LP Hen. VIII, xix.
- 3. Preston and Baker, passim; CPR, 1553, p. 142.
- 4. Preston and Baker, 64-66; PCC 34 Alenger, 11 Crymes; Morant, Essex, ii. 74; LP Hen. VIII, iii, xix; VCH Berks. iii. 217; iv. 544; CPR, 1547-8, p. 327; C1/1166/57; Req.2/16/47, 18/160.
- 5. Preston and Baker, 67-68, 72; CPR, 1553, p. 142; A. C. Baker, Historic Abingdon, Parl. Hist. 5-7; Abingdon Recs. ed. Challenor, 1-36; E150/823/4.