BLUNDESTONE, Lawrence (d.1588), of Gray's Inn, London and of Farnsfield, and Hexgreave Park Houghton, Notts.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1558-1603, ed. P.W. Hasler, 1981
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

1st s. of Nicholas Blundestone of Houghton by Alice or Anne, da. and h. of Lawrence Maxey of Houghton. educ. Christ’s, Camb. May 1554; G. Inn 1561, called 1563. m. Anne, da. of Henry Needham of Kirtlington, Oxon., 7s. 3da.

Offices Held

Pensioner, G. Inn 1580, reader 1582; commr. to survey forts and castles in west marches 1580-1; legal member of council in the north Nov. 1582; j.p.q. Cumb., Northumb., Westmld., Yorks. (all ridings) by 1583, Notts. c.1584.


Blundestone’s call to the bar so soon after his admission to Gray’s Inn suggests earlier study of the law, possibly at Staple Inn with his friend Barnaby Googe, who was certainly with him at Christ’s, Cambridge. When Googe went abroad in 1561 he left the manuscript of his Eclogues with Blundestone, later claiming that Blundestone had the work published without consent. Blundestone had no connexion with Portsmouth, but by 1571 he was presumably well established in legal practice. His appointment at York carried an annual salary of £100, quite sufficient, with perquisites, for him to have bought land if he had wished to do so. But he remained preeminently a lawyer. Though he had property in Nottinghamshire, some of it held from the archbishop of York, he probably spent little time there. He may indeed have sold part of the land he inherited at Houghton, since it does not appear in the inquisition taken after his death, which occurred at the height of the Armada crisis, on 1 Aug. 1588. Administration was granted to his widow, their, eldest son Nicholas being nine months under age.

Harl. 1082, f. 49; 1400, f. 86; G. Inn Pens. Bk. i. 30, 42, 54; Cal. Border Pprs. i. 35; Lansd. 46, f. 134; 49, f. 194; Reid, Council of the North, 495; DNB (Googe, Barnabe); C142/218/17; PCC admon. act bk. 1588, f. 78.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: N. M. Fuidge