ELME, Sir John.
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Family and Education
Kntd. between Nov. 1389 and Jan. 1393.1
Only two facts can be attributed with any degree of certainty to the subject of this biography, whose career and background otherwise remain a matter of conjecture. In the autumn of 1388, Elme attended the Rutland parliamentary elections at Oakham castle, and agreed to stand surety for Walter Scarle, one of the shire knights then returned. The two men later sat together as colleagues in the Parliament of 1393, and may well have been fairly close friends. Our Member seems also to have been on good terms with another local landowner, Sir Oliver Mauleverer*, who named him as one of his mainpernors when, in November 1389, he became keeper of the estates of Sir John Basings.2 Elme is described at this time as living in Rutland, although he may originally have come from Nottinghamshire. It is certainly tempting to identify him with John Elme of Keyworth in that county, a demesne tenant of Sir Roger Bellers† (d.1380) and a royal tax collector there in both November 1386 and March 1388. A John Elme was pardoned his outlawry, in October 1391, for failing to appear in court when being sued for a debt of £5 by one John Wichford of Wiltshire, but again there is no means of telling if this reference is relevant.3 For want of further evidence we may perhaps assume that he died soon after 1394, the date of his second and last appearance in the House of Commons.