KYNNE, John (d.1573), of King's Lynn and Gaywood, Norf.

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

?rel. to merchant fam. of Kynne of Althorne, Essex. m. (1) Margaret; (2) Anne, ?wid. of one Barbor, prob. 1s.

Offices Held

?Freeman, King’s Lynn c.1545, mayor 1562-3, 1572-d.


This man was a merchant and shipowner of King’s Lynn, a member of the corporation for over ten years. He was living in the parish of St. James by 1552, when he signed the inventory for church goods there. He was presumably already an alderman when he and another townsman were chosen in July 1562 to see the Duke of Norfolk about the musters. In addition to property at Gaywood, a mile outside Lynn, he owned at least one large house in the town itself, and paid the borough authorities 4s. a year for ‘the fresh water coming into his house in Tuesday market’.

Between 1562 and his death Kynne was often employed on town business, on several occasions travelling to see the Duke of Norfolk and his comptroller, Sir Nicholas Lestrange*, about a dispute between Lestrange and the borough, or asking for the Duke’s help in other town affairs. In July 1568 he went to London with instructions to interview Norfolk and the Earl of Leicester and persuade them to further the town’s suit against a certain Thomas Johns or Jones over a licence for grain export. In the following summer he accompanied the mayor and another leading townsman on a deputation to the Privy Council, this time to oppose the petition of Sir Valentine Browne to have ‘liberty for the utterance of coals at his pleasure’.

Nothing is known of Kynne in Parliament. In August 1571 the borough paid him £7 16s. ‘for his fee and other charges of his burgess-ship’.

He died during his second mayoralty, between 15 Jan. 1573, when he made his will, and 7 Aug. He set aside £600 for his only son John at his coming of age or marriage, and asked the borough authorities to administer the money in the meantime, allowing his widow £38 a year for John’s maintenance. If the boy should die unmarried and a minor, £100 of this sum was to go to the King’s Lynn almshouses, £200 to set the local poor on work, and £300 to be lent at interest to the ‘sciences, mysteries’ and trading companies. The widow, the sole executrix, was bequeathed the Gaywood and King’s Lynn property, with copyhold lands in ‘Myntlyne’. Reignold Wright, ‘master of my ship’, was to have 40s. in money, and the supervisor, Roger Barbor, ‘my wife’s son’, a gelding and a gold ring. Kynne asked to be buried in the church of St. Nicholas, King’s Lynn, next to the tomb of his former wife, Margaret.

At the end of March 1574 his widow brought to the town ‘congregation’ £300 of the sum which her husband had asked the borough to administer:

And the same ... is told, put in a bag, and the said bag by her sealed, and by her consent ... is laid up in the treasury house, and to her is delivered one of the keys ... in keeping until she hath assurance for the said money.

LP Hen. VIII, viii. p. 413; H. J. Hillen, King’s Lynn, i. 271; Lynn Freemen, 94; H. Harrod, King’s Lynn Recs. 144; King’s Lynn congregation bk. 1544-69, ff. 379, 380v, 381, 419v, 429v, 455v, 496, 497, 519v; 1569-91, ff. 64v, 84, 97; PCC 30 Peter.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: N. M. Fuidge