KYRLE, Thomas (d.1577), of Much Marcle, Herefs. and Malvern, Worcs.

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

4th s. of Thomas Kyrle of Walford, Herefs. by Joan, da. of Hugh Abrahall of Rudhall, near Ross-on-Wye. educ. G. Inn 1551, called 1555. m. Frances, da. and h. of John Knotsford of Malvern, 2s. 1da.

Offices Held

Lent reader, G. Inn 1571; steward of Longney and Bishop’s Cleeve, Glos.

J.p.q. Herefs. and Worcs. from c.1573.


Kyrle was presumably returned to Parliament in 1571 either through some legal connexion with the borough, the evidence for which has not survived, or more probably through the influence of his wife’s step-brother John, Lord Lumley, son-in-law of the 12th Earl of Arundel. Kyrle’s brother Walter married into the Warnecombe family and his brother Anthony into the Scudamores.

Kyrle was a lawyer and moneylender. The records of several undated Chancery cases initiated by him survive, in one of which he was acting as legal adviser in a complicated suit about land conveyance in Worcestershire. Another concerned a £6 debt which he claimed to have paid, but which his creditor’s executors were demanding from him. He claimed to have ‘casually lost’ the documents relating to a lease made by him and his wife of some of her property in Montgomeryshire, and to be unable to remember either the date of the lease or its duration. He therefore had to bring a case against the lessee, whom he suspected of having the evidences, and who was refusing to pay any rent.

In 1574 he purchased his main estate, the manor of Much Marcle. He also owned the manor of Moor Court and property in Walford, Herefordshire, together with lands in right of his wife in Worcestershire and Montgomeryshire. The bishop of Hereford recommended him to the Privy Council as ‘learned in the laws of the realm, meet to be made a justice of the peace, for his favour to the true religion’, and by 1574 he was on the commission for both Herefordshire and Worcestershire, but he was disappointed in his ambition to become a justice in Wales, being described in 1576 as ‘light headed, of small discretion ... very covetous ... ill of religion’, and a dealer for interest.

‘Thomas Kirle, son of Anthony Kirle of Herefordshire’ was murdered ‘about Allhallowtide’, 1577, by a lackey of William Vaughan. The 1571 Member had a brother Anthony, the ninth son of his father, but any child of his must have been very young at this date. If the MP is meant, the name of his father and the approximate time of the murder are wrongly stated. Kyrle the lawyer died 31 July 1577, having made his will on 26 July. It was proved on 15 Aug. The heir, his son John (afterwards sheriff of Herefordshire and a baronet), was only nine, and Kyrle appointed his brothers Richard and Anthony executors, along with Gabriel Goodman, dean of Westminster. They were to hold his lands in trust until John came of age, and either Richard or Anthony was if possible to buy the wardship. Kyrle’s daughter Lumley, presumably Lord Lumley’s godchild, was to receive £500 on coming of age or marrying and Kyrle left £20 to his mother and legacies to a number of other relatives, including his wife and the child ‘she supposeth herself to be with’. The overseers were Sir Walter Mildmay and John Knotsford, Kyrle’s father-in-law. The widow married Henry Willoughby.

CPR, 1549-51, p. 51; Burke, Commoners, iii. 615-16; J. Duncomb, Herefs. iii. 26, 29; G. Inn Pens. Bk. i. 6-7; HMC Hatfield, ii. 159; CP, viii. 276, 277; C3/105/31, 105/85, 108/31; HMC Var. iv. 130; C142/177/104A, B; Cam. Misc. ix(3), p. 14; Bull. Bd. of Celtic Studies, vi. 71; APC, x. 116; PCC 32 Daughtry.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: N. M. Fuidge