TUFTON, Nicholas (1578-1631), of Hothfield, Kent.

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

bap. 19 Jan. 1578, 1st s. of Sir John Tufton of Hothfield by his 2nd w. Christian, da. and coh. of Sir Humphrey Browne of Ridley Hall, Terling, Essex. educ. Hart Hall, Oxf. 1591; L. Inn 1596. m. bef. 3 Sept. 1602, Frances, da. of Thomas Cecil, 3s. 7da. Kntd. 1603; suc. fa. 1624; cr. Baron Tufton 1626, Earl of Thanet 1628.

Offices Held

J.p. Kent temp. James I, dep. lt. 1611.


Tufton’s connexion with the Cecils antedated his marriage into the family: a Tufton, probably Nicholas himself, accompanied Robert Cecil on his mission to France in 1598, and very likely it was Cecil who brought Tufton into Parliament for Peterborough in 1601. One or two letters from Tufton and his wife to Robert Cecil in subsequent years suggest that they may also have owed him some more material advancement. Tufton represented his own county in the Stuart period, his opponent at the election accusing him of holding Catholic views. His wife’s high church sympathies led her to pay for the erection of an altar in Rainham church, Kent, during the period of Laudian influence. There is no evidence that Tufton’s personal beliefs were other than moderate.

Tufton, now Earl of Thanet, died 1 July 1631.

CP; Vis. Kent (Harl. Soc. xlii), 119; CSP Dom. 1598-1601, p. 30; 1619-23, pp. 509, 609; HMC Hatfield, xii. 344; xviii. 307; Arch. Cant. xliii. 276; PCC 119 St. John.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: S. M. Thorpe