BEALE, Francis (1577-at least 1637), of Barnes, Surr.; later of Newport, I.o.W

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1604-1629, ed. Andrew Thrush and John P. Ferris, 2010
Available from Cambridge University Press



Family and Education

bap. 26 Dec. 1577,1 1st s. of Robert Beale† of Barnes, clerk of the PC 1372-93, 1597-1601, and Edith, da. of Henry St. Barbe of Ashington, Som.2 educ. G. Inn, entered 1591.3 m. 8 Jan. 1602,4 Joan, da. of Thomas Knaresborough, yeoman, of Wandsworth, Surr., s.p.5 suc. fa. 1601.6 d. aft. 1637.

Offices Held

Asst. Mines Royal 1605.7

Freeman, Newport I.o.W. 1623,8 Yarmouth I.o.W. 1625;9 capt. militia ft. Hants by 1637.10


Beale’s family originated in Woodbridge, Suffolk.11 His father, Robert Beale, a puritan exile during Mary’s reign, was promoted to clerk of the Privy Council under Elizabeth, and sat in five parliaments. He resided near his kinsman Sir Francis Walsingham’s estate of Barn Elms in Surrey, and also acquired the manor of Frensham and property further afield.12 After his father’s death, Beale, the eldest of two sons, sold the Warwickshire manor of Priors Marston for £1,700, perhaps in order to help support his numerous sisters.13 His father’s former involvement in the Company of Mines Royal accounts for Beale’s appointment as an assistant in 1605.14

Beale was returned for Northampton in 1614 with the help of his brother-in-law, solicitor-general (Sir) Henry Yelverton*, the town’s recorder, with the stipulation that he must be sworn a freeman, and pay his own charges.15 He left no trace on the records of the Addled Parliament. Unhappily married, in 1617 he was sentenced by High Commission to allow his wife £30 annually as alimony, though this was subsequently reduced to £10 by the Yelvertons upon proof of her misconduct.16 He moved to the Isle of Wight in about 1620. Honoured by Newport with the freedom of the borough, he was soon on convivial terms with the corporation, whom he persuaded to elect his nephew Sir Christopher Yelverton* to the Parliaments of 1626 and 1628, on the latter occasion in defiance of the wishes of the governor, the 1st Viscount Conway (Sir Edward Conway I*).17 He is last heard of as a Hampshire militia officer in the Portsdown regiment in 1637.18

Ref Volumes: 1604-1629

Authors: Virginia C.D. Moseley / Rosemary Sgroi


  • 1. Allhallows London Wall Par. Reg. ed. R. Hovenden, 10.
  • 2. R.C. Hoare, Hist. Mod. Wilts. v. 10; Vis. Suff. ed. Metcalfe, 184.
  • 3. GI Admiss.
  • 4. Mortlake Par. Reg. ed. M.S. Cockin and D. Gould (Barnes Hist. Soc.), 36.
  • 5. Vis. Surr. (Harl. Soc. xliii), 78-9; Surr. Arch. Colls. xxxiii. 21.
  • 6. C142/269/34.
  • 7. Select Charters of Trading Cos. ed. C.T. Carr (Selden Soc. xxviii), 15.
  • 8. I.o.W. RO, NBC 45/2, f. 196v.
  • 9. Add. 5669, f. 88.
  • 10. Add. 21922, f. 201.
  • 11. Add. 19117, ff. 227-31v.
  • 12. VCH Surr. ii. 610.
  • 13. M.E. Finch, Wealth of Five Northants. Fams. (Northants. Rec. Soc. xix), 176.
  • 14. Oxford DNB sub Robert Beale.
  • 15. Northampton Bor. Recs. ed. J.C. Cox, ii. 495.
  • 16. Glos. RO, D547a/L12.
  • 17. L. Boynton, ‘Billeting: the example of the Isle of Wight’, EHR, lxxiv. 29.
  • 18. Add. 21922, f. 201.