MAPLESDEN, Edward (by 1558-1626), of Maidstone, Kent

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

b. by 1558,1 2nd s. of Gervase Maplesden (d.1585) and Susan, da. of Thomas Partrich of Lenham, Kent. m. 26 Nov. 1582, Dorothy, da. of William Curteis of Tenterden, Kent, 5s. (?3 d.v.p.) 9da. (?3 d.v.p.).2 d. 4 or 8 Aug. 1626.3 sig. Edward Maplisden.

Offices Held

Freeman, Maidstone 1579,4 jurat by 1585-d., chamberlain (jt.) 1585-7, 1603,5 mayor 1587-9, 1603-5, 1616-17.6

?Groom of the stables by 1588-at least 1590.7


Descended from a long-established Kentish family, Maplesden should be distinguished from various namesakes, including a clothier of Marden, Kent, who died in 1639,8 and a cousin living in Maidstone in 1598-9.9 His father was a jurat of Maidstone, who served as one of the town’s chamberlains in 1575-6 and as mayor in 1579;10 his cousin George Maplesden (d.1596) was mayor between 1592 and 1594.11 Another cousin, also called George Maplesden (d.1591), was a Rochester alderman, who left Maplesden his best gelding and a bullet-proof cuirass, 12 suggesting that Maplesden may been the groom of the queen’s stables named Edward ‘Mapsden’ or ‘Mapstone’.

On his father’s death in the spring of 1585, Maplesden inherited an unspecified number of tenements in Maidstone.13 Appointed one of the town’s chamberlains six months later, he subsequently served twice as mayor. He may have been a brewer, for at his death he owned a malt house and an inn called the Sign of the George, both in Maidstone.14 He was probably the ‘Maplesden of Maidstone’ employed on 9 Sept. 1601 by Sir Francis Fane* to discover whether Sir John Scott* intended to stand against Fane as knight of the shire; certainly he voted for Fane at the county election 12 days later.15 In 1622 or 1623 Maplesden paid £6 for a piece of land he had previously been renting from Maidstone’s corporation.16 He was returned to Parliament for the borough in May 1625 by the then mayor, Ambrose Beale, who was anxious to prevent the re-election of Sir Francis Barnham, but he received no mention in its records.17

Maplesden drew up his will on 10 Dec. 1625, by which time he had already passed much of his estate to his eldest son, Gervase. Indeed, the latter later told the commissioners for knighthood fines that the lands he had inherited on his father’s death were worth only £20 per annum.18 Apart from the malt house and inn, Maplesden’s assets included at least two messuages, a tenement, a barn and some pasture, all in Maidstone, plus a small amount of land in nearby Marden. He also bequeathed £300 in cash to his youngest son Peter, which he had raised by selling some marshland, and £40 to a niece. Less than £10 was reserved for charitable purposes, of which half was assigned to the chamberlains of Maidstone for the poor.19 According to Gervase, Maplesden died on 4 Aug. 1626, but his inquisition post mortem states that he died four days later. He was probably buried in the church of All Saints, Maidstone. No other member of his family subsequently sat in Parliament.

Ref Volumes: 1604-1629

Author: Andrew Thrush


  • 1. Date of birth calculated from date of admiss. as freeman of Maidstone.
  • 2. Vis. Kent (Harl. Soc. xlii), 156-7; Mar. Regs. of All Saints, Maidstone comp. J. Cave-Brown, 19; IGI.
  • 3. C142/747/136; SP16/180/25.
  • 4. Maidstone Recs. 17.
  • 5. Cent. Kent. Stud. Md/FCa1/1586-7, 1603.
  • 6. Ibid. 1588; Maidstone Recs. 10, 17, 30-1, 59, 72, 272-3.
  • 7. E101/107/33; 115/275/76.
  • 8. For this man, see C142/575/144; C2/Jas.I/M3/2; 2/Chas.I/M79/178; 2/Chas.I/M83/163; 2/Chas.I/E115/275/68; PROB 11/77, f. 16.
  • 9. E179/127/535 records two Maidstone residents called Edward Maplesden.
  • 10. Cent. Kent. Stud. Md/FCa1/1576/1; Maidstone Recs. 17.
  • 11. Cent. Kent. Stud. Md/FCa1/1593-4; IHR, ‘Kentish wills, 1450-1602’, unpublished abstracts, p. 239.
  • 12. PROB 11/77, f. 16.
  • 13. Cent. Kent. Stud. PRC32/35, f. 167v.
  • 14. Cent. Kent. Stud. PRC32/48, f. 7r-v.
  • 15. Staffs. RO, D593/S/4/60/10; Add. 34828, f. 15.
  • 16. Cent. Kent. Stud. Md/FCa1/1621-2; 1622-3, f. 2.
  • 17. W. Roberts James, Charters of Maidstone, 119; Surr. Hist. Cent. LM cor. 4/51.
  • 18. SP16/180/25. Gervase was nevertheless compelled to pay £12 to the commrs.: E178/5368.
  • 19. Cent. Kent. Stud. PRC32/48, ff. 5v-8; C142/747/136.