James Tyrrell (writer)

Last updated

James Tyrrell (5 May 1642 17 June 1718) was an English author, Whig political philosopher, and historian. [1]

English people Nation and ethnic group native to England

The English people are a nation and an ethnic group native to England who speak the English language. The English identity is of early medieval origin, when they were known in Old English as the Angelcynn. Their ethnonym is derived from the Angles, one of the Germanic peoples who migrated to Great Britain around the 5th century AD. England is one of the countries of the United Kingdom, and the majority of people living there are British citizens.



James Tyrrell was born in London, the eldest son of Sir Timothy Tyrrell and Elizabeth Tyrrell (née Ussher), the only daughter of Archbishop James Ussher. His younger sister Eleanor married the deist Charles Blount. [2] He lived in Oakley, Buckinghamshire. He was married to Mary Hutchinson (1645-1687), daughter of Sir Michael Hutchinson of Fladbury, Worcestershire. They had at least three children, including James Tyrrell and Mary and another son.

London Capital of the United Kingdom

London is the capital of and largest city in England and the United Kingdom, with the largest municipal population in the European Union. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile (80 km) estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans. The City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles (2.9 km2) and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow closely its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is also an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.

Sir Timothy Tyrrell (1617–1701), initially of Oakley, Buckinghamshire and later of Shotover, was Master of the Buckhounds to King Charles I.

James Ussher 17th-century Anglican Archbishop of Armagh

James Ussher was the Church of Ireland Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland between 1625 and 1656. He was a prolific scholar and church leader, who today is most famous for his identification of the genuine letters of the church father, Ignatius, and for his chronology that sought to establish the time and date of the creation as "the entrance of the night preceding the 23rd day of October... the year before Christ 4004"; that is, around 6 pm on 22 October 4004 BC according to the proleptic Julian calendar.

Educated at The Queens College, Oxford (MA, 1663), he became a barrister in 1666 and a justice of the peace in Buckinghamshire. He was deprived of this office by James II for failing to support the Declaration of Indulgence. [1] At the time of the Peace of Rijswijk (1697), he was persuaded back into public service by Thomas Herbert, 8th Earl of Pembroke (Lord Pembroke) to become Commissioner of the Privy Seal.

Justice of the peace Judicial officer elected or appointed to keep the peace and do minor civic jobs

A justice of the peace (JP) is a judicial officer of a lower or puisne court, elected or appointed by means of a commission to keep the peace. In past centuries the term commissioner of the peace was often used with the same meaning. Depending on the jurisdiction, such justices dispense summary justice or merely deal with local administrative applications in common law jurisdictions. Justices of the peace are appointed or elected from the citizens of the jurisdiction in which they serve, and are usually not required to have any formal legal education in order to qualify for the office. Some jurisdictions have varying forms of training for JPs.

Buckinghamshire County of England

Buckinghamshire, abbreviated Bucks, is a ceremonial county in South East England which borders Greater London to the south east, Berkshire to the south, Oxfordshire to the west, Northamptonshire to the north, Bedfordshire to the north east and Hertfordshire to the east.

James II of England 17th-century King of England and Ireland, and of Scotland (as James VII)

James II and VII was King of England and Ireland as James II and King of Scotland as James VII, from 6 February 1685 until he was deposed in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. The last Roman Catholic monarch of England, Scotland and Ireland, his reign is now remembered primarily for struggles over religious tolerance. However, it also involved the principles of absolutism and divine right of kings and his deposition ended a century of political and civil strife by confirming the primacy of Parliament over the Crown.

Tyrrell was a friend and supporter of John Locke, who stayed at Tyrrell's home during a period when he was apparently working on his Two Treatises on Government . Tyrrell's thinking appears to have been influential in the development of Locke's, and for a time his writings were more influential than Locke's in the emergence of Whig thinking and policies.

John Locke English philosopher and physician

John Locke was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers and commonly known as the "Father of Liberalism". Considered one of the first of the British empiricists, following the tradition of Sir Francis Bacon, he is equally important to social contract theory. His work greatly affected the development of epistemology and political philosophy. His writings influenced Voltaire and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, many Scottish Enlightenment thinkers, as well as the American revolutionaries. His contributions to classical republicanism and liberal theory are reflected in the United States Declaration of Independence.

He spent his later years in Shotover, near Oxford and began building Shotover Park there, where he died on 17 June 1718, [1] though he is buried in the church in Oakley.

Shotover hill in the United Kingdom

Shotover is a hill and forest in Oxfordshire, England.

Shotover Park

Shotover Park is an 18th-century country house and park in Wheatley, Oxfordshire, England. The house, garden and park are Grade I-listed with English Heritage, and 18 additional structures on the property are also listed. The house is privately owned; the surrounding parkland is open to the public as Shotover Country Park.

According to a memorial to him, "He was a man of rare integrity, gravity, and wisdom: had never polished himself out of his sincerity: nor refined his behaviour to the prejudice of his virtue. He was a warm and zealous lover of his country, & of that system of religion and law which he well knew could only support it."


His Patriarcha non monarcha (1681) was a reply to Robert Filmer's Patriarcha; it also included references to Thomas Hobbes, and was also influenced by Samuel Pufendorf. [3] A Brief Disquisition of the Law of Nature was an English abridgment of Richard Cumberland's De legibus naturae. Bibliothetica politica was a huge compendium of Whig constitutional theory. [3]

Sir Robert Filmer was an English political theorist who defended the divine right of kings. His best known work, Patriarcha, published posthumously in 1680, was the target of numerous Whig attempts at rebuttal, including Algernon Sidney's Discourses Concerning Government, James Tyrrell's Patriarcha Non Monarcha and John Locke's Two Treatises of Government. Filmer also wrote critiques of Thomas Hobbes, John Milton, Hugo Grotius and Aristotle.

Thomas Hobbes 17th-century English philosopher

Thomas Hobbes, in some older texts Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury, was an English philosopher, considered to be one of the founders of modern political philosophy. Hobbes is best known for his 1651 book Leviathan, which expounded an influential formulation of social contract theory. In addition to political philosophy, Hobbes also contributed to a diverse array of other fields, including history, jurisprudence, geometry, the physics of gases, theology, ethics, and general philosophy.

Richard Cumberland (philosopher) English philosopher, and Bishop of Peterborough (1631–1718)

Richard Cumberland was an English philosopher, and Bishop of Peterborough from 1691. In 1672, he published his major work, De legibus naturae, propounding utilitarianism and opposing the egoistic ethics of Thomas Hobbes.

Related Research Articles

Francis Hutchinson was a British minister in Bury St Edmunds when he wrote a famous book debunking witchcraft prosecutions and subsequently was made Bishop of Down and Connor in Ireland.

The state of nature is a concept used in moral and political philosophy, religion, social contract theories and international law to denote the hypothetical conditions of what the lives of people might have been like before societies came into existence. Philosophers of the state of nature theory deduce that there must have been a time before organized societies existed, and this presumption thus raises questions such as: "What was life like before civil society?"; "How did government first emerge from such a starting position?," and; "What are the hypothetical reasons for entering a state of society by establishing a nation-state?".

Oakley, Buckinghamshire village in Buckinghamshire, England

Oakley is a village and civil parish in Aylesbury Vale district in Buckinghamshire, England. It has an area of 2,206 acres (893 ha) and includes about 400 households. The 2011 Census recorded the population as 1,007.

<i>Two Treatises of Government</i> work of political philosophy by John Locke

Two Treatises of Government is a work of political philosophy published anonymously in 1689 by John Locke. The First Treatise attacks patriarchalism in the form of sentence-by-sentence refutation of Robert Filmer's Patriarcha, while the Second Treatise outlines Locke's ideas for a more civilized society based on natural rights and contract theory.

<i>A Letter Concerning Toleration</i> book by John Locke

A Letter Concerning Toleration by John Locke was originally published in 1689. Its initial publication was in Latin, though it was immediately translated into other languages. Locke's work appeared amidst a fear that Catholicism might be taking over England, and responds to the problem of religion and government by proposing religious toleration as the answer. This "letter" is addressed to an anonymous "Honored Sir": this was actually Locke's close friend Philipp van Limborch, who published it without Locke's knowledge.

Whiggism is a political philosophy that grew out of the Parliamentarian faction in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms (1639–1651). The Whigs' key policy positions were the supremacy of Parliament, as opposed to that of the king, tolerance of Protestant dissenters and opposition to a "Papist" on the throne, especially James II or one of his descendants.

William Molyneux Irish natural philosopher and writer on politics

William MolyneuxFRS was an Irish writer on science, politics and natural philosophy.

Thomas Long (1621–1707) was an English clergyman and writer on Church politics. He spent almost all of his life in Exeter.

John Garvey (1527–1595) was an Irish Protestant Bishop of Kilmore and Archbishop of Armagh.

Resistance theory is an aspect of political thought, discussing the basis on which constituted authority may be resisted, by individuals or groups. In the European context it came to prominence as a consequence of the religious divisions in the early modern period that followed the Protestant Reformation. Resistance theories could justify disobedience on religious grounds to monarchs, and were significant in European national politics and international relations in the century leading up to the Peace of Westphalia of 1648. They can also underpin and justify the concept of revolution as now understood. Resistance theory of the early modern period can be considered to predate the formulations of natural and legal rights of citizens, and to co-exist with considerations of natural law.

Tyrrell or Tyrell is an Anglo-Irish surname.

Lieutenant-General James Tyrrell of Shotover, Oxfordshire, was a British Army officer and Whig politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1722 to 1742.

Mark Goldie, FRHS is an English historian and Professor of Intellectual History at Churchill College, Cambridge. He has written on the English political theorist John Locke and is a member of the Early Modern History and Political Thought and Intellectual History subject groups at the Faculty of History in Cambridge.

Sir Timothy Tyrrell was an Englishman who served as Master of the Buckhounds to Henry Frederick, Prince of Wales and King Charles I.


  1. 1 2 3 Goldie, Mark (2004). "Tyrrell, James (1642–1718)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
  2. Ford, Alan. "Ussher, James". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/28034.(Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  3. 1 2 The Cambridge History of Eighteenth-Century Political Thought, ed. Mark Goldie and Robert Wokler, Cambridge University Press, 2006, p. 781