John de Ashton (military commander)

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Sir John de Ashton, or Assheton (c. 1354 – c. 1398), of Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire, was an English politician and military commander.

Ashton-under-Lyne market town in the Metropolitan Borough of Tameside, Greater Manchester, England

Ashton-under-Lyne is a market town in Tameside, Greater Manchester, England. The population was 45,198 at the 2011 census. Historically in Lancashire, it is on the north bank of the River Tame, in the foothills of the Pennines, 6.2 miles (10.0 km) east of Manchester.

Lancashire County of England

Lancashire is a ceremonial county in North West England. The administrative centre is Preston. The county has a population of 1,449,300 and an area of 1,189 square miles (3,080 km2). People from Lancashire are known as Lancastrians.

He was the son of Sir John Ashton (d. c. 1360), and followed his father into military service at a young age. In 1369 he fought in France under John of Gaunt, and in Ireland in 1373. He was knighted by 1377, when he was retained by John of Gaunt. [1]

John of Gaunt 14th-century English nobleman, royal duke, and politician

John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster was an English prince, military leader, and statesman. He was the third of the five sons of King Edward III of England who survived to adulthood. Due to his royal origin, advantageous marriages, and some generous land grants, Gaunt was one of the richest men of his era, and an influential figure during the reigns of both his father, Edward, and his nephew, Richard II. As Duke of Lancaster, he is the founder of the royal House of Lancaster, whose members would ascend to the throne after his death. His birthplace, Ghent, corrupted into English as Gaunt, was the origin for his name. When he became unpopular later in life, scurrilous rumours and lampoons circulated that he was actually the son of a Ghent butcher, perhaps because Edward III was not present at the birth. This story always drove him to fury.

Froissart's Chronicles records a Sir John Assueton who fought at the siege of Noyons in 1370, who was identified by the 19th-century Dictionary of National Biography with the subject of this article, but the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography views this as "suspect"; he would have been sixteen, and not yet knighted. [2]

Froissarts <i>Chronicles</i> chronicles by Jean Froissart

Froissart's Chronicles are a prose history of the Hundred Years' War written in the 14th century by Jean Froissart. The Chronicles open with the events leading up to the deposition of Edward II in 1326, and cover the period up to 1400, recounting events in western Europe, mainly in England, France, Scotland, the Low Countries and the Iberian Peninsula, although at times also mentioning other countries and regions such as Italy, Germany, Ireland, the Balkans, Cyprus, Turkey and North Africa.

Ashton was elected as a Member (MP) of the Parliament of England for Lancashire in October 1382, with Gaunt's support. He joined Despenser's Crusade in Flanders in 1383, and campaigned in Scotland in 1385; however, he did not accompany Gaunt on his Spanish campaign in 1386. [1]

Parliament of England historic legislature of the Kingdom of England

The Parliament of England was the legislature of the Kingdom of England, existing from the early 13th century until 1707, when it merged with the Parliament of Scotland to become the Parliament of Great Britain after the political union of England and Scotland created the Kingdom of Great Britain.

Lancashire was a county constituency of the House of Commons of the Parliament of England from 1290, then of the Parliament of Great Britain from 1707 to 1800, and of the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1801 to 1832. It was represented by two Members of Parliament, traditionally known as Knights of the Shire until 1832.

Despensers Crusade

Despenser's Crusade was a military expedition led by Henry le Despenser in 1383 that aimed to assist the city of Ghent in its struggle against the supporters of Antipope Clement VII. It took place during the great Papal schism and the Hundred Years' War between England and France. While France supported Clement, whose court was based in Avignon, the English supported Pope Urban VI in Rome.

Ashton returned to Parliament in September 1388, and again in January 1390, though not much is known about his activity at them. His eldest son, John de Ashton, was MP for Lancashire in 1411, 1413 and 1416, as well as seneschal of Bayeux in 1417-18. [3]

John de Ashton (seneschal) English politician

Sir John de Ashton or Sir John Assheton, was an MP and soldier under King Henry IV and King Henry V.


  1. 1 2 Rawcliffe, Ayton; Ayton, Andrew. "Ashton, Sir John (c. 1354–c. 1398), soldier and landowner". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/772.(Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  2. ODNB; for the original note, see Wikisource-logo.svg  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain : Axon, William Edward Armytage (1885). "Ashton, John de (fl.1370)". In Stephen, Leslie. Dictionary of National Biography . 2. London: Smith, Elder & Co. p. 177.
  3. "ASSHETON, Sir John I (c.1354-c.1398), of Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancs. - History of Parliament Online".

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