Thomas Strickland (cavalier)

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Sir Thomas Strickland PC (baptised 16 November 1621 – 8 January 1694) was an English politician and soldier. He supported the Royalist cause in the English Civil War, being knighted for his gallantry at the Battle of Edgehill. [1]

Privy Council of the United Kingdom Formal body of advisers to the sovereign in the United Kingdom

Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council, usually known simply as the Privy Council of the United Kingdom or just the Privy Council, is a formal body of advisers to the Sovereign of the United Kingdom. Its membership mainly comprises senior politicians, who are current or former members of either the House of Commons or the House of Lords.

English Civil War series of armed conflicts and political machinations between Parliamentarians and Royalists

The English Civil War (1642–1651) was a series of armed conflicts and political machinations between Parliamentarians ("Roundheads") and Royalists ("Cavaliers") over, principally, the manner of England's governance. The first (1642–1646) and second (1648–1649) wars pitted the supporters of King Charles I against the supporters of the Long Parliament, while the third (1649–1651) saw fighting between supporters of King Charles II and supporters of the Rump Parliament. The war ended with the Parliamentarian victory at the Battle of Worcester on 3 September 1651.

Battle of Edgehill 1642 battle during the English Civil War

The Battle of Edgehill was a pitched battle of the First English Civil War. It was fought near Edge Hill and Kineton in southern Warwickshire on Sunday, 23 October 1642.


After the Restoration, he was a member of Parliament for Westmorland (1661–77), as well as attending the courts of Charles II and later James II. After the Glorious Revolution of 1688, he accompanied James II when the latter left for France. He died in Rouen six years later. [1] [2]

Westmorland was a constituency covering the county of Westmorland in the North of England, which returned Members of Parliament to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom.

Charles II of England King of England, Ireland and Scotland

Charles II was king of England, Scotland and Ireland. He was king of Scotland from 1649 until his deposition in 1651, and king of England, Scotland and Ireland from the restoration of the monarchy in 1660 until his death.

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.

Sizergh Castle, the Strickland family home Sizergh Castle 01.jpg
Sizergh Castle, the Strickland family home


Sir Thomas was the eldest son of Sir Robert Strickland of Sizergh and his wife Margaret Alford, daughter of Sir William Alford of Meaux Abbey. He matriculated from St. Alban Hall, Oxford, at age 16 and then studied at Gray's Inn. [3]

Sir Robert Strickland of Sizergh was an English landowner and politician who sat in the House of Commons in the Parliament of 1624. He supported King Charles I during the Wars of the Three Kingdoms.

Meaux Abbey

Meaux Abbey was a Cistercian abbey founded in 1151 by William le Gros, 1st Earl of Albemarle, Earl of York and 4th Lord of Holderness, near Beverley in the East Riding of Yorkshire, England.

Grays Inn one of the four Inns of Court in London, England

The Honourable Society of Gray's Inn, commonly known as Gray's Inn, is one of the four Inns of Court in London. To be called to the bar and practise as a barrister in England and Wales, a person must belong to one of these Inns. Located at the intersection of High Holborn and Gray's Inn Road in Central London, the Inn is both a professional body and a provider of office accommodation (chambers) for many barristers. It is ruled by a governing council called "Pension", made up of the Masters of the Bench, and led by the Treasurer, who is elected to serve a one-year term. The Inn is known for its gardens, or Walks, which have existed since at least 1597.

At Edgehill, the first pitched battle of the First English Civil War, Thomas Strickland commanded the regiment of foot while his father Sir Robert Strickland commanded a regiment of horse. For his gallantry, Thomas Strickland was made knight banneret by King Charles I in person, on the field at Edgehill, 23 October 1642. [4] [5]

A pitched battle or set piece battle is a battle in which both sides choose the fighting location and time. Either side has the option to disengage before the battle starts or shortly thereafter.

First English Civil War Civil war in England 1642–1646

The First English Civil War (1642–1646) began the series of three wars known as the English Civil War. "The English Civil War" was a series of armed conflicts and political machinations that took place between Parliamentarians and Royalists from 1642 until 1651, and includes the Second English Civil War (1648–1649) and the Third English Civil War (1649–1651). The wars in England were part of the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, being fought contemporaneously with equivalents in Scotland and Ireland. Many castles and high-status homes such as Lathom House were slighted during or after the conflict.

A knight banneret, sometimes known simply as banneret, was a medieval knight who led a company of troops during time of war under his own banner and was eligible to bear supporters in English heraldry.

After the Restoration of Charles II, Sir Thomas was Member of Parliament for the county of Westmorland in the Cavalier Parliament of 1661 until 1676 when he was expelled as a Popish recusant. The Stricklands were a Catholic family, but J.P. Kenyon believes that Sir Thomas was outwardly a Protestant when elected to the House of Commons, and later converted to Catholicism some time after 1661. Ultimately the Test Act of 1673, requiring them to acknowledge the King as head of the Church, made it impossible for the few remaining Catholics in Parliament to retain their seats. [6] He had not been active in the House, speaking only once (against the impeachment of Clarendon) and declined to speak up in his own defence during the Common debate on whether to expel him. As rewards for his loyalty to the Crown, he was granted the salt duty for 20 years, and given the post of Sub-Commissioner of Prizes. Also he shared with Sir John Reresby a 14-year monopoly on the production of steel. [7] The anonymous author (probably Andrew Marvell) of Flagellum Parliamentarium, a contemporary publication which listed many of the pensioners of the Cavalier Parliament, described these rewards as bribes, given not for previous loyalty, but for supporting the court party in the post-restoration parliament. [8]

Cavalier Parliament ruling body of 17th century England

The Cavalier Parliament of England lasted from 8 May 1661 until 24 January 1679. It was the longest English Parliament, enduring for nearly 18 years of the quarter-century reign of Charles II of England. Like its predecessor, the Convention Parliament, it was overwhelmingly Royalist and is also known as the Pensioner Parliament for the many pensions it granted to adherents of the King.

Recusancy refusal to attend mandated Anglican services in the period following the English Reformation

Recusancy was the state of those who refused to attend Anglican services during the history of England and Wales and of Ireland; these individuals were known as recusants. The term, which derives ultimately from the Latin recusare was first used to refer to those who remained loyal to the pope and the Roman Catholic Church and who did not attend Church of England services, with a 1593 statute determining the penalties against "Popish recusants".

Test Act any of a series of English penal laws that served as a religious test for public office

The Test Acts were a series of English penal laws that served as a religious test for public office and imposed various civil disabilities on Roman Catholics and nonconformists. The principle was that none but people taking communion in the established Church of England were eligible for public employment, and the severe penalties pronounced against recusants, whether Catholic or nonconformist, were affirmations of this principle. In practice nonconformists were often exempted from some of these laws through the regular passage of Acts of Indemnity. After 1800 they were seldom enforced, except at Oxbridge, where nonconformists and Catholics could not matriculate (Oxford) or graduate (Cambridge). The Conservative government repealed them in 1828 with little controversy.

During the Popish Plot, he was vulnerable to attack as an open Papist, but his age and ill-health made him an unlikely conspirator and his record of loyalty to the Crown preserved him from danger. [9] A search of Sizergh Castle for arms produced only a few remnants of his Civil War armour, [10] and he further secured his safety by swearing an oath to defend the King against all his enemies, domestic and foreign, even the Pope himself. [11]

Popish Plot fictitious anti-Catholic conspiracy in England

The Popish Plot was a fictitious conspiracy concocted by Titus Oates that between 1678 and 1681 gripped the Kingdoms of England and Scotland in anti-Catholic hysteria. Oates alleged that there was an extensive Catholic conspiracy to assassinate Charles II, accusations that led to the executions of at least 22 men and precipitated the Exclusion Bill Crisis. Eventually Oates's intricate web of accusations fell apart, leading to his arrest and conviction for perjury.

Armour or armor is a protective covering that is used to prevent damage from being inflicted to an object, individual or vehicle by direct contact weapons or projectiles, usually during combat, or from damage caused by a potentially dangerous environment or activity. Personal armour is used to protect soldiers and war animals. Vehicle armour is used on warships and armoured fighting vehicles.

Sir Thomas was Keeper of the Privy Purse to Charles II and a member of the Privy Council of James II, and following the downfall of James in 1688 he and his family went into exile with him. [12]

He and his wife remained with the exiled court at Saint-Germain-en-Laye until 1692, and then moved to Rouen, where he died on 8 January 1694, and was buried there. [13] Sir Thomas was succeeded in his estates by his eldest son, Walter, who had been able to recover Sizergh, through the common (though technically illegal) device of creating a trust by which the lands were made over to Protestant neighbours, [14] who later reconveyed them to him. [4] [5] [7]


Sir Thomas's son Thomas John Francis, Bishop of Namur Thomas John Francis Strickland Faber.jpg
Sir Thomas's son Thomas John Francis, Bishop of Namur

Sir Thomas Strickland married firstly in 1646, Jane, daughter and co-heiress of Thomas Moseley of Ulleskelf, in the county of Yorkshire, and widow of Sir Christopher Dawnay, first of the Dawnay baronets, by whom he had two surviving daughters:

Sir Thomas married secondly, Winifred (1645–1725), daughter and co-heiress of Sir Christopher Trentham of Rocester Abbey, in the county of Staffordshire, and had issue: [4] [5]


  1. 1 2 Henning, Basil Duke (1983). The House of Commons, 1660-1690. Boydell & Brewer. p. 504. ISBN   9780436192746 . Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  2. Kenyon, J.P The Popish Plot (2000). Phoenix Press reissue, p.9
  3. Alumni Oxonienses: The Members of the University of Oxford, 1715-1886 : Their Parentage, Birthplace and Year of Birth, with a Record of Their Degrees : Being the Matriculation Register of the University. University of Oxford. 1892. p. 1436. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  4. 1 2 3 4 Nicolson 1777 , p.  102
  5. 1 2 3 4 Burke 1836 , p.  56
  6. Kenyon p.9
  7. 1 2 Ferguson 1871 , pp. 35, 442
  8. Marvel 1827, p.  23.
  9. Kenyon p.262
  10. Kenyon p.124
  11. Kenyon p.262
  12. Cruickshanks, Eveline and Corp, Edward, editors (1995). The Stuart Court in Exile and the Jacobites, The Hambledon Press. p.30
  13. Cruickshanks p.30
  14. Cruickshanks p.30

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