Thomas Yonge

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Thomas Yonge or Young [1] (c. 1405–1476) was an English judge.

He was the elder son of Thomas Yonge (d. 1426), who was Mayor of Bristol in 1411, and Member of Parliament for Bristol in 1413–14. His younger brother, Sir John Yonge, settled in London, representing the city in parliament and becoming Sheriff in 1455 and Lord Mayor in 1466. Being, like his brother, a strong Yorkist, he was knighted by Edward IV after his restoration to the throne on 20 May 1471. [2] Thomas Yonge received a legal education at the Middle Temple, and from 1439 onwards his name frequently occurs in the year-books. Probably also he was the Thomas Yonge who was counsel for the city of Exeter in 1447. [3]

Bristol was a two-member constituency, used to elect members to the House of Commons in the Parliaments of England, Great Britain (1707–1800) and the United Kingdom. The constituency existed until Bristol was divided into single member constituencies in 1885.

London Capital of the United Kingdom

London is the capital and largest city of England and the United Kingdom. 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.

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 united 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.

On 26 September 1435 he was returned to Parliament for Bristol, being described as a "mercator" (merchant). He was re-elected for the same constituency on 17 December 1436, 8 January 1441–2, 31 January 1446–7, 27 January 1448–9, 28 October 1449, and 5 October 1450. Bristol was, like most of the trading centres, Yorkist in sympathies, and in June 1451 Yonge distinguished himself by presenting to Parliament a petition from his constituents to the effect that the Duke of York should be recognised heir to the throne. This was part of the attack upon the Duke of Somerset, whose position was, however, unshaken; parliament was dissolved, and Yonge was committed to the Tower. He was released in April 1452, on the general pardon issued after the temporary reconciliation of the two parties. On 7 July 1455 Yonge was once more elected for Bristol, and in January 1456 claimed redress for his arrest and imprisonment, reminding the commons in his petition that all members "ought to have their freedom to speak and say in the house of their assembly as to them is thought convenient or reasonable without any manner of challenge, charge, or punition therefore to be laid to them in any wise". [4] The commons sent up the bill to the House of Lords, and the king ordered that the Lords of the Council should provide a remedy; but no further proceedings in the matter are recorded.

Richard of York, 3rd Duke of York 15th-century English noble

Richard of York, 3rd Duke of York, also named Richard Plantagenet, was a leading English magnate, a great-grandson of King Edward III through his father, and a great-great-great-grandson of the same king through his mother. He inherited vast estates and served in various offices of state in Ireland, France, and England, a country he ultimately governed as Lord Protector during the madness of King Henry VI.

Edmund Beaufort, 2nd Duke of Somerset 15th-century English noble

Edmund Beaufort, 2nd Duke of Somerset, KG, was an English nobleman and an important figure in the Wars of the Roses and in the Hundred Years' War. He also succeeded in the title of 4th Earl of Somerset and was created 1st Earl of Dorset and 1st Marquess of Dorset, and Count of Mortain. He was known for his deadly rivalry with Richard of York, 3rd Duke of York.

Tower of London A historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames in central London

The Tower of London, officially Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress of the Tower of London, is a historic castle located on the north bank of the River Thames in central London. It lies within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, separated from the eastern edge of the square mile of the City of London by the open space known as Tower Hill. It was founded towards the end of 1066 as part of the Norman Conquest of England. The White Tower, which gives the entire castle its name, was built by William the Conqueror in 1078 and was a resented symbol of oppression, inflicted upon London by the new ruling elite. The castle was used as a prison from 1100 until 1952, although that was not its primary purpose. A grand palace early in its history, it served as a royal residence. As a whole, the Tower is a complex of several buildings set within two concentric rings of defensive walls and a moat. There were several phases of expansion, mainly under kings Richard I, Henry III, and Edward I in the 12th and 13th centuries. The general layout established by the late 13th century remains despite later activity on the site.

Yonge was naturally not elected to the Lancastrian parliament which met at Coventry, a curious side-light on the division of parties being afforded by the fact that two "generosi de nativitate" take the place of the usual "mercatores" in the representation of Bristol. He was, however, returned for Gloucestershire on 15 September 1460 to the parliament which reversed the proceedings at Coventry. He probably also sat in the parliaments of 1461 and 1462–3, the returns for which are lost, and the triumph of his party under Edward IV secured Yonge much administrative employment and legal promotion. On 7 November 1463 he was appointed serjeant-at-law, and king's serjeant on the following day, and in November 1467 he was raised to the bench as justice of the common pleas. He was not, however, removed when Henry VI was restored in October 1470, but lost his position during the puzzling rearrangement of the judiciary, when Edward IV regained his throne six months later, though he was exempted from the operation of the Act of Resumption in 1472–3. On 29 October 1475, in spite of his advanced age, he was appointed a justice of the King's Bench. He died in the following year, and was buried in Christ Church, London. John Yonge (1467?–1516), the Master of the Rolls, is doubtfully said to have been his son, and Walter Yonge the diarist to have been descended from him. [5]

The constituency of Gloucestershire was a UK Parliamentary constituency. After it was abolished under the 1832 Electoral Reform Act, two new constituencies, West Gloucestershire and East Gloucestershire, were created.

Serjeant-at-law Member of an order of barristers at the English bar

A Serjeant-at-Law (SL), commonly known simply as a Serjeant, was a member of an order of barristers at the English and Irish bar. The position of Serjeant-at-Law, or Sergeant-Counter, was centuries old; there are writs dating to 1300 which identify them as descended from figures in France before the Norman Conquest. The Serjeants were the oldest formally created order in England, having been brought into existence as a body by Henry II. The order rose during the 16th century as a small, elite group of lawyers who took much of the work in the central common law courts. With the creation of Queen's Counsel during the reign of Elizabeth I, the order gradually began to decline, with each monarch opting to create more King's or Queen's Counsel. The Serjeants' exclusive jurisdictions were ended during the 19th century and, with the Judicature Act 1873 coming into force in 1875, it was felt that there was no need to have such figures, and no more were created. The last appointed was Nathaniel Lindley, later a Law Lord, who retired in 1905 and died in 1921. The number of Irish Serjeants-at-law was limited to three. The last appointment was A. M. Sullivan in 1912; after his 1921 relocation to the English bar he remained "Serjeant Sullivan" as a courtesy title.

Justice of the Common Pleas Puisne judicial position within the Court of Common Pleas of England and Wales, under the Chief Justice

Justice of the Common Pleas was a puisne judicial position within the Court of Common Pleas of England and Wales, under the Chief Justice. The Common Pleas was the primary court of common law within England and Wales, dealing with "common" pleas. It was created out of the common law jurisdiction of the Exchequer of Pleas, with splits forming during the 1190s and the division becoming formal by the beginning of the 13th century. The court became a key part of the Westminster courts, along with the Exchequer of Pleas and the Court of King's Bench, but with the Writ of Quominus and the Statute of Westminster, both tried to extend their jurisdiction into the realm of common pleas. As a result, the courts jockeyed for power. In 1828 Henry Brougham, a Member of Parliament, complained in Parliament that as long as there were three courts unevenness was inevitable, saying that "It is not in the power of the courts, even if all were monopolies and other restrictions done away, to distribute business equally, as long as suitors are left free to choose their own tribunal", and that there would always be a favourite court, which would therefore attract the best lawyers and judges and entrench its position. The outcome was the Supreme Court of Judicature Act 1873, under which all the central courts were made part of a single Supreme Court of Judicature. Eventually the government created a High Court of Justice under Lord Coleridge by an Order in Council of 16 December 1880. At this point, the Common Pleas formally ceased to exist.

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  1. Josiah Clement Wedgwood and Anne Holt. History of Parliament: Biographies of Members of the Commons House: 1439-1509. HMSO. 1936. Page 982. Google Books.
  2. Warkworth, Chron. p. 31
  3. Shillingford, Letters, Camden Soc. pp. 22, 149, 152.
  4. Rot. Parl. v. 337; Stubbs, Const. Hist. iii. 159, 174, 493; Ramsay, Lancaster and York, ii. 149, 151, 191.
  5. Burke, Extinct Baronetcies; but cf. Vivian, Visit. of Devon, 1895, p. 840.

Wikisource-logo.svg  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain : Pollard, Albert Frederick (1900). "Yonge, Thomas". In Lee, Sidney (ed.). Dictionary of National Biography . 63. London: Smith, Elder & Co. p. 330.

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Sidney Lee 19th/20th-century English biographer and critic

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