Thomas de la Dale

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Sir Thomas de la Dale (c.13171373) was an English-born judge and landowner who held the office of Lord Chief Justice of Ireland

Judge official who presides over court proceedings

A judge is a person who presides over court proceedings, either alone or as a part of a panel of judges. The powers, functions, method of appointment, discipline, and training of judges vary widely across different jurisdictions. The judge is supposed to conduct the trial impartially and, typically, in an open court. The judge hears all the witnesses and any other evidence presented by the barristers or solicitors of the case, assesses the credibility and arguments of the parties, and then issues a ruling on the matter at hand based on his or her interpretation of the law and his or her own personal judgment. In some jurisdictions, the judge's powers may be shared with a jury. In inquisitorial systems of criminal investigation, a judge might also be an examining magistrate.

Lord Chief Justice of Ireland

The Court of King's Bench was one of the senior courts of common law in Ireland. It was a mirror of the Court of King's Bench in England. The Lord Chief Justice was the most senior judge in the court, and the second most senior Irish judge under English rule and later when Ireland became part of the United Kingdom. Additionally, for a brief period between 1922 and 1924, the Lord Chief Justice of Ireland was the most senior judge in the Irish Free State.


He was born at Little Barford, Bedfordshire, son of Thomas de la Dale, who married the heiress of Barford, Isabel de Leyham, in 1316. In 1346 "Thomas, son of Isabel" (who was almost certainly our Sir Thomas) was listed as the owner of Barford; he also inherited lands at Everton cum Tetworth in the same county. In 1358 he was exempted from the usual feudal duties of a landowner.

Little Barford farm village in the United Kingdom

Little Barford is a village and civil parish located in Bedfordshire, England. It lies on the county boundary with Cambridgeshire, adjacent to the town of St Neots. It is in the civil parish of Wyboston, Chawston and Coleford. The village itself is very small and is close to the east bank of the River Great Ouse.

Bedfordshire County of England

Bedfordshire is a county in the East of England. It is a ceremonial county and a historic county, covered by three unitary authorities: Bedford, Central Bedfordshire, and Luton.

Everton, Bedfordshire village and civil parish in Bedfordshire, England

Everton is a small village of about 200 dwellings and civil parish in the Central Bedfordshire district of Bedfordshire, England. It is located close to the border with Cambridgeshire, a little over two miles north-east of the market town of Sandy.

Everton cum Tetworth, Bedfordshire, present day: de la Dale was the landowner here in the mid fourteenth century Everton cum Tetworth.JPG
Everton cum Tetworth, Bedfordshire, present day: de la Dale was the landowner here in the mid fourteenth century

He was sent to Ireland in 1361, in the entourage of Lionel of Antwerp, Duke of Clarence, the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland; he remained in Ireland, apart from a few short intervals, until 1369. He was made Lord Chief Justice in 1365, and was also described as "Governor of Ireland"; he became Custos Rotulorum of Ireland in 1366. He died in 1373.

Ireland Island in north-west Europe, 20th largest in world, politically divided into the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland (a part of the UK)

Ireland is an island in the North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, and St George's Channel. Ireland is the second-largest island of the British Isles, the third-largest in Europe, and the twentieth-largest on Earth.

Lord Lieutenant of Ireland title of the chief governor of Ireland from the Williamite Wars of 1690 till the Partition of Ireland in 1922

Lord Lieutenant of Ireland was the title of the chief governor of Ireland from the Williamite Wars of 1690 until the Partition of Ireland in 1922. This spanned the Kingdom of Ireland (1541–1800) and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (1801–1922). The office, under its various names, was often more generally known as the viceroy, and his wife was known as the vicereine. The government of Ireland in practice was usually in the hands of the Lord Deputy up to the 17th century, and later of the Chief Secretary for Ireland. Although in the Middle Ages some Lords Deputy were Irish noblemen, only men from Great Britain, usually peers, were appointed to the office of Lord Lieutenant.

His son and heir, also named Sir Thomas de la Dale (died 1396), was a senior member of the household of Lionel's younger brother, John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster. He sometimes went by the alternative surname Fulthorpe, and was described as "a man of substance". Fulthorpe was succeeded by his son, who was yet another Thomas de la Dale. The de la Dales owned Barford until the male line of the family died out in the sixteenth century. The last of the de la Dales, Anne, daughter of William de la Dale, married Alexander Fettiplace in 1537. Their descendants remained at Barford until 1658.

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.

Duke of Lancaster (Reigning Monarch)

The Duke of Lancaster is the titular owner of the estates of the Duchy of Lancaster and head of the County Palatine of Lancaster. It is also an ancient title that is informally used within Lancaster to describe Elizabeth II, the monarch of the United Kingdom. The Duchy of Lancaster exists as a separate entity from the Crown Estate and currently provides income for the British monarch.

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Legal offices
Preceded by
Richard White
Lord Chief Justice of the King's Bench for Ireland
Succeeded by
John Keppock