Fanshawe, Thomas (1596-1665) (DNB00)

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Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 18
Fanshawe, Thomas (1596-1665)

by Sidney Lee
1904 Errata appended.
Contains subarticle Thomas Fanshawe, second Viscount Fanshawe (1639-1674).

FANSHAWE, Sir THOMAS, first Viscount Fanshawe of Dromore (1596-1665), was eldest son of Sir Henry Fanshawe [q. v.], and brother of Sir Richard [q. v.] He succeeded on the death of his father in 1616 to the office of remembrancer of the exchequer; and was made a knight of the Bath at the coronation of Charles I, 3 Feb. 1625-6. He was elected M.P. for Hertford on 17 May 1624 and 13 May 1625; for Lancaster on 19 Jan. 1625-6 and 10 March 1627-8; and for Hertford (for which he had been returned in Charles I's third parliament, although he sat for Lancaster) on 26 Oct. 1640. He was commissioner of array for the king in 1641; fought at Edgehill, and had his property sequestrated by the parliament. He was 'disabled to sit' in parliament in 1645. Orders for the sale of Fanshawe's goods were issued by the parliament on 29 June 1643 (Commons' Journal, iii. 149), and on 1 Jan. 1643-4 a committee was appointed to examine a report that Sir William Litton had concealed part of Fanshawe's property (ib. p. 355). He ultimately compounded for the recovery of some of his estates for 1,310l. (Dring, Catalogue), but he was practically ruined. He was with Prince Charles in Jersey in April 1646, and in August his brother Richard visited him at Caen, where he lay ill. In 1661 he was elected M.P. for Hertfordshire; was created Viscount Fanshawe of Dromore in the Irish peerage on 5 Sept. 1661; and died intestate at his town house in Hatton Garden, and was buried at Ware on 30 March 1665. His sister-in-law, Anne, lady Fanshawe (wife of Sir Richard), gives him a high character, but credits him with a hasty temper. He married, first, Anna, daughter of Giles Allington; and, secondly, Elisabeth, fourth daughter of Sir William Cokayne [q. v.] By his second wife, who died early in 1668, he had three daughters and four sons, by his first wife only a daughter, Ann (1628-1714).

Thomas Fanshawe, second Viscount Fanshawe (1639-1674), was baptised at Ware on 17 June 1639; proceeded M. A. at Trinity College, Cambridge; was elected M.P. for Lancaster in (the Long parliament, but 'was disabled to sit' early in 1646: was created K.B. at Charles I's coronation; succeeded to his father's heavily encumbered estates and to his office of remembrancer in 1665, He sold Ware to Sir Thomas Byde in 1668, after his mother's death, for 26,000l. He sat in parliament as M.P. for Hertford from 1661 till his death in 1674. His will is dated 9 May, and he was buried at Ware ten days later. A portrait belongs to Mr. J. Q. Fanshawe. His first wife — 'a very great fortune and most excellent woman' — was Catherine, daughter of Knighton Ferrers of Bedfordbury, Hertfordshire, who died without issue, and was buried at Ware on 13 June 1660. By his second wife, Sarah, daughter of Sir John Evelyn of West Dean, Wiltshire, and widow of Sir John Wray, he had Evelyn, third viscount (1669-1687), and three daughters. His widow remarried George Sanderson, viscount Castleton (17 Feb. 1675), and died in 1717. Evelyn, the third viscount, who died at Aleppo on 10 Oct. 1689 aged 19, and was buried at Ware on 24 Feb. 1687-8, was succeeded in the viscounty by his father's brother Charles, who died unmarried in Suffolk Street, Westminster, on 29 March 1710. The fifth and last viscount was Simon, brother of the fourth viscount, who died unmarried on 23 Oct, 1716, Pepys ridicules in 1668 the impecuniousness of the second viscount's brothers (Diary, ii. 383).

[Notes, Genealogical and Historical, of the Fanshawe Family, 1868-72: Lady Fanshawe's Memoir, 1829; Clarendon State Papers; Cal. State Papers. Dom.; Official Lists of Members of Parliament.]

S. L. L.

Dictionary of National Biography, Errata (1904), p.120
N.B.— f.e. stands for from end and l.l. for last line

Page Col. Line  
190 i 38-43 Fanshawe, Sir Thomas, 1st Viscount Fanshawe: for for Lancaster . . . for Lancaster) on 26 Oct. 1640. read and again on 26 Oct. 1640.
ii 16-18  omit was elected M.P. . . . early in 1646
40  for 1689 read 1687