Paget, William (1572-1629) (DNB00)

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PAGET, WILLIAM, fourth Lord Paget (1572–1629), born in 1572, was son of Thomas, third baron Paget [q. v.], by Nazaret, daughter of Sir John Newton of Barr's Court, Somerset, and widow of Sir Thomas Southwell of Norfolk. He was a staunch protestant. In 1587 he matriculated at Oxford as a member of Christ Church, and graduated B.A. on 25 Feb. 1589–90 (Foster, Alumni Oxon. 1500–1714, iii. 1107). He was with Essex at the taking of Cadiz in 1596, being then a knight, and on 22 July 1597 a portion of the lands forfeited by his father's attainder in 1586 was granted to him in fee farm (Lysons, Middlesex Parishes, p. 34; Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1595–7, p. 468). In 1598 he was in attendance on Sir Robert Cecil when ambassador at Paris, and afterwards travelled into Italy (ib. 1598–1601, p. 43). James I restored him to his lands and honours (ib. 1603–10, p. 32), and from 1605 to 1628 he was summoned to parliament as Baron Paget. In May 1628, during the debate in the lords on Weston's clause in the petition of right which had been rejected by the commons, Buckingham proposed by way of concession to change the words ‘sovereign power’ into ‘prerogative,’ an amendment which puzzled the house. Paget, in a speech of some length, suggested that the judges should be asked their opinion (Gardiner, Hist. of England, vi. 281). He died at his house in Westminster on 29 Aug. 1629, and was buried in the church of West Drayton, Middlesex (will registered in P.C.C. 110, Barrington). A curious account of the dissection of his body is in Rawlinson MS. C. 402, art. 12 (Cat. Codd. MSS. Bibl. Bodl., Rawl. MS., pars V. fasc. ii. p. 853). In 1602 he married Lettice, daughter and coheiress of Henry Knollys of Kingsbury, Warwickshire (Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1601–3, p. 248), by whom he had three sons: William, fifth baron Paget, who is separately noticed, and Henry and Thomas, who both died unmarried. Of four daughters, Anne, the youngest, married, first, Sir Simon Harcourt of Stanton Harcourt, Oxfordshire; and, secondly, Sir William Waller, general of the parliament's forces. In 1643 Lady Paget was assessed at 500l., but, as she had previously lent the parliament 200l., she was discharged of her assessment on 25 July (Cal. of Committee for Advance of Money, p. 193; Commons' Journals, iii. 181).

[Collins's Peerage, ed. 1812, v. 187; Nichols's Progresses of James I.]

G. G.