Spelman, Clement (DNB00)
|←Speke, John Hanning||Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 53
SPELMAN, CLEMENT (1598–1679), cursitor baron of the exchequer, was fourth and youngest son of Sir Henry Spelman [q. v.], by his wife Eleanor, eldest daughter and coheiress of John L'Estrange of Hunstanton. Sir John Spelman (1594–1643) [q. v.] was his eldest brother. He was born in 1598, and baptised at Sedgeford in Norfolk on 4 Oct. 1598. He was entered at Gray's Inn on 20 March 1613, and was admitted pensioner of Queens' College, Cambridge, on 16 Sept. 1616. In 1624 he was called to the bar, but appears in the first instance, after the manner of his family, to have devoted himself to antiquarian pursuits rather than to his profession. He apparently lived in London. On 24 Feb. 1635 he was one of the performers in a masque at the Middle Temple (Wood, Athenæ, vol. iii. 807 n., ed. Bliss). He was appointed on 22 Aug. 1638 member of a commission to inquire into breaches of the statute of 31 Eliz., which directed that to every cottage erected four acres of land should be attached, and at the same time he took part in another commission to inquire into breaches of the laws against usury (Cal. State Papers, Dom. Charles I, 22 Aug. 1635).
Spelman wrote a long preface, which is a kind of abstract of the ‘History and Fate of Sacrilege,’ to the edition of his father's treatise ‘De non temerandis Ecclesiis’ (Oxford, 1646); and in 1647 published anonymously a tract entitled ‘Reasons for admitting the King to a Personal Treaty in Parliament and not by Commissioners.’ The following year he wrote and published ‘A Letter to the Assembly of Divines concerning Sacrilege.’ He was also probably the author of ‘A Character of the Oliverians’ published in 1660 (Wood, Athenæ, iv. 7). The name of Clement Spelman appears in a list of sequestered delinquents on 24 April 1648, but there was another member of his family of somewhat similar age and the same name who was possibly the delinquent in question. He had been made an ancient of Gray's Inn in 1638, and was elected bencher in 1660.
On the Restoration his services were rewarded by his appointment as cursitor baron of the exchequer on 9 March 1663, which post he held till March 1679.
He died in June 1679, and was buried in St. Dunstan's Church, Fleet Street. Spelman married Martha, daughter and coheiress of Francis Mason, by whom he left two sons and two daughters; of the latter, Dorothy married Sir Robert Yallop, and was grandmother of Edward Spelman [q. v.][Foss's Judges, vii. 171; Norfolk Archæological Soc. vol. vii. pt. vii. p. 253; Cal. State Papers, Dom.]