Button, William (d.1654) (DNB00)

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BUTTON, Sir WILLIAM (d. 1654), royalist, was descended from the old family of Bitton or Button, so called from the parish of Bitton in the county of Gloucester. He was the eldest son of William Button of Alton, and of Jane, daughter of John Lamb, in the county of Wiltshire (Berry, Hampshire Pedigrees). Lloyd (Memoirs, 649) confounds him with his son who died in 1660, and the error is repeated by Jackson (Aubrey, Collections for Wiltshire, 190). Both state that he was educated at Exeter College under Dr. Prideaux, and attended Sir Arthur Hepton in his embassy through France and Spain, but the original source of these statements is the sermon preached on 12 April 1660 by Francis Bayly in the parish church of North Wraxall at the funeral of the second Sir William Button, to whom alone they apply. The father of this Sir William Button was raised to the baronetage on 18 April 1621 (Burke, History of the Commoners, iv. 370). During the civil wars he was a staunch royalist, and on this account his house Tokenham Court was twice stripped and his property carried off, the first occasion being in June 1643 by Sir Ed. Hungerford, when his loss was 767l., and the second in June 1644 by a party of horse from Malmesbury garrison, when it amounted to 526l. 6s. In the November following his estate at Tokenham was sequestrated, after which he lived at his manor of Shaw near Overton. In 1646 he was fined 2,380l. for ‘delinquency.’ He died on 28 Jan. 1654–5, and was buried in the vault in the north aisle of North Wraxall church. Lloyd, confounding him with his son, gives the date of his death erroneously as 1660. By his marriage with Ruth, daughter of Walter Dunche of Avebury, he left four sons and three daughters.

[Aubrey's Collections for Wiltshire, ed. Jackson, 190; Burke's History of the Commoners, iv. 370; Berry's Hampshire Pedigrees; Lloyd's Memoirs, 649.]

T. F. H.