Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Newcourt, Richard (d.1679)

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NEWCOURT, RICHARD, the elder (d. 1679), topographical draughtsman, was second son, by Mary Tucker, his wife, of Philip Newcourt of Tiverton, Devonshire. His father was third son of John Newcourt of Pickwell, in the same county, by Mary, daughter of Thomas Parker of North Molton, and widow of George Hext. Newcourt was baptised at Washfield, near Tiverton. On 23 Sept. 1633 he was granted admonition of the will of Sir Edward Hext, his father's half-brother, and on 16 May 1657 he received permission to act in a like capacity for Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Edward Hext and widow of Sir John Stawell of Cothelstone, Somerset. He became possessed of an estate at Somerton, Somerset, where he resided. Newcourt was a friend of Sir William Dugdale [q. v.], and drew some views of religious houses, which were engraved by Hollar for Dugdale's ‘Monasticon Anglicanum.’ Subsequently he undertook a very important work, entitled ‘An Exact Delineation of the Cities of London and Westminster and the Suburbs thereof, Together wth ye Burrough of Southwark And all ye Thorough-fares Highwaies Streetes Lanes and Common Allies wthin ye same Composed by a Scale, and Ichnographically described by Richard Newcourt of Somerton in the Countie of Somersett Gentleman.’ This is the most important map of London executed before the great fire. It was engraved by William Faithorne the elder [q. v.], published in 1658, and is so rare that only two examples of the original are at present known to exist. Newcourt died in 1679, and was buried with his wife at Somerton. In his will (89 King), dated 25 March 1675, and proved on 4 July 1679, he mentions his eldest son, Richard [q. v.]; his second son, Gerard, who succeeded him at Somerton; and his daughter, Mary, wife of Thomas Spicer of Somerton.

[Redgrave's Dict. of Artists; Fagan's Cat. of Faithorne's Works; Brown's Somersetshire Wills, 2nd and 3rd ser.]

L. C.