Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Montagu, Edward (1562-1644)
MONTAGU, EDWARD, first Baron Montagu of Boughton (1562–1644), born in 1562, was the second son of Sir Edward Montagu, knt. (1532–1602), of Boughton Castle, Northamptonshire, high sheriff for the county in 1567, by his wife Elizabeth (d. 1618), daughter of Sir James Harington of Exton, Rutland. His grandfather was Sir Edward Montagu (d. 1557) [q.v.], chief justice of the king's bench. James Montagu, [q. v.], bishop of Winchester, Sir Henry Montagu, first earl of Manchester [q. v.], and Sir Sidney Montagu, master of requests, who was the ancestor of the Earls of Sandwich, were his brothers. Montagu matriculated from Christ Church, Oxford, about 1574, graduated B.A. 14 March 1578–9, and was a student of the Middle Temple in 1580. He represented Brackley, Northamptonshire, in the parliament of 1601, and Northamptonshire in those of 1603–4–1611, 1614, and 1620–1–2. He was made K.B. by James I at his coronation, 25 July 1603, and created Baron Montagu of Boughton on 29 June 1621.
On 9 Feb. 1604–5, with other gentlemen of Northamptonshire, he presented a petition to the king in favour of those ministers in the county who refused subscription. The petitioners were warned that their combination ' in a cause against which the king had shewed his mislike … was little less than treason.' Montagu was for the time deprived of his lieutenancy and justiceship of the peace in the county (Winwood, Memorials, ii. 48-9).
From 1635 to 1637 he was occupied with the ship-money assessment of the county. In February 1638-9, when summoned to attend the king at York, he obeyed, though then seventy-six years of age, and with 'some great infirmities' upon him. As lord-lieutenant of Northamptonshire he put in execution the commission of array, but he voted against the king on the question of precedency of supply on 24 April 1640 (Cal. State Papers, 1640, p. 66). On 11 Sept. 1640 he wrote to his nephew, Edward Montagu (afterwards second earl of Manchester) [q. v.], in support of the petition to the king for summoning a new parliament (Duke of Manchester's MSS.}, and on 21 March 1641–2 complained in a second letter to his nephew that the parliament had been guilty of the grave sin of usury (ib.) His popularity and influence in Northamptonshire, combined with his known loyalty, led to an order of parliament (24 Aug. 1642) for bringing Montigu as a prisoner to London. On his way thither he encountered at Barnet the Earl of Essex, who was marching north with the parliamentary army. The earl stopped to salute the aged lord, but Montagu peremptorily ordered his coachman to drive on. Having refused the parliament's offer of residence in the house of his own daughter, the Countess of Rutland, he was committed to the Tower on 10 Sept., but on account of his health was afterwards moved to his house in the Savoy, where he died a prisoner on 15 June 1644. He was buried at Weekley, Northamptonshire, on 26 June (par. reg.)
A strict upholder of the church and its ceremonies, and of the Book of Common Prayer, Montagu led so severe and regular a life that he was frequently reckoned among the puritans. He was a hospitable neighbour, a good landlord, and a firm administrator of justice. He was no courtier, and, though regular in his attendance in parliament, was rarely at Whitehall. In 1613 he built and endowed a hospital for aged men at Weekley, and was also a benefactor to Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, and to the town of Northampton. A portrait of Montagu belongs to the Earl of Sandwich.
Montagu married Elizabeth (d. 6 Dec. 1611), daughter of John Jeffrey [q. v.] of Chiddingly in Sussex, chief baron of the exchequer, by whom he had an only daughter, Elizabeth (d. 30 Nov. 1654), who married Robert, lord Willoughby of Eresby, afterwards first Earl of Lindsey, who fell at the battle of Edgehill. He married secondly Frances, daughter of Thomas Cotton of Connington in Huntingdonshire, and half-sister of Sir Robert Bruce Cotton [q. v.], by whom he had three sons and one daughter: Edward, who succeeded him, and is noticed below; Christopher, born 1618, admitted to Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, 20 March 1633, and died 1641; Sir William (1619-1706) [q. v.], chief baron of the exchequer; and Frances (d. 19 May 1671),who married in 1628 John Manners, eighth earl of Rutland [q. v.] His second wife dying in May 1620 (buried 16 May, par. reg.), Montagu married thirdly, on 16 Feb. 1624-5, at St. Michael's, Cornhill, Anne, daughter of John Crouch of Cornbury in Hertfordshire, and widow of Sir Ralph Hare of Stow in Norfolk. She died on 11 June 1648, aged 75.
Edward Montagu, second Baron Montagu of Boughton (1616-1684), was born at Weekley on 11 July 1616 (par. reg.), and entered Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, on 2 March 1631. He represented the borough of Huntingdon in the Long parliament (elected 23 Oct. 1640) until called to the upper house on the death of his father in 1644. He took the engagement to the Common wealth in October 1644, and was constantly in the House of Lords during the proceedings against Archbishop Laud. On 18 July 1645 he was nominated by both houses of parliament one of the commissioners to reside with the Scottish army in England, and in that capacity treated for the surrender of Newark in May 1646. His letter to the House of Lords on sending a copy of the articles of the surrender of Newark (6 May 1646) is among the Tanner MSS. in the Bodleian Library (lix. f. 135). With the Earls of Pembroke and Denbigh he received the king's person from the Scots, and conducted him to Holdenby or Holmby. His report, read in the House of Lords on 10 June 1647, appeared in pamphlet form in London, 1647 (Brit. Mus., E. 392 (10)). He afterwards attended Charles till his escape in 1647.
He took no part in the trial of the king, was summoned to sit as one of Cromwell's lords in December 1657, and eagerly welcomed the return of Charles II. After the Restoration he resided chiefly at Boughton, died on 10 Jan. 1683-4, and was buried at Weekley. He married Anne, daughter, and eventually heir, of Sir Ralph Winwood [q. v.] of Ditton Park, Buckinghamshire, by whom he had two sons and one daughter: Edward, noticed below, whom he survived; Ralph, who succeeded him [see Montagu, Ralph, first Duke of Montagu]; and Elizabeth, who married Sir Daniel Harvey, ambassador at Constantinople. Several letters of his to Lord and Lady Hatton, mostly on family matters, are in the British Museum (Addit. MSS. 29550 ff. 166, 175, 177, 186, 188, 196, 29551 ff. 5, 18, 29553 f. 349, 29557 ff. 91, 93, 29558 ff. 25, 26, 28).
Edward Montagu (1635–1665), eldest son of the second Baron Montagu, was educated at Westminster School, matriculated from Christ Church, Oxford, on 5 June 1651, and was admitted at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, on 25 Sept. 1651. He was created M.A. of Oxford on 9 Sept. 1661. In 1659 he joined his cousin, Admiral Montagu [see Montagu, Edward, Earl of Sandwich], with a view to influencing him in favour of the Restoration, and was acting as a medium of communication between Charles and the admiral in April 1660 (Pepys, Diary, 1848, i. 57). He represented Sandwich in parliament from 1661 to 1665, and was master of the horse to Queen Catharine. He was killed at Bergen in Norway in August 1665, in an attack on the Dutch East India fleet.