6.1. Alexander Standish[10A1]

6.1. (36) AS 1609-16: Alexander in Chancery Courts

Helen Moorwood 2013

N.B. By clicking on the coloured title you can return to the original articles written in early 2004 and placed by Peter Duxbury on A Duxbury Family Website in March 2004, where it still is, under:

Helen's Story: from Duxbury to Shakespeare. The story of William Shakespeare's Lancashire Ancestry, by Helen Moorwood

10. The Biography of Alexander Standish

N.B. Most of this still stands, but where appropriate the 2004 version is now updated below by interspersed commentary in square brackets and italics. Some reformatting was necessary, and the occasional typo – whether by Peter or myself - has been silently corrected. Asap a shorter narrative version of his biography will appear, based, of course, on all details and documents in this file. Meanwhile, this is part (36) of (1) to (45) AS. [2013 HM]


(36) 1609-16: Alexander in Chancery courts

(sorting out the aftermath of plots?)

This section is a real teaser, the details of which might take some time to sort out to the satisfaction of anyone interested, and maybe never will be. I repeat that I have no theory and no axe to grind; I merely report on (mainly unpublished) documents, which (it seems to me) might be of interest to not a few academics interested in plots and plotters. If I have any axe to grind in these years, it is in the rather innocent form of trying to piece together the biography of AS, the history of Duxbury, and still trying to understand how on earth Countess Alice came to be in Anglezarke in 1622-3. Another innocent requirement is that we desperately need a realistic full biography of Baron Thomas Langton of Walton (died 1605 in London). He seems to have been a bit of a rogue and renegade. He pops up all over the place in Lancashire and London, and in AS’s story while sorting out his estates after his death.

1609. Honigmann, Weever, 1987 (p. 38), detected a document in which AS appeared in a Chancery suit in London in 1609 with Sir Richard Hoghton v. G. Blundell. This was related to sorting out the estates of Baron (Sir) Thomas Langton of Newton and Walton-le-Dale, who died in London on 20 February 1605 (Honigmann, Weever, p. 8) without a son and heir. He had been the main perpetrator of the ‘affray at Lea’ in November 1589 and was arrested and “grilled” after the Hesketh Plot of 1593 (Edwards, Plots and Plotters, 2000, p. 181). It would be interesting to know more about him. Honigmann suspected that the affray had not led to the manor of Walton being awarded soon afterwards to Sir Richard Hoghton as recompense for the death of his father TH (as related above by Jessica Lofthouse and everyone else) but had come to the Hoghtons via other means. Honigmann’s main interest in this document was that it provided a signature of John Weever in 1609 (facsimile of the bottom of the document on p. 56). The main interest for AS is that “Alex: Standish” and “Duxburie in com. Lanc.” appear in the last three lines, with the implication that he knew Weever, who was a witness. It is almost certain that this document was related to the series of documents in the Standish of Duxbury MSS, which in turn make it clear that AS was centrally involved in sorting out the mess. He appeared with Sir Richard Hoghton and others in the Chancery court in London either on several occasions, or for one long-protracted case. The three dates of 1609 (above), January 1606 and 1615/16 (immediately below) imply several visits.

“Papers relating to case in Chancery concerning estate of Sir Thomas Langton, Kt. in Walton-le-dale, c. 1582-1615/16.” (Catalogue: DP397/13/8-13.)

The first after Sir Thomas’s death is from January 1606 (DP397/13/12) and this and the following are draft copies of various settlements, which AS presumably took home with him, the final documents presumably remaining in London. Some day some dedicated soul might decipher, transcribe and publish all these, and track down the originals in London. I fear that this might take us no nearer to solving the mysteries surrounding ‘the affray at Lea’, although I would love to be proved wrong.

A perusal revealed many familiar names, including Sir Richard Hoghton, James Anderton, James Ashton, Alexander Ashton, Richard Ashton dept. (perhaps Richard Ashton of Croston, married to Jane Hesketh, who died in 1582 and whose son Capt. Roger Ashton was a “Catholic militant, executed 1591”), Sir Thomas Stanley and, very interestingly, “forfeited by Sir Thomas Langton in his lyfe tyme unto John Jacone, Citizen and Alderman of London and Sir Rowlande Jacone his sonne and heire apparente” (DP397/13/12, p. 1). Could this be John Jackson, who was a trustee when Shakespeare purchased Blackfriars Gatehouse in 1613? And also the “Mr John Jackson” appointed as one of the overseers of his will by Thomas Savage of Rufford, a Hesketh in-law, the goldsmith in London who was a trustee for the Globe in 1599? (Honigmann, 1985 devotes chapter VIII to him.) There was also a John Jackson in Baron Langton’s band at the ‘affray at Lea’. Could he have been a young man in Lancashire in 1589, who went to London to make a successful career? Many others certainly did. His son Sir Rowland might allow an identification of ‘John Jacone’ as John Jackson - or not.

A sum of two thousand seven hundred pounds was involved, with several sums of hundreds of pounds owed to some of the above, which are interesting in themselves, but provide no clues to the background of the ‘affray at Lea’. Less familiar names deciphered are Sir William Inglebye, William Ponsonbye, Emen (?) Caterall and Jane “Bryghte”, who was involved in a slander case. Ingleby and Ponsonby are Yorkshire names, and very interestingly, Sir William Ingleby of Ripley Castle near Knaresborough turns up in the Gunpowder Plot story. His daughter Jane was the mother of the two Wintour brothers and his son Francis was a priest who had been hanged, drawn and quartered in 1586. One of the Wintour sons acted as secretary to Lord Mounteagle (Fraser, p. 48). It seems that AS might well have known some of the plotters. (To be continued.)


Copyright © 2013. All Rights Reserved.