Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Parker, John (fl.1655)

PARKER, JOHN (fl. 1655), judge, came from Weylond Underwood, Buckinghamshire, and was admitted a student of Gray's Inn in 1611. He was called to the bar on 26 June 1617, and became successively an ancient of his inn in 1638, a bencher in 1640, and reader in 1642. For many years he lived at Gravesend and was recorder of that town (Green, Domestic State Papers, 20 May 1658), and a militia commissioner for Kent (ib. 19 Feb. 1651). On 20 March 1647 he was appointed a Welsh judge, and in the following year (12 May) received the commons' commission to try rioters in Wales. He seems to have found favour with parliament, for by it he was made a serjeant on 30 Oct. 1648, was confirmed in his Welsh judgeship on 5 March 1649, and on 18 July in the same year he was granted a patent for a registrarship in the prerogative court. By statute of 9 July 1651 he was appointed to try causes at Durham, and later—before 1655, but when is not precisely known—was appointed a baron of the exchequer. He was member for Rochester in the parliaments of 1654 and 1656, and was summoned by Cromwell as assistant to the upper house. He lost his judgeship at the Restoration, but met with no other disfavour, and was even, alone among the Commonwealth serjeants, summoned to the degree of serjeant-at-law (Siderfin, Reports, i. 4). He issued in 1650 a book entitled ‘Government of the People of England, precedent and present’ (a small tract in the Thomason Collection at the British Museum). Parker's eldest son, Dr. Samuel Parker, bishop of Oxford, is separately noticed.

[Foss's Judges of England; Whitelocke's Memorials, pp. 305, 346, 386, 414, 678, 693; Parl. Hist. iii. 1430, 1480, 1519; Godwin's History, ii. 235, iii. 527; Wood's Athenæ, iv. 225; Hardre's Reports; Inderwick's Interregnum; Marvell's Rehearsal Transprosed, ed. 1674, pt. ii. p. 67.]

J. A. H.

Dictionary of National Biography, Errata (1904), p.214
N.B.— f.e. stands for from end and l.l. for last line

Page Col. Line  
247 i 21f.e. Parker, John (fl. 1655): for Anthony à Wood states that he read He
19-18 f.e. for but if so ... extant read (a copy of the small tract is in the Thomason Collection at the British Museum)