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Waldegrave, Richard (DNB00)

WALDEGRAVE or WALGRAVE, Sir RICHARD (d. 1402), speaker of the House of Commons, was the son of Sir Richard Waldegrave by his wife, Agnes Daubeney. He was descended from the Northamptonshire family dwelling at Walgrave. The earliest member of the family known, Warine de Walgrave, was father of John de Walgrave, sheriff of London in 1205. The elder Sir Richard, his great-grandson, crossed to France with Edward III in 1329 (Rymer, Fœdera, 1821, ii. 764), was returned to parliament in 1335 for Lincolnshire, and in 1337 received letters from Edward permitting him to accompany Henry Burghersh [q. v.], bishop of Lincoln, to Flanders (ib. pp. 967, 1027). In 1343 he received similar letters on the occasion of his accompanying Humphrey de Bohun, earl of Hereford, to France (ib. iii. 866).

His son, Sir Richard, resided at Smallbridge in Suffolk, and was returned to parliament as a knight of the shire in the parliament of February 1375–6. He was elected to the first and second parliaments of Richard II and to that of 1381. In 1381 he was elected speaker of the House of Commons, and prayed the king to discharge him from the office; the first instance, says Manning, of a speaker desiring to be excused. Richard II, however, insisted on his fulfilling his duties. During his speakership parliament was chiefly occupied with the revocation of the charters granted to the villeins by Richard during Tyler's rebellion. It was dissolved in February 1381–2. Waldegrave represented Suffolk in the two parliaments of 1382, in those of 1383, in that of 1386, in those of 1388, and in that of January 1389–90. He died at Smallbridge on 2 May 1402, and was buried on the north side of the parish church of St. Mary at Bures in Essex. He married Joan Silvester of Bures, by whom he had a son, Sir Richard Waldegrave (d. 1434), who took part in the French wars, assisting in 1402 in the capture of the town of Conquet and the island of Rhé in Bretagne. He was ancestor of Sir Edward Waldegrave [q. v.]

[Manning's Speakers of the House of Commons, 1850, p. 10; Collins's Peerage, 1779, iv. 417; Rolls of Parliament, ii. 100, 166; Calendar of Patent Rolls, 1377–85 passim.]

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