Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon

Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon

Overview
Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon (18 February 1609 – 9 December 1674) was an English historian and statesman, and grandfather of two English monarchs, Mary II
Mary II of England
Mary II was joint Sovereign of England, Scotland, and Ireland with her husband and first cousin, William III and II, from 1689 until her death. William and Mary, both Protestants, became king and queen regnant, respectively, following the Glorious Revolution, which resulted in the deposition of...

 and Queen Anne
Anne of Great Britain
Anne ascended the thrones of England, Scotland and Ireland on 8 March 1702. On 1 May 1707, under the Act of Union, two of her realms, England and Scotland, were united as a single sovereign state, the Kingdom of Great Britain.Anne's Catholic father, James II and VII, was deposed during the...

.


Hyde was the third son of Henry Hyde of Dinton
Dinton, Wiltshire
Dinton is a village in Wiltshire, England, on the B3089 road about 8 miles west of Salisbury. The population was 597 at the 2001 census.-Present day:...

 and Purton
Purton
Purton is a village and civil parish in Wiltshire. The civil parish includes the village of Purton Stoke and the hamlets of Bentham, Hayes Knoll, Restrop and Widham....

, Wiltshire
Wiltshire
Wiltshire is a ceremonial county in South West England. It is landlocked and borders the counties of Dorset, Somerset, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire. It contains the unitary authority of Swindon and covers...

 (brother of Lawrence Hyde (attorney-general)
Lawrence Hyde (attorney-general)
Sir Lawrence Hyde was an English lawyer who was attorey-general to the consort of King James I. He sat in the House of Commons at various times between 1584 and 1611....

), a member of a family for some time established at Norbury, Cheshire
Norbury, Cheshire
Norbury is a civil parish in the unitary authority of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire. According to the 2001 census, the parish had a population of 190.-External links:...

 and his wife Mary Langford. He was initially educated at Gillingham School
Gillingham School
Gillingham School is a coeducational school situated in Gillingham in North Dorset. Gillingham Grammar School can trace its foundation back to 1516, making it probably the oldest surviving school in Dorset. It was founded as a Free School, paid for out of the proceeds of land gifted to the school...

, and entered Magdalen Hall, Oxford, (now Hertford College, Oxford
Hertford College, Oxford
Hertford College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England. It is located in Catte Street, directly opposite the main entrance of the original Bodleian Library. As of 2006, the college had a financial endowment of £52m. There are 612 students , plus various visiting...

, where his portrait hangs in the hall) in 1622, having been rejected by Magdalen College
Magdalen College, Oxford
Magdalen College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England. As of 2006 the college had an estimated financial endowment of £153 million. Magdalen is currently top of the Norrington Table after over half of its 2010 finalists received first-class degrees, a record...

, and graduated BA in 1626.
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Encyclopedia
Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon (18 February 1609 – 9 December 1674) was an English historian and statesman, and grandfather of two English monarchs, Mary II
Mary II of England
Mary II was joint Sovereign of England, Scotland, and Ireland with her husband and first cousin, William III and II, from 1689 until her death. William and Mary, both Protestants, became king and queen regnant, respectively, following the Glorious Revolution, which resulted in the deposition of...

 and Queen Anne
Anne of Great Britain
Anne ascended the thrones of England, Scotland and Ireland on 8 March 1702. On 1 May 1707, under the Act of Union, two of her realms, England and Scotland, were united as a single sovereign state, the Kingdom of Great Britain.Anne's Catholic father, James II and VII, was deposed during the...

.

Early life



Hyde was the third son of Henry Hyde of Dinton
Dinton, Wiltshire
Dinton is a village in Wiltshire, England, on the B3089 road about 8 miles west of Salisbury. The population was 597 at the 2001 census.-Present day:...

 and Purton
Purton
Purton is a village and civil parish in Wiltshire. The civil parish includes the village of Purton Stoke and the hamlets of Bentham, Hayes Knoll, Restrop and Widham....

, Wiltshire
Wiltshire
Wiltshire is a ceremonial county in South West England. It is landlocked and borders the counties of Dorset, Somerset, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire. It contains the unitary authority of Swindon and covers...

 (brother of Lawrence Hyde (attorney-general)
Lawrence Hyde (attorney-general)
Sir Lawrence Hyde was an English lawyer who was attorey-general to the consort of King James I. He sat in the House of Commons at various times between 1584 and 1611....

), a member of a family for some time established at Norbury, Cheshire
Norbury, Cheshire
Norbury is a civil parish in the unitary authority of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire. According to the 2001 census, the parish had a population of 190.-External links:...

 and his wife Mary Langford. He was initially educated at Gillingham School
Gillingham School
Gillingham School is a coeducational school situated in Gillingham in North Dorset. Gillingham Grammar School can trace its foundation back to 1516, making it probably the oldest surviving school in Dorset. It was founded as a Free School, paid for out of the proceeds of land gifted to the school...

, and entered Magdalen Hall, Oxford, (now Hertford College, Oxford
Hertford College, Oxford
Hertford College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England. It is located in Catte Street, directly opposite the main entrance of the original Bodleian Library. As of 2006, the college had a financial endowment of £52m. There are 612 students , plus various visiting...

, where his portrait hangs in the hall) in 1622, having been rejected by Magdalen College
Magdalen College, Oxford
Magdalen College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England. As of 2006 the college had an estimated financial endowment of £153 million. Magdalen is currently top of the Norrington Table after over half of its 2010 finalists received first-class degrees, a record...

, and graduated BA in 1626. Intended originally for holy orders in the Church of England, the death of two elder brothers made him his father's heir, and in 1625 he entered the Middle Temple
Middle Temple
The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, commonly known as Middle Temple, is one of the four Inns of Court exclusively entitled to call their members to the English Bar as barristers; the others being the Inner Temple, Gray's Inn and Lincoln's Inn...

 to study law. His abilities were more conspicuous than his industry, and at the bar his time was devoted more to general reading and to the society of eminent scholars and writers than to the study of law
Law
Law is a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior, wherever possible. It shapes politics, economics and society in numerous ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people. Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus...

 treatises.

This time was not wasted. In later years Clarendon declared "next the immediate blessing and providence of God Almighty" that he "owed all the little he knew and the little good that was in him to the friendships and conversation...of the most excellent men in their several kinds that lived in that age." These included Ben Jonson
Ben Jonson
Benjamin Jonson was an English Renaissance dramatist, poet and actor. A contemporary of William Shakespeare, he is best known for his satirical plays, particularly Volpone, The Alchemist, and Bartholomew Fair, which are considered his best, and his lyric poems...

, Selden
John Selden
John Selden was an English jurist and a scholar of England's ancient laws and constitution and scholar of Jewish law...

, Waller
Edmund Waller
Edmund Waller, FRS was an English poet and politician who sat in the House of Commons at various times between 1624 and 1679.- Early life :...

, Hales, and especially Lord Falkland
Lucius Cary, 2nd Viscount Falkland
Lucius Cary, 2nd Viscount Falkland was an English author and politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1640 to 1642...

; and from their influence and the wide reading in which he indulged, he doubtless drew the solid learning and literary talent which afterwards distinguished him.

In 1629 he married his first wife, Anne, daughter of Sir George Ayliffe of Grittenham, who died six months afterwards; and secondly, in 1634, Frances
Frances Hyde, Countess of Clarendon
Frances Hyde, Countess of Clarendon - , was an English peeress and the mother-in-law of James II of England and grandmother of Queen Mary II and Queen Anne....

, daughter of Sir Thomas Aylesbury, Master of Requests
Master of Requests
The Master of Requests was a Great Officer of State in Scotland.The office first appeared in the reign of James V. Its functions in Scotland included that of receiving petitions from subjects and presenting them for consideration by the Privy Council...

 and Anne Denman. From this second marriage there were three children, including a daughter, Anne
Anne Hyde
Anne Hyde was the first wife of James, Duke of York , and the mother of two monarchs, Mary II of England and Scotland and Anne of Great Britain....

. In 1633 he was called to the bar, and obtained quickly a good position and practice. His marriages had gained for him influential friends, and in December 1634 he was made keeper of the writs and rolls of the common pleas
Court of Common Pleas (England)
The Court of Common Pleas, or Common Bench, was a common law court in the English legal system that covered "common pleas"; actions between subject and subject, which did not concern the king. Created in the late 12th to early 13th century after splitting from the Exchequer of Pleas, the Common...

; while his able conduct of the petition of the London merchants against Portland earned Laud
William Laud
William Laud was Archbishop of Canterbury from 1633 to 1645. One of the High Church Caroline divines, he opposed radical forms of Puritanism...

's approval.

Political career



In April 1640, Hyde was elected Member of Parliament
Member of Parliament
A Member of Parliament is a representative of the voters to a :parliament. In many countries with bicameral parliaments, the term applies specifically to members of the lower house, as upper houses often have a different title, such as senate, and thus also have different titles for its members,...

 for both Shaftesbury
Shaftesbury (UK Parliament constituency)
Shaftesbury was a parliamentary constituency in Dorset. It returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1295 until 1832 and one member until the constituency was abolished in 1885....

 and Wootton Bassett
Wootton Bassett (UK Parliament constituency)
Wootton Bassett was a parliamentary borough in Wiltshire, which elected two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons from 1447 until 1832, when the rotten borough was abolished by the Great Reform Act.-History:...

 in the Short Parliament
Short Parliament
The Short Parliament was a Parliament of England that sat from 13 April to 5 May 1640 during the reign of King Charles I of England, so called because it lasted only three weeks....

 and chose to sit for Wootton Bassett. In November 1640 he was elected MP for Saltash
Saltash (UK Parliament constituency)
Saltash, sometimes called Essa, was a "rotten borough" in Cornwall which returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons in the English and later British Parliament from 1552 to 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.-History:...

 in the Long Parliament
Long Parliament
The Long Parliament was made on 3 November 1640, following the Bishops' Wars. It received its name from the fact that through an Act of Parliament, it could only be dissolved with the agreement of the members, and those members did not agree to its dissolution until after the English Civil War and...

, He was at first a moderate critic of King Charles I
Charles I of England
Charles I was King of England, King of Scotland, and King of Ireland from 27 March 1625 until his execution in 1649. Charles engaged in a struggle for power with the Parliament of England, attempting to obtain royal revenue whilst Parliament sought to curb his Royal prerogative which Charles...

, but gradually moved over towards the royalist side, championing the Church of England
Church of England
The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England and the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The church considers itself within the tradition of Western Christianity and dates its formal establishment principally to the mission to England by St...

 and opposing the execution of the Earl of Strafford
Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford
Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford was an English statesman and a major figure in the period leading up to the English Civil War. He served in Parliament and was a supporter of King Charles I. From 1632 to 1639 he instituted a harsh rule as Lord Deputy of Ireland...

, Charles's primary advisor. Following the Grand Remonstrance
Grand Remonstrance
The Grand Remonstrance was a list of grievances presented to King Charles I of England by the English Parliament on 1 December 1641, but passed by the House of Commons on the 22nd of November 1641, during the Long Parliament; it was one of the chief events which were to precipitate the English...

 of 1641, Hyde became an informal advisor to the King. He was disabled from sitting in parliament in 1642.

During the Civil War, Hyde served in the King's council as Chancellor of the Exchequer
Chancellor of the Exchequer
The Chancellor of the Exchequer is the title held by the British Cabinet minister who is responsible for all economic and financial matters. Often simply called the Chancellor, the office-holder controls HM Treasury and plays a role akin to the posts of Minister of Finance or Secretary of the...

, and was one of the more moderate figures in the royalist camp. By 1645 his moderation had alienated him from the King, and he was made guardian to the Prince of Wales
Charles II of England
Charles II was monarch of the three kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland.Charles II's father, King Charles I, was executed at Whitehall on 30 January 1649, at the climax of the English Civil War...

, with whom he fled to Jersey
Jersey
Jersey, officially the Bailiwick of Jersey is a British Crown Dependency off the coast of Normandy, France. As well as the island of Jersey itself, the bailiwick includes two groups of small islands that are no longer permanently inhabited, the Minquiers and Écréhous, and the Pierres de Lecq and...

 in 1646.

Hyde was not closely involved with Charles II
Charles II of England
Charles II was monarch of the three kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland.Charles II's father, King Charles I, was executed at Whitehall on 30 January 1649, at the climax of the English Civil War...

's attempts to regain the throne in 1649 to 1651. It was during this period that Hyde began to write his great history of the Civil War. Hyde rejoined the exiled king in the latter year, and soon became his chief advisor; Charles named him Lord Chancellor
Lord Chancellor
The Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain, or Lord Chancellor, is a senior and important functionary in the government of the United Kingdom. He is the second highest ranking of the Great Officers of State, ranking only after the Lord High Steward. The Lord Chancellor is appointed by the Sovereign...

 in 1658. On the restoration of the monarchy in 1660, he returned to England with the King and became even closer to the royal family
Royal family
A royal family is the extended family of a king or queen regnant. The term imperial family appropriately describes the extended family of an emperor or empress, while the terms "ducal family", "grand ducal family" or "princely family" are more appropriate to describe the relatives of a reigning...

 through the marriage of his daughter, Anne
Anne Hyde
Anne Hyde was the first wife of James, Duke of York , and the mother of two monarchs, Mary II of England and Scotland and Anne of Great Britain....

, to the king's brother James, Duke of York, the heir-presumptive (who, after the death of his first wife, would succeed to the throne as James II of England & VII of Scotland
James II of England
James II & VII was King of England and King of Ireland as James II and King of Scotland as James VII, from 6 February 1685. He was the last Catholic monarch to reign over the Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland...

). Their two daughters, Mary II
Mary II of England
Mary II was joint Sovereign of England, Scotland, and Ireland with her husband and first cousin, William III and II, from 1689 until her death. William and Mary, both Protestants, became king and queen regnant, respectively, following the Glorious Revolution, which resulted in the deposition of...

 and Queen Anne
Anne of Great Britain
Anne ascended the thrones of England, Scotland and Ireland on 8 March 1702. On 1 May 1707, under the Act of Union, two of her realms, England and Scotland, were united as a single sovereign state, the Kingdom of Great Britain.Anne's Catholic father, James II and VII, was deposed during the...

 would each one day reign in their own right.

Later years and exile


In 1660, Hyde was raised to the peerage as Baron Hyde, of Hindon
Hindon, Wiltshire
Hindon is a village and civil parish in Wiltshire, England, about west of Salisbury and south of Warminster. It is in the Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Hindon was a market town but is now a village...

 in the County of Wiltshire, and the next year was created Viscount Cornbury and Earl of Clarendon. He served as Chancellor of the University of Oxford
University of Oxford
The University of Oxford is a university located in Oxford, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest surviving university in the world and the oldest in the English-speaking world. Although its exact date of foundation is unclear, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096...

 from 1660-1667.

As Lord Chancellor, it is commonly thought that Clarendon was the author of the "Clarendon Code", designed to preserve the supremacy of the Church of England
Church of England
The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England and the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The church considers itself within the tradition of Western Christianity and dates its formal establishment principally to the mission to England by St...

. However, he was not very heavily involved with the drafting and actually disapproved of much of its content. It was merely named after him, as he was a chief minister.

In 1663, the Earl of Clarendon was one of eight Lords Proprietor
Lords Proprietor
Lords Proprietor was the name for the chief or highest owners or proprietors of certain English proprietary colonies in America, such as Carolina, New Jersey and Barbados....

 given title to a huge tract of land in North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

 which became the Province of Carolina
Province of Carolina
The Province of Carolina, originally chartered in 1629, was an English and later British colony of North America. Because the original Heath charter was unrealized and was ruled invalid, a new charter was issued to a group of eight English noblemen, the Lords Proprietors, in 1663...

. However, he began to fall out of favour with the king, and the military setbacks of the Second Anglo-Dutch War
Second Anglo-Dutch War
The Second Anglo–Dutch War was part of a series of four Anglo–Dutch Wars fought between the English and the Dutch in the 17th and 18th centuries for control over the seas and trade routes....

 of 1665 to 1667 led to his downfall. Clarendon was impeached, in part, for blatant violations of habeas corpus
Habeas corpus
is a writ, or legal action, through which a prisoner can be released from unlawful detention. The remedy can be sought by the prisoner or by another person coming to his aid. Habeas corpus originated in the English legal system, but it is now available in many nations...

; sending prisoners out of England to places like Jersey, and holding them there without benefit of trial. He was impeached by the House of Commons, and forced to flee to France in November, 1667. Clarendon was accompanied to France by his private chaplain and ally William Levett
William Levett (dean)
The Very Rev. Dr. William Levett was the Oxford-educated personal chaplain to Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon, whom he accompanied into exile in France, then became the rector of two parishes, and subsequently Principal of Magdalen Hall, Oxford and the Dean of Bristol.Levett was born in...

, later Dean of Bristol.

He spent the rest of his life in exile, working on the History of the Rebellion and Civil Wars in England, his classic account of the English Civil War
English Civil War
The English Civil War was a series of armed conflicts and political machinations between Parliamentarians and Royalists...

. (The proceeds from this book's publication were instrumental in building the Clarendon Building
Clarendon Building
The Clarendon Building is a landmark Grade I listed building in Oxford, England, owned by the University of Oxford. It was built between 1711 and 1715 to house the Oxford University Press. It stands in the centre of the city in Broad Street, near the Bodleian Library and the Sheldonian Theatre...

 at Oxford
Oxford
The city of Oxford is the county town of Oxfordshire, England. The city, made prominent by its medieval university, has a population of just under 165,000, with 153,900 living within the district boundary. It lies about 50 miles north-west of London. The rivers Cherwell and Thames run through...

.) He died in Rouen
Rouen
Rouen , in northern France on the River Seine, is the capital of the Haute-Normandie region and the historic capital city of Normandy. Once one of the largest and most prosperous cities of medieval Europe , it was the seat of the Exchequer of Normandy in the Middle Ages...

 on 9 December 1674. Shortly after his death, his body was returned to England, and he is buried in Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey
The Collegiate Church of St Peter at Westminster, popularly known as Westminster Abbey, is a large, mainly Gothic church, in the City of Westminster, London, United Kingdom, located just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. It is the traditional place of coronation and burial site for English,...

.

Family



Clarendon was grandfather to Mary II and Queen Anne, via the marriage of his daughter Anne Hyde to the future James II. Clarendon's sons, Henry Hyde, 2nd Earl of Clarendon
Henry Hyde, 2nd Earl of Clarendon
Henry Hyde 2nd Earl of Clarendon PC was an English aristocrat and politician. He held high office at the beginning of the reign of James II of England, who had married his sister.-Early life:...

, and Lawrence Hyde, 1st Earl of Rochester, were also major political figures in their own right. His third son Hon. Edward Hyde died at the age of twenty, shortly after being brought into Parliament. Clarendon's two cousins, Richard Rigby, Secretary of Jamaica and his son, Richard Rigby
Richard Rigby
Richard Rigby , was an English civil servant and politician. He served as Secretary of Ireland and Paymaster of the Forces...

, Chief Secretary of Ireland and Paymaster of the Army, were successful politicians in the succeeding generations.

Portrayals


In the film Cromwell
Cromwell (film)
Cromwell is a 1970 film, based on the life of Oliver Cromwell who led the Parliamentary forces during the English Civil War and, as Lord Protector, ruled Great Britain and Ireland in the 1650s. It features an all-star cast led by Richard Harris as Cromwell and Alec Guinness as King Charles I...

, Clarendon (called only Sir Edward Hyde in the movie), is portrayed by Nigel Stock as a sympathetic, conflicted man torn between Parliament and the King. He finally turns against him altogether when Charles I pretends to accept Cromwell's terms of peace, but secretly and treacherously plots to raise a Catholic army against Parliament and start a second civil war. Clarendon reluctantly, but bravely, gives testimony at the King's trial which is instrumental in condemning him to death.

In the 2003 BBC
BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

 TV miniseries Charles II: The Power and The Passion
Charles II: The Power and The Passion
Charles II: The Power and the Passion is an award-winning British television mini-series, broadcast on BBC One in 2003, and produced by the BBC in association with the A&E Network in the United States...

,
Clarendon was played by actor Ian McDiarmid
Ian McDiarmid
Ian McDiarmid is a Scottish theatre actor and director, who has also made sporadic appearances on film and television.McDiarmid has had a successful career in theatre; he has been cast in many plays, while occasionally directing others and although he has appeared mostly in theatrical productions,...

. The series portrayed Clarendon (referred to as 'Sir Edward Hyde' throughout) as acting in a paternalistic fashion towards Charles II, something the King comes to dislike. It is also intimated that he had arranged the marriage of Charles and Catherine of Braganza
Catherine of Braganza
Catherine of Braganza was a Portuguese infanta and queen consort of England, Scotland and Ireland as the wife of King Charles II.She married the king in 1662...

 already knowing that she was infertile so that his granddaughters through his daughter Anne Hyde (who had married the future James II) would eventually inherit the throne of England.

In the 2004 film Stage Beauty
Stage Beauty
Stage Beauty is a 2004 British-American-German romantic period drama directed by Richard Eyre. The screenplay by Jeffrey Hatcher is based on his play Compleat Female Stage Beauty, which was inspired by references to 17th century actor Edward Kynaston made in the detailed private diary kept by...

, starring Billy Crudup
Billy Crudup
William Gaither "Billy" Crudup is an American actor of film and stage. He is well known for his roles as guitarist Russell Hammond in Almost Famous, Will Bloom in Big Fish, and Ashitaka in Princess Mononoke. He also starred in the 2007 romantic comedy film Dedication, alongside Mandy Moore...

 and Claire Danes
Claire Danes
Claire Catherine Danes is an American actress of television, stage and film. She has appeared in roles as diverse as Angela Chase in My So-Called Life, as Juliet in Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet, as Kate Brewster in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, as Yvaine in Stardust and as Temple Grandin in...

, Clarendon (again referred to simply as Edward Hyde) is played by Edward Fox
Edward Fox (actor)
Edward Charles Morice Fox, OBE is an English stage, film and television actor.He is generally associated with portraying the role of the upper-class Englishman, such as the title character in the film The Day of the Jackal and King Edward VIII in the serial Edward & Mrs...

.

External links