Thomas Egerton, 1st Viscount Brackley

Thomas Egerton, 1st Viscount Brackley

Thomas Egerton, 1st Viscount Brackley

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Thomas Egerton, 1st Viscount Brackley PC (1540 – 15 March 1617) was an English Nobleman, Judge and Statesman who served as Lord Keeper and Lord Chancellor for twenty-one years.

Early life, education and legal career

Thomas Egerton was born in 1540 in the parish of Doddlestone, Cheshire. He was the illegitimate son of Sir Richard Egerton and an unmarried woman named Alice Sparks. He was acknowledged by his father’s family, who paid for his education. He studied Liberal Arts at Brasenose College, Oxford, and received a Bachelor’s Degree in 1559. He then studied law at Lincoln's Inn and became a barrister. He was a Roman Catholic, until a point in 1570 when his lack of conformity with the Church of England when his Inn passed on a complaint from the Privy Council. Norman Leslie Jones, The English Reformation: Religion and Cultural Adaptation (2002), p. 153.

He built a respectable legal practice pleading cases in the Courts of Queen’s Bench, Chancery and Exchequer. After Queen Elizabeth I saw him plead a case against the crown he was made Queen’s Counsel. In 1579 he was made a Master of the Bench of Lincoln’s Inn. On 28 June 1581 he was appointed Solicitor General. He married Elizabeth Ravenscroft and fathered two sons and a daughter by her.

Solicitor General, Attorney General and Master of the Rolls

As Solicitor General, Egerton became a frequent legal advocate...
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