Open main menu

Sir John Suckling (1569 – 27 March 1627) was an English politician who sat in the House of Commons at various times between 1601 and 1627.

Roos hall, Suffolk - bought by Suckling in 1600

Suckling was the son of Robert Suckling, mayor of Norwich and MP for the city's constituency between 1571-1572 and 1586-1588, and his wife Elizabeth Barwick, daughter of William Barwick. He entered Gray's Inn on 22 May 1590.[1] He was elected Member of Parliament for Dunwich in 1601.[2]

In 1602 he was acting as secretary to the Lord High Treasurer, Sir Robert Cecil, and in December 1604 he became receiver of fines on alienations, in succession to Sir Arthur Aty. In 1614 he was elected MP for Reigate.[2] He was knighted by James I at Theobalds on 22 January 1616.[3] In February 1619 he became a Master of Requests, and in 1622 he was appointed comptroller of the royal household, "paying well for the post." Suckling had become wealthy and accumulated manors, fee-farms, and advowsons in various parts of the country. In September 1621 he was mentioned as Sir Richard Weston's most serious competitor for the chancellorship of the exchequer and in March 1622 he was promoted to be secretary of state. Charles I, upon his accession three years later, created him a privy councillor.[1]

Alabaster monument (circa 1611) to Sir John Suckling (politician)

In 1624 he was elected MP for Middlesex, Lichfield and Kingston upon Hull and chose to sit for Middlesex. In 1625 he represented Yarmouth (IoW) after Edward Clarke opted to sit for Hythe. In 1626 he was elected MP for Norwich and for Sandwich; he chose to sit for Norwich.[2] Suckling married Martha Cranfield, daughter of Thomas Cranfield of London, and sister of Lionel Cranfield, 1st Earl of Middlesex. She died on 28 October 1613, aged 35. By her, he was the father of the poet Sir John Suckling. A monument of Sir John Suckling, his first wife, Martha, and family, can be seen in St Andrew's Church, Norwich.

He then married Jane Hawkins, widow of Charles Hawkins and originally of the Suffolk family of Reve or Reeve. His widow took as her third husband Sir Edwin Rich, of Mulbarton, Norfolk and on the default of her stepson carried into that family the estate of Roos Hall near Beccles Suffolk which Suckling had acquired in 1600 as his residence.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Dictionary of National Biography
  2. ^ a b c Willis, Browne (1750). Notitia Parliamentaria, Part II: A Series or Lists of the Representatives in the several Parliaments held from the Reformation 1541, to the Restoration 1660 ... London. pp. onepage&q&f&#61, false 229–239.
  3. ^ Knights of England
Parliament of England
Preceded by
Arthur Atye
Clipsby Gawdy
Member of Parliament for Dunwich
With: Francis Myngate
Succeeded by
Thomas Smythe
Philip Gawdy
Preceded by
Sir Edward Howard
Herbert Pelham
Member of Parliament for Reigate
With: Sir Edward Howard
Succeeded by
Thomas Glemham
Robert Lewis
Preceded by
Sir Francis Darcy
Sir Gilbert Gerard, Bt
Member of Parliament for Middlesex
With: Sir Gilbert Gerard, Bt
Succeeded by
Sir John Franklyn
Sir Gilbert Gerard, Bt
Preceded by
Thomas Risley
William Beeston
Member of Parliament for Yarmouth (IoW)
With: John Oglander
Succeeded by
Sir Edward Conway
Sir John Oglander
Preceded by
William Denny
Sir Thomas Hyrne
Member of Parliament for Norwich
With: Sir Thomas Hyrne
Succeeded by
Sir Peter Gleane
Robert Debney