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St. John, Viscount Oliver

St. John, Viscount Oliver

Male Abt 1559 - 1630

Personal Information    |    Media    |    Notes    |    All    |    PDF

  • Title  Viscount 
    Born  Abt 1559  Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender  Male 
    Buried  29 Dec 1630  Battersea, Surrey, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID  I01317  My Genealogy
    Last Modified  16 Jun 2015 

    Father  St. John, Nicholas,   b. Abt 1523, Of Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   bur. 8 Nov 1589, Lydiard Tregoze, Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Mother  Blount, Elizabeth,   b. Abt 1531, Of Mapledurham, Oxfordshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   bur. 11 Aug 1587, Lydiard Tregoze, Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married  Abt 1550  England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID  F00104  Group Sheet

    Family  Roydon, Joan,   b. Abt 1575, Battersea, Surrey, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   bur. 10 Mar 1631, Battersea, Surrey, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married  Abt 1600  England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID  F00546  Group Sheet

  • Photos
    Oliver St John, 1st Viscount Grandison
    Oliver St John, 1st Viscount Grandison
    Oil on panel by Cornelius Johnson

  • Notes 
    • Lord Deputy, then Lord High Treasurer of Ireland under Charles 1 and James 1.
      About 1620/23 he was created Viscount Grandison.


      Will of Oliver St John.
      PRO 159 Folio 1 1630:

      Sir Oliver St. John, Knight, Viscount Grandison and Lord Tregoze to be buried at Battrichsey under monumental inscription for me and my wife there Dame Joane, Viscountess Grandison my wife manor house at Battrichsey nephew Sir John St. John, knight and baronet Henry, Lord Docura shall be seised of my lands in Ireland godsons John St. John, 2nd son of my nephew Sir John St. John, Henry St. John son-in-law Sir Henry Holecroft, Knt Sir William Slingsby, Knt, Sir Ffrancis Leigh Sir Henry St. George and John Awsrey overseers.


      Battersea...After the dissolution of monasteries, the manor was reserved in the hands of the crown; a lease of it was granted to Henry Roydon (fn. 8) , Esq. by queen Elizabeth, for twenty-one years, .... it was afterwards granted for the same term to his daughter, then Joan Holcroft (fn. 9)... An. 1610 (fn. 10) . In the year 1627, it was granted in reversion to Oliver St. John, Viscount Grandison (fn. 11).

      Lord Grandison died in 1630, and was succeeded in that title, and in the Battersea estate, by William Villiers, his great-nephew, who died of a wound received at the siege of Bristol, An. 1644. Sir John St. John, Bart. nephew of the first lord Grandison, inherited Battersea; from him it passed in a regular descent to Sir Walter St. John, Bart. his nephew; to Sir Walter's son, Henry Viscount St. John; and to his grandson Henry Viscount Bolingbrooke, who, by an act of parliament passed before his father's death, was enabled to inherit his estate, notwith standing his attainder: the estate and manor continued in the St. John family till 1763, ...From: 'Battersea', The Environs of London: volume 1: County of Surrey (1792), pp. 26-48. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.asp?compid=45371. Date accessed: 20 July 2007.


      St. John family.
      Battersea was long the residence, as well as the property, of the St. Johns; and many of the births, deaths, and marriages of that family are recorded in the parish register;
      "The Lord Oliver St. John, buried Jan. 12. 1630-1."
      "The Ladie Grandison, her name Jone, buried Mar. 10. 1630-1."

      Oliver St. John, Viscount Grandison.
      Oliver St. John was the first of the family who settled at Battersea; he married Joan, daughter and heir of Henry Roydon Esq. of that place, and widow of Sir William Holcroft. He was general of the forces in Ireland, and was lord high treasurer, and lord deputy of that realm; was created Viscount Grandison, of Ireland, by James I.; and in 1626, was made an English peer, by the title of Baron St. John: he died without issue. A monument to his memory, is fixed in the north wall of the church, ornamented with busts of himself and his lady, in white marble; over which are the arms and quarterings of St. John (fn. 32) impaling Roydon (fn. 33) , underneath is the following inscription:

      "Deo trino and uno facrum
      Olivero Nicholai Sct. John de Lydeard filio secundo eq. aurato antiquissimis et illustribus de Bellocampo, de Bletsoe, Grandisonis et Tregoziæ familiis oriundo. Terra marique, domi, forisque, belli pacisque artibus egregio, divæ Elizabethæ, e nobilissima pensionariorum cohorte, suis inde meritis et singulari divi Jacobi gratia, in Hibernia instrumentis bellicis præfecto, Conaciæ Pro-præside et Quæstori summo et Regis vicario, Procomiti de Grandisonis et Tregoziæ, de Hyworth, in Anglia, Baroni, eidem divo Jacobo et filio ejus piissimo a secretioribus et sanctioribus conciliis. Postquam is annos honoribus æquaverat et tranquillissime senuerat somnienti similiter extincto, Johannes de Sanct. John Eques et Baronettus ac fratre nepos et hæres avunculo mærentissimo mæstissimus p. in ecclesia de Battersey.
      "Vixit annos 70. Mor. 29 Decembris 1630."

      Funeral of Sir John St. John.
      In 1648, Sir John St. John (the nephew as I imagine of Lord Grandison (fn. 34) ) was buried at Battersea with such unusual pomp, that it excited the attention of the heralds, who commenced a prosecution against Mr. Walter St. John the executor, for acting so contrary to the usage of arms and the laws of heraldry.

      In the British Museum (fn. 35) is a MS. deposition of William Riley, one of the heralds, who declares, that the funeral of the deceased was conducted in a manner so much above his degree, that the escutcheons were more than were used at the funeral of a duke; and that he never saw so many pennons but at the funeral of one of the blood royal; and that he considered such a precedent to be destructive of all distinction, order, and degree of honour and nobility. The burial of Sir John St. John is omitted in the Register.

      "Sir Walter St. John, Bart. æt. 87, buried July 9, 1708."

      Sir Walter St. John.
      Sir Walter St. John, the third baronet of the family, succeeded his nephew Sir John, who died before he came of age. Sir Walter married one of the daughters of lord chief justice St. John: he was eminent for piety and moral virtues. The parish of Battersea is indebted to him for the foundation of a free-school, which he endowed in the year 1700 for twenty poor boys, and to which both he and his lady left farther sums towards apprenticing some of them. A portrait of Sir Walter is preserved in the school-room.

      "Henry, the son of Mr. Walter St. John, baptized Oct. 17, 1652."
      "The Right Honorable Henry Lord Viscount St. John, buried April 16, 1742."

      Henry Viscount St. John.
      This was the father of Lord Bolingbroke. In 1684, being then Mr. Henry St. John, he was tried for the murder of Sir William Estcourt, Bart. and was convicted. ..accordingly: but to his cost found, that his pardon was to be purchased at the high rate of 16,000 l.; one half of which the king converted to his own use; and bestowed the remainder upon two ladies who were in great favor. .... the king granted him only a reprieve; in confirmation of this, no pardon appears to have been enrolled (fn. 38): the reprieve was for a long term of years, which the extreme old age which he attained rendered it probable that he would survive. In 1716 he was created Baron St. John of Battersea, and Viscount St. John, and died in 1742, as mentioned above, on the verge of ninety.

      "Henry, son of Henry St. John, Esq. baptized Oct. 10, 1678."
      "Henry St. John, late Lord Viscount Bolingbroke, buried December 18, 1751."
      Lord Bolingbroke.

      These dates will serve to correct an inaccuracy in the Life of Lord Bolingbroke, in which it is asserted, that he died at the age of seventy-nine (fn. 39); this has led the editors of the Biographia (fn. 40) into an error, and has induced them to fix the date of his birth in 1672. They are inaccurate likewise in saying that his lady died many years before him, as will appear both by her epitaph, and the entry of her burial, in the register. Upon the death of his father, lord Bolingbroke became possessed of the paternal estate at Battersea, ... He died December 12th, 1751 (fn. 42) . His second wife was widow of the Marquis de Villette, and niece of the celebrated Mad. de Maintenon. She died a short time before her husband, and lies buried in the same vault with him in Battersea church; where, on the north wall, is a monument to their memory by Roubiliac, of grey and black marble: the upper part is ornamented with lord Bolingbroke's arms (fn. 43) . The inscription is on a black tablet, on each side of which are medallions with profiles in basso-relievo of lord and lady Bolingbroke, well executed, in white marble. The inscription is as follows:

      "Here lies
      Henry St. John,
      In the reign of Queen Anne,
      Secretary of War Secretary of State,
      And Viscount Bolingbroke:
      In the days of King George the first and King George the second,
      Something more and better.
      His attachment to Queen Anne,
      Exposed him to a long and severe persecution;
      He bore it with firmness of mind,
      The enemy of no national party,
      The friend of no faction;
      Distinguished (under the cloud of a proscription,
      which had not been entirely taken off)
      By zeal to maintain the liberty,
      And to restore the ancient prosperity,
      of Great Britain.
      He died the 12th of December,
      1751, aged 73."

      "In the same vault
      are interred, the remains of
      Mary Clara des Champs de Marcelly,
      Marchioness of Villette, and Viscountess
      Bolingbroke, of a noble family,
      bred in the court of Lewis 14th.
      She reflected a lustre on the former,
      by the superior accomplishments of her mind;
      She was an ornament to the latter,
      by the amiable dignity and grace of her behaviour.
      She lived, the honour of her own sex,
      the delight and admiration of ours
      : She dyed, an object of imitation to both:
      With all the firmness that reason,
      With all the resignation that religion,
      Can inspire.
      Aged 74 the 18th of March,
      1750."

      The last of the St. John family that was buried at Battersea, was an infant daughter of Lord Bolingbroke in 1762.

      Bolingbroke House.
      In 1763 the estate was alienated; and about fifteen years ago, the greater part of Bolingbroke-house was pulled down: ...: From: 'Battersea', The Environs of London: volume 1: County of Surrey (1792), pp. 26-48. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.asp?compid=45371. Date accessed: 20 July 2007.

      See DNB Article:

      St. John, Oliver, Viscount Grandison and Baron Tregoz 1559-1630, lord deputy of Ireland, born in 1559, was the second son of Nicholas St. John (d. 1589) of Lydiard-Tregoz (or Liddiard Tregoze, as it is now spelt), Wiltshire, by his wife Elizabeth (d. 1587), daughter of Sir Richard Blount of Mapledurham, Oxfordshire. His mother was distantly related to Charles Blount, earl of Devonshire [q.v.], and on the father's side he was descended through a female line from the Grandisons (see G.E.C.'s Complete Peerage), and was related to the St. Johns, barons of Bletsho [see St. John, Oliver, first Earl of Bolingbroke]. The future lord deputy was educated at Oxford, matriculating from Trinity College on 20 Dec. 1577 as a commoner, and graduating B.A. on 26 June 1578. He adopted the legal profession, and in 1580 was admitted a student of Lincoln's Inn. ....