Staunford, Sir William

, an eminent lawyer in the sixteenth century, was the son of William Staunford, of London, mercer, and the grandson of Richard Staunford of Rowley in Staffordshire. He was born in 1509, at Hadley in Middlesex, where his father had purchased some property, and had married a London lady of the name of Gedney. After studying for some time at Oxford, he applied to municipal law in Gray’s Inn, and soon acquired reputation for knowledge of his profession. In 1545, he was chosen autumn-reader to this society, but did not read until Lent following, owing, as Wood says, to the plague: the year after he was appointed attorney-general. In 1551 he was double Lent reader at Gray’s-inn, made serjeant at law the next year, and queen’s serjeant in 1553, when Mary came to the throne, as he was a zealous adherent to her religion. In 1554 he became a judge of the common-pleas, and the same year received the honour of knighthood. He died Aug. 28, 1553, and was buried in Hadley church. While both at the bar and on the bench, he was much esteemed, and obtained no small fame by his writings, which still perpetuate his name. They are 1. “Placita coronac,” in French, 4to, 1557, and often reprinted from that time to 1607. 2. “Exposition of the King’s prerogative,” printed with the former. He left also many Mss. His “Placita corona;” were published in an epitomized form, by Walter Young, Lond. 1660, 8vo. and 1663. 2


Ath. Ox. vol. I. Tanner. Fuller’s Worthies. Lloyd’s Worthies. Dodd’s Church Hist.