, lord keeper of the great seal of England in the reign of Charles
, lord keeper of the great seal of England in the reign of Charles I. was descended, by a collateral branch, from the preceding judge Littleton, being grandson of John Littleton, parson of Mouuslow in Shropshire, and son of sir Edward Littleton of Henley in that county, one of the justices of the inarches, and judge of North Wales. He was born in 1589, and admitted a gentleman commoner of Christchurch, Oxford, in 1606, where he took the degree of bachelor of arts in 1609. Some time after, being designed for the law by his father, he removed to the InnerTemple, and soon became eminent in his profession. In 1628, we find him in parliament; and on the 6th of May he was appointed, together with sir Edward Coke and sir Dudley Digges, to carry up the petition of right to the house of lords. He had also the management of the charge made against the duke of Buckingham, concerning king James’s death; on which occasion he behaved himself with universal applause, although he had to consult both the jealousy of the people and the honour of the court. His first preferment in the law was the appointment to succeed his father as a Welch judge; after which he was elected recorder of London, and about the same time counsel for the university of Oxford. In 1632, he was chosen summer-reader of the Inner-Temple, and in 1634, appointed solicitor-general, and received the honour of knighthood in 1635. In 1639, he was constituted lord chief-justice of the common-pleas; and, in 1640, on the flight of lord-keeper Finch from the resentment of the parliament, the great seal was put into his custody, with the same title. In February following, he was created a peer of England, by the title of lord Littleton, baron of Mounslow in Shropshire.