William Sutton (lawyer)

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William Sutton (c.1410 - 1480) was an Irish judge who served briefly as Attorney General for Ireland and then for many years as a Baron of the Court of Exchequer (Ireland). He was the father of Nicholas Sutton, who followed the same career path, but died young.[1]

Background and career[edit]

William was the son of Roger Sutton of St. Werburgh's Street, Dublin.[2] He was appointed Attorney General about 1444 and a Baron of the Exchequer in 1445; despite a complaint that he was about to be superseded in 1462, together with a plea to Parliament to pay his arrears of salary, he was still on the Bench in 1477. He was an associate of Richard of York during York's tenure as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.[3]

Family and last years[edit]

William married Alison Darby. He died in 1480; Nicholas had predeceased him and his daughter-in-law had remarried.[4] This may explain his decision to leave all his lands and a large monetary bequest to Christchurch Cathedral, Dublin;[5] despite his pleas for payment of his salary in the 1460s, he seems to have amassed considerable wealth in later years.

His son's will, which no longer exists, has been described as containing some "curious details", including a legacy to William in return for his blessing.[6]


  1. ^ Ball, F. Elrington The Judges in Ireland 1221-1921 John Murray London 1926 Vol.1 p.179
  2. ^ Ball p.179
  3. ^ Ball p.179
  4. ^ Balll p.183
  5. ^ Ball p.179
  6. ^ Ball p.103