Stephen Marshall
Field: Priest
Location in the Abbey: St Margaret's Church
Type of memorial: Tablet

Stephen Marshall, clergyman, was buried in the south transept of Westminster Abbey on 23 November 1655 but his body was exhumed, together with other followers of Oliver Cromwell, in 1661 and buried in a pit in the adjoining St Margaret's churchyard. In 1966 an inscription was cut into the wall of the west tower of this church recording the 21 names of those who were disinterred at the Restoration of Charles II.

In 1880 a grey marble stone, under the monument to Thomas Triplet in the south transept, was put in to commemorate Marshall and three other preachers of the Cromwellian period. This reads:

"Near this spot were buried William Twisse D.D. 1646, prolocutor of the Westminster Assembly. Thomas May 1650, translator of Lucan and secretary to the Long Parliament. William Strong 1654. Stephen Marshall 1655 Parliamentary preachers. These were removed by Royal Warrant 1661".

He was born at Godmanchester in Huntingdon and educated there and at Cambridge. In 1619 he was ordained and became vicar at Finchingfield in Essex. He married Elizabeth (nee Castell) a widow. Their only son drowned and they had six daughters of whom Elizabeth married John Nye and Mary married Thomas Langham. Daughter Susan was unmarried when she proved his will. Marshall became a preacher to the House of Commons and one of the ministers at St Margaret's Westminster. He was well known for his sermons and preached in the Abbey and at St Paul's cathedral. He was chaplain to a regiment which fought at the battle of Edgehill and was a member of the Westminster Assembly of Divines. He died on 19 November 1655 in Ipswich and was given a fine funeral in the Abbey.

A photo of his stone in the Abbey can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library.

Further reading:

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2004.

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