Richard Tufton

In the south ambulatory of Westminster Abbey is a monument of black and white marble, with an oval recess in which is a bust, to Richard Tufton. Above the bust two arms issue from clouds and hold a wreath and on either side is an Ionic column with a cartouche of arms between the reclining figures of Mercury and Mars. Richard was buried in the Abbey on 6th October 1631. The monument is attributed to William Wright and was erected by Richard's brother Humphrey. The inscription reads:

Here lieth the body of Richard Tufton, Esq. third sonne of Sr. John Tufton of Hothfeild in Kent, Knight and Baronet, by Christian Browne his wife, one of the daughtrs. & coheires of Sr. Humfry Browne, Knight, one of ye Justices of Ye Common Pleas & Anne his wife, daughter of John Lord Hussy & the Lady Anne his wife, daughter to George, Earle of Kent. Which Sr. John Tufton left issue married by the aforesaid Christian his wife, Nicholas Baron of Tufton & Earle of Thanet, Humfry Tufton, Knight, the aforesaid Richard Tufton, & William Tufton, Baronet of Ireland, Cicely Countesse of Rutland & Mary Viscountess of Dunbarre, the rest died unmarried. This Richard married Chrisogon youngest daughter & coheire of Herbert Morly of Gline [Glynde] in Sussex, Esq, the other daughter of the said Morly being Margaret & ye eldest was married unto Sr. Humfry Tufton before named who occasioned this monument to be erected in memory of his brother Mr Richard Tufton, who departed this mortail life, leaving issue John, Mary & Christian, the fourth of October Ano. Dni. 1631.

The coat of arms includes that for Tufton "sable an eagle displayed ermine within a bordure argent, a mullet for difference".

His sister Cicely, wife of Francis 6th Earl of Rutland, was buried nearby in St Nicholas' chapel in 1653 but she has no memorial. His great granddaughter Anne (daughter of Sir Richard Tufton) was buried in the cloisters on 12th June 1679 (no marker remains).

Richard lived in Tothill Street, Westminster and he built Tufton Street, which is located just outside the Abbey precinct. Three of his four children were baptised in St Margaret's Westminster - Richard baptised 5th March 1625 (died young) and Christian baptised 18th October 1627. Mary married Sir Robert Huddlestone. The eldest son was John, baptised on 10th June 1622, who married Frances, daughter of Sir George Chute. He died 24th January 1650. Their children were Richard (knighted in 1681) who married Margaret Lewis, and Anna baptised at St Margaret’s on 6th February 1650. 

Many of the Earl of Thanet’s family are buried at Rainham in Kent.

Further reading

"Memoirs of the Family of Tufton, Earls of Thanet", by R. Pocock, 1800

His will is at the City of Westminster Archives Centre

History of Parliament online


4th October 1631


6th October 1631


South Ambulatory

Memorial Type

Plaque; bust

Material Type


Richard Tufton
Richard Tufton monument

This image can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library

Image © 2024 Dean and Chapter of Westminster