Oxford History: Mayors & Lord Mayors


Richard Carey (d. 1349)

Mayor of Oxford 1328/9, 1335/6, 1340/1, 1341/2, 1342/3, and 1345/6

Richard Carey (or Cary) was married to Alice, the daughter of another Mayor, William of Bicester.

Carey was elected Senior Bailiff in 1313, 1314, and 1317.

In 1322 there was a writ that Richard Carey and Gilbert de Grensted should be distrained to pay the rent they owed to the Domus Conversorum (House of Converts) at London. This was for a large building on the east side of St Aldate’s Street next to the Guildhall: the north side was known as Carey’s Inn or the Domus Conversorum, while the south was Grensted’s tenement.

Carey was first elected Mayor of Oxford for 1328/9, and was re-elected five more times, for 1335/6, 1340/1, 1341/2, 1342/3, and 1345/6. He was also elected one of the four Alderman in 1327, 1344, 1346, and 1347.

It seems likely that he is the Richard Carey who was elected Member of Parliament for Oxford in 1335 and again in 1339.

Wood records that Richard Carey gave to the Cruched Friars either lands in the parish of St Peter-in-the-East or money to purchase them.

William of Bicester entrusted his son-in-law Richard Carey with establishing a chantry in All Saints’ Church in his memory, but Carey did not have time to do this before he himself died .

† Richard Carey died of the Black Death in June 1349. He was buried in the Lady Chapel of St Martin’s Church at Carfax.

In 1896 St Martin's Church was demolished (apart from its tower), and all bones uncovered were transferred to an unknown communal grave in Holywell Cemetery.

His son John Carey set up a chantry in All Saints’ Church for Carey and his brother-in-law Nicholas of Bicester. He also set up a chantry in St Martin’s Church, and on his death in 1368 he increased the chantry from the revenues of the Domus Conversorum and of other tenements, including his father’s property Fouke Halls. Henceforth the chantry prayers included John and Hugh Carey as well as Richard.

  • Biography not yet available on the History of Parliament website

©Stephanie Jenkins

Last updated: 16 November, 2020

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