Cromwell, Edward, third Baron Cromwell 1559?-1607, politician, born about 1559, was the son of Henry, second lord Cromwell, by his wife Mary, daughter of John Paulet, second marquis of Winchester. His grandfather, Gregory, son of the famous Thomas Cromwell, Henry VIII's minister [qv.], was created Baron Cromwell on 18 Dec. 1540. Cromwell spent some time at Jesus College, Cambridge, as the pupil of Richard Bancroft [qv.], afterwards archbishop, but did not matriculate. He was created M.A. in 1593. In 1591 he acted as colonel in the English army under Essex, sent to aid Henri IV in Normandy (Camden Miscellany, i. Siege of Rouen, p. 10), and on his father's death in 1592 succeeded to his peerage. Cromwell served as a volunteer in the naval expedition against Spain of 1597, sued hard — for the government of the Brill in 1598, and accompanied Essex to Ireland in 1599 in the vain hope of becoming marshal of the army there. In August 1599 it was reported that he had defeated a rebel force of six thousand men, but at the end of the month he was in London again. After the futile attempt of Essex in January 1600-1601 to raise an insurrection in London, Cromwell was arrested and sent to the Tower. He and Lord Sandys were brought for trial to Westminster Hall on 5 March. Cromwell confessed his guilt, was ordered to pay a fine of 6,000l., and was released and pardoned on 9 July 1601. On James I's accession he was sworn of the privy council, but soon afterwards disposed of his English property to Charles Blount, lord Mountjoy, and settled in Ireland. On 13 Sept. 1605 Cromwell made an agreement with an Irish chief, Phelim McCartan, to receive a large part of the McCartan's territory in county Down on condition of educating and providing for the chief's son. On 4 Oct. following McCartan and Cromwell by arrangement resigned their estates to the king, who formally regranted them to the owners, and Cromwell was at the same time made governor of Lecale. He died in September 1607, and was buried in Down Cathedral. Sir Arthur Chichester, when writing of his death to the council, 29 Sept. 1607, states he regrets his loss, both for his majesty's service and for the poor estate wherein he left his wife and children. Cromwell married twice. By his first wife, who was named Umpton, he had a daughter, Elizabeth, and by his second wife, Frances, daughter of William Rugge of Felmingham, Norfolk, a son, Thomas, and two daughters, Frances and Anne.
Thomas, fourth Baron Cromwell, whom Chichester describes in youth as very towardly and of good hope, was created Viscount Lecale (22 Nov. 1624) and Earl of Ardglass (1645) in the Irish peerage. He was a staunch royalist, and died in 1653.
Edward Cromwell's mother married, after her first husband's death, Richard Wingfield, marshal of Ireland, first viscount Powerscourt.
Cooper's Athenæ Cantab. ii. 473
Burke's Extinct Peerage
Chamberlain's Letters, temp. Eliz. (Camd. Soc.)
Sir Robert Cecil's Letters (Camd. Soc.)
Devereux's Lives of the Earls of Essex, vol. ii.
Cal. State Papers (Domestic and Irish, 1603-8).
Contributor: S. L. [Sidney Lee]