Nicholas Exton, Mayor of London

Born: Unknown

Died: 1402

Exton in History

Nicholas Exton was a major player in the fish market of London for a majority of the latter half of the fourteenth century. He quarreled with Mayor John Northampton, who felt that prices of goods should be lowered to bring about more market competition, and sided with Northampton's enemy, Nicholas Brembre, a future mayor of London (1383-86). Exton enjoyed considerable influence while his friend and ally held the post of mayor, and Exton himself was elected to the post in 1386, serving until 1388. Unfortunately, Exton's tenure as mayor came at a time when the political climate was extremely hostile, and he had to choose between Richard II and the royal party and the lords appellant who opposed them. The mayor did his best to remain neutral in the situation, while keeping his loyalties towards the king, but he allowed the appellants access into London after their victory over the royal party at Radcot Bridge. At the subsequent Merciless Parliament, where the appellants destroyed all of the king's favorites, Exton's friend Nicholas Brembre was executed for treason, and Exton himself had to receive a pardon for his preferment in the king's eyes. He was replaced as mayor of London (1388) and lived the rest of his life in quiet retirement, dying in 1402.

Exton in Woodstock

Nicholas Exton, mayor of London, appears briefly within Thomas of Woodstock where he is asked by Woodstock to look out for his safety and that of his brothers, after an attempted murder against them by the royal favorites.


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