Ladies-in-Waiting: Elizabeth, Countess of Lincoln

elizabeth fitzgerald countess lincoln
Portrait of Lady Elizabeth FitzGerald, Countess of Lincoln, known as “The Fair Geraldine” (1527-1589), second daughter by his second wife of the 9th Earl of Kildare. After Master of Countess of Warwick.

Lady Elizabeth FitzGerald, Countess of Lincoln (1527 – March 1590) was the daughter of Gerald “Gearóid Óg” FitzGerald, 9th Earl of Kildare, Lord Deputy of Ireland, and his second wife, Lady Elizabeth Grey. By her mother, she was a great-granddaughter of Queen consort Elizabeth Woodville and Lady Katherine Neville; sister of “Warwick, the Kingmaker”.

Her father was a prisoner in The Tower of London. In 1533, as a young girl, she came to England with her mother. In 1537, her half-brother and five uncles were executed at Tyburn for their part in the uprising and rebellion against King Henry VIII. At the time, Elizabeth was sent to the household of Lady Mary Tudor, eldest daughter of Henry VIII, at Hunsdon. Her younger brothers were sent to be raised alongside Prince Edward; heir to the throne.

When Elizabeth was eleven or twelve, the Earl of Surrey (Henry Howard) decided to write a poem about her–probably to improve her chances at marrying. Truth being that Elizabeth was an impoverished, Irish born gentlewoman who depended upon the welfare of The Tudors to improve her lot in life. The poem that is believed to be written about “Fair Geraldine” reads:

From Tuscane came my lady’s worthy race ;
Fair Florence was sometime her ancient seat.
The western isle whose pleasant shore doth face
Wild Camber’s cliffs, did give her lively heat.
Foster’d she was with milk of Irish breast :
Her sire an Earl, her dame of Prince’s blood.
From tender years, in Britain doth she rest,
With Kinges child ; where she tasteth costly food.
Hunsdon did first present her to mine eyen :
Bright is her hue, and Geraldine she hight.
Hampton me taught to wish her first for mine ;
And Windsor, alas ! doth chase me from her sight.
Her beauty of kind ; her virtues from above ;
Happy is he that may obtain her love!.

In 1543, Elizabeth married Sir Anthony Browne of Cowdray Park, son of Sir Anthony and Lady Lucy Neville, daughter of Sir John Neville, 1st Marquess of Montagu; brother to “Warwick, the Kingmaker”. As such, the two were cousins. This marriage also made Elizabeth aunt to another lady-in-waiting of Queen Katherine Parr, Lucy, Lady Latimer. Elizabeth was Browne’s second wife. With this marriage, Elizabeth took on the raising of stepchildren. Her stepdaughter, Mabel Browne, would marry Elizabeth’s brother, Gerald, 11th Earl of Kildare and become Countess of Kildare. His other daughter, Lucy, would marry a grandson of Sir Thomas More, Thomas Roper.

Anthony Browne’s mother had been previously married to Sir Thomas FitzWilliam and was thus a half brother to Sir William FitzWilliam, later Earl of Southampton. FitzWilliam had been an executor of Lady Maud Parr’s will. The FitzWilliam family was kin to the Parr family.

Browne’s career at court started around 1518. His career somewhat resembled that of his half-brother, William FitzWilliam. However, since the age of ten, William had been brought up in the household of Henry VIII. Browne probably owed his career at court to his mother who had been a niece of “Warwick, the Kingmaker”. Browne became friends with people such as Sir Thomas Boleyn. He had probably been previously acquainted with Sir Thomas Parr, who’s mother was also a niece of Warwick. Sadly, Parr died in 1517 cancelling any chances of becoming a greater Tudor statesman. Browne went to France where he spent time with Boleyn. By 1519, he was recalled to England. In his youth he took to jousting and was at the Field of the Cloth of Gold where he distinguished himself as a fine jouster. He became Ambassador to France in 1527 and as he spent more time at the court, his antipathy grew towards the French. He took part in the suppression of the Northern Rebellion. In 1538, Lady Margaret of Clarence, Countess of Salisbury was imprisoned at Cowdray until September 1539. Margaret was the last Plantagenet from the House of York. She had been the niece of Edward IV and Richard III, and cousin to Browne, by his mother, as Margaret descended from Warwick. Browne was then part of the commission that questioned Queen Catherine Howard after her supposed infidelities had been made known to the King. Browne even had hand written evidence given to him by one of the Queen’s ladies. He examined the Duchess of Norfolk on Catherine’s previous relations and was part of the commission that tried Dereham and Culpepper at Guildhall. By 1542, he had been appointed Captain of the gentlemen pensioners. In 1543, Browne was an attendant at the wedding of Henry VIII to his sixth and final wife, the Dowager Lady Latimer (Katherine Parr). In 1544, he served under Norfolk in the French War. In the defensive wars of 1545 and 1546, he was securing coastal defenses and advising the Earl of Hertford’s on troops and other such things. In 1547, Browne took part in the trial of the Earl of Surrey and questioned the Duke of Norfolk; of which he had been well acquainted.

Upon the death of Sir Anthony on 28 April 1548, Elizabeth joined the household of the Dowager Queen Katherine (Parr) at Chelsea. At this point, Katherine had married Lord Seymour and the two were living together. It is said, at this point, that Elizabeth renewed her friendship with Lady Elizabeth Tudor, who was also living with the Queen. However, Elizabeth Tudor would later be sent away from the household after the Queen would discover what her husband’s real intentions for Elizabeth were. So it’s not known how much time the two actually spent together.

Edward Fiennes Clinton, 1st Earl of Lincoln
“Edward Clinton, Earl of Lincoln, 1584”, portrait by unknown artist, National Portrait Gallery, London, NPG 900

In 1552, Elizabeth married to Edward Clinton, 9th Baron Clinton who was later created Earl of Lincoln. Elizabeth was the third wife of Lord Clinton. By his previous wives he had, had children and once again, Elizabeth would take on the role of stepmother. One stepdaughter was Katherine Clinton, who married William Burgh, who became the 2nd Baron Burgh. William was the younger brother to Queen Katherine Parr’s first husband, Sir Edward Burgh. Another stepdaughter, Frances, would marry to Giles Brydges, 3rd Baron Chandos of Sudeley Castle; where Queen Katherine Parr is buried.

Edward Clinton was the son of Thomas, 8th Baron Clinton and Jane Poynings. His stepfather was Sir Robert Wingfield, who was a nephew of Elizabeth Wingfield, grandmother of Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk. He married firstly to Elizabeth Blount, the mistress of King Henry VIII and mother to Henry Fitzroy, Duke of Richmond in 1534. As such, there was a connection to the Parr family as Elizabeth Blount had been a lady to Queen Katherine of Aragon with Lady Maud Parr and Parr’s son, William, grew up in the household of Fitzroy. The two families were no doubt close to each other. After the death of Elizabeth, Clinton married secondly to Ursula Stourton, a niece of John Dudley, later Duke of Northumberland. By Ursula, Clinton had further issue, including his male heir.

Clinton became the 9th Lord Clinton upon his father’s death. He appears in history when King Henry VIII took on Boulogne, France in 1532. Lord Clinton took part in the suppression of the Northern Rebellion in 1536. Certain land holdings of the Abbeys were leased to Clinton, but later give to the King’s brother-in-law, the Duke of Suffolk. When the Duke of Richmond died in 1536, Clinton took on the role of Admiral of England. At that time, his wife, Elizabeth Blount, returned to court as a lady to Anne of Cleves. She would die shortly after. His next wife, Ursula, would take Elizabeth’s place at court as the new Lady Clinton. Clinton would serve in the Royal Navy from 1544-1547. He was knighted in 1544 by Edward, Earl of Hertford. Like Elizabeth FitzGerald’s former husband, Clinton also served Henry VIII in the siege of Boulougne in 1544 while Queen Katherine Parr was Regent of England. Clinton was appointed Governor of Bolougne in 1547 and defended the city against French attacks from 1549-50.

Later on in life, Elizabeth and her husband were involved in the plot to raise Lady Jane Grey to Queen, but like other nobility–they distanced themselves enough to prove to be loyal to Queen Mary. The pardon probably came from Clinton’s willingness to suppress the Wyatt Rebellion. Elizabeth may have also been remembered from her days in Mary’s household and was thus excused from her part in the charade. Others were not so fortunate. For example — Sir William Parr, Marquess of Northampton (brother to the late Queen) was not excused and was sent to The Tower. Anne Parr’s husband, however, who had married his daughter to Lady Jane’s sister, immediately annulled the union and they gained favor with Queen Mary again.

Elizabeth_FitzGerald

When Queen Mary died, her half sister, Elizabeth, became Queen. Elizabeth took on Elizabeth, Lady Clinton, as a lady-in-waiting and the two became good friends. However, Elizabeth got into some sort of trouble with the Queen and was accused of “frailty” and “forgetfulness of her duty”. The charges against Elizabeth were made by Archbishop Parker who also declared that she should be “chastised in Bridewell”. Historian, David Starkey, concludes that Parker thought Elizabeth was a strumpet.

Under the rule of Elizabeth, Lord Clinton continued his role as Lord High Admiral from 1559-1585. In 1569, Elizabeth used her husband’s position as Lord Admiral to seize a ship that had been stolen. The man involved was arrested and Elizabeth kept the ship and cargo. In 1572, Lord Clinton stifled the Rising of the North brought about by the Earls of Northumberland and Westmorland. For his service, Lord Clinton was created Earl of Lincoln.

Clinton Fiennes 1st Earl of Lincoln
Edward Clinton, (1512–1585) 1st Earl of Lincoln, 9th Baron Clinton KG. Source: European Heraldry

Clinton died in 1585. In his will, he left the bulk of his estates to his wife for life.

Elizabeth, Countess of Lincoln died in 1590. She was buried in St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, Windsor, UK, with her second husband, the Earl of Lincoln.

Links

Sources

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Ladies-in-Waiting: Lucy, Lady Latimer

Lucy Somerset Lady Latimer
Effigy of Lucy (née Somerset), Lady Latimer in Hackney Parish Church by Unknown artist, hand-coloured etching, early 19th century, 8 3/8 in. x 5 1/4 in. (212 mm x 132 mm) paper size. Purchased with help from the Friends of the National Libraries and the Pilgrim Trust, 1966 Reference Collection NPG D43022

Lady Lucy Somerset, Baroness Latimer (c.1524 – 23 February 1583) was an English noblewoman and the daughter of Henry Somerset, 2nd Earl of Worcester and his second wife, Elizabeth Browne.

By her mother, Lucy descended from the brother of “Warwick, the Kingmaker” (Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick), John Neville, 1st Marquess of Montagu. The Marquess was also brother to Lady Alice FitHugh (born Neville); great-grandmother of Queen Katherine Parr. Warwick and Montagu were casualties of the War of the Roses. Montagu’s surviving children included Lucy’s grandmother, also named Lucy. Lucy married Sir Anthony Browne and they were parents to Lady Elizabeth Somerset, who became Countess of Worcester upon her marriage to Sir Henry Somerset. Lady Worcester’s sister, Anne, married to Charles Brandon, later Duke of Suffolk, in 1508. As such, the Countess was aunt to Ladies Anne and Mary Brandon. Lady Worcester became a lady-in-waiting to Queen Anne Boleyn, the second wife of King Henry VIII. However, Lady Worcester was an informant against the Queen when she was tried in 1536. Queen Anne was tragically sentenced to death and was executed shortly after.

Lucy Somerset may have served as a Maid of Honour to Queen consort Catherine Howard. Queen Catherine was the other ill fated wife of King Henry VIII. After Catherine was found to have had liaisons with other men before and possibly during her marriage to the King, she was also beheaded like her cousin, Queen Anne. Interesting fact: The holder of Catherine’s jewels after her execution would become the next sister-in-law to King Henry–Lady Herbert, lady-in-waiting to Queen Catherine Howard.

Lady Lucy married in 1545 to John Neville, 4th Baron Latimer, the stepson of King Henry’s sixth consort, Katherine Parr. As a teenager, John had proved to be a confident sulking, lying, and over-sensitive boy. His father, the 3rd Baron, did not name him as heir to his properties and made sure that his son could not meddle with his inheritance or the Baron’s legacy. In the 3rd Latimer’s will, Katherine Parr was named guardian of his daughter and was put in charge of his affairs which were to be given over to his daughter at the age of her majority. Despite the turbulance of the 4th Baron’s youth, Katherine Parr kept her stepchildren close, especially the Baron’s sister, Margaret. As Queen, Katherine made the new Lady Latimer a lady-in-waiting. Parr and the new Lady Latimer also happened to be cousins as their great-grandparents were siblings.[1]

Unfortunately, the 4th Baron became an emotionally unstable man later in life. The imbalance must have made it difficult for Lady Latimer. In the summer of 1553, John was sent to Fleet Prison on charges of violence done to a servant. He was arrested for attempted rape and assault in 1557 and in 1563, he killed a man. Of the situation in 1553, Thomas Edwards wrote to the Earl of Rutland describing the violence which had taken place with the servant quoting “too great a villainy for a noble man, my thought.”[1]

The couple had four daughters who all married quite well.

  • Hon. Elizabeth Neville (c. 1545 – 1630), married firstly Sir John Danvers of Dauntsey, and secondly Sir Edmund Carey, a cousin to Queen Elizabeth I. Her children include Sir Charles Danvers, who was executed for his part in the Essex Rebellion in 1601.  Elizabeth’s descendants by John Danvers included the Dukes of Leeds [extinct in 1964]; the Earls of Lichfield; and the Earls of Leicester of Holkham from which Sarah, Duchess of York (mother of Princess Beatrice and Eugenie of York) descends.
Elizabeth Neville Danvers
Monument to Lady Elizabeth Carey (1545/50–1630), also known as Elizabeth Danvers, née Neville) in St Michael’s parish church, Church Stowe, Northamptonshire, England. The stonework is by Nicholas Stone, master mason to James I (and then Charles I). It was put up during the subject’s lifetime (1620). It is said to be ‘one of the finest pieces of sculpture of the age’. (Wikipedia)
  • Hon. Katherine Neville (1546 – 28 October 1596), married firstly Henry Percy, 8th Earl of Northumberland, and secondly Francis Fitton of Binfield. Lord and Lady Northumberland were parents to Sir Henry, 9th Earl of Northumberland. Her descendants include Lady Diana Spencer, Princess of Wales; HM Queen Elizabeth II by her mother; Sarah, Duchess of York; and others. Katherine was buried in the Chapel of St. Nicholas in Westminster Abbey, within the Percy family, Dukes of Northumberland.
  • Hon. Dorothy Neville (1547 – 23 March 1609), married Sir Thomas Cecil, Queen Elizabeth’s counselor, later Earl of Exeter. Cecil was the half-brother of the Earl of Salisbury. Her descendants also include Lady Diana Spencer, the late Princess of Wales (mother of the future King William and the Duke of Sussex).
Dorothy Neville, Countess of Exeter
The Hon. Dorothy Neville who became Countess of Exeter when her husband Thomas Cecil was elevated to Earl in 1605
  • Hon. Lucy Neville (c. 1549 – April 1608), married Sir William Cornwallis of Brome Hall. Their daughters made advantageous marriages to nobility such as the marriage of their daughter Anne to the 7th Earl of Argyll by whom she had issue. Another daughter, Elizabeth, became Viscountess Lumley as the wife of Sir Richard, 1st Viscount Lumley.

Lord Latimer died in 1577. He was buried in St. Michael’s Church, Well, North Yorkshire which adjoined Neville’s home, Snape Castle. The church had a long standing history with the Neville family going back to John, Lucy, and Queen Katherine Parr’s ancestor, Sir Ralph Neville, the 1st Earl of Westmorland. Westmorland married Lady Joan Beaufort; the only daughter of Prince John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster by his mistress, later wife, Katherine Roet Swynford. Ralph Neville was responsible for the building of the present church c. 1330. The 4th Lord Latimer’s mural monument lies in Nevilles’ Chapel within Well’s Church. Latimer’s daughter, Dorothy, Countess of Exeter inherited Snape Castle and is also buried there with her husband Thomas Cecil, 1st Earl of Exeter.[4] According to a card placed upon the tomb of the 4th Baron, the four coat of arms on his tomb represent that of his four daughters and their husband.

The Latimers died without sons and their four daughters became joint heiresses. The barony became abeyant until 1913, when its abeyance was terminated in favour of the 4th Baron Latimer’s descendant Francis Money-Coutts, who became the 5th Baron Latymer.

Tomb of Lucy, Lady Latimer
Document on the magnificent tomb of Lady Lucy Somerset, Lady Latimer; wife of the 4th Lord Latimer and lady to HM Queen Katherine Parr.

Lady Latimer died on 23 February 1583. She was buried away from her husband in Hackney Parish Church in London. Her grand tomb has her effigy surrounded by her four daughter’s coats of arms.[2] Her tomb is one of only a few in England which feature such noble bearings; the other being the tomb of George Clifford, Earl of Cumberland at Skipton which is surrounded by no fewer than seventeen richly adorned shields which include that of Brandon, Dacre, de Clare, St. John, and more.[3] The Earl himself was a descendant of Queen Katherine Parr’s great-aunt, Mabel Parr, Lady Dacre. Lady Latimer’s tomb not only includes the arms many of those on Clifford’s tomb as Neville, Beauchamp, Dacre, Berkeley, and Percy but also those of de Vere Earl of Oxford, Walcot, and Cecil.[2] Lord Latimer’s arms (the Neville) are at one end of the tomb. The statues of the four daughters were two on each side of the monument; at the side of each the shield of the husband impaling the Neville arms. These arms are thus repeated five times. At the other end are Lady Latimer’s arms: the lions and fleur de lis that is France and England, quarterly, the arms of Beaufort, as she descended from the eldest legitimated son of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster; John Beaufort, 1st Earl of Somerset as well as his sister, Lady Joan, Countess of Westmorland.[2]

lucy somerset neville
Tomb of Lucy, Lady Latimer in St. John Church, Hackney, London, UK. Photo Credit: Here.

In Robinson’s History of Hackney we find:

“The effigy of Lady Latimer was exquisitely sculptured and was fixed on the top of the table monument She appears to be dressed in a scarlet robe with a coronet on her head and the other part of the dress was richly gilt This effigy was probably intended for a portrait of her.”

Her epitaph reads:

Such as she, is such surely shall yee bee; Such as shee was, such if yee bee, be glad: Faire in her youth though fatt in age she grew; Virtuous in bothe whose glosse did never fade. Though long alone she ledd a widowe’s life, Yet never ladye live da truer wife. From Wales she sprang, a Branch of Worcester’s race, Grafte in a stock of Brownes her mother’s side: In Court she helde a maide of honor’s place, Whilst youth in her, and she in Court did byde. To John, Lord Latimer, then became she wife; Four daughters had they breathing yet in life. Earl of Northumberland tooke the first to wife; The nexte the heire of Baron Burleigh chose: Cornwallis happ the third for terme of life: And Sir John Danvers pluckt the youngest Rose. Their father’s heirs, them mothers all she sawe: Pray for, or praise her: make your list the Lawe, Made by Sir William Cornwallis, Knight, this Ladye’s Sonne in Lawe.[2]

Links

Sources

  1. Susan E. James. Catherine Parr, Henry VIII’s Last Love. The History Press, 2009.
  2. Richard Simpson. Some Accounts of the Monuments in Hackney Church, Billing and Sons, 1881; Chapter: Lady Latimer.
  3. W. Harbutt Dawson. History of Skipton, Simpkin, Marshall, London, 1882.
  4. History: Village of Well, North Yorkshire. http://www.wellvillage.org.uk/history/

 

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Ladies-in-Waiting: Anne Russell, Countess of Bedford

Anne Sapcote, Countess of Bedford
Anne Russell (née Sapcote), Countess of Bedford by George Perfect Harding pencil, 1802-1853 6 5/8 in. x 5 3/8 in. (168 mm x 137 mm) Purchased, 1929 Reference Collection NPG D5636 Anne Russell (née Sapcote), Countess of Bedford (died 1559), Former wife of John Broughton and of Sir Richard Jerningham, and later wife of 1st Earl of Bedford; daughter of Sir Guy Sapcote. [National Portrait Gallery, London]
Anne Russell (née Sapcote), Countess of Bedford (died 1559) was the daughter and heiress of Sir Guy Sapcote and Margaret Wolston.[1] By her son by the Earl of Bedford, Anne is the ancestress of the current Dukes of Bedford. The current heir to the Dukedom is Henry Robin Charles Russell, Marquess of Tavistock (b. 2005). Anne is also an ancestor to other Dukedoms which include the Dukes of Beaufort and Manchester.

Anne’s first husband was John Broughton. The couple had three children, Katherine, John, and Anne. Anne’s daughter, Katherine later married to William Howard1st Baron Howard of Effingham, son of Thomas Howard2nd Duke of Norfolk and Agnes Tilney.[1] Another daughter, named Anne became the wife of Sir Thomas Cheney of the Isle of Sheppey.[BHO] Sadly, the elder John died in June 1519.

Anne married secondly to Sir Richard Jerningham. The two had no issue.[1] Jerningham was a diplomat and gentleman of the privy chamber for Henry VIII. However, Anne was widowed again by 1525.

As a twice widowed woman at court, Anne was involved in court politics, was intelligent, was mature, and was wealthy. One would say she sounded much like Katherine Parr did after her second husband, Lord Latimer, died in 1543. All of these characteristics made Anne a perfect match even if she had three children from her first marriage.[2]

John Russell
A portrait of John Russell, 1st Earl of Bedford, after Hans Holbein the Younger

garter plate john russell 1st earl of bedford 1539
Garter stall-plate of John Russell, 1st Earl of Bedford (c. 1485 – 14 March 1554/1555), KG, nominated to the Order in 1539. The arms are blazoned: quarterly of four: 1st grand quarter: quarterly 1st & 4th: Argent, a lion rampant gules on a chief sable three escallops of the first (Russell); 2nd & 3rd: Azure, a tower argent (de la Tour); 2nd grand quarter: Gules, three herrings hauriant argent (Herringham); 3rd: Sable, a griffin segreant between three crosses crosslet fitchy argent (Froxmere); 4th: Sable, three chevronnels ermine in dexter chief a crescent or for difference. Crest: A goat statant argentarmed and unguled or; Supporters: Dexter: A goat argent, Sinister: A lion rampant gules (Debrett’s Peerage, 1968, p.131), with supporters on exchanged sides) Motto: Plus que Jamais (“More than Never”). Inscription: “Of the very noble and powerful Lord John, Earl of Bedford, Baron Russell, Knight of the Very Noble Order of the Garter and Keeper of the Privy Seal, was installed at Windsor the 18th day of May the year of King Henry VIII of his reign the 31st, the year 1539”). [Wikipedia]
John Russell1st Earl of Bedford (1485-14 March 1555) was the son of James Russell and Alice Wyse. He married Anne in 1526.[1] At the time of their marriage, Russell was a newly made man of the privy chamber to Henry VIII. Russell would go on to serve as Lord High Admiral and Lord Privy Seal.

Russell’s career spanned over the reigns of King Henry VII to Queen Mary I. In 1506, he was in service to the future Queen Mary’s grandparents, Queen Isabel I of Castile and King Ferdinand II of Aragon, when they were shipwrecked at Weymouth. He escorted the couple to London and was praised by the royal couple to King Henry upon his manners. He became a gentleman of the privy chamber to Henry VII in 1507.

In the reign of Henry VIII, Russell was used for diplomatic purposes and was knighted in 1522 after he lost an eye fighting in Brittany.

In 1528, Anne lost her only son by her first marriage, John. She was overcome with grief. As noted by Sir Thomas Heneage,[2]

“My lady Russell takes the death of her son so sore that Russell fears, if she should not obtain your favour [Cardinal Thomas Wolsey] for the wardship of the younger sister, it will be her utter undoing.”[2]

Sadly, the power struggle between Anne Boleyn and Wolsey would keep Lady Russell from obtaining the wardship of her daughter, which she so desperately hoped for.[2]

Anne helped her husband on many occasions. She is known to have appealed to Lord Cromwell about debts that had not been repaid to her husband. She sent gifts to the King and when John was sick, she sent a letter to Cromwell to send a doctor. In an effort to secure the wardship of Anne’s daughter, John also wrote in 1528, but failed to obtain it. He did however secure the wardship of other family members. He also secured the property rights as the Sapcote’s heiress.[2]

However, in 1535, Anne lost yet another child. This time it was Katherine who had become Baroness as the wife to Baron Effingham.

Sir John Russell survived the fall of Anne Boleyn and was made a Privy Counsellor in 1536. In 1539, he became a Knight of the Garter. He was also granted some of the estates of the attained Duke of Buckingham who had been executed for treason. He became Comptroller of the Household from 1537-1539.

Russell continued to rise among his peers and was granted the title Earl of Bedford on 19 January 1550 by the boy King, Edward VI.

Francis Russell 2nd Earl of Bedford
Portrait of Lord Francis Russell. Black and coloured chalks, pen and Indian ink on pink-primed paper, 24.2 × 18.1 cm, Royal Collection, Windsor Castle. The drawing is heavily rubbed and disfigured, and the penwork is not original. Francis Russell (1527–1585) was the son of John Russell, Ist Earl of Bedford, whose portrait Holbein also drew. He succeeded to the earldom in 1555. Reference K. T. Parker, The Drawings of Hans Holbein at Windsor Castle, Oxford: Phaidon, 1945, OCLC 822974, p. 55.

The couple had one son and heir, Francis (1527-28 July 1585). Francis eventually became the 2nd Earl of Bedford upon the death of his father. Like his father, Francis was very active at court. He rose to prominence under Queen Elizabeth I. He was made privy councillor and was an Ambassador. His tasks included that of representing Her Majesty at the christening of Prince James Stuart (the son of Mary, Queen of Scots and Lord Darnley). He was a guest of honor at the subsequent banquet and masque held in the Prince’s honor. Francis married to Margaret St. John, the great-great-granddaughter of Margaret Beauchamp of Bletso. The couple had four sons and three daughters. He married secondly to Bridget Hussey, daughter of John Hussey, 1st Lord and Lady Anne Grey, daughter of the 2nd Earl of Kent and Lady Katherine Herbert. Francis had no issue by his second wife. His issue by his first wife included Lady Elizabeth who married the Earl of Bath and had issue, Lady Anne who married the Earl of Warwick, Lady Margaret who married the Earl of Cumberland and had issue, and Lord William Russell who became the father to the 4th Earl of Bedford. Lord William Russell was the grandfather of William Russell, 1st Duke of Bedford.[1]

Anne died in 1559. Her and her husband were buried in the Bedford Chapel in Chenies, Buckinghamshire. A description of the monument erected is below.

In the chancel is the oldest completed monument in the Chapel, early 16th c. most probably of Italian workmanship. Executed in red-veined alabaster, probably from Derbyshire, entirely uncoloured. The sides of the tomb chest are panelled, ornamented with pilasters, arabesques in relief and inlaid with Venetian Renaissance motifs of lozenges and roundels of clouded black marble and polished flint. Carved shields with achievement of arms are in each panel and at ends – eight in number. Recumbent effigies of the Earl and Countess, hands joined and raised in the attitude of prayer – the Earl’s figure clad in plate armour with the collar and mantle of the Garter, coronet and cross hilted sword. The head is on a helmet with goat couchant crest, mantling arranged to cover the hollow end and the feet on a lion. The face is modelled from a portrait of the Earl, by Holbein, in Woburn Abbey and indicates the droop of the eyelid over the eye which was damaged by an arrow at the siege of Morlaix in 1523. [Heraldry of the Bedford Chapel Chenies]

Links

Sources

  1. G.E. Cokayne; with Vicary Gibbs, H.A. Doubleday, Geoffrey H. White, Duncan Warrand and Lord Howard de Walden, editors, The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, Extant, Extinct or Dormant, new ed., 13 volumes in 14 (1910-1959; reprint in 6 volumes, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 2000), volume II, page 9, 73-76.
  2. Carole Levin, Anna Riehl Bertolet, Jo Eldridge Carney. A Biographical Encyclopedia of Early Modern EnglishwomenExemplary Lives and Memorable Acts, 1500-1650. Taylor & Francis, Nov 3, 2016. Google eBook

Ladies-in-Waiting: Elizabeth Stonor

Elizabeth Stonor, Lady Hoby
Portrait of Lady Hoby, inscribed “The Lady Hobbei”. Black and coloured chalks, pen and Indian ink on pink-primed paper, 27.8 × 20.3 cm, Royal Collection, Windsor Castle. The drawing has been so rubbed and reinforced by later hands that it is disfigured, obliterating Holbein’s original work. If the inscription—added later and not necessarily reliable—is correct, the sitter is most likely Elizabeth Hoby, wife of the diplomat Sir Philip Hoby (1505–1558), whose portrait Holbein also drew. Reference K. T. Parker, The Drawings of Hans Holbein at Windsor Castle, Oxford: Phaidon, 1945, OCLC 822974, p. 50.

Elizabeth Stonor, Lady Hoby, daughter of Walter Stonor of Hawton, Nottinghamshire and Fenny Compton.

While most wives in the Tudor period cannot be documented, Elizabeth seems to have kept up correspondences with her father and they are well documented for two decades. Elizabeth’s first husband, Sir William Compton died in 1528. Unfortunately for her, the jointure she was promised had not been established by the time of his death. Her second husband, Sir Walter Walshe, sued Compton’s estate in Chancery. The matter was not settled and Walshe was dead by 1538. As a widow, Elizabeth returned home and her father took up the cause instead. Letters were sent to Cromwell to discuss the matter. Stonor sent the fee for the first year, reminding him to be her “good lord” and protect her from “great wrongs”.[1]

In 1540, Elizabeth married to Sir Philip Hoby,  the son of William Hoby of Leominster by his first wife, Catherine Forster. After their marriage, the two rented their chief residence, Wreysbury, from Elizabeth’s father.[1] Philip was a diplomat under King Henry VIII. He was also a huge supporter of the Protestant Reformation. Hoby was sent to places like Spain and Portugal. In 1538, he was tasked with getting a portrait done of Christina, Duchess of Milan by Holbein. Hoby and Holbein then went to France to paint Princess Margaret of France and Mary de Bourbon. Throughout the reign of Henry VIII, Hoby continued to advance and was eventually knighted after the siege of Boulogne. The couple had no children.

In respect to letters, after she married Hoby, Elizabeth was reluctant to spend time with her father despite his support during her first two marriages. One topic that comes up is one of religion. Sir Walter told his daughter’s servant, Richard Scudamore,[1]

“that he [Stonor] knew very well how to order himself and that my lady was much given to the Scriptures and that she always was arguing and contending with him in the same, and which thing he could in no wise bear and specially at her hands.”[1]

Another difficulty between Elizabeth and her father rose with his apparent new love, a “mistress Margaret”, who Elizabeth feared he would marry. Eventually, after much discussion between Scudumore and Stonor, Stonor replied with,[1]

“if it please my lady to come unto him to make merry and not meddle with him or any of his household she would be as welcome as ever she was.”[1]

The reply evidentely satisfied Elizabeth as she decided to spend Christmas at Stonor after all.[1]

When Tudor women married again, they used their subsequent husbands to safeguard their children’s inheritance. In some cases this worked and in others it did not. Luckily for Elizabeth, Sir Philip Hoby seems to have delivered in this area. Elizabeth asked Hoby to safeguard her inheritance for her daughters she had, had by her second husband, Walsh. Hoby delivered and made funds available for Elizabeth when she needed them.[1]

The couple were attendants upon Henry VIII’s sixth queen. Lady Hoby was a lady to Her Majesty and was part of her inner circle of ladies who read scriptures and continued to push the reformation of the Church. Lord Hoby was a part of the queen’s council from 1543, onward. He also was a steward, later on, to Baron Seymour of Sudeley.

By chance, the couple swapped the Abbey of Bisham with the former queen, Anne of Cleves. There was some delay as Anne was not satisfied with giving up the site as requested by Edward VI. In the church of All Saints is a window dedicated to the Hobys. The lights also feature the arms of several of the Hobys, including Sir Philip and Elizabeth. The Abbey at one time belonged to the Earls of Salisbury. It belonged to the last Plantagenet and York Princess, Margaret of Clarence–or–better known as “Lady Salisbury”. The Countess of Salisbury lost her head and her possessions when her cousin, Henry VIII decided to kill her. Lady Salisbury was a cousin to Queen Katherine Parr’s paternal grandmother, Lady Elizabeth Parr/Vaux.

Lady Hoby was lucky enough to be sketched by Hans Holbein. However, due to later rubbing and re-enforcing, the portrait is not in good quality. The description of the sitter was most likely added later and may not be reliable as most Tudor portraits were labeled after the period they were created. If the inscription is correct, the sitter is most likely Elizabeth Stonor.

Sources

  1. Barbara J. Harris. English Aristocratic Women, 1450-1550: Marriage and Family, Property and Careers, 2002. Google eBook

Ladies-in-Waiting: Anne, Lady Walsingham

Anne Jerningham (d.1559), daughter of Sir Edward Jerningham (died 6 January 1515) of Somerleyton, Suffolk, by Margaret Bedingfield (died 24 March 1504), daughter of Sir Edmund (1443-1496) and Alice Shelton (d. about 1478). Sir Edmund fought under the 13th Earl of Oxford at the Battle of Stoke on 15 July 1487. In that year he also entertained King Henry VII at Oxburgh. Edmund was married twice. Anne was one of the eight children born to Sir Edward Jerningham and Margaret. After the death of her mother, Anne’s father married to Mary Scrope by which she had five more siblings.[3]

In March 1516, Henry Brandon was born to the Duke and Duchess of Suffolk. He was christened with the pomp befitting of a nephew of King Henry VIII. As Lady Grey, Anne was responsible for carrying the infant into the hall. Anne was accompanied by Sir Humphrey Banaster, who bore the train, Lord Thomas Dacre, Chamberlain of the Duchess, her husband Lord Edward Grey, and a group of about 40 ladies. Anne’s prominence at the christening is attributed to her closeness to the Duchess, the Dowager French Queen. Anne accompanied the Princess to meet her bridegroom, Louis XII of France. Anne attended the wedding and was one of the English ladies who was allowed to stay on at court in France. When Louis died, Anne was kept on as a lady when the Queen married the Duke of Suffolk. Anne appeared at the Field of the Cloth of Gold.[1]

Anne is noted in the Letters and Papers of the Reign of Henry VIII as being paid 100s for her half year’s wages.[3]

In 1517, Lord Edward Grey died leaving Anne a widow. Edward had been the eldest son and heir of the 1st Marquess of Dorset and a grandson of King Edward IV’s queen, Elizabeth Woodville. Upon Edward’s death, Anne’s stepmother tried to quickly set her up with John, Lord Berkeley, a ward of the Duke of Suffolk. Outraged by this setup, the Duke wrote Thomas Wolsey on 17 March 1517, saying: “I had liever have spent a thousand pounds than any such pageants should have been done within the queen’s household and mine.”[1] However, this marriage may have taken place or she was later married to a man of the Berkeley family as in her will she names sons with the surname Berkeley.[2]

Anne’s second husband was Henry Barley of Albury (1487-12 November 1529). Barley was the son of William and Elizabeth Darcy, daughter of Sir Robert Darcy. Barley had been previously married to Elizabeth, daughter of John Northwood. Barley’s father, William, was attained for treason for supporting Perkin Warbeck in 1495, but was pardoned three years later. The Barleys’ are noted for a Star Chamber case in which a rector accused them of malicious persecution and destruction of church property. The Barleys’ sued for slander. In the end, the Barleys’ admitted to some of the behaviors, but they alleged that the rector had used Albury to pass through and have an illicit affair with the wife of a parishioner. It turns out the husband may have made payments to hush up the affair. Whatever the story was, the truth was never uncovered. The whole case showed the Barleys’ anti-clericalism.  The Barleys’ owned a considerable amount of land in Essex. Barley was considered to be one of the wealthiest men in Hertfordshire. Barley was at Parliament in 1529, which probably pleased the King. Sadly, eight days later Barley was dead.[4]

When Barley died in 1529, Anne married Sir Robert Drury two years later. Drury was linked to the Duke of Suffolk. When he died in 1535, Drury willed Anne and his sons various household items, plate, and livestock.[1] Drury had been Speaker of the House of Commons.

At the time of her marriage to Sir Edmund Walsingham, Anne was the widow of three husbands. When Walsingham died in 1550, Anne was willed 40 pounds, jewelry, plate, and property.[1]

Anne died in 1559. She was buried beside her first husband, Lord Edward Grey at St. Clement Danes in London.[1]

Sources

  1. Carole LevinAnna Riehl BertoletJo Eldridge Carney. A Biographical Encyclopedia of Early Modern EnglishwomenExemplary Lives and Memorable Acts, 1500-1650. 2016. Google eBook
  2. Oxford-Shakespeare.com Will of Lady Anne Grey
  3. Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic of the Reign of Henry VIIIPreserved in the Public Record Office, the British Museum and Elsewhere in England, Volume 2, Part 2. Google eBook
  4. History of Parliament: 1509-1558.

 

Ladies-in-Waiting: Jane, Countess of Southampton

 

Jane Cheney Southampton
Effigy of Jane, Countess of Southampton at Titchfield, Hampshire, England where she is buried with her husband.[Tudor Effigies]
Jane Cheney, Countess of Southampton (d.15 September 1574) was the daughter and heiress of William Cheney of Chesham Bois, Buckinghamshire, by Emma Walwyn, daughter of Thomas Walwyn.[1]

There is some obscurity about the identity of Southampton’s wife. He was married before 1533 to Jane, niece of Stephen Gardiner [q. v.], bishop of Winchester, and sister of the unfortunate Germain Gardiner, the bishop’s private secretary, who was executed for denying the royal supremacy in 1543 (Letters and Papers, xii. i. 1209, ii. 47, 546, 634, 825). In all the pedigrees, however, his wife is styled ‘Jane daughter of William Cheney or Cheyne of Chesham Bois, Buckinghamshire,’ and there is no trace of his having had two wives. The inference is that the Countess of Southampton’s mother married first a brother of Bishop Gardiner, and secondly William Cheney, being mother of Germain Gardiner by her first husband, and of the Countess of Southampton by her second.[DNB]

Jane married to Thomas Wriothesley (21 December 1505-30 July 1550), the son of York Herald, William Wriothesley and Agnes Drayton, daughter and heiress of James Drayton of London.[1] Thomas Wriothesley was held in high favor with King Henry VIII. However, he would become one of the members of the Catholic faction that tried to arrest Queen Katherine Parr. As Jane was a member of Parr’s household, one wonders what she would have thought when her own husband was reprimanded for trying to serve an arrest warrant to the Queen while she was sitting in the garden enjoying an afternoon with the King. Wriothesley was not met with a warm reception and was yelled at by the King for such behavior after the two had been reconciled on the matter at hand.

Coat of Arms Thomas Wriothesley 1st earl of Southampton
Quartered arms of Sir Thomas Wriothesley, 1st Earl of Southampton, KG. [Wikipedia]
The couple had several children; three sons and five daughters.[1] Sadly, the first two sons died and only the third survived; Henry. Henry was christened on 24 April 1545 at St. Andrews in Holborn. One of his godfather’s was the King, who was represented by Sir William Parr, 1st Earl of Essex (brother of the current Queen, Katherine Parr).  His other godfather was the Duke of Suffolk and his godmother was the Lady Mary. Jane brought up her children in the Catholic faith and that may have hindered them.[3]

The eight thousand acre, Beaulieu Abbey, was acquired by the Wriothesley family in 1538. Another monastic estate granted to the family was Titchfield in Hampshire where the principal family home was located.

Jane was fashionable and had the luxury of jewels due to her husband’s status. In her will is described a fine jewel, ‘a brooch of gold set with an agate and four little rubies [and] there is a picture of a face upon the agate.’ Cameos were popular, especially for queen’s like Katherine Parr who can be seen wearing a girdle of them in her large portrait in the National Portrait Gallery.[2]

Jane outlived her husband who died on 30 July 1550. Her son, who was still a minor at the time of his father’s death, became the ward of William Herbert, 1st Earl of Pembroke, husband of Lady Anne Herbert (sister of the late Queen Katherine Parr). As a widow, Jane inherited manors in Hampshire like Titchfield and Southampton House in Holborn.

In her will of 1574, Jane left to her daughter Katherine one book, ‘my best book of gold set with four diamonds on one side, and a ruby in the middle, weighing about nine ounces and a half, and the Queen’s Majesty handwriting in the same book.’ A second book, ‘a book of gold enamelled with a black knot with two scallop shells, weighing about four ounces and a half’ went to her daughter Mabel. These books could be attached to a girdle like jewelry. Jane had used them to collect signatures, inscriptions and short versus from friends. The books were religious in nature. And to her son, Henry, Jane left ‘a square tablett of golde wherein is the picture of my lorde his father’s face in in, weighinge about two ounces and a half.'[2]

Titchfield Abbey
After the Dissolution, Titchfield Abbey was converted into a mansion, known as Place House, seen here as it looked in 1733. [Wikipedia]
Jane died on 15 September 1574 and she was buried in Titchfield, Hampshire where her effigy can be seen.

Links

Sources

  1. Cokayne, G. E. (1953). The Complete Peerage edited by Geoffrey H. White. XII (Part I)
  2. Susan James. The Feminine Dynamic in English Art, 1485-1603 Women as Consumers, Patrons and Painters. Google eBook.
  3. Akrigg, G.P.V. (1968). Shakespeare and the Earl of Southampton. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press.

Ladies-in-Waiting: Dorothy Bray, Lady Chandos

Dorothy Bray, Lady Chandos of Sudeley (c.1524-31 October 1605) was the daughter of Edmund, 1st Baron Bray (1484-18 October 1539) and Jane Hallighwell (c.1480-24 October 1558). She was at court as a maid of honor to Anne of Cleves, Catherine Howard and Katherine Parr.

She embarked upon a brief tryst with Sir William Parr, brother of the future queen c.1541, which was over by 1543. Parr’s wife, Anne Bourchier, heiress to the Earl of Essex, had already left their marriage and embarked with her lover and had children by him, so Parr was left behind. Parr’s interest was then diverted to Dorothy’s niece, Elisabeth Brooke.

Dorothy married Edmund Brydges, 2nd Baron Chandos (d.11 September 1573) and their children were Eleanor (b.c.1546), Giles (1547-1594), Mary, Katherine (1554-1596), and William (d. 1602). Dorothy was at court as Lady Brydges during Mary Tudor’s reign.

In 1574, Queen Elizabeth visited Lady Chandos at Sudeley Castle. In 1588, she was living in Essex House in London and had 220 books in her bedchamber there.

Dorothy’s second husband was a younger man, Sir William Knollys (1545-1632).

Dorothy was known among courtiers as “old lady Chandos”. Unfortunately, her husband fell in love with one of the queen’s maids of honor, Mary Fitton. During that time, Dorothy was living with him in a house adjoining the royal tilt yard (Violet Wilson. Queen Elizabeth’s Maids of Honor and Ladies of the Privy Chamber).

Dorothy’s daughters, Eleanor and Katherine, and eventually her granddaughters, Frances and Elizabeth Brydges, would also become maids of honor.

Portraits: The “Duchess of Chandos” attributed to John Bettes the Younger, 1578, could be Dorothy Bray, although the sitter looks very young for someone who would be around fifty-four years old at the time. Dorothy’s effigy appears with her second husband in the church at Rotherfield Greys, Oxfordshire.

Sources