Family of Queen Katherine Parr: Sir John Throckmorton of Coughton
John was born at Coughton Court circa 1524. He was one of the eight sons and of the seventeen children of Sir George Throckmorton of Coughton Court and his wife Kathryn Vaux, daughter of Sir Nicholas, Baron Vaux of Harrowden and his first wife, the widowed Lady Elizabeth Parr [born FitzHugh]. By his mother, he was cousin to Queen Katherine Parr, the sixth queen and wife of King Henry VIII.
Throckmorton isn’t as well known as his elder brothers like Sir Nicholas and Sir Robert. John most likely started his career at court inside the household of Queen Katherine. In the years to come, he definitely had his cousin, Queen Katherine, to thank for his advancement at court. However, when she died in 1548, the advancement wasn’t favored as much and John had to rely on others like the Duke of Northumberland who took over after Edward VI sent his uncle [and Lord Protector] to the scaffold. Among the leading men, Throckmorton had several friends and family links; Queen Katherine’s brother, William, who was now Marquess of Northampton, and the Earl of Pembroke who had married the queen’s sister, Anne.
When the little curbuffle with Lady Jane Grey came to pass — loyalties changed. After Sir William Cecil refused to write up the proclamation of Lady Jane becoming queen, the task was given to Throckmorton. Like Cecil, he refused to have anything to do with it. Throckmorton would go on to back the Lady Mary [eldest daughter of King Henry VIII by his first wife, Katherine of Aragon] at Framlingham. Those who remained with Lady Jane [including one of his brothers and the Marquess of Northampton], were met with harsh penalties and punishment for their treason against Mary. His cousin, John [II], was eventually executed under Mary’s command for his role in the Dudley conspriracy.
During the five Marian parliaments, Throckmorton would be present for four. His first appearance, with his brother Nicholas, was most likely due to their cousin-in-law, William Herbert, Earl of Pembroke [husband to the late Anne Parr, sister of Queen Catherine and the Marquess of Northampton]. As a Catholic, Throckmorton suffered somewhat under the reign of Mary’s sister, Elizabeth. Four years after his death, his heir would be executed for his role in a revolt against the Protestant queen Elizabeth.
Throckmorton married to Margaret Puttenham, daughter of Robert of Sherfield-upon-Loddon. They had at least four sons and two daughters. His son, Francis, would be involved in the great Throckmorton Plot of 1584 which would have replaced Queen Elizabeth with Mary, Queen of Scots [a senior legitimate descendant of the Tudor family by King Henry VIII’s elder sister, Princess Margaret]. Francis is featured in the film Elizabeth: The Golden Age.
By both parents, John was cousin to Queen Katherine Parr. However, his mother was the queen’s paternal aunt as her father and Katherine shared the same mother. Parr’s father was the result of his mother’s first marriage to Sir William Parr, Lord of Kendal, while Katherine was the result of their mother’s second marriage to the Lancastrian Sir Nicholas Vaux [later Baron Vaux of Harrowden]. By Katherine Parr’s mother, Maud Green, Katherine was a second cousin, once removed of Sir George Throckmorton as they shared Sir John Throckmorton (born circa 1380) and Eleanor de la Spiney (born circa 1385) as common ancestors.
Meg McGath is the author behind the articles on tudorqueen6; she has been studying the history and genealogy of the Parr family since 2007. Now, a decade later, she is still writing about her favorite Tudor queen, Kateryn Parr.
Meg studied Women's Studies with an emphasis on English Women's History at the University of Maryland.
One of her goals is to end the myth that Kateryn Parr was nothing more than a nursemaid to the aging King Henry VIII. "It simply isn't true, she did so much more for the Royal Family and her country," says Meg. And, of course, to educate Tudor enthusiasts on the prestigious lineage and connections of the Parr family. "Kateryn was related to everyone at court by blood or marriage. She was a descendant of the Beaufort line of John of Gaunt, son of Edward III, and Katherine Swynford. She shared this line with two of her husbands, Lord Latimer and the King," Meg states.
A book is always her end game with Parr, but Meg has yet to put all the information together and send it to a publisher. "I've been told by many, including Professors, that I am a good writer..." says Meg. "The book, would focus on the generations before the Queen and how the Parr family became courtiers and relatives of The Crown."
Meg has also done extensive research on the massive jewels and tiara collection of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. Her Majesty's collection was built starting with Queen consort Charlotte of Mecklenberg, wife of King George III, and grandmother of Queen Victoria. Meg is now putting together a separate blog that coincides with her Tudor Wiki contributions which started in 2007.
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