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.

 

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