Monday, 25 August 2014

Alleged daughter of Mary and Philip

In 1587, a woman named Anne Burnell (nee Kirkall) was found to be claiming she was the daughter of King Philip of Spain, former King consort of England, and Queen Mary I, and believed herself to be a royal heir to the throne of England.

Eight years earlier when Anne was visiting her mother-in-law in Winkbourn in Nottinghamshire, she met a man known as the 'witch of Nuttall', otherwise called Thomas Watson. Although later on this story changes to that Watson came and stayed at their home in Westminster. This witch, or wise man, told Anne that she was "a spanish birde & that she had marks above her, which would appeare hereafter & that she did not knowe her owne father for it was a wise childe that did"..."then he toulde her that the best spaniard that euer came in England was her father & toulde her that she had markes aboute her yt should appeare greater hereafter". With the onset of England's war with Spain, Anne came to understand this reading to mean that King Philip of Spain was her father.

Anne's husband, Edward Burnell, was a wealthy Catholic from Nottingham, and was the step brother of the poet Barnaby Googe. In 1586 Edward had been imprisoned in the Kings Bench, as part of a round up of Catholics after the Babington Plot. Edward did not support his wife's claims of royal parentage. Edward stated that; "Since Witsontide her husbande upbradeinge her with the basenes of her parentage her father beinge one Kirkall a Butcher in Eastcheape in London who died xiiii yeares past & her mother long before".

The Privy Council charged James Dalton with examining Anne's claim; he was chosen as he already knew the woman, and so Anne stayed with James and his wife Mary while this went on. Anne claimed she had on her body, on her back, the marks of the Arms of England which had only appeared after her meeting with Watson. Later, Anne swore she had never said she was Queen Mary's child but continued to affirm she had the arms of England on her skin. The wife of James Dalton, Mary Dalton, also backed up this claim and stated that Anne had never claimed to be the child of Queen Mary I, only to be an illegitimate child of King Philip.
When the wise man, Thomas Watson, was found and questioned about his meeting with Anne, he admitted to meeting her yet denied the suggestion that he had told her she was of royal parentage.
It would appear that Dalton was a genuine friend to Anne and did his best to protect her; the investigation came to nothing. This result can be seen as unusual when the political climate at that time concerning the war with Spain is considered.

Edward Burnell died later on in 1587 and Anne was left a widow, she was then alone with her delusions of royalty. Dalton had hinted during the 1587 investigation that Anne's mental health was not stable, something which would only worsen after the death of her husband.

Five years later in 1592, Anne's delusion had continued and she was again investigated by the Privy Council.
Anne was examined and it was found that there was nothing on her back, as she had always claimed. The only person who seemed to still believe her was her thirteen year old maid, Alice Digges, who was simply reprimanded for her part and sent back home to her parents.
As punishment, she was whipped through the streets of London on the 19th December 1592. It may have only been the intervention of Dalton that prevented Anne from suffering this punishment in 1587.

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Katherine Howard's Welsh ancestry

Through her maternal Welsh ancestry, Katherine was in fact related to the Tudor monarchs, and therefore to her husband Henry VIII. Katherine's ancestors were members of the noble Welsh family which included the rebel Owain Glyndwr.


Katherine Howard (1525-42)
+ Joyce Culpeper (1482-1531)
   + Isabel Worsley (1450-1527)
      + Rose Trevor verch Edward (1422-1460)
         + Angharad Puleston (1392 Flintshire, Wales-1420) m. Edward Trevor ap Daffyd (1365                               Denbighshire, Wales -1448)
            + Lowri ferch Gruffudd Fychan (b.1360)  m. Robert Puleston (b.1358)
               + Elen ferch Thomas (b.1325) m. Gruffudd Fychan ap Gruffudd (b.1325)
                  + Thomas ap Llewelyn (1302-43) m. Eleanor Goch


Owain (ap Gruffyd Fychan) Glendower, Prince of Wales (1349-1416), was the older brother of Katherine's ancestor Lowri ferch Gruffudd Fychan, and it was this Owain who led the rebellion against King Henry IV in 1400.

Owain Glyndwr

Owain and Lowri were maternal first cousins to Maredydd ap Tudur (d.1406), who along with his older brothers Rhys the Sheriff of Anglesey, and Gwilym, supported Owain's rebellion. Maredudd's mother Margaret ferch Thomas, and Lowri and Owain's mother Elen ferch Thomas were sisters. Therefore Katherine Howard's ancestry and her husband King Henry VIII's ancestry meet at Elen and Margaret's father Thomas ap Llewelyn, Lord of South Wales (1302-43). Maredydd, or Meredith in its anglicized form, was the father of the Owen Tudor who married Katherine of Valois and became the great-grandfather of King Henry VIII.

Owen Tudor

Lowri's husband Robert Puleston was a supporter of his brother-in-law Owain in the rebellion. As well as this, Lowri and Robert's son Roger (d.1469) was an ally of Jasper Tudor and was his Deputy Constable in the years 1460-1.

Jasper Tudor

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Edward Sutton's two families

Edward Sutton, Baron Dudley (1567-1643) was a man who had two families; one with the wife he was arranged to marry, and a second with the woman who became his long term mistress until his death. It may not be unusual for a nobleman to also have a mistress, however Edward Sutton left his wife and legitimate children unsupported and set up home with his mistress and their eleven children. 

On June 18th 1581 Edward Sutton married Theodosia Harington (1560-1650). The Harington family were the largest landowners in Rutland. 
Edward and Theodosia had five children together;
+ Anne Sutton (1582-1615) m. Hans Meinhard von Schonberg
+ Theodosia Sutton (b.1584)
+ Mary Sutton (1586-1645) m. Alexander Home
+ Ferdinando Sutton (1588-1621) m. Honora Seymour
+ Margaret Sutton (b.1597) m. Miles Hobart

Edward owned lands in Staffordshire and Worcestershire, as well as the manors of Dudley, Sedgley and Kingswinford, along with ironworks in that area. It was probably due to his time spent in the area of Dudley that Edward met local girl Elizabeth Tomlinson. 
Edward Sutton met Elizabeth Tomlinson (1579-1629), the daughter of collier William Tomlinson and his wife Agnes Dues of St Thomas in Dudley, and she became his mistress. 
Edward and Elizabeth had twelve children together;
+ Robert Dudley (1587-1653) m. Margaret 
+ Elizabeth Dudley (1588-1647) m. Jeffrey Dudley
+ Jane Dudley (b.1588) m. Richard Parkhouse
+ Catherine Dudley (1589-1675) m. Thomas Dudley
+ Martha Dudley (b.1590) m. Thomas Wilmer
+ Alice Dudley (b.1592) m. George Guest
+ Susan Dudley (1594-1601)
+ John Dudley (1597-1604)
+ Dud Dudley (1600-1684) m. Eleanor Heaton (1606-75)
+ Dorothy Dudley (b.1606) m. Thomas Brooke
+ Eleanor Dudley (1606-1659)
+ Edward Dudley (1608-14)

Himley Hall

Edward moved to Himley Hall near Dudley with Elizabeth Tomlinson and their children, leaving his wife Theodosia and their children in London. Edward left his wife with no financial support; the Privy Council became involved and the Star Chamber ordered Edward to pay his wife an allowance as she was left "without provision of sustenance" whilst he lived with "a lewd and infamous woman". Yet Edward continued to leave his wife without any money. In August 1597 Edward was sent to Fleet Prison for this non-payment. He was only imprisoned for a few days and was released with the condition that he give his wife the £66 that was owed to her since the Privy Council ruling. In addition to this, he was to pay £100 a year to Theodosia during her lifetime unless the couple were to reunite, as well as £10 a year for each legitimate child for their education. Less than eighteen months later Edward was again called by the Privy Council as he had failed to maintain the payments; he failed to send his wife the money ordered, sending her only a payment of £32. 

Edward's only legitimate son Ferdinando predeceased him, however he left a daughter Frances Sutton who was Edward's heiress. Frances became Baroness Dudley and inherited the estates as well as the debts. Frances' husband Humble Ward, son of a wealthy goldsmith, paid off the debts and restored the estates. 
Concerning his surviving illegitimate sons; Robert Dudley was given the Netherton Estate in Dudley, and Dud Dudley was given the lease of Chasepool Lodge in Swindon.

Dud Dudley was the child of Edward Sutton that caused the family the most problems. He had been educated at Balloil College at Oxford University, however he was called home to help his father with the ironworks business. A relative John Bagley accused Dud of "wasting his father's fortune on his coal mining schemes" and "bringing his father to such destitution". His mother Elizabeth was clearly aware of his nature and in her Will she requested that the money belonging to her which was then in the hands of Dud be given instead to the poor people of Dudley. At the time of her death Elizabeth Tomlinson was a wealthy woman with a personal wealth made up of money, plate and jewels coming to around the sum of at least L600. It was this fortune which she had given to Dud five years before her death as she had apparently said all her other children were provided for, however in her Will she wanted these items to be given to the poor rather than her son. Also relating to Dud, her Will contained the phrase "she willed that her son...should not see her writings, because, as she said, he might do somebody wrong". 'Her writings' can be taken to mean either her Will or her personal correspondence or diary. Dud did go on to contest his mother's Will. He argued that he should be the one in ownership of the lands, ironworks, stoneworks and coal pits in Tipton, Sedgley, Kingswinford, Rowley Regis and Oldbury. He also demanded Tipton Park and Parkfield which his mother had bought.
Additionally, Elizabeth wrote in her Will that all of her "wearing apparel" was to be divided between her five daughters. After some small bequests to family members and servants, Elizabeth left all else in her possession to be divided equally between her eight surviving children. 

Boleyn to Delaware


So what is the connection between Anne Boleyn and the American state of Delaware?

Thomas Boleyn (1477-1539) and Elizabeth Howard (1480-1538) married before 1499 and had three children together; Anne, Mary and George Boleyn.
George Boleyn (1504-36) married Mary Parker (1505-42) in 1525 but their marriage was childless.
Anne Boleyn (1501-36) had only one child with her husband Henry VIII who she married in 1533, Elizabeth Tudor (1533-1603), who herself remained unmarried and childless until her death.
It was their daughter Mary Boleyn (1499-1543) who had children with both of her husbands; Catherine (1524-69) and Henry (1526-96) by her first husband William Carey (1500-28) whom she married in 1520, and Anne and Edward (1535-45) by her second husband William Stafford (d.1556) who she married in 1534. There are speculations that either or both of the Carey children were actually fathered by King Henry VIII.
Mary Boleyn
William Carey
Catherine Carey married Sir Francis Knollys (1514-96) in April 1540 and they had fourteen children together; Lettice, Henry, Elizabeth, William, Edward, Robert, Richard, Thomas, Francis, Anne, Catherine, Cecily, unnamed daughter and unnamed child who died young.

Catherine Carey
Francis Knollys
Their third daughter Anne Knollys (1555-1608) married in November 1571 to Thomas West, Baron De La Warr (1556-1602) and they had thirteen children together; Walsingham, Elizabeth, Robert, Margarey, Thomas, Lettice, Anne, Penelope, Catherine, Francis, Helena, John and Nathaniel.  

Anne Knollys
Thomas West, 2nd Baron De La Warr
Of their thirteen children, their sons Francis and John were both Governors of Virginia and their son Nathaniel also went to Virginia; the family had close ties to the English royal court and also to the increasing English presence in America. Thomas and Anne's son Thomas was the oldest son still alive after his fathers death, and so he inherited the baronetcy.

Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr

Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr (1577-1618) was educated at Oxford and later served in the army under the Earl of Essex, who knighted him in Dublin in 1599. He was implicated in Essex's rebellion in 1601 and imprisoned, Essex personally asked for West's fathers pardon for endangering his son. Upon his father's death in 1602 he became the next Baron De La Warr and became a member of the Privy Council of Elizabeth I, and later a privy councillor to James I. In 1596 he married Cecily Shirley by whom he had one son Henry, and established his Shirley plantation on the James River, which he named after his wife. In 1609 he became a member of the superior council of Virginia in England.
On the 28th February 1610 Thomas West was appointed governor of the Virginia colony for life. In June, Thomas West took a party of 150 men made up of emigrants and workmen, and sailed to Jamestown in Virginia in order to try to quell the fighting and uprisings from the colony, he arrived just in time to stop the abandonment by the temporary governor Gates. Upon his arrival he sent his boat back to collect the departing English settlers and had them returned to Jamestown. West then ordered the town to be cleaned and the frail houses rehabilitated. The four acre settlement was re-secured for the inhabitants, and then West moved to make peace with the local Native American Indians, driving the tribe back. West then had two forts erected on the Hampton river, named Charles and Henry for protection for the settlement. In 1618 on a sea crossing from England to Virginia, Thomas West died. 
The river and bay were renamed Delaware in honour of Thomas West, and this is where the name of the state originated.

When Thomas Boleyn married his eldest daughter Mary to William Carey in 1520 it is doubtful that he could have imagined an American state would one day be named after one of his descendants. 

Monday, 18 August 2014

Margaret almost-Neville

The King-maker Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick (1428-71), as well as having two daughters with his wife Anne Beauchamp, also had an illegitimate daughter before his marriage; Margaret. 


Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick

Margaret Neville was born around 1450 in the north of England. The identity of her mother is unknown, however it seems likely that she was a member of the Tilliol or Moresby families. It is clear that Richard Neville provided for his illegitimate daughter, and she may have been raised in his household as a member of the family. It would seem that Margaret had a good relationship with her legitimate siblings, as she was a lady-in-waiting to her half-sister Anne Neville when she became queen.


On the 12th June 1464, Margaret married Sir Richard Huddleston (1440-85). Richard was the son of John Huddeston and Mary Fenwick. Her father provided a marriage dowry of £200 as well as lands in Coverdale worth £6 a year, the manors of Blennerhasset and Upmanby, and lands in Penrith. 

Margaret and Richard had three children together;
+ Richard Huddleston (1476-1503) m. Elizabeth Dacre
+ Margaret Huddleston (b.1479) m. Lancelot Salkeld
+ Joan Huddleston (b.1480) m. Hugh Fleming 
Richard was killed at the Battle of Bosworth, after fighting for King Richard III. Richard's father John Huddleston of Millom Castle fought at Bosworth at the side of King Richard, and once the battle was over, John and his other son Henry fled and went into hiding. They were later summoned to give themselves in, and luckily received pardons from the new king Henry VII.

After Richard died at Bosworth, Margaret remarried before 1492 to Sir Lancelot Threkeld (d.c.1512).

Lancelot had three children from his first marriage to Elizabeth Radcliffe;
+ Grace Threkeld
+ Elizabeth Threkeld
+ Winifred Threkeld
Margaret had no children from her second marriage, and she died on the 17th October 1499. After Margaret's death, her husband Lancelot continued to stand as guardian for her son Richard until he came of age in November 1502. After Richard's early death in 1503, the Huddleston inheritance passed jointly to his sisters Margaret and Joan due to Richard and wife not having any children, and after them to their father's younger brother, John Huddleston (1445-1512).

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

The Burgh Bastards

Elizabeth Owen (d. bef 1551) was the daughter of David Owen (1459-1535) and his last wife Anne Devereux. As a child of David Owen, Elizabeth was therefore a blood relative of the Tudor monarchs.

Elizabeth Owen married Sir Thomas Burgh (d.1542) between 1529 and 1535.
Thomas was the eldest surviving son and heir apparent of Lord Thomas Burgh (1488-1550), whose family seat was Gainsborough Old Hall in Lincolnshire.
Elizabeth and Thomas' children were;
+ Margaret Burgh (b.1535)
+ Humphrey Burgh (b.1537)
+ Arthur Burgh

Lord Burgh, Thomas' father, claimed that the three children were not fathered by Thomas, but instead argued that Elizabeth had been unfaithful and the children had a different father and therefore he believed they should not inherit his title or wealth. Lord Burgh threw Elizabeth and the children out of his house, and so she returned to her mother's house.
In 1542 an Act of Parliament was passed with made the three Burgh children illegitimate and unable to inherit the Burgh estate. The Act stated that "during the life of her husband she had lived in adultery, not regarding the company of her husband, and in that time had brought forth three children, begotten by other persons than her said husband during the espousal" and "as she had confessed, which children being so gotten and born in adultery, during the said espousals, by the laws of this realm, be legitimate, and will be inheritable and inherit, &c. after the death of the said Lord Burgh".
As early as 1535, Lord Burgh - Elizabeth's father in law - was trying to bastardize the children; as seen from Elizabeth's letters to Thomas Cromwell begging him for his protection and defending her innocence.
However, Lord Burgh left a bequest in his will to his granddaughter Margaret of 700 marks when he died in 1550. The reason for this bequest is unclear as he leaves nothing to Elizabeth's other two children.

Gainsborough Old Hall, Lincolnshire

Katherine Parr, who became the sixth wife of King Henry VIII, was previously married  in 1530 to Lord Burgh's eldest son Edward Burgh (1507-33). Depending on the date of marriage between Elizabeth and Thomas, it is possible that Katherine and Elizabeth knew each other as sister-in-laws and spent time together. During her years as queen (1543-7), Katherine paid Elizabeth a pension from her own accounts.
The reason for Katherine's kindness towards Elizabeth can be understood through the work of Katherine Parr's biographer Susan James. Susan James discusses Lord Burgh's behaviour towards his family in that he was controlling and domineering over his sons. Also mentioned is the apparent mental illness suffered by members of the Burgh family; seen in Lord Burgh in the way he demanded total obedience from his family and the violent rages he flew into. Lord Burgh's own father had been known by many to be a lunatic. Therefore it is highly possible that Elizabeth's infidelity was an invention of Lord Burgh's mind and his son was simply too afraid to stand up to his father. Katherine and her husband Edward lived the first two years of their marriage in the family manor, and Katherine was unhappy during this time as she often expressed in frequent letters to her mother Maud Parr. It was only after moving out from under Lord Burgh's roof that Katherine began to enjoy married life.

In addition to Queen Katherine's aid, Elizabeth was also helped by other relatives; William FitzWilliam, Earl of Southampton, left his cousin Elizabeth 20 marks in his Will when he died in 1542.