Adrian Fortescue (martyr)
|Blessed Adrian Fortescue|
|Died||9 July 1539
Tower Hill, London, England
|Honored in||Roman Catholic Church|
|Beatified||13 May 1895 by Pope Leo XIII|
Adrian Fortescue was the son of Sir John Fortescue of Ponsbourne Park at Newgate Street Village in Hertfordshire, and a cousin of Anne Boleyn's father. He was descended from Richard Fortescue, younger brother of Sir Henry Fortescue(fl. 1426), Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas in Ireland and of Sir John Fortescue (ca. 1394 – ca. 1480), Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, all sons of Sir John Fortescue, of Wimpstone, in the parish of Modbury, Devon, appointed in 1422 Captain of the captured Castle of Meaux, 25 miles NE of Paris.
He was made a Knight of the Bath in 1503 and participated in England's wars against France in 1513 and 1523. He was made a Knight of the Order of St. John in 1532. Sir Adrian was also a Dominican Tertiary.
On 29 August 1534, he was arrested without any stated reason but was freed after a period of months. In 1539, he was one of sixteen people condemned for treason without a trial by Parliament for unspecified acts presumably relating to hostility to Henry VIII's church policies. He was beheaded at the Tower of London on 9 July 1539.
Fortescue married Anne Rede, widow of Sir Giles Greville and daughter of Sir William Rede of Boarstall, Buckinghamshire. After Fortescue's death Anne married, as her third husband, Sir Thomas Parry, Comptroller of the Household to Queen Elizabeth.
- "Fortescue, Adrian". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.
- Morris SJ, Fr. John, The Venerable Sir Adrian Fortescue, Burns & Oates, Ltd., London, 1887