Griffin Markham

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Sir Griffin Markham (d. aft. 1644) was an English soldier.


He was the son of Thomas Markham (1530-1607) and Mary Griffin (1540-ca.1633) of Ollerton, Nottinghamshire.[1] He likely converted to Roman Catholicism early in his life, under the influence of his mother.[1]

On 29 May 1592, he married Anne Roos.[2] He was knighted in 1591 by Earl of Essex at the siege of Rouen.[1]

During the Nine Years War he commanded the cavalry under Sir Conyers Clifford, and his opportune arrival and counter-charge after the defeat of the infantry at the Battle of Curlew Pass (1599) saved the army from complete disaster. His right arm was broken during the affray.

Markham was banished from court for unknown reasons around 1593.[3] Although he had anticipated the accession of King James I with a degree of hope, his disappointment at the new monarch's lack of favour, he took part in the Bye Plot and subsequently the Main Plot, for which he was convicted (1603) and sentenced to death.[1] However, he was reprieved from execution and exiled (1605).[4] His properties were given to his cousin, Sir John Harington.

He spent the rest of his life in exile in Europe, acting as a spy for Robert Cecil,and joining the English regiment in the Low Countries; there he fell out with Sir Edmund Baynham, a conspirator in the Gunpowder Plot, and fought a bloody duel with him.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d Nicholls, Mark (2008) [2004]. "Markham, Griffin". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/18066.  (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  2. ^ Markham, p. 104
  3. ^ Markham, p. 100
  4. ^ Markham, p. 102
  5. ^ Markham 1893.