Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk
|Duke of Norfolk|
|Noble family||House of Howard|
|Father||Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey|
|Mother||Frances de Vere|
|Born||10 March 1536|
|Died||2 June 1572
Tower Hill , London, England
Norfolk was the son of the poet Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey. He was taught as a child by John Foxe, the Protestant martyrologist, who remained a lifelong recipient of Norfolk's patronage. His father predeceased his grandfather, so Norfolk inherited the Dukedom of Norfolk upon the death of his grandfather, Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk in 1554.
Norfolk was the second cousin of Queen Elizabeth I through her maternal grandmother, Lady Elizabeth Howard, and he was trusted with public office despite his family's history and leanings towards Catholicism (although he was brought up a Protestant). It was the 4th Duke of Norfolk who commissioned Thomas Tallis, probably in 1567, to compose his renowned motet in forty voice-parts, Spem in alium.
Marriages and plots
Thomas Howard's first wife was Mary FitzAlan, who after the death of her brother Henry in 1556 became heiress to the Arundel estates of her father Henry FitzAlan, 19th Earl of Arundel. She died after a year of marriage, having given birth to a son:
- Philip Howard (28 June 1557 – 19 October 1595), who became 20th Earl of Arundel.
It is from this marriage that modern Dukes of Norfolk derive their surname of 'FitzAlan-Howard' and their seat in Arundel. Though her funeral effigy is there, Mary FitzAlan was never buried at Framlingham, but at the church of St. Clement Without, Temple Bar and then (under the direction of her grandson's will) at Arundel.
Margaret's children by her marriage to Norfolk were:
- Thomas Howard, 1st Earl of Suffolk;
- Lord William Howard, ancestor of the Earls of Carlisle;
- Elizabeth Howard;
- Margaret Howard;
Norfolk's three sons by his first two wives, Philip, Thomas, and William, married, respectively, Anne, Margaret, and Elizabeth Dacre. The Dacre sisters were the daughters of Elizabeth Leyburne by her marriage to Thomas Dacre and were, therefore, stepsisters to Norfolk's sons.
Norfolk was Earl Marshal of England and Queen's Lieutenant in the North. From February to July 1560, Norfolk was commander of the English army in Scotland in support of the Lords of the Congregation opposing Mary of Guise. He negotiated the Treaty of Berwick (1560) by which the Congregation invited English assistance.
Attempted fourth marriage, plots and death
Following his release, he participated in the Ridolfi plot with King Philip II of Spain to put Mary on the English throne and restore Catholicism in England, though the strength of the evidence for his participation in the Ridolfi plot is doubted by some. He was executed for treason in 1572. He is buried at the Church of St Peter ad Vincula within the walls of the Tower of London.
In books and film
- Thomas Howard appears as a character in the Philippa Gregory novels The Virgin's Lover and The Other Queen, and in the novel I, Elizabeth by Rosalind Miles.
- A highly fictionalized version of the 4th Duke of Norfolk appears as a villain, played by Christopher Eccleston, in the 1998 film Elizabeth.
- Another version of the Duke is in the BBC mini-series The Virgin Queen, played by Kevin McKidd.
John George Howard, a Toronto architect who claims to be related to the Duke.
- The marvellous chance: Thomas Howard, Fourth Duke of Norfolk, and the Ridolphi plot, 1570-1572 by Francis Edwards (1968) ISBN 0-246-64474-5
- Murdin, William, Collection of State Papers, 1571-1596, London (1759), papers from Norfolk's treason trial 1568-1572.
- Thomas Howard, Fourth duke of Norfolk by Neville Williams (1965) ASIN B0007DRE5Y
- Thomas Howard: Fourth Duke of Norfolk by The Benedictine Brethren of Glendalough, edited by William Cooke Taylor (2005) ISBN 1-4254-6159-X
- "Howard, Thomas (1536-1572)". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.
- "Churchmouse: Framlingham, Suffolk. Church of St. Michael the Archangel". Homepage.ntlworld.com. May 2, 2000. Retrieved September 7, 2012.
- Calendar of State Papers Scotland, vol. 1 (1898), 323, 440.
- HMC: Manuscripts of the Earl of Salisbury at Hatfield, vol.1 (1883), p.461.
The Duke of Norfolk
The Earl of Shrewsbury
The Earl of Sussex
|Lord Lieutenant of Norfolk
|Peerage of England|
|Duke of Norfolk
Title next held byThomas Howard
|Earl of Surrey
Title next held byThomas Howard