Mildmay was the eldest son of Sir Walter Mildmay and Mary Walsingham, sister of Sir Francis Walsingham. He inherited the family estate of Apethorpe, Northamptonshire, in 1589. He went to Peterhouse, Cambridge, and delivered an oration with much success when the Queen visited the college on 9 August 1564. He entered Gray's Inn in 1579.
Knighthood and ambassadorship
He was knighted in 1596, when he was appointed as ambassador to Henry IV of France. "I always knew him," wrote Chamberlain soon after Mildmay had settled in Paris, "to be paucorum hominum, yet he hath ever showed himself an honourable fast frend where he found vertue and desert". The French King complained of Mildmay's ungenial manner and of the coldness with which he listened to the praises of the Earl of Essex. At an interview in March 1597 Henry ordered him out of his chamber and threatened to strike him. He returned home later in the year, and declined an invitation to resume the post in 1598.
Mildmay died on 11 September 1617, and was buried at Apethorpe, Northamptonshire where an elaborate monument was erected to his memory. A portrait is at Emmanuel College, Cambridge. By his marriage in 1567 with Grace (d. 27 July 1620), daughter and co-heiress of Sir Henry Sharington of Lacock Abbey, in Wiltshire, he left an only child, Mary, who married Francis Fane, 1st Earl of Westmorland, and was mother of Mildmay Fane, 2nd Earl of Westmorland.
- Lee 1894, p. 390
- "Myldmay, Anthony (MLDY562A)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
- Lee 1894, p. 390, cites: Nichols's Progresses, i. 173
- Lee 1894, p. 390, cites: Reg. ed Foster, p. 55.
- Lee 1894, p. 390, cites: Chamberlain, Letters, p. 2.
- Lee 1894, p. 390, cites: Birch, Memoirs, ii. 305
- Lee 1894, p. 390, cites: Bridges, Northamptonshire, ii. 425
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Lee, Sidney (1894). "Mildmay, Walter". In Lee, Sidney. Dictionary of National Biography. 37. London: Smith, Elder & Co. pp. 388–390.
- Ford, L. L. (2004), "Mildmay, Sir Walter (1520/21-1589)", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, retrieved 4 March 2011
- MILDMAY, Anthony (c.1549-1617) of Apethorpe, Northants