Henry Brandon, 1st Earl of Lincoln

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Henry Brandon
1st Earl of Lincoln
Henry Brandon, Earl of Lincoln.jpg
A portrait once thought to be of Edward VI, now thought to be of Henry Brandon.[by whom?]
Died1 March 1534 (aged 10–11)
Southwark, England
FatherCharles Brandon, 1st Duke of Suffolk
MotherMary Tudor, Queen of France

Henry Brandon, 1st Earl of Lincoln (ca. 1523 – 1 March 1534[1]) was the youngest child and second son[2] born to Charles Brandon, 1st Duke of Suffolk and Mary Tudor, Queen of France, who was a daughter of Henry VII, King of England. Thus Henry Brandon was nephew to King Henry VIII. His older sisters were Lady Frances Brandon and Lady Eleanor Brandon.[3]

He and his older brother (1516–1522[4]) are often mistakenly thought to be the same person, because both died as children and bore the same name. It was not unusual in Tudor times to name a child after a deceased sibling.

Earl of Lincoln[edit]

Brandon was created Earl of Lincoln by Henry VIII on 18 June 1525 at the age of only two.[5] He was "so young that Sir John Vere was appointed to carry him"[6] during the elaborate ceremony. His father planned a marriage for him with Catherine Willoughby, a peeress in her own right and daughter of Maria de Salinas, who had been one of the queen's ladies-in-waiting.[7]

Role in the line of succession[edit]

Throughout Brandon's life, there was a small but real possibility that he would one day become king of England. At the time of his birth, Mary was Henry VIII's only child, and the king's wife, Catherine of Aragon, was already past the age of thirty and had little prospect of having any more children. Next in line after the king's children was his sister Margaret Tudor, and her children, but their place in the succession was not secure – Henry would later exclude them by the Second Succession Act (1536), and by his will. Next in line after that came the Duchess of Suffolk and her son Henry Brandon, who during his own lifetime (he died before Henry's son Edward was born), was the only person in the line of succession who had the twin qualifications of being male, and English. However, he died at the age of ten or eleven, in Southwark.

Brandon's mother predeceased him, and his own death created royal ambitions in his sister Frances. After the death of the Duchess of Suffolk, the Duke married Catherine Willoughby himself. Though his son was betrothed to her, at ten he was too young for marriage and also sickly.[8][9] Henry Brandon's niece Lady Jane Grey eventually, and briefly, succeeded to the throne on 10 July 1553.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ [1] "Yesterday morning died the earl of Lincoln..." Letter, dated 2 March 1534, William Lord Dacre to Lady Dacre In: 'Henry VIII: March 1534, 1–5', Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, Henry VIII, Volume 7: 1534 (1883)
  2. ^ Brandon family tree In: Starkey, David (Hg): Rivals in Power: Lives and Letters of the Great Tudor Dynasties Macmillan, London 1990, p. 39
  3. ^ Burke's Peerage
  4. ^ Perry, Maria: The Sisters of Henry VIII: The Tumultuous Lives of Margaret of Scotland and Mary of France, Da Capo Press Edition, 2000, p. 154.
  5. ^ [2] "...the lorde Henry Brandon, sonne to the duke of Suffolke and the Frenche Quene the kynges sister, a childe of twoo yere old, was greated Erle of Lincolne..." In: Hall's chronicle: containing the history of England, during the reign of Henry the Fourth, and the succeeding monarchs, to the end of the reign of Henry the Eighth, in which are particularly described the manners and customs of those periods. Carefully collated with the editions of 1548 and 1550, London 1809, p. 703
  6. ^ [3] "...The King's nephew, Henry [...] was so young that Sir John Vere was appointed to carry him..." In: William S. Childe-Pemberton: Elizabeth Blount and Henry the Eighth, with some account of her surroundings, 1913, p. 138
  7. ^ Grimsthorpe estate Archived 22 January 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ [4] "On Sunday next the duke of Suffolk will be married to the daughter of a Spanish lady named lady Willoughby. She was promised to his son, but he is only ten years old..." Imperial Ambassador Eustace Chapuys to Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor In: 'Henry VIII: September 1533, 1–10', Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, Henry VIII, Volume 6: 1533 (1882)
  9. ^ "...Lincoln was sickly [...] and Suffolk did not wish to gamble on his son's survival and risk losing Catherine's lands. So he married her himself." In: "Starkey, David (Hg): Rivals in Power: Lives and Letters of the Great Tudor Dynasties Macmillan, London 1990, p. 178