John Hussey, 1st Baron Hussey of Sleaford

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John Hussey, 1st Baron Hussey of Sleaford
Markle's direct ancestor, Lord Hussey - beheaded at King Henry's orders in 1537.jpg
c. 1533–1570 portrait of Hussey
Personal details
Born 1465/1466
Sleaford, Lincolnshire, England
Died 1536[1]/1537[2] (aged c. 70)
Lincoln, Lincolnshire, England
Nationality English
Spouse(s) Margaret Blount
Anne de Grey
Children 12
Parents Sir William Hussey
Elizabeth Berkeley
Residence Sleaford
Occupation Chief Butler of England

John Hussey, 1st Baron Hussey of Sleaford (sometimes spelled Hosey, Husey, Hussie, Huse;[3] 1465/1466 – 1536/1537) was Chief Butler of England[2] from 1521 until his death. He was a member of the House of Lords, and a Chamberlain to King Henry VIII's daughter, Mary I of England.

Early years[edit]

Hussey was born in Sleaford, Lincolnshire, England, son of Sir William Hussey, an English judge and Chief Justice of the King’s Bench. His mother was the former Elizabeth Berkeley.[4] Hussey's siblings included Sir Robert Hussey (d. 1546), the father of Elizabeth Hussey, the 'Mistress Crane' at whose home at East Molesey the first of the Marprelate tracts, Martin's Epistle, was printed in October 1588; Elizabeth Hussey, who married Richard Grey, 3rd Earl of Kent; and Mary Hussey, who married William Willoughby, 11th Baron Willoughby de Eresby.

In 1497, at the Battle of Blackheath, Hussey was knighted. Six years later, he was made "Knight of the Body", bodyguard to King Henry VII, followed by an appointment as "Master of Lyfield Forest", Rutland in 1505 and Comptroller of the Household in 1509. On 16 August 1513, at Tournai, after the Battle of the Spurs, he and his brother William were promoted to Knights Banneret by Henry VIII.


Arms of Hussey: Barry of six ermine and gules[5]

In 1493 Hussey was appointed Sheriff of Lincolnshire and by 1513 he was custos rotulorum for the county. On 6 July 1523, he was elected Member of Parliament as a knight of the shire for Lincolnshire. Three years later, 5 February 1526, he was appointed a judge.

He was created Lord Hussey, of Sleaford, by King Henry VIII in 1529.[6] On 3 November 1529 he was re-elected to Parliament as knight of the shire for Lincolnshire but received a Writs of Summons on 1 December 1529 to the House of Lords as 'Johannes Hussey de sleford, chivaler'. In June 1530, Hussey was named Lincolnshire Castle's Commissioner for Gaol Delivery, and later that same year, Hussey sold some of his large holdings (the Somersetshire manors of Batheaston, Bathampton, Bathford, Twerton; the Wiltshire manors of Compton Bassett, Comerwell, and North Wraxall).[7]

Henry VIII "lodged" at Hussey's Sleaford estate where he held court the next morning before venturing to York to meet with the King of Scotland.[8]

On 10 September 1533, Lord Hussey attended the christening of Elizabeth, daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, and carried the canopy over the three-day old child with George Boleyn, Viscount Rochford, Lord Thomas Howard, and William Howard, 1st Baron Howard of Effingham.[9]

Hussey was Chamberlain to King Henry's daughter, Mary, while Hussey's second wife, Lady Anne, was one of Mary's attendants. Though King Henry forbade anyone from calling his daughter, Mary, by the title of Princess, Lady Anne did do so, after which she lost her attendant position around June 1534 and was imprisoned in the Tower of London in August. Asking for the King's pardon, she was released before the end of the year.[10]

In addition to his responsibilities at Court and Parliament, Hussey was steward to John Longland, the conservative Bishop of Lincoln,[11] and King Henry's confessor.[12]


Hussey Tower: The ruins of Lord Hussey's medieval manor house – Hussey Tower – are all that is left following the orders of King Henry VIII to destroy it.[13][14]

Hussey was implicated along with his cousin Lord Darcy as complicit in the 1536 uprising known as the Pilgrimage of Grace. Though Hussey denied participation in the rebellion, he was accused of conspiring to change laws and depose the king, and that he abetted those who made war on the king in October 1536.[15] The charges may have been levied in part because of Hussey's Catholic sympathies,[16] and because Hussey and his wife, having served 'Princess' Mary, were partisans on her behalf.[17] Hussey was indicted and tried for treason, and found guilty by the House of Lords. He was beheaded in Lincoln in 1536,[1] while his cousin, Thomas Darcy, was executed on Tower Hill.[10] Hussey's statement ("confession") survives.[18]


John Hussey firstly married Dame Margaret Barr (née Blount), widow of Sir John Barr and daughter of Sir Simon Blount,[19][20][21] around 1492 at Keynsham, Gloucestershire, by whom he had issue:[22]

  • Sir William Hussey (c. 1493 – 19 January 1556)
  • Sir Giles Hussey (c. 1495/1505 – Knighted by the Earl of Surrey at the Sacking of Morlaix in France in 1522,[23][24] who married Jane Pigot, and had issue, including Thomas Hussey (born 1526) married to Bridget Bowes, the parents of George Hugh Hussey, married and reported father of John Hussey (buried 24 May 1632 in Dorking, Surrey[25]) who married Mary Wood (Moor) in 1593. The son of John and Mary Hussey was Captain Christopher Hussey (Dorking, 1599 – Hampton, New Hampshire, 1686), who was a founder of Nantucket and the first person in Hampton, New Hampshire to swear allegiance to King Charles II who had been restored to the throne of England. As a "principal original settler" of Hampton, Capt. Hussey took the oath on 10 April 1678 and was one of "ten councellors commissioned by the king for the government" of New Hampshire upon its separation from Massachusetts on 18 September 1679, according to "Acts of the Privy Council."[26][27] Capt. Hussey was a representative to the New Hampshire Council from 1679 to 1685.[28][29][30][31] Capt. Hussey's daughter, Huldah Hussey (c. 1643–1740), is recorded in the volume, Daughters of the American Colonists.;[32][33] his descendants include President Richard Nixon twice, actor James Dean and entrepreneur J. A. Folger. One of his direct descendants is Mary (Bessie) Hussey Smith (1823–1908), the great-great-great-grandmother of Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. The NEHGS, however, questioned the descent of Captain Christopher Hussey from John Hussey, 1st Baron Hussey of Sleaford, as they stated that noble ancestry for Captain Hussey "seems highly unlikely".[34]
  • Elizabeth Hussey (c. 1497)
  • Sir Gilbert Hussey (c. 1499)
  • Reginald Hussey (c. 1501)

John Hussey secondly married Lady Anne Grey in 1509 at Sleaford, Lincolnshire. According to historian Sir William Dugdale, in the documents written by Hussey, shortly before his death in 1537, he speaks of his wife as 'Anne'.[35] She was the daughter of George Grey, 2nd Earl of Kent – by his second wife, Catherine Herbert. Lady Anne's paternal grandmother was Lady Katherine Percy, the great-great-granddaughter of King Edward III of England.[36] John Hussey and Lady Anne Grey had issue, including:[10]

After his execution, Hussey's home in Sleaford,[1] as well as his other estates, were confiscated by the crown.[4] In 1563, his children were restored to Parliament during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I of England, but Hussey's title was forfeited, and the estates were not returned.[10]

Claim of Hussey Barony[edit]

Lord Hussey's brother – Sir Robert Hussey and his son Sir Charles Hussey – adapted to the political requirements of the recently established Church of England; both serving in the office of sheriff.[39] However, the descendants of the anti-Church of England Lord Hussey, whose barony and estates were forfeited, were left in far less secure positions, both regarding their financial and social status; by 1633, the descendants of Lord Hussey's son, Sir Giles Hussey, had left England to freely practice their non-conformist religion in New England.[40][41]

Lord Hussey's descendants who remained in England included Molineux Disney, a direct descendant of Sir William Hussey, who was the "Son and Heir to the said John Lord Hussey." On 21 March 1680, Molineux Disney made a claim to King Charles II that as, "son and heir, in the direct line to Lord Hussey" he was entitled to claim the Hussey barony. However, W. B. Turnbull noted in 1836 that "no entry occurs in the Lord's Journal relative to any preceedings upon it". Molineux had apparently withdrawn his application.[42]


  • 6 December 1533, John Fewterer, Confessor-General of Syon Abbey, dedicated his book, The myrrour or glasse of Christes passion, to "the Honorable 'Lord Husey', from Syon".[10]


  1. ^ a b c "Sleaford History". 2006. Archived from the original on 15 May 2008. Retrieved 23 June 2008.
  2. ^ a b Maddison, A.R.; Larken, A.S. (1903). Lincolnshire Pedigrees. Lincolnshire: Ye Wardovr Press. p. 527. OCLC 3978908.
  3. ^ "Last name: Hussy". Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  4. ^ "A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 4. (British History On-line)". Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1911 – Version 5.0. University of London. pp. 282–285. Retrieved 12 November 2017. FREEFOLK ...In 1269 Henry Husee or Hussey acquired the manor from Nicholas Sifrewast, son of William, and he was granted free warren in his demesne lands in Freefolk in 1271. (fn. 13) He died in 1290, leaving as his heir his son Henry Hussey....Coat-of-arms: Husee. Barry of six ermine and gules
  5. ^ Moule, Thomas (1837). "The English Counties Delineated, Volume 2". Virtue. p. 192. Retrieved 4 November 2017. He was created Lord Hussey, of Sleaford, by King Henry VIII in 1529.
  6. ^ "Medieval Deeds of Bath and District"
  7. ^ White, William (1872). History, Gazetteer and Directory of Lincolnshire, and the City and Diocese of Lincoln: Comprising a General Survey of the County : and Separate Historical, Statistical and Topographical Descriptions of All the Wapentakes, Hundreds, Sokes, Boroughs... Chapter – Sleaford (Old). W. White. p. 636. Retrieved 12 November 2017.
  8. ^ Stanley, Earl of Derby, Edward (1890). Correspondence of Edward, Third Earl of Derby, During the Years 24 to 31 Henry VIII.: Preserved in a Ms. in the Possession of Miss Pfarington, of Worden Hall, Volume 19. Chetham Society. p. 89.
  9. ^ a b c d e "John HUSSEY (1st B. Hussey of Sleaford)". Retrieved 19 June 2008.[unreliable source]
  10. ^ "Annex A, Prominent Sleafordians and Local History". Retrieved 23 June 2008.[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ Fideler, P.A.; Mayer, T.F. (1992). Political Thought and the Tudor Commonwealth. Routledge. p. 98. ISBN 0-415-06672-7.
  12. ^ "Hussey Tower and King Henry VIII". Retrieved 1 November 2017.
  13. ^ Poole, David, ed. (21 November 2017). "House and Heritage – Hussey Tower, LINCOLNSHIRE". Heritage Gazette. Retrieved 27 November 2017.
  14. ^ Hoyle, R.W. (2001). The Pilgrimage of Grace and the Politics of the 1530s. Oxford University Press. p. 407. ISBN 0-19-925906-2.
  15. ^ Hoyle 2001:159
  16. ^ Hoyle 2001:67
  17. ^ Hoyle 2001:25
  18. ^ Creasey, James (1825). "Sketches, illustrative of the topography and history of new and old Sleaford – Geneaology and Biography – Hussey Family". James Creasey. p. 108. Retrieved 4 November 2017.
  19. ^ Reslen, E. (21 November 2017). "Town and Country Magazine". Hearst Communications, Inc. Retrieved 21 November 2017. Family Tree – Lord Hussey, 1st Baron Hussey of Sleaford m. (married) Dame Margaret Barr nee Blount...
  20. ^ Cracroft. "Cracroft's Peerage – The Complete Guide to the British Peerage & Baronetage – John Hussey, Baron (E, created 1529 – forfeited 1537)". Heraldic Media. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
  21. ^ Burke, B. (1866). "A Genealogical History of the Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited, and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire". Harrison. p. 294. Retrieved 31 October 2017. N.B. Burke's has order of Hussey's marriages incorrect – Hussey married Margaret Blount, daughter of Sir Simon Blount, first and Lady Anne second.
  22. ^ Collins, Arthur (1720). "The Baronettage of England: Being an Historical and Genealogical Account of Baronets from Their First Institution in the Reign of King James I : Containing Their Descents, the Remarkable Actions and Employments of Them and Their Ancestors, as Also Their Marriages, Issue, &c., with Their Coats of Arms and Crests Engrav'd and Blazon'd, Volume 1". W. Taylor. p. 258. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
  23. ^ Peile, John (25 September 2014). "Biographical Register of Christ's College, 1505–1905". Cambridge University Press. p. 38. Retrieved 29 October 2015.
  24. ^ "John Hussey and Mary Wood or Moor". Michelle Boyd. 2004. Retrieved 30 October 2015. A John Hussey, aged 74, was buried 24 May 1632 in Dorking, Surrey, England
  25. ^ Douglass, William (1755). "A summary, historical and political, of the first planting, progressive improvements, and present state of the British settlements in North-America: containing I. Some general account of ancient and modern colonies, the granting and settling of the British continent and West-India island colonies ... II. The Hudson's-Bay Company's lodges ... III. Newfoundland harbours and cod-fishery : IV. The province of L'Acadie or Nova Scotia ... V. The several grants ... united by a new charter in the present province of Massachusetts-Bay, commonly called New-England". Boston, New England, printed, London, re-printed for R. Baldwin (page 28). Retrieved 11 November 2017. ...accordingly, the king commissioned a president with ten councellors (including Christopher Hussey of Hampton) for the government a principal original settler
  26. ^ Sanborn, Franklin Benjamin (1980). Kenneth Walter Cameron, ed. The Transcendental Eye: Historical Papers Concerning New England and Other Points on a Great Circle. Transcendental Books. Retrieved 5 November 2017. ....but its first rulers were chosen from its own people. ... of Portsmouth, Waldron of Dover, Hussey of Hampton, and others, — chiefly friends of the Massachusetts government.
  27. ^ "The Hussey Family of Hawaii – 2008". Retrieved 30 October 2017. The history of Surrey County, specifically the history of the Hussey and Stydolf families in Norbury (now "Norbury Park"), which is next to Dorking, indicates that John Hussey, father of Christopher, is the same John listed as a son of George in the English "Lincolnshire Pedigrees". (MS. C.23, Herald's College). Dorking Parish church records, Mickelham Parish records, and the connection between the Husseys of Sleaford and their double marriages to the Stuydolfs of Norbury (near Dorking) are among the reasons many, including the Plantagenet Organization (USA) now accept that this John is the son of George and Elizabeth Hussey (and not Hugh Hussey and Ellen Devereux as stated in some incorrect genealogies) – N.B. Author incorrectly lists Sir Giles Hussey as son of Lady Anne. Sir Giles is son of Margaret – Lord Hussey's first wife.
  28. ^ "Hussey family". Tudor Place. 2015. Retrieved 29 October 2017. N.B. Author incorrectly lists Sir Giles Hussey as son of Lady Anne. Sir Giles is son of Margaret – Lord Hussey's first wife.
  29. ^ Cracroft (2006). "Cracroft's Peerage – The Complete Guide to the British Peerage & Baronetage – John Hussey, Baron (E, created 1529 – forfeited 1537)". Heraldic Media. Retrieved 30 October 2017. N.B. – Author incorrectly lists Sir Giles Hussey as son of Lady Anne. Sir Giles is son of Margaret – Lord Hussey's first wife.
  30. ^ Hoyt, D. W. (1897). The Old Families of Salisbury and Amesbury, Massachusetts – With Some Related Families of Newbury, Haverhill, Ipswich, and Hampton, and of York County, Maine. Genealogical Publishing Com.
  31. ^ "Daughters of the American Colonists". The Daughters. 1957. Retrieved 29 October 2017. Descendant of John Eastman, Christopher Hussey, Ephraim Marston, Jeremiah Marston, ... 1677 Abial Sanborn (1653–1743); John Smith (d. 1708) m. 1667 Huldah Hussey (c.1643–1740). 9. Robert Tuck....
  32. ^ Burke, B. (1861). "A Genealogical History of the Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited, and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire". Harrison. p. 294 second. Retrieved 31 October 2017. N.B. Burke's has order of Hussey's marriages incorrect – Hussey married Margaret Blount first and Lady Anne
  33. ^ "Royal Ancestry of Meghan Markle". Archived from the original on 2017-12-01. Retrieved 2017-12-01.
  34. ^ Dugdale, Sir William (1894). J.W. Clay, ed. Visitations of Yorkshire, WITH ADDITIONS. W. Pollard & Company. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  35. ^ Burke, B.; Burke, J. (1866). A genealogical history of the dormant, abeyant, forfeited, and extinct peerages of the British Empire. London: Harrison. OCLC 11501348.
  36. ^ Angerville, H. (1959). Living descendants of blood royal , Volume 1. Madison: World Nobility and Peerage.
  37. ^ Foster 1883, p. 93.
  38. ^ Burke, J. (1841). "A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Extinct and Dormant Baronetcies of England, Ireland and Scotland". Scott, Webster, and Geary. p. 275). Retrieved 6 November 2017.
  39. ^ Stackpole, E.S. (1916). History of New Hampshire, Volume 1. New York – American Historical Society (New Hampshire). Retrieved 6 November 2017. ...Court, had two hundred and fifty acres -apiece, and Christopher Hussey, son-in-law of Mr. Bachiler, had the same number. ... He (Bachiler) was born in England about 1561, went to Holland as a dissenter, came to Boston in 1632 and settled at Lynn as minister.
  40. ^ Kimble, S. T. (1994). The Kimbles of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and Cecil County, Maryland. Gateway Press. Retrieved 6 November 2017. Sir John Hussey, Baron of Sleaford, b. ca 1466, m. (1) Margaret Barr... Capt. Christopher Hussey, bapt. Feb 18, 1599, Dorking, Surrey, Eng., d. Mar 6, 1686, Hampton, Rockingham Co., NH, m. Jan 15, 1628 ... They were Quakers. Christopher Hussey...
  41. ^ Disney, Molineux (1836). Claim of Molineux Disney, esq. to the barony of Hussey (21st March, 1680) – with remarks by W. B. Turnbull. Edinburgh Printing Company. Retrieved 6 November 2017.

External links[edit]

Peerage of England
New creation Baron Hussey
Succeeded by