John de Vere, 16th Earl of Oxford

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John de Vere
Earl of Oxford
Born1516
Died3 August 1562 (aged 45–46)
Oxford, Oxfordshire, England
BuriedCastle Hedingham, Essex
Noble familyDe Vere
Spouse(s)Dorothy Neville
Margery Golding
Issue
FatherJohn de Vere, 15th Earl of Oxford
MotherElizabeth Trussell

John de Vere, 16th Earl of Oxford (1516 – 3 August 1562) was born to John de Vere, 15th Earl of Oxford and Elizabeth Trussell, daughter of Edward Trussell. He was styled Lord Bolebec 1526 to 1540 before he succeeded to his father's title.

Career[edit]

While never of consequence in the Tudor court,[1] the 16th Earl's support for Queen Mary was instrumental in her accession to the throne in 1553,[2] though he was given no preferment by her.[3] During her reign he was active as the principal magnate in Essex.[4] Under Mary, Essex men and women suspected of heresy against Catholicism were brought before Oxford to be charged, and thence conveyed to the Bishop of London for examination. Of his prisoners, at least sixteen were condemned and burnt, beginning with his former servant, Thomas Hawkes,[5] who was burnt at Coggeshall on 10 June 1555.[6] He was followed by Nicholas Chamberlain, William Bamford, and Thomas Ormond.[7][8] On 28 April 1556, another six men charged by the earl were burnt at Colchester.[9] A seventh, John Routh, was executed on 27 June.[10] Five more prisoners indentured by the earl that year[11] were released, but continued obstinate in their refusal of Catholic practices, and were re-arrested, condemned, and burnt at Colchester on 2 August 1557: William Bongeour, Helen Ewring, William Munt, his wife Alice Munt, and her daughter, Rose Allen.[12]

Family[edit]

He married first Dorothy Neville, daughter of Ralph Neville, 4th Earl of Westmorland in Holywell, Shoreditch, London on 3 July 1536, and second Margery Golding in Belchamp St Paul on 1 August 1548.[13] Dorothy Neville (died c. 6 January 1548),[14] His two marriages produced three children. With his first wife, Dorothy, he had Katherine de Vere, who married Edward Windsor, 3rd Baron Windsor. With Margery he had a son, Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford, and a daughter, Mary de Vere. Margery died on 2 December 1568. After his death in Oxford, he was buried in Castle Hedingham, Essex, on 31 August 1562.

Cultural pursuits[edit]

The Earl was known as a sportsman, and like several noblemen of his day, he retained a company of actors. The troupe, known as Oxford's Men, was retained by the Earl from 1547 until his death in 1562.[15][16] His circle included the scholar and diplomat Sir Thomas Smith and his brothers-in-law, the poets Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey and Edmund Sheffield, 1st Baron Sheffield, and the translator Arthur Golding.[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Nelson, Alan H. (2003), Monstrous Adversary: the life of Edward de Vere,17th Earl of Oxford, Liverpool University Press, ISBN 978-0-85323-678-8, p. 33.
  2. ^ MacCulloch, Diarmaid (1984), The Vita Mariae Angliae Reginae of Robert Wingfield of Brantham, Royal Historical Society, pp. 263–4, 266.
  3. ^ Loades, David (1989), Mary Tudor: A Life, Basil Blackwell, pp. 181–184.
  4. ^ Nelson, 23.
  5. ^ Foxe, John (1570) The Unabridged Acts and Monuments Online or TAMO, (HRI Online Publications, Sheffield, 2011), Book 11: 1797. Accessed 17 February 2017.
  6. ^ Foxe, 1806.
  7. ^ Foxe, John, The Unabridged Acts and Monuments Online or TAMO (1570 edition) (HRI Online Publications, Sheffield, 2011), Book 11, 1816-1817. Available from: http://www.johnfoxe.org [Accessed: 02.4.17].
  8. ^ Foxe, John, The Unabridged Acts and Monuments Online or TAMO (1570 edition) (HRI Online Publications, Sheffield, 2011), Book 11, 1818. Available from: http://www.johnfoxe.org [Accessed: 02.4.17].
  9. ^ Foxe, John, The Unabridged Acts and Monuments Online or TAMO (1570 edition) (HRI Online Publications, Sheffield, 2011), Book 11, 2128. Available from: http://www.johnfoxe.org [Accessed: 02.4.17].
  10. ^ Foxe, John, The Unabridged Acts and Monuments Online or TAMO (1570 edition) (HRI Online Publications, Sheffield, 2011), Book 11, 2135-2136. Available from: http://www.johnfoxe.org [Accessed: 02.4.17]
  11. ^ Foxe, John, The Unabridged Acts and Monuments Online or TAMO (1570 edition) (HRI Online Publications, Sheffield, 2011), Book 12, 2197. Available from: http://www.johnfoxe.org [Accessed: 02.4.17].
  12. ^ Foxe, John, The Unabridged Acts and Monuments Online or TAMO (1570 edition) (HRI Online Publications, Sheffield, 2011), Book 12, 2238-2242. Available from: http://www.johnfoxe.org [Accessed: 02.4.17].
  13. ^ Essex Record Office T/R 168/2
  14. ^ Nelson 2003, p. 15.
  15. ^ Chambers, E. K. The Elizabethan Stage, 4 vols. (Oxford, 1923) II: 99.
  16. ^ Nelson, pp. 13, 239.
  17. ^ Ward, Bernard M. (1928), The Seventeenth Earl of Oxford, 1550–1604: From Contemporary Documents, John Murray, p. 10.

External links[edit]

Peerage of England
Preceded by
John de Vere
Earl of Oxford
1540–1562
Succeeded by
Edward de Vere