Michael de la Pole, 1st Earl of Suffolk
|Michael de la Pole|
Arms of De la Pole: Azure, a fess between three leopard's faces or
|Died||5 September 1389 (aged 58–59)
|Children||Michael de la Pole, 2nd Earl of Suffolk|
|Parent(s)||William de la Pole
His father was a wool merchant from Hull who became a key figure during the reign of Edward III: after the collapse of the Bardi and Peruzzi families, he emerged as Edward's chief financier. Michael enjoyed even greater popularity at court than his father, becoming one of the most trusted and intimate friends of Edward's successor, Richard II.
He was appointed Chancellor in 1383, and created Earl of Suffolk in 1385, the first of his family to hold any such title. However, in the late 1380s his fortunes radically altered, in step with those of the king. During the Wonderful Parliament of 1386 he was impeached on charges of embezzlement and negligence, a victim of increasing tensions between Parliament and Richard. He was the first official in English history to be removed from office by the process of impeachment. Even after this disgrace, he remained in royal favour, although soon fell foul of the Lords Appellant. He was one of a number of Richard's associates accused of treason by the Appellants in November 1387. After the Appellants' victory at Radcot Bridge (December 1387) and before the so-called Merciless Parliament met in February 1388, De La Pole shrewdly fled to Paris, thus escaping the fate of Sir Nicholas Brembre and Chief Justice Robert Tresilian. He remained in France for the remainder of his life. Sentenced in his absence, his title was stripped from him.
Jean Froissart's references to de la Pole in the Chroniques (II.173) portray a devious and ineffectual counsellor, who dissuaded Richard from pursuing a certain victory against French and Scottish forces in Cumberland, and fomented undue suspicion of John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster.
- Michael de la Pole, 2nd Earl of Suffolk (1361 - 1415),
- Thomas de la Pole (1363 - 1415),
- William de la Pole (1365 - ),
- Richard de la Pole (c. 1367- 1402), ancestor of Cardinal Reginald Pole (1500-1558),
- John de la Pole (c. 1369 - 1415),
- Anne de la Pole (c. 1373 - ), widow of Sir Gerard de Lisle. Anne married secondly Robert Thorley, esq. and their daughter, Margaret Thorley, married Reginald West, 6th Baron De La Warr. Thus, De la Pole was ancestor to Richard West, 7th Baron De La Warr who fought on the Lancastrian side in the Wars of the Roses and his son Thomas West, 8th Baron De La Warr (c.1457 – 11 October 1525), a courtier and military commander during the reigns of Henry VII and Henry VIII.
- Elizabeth de la Pole (c. 1377 - )
- Margaret de la Pole (c. 1386 - )
- His son Michael de la Pole, 2nd Earl of Suffolk was a supporter of Henry IV and opponent of Richard. He regained his father's title on Henry's accession in 1399, and died at the Siege of Harfleur.
- His eldest grandson Michael de la Pole, 3rd Earl of Suffolk died at the Battle of Agincourt.
- His younger grandson William de la Pole, 1st Duke of Suffolk was appointed Lord Chamberlain under Henry VI, before being murdered in exile.
- His great-grandson was John de la Pole, 2nd Duke of Suffolk served Henry VII loyally, even though three of his sons rebelled.
- His great-great grandson was Edmund de la Pole, 3rd Duke of Suffolk, who led a failed rebellion against Henry VII in 1501.
- Powicke, F. Maurice and E. B. Fryde Handbook of British Chronology 2nd ed. London: Royal Historical Society 1961 p. 85
- J.S. Roskell, The Impeachment of Michael de la Pole, Earl of Suffolk in 1386 in the Context of the Reign of Richard II (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1984) ISBN 0-7190-0963-4
- MacIntyre, Ben (20 May 2017). "How an English law could topple Trump". Times. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
- Jean Froissart, Memoirs of the Life of Froissart: with an essay on his works ; and a criticism on his history, trans. by Thomas Johnes (London: Nichols and Son, 1801)
|Peerage of England|
|New creation||Earl of Suffolk
Michael de la Pole
|Baron de la Pole