Anglo-French Relations The Cloak of Secrecy A personal voyage of detection

George Kendall, Spy and a founder of Jamestown, Virginia

In the house called ‘Breakspears’ close to Harefield in Middlesex were a number of stained glass windows. It is recorded that these include the arms of both Ambrose and Robert Dudley, and as for their mother Jane, they also include the arms of both De La Warr and Grelley. (The Gentleman’s Magazine (1823) – Volume 93., Part 2, p211 – Urban S.)

Whether this tightened the feeling of de Foix kinship I do not know, but it would seem probable. Robert Dudley then married Lettice Knollys, and her sister Anne was married to Thomas West (De La Warr). At this time too, the Wests seem to have rather carelessly lost the Barony of Manchester, which had been inherited from the extinct English Grelley, through the non-payment of mortgage dues to a Mr. Lacy.

Given this background, if there were Kendalls of Jean de Foix descent in England, one might expect them to be not very far away from either the Court, or the Dudleys, or the De La Warrs.

The Dudleys had lived dangerously. Northumberland had come to the height of his power through replacing Somerset as the leader of the Council of the young Edward VI. The latter was keen to ensure the protestant succession, and when he knew that he was dying he drew up ‘My devise for the Succession’. It is likely that Northumberland had a hand in this, since it named Lady Jane Grey as Edward’s successor. The basis for this was that she was the grand-daughter of Mary Tudor, Henry VIII’s sister.

Northumberland did not hang around. A double marriage was arranged for 21 May 1553 – Jane Grey married Guildford Dudley, and her sister Catherine Grey married Henry Herbert (made Earl of Pembroke, in 1570). That day too Catherine Dudley married Henry Hastings (Earl of Huntingdon), who also had a claim to the throne.

On 6th July 1553 King Edward died and Jane Grey succeeded him. This situation only lasted for nine days. Then the divided Council and Mary’s supporters consigned Jane to the Tower and Mary to the Throne. Jane and Guildford Dudley and his father all lost their heads on the well-used Tudor block. The other Dudley brothers resided in the Tower of London with an uncertain future.



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