LETTICE KNOLLYS

Who was Lettice Knollys and what role did she play in the Tudor Court ?

TIME-LINE AND ADDITIONAL FACTS ON LETTICE KNOLLY'S'LETTICE WAS LADY-IN-WAITING TO QUEEN ELIZABETH 1ST OF ENGLAND AS WELL AS HER FIRST COUSIN ONCE REMOVED.

TIME LINE OF LETTICE KNOLLYS

1543
  • 8TH NOVEMBER Lettice Knolly was born at Rotherfield Greys, Oxfordshire. the daughter of Sir Francis Knollys and Catherine  Carey
1544
  • Lettice brother William Knollys is born.
1546
  • Edward Knollys is born, Lettice younger brother.
1447
1548
  • Richard Knollys Lettice younger brother is born.
1549
  • 15TH JUNE Lettice sister Elizabeth Knollys is born,
1552
  • Francis Knolly's is born, Lettice younger brother
1553
  • 7TH JULY King Edward VI  of England is dead
  • 9TH JULY The Lady Jane Grey was Queen of England for nine days
  • JULY The Lady Jane Grey is deposed and imprisoned. Now Mary Tudor is Queen of England and brings backCatholicismm.
1555
  • 18TH JULY Lettice sister Anne Knollys is born.
1556
  • Lettice family went to Frankfurt in Germany to escape religious persecution under Queen Queen Mary . It is unknown if Lettice went with them.
1558
  • 27TH SEPTEMBER Walter Devereux, Lettice husband is now 2nd Viscount Hereford and 10th Baron Ferrers of Chartley
  • 17TH NOVEMBER Quen Mary Tudor is dead and now her half-sister, Lettice's cousin Elizabeth  is Queen of all England
1559
  • JANUARY Lettice family return to England
  • 21ST OCTOBER Lettice younger sister Catherine Knollys is born
1560
  • Lettice married Walter Devereux, Viscount Hereford.
1562
  • 8TH MAY Dudley Knollys, Lettice brother is born and died the same year.
1563
  • JANUARY Lettice's daughter Penelope Devereux is born at Chartley Castle in Staffordshire
1564
  • Dorothy Devereux is born, Lettice's daughter born at Chartley Castle, Staffordshire, England
1565
  • SUMMER Lettice returned to court
  • 16TH JULY Lettice brother Henry married Margaret Cave.
  • 10TH NOVEMBER Robert Devereux is born, Lettice son at Netherwood near Bromyard, Herefordshire, England
1568
1569
  • 15TH JANUARY Lettice mother Catherine Carey died at Hampton Court Palace . Catherine is Buried St Edmund's Chapel, Westminster Abbey
  • Walter Lettice's son is born
1570
  • 18TH NOVEMBER Anne Knollys Lettice sister married Thomas West, 2nd Baron De La Warr
1572
  • 4TH MAY Walter, Lettice's husband Walter Devereux was raised to the earldom of Essex and Viscount Bourchier
  • 17TH JUNE Lettice's husband Walter is created a knight of the Garter
1573
  • Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester sent her a present of venison to Chartley from his seat Kenilworth Castle in Warwickshire . It is around now that it is believed that she became involved with Robert Dudley.
1574
  • Lettice made hunting visits to Kenilworth
1575
  • JULY Lettice was present when Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester entertained Queen Elizabeth with a magnificent 19-days festival at Kenilworth castle
  • DECEMBER Lettice's husband Walter returns home to England.
1576
  • JULY Lettice's husband Walter returns to Ireland
  • Lettice made hunting visits to Kenilworth
  • 22ND SEPTEMBER Walter,Devereux Lettice's husband died of dysentery at Dublin castle.
  • Lettice's son Robert becomes a ward of William Cecil, Lord Burghley
1578
  • Lettice's sister Elizabeth Knollys married Sir Thomas Leighton of Feckenham
  • 21ST SEPTEMBER Lettice married Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester.
1581
  • 10TH JANUARY Letice'd daughter Lady Penelope Devereux married Robert Rich, 1st Earl of Warwick
  • Letice is banished from court after Queen Elizabeth learns of Lettice and Robert Dudley's marriage.
  • JUNE Lettice moved to move to Leicester House on the Strand.
  • JUNE Robert, Lord Denbigh Lettice and Robert Dudley's son are born.
  • Edward Knollys Lettice brother died.
1582
  • 21ST DECEMBER Lettice brother Henry Knollys died
1583
  • JULY Lettice's daughter Dorothy married Sir Thomas Perrot of Haroldston
  • Lettice is resident at Leicester House,
1584
  • Queen Elizabeth  informed ambassadors that Lettice Dudley was "a she-wolf" and her husband a "traitor" and "a cuckold"
  • 19TH JULY Lettice and Robert Dudley son Robert Dudley, Lord Denbigh died at Wanstead at the age of three years old.
1585
  • George Gower paints a portrait of Lettice.
1587
  • Robert Lettice son is now a favourite of Queen Elizabeth  1st of England and by June he is master of the Horse.
1588
  • 4TH SEPTEMBER Robert Dudley Earl of Leicester died at Cornbury Park, Oxfordshire
  • OCTOBER The funeral of Robert Dudley. Lettice attends her husband funeral at Warwick. Robert is buried at Collegiate Church of St Mary, Warwick
1589
  • Lettice son Robert takes part in Francis Drake's English Armada,
  • SPRING Lettice married for a third time to Christopher Blount. Blout was a relative of Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester on the Earl's mother's side
1590
1591
  • Lettice's second son, Walter Devereux, died while on military duty
1593
  • Lettice sister Mary died.
  • Lettice s sold Leicester House to her son, Robert after which it became known as Essex House. She moved to Drayton Bassett near Chartley in Staffordshire, her main residence for the rest of her life
1594
  • Lettice's daughter Dorothy married secondly to Henry Percy, 9th Earl of Northumberland
1595
  • Nicholas Hilliard paints a miniature of Lettice
1596
  • 21st AUGUST Richard Knollys Lettice brother died.
1598
  • JANUARY-MARCH Lettice travelled to London, staying at Essex House Lettice sought to be reconciled with Queen Elizabeth. At last a short meeting was granted in which the Countess kissed the Queen and "the Queen kissed her", but nothing really altered.
1599
  • Robert, Lettice's son was imprisoned. Lettice came to London to intercede for him with the Queen. She tried to send Elizabeth a present in form of a gown, which Elizabeth neither accepted nor refused.
1601
  • FEBRUARY The Essex rebellion. This was an unsuccessful rebellion led by Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, in 1601 against Elizabeth  I of England and the court faction led by Sir Robert Cecil to gain further influence at court
  • 25TH FEBRUARY Robert Devereux Lettice's so is executed for high treason,
  • During the trial and execution of her son Robert, Lettice remained at Drayton Basse She said .she not only lost her son but her "best friend", as she called her third husband
  • 18TH MARCH Lettice's third husband Sir Christopher Blount is executed for treason at Tower Hill. For his role in the Essex Rebellion.
1603
  • 27TH MARCH Queen Elizabeth  1st England is dead and King James VI of Scotland is now James 1st of England.
  • Lettice brother Willliam is created Baron Knollys
  • Penelope, Lettice's daughter becomes Lady of the Bedchamber to Anne of Denmark, the wife of James 1st England
  • Lettice grandson Robert Devereux had his father titles and lands restored to him under King James of England and the lands that had been taken from his father Robert Devereux 2nd earl Essex. The King also quickly cancelled the rest of Lettice's debts to the Crown, which was almost £4,000.
1604
  • FEBRUARY Lettice went to the court of the Star Chamber, to defend her widow's rights. Robert Dudley, the Illegitimate son came forward trying to make claims as to what he believed was his. She was supported by Sir Robert Sidney, who considered himself the only legitimate heir of his uncles Leicester and Warwick. During the proceedings, 56 former servants and friends of the Earl of Leicester testified that he had always regarded Dudley as his illegitimate son Lettice case was successful.
1605
  • Robert Rich, 1st Earl of Warwick divorced Letice's daughter Penelope
  • Lettice sister Elizabeth Knollys, Lady Leighton died.
  • Henry Percy, 9th Earl of Northumberland, Lettice's son-in-law is arrested for his role in the Gunpowder Plot
  • 23RD DECEMBER Lettice brother William married for a second time to Lady Elizabeth Howard
  • 26TH DECEMBER Penelope married Charles Blount in a private ceremony conducted by his chaplain, William Laud
1607
  • 7TH JULY Penelope, Lettice's daughter died in London, England
1608
  • 30TH AUGUST Lettice's sister Anne Knollys died.
1619
  • 3RD AUGUST Lettice's daughter Dorothy Percy Countess of Northumberland died
1620
  • 20th DECEMBER Lettice younger sister Catherine Knollys died
1625
1632
  • 25TH MAY Lettice brother William Knollys died.
1634
  • 25TH DECEMBER Lettice Knolly died at the age of ninety-one at Drayton Bassett, Staffordshire, England
 
Lettice Knolly's was buried near her second husband, Robert Dudley in The Beauchamp Chapel of the Collegiate Church of St Mary, Warwick, Warwickshire, England

EXTRA FACTS ON LETTICE KNOLLYS

  • Lettice Knollys was Countess of Essex and Countess of Leicester

 

  • Lettice was the daughter of Francis Knollys who English courtier in the service of Henry VIII, Edward VI and Elizabeth I. She was the granddaughter of Mary Boleyn. Making her first cousin once removed to Queen Elizabeth 1st of England.

 

  • Lettice grew up at the royal court and was very close to the then Princess Elizabeth Tudor

 

  • Lettice's grandmother was Mary Boleyn. Mary Boleyn was a mistress of King Henry VIII of England, prior to Anne Boleyn her sister. Two of Mary children were conceived around this period. Catherine Lettice's mother and Henry Lettice uncle. Neither were acknowledge as illegitimate children of Henry VIII, however, court gossip left food for thought.

 

  • Many of Lettice family were at the Royal court. Catherine, Lettice mother wasMaid of Honour to both Anne of Cleves and Catherine Howard and later chief Lady of the Bedchamber to Queen Elizabeth 1st of England. Lettice brother William was Comptroller of the Household for Elizabeth I andTreasurer of the Household to King James 1st England. Elizabeth Knollys, Lady Leighton Lettice's sister was maid of honour to Queen Elizabeth. Then Lettice#s daughter Dorothy became a lady in waiting to the Quen Elizabeth.

 

  • Lettice's second husband Robert Dudley was favourite to Queen Elizabeth I and Lettice son Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex was another favourite of Queen Elizabeth.

 

  • Queen Elizabeth never forgave her cousin, nor could she ever accept the marriage of Lettice and Robert Dudley. Lettice was permanently banished from court. Lettice's movements through London were resented by the Queen, let alone summer visits to Kenilworth by husband and wife. Robert Dudley had been close to the Knollys family since the early 1550s; several of Lettice's brothers had been in his service and his marriage only enhanced his relations with her siblings

 

  • All throughout her life, Lettice cared for her siblings, her children. She was very close to her daughters until their deaths in 1607 and 1619. Lettice even at the age of ninety-one was still walking a mile a day.

FICTIONAL PORTRAYS OF LETTICE KNOLLYS

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