Highways and Byways in Sussex - online book

An illustrated appreciation, of the most interesting districts in Sussex.

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98                            HOTSPUR'S DESCENDANTS                       chap.
chief friends, and, doing so, took his name. In course of time came Harry Hotspur, whose sword, which he swung at the Battle of Shrewsbury, is kept at Petworth House. The second Earl was his son, also Henry, who fought at Chevy Chase; he was not, however, slain there, as the balladmonger says, but at St. Albans. Henry, the third Earl, fell at Towton; Henry, the fourth Earl, was assassinated at Cock Lodge, Thirsk; Henry, the fifth Earl, led a regiment at the Battle of the Spurs; Henry, the sixth Earl, fell in love with Anne Boleyn, but had the good sense not to let Henry the Eighth see it. Thomas, his brother, was beheaded for treason; Thomas, the seventh Earl, took arms against Queen Elizabeth, and was beheaded in Scotland; Henry, the eighth Earl, attempted to liberate Mary Queen of Scots, and was imprisoned in the Tower, where he slew himself; Henry, the ninth Earl, was accused of assisting Guy Fawkes and locked up for fifteen years. He was set at liberty only after paying 30,000, and promising never to go more than thirty miles from Petworth House. This kept him out of London,
The last two noble Earls of Northumberland were Algernon, Lord High Admiral of England, who married Lady Anna Cecil, and planted an oak in the Park (it is still there) to commemorate the union; and Josceline, eleventh Earl, who died in 1670, leaving no son. He left, however, a daughter, a little Elizabeth, Baroness Percy, who had countless suitors and was married three times before she was sixteen. Her third husband was Charles Seymour, sixth Duke of Somerset, who became in time the father of thirteen children. Of these all died save three girls, and a boy, Algernon, who became seventh Duke of Somerset. Through one of the daughters, Catherine, who married Sir William Wyndham, the estates fell to the present family. The next important Lord of Petworth was George O'Brien Wyndham, third Earl of Egremont, the friend of art and agriculture, who collected most of the pictures. The present owner is the third Baron Leconfield.
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