Sunday, 21 September 2014

Dacre marriages

Humphrey Dacre (1424-85) and his wife Mabel Parr (1441-1508) had nine children together;
+ Thomas Dacre (1467-1525) m. Elizabeth Greystoke (1471-1516)
+ Elizabeth Dacre (b.1464) m. Richard Huddleston
+ Hugh Dacre
+ Christopher Dacre (b.1470)
+ Philip Dacre m. Anne Grey
+ Ralph Dacre
+ Humphrey Dacre
+ Anne Dacre m. Thomas Strangeways (1491-1525)
+ Katherine Dacre (1484-1527) m1. George FitzHugh (d.1513) m2. Thomas Neville (1484-1542)

Humphrey Dacre died in 1485, leaving his widow to arrange advantageous marriages for their children. The Dacre family were at this time out of favour with the new king, Henry VII, due to their turn-coat behaviour during the Wars of the Roses in that they continued to change sides and therefore their loyalty could not be depended upon by the new Tudor king. Therefore it was important that the Dacre children married into families who had been loyal to the Tudor cause throughout the wars.

In 1488, Mabel's eldest son Thomas Dacre abducted the wealthy heiress Elizabeth Greystoke (1471-1516), a descendant of John of Gaunt with familial ties to the Woodville family, and married her. Elizabeth was the sole heir to her grandfather Ralph Greystoke, due to her father Robert Greystoke having predeceased his father in 1483, and inherited his vast estates in Northumberland when he died in 1487.
Thomas and Elizabeth had eight children together;
+ Mabel Dacre m. Henry Scrope
+ William Dacre m. Elizabeth Talbot
+ Anne Dacre m. Christopher Conyers
+ Mary Dacre m. Francis Talbot
+ Jane Dacre m. Lord Tailboys
+ Humphrey Dacre
+ Elizabeth Dacre m. Thomas Musgrave
+ Philippa Dacre

Mabel's daughter Elizabeth went down a similar route for her marriage. In 1494 Elizabeth had fallen in love with the sixteen year old Richard Huddleston of Millom (1481-1502), at this time she was about seventeen years his senior. Mabel kidnapped Richard and forced him to marry her daughter Elizabeth. As Richard was not of legal age when his father died, he had become a ward of the Crown, and therefore Mabel had committed a crime as his marriage was to be dependent upon the king's permission. Mabel and Elizabeth were arrested and imprisoned at Lancaster Castle. The prison conditions were harsh and it was there that Elizabeth died "overcome with melancholy and remorse", Elizabeth's brother Thomas claimed that she died due to the distress of her mother's imprisonment. Mabel was released after nine months imprisonment, on the condition that a fine be paid of 1000 marks. Richard Huddleston did not remarry, and he died in October 1503 at the age of just 27 years. There is a tomb in Millom church which commemorates Richard Huddleston and his wife Elizabeth Dacre.

Richard and Elizabeth Huddleston tomb, Millom Church

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