Edward la Zouche, 11th Baron Zouche

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My Lord Souche[ sic ] put away this his lady twenty-nine years ago and refusing her all allowance was by law sentenced there-unto, which he not performing was excommunicate; from which he went beyond sea and returning was ordered to pay her 50s the week, from which poor allowance with a small addition from her friends hath this Baron's wife...ever since lived. She was oft dangerously sick that physic was chargeable. He never disbursed a penny, and now dead she might have rotted in her chamber ere he would have buried her. [3]

Within a year of Eleanor's death, Zouche married again, to Sarah Harington (1565-1629), daughter of Sir James Harington. Sarah Harington had been twice widowed, having been previously married to Francis Hastings, Baron Hastings, who would have been Earl of Huntingdon but predeceased his father, and Sir George Kingsmill. There were no children of this marriage. [4] [ clarification needed ] With the death of Zouche, Sarah married Sir Thomas Edmondes. Her portrait was painted by Isaac Oliver and by Cornelius Johnson. [5] The portraits by Johnson show her aged 63 wearing a large miniature case referring to Frederick V of the Palatinate with the Greek letter "phi". A similar miniature case was described in an inventory of a Scottish soldier. [6]


Portrait etching of Lord Zouche published 29 May 1777 Portrait etching of Lord Zouche published 29 May 1777.jpg
Portrait etching of Lord Zouche published 29 May 1777

Zouche matriculated from Trinity College, Cambridge in Easter 1570, M.A. 1571; [7] and was admitted to Gray's Inn, 1575, though he was not admitted to the bar.

Zouche was appointed a Commissioner for the trial of Mary, Queen of Scots, at Fotheringhay. He was the only Commissioner to offer any dissent against her judgement and subsequent sentence of death. [8]

In later years he served as Ambassador to Scotland, Lord President of the Council of Wales and Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports. He was a Privy Counsellor from 1603. [4]

Zouche was ambassador in Scotland from 5 January to 6 April 1594, at the time of the birth of Prince Henry. Sir Robert Cecil complained that he had not received updates from Zouche, and he was very displeased to hear that Zouche and the diplomat Robert Bowes had lent money to Francis Stewart, 5th Earl of Bothwell on the security of a jewel and some silver plate. They had sent the jewel to London. Cecil wanted Zouche to make the loan seem a private transaction, a purchase of a jewel, and not to be known as an action of Queen Elizabeth to fund and support Bothwell, who was suspect in Scotland. [9]

Zouche showed an interest in the New World, and was a Commissioner of the Virginia Company from 1608. He was also interested in horticulture; his house in Hackney included a physic garden and he employed Matthias L'Obel as his gardener.

The house in Hackney lay on the north side of Homerton High Street, probably on the site of the present Dean Close. The herbalist, John Gerard, visited Hackney and was given foreign seeds from Zouche's garden. Zouche ceased to be a Hackney resident before his death in 1625 and it is likely his house was sold in 1620, to Sir Julius Caesar, Master of the Rolls.

In 1605, Zouche purchased the manor of Bramshill in Hampshire and almost immediately began to build the mansion that currently stands on the site. James I stayed at Bramshill in 1620 and the next year George Abbot, Archbishop of Canterbury, went down to Bramshill to consecrate a chapel for Lord Zouche. [10] The visit had disastrous consequences for the Archbishop when he accepted Zouche's invitation to a stag-hunt, where Abbot unintentionally killed a gamekeeper who strayed into his line of fire. Although all the witnesses, including Zouche, agreed that the gamekeeper's death was a tragic accident, Abbot's reputation never recovered from the incident. He remains the only Archbishop of Canterbury ever to kill a man. [11]

Bramshill was used as the UK Police Staff College from 1960 to 2015.

Connection with More children on the Mayflower

In 1620, Lord Zouche provided counsel and other help in an incident involving him and his longtime secretary Samuel More, who was in his employ at the time of Zouche's death in 1625. [12] [13] More was the eldest son of a respected parliamentarian from Shropshire, Richard More. He had married in 1610/11 to a cousin Katherine More, [14] and by 1616 was charging that she had committed adultery with a longtime lover, conceiving four children by him: Elinor, Jasper, Richard and Mary. [15] Four rancorous years and twelve court appearances followed, culminating in 1620 with the four children being sent without their mother's knowledge [16] to the Colony of Virginia on the ship Mayflower as indentured servants, [16] upon the counsel of Lord Zouche, who was a Virginia Company commissioner, [17] [18] acting on the request of Samuel More and his father Richard, who were searching for a location far away to which the children could be sent. [19]


Lord Zouche's manor, Bramshill House BramshillHouse(AndrewSmith)Jun2006.jpg
Lord Zouche's manor, Bramshill House

Zouche died in 1625, after suffering illness for some time. His resting place is unknown. He was not buried in the parish church at Hackney, despite the verses penned by Ben Jonson.

Wherever I die, oh, here may I lie
Along by my good Lord Zouche,
That when I am dry, to the tap I may hie,
And so back again to my couch.

On Zouche's death, the Barony of Zouche fell into abeyance between his daughter Mary (who married in 1610 Thomas Leighton, son of Sir Thomas Leighton the Governor of Guernsey) [20] and the heirs of his daughter Elizabeth (died 1617, wife of Sir William Tate). [21] The abeyance was terminated in 1815 in favour of Cecil Bisshopp, 12th Baron Zouche, whose grandmother Catherine Tate was Elizabeth's heir-at-law.


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  1. HMC Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House, vol. 6 (London, 1895), p. 195, 24 May 1596.
  2. 'Original Letters of the Zouch family', The Gentleman's Magazine, Or Monthly Intelligencer, vol. 25 (London, 1828), pp. 303-4, printed from British Library Lansdown MSS.
  3. HMC Report on the Manuscripts of His Grace the Duke of Portland, Preserved at Welbeck Abbey, vol. 9 (London, 1923), pp. 83-4.
  4. 1 2 Donald F. Harris, PhD. The Mayflower Descendant (July 1994) vol. 44 no. 2 p. 110
  5. Portrait of Lady Edmondes, by Cornelius Johnson, NT Hatchlands, and Portrait of Lady Edmondes, Nelson-Atkins Museum, Kansas.
  6. Athol Murray, 'Jewels Associated with the Queen of Bohemia', Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, 131 (2001), pp. 328, 343.
  7. "Zouche, Edward La (ZC570EL)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  8. Mary Queen of Scots by Antonia Fraser – Weidenfeld & Nicolson 1969 p. 563
  9. Annie Cameron, Calendar State Papers Scotland, vol. 11 (Edinburgh, 1936), pp. 280, 283, 285-7.
  10. Victorian County History – Hampshire 'Parishes: Eversley', A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 4 (1911), pp. 32–41
  11. Trevor-Roper, Hugh Archbishop Laud Phoenix Press reissue 2000 p. 58
  12. Anthony R. Wagner. "The Children in the Mayflower" The London Times 30 June 1959 p. 11
  13. Donald F. Harris, PhD. The Mayflower Descendant vol. 44 no. 2 p. 1
  14. Shipton Parish Register Shropshire archive
  15. Donald F. Harris, PhD. The Mayflower Descendant (Pub. Jan. 1994) vol. 44 no. 2 pp. 14, 18
  16. 1 2 Anthony R. Wagner "The Origin of the Mayflower Children: Jasper, Richard and Ellen More". The New England Historical and Genealogical Register (July 1960) vol. 114 pp. 164–168
  17. Donald F. Harris, PhD. The Mayflower Descendant (Pub. July 1994) vol. 44 no. 2 p. 112
  18. The Generall Historie of Virginia, New-England, and the Summer Isles: With the Names of the Adventurers, Planters, and Governours from Their First Beginning, Ano: 1584. To This Present 1624. With the Proceedings of Those Severall Colonies and the Accidents That Befell Them in All Their Journyes and Discoveries. Also the Maps and Descriptions of All Those Countryes, Their Commodities, People, Government, Customes, and Religion Yet Knowne. Divided into Sixe Bookes. By Captaine Iohn Smith, Sometymes Governour in Those Countryes & Admirall of New England: p. 128 – electronic version at: http://docsouth.unc.edu/southlit/smith/smith.html#p21
  19. Donald F. Harris, PhD. The Mayflower Descendant (Pub. Jul. 1994) vol. 44 no. 2 pp. 110, 111
  20. The Present Peerage of the United Kingdom Part 1 (1821), p. 67; Google Books.
  21. historyofparliamentonline.org/, Tate, William (1559–1617), of Delapré, Northants.
The Lord Zouche
Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports
In office
Political offices
Preceded by Lord President of Wales
Lord Lieutenant of Wales
(less Glamorgan and Monmouthshire),
Herefordshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire

Succeeded by
Honorary titles
Preceded by Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports
Succeeded by
Peerage of England
Preceded by Baron Zouche
Succeeded by