John Boxall

Last updated

John Boxall (died 1571) was an English churchman and secretary of state to Mary I of England.

Secretary of State (England) appointed position within the government of England

In the Kingdom of England, the title of Secretary of State came into being near the end of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I (1558–1603), the usual title before that having been King's Clerk, King's Secretary, or Principal Secretary.

Mary I of England Queen of England and Ireland

Mary I, also known as Mary Tudor, was the Queen of England and Ireland from July 1553 until her death. She is best known for her aggressive attempt to reverse the English Reformation, which had begun during the reign of her father, Henry VIII. The executions that marked her pursuit of the restoration of Roman Catholicism in England and Ireland led to her denunciation as "Bloody Mary" by her Protestant opponents.


Catholic statesman

He was a native of Bramshott in Hampshire. After studying at Winchester School he was admitted a perpetual fellow of New College, Oxford, in 1542, where he took his degrees in arts. He took orders, but, being opposed to the Protestant Reformation, he did not act as minister during the reign of Edward VI.

Bramshott village in United Kingdom

Bramshott is a village with mediaeval origins in the East Hampshire district of Hampshire, England. It lies 0.9 miles (1.4 km) north of Liphook.

Hampshire County of England

Hampshire is a county on the southern coast of England. The county town is the city of Winchester. Its two largest cities, Southampton and Portsmouth, are administered separately as unitary authorities; the rest of the county is governed by Hampshire County Council.

New College, Oxford constituent college of the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom

New College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1379 by William of Wykeham, the full name of the college is St Mary's College of Winchester in Oxford. The name "New College", however, soon came to be used following its completion in 1386 to distinguish it from the older existing college of St. Mary, now known as Oriel College.

On Queen Mary's accession he was not appointed her majesty's secretary of state, but dean of Ely (also archdeacon and prebendary there). He continued to a primary influence in the Marian church first as prebendary of Winchester, and Warden of Winchester College (1554) as successor to John White. [1] Boxall was one of the divines who were chosen to preach at St Paul's Cross in support of the Catholic religion; John Pits relates that on one occasion a bystander hurled a dagger at him, other writers assert that this happened to Dr. Pendleton, but John Stow that Gilbert Bourne occupied the pulpit on the occasion referred to.

Dean of Ely

The position of Dean of Ely Cathedral, in East Anglia, England, in the Diocese of Ely was created in 1541 after the Dissolution of the Monasteries. The first Dean of Ely had been the last Benedictine prior of Ely.

Winchester College school in Winchester, Hampshire, England

Winchester College is an independent boarding school for boys in the British public school tradition, situated in Winchester, Hampshire. It has existed in its present location for over 600 years. It is the oldest of the original seven English public schools defined by the Clarendon Commission and regulated by the Public Schools Act 1868.

John White (1510–1560) was an English bishop, a Roman Catholic who was promoted in the reign of Mary Tudor.

On 23 September 1556 Boxall was sworn as a member of the privy council; also as one of the masters of requests and a councillor of that court. Finally elevated by Queen Mary's favour he was appointed Secretary of State in March 1557. In July he was made Dean of Peterborough; on 20 December following he was installed Dean of Norwich, and about the same time Dean of Windsor. He was elected registrar of the Order of the Garter on 6 February 1558, and in 1558 was created Doctor of Divinity and appointed prebendary of York and Salisbury. As the Queen Mary lay dying he was already one of the richest men in England; allowed ten retainers, he was one of the overseers of Cardinal Pole's will.

Dean of Peterborough

The Dean of Peterborough is the head of the chapter at Peterborough Cathedral. On the Dissolution of Peterborough Abbey in 1539 and the abbey-church's refoundation as a cathedral for the new bishop and diocese of Peterborough, care for the abbey/cathedral church passed from an abbot to a dean. The current Dean of Peterborough is Chris Dalliston

Dean of Norwich

The Dean of Norwich is the head of the Chapter of Norwich Cathedral in Norwich, England. Jane Hedges was installed as Dean on 21 June 2014.

Dean of Windsor head of the Canons of St Georges Chapel at Windsor Castle

The Dean of Windsor is the spiritual head of the Canons of St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, England. The Dean chairs meetings of the Chapter of Canons as primus inter pares. The post of dean of Wolverhampton was assimilated to the deanery of Windsor, around 1480.

Declining fortunes

Boxall was removed from the office of secretary of state by Queen Elizabeth, on her accession, to make way for William Cecil, to whom he acted helpfully. Having been deprived of his ecclesiastical preferments, he was on 18 June 1560 committed to the Tower of London by Archbishop Matthew Parker and other members of the ecclesiastical commission; subsequently he was in custody at Lambeth Palace with Thomas Thirleby, Cuthbert Tunstall and other Catholics. He was removed at different periods to Bromley and Beaksbourne, remaining still in the archbishop's charge. On 20 July 1569 Boxall, then in custody at Lambeth, wrote to Sir William Cecil requesting leave to visit his mother. Eventually the ailing Boxall was allowed to go to the house of a relative in London, where he died on 3 March 1571. His brothers Edmund and Richard were appointed administrators of his property.

Elizabeth I of England Queen regnant of England and Ireland from 17 November 1558 until 24 March 1603

Elizabeth I was Queen of England and Ireland from 17 November 1558 until her death on 24 March 1603. Sometimes called The Virgin Queen, Gloriana or Good Queen Bess, Elizabeth was the last of the five monarchs of the House of Tudor.

William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley English statesman

William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley, was an English statesman, the chief advisor of Queen Elizabeth I for most of her reign, twice Secretary of State and Lord High Treasurer from 1572. Albert Pollard says, "From 1558 for forty years the biography of Cecil is almost indistinguishable from that of Elizabeth and from the history of England."

Tower of London A historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames in central London

The Tower of London, officially Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress of the Tower of London, is a historic castle located on the north bank of the River Thames in central London. It lies within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, separated from the eastern edge of the square mile of the City of London by the open space known as Tower Hill. It was founded towards the end of 1066 as part of the Norman Conquest of England. The White Tower, which gives the entire castle its name, was built by William the Conqueror in 1078 and was a resented symbol of oppression, inflicted upon London by the new ruling elite. The castle was used as a prison from 1100 until 1952, although that was not its primary purpose. A grand palace early in its history, it served as a royal residence. As a whole, the Tower is a complex of several buildings set within two concentric rings of defensive walls and a moat. There were several phases of expansion, mainly under Kings Richard I, Henry III, and Edward I in the 12th and 13th centuries. The general layout established by the late 13th century remains despite later activity on the site.


He published a Latin sermon preached in a convocation of the clergy in 1555 and printed at London in the same year. He also wrote an Oration in the Praise of the Kinge of Spaine, left in manuscript in Latin, and probably composed in May or June 1555, on the report of the queen having been delivered of a prince.

Related Research Articles

Lancelot Andrewes English divine

Lancelot Andrewes was an English bishop and scholar, who held high positions in the Church of England during the reigns of Elizabeth I and James I. During the latter's reign, Andrewes served successively as Bishop of Chichester, of Ely, and of Winchester and oversaw the translation of the King James Version of the Bible. In the Church of England he is commemorated on 25 September with a Lesser Festival.

Edmund Grindal Archbishop of Canterbury

Edmund Grindal was an English Protestant leader who successively held the posts of Bishop of London, Archbishop of York and Archbishop of Canterbury during the reign of Elizabeth I of England. Although born far away from the centres of political and religious power, he had risen rapidly in the church during the reign of Edward VI, and was nominated Bishop of London, but the death of the King prevented him taking up the post and along with other marian exiles he fled to the continent during the reign of Mary I. On the accession of Elizabeth I he returned and resumed his rise in the church, culminating in his appointment to the highest office.

Matthew Hutton (archbishop of York) Archbishop of York

Matthew Hutton (1529–1606) was archbishop of York from 1595 to 1606.

Dean of St Patricks Cathedral, Dublin

The Dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral is the senior cleric of St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin, elected by the chapter of the cathedral. The office was created in 1219 or 1220, by one of several charters granted to the cathedral by Archbishop Henry de Loundres between 1218 and 1220.

John Scory was an English Dominican friar who later became a bishop in the Church of England.

Christopher Goodman BD (1520–1603) was an English reforming clergyman and writer. He was a Marian exile, who left England to escape persecution during the counter-reformation in the reign of Queen Mary I of England. He was the author of a work on limits to obedience to rulers, and a contributor to the Geneva Bible. He was a friend of John Knox, and on Mary's death went to Scotland, later returning to England where he failed to conform.

Henry Cole was an English Roman Catholic churchman and academic.

John Harpsfield (1516–1578) was an English Catholic controversialist and humanist.

William Mowse was an English lawyer and Master of Trinity Hall, Cambridge.

Perceval Wiburn or Wyburn (Percival) (1533?-1606?) was an English clergyman, a Marian exile, suspected nonconformist and Puritan, and polemical opponent of Robert Parsons.

Nicholas Robinson was a Welsh bishop of Bangor.

Richard Cheyney was an English churchman, bishop of Gloucester from 1562. Opposed to Calvinism, he was an isolated and embattled bishop of the reign of Elizabeth, though able to keep his see.

William Bradbridge English bishop

William Bradbridge (1501–1578) was an English bishop of Exeter.

Bartholomew Traheron (1510?–1558?) was an English Protestant writer and Marian exile.

Thomas Martin (1520/21–1592/93), of Winterbourne St. Martin, Dorset; Steeple Morden, Cambridgeshire, and London, was an English lawyer, controversialist and politician. He was prominent in the trial of Thomas Cranmer.

John Pory (1502/03–1570) was an English churchman and academic, Master of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge.

Roger Kelke (1524–1576) was an English churchman and academic, a Marian exile and Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge from 1558 and Archdeacon of Stow from 1563.

Francis Newton was an English clergyman who served as Dean of the Winchester Cathedral from 1565 until his death in 1572.


  1. Kirby, Thomas Frederick (1888). Winchester scholars. A list of the wardens, fellows, and scholars of Saint Mary college of Winchester, near Winchester, commonly called Winchester college. London: H. Frowde.

The public domain consists of all the creative works to which no exclusive intellectual property rights apply. Those rights may have expired, been forfeited, expressly waived, or may be inapplicable.

<i>Dictionary of National Biography</i> Multi-volume reference work

The Dictionary of National Biography (DNB) is a standard work of reference on notable figures from British history, published since 1885. The updated Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (ODNB) was published on 23 September 2004 in 60 volumes and online, with 50,113 biographical articles covering 54,922 lives.

Political offices
Preceded by
Sir William Petre
Sir John Bourne
Secretary of State
With: Sir John Bourne
Succeeded by
Sir William Cecil