Savage family

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House of Savage
Noble family
Arms of Arnold Savage (d.1375).svg
Coat of arms of Savage: Argent, six lions rampant, sable
Country Kingdom of England, Kingdom of Great Britain, United Kingdom
Place of origin Normandy
Founded11th century
FounderThomas Le Sauvage
Titles
MottoA te pro te ('From thee, for thee')
Estate(s) Rocksavage
Clifton Hall
Halton Castle
Frodsham Castle
Beeston Castle
Melford Hall
Stainsby

The Savage family is an English noble family founded by Thomas Le Sauvage (Savage), who came to England as part of William the Conqueror's Norman army in 1066 and settled in Derbyshire after the conquest, taking residence in Scarcliffe. [1] [2] Thomas Le Sauvage's name appears in a list of Normans who survived the Battle of Hastings. [1] In the 14th century a branch of the family was established in Cheshire, [2] and this was the place where they became most prominent, with several members ascending to the peerage and positions of power such as Archbishop of York. [2] The Cheshire branch of the family built the primary family seat Rocksavage, the house was one of the great Elizabethan houses of the county and a leading example of the Elizabethan prodigy house. There were further branches of the family in Dorset, Gloucestershire and Kent, as well as one in Ireland, which was created following the arrival of Sir William Savage, Baron Savage in Ulster as a companion of Sir John de Courcy. Many of the family are buried in tombs in the family chapel at St Michael's Church, Macclesfield.

Contents

The ruins of Rocksavage Primary seat of the Savage family Rocksavage c1818.jpg
The ruins of Rocksavage Primary seat of the Savage family

History

Tomb of Sir John Savage, Knight of the Garter Maccnave03.jpg
Tomb of Sir John Savage, Knight of the Garter
Archbishop Savage.png
York Minster, York (13451854344).jpg
Effigy and Tomb of Archbishop Thomas Savage
Thomas Savage, 1st Viscount Savage Cornelis-jonson-van-ceulen-portrait-of-sir-thomas-savage,-1st-viscount-savage-(1589-1635),-three-quarter-length,-seated,-in (cropped).jpg
Thomas Savage, 1st Viscount Savage
Tomb of Major General Thomas Savage, 3rd Earl Rivers in the Savage Chapel at St Michael's Church Macclesfield, Cheshire, UK Rivers Memorial St Michaels Macclesfield Cheshire UK.jpg
Tomb of Major General Thomas Savage, 3rd Earl Rivers in the Savage Chapel at St Michael's Church Macclesfield, Cheshire, UK
Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson by George Frederic Watts.jpg
Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson

The family was founded by Thomas Le Sauvage (Savage), who came to England as part of William the Conqueror's Norman army in 1066 and following the conquest gained land in Derbyshire where he settled, taking residence in Scarcliffe. [2] The Savages became established members of the landed gentry and in the 14th century a branch of the family was established in Cheshire [2] when Sir John Savage (1343–1386) married Margaret d'Anyers, heiress of Clifton and other lands around what became called Rocksavage, this was the place where the family became most prominent. One of the first members of the Cheshire branch of the family to gain prominence was Sir John Savage (died 1450), who served Henry V of England in his wars in France and was knighted by the King after the Battle of Agincourt, [2] gaining influence in the County Palatine especially in Macclesfield where the Savage chapel would be built in St Michael's Church. This branch of the family would also build the primary family seat of Rocksavage, only a short distance from their previous seat of Clifton Hall.

The Savages married into several notable noble families such as the Stanleys and the Morleys. Before eventually ascending to the peerage themselves, first as Viscounts Savage and later as Earls Rivers. [3]

The men of the Savage family have often received the first name John, which has caused some degree of confusion when investigating the Savage lineage. For nearly two centuries the family heir was always named John, and at times there could be as many as four John Savages. [4] One Sir John Savage was knighted by Henry V for his service at the Battle of Agincourt whilst another Sir John Savage was one of the main commanders of Henry VII's army at the Battle of Bosworth Field leading the left flank to victory that day and is said to have personally slain the Duke of Norfolk in single combat, [5] already a Knight of the Bath he was later made a Knight of the Garter (the most senior order of knighthood in England) following Henry's ascension to the throne. [6] The family titles became extinct on the death of the 5th Earl Rivers in 1737, who having been a Catholic priest was unmarried and had no issue. He had inherited the title from his cousin Richard Savage, 4th Earl Rivers a General in the British Army who had no legitimate male heir. The families primary seat of Rocksavage remained in the family until late in the 18th century when the last heiress in the direct line married into the Cholmondeley family and the estate passed to them. [7] The house was deemed surplus to requirements with the family already possessing Cholmondeley House (now Cholmondeley Castle), and the estate quickly fell into disrepair and ruin. Today only sections of the house's garden and orchard walls remain. [7]

Prominent family members

Arms of the Savage Family

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References

  1. 1 2 Armstrong, George Francis. The ancient and noble family of the Savages of the Ards. pg9
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Dymond D, Savage Fortune - An Aristocratic Family in the Early Seventeenth Century, introduction xvi
  3. Dymond D, Savage Fortune - An Aristocratic Family in the Early Seventeenth Century, introduction xli
  4. On the Laws and Customs of England: Essays in Honor of Samuel E. Thorne. edited by Morris Arnold, Thomas A. Green, Sally A. Scully, Stephen D. White
  5. Brereton, H. The most pleasant song of Lady Bessy: the eldest daughter of King Edward the Fourth, and how she married King Henry the Seventh of the House of Lancaster p.46 (Text taken from the Ballad of Lady Bessy a contemporary primary source)
  6. "List of the Knights of the Garter (1348-present)". www.heraldica.org.
  7. 1 2 Dymond D, Savage Fortune - An Aristocratic Family in the Early Seventeenth Century, introduction lxxxiii