|Died||20 September 1501 (aged 46)|
|Resting place||Astley, Warwickshire|
|Title||1st Marquess of Dorset|
1st Earl of Huntingdon
7th Baron Ferrers of Groby
|Spouse(s)||Lady Anne Holland|
Cecily Bonville, 7th Baroness Harington
|Children|| Thomas Grey, 2nd Marquess of Dorset |
Leonard Grey, 1st Viscount Grane
Elizabeth Grey, Countess of Kildare
|Parent(s)|| Sir John Grey of Groby |
Thomas Grey, 1st Marquess of Dorset, 1st Earl of Huntingdon, 7th Baron Ferrers of Groby, –20 September 1501 ) was an English nobleman, courtier and the eldest son of Elizabeth Woodville and her first husband Sir John Grey of Groby. Her second marriage to King Edward IV made her Queen of England, thus elevating Grey's status at court and in the realm as the stepson of the King. Through his mother's assiduous endeavours, he made two materially advantageous marriages to wealthy heiresses, the King's niece Anne Holland and Cecily Bonville, 7th Baroness Harington. By the latter, he had 14 children.(1455
Thomas Grey was born in 1455 close to the Palace of Westminster, near the City of London. He was the elder son of John Grey (c.1432-1461) of Groby in Leicestershire, by his wife Elizabeth Woodville, who later became queen consort to King Edward IV.
His mother endeavoured to improve his estates by the conventional methods of their class and time, through his marriages and purchase of wardships. He also found favour with Edward, fighting in the Battle of Tewkesbury in 1471. Grey became Lord Harington and Bonville by right of his second wife Cecily Bonville. In 1475 he was created marquess of Dorset, and he was also a knight of the Garter and a privy councillor.
On the death of his stepfather, Edward IV, Grey proved unable to maintain his family's position. It was not possible to arrange a Woodville regency. Internal fighting, particularly the long-established battle for ascendancy in Leicestershire between the Grey and Hastings families, was now on the national stage. Richard III came to the throne when the sons of Edward IV's bastardy were declared; the Grey family was aligned with Edward.
On 25 June 1483, an assembly of Parliament declared Richard III to be the legitimate king, and Thomas's uncle, Anthony Woodville, 2nd Earl Rivers, and brother, Richard Grey, were executed. Later in the summer, learning of the apparent murder of both his young half-brothers, Grey joined the Duke of Buckingham's rebellion against Richard III. When the rebellion failed he fled to Brittany to join Henry Tudor, who pledged to marry Grey's half-sister Elizabeth of York and heal the division between the Yorkists and the Lancastrians.
However, just before Henry and the Lancastrian army left to launch their ultimately successful invasion of England in August 1485, Grey heard rumours from England that his mother had come to terms with Richard III, and he was persuaded to desert Henry Tudor. He was intercepted at Compiègne on his way to England, and played no part in the invasion or subsequent overthrow of Richard III. Grey was instead confined to Paris, as security for the repayment of a loan made to Henry Tudor by the French government, unable to return home until Henry VII was safely installed as king of England.
Thereafter Henry VII took good care to keep his half-brother-in-law under control and Grey was not permitted to recover his former influence, although his attainder was reversed. Thomas Grey was confined in the Tower in 1487 during Lambert Simnel's rising and not released until after the House of Tudor victory in the Battle of Stoke Field. Though he accompanied the King on his expedition to France in 1492, he was obliged to commit himself in writing to ensure he did not commit treason. He was permitted to assist in the suppression of the Cornish rising in 1497.
Thomas Grey, Marquess of Dorset, died in London on 20 September 1501, aged about 46, and was buried in the collegiate church of Astley, Warwickshire. His widow married Grey's cousin, Henry Stafford, later Earl of Wiltshire.
His mother sought to make provision for him by marriage to wealthy heiresses. He married firstly, at Greenwich in October 1466, Lady Anne Holland (1461 –c. 1474), the only daughter of Henry Holland, 3rd Duke of Exeter, and Anne of York. His mother-in-law was the second child and eldest surviving daughter of Richard Plantagenet, 3rd Duke of York, and Cecily Neville, thus sister to his mother's second husband King Edward IV.
After Anne Holland died young without issue, Thomas married secondly, by papal dispensation 5 September 1474,Cecily Bonville, 7th Baroness Harington of Aldingham and 2nd Baroness Bonville, the wealthiest heiress in England. Cecily Bonville, born in 1461, was the daughter and heiress of William Bonville, 6th Baron Harington, by his wife Katherine Neville, daughter of Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury. Katherine was sister to the late Earl of Warwick and thus aunt to his daughters.
By his second wife Grey had seven sons and seven daughters:
The arms of the head of the Grey family are blazoned Barry of six argent and azure in chief three torteaux gules.[ citation needed ]
Elizabeth Woodville was Queen of England from her marriage to King Edward IV on 1 May 1464 until Edward was deposed on 3 October 1470, and again from Edward's resumption of the throne on 11 April 1471 until his death on 9 April 1483.
William Hastings, 1st Baron Hastings KG was an English nobleman. A loyal follower of the House of York during the Wars of the Roses, he became a close friend and one of the most important courtiers of King Edward IV, whom he served as Lord Chamberlain. At the time of Edward's death he was one of the most powerful and richest men in England. He was executed following accusations of treason by Edward's brother and ultimate successor, Richard III. The date of his death is disputed; early histories give 13 June, which is the traditional date.
Henry Stafford, 1st Earl of Wiltshire was an English peer.
Reynold Grey, 3rd Baron Grey of Ruthyn, a powerful Welsh marcher lord, succeeded to the title on his father's death in July 1388.
Leonard Grey, Lord Deputy of Ireland, known as Lord Leonard Grey prior to 1536, served as Lord Deputy of Ireland from 1536 to 1540.
The title of Baron Bonville was created once in the Peerage of England. On 10 March 1449, Sir William Bonville II was summoned to Parliament. On his death in 1461, the barony was inherited by his great-granddaughter Cecily Bonville, who two months before succeeded as Baroness Harington, with which title the barony merged until 1554, when both baronies were forfeited. From her death in 1529 to the forfeiture in 1554, the baronies were merged with the title of Marquess of Dorset.
Elizabeth Stafford was an English noblewoman.
Thomas Grey, 2nd Marquess of Dorset was an English peer, courtier, soldier and landowner of the House of Grey.
Cecily Bonville, 7th Baroness Harington, 2nd Baroness Bonville was an English peer, who was also Marchioness of Dorset by her first marriage to Thomas Grey, 1st Marquess of Dorset, and Countess of Wiltshire by her second marriage to Henry Stafford, 1st Earl of Wiltshire.
Anne Woodville, Viscountess Bourchier was an English noblewoman. She was a younger sister of Queen Consort Elizabeth Woodville to whom she served as a lady-in-waiting. Anne was married twice; first to William Bourchier, Viscount Bourchier, and secondly to George Grey, 2nd Earl of Kent. Anne was the grandmother of the disinherited adulteress Anne Bourchier, 7th Baroness Bourchier, and an ancestress of Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex.
Sir Robert Sheffield was an English lawyer and Member of Parliament. He was Speaker of the House of Commons between 1512–1513.
Katherine Neville, Baroness Hastings, was a noblewoman and a member of the powerful Neville family of northern England. She was one of the six daughters of Richard Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury, and the sister of military commander Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, known to history as Warwick the Kingmaker.
Margaret Grey was a Cambro-Norman noblewoman, the daughter of Reginald Grey, 3rd Baron Grey de Ruthyn, a powerful Welsh Marcher Lord, who was the implacable enemy of Owain Glyndŵr.
Margaret Wotton, Marchioness of Dorset was the second wife of Thomas Grey, 2nd Marquess of Dorset, and the mother of his children, including Henry Grey, 1st Duke of Suffolk, with whom she engaged in many quarrels during his minority over money and his allowance. Her lack of generosity to Henry shocked her peers as unmotherly, and inappropriate behaviour toward a high-ranking nobleman, relative of King Henry VIII of England. In 1534, she was compelled to answer to the charges that she was an "unnatural mother".
Elizabeth Grey, Countess of Kildare, was an English noblewoman, the second wife of Gerald FitzGerald, 9th Earl of Kildare. Her father was Thomas Grey, 1st Marquess of Dorset.
Anne Hastings, Countess of Shrewsbury was an English noblewoman who served as a lady-in-waiting to Queen consort Catherine of Aragon, the first wife of King Henry VIII of England. Anne was the first wife of George Talbot, 4th Earl of Shrewsbury, by whom she had 11 children. Her maternal half-sister was Cecily Bonville, Baroness Harington and Bonville, the wealthiest heiress in late 15th-century England, making Anne the half-great-great-aunt of Jane Grey.
Robert Willoughby, 2nd Baron Willoughby de Broke and de jure 10th Baron Latimer, was an English nobleman and soldier.
Henry Barley or Barlee, of Albury, Hertfordshire, was a Member of Parliament during the Tudor period.
Lady Eleanor Grey, was an English noblewoman, and the first wife of Sir John Arundell of Lanherne in Cornwall, "the most important man in the county", being Receiver-General of the Duchy of Cornwall. Their monumental brass in the church at St Columb Major in Cornwall was described by E. H. W. Dunkin (1882) as "perhaps the most elaborate and interesting brass to be found in Cornwall." Her father was Thomas Grey, 1st Marquess of Dorset. Lady Eleanor was an ancestor of the later Barons Arundell of Wardour.
Knightstone is an historic manor in the parish of Ottery St Mary in Devon. The surviving mediaeval and Tudor grade I listed manor house is situated one mile south-east of St Mary's Church, Ottery St Mary. It was the seat of the Bittlesgate family, the heiress of which Joan Bittlesgate, daughter of Thomas Bittlesgate by his wife Joan Beauchamp, was the wife of Richard Woodville, grandfather of Elizabeth Woodville (c.1437-1492) Queen consort of England as the spouse of King Edward IV. In 1381 the Bittlesgate family obtained a licence from the Bishop of Exeter to build and operate a private chapel at their home, but no trace of the structure survives. The house has been much altered since the time of the Bittlesgate family. One Tudor-era fireplace survives in a bedroom.
Thomas Grey, 1st Marquess of Dorset, is depicted in: