Life and Letters of Sir Thomas Wyatt

By Kenneth Muir | Go to book overview
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VII
Lauda Finem1

On 12 June 1541 Wyatt made his will. Imprisonment on a capital charge must have made him hasten to set his house in order. As we have seen, he was apparently compelled to take back his wife and he therefore sought to make provision both for Elizabeth Darrell and for his illegitimate son by her, Francis Darrell, alias Wyatt. He bequeathed lands in Dorset and Somerset to her, with remainder to her son.2

Early in November, Queen Katherine Howard, who had pleaded for Wyatt's release a few months before, was accused of fornication and adultery. She was executed on 13 February 1542 and Wyatt was given a number of offices which had belonged to her paramour, Thomas Culpeper.3 In March Wyatt made another exchange of property with the King.4 He gave up estates and property in over thirty places in Kent, receiving in return estates and premises in Kent, Dorset, and Somerset. One messuage at Cranebroke had belonged to Cromwell. The numerous estates belonging to Montagu Priory and various manors nearby account for Leland's reference to Montacute:5

The ancient town we now call Montacute
Choose Wyatt as its lord and patron.

____________________
L.T.W.--15
1
See p. 9 above.
2
I have not been able to trace a copy of the will. After Wyatt's death, Elizabeth Darrell received a pardon for having obtained, without a licence, lands held of the King in capite. Sir Thomas Wyatt the younger alienated Tarrant to her in 1544: his father had received this in March 1542.
3
Letters and Papers, XVII, No. 71.
4
Letters and Papers, XVII, No. 220. Nott lists the properties in full (p. 326) but he dates the deed of exchange 20 November 33 Henry VIII (i.e. 1542). It is possible that the original deed was dated 20 November 1541 but not ratified until the following March.
5
See below, p. 265.

-211-

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