About Eleanor Winter
- 'The Paston family in the fifteenth century: endings By Colin Richmond
- Pg. 104
- From time to time Margaret reported the inconsequential items as well as the pressing, the violence done at King's Lynn by 'right a mysgovernyd yong man' named Bosville, for instance, and (with some relish) 'the birth of John Heydon's wife's illegitimate child and John Heydon's violent reaction, yet she does not do so often: words were too precious to be wasted.67 They were presumably not wasted in retailing John Heydon's cockoldry, although it occurred in 1444 before there had been the great falling-out between Heydon and Paston. The relish came from the fact that John Heydon's wife was Eleanor Winter, daughter of Edmund Winter, and from the timing: the birth coincided with Judge William's recovery of East Beckham in the month before his death, a major, if temporary triumph over Edmund Winter.68 One wonders what Edmund Winter thought. Did he disown his daughter? To Margaret her sister, Edmund in his will of 1448 left a book about Richard the Lionheart 'et aliis militibus', but is was to John Heydon not Eleanor that he left his book of chronicles: she is not mentioned.69 What happened to Eleanor, who had four years before her disgrace given birth to the future Sir Henry Heydon? Did she enter a nunnery, as Alice, the wife of Thomas Tuddenham, who had also cuckolded her husband, had been abliged to?70 Margaret Paston told John in 1444 she had heard that not only had John Heydon said 'yyf sche come in hesse presence to make here exkewce that he xuld kyt of here nose to makyn here to be know wat sche is', but also that he would not 'be intretit to have here ayen in to wysse'.71
- The oddity is that we hear so little scandal, that there is so little tittle-tattle. It is political not sexual scandal that got John Heyson and Thomas Tuddenham into difficulties, their public not their private lives. ....