William Hastings (1431 - 1483) MP

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Birthplace: Frisby and Kirby, Leicestershire, England
Death: Died in London
Cause of death: Executed
Occupation: 1st Baron Hastings, Lord Chamberlain and Master of the Mint
Managed by: Rulene Ames Walk
Last Updated:

About William Hastings

William Hastings, 1st Baron Hastings (c. 1431 – 13 June 1483) became one of the great powers of the English realm during the reign of Edward IV of England.

Hastings' father was Sir Leonard Hastings, a member of the English gentry who moved his seat to Leicestershire from Yorkshire where the family had long been established. His mother was Alice Camoys, daughter of the 1st Baron Camoys, by his second wife Lady Elizabeth Mortimer, widow of Henry "Hotspur" Percy and daughter of Edmund Mortimer, 3rd Earl of March, and Philippa of Clarence, daughter of Lionel of Antwerp, second son of Edward III.

Hastings succeeded his father in service to the House of York and through this service became close to his distant cousin the future Edward IV, whom he was to serve loyally all his life. He fought with Edward at the Battle of Mortimer's Cross and was present at the proclamation of Edward as king in London on 4 March 1461 and then when the new king secured his crown at the Battle of Towton shortly thereafter. With the establishment of the Yorkist regime, Hastings became one of the key figures in the realm, most importantly as Lord Chamberlain, an office he held for the duration of the reign and which made him one of the most important means of access to the king. He was also created Baron Hastings, a title reinforced by grants of land and office, primarily in Leicestershire and Northamptonshire. His importance in these years is recorded in a number of sources and was recognized by the greatest peer in the realm, Warwick the Kingmaker, who gave Hastings his widowed sister Katherine Neville in marriage. Katherine's first husband William Bonville, 6th Baron of Harington had been killed at the Battle of Wakefield on 31 December 1460, leaving her with a six-months old daughter, Cecily Bonville, who succeeded to the Bonville titles and estates. Hastings and Katharine had three surviving sons, including Edward Hastings, 2nd Baron Hastings who married Margaret Hungerford, heiress, and a daughter Anne, who married George Talbot, 4th Earl of Shrewsbury (1468-1538).

Despite this matrimonial relationship with the Nevilles, when Warwick drove Edward IV into exile in 1470, Hastings went with Edward and accompanied the king back the following spring. Hastings raised troops for Edward in the English Midlands and served as one of the captains of the Yorkist forces at both Barnet and Tewkesbury. His service, loyalty and ability, along with the fall of his Neville in-laws, meant that Hastings was an even more important figure during the second half of Edward IV's reign. He continued to serve as chamberlain but was also appointed to be lieutenant of Calais, which made him an important player in foreign affairs, and he was given authority over an increasingly large section of the English Midlands.

On the death of Edward IV on 9 April 1483, Hastings allied himself with Richard duke of Gloucester (after June 26, 1483, Richard III, King of England) in opposition to Edward IV's wife Elizabeth Woodville and her family. Hastings and Richard took control of the minority government of Edward V, however, when it became apparent that Hastings would not have the same control in the Protector's government as he had in Edward's, Hastings joined with the Woodvilles and others to rebel against the Protector's government. After hearing of the threat on his life, Richard of Gloucester had Hastings seized while the two of them and other political leaders were meeting at the Tower of London and had Hastings beheaded immediately in the courtyard: the first recorded execution at the Tower of London. The extra-juridical nature of this action was reflected in the fact that Hastings' wife and sons were allowed to inherit his lands and properties and Hastings himself was buried in St George's Chapel, Windsor, next to Edward IV.

[edit] In Literatue

He is portrayed in Shakespeare's play, Richard III.

[edit] Further reading

Seward, Desmond. A Brief History of the Wars of the Roses (Robinson, 1995)

Ross, Charles. Edward IV (Berkeley, 1974) [1]

Carpenter, Christine. The Wars of the Roses (Cambridge, 1997) [2]

Horrox, Rosemary. Richard III : a study of service (Cambridge, 1989) [3]

Dunham, William Huse. Lord Hastings' indentured retainers, 1461-1483 (New Haven, 1955) [4]

Peerage of England

Preceded by

new creation Baron Hastings

1461-1483 Succeeded by

Edward Hastings

Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Hastings,_1st_Baron_Hastings"

Categories: 1430s births | 1483 deaths | Barons in the Peerage of England | People of the Wars of the Roses | Executed politicians | People executed under the Yorkists | Executions at the Tower of London | Characters depicted in Shakespeare's plays

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William Hastings, 1st Baron Hastings

William Hastings, 1st Baron Hastings of Hungerford (c. 1431 – June 1483) became one of the great powers of the English realm during the reign of Edward IV of England, but was executed after being accused of conspiracy against his one-time companion, Richard III.

Hastings' father was Sir Leonard Hastings, who owned a modest estate in Leicestershire and Gloucestershire, where the family had long been established. His mother was Alice Camoys, daughter of Elizabeth Mortimer and the 1st Baron Camoys. Elizabeth Mortimer was in turn daughter of Edmund Mortimer, 3rd Earl of March, and Philippa of Clarence, daughter of Lionel of Antwerp, a son of Edward III. Elizabeth Mortimer had also married Henry "Hotspur" Percy. Thus Hastings was second cousin to Edward IV and to the Earl of Northumberland.

As a young man Hastings served in the household of his cousin, Richard, Duke of York. There he apparently became close to the duke's son Edward, who he was to loyally serve all his life. He fought with Edward at the Battle of Mortimer's Cross and followed him to London. After Edward was proclaimed king, Hastings was appointed Lord Chamberlain (1461). He again fought with Edward at the Battle of Towton which secured Edward's crown. Shortly after the coronation he was created Baron Hastings, was named to a number of royal offices, and received a very large grant from the estates forfeited by Lancastrian peers. These estates were concentrated in the English Midlands.

Hastings married Katharine Neville, sister of Warwick the Kingmaker. They had a daughter, Anne, who married George Talbot, 4th Earl of Shrewsbury (1468-1538); they had eleven children, through whom Hastings has very many descendants. Hastings' own sister Elizabeth (d. 1508) married the Welsh Yorkist soldier, diplomat and courtier Sir John Donne (d. 1503), who managed to ride out the fall of both Hastings and the Yorkist cause.

Hastings followed Edward IV during Edward's exile in 1470, and returned with him in 1471. He raised a good portion of the Yorkist troops that fought at Barnet and Tewkesbury. Hastings was one of the commanders at both of those battles.

With Edward back on the throne, Hastings resumed his place as Chamberlain and his influential place at Court. When Edward died in 1483, he expected to continue on during the minority of Edward's son Edward V. However he was arrested on charges of treason by Edward's brother Richard and executed shortly afterwards, the first recorded execution at the Tower of London.

Considerable controversy surrounds the circumstances of Hastings' death. Most historians say that he was executed at most a few hours after his arrest, on June 13, 1483, while others believe he was held for a week, and possibly even had a trial of some sort. There is also disagreement regarding the truth of the accusations against him. Everyone agrees that he opposed, or would have opposed, any efforts to displace Edward V. It is less clear whether Hastings had in fact been conspiring in some way to oppose Richard, or, if he was, whether his conduct should be construed as treason.

He is buried in St George's Chapel, Windsor, next to his patron Edward IV, his sister lady Donne and her husband, Sir John.

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WILLIAM, LORD HASTINGS, was the son of Leonard Hastings, esquire of Richard, Duke of York.

He was a favourite of Edward IV, from whom he received considerable grants of land, besides holding the offices of Master of the Mint, Captain of Calais, and Lord Chamberlain.

Though he has supported Richard [later Richard III] against the Woodvilles, he was suddenly seized by the Protector's orders while at the council-table, and hurried of to execution on a charge of conspiracy (June, 1483). The reason of this sudden execution seems to have been due to the fact that he was unwilling to second Richard's nefarious schemes for obtaining the throne [the murder of Edward V and his brother, "the princes in the Tower"].

Hastings married Katherine Neville, sister of the Earl of Warwick.

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William HASTINGS (1º B. Ashby Zouche)

Born: 1429/31, Leicestershire, England

Died: 13/16 Jun 1483, Tower of London, England

Notes: Knight of the Garter. Beheaded.

Father: Leonard HASTINGS

Mother: Alice CAMOYS

Married 1: Elizabeth WALDEN

Married 2: Catherine NEVILLE (B. Ashby-Zouche) 6 Feb 1461, Salisbury, Wiltshire, England

Children:

1. Ralph HASTINGS (b. ABT 1463)

2. Elizabeth HASTINGS

3. Edward HASTINGS (2º B. Asby-Zouche)

4. Richard HASTINGS (b. ABT 1468)

5. William HASTINGS

6. Anne HASTINGS (C. Shrewsbury)

7. George HASTINGS (b. ABT 1472)

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http://www.thepeerage.com/p1452.htm#i14516

Sir William Hastings, 1st Lord Hastings

M, #14516, d. circa 1483

Last Edited=28 Apr 2008

    Sir William Hastings, 1st Lord Hastings married Katherine Neville, daughter of Sir Richard de Neville, 5th Earl of Salisbury and Alice Montagu, Countess of Salisbury, before 6 February 1461/62.1 He died circa 1483 at Tower of London, The City, London, England, beheaded.
    Sir William Hastings, 1st Lord Hastings gained the title of 1st Lord Hastings, of Hastings. He held the office of Lord Chamberlain.

Child of Sir William Hastings, 1st Lord Hastings and Katherine Neville

Anne Hastings+

Child of Sir William Hastings, 1st Lord Hastings

Edward Hastings, 2nd Baron Hastings+ b. 26 Nov 1466, d. 8 Nov 15062

Citations

[S8] Charles Mosley, editor, Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, 106th edition, 2 volumes (Crans, Switzerland: Burke's Peerage (Genealogical Books) Ltd, 1999), volume 1, page 17. Hereinafter cited as Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, 106th edition.

[S6] G.E. Cokayne; with Vicary Gibbs, H.A. Doubleday, Geoffrey H. White, Duncan Warrand and Lord Howard de Walden, editors, The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, Extant, Extinct or Dormant, new ed., 13 volumes in 14 (1910-1959; reprint in 6 volumes, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 2000), volume II, page 243. Hereinafter cited as The Complete Peerage.

-------------------- Sir William Hastinges, 1st Lord Hastings held the office of Sheriff of Warwickshire from 1455 to 1456.

He held the office of Sheriff of Leicestershire from 1455 to 1456.

He fought in the Battle of Towton on 29 March 1461, as a Yorkist.

He was invested as a Knight circa 30 March 1461.

He was Master and Worker of the King's Mints in 1461.

He held the office of Chamberlain of the North Wales in 1461.

He held the office of Receiver-General of the Duchy of Cornwall in 1461.

He was created 1st Lord Hastings, of Hastings [England by writ] on 26 July 1461, although it is not clear if this creation was by writ, or by patent.

He held the office of Constable of Donington Castle.

He held the office of Chief Justice and Chamberlain of Merionethshire in 1462.

He held the office of Constable of Harlech Castle in 1462.1 He held the office of Steward Honour of Leicester.

He held the office of Constable of Higham Ferrers Castle.

He and Sir Ralph Hastinges were Joint Constable of Rockingham and Northampton Castles in 1462.

He was invested as a Knight, Order of the Garter (K.G.) in March 1461/62.

In 1464 he was granted the castle and honour of Huntingdon.

He was an envoy to negotiate peaces with Burgundy and Brittany in 1466.

He held the office of Lieutenant-General of Calais in 1471.

He held the office of Chamberlain Receipt of the Exchequer in 1471.

He fought in the Battle of Barnet on 14 April 1471.

He was charged with treason, and his estates confiscated (but he was not attainted).

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William Hastings, 1st Baron Hastings's Timeline

1431
1431
Frisby and Kirby, Leicestershire, England
1431
Donington Castle-Kirby, Leicester, England, Great Britain
1451
1451
Age 20
York Castle, Yorkshire, England, United Kingdom
1462
1462
Age 31
1463
1463
Age 32
Kirby, Leicester, England
1464
1464
Age 33
Of, Kirby, Leicestershire, England
1464
Age 33
Of, Kirby, Leicestershire, England
1466
November 26, 1466
Age 35
Kirby Castle, Leicestershire, England
1470
1470
Age 39
Donington Castle, Kirby, Leicestershire, England
1471
1471
Age 40
Frisby and Kirby, Leicestershire, United Kingdom