Sir Henry Parker, KB, MP

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Henry Parker, KB, MP

Birthplace: Blickling, Norfolk, England
Death: Died in Hornby, Lancashire, England
Immediate Family:

Son of Henry Parker, 10th Baron Morley, 11th Baron Marshal and Alice (Anne) St. John
Husband of Grace Parker (Newport) and Elizabeth Wodehouse
Father of Baron Henry Parker, 2nd of Morley; Thomas Parker; Charles Parker, , Bishop of Man; William Parker, Gent; Ann Amy Shelton and 3 others
Brother of Margaret Shelton and Lady Jane Parker, Viscountess Rochford
Half brother of Alice Barrington

Managed by: Sierra Taylor Maciorowski
Last Updated:

About Sir Henry Parker, KB, MP

Family and Education

  • Born by 1514, son of Henry Parker, 10th Lord Morley by Alice, daughter of Sir John St. John of Bletsoe, Bedfordshire.
  • Educ. ?L. Inn, adm. 1516.
  • Married (1) 18 May 1523, Grace, daughter and heir of John Newport of Furneux Pelham, at least 2 sons, 1 daughter,
  • Married (2) by 1549, Elizabeth, daughter and heir of Sir Philip Calthrope of Erwarton, Suffolk, at least 1 son.
  • d.v.p. KB 31 May 1533.[3]

Offices Held

  • Commissioner tenths of spiritualities, Hertfordshire 1535,
  • Commissioner of musters 1539,
  • Commissioner of loan 1544,
  • Commissioner of chantries, Essex and Hertfordshire 1548
  • Commissioner of relief, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and household of Princess Elizabeth 1550;
  • other commissions 1538-51;
  • sheriff, Essex and Hertfordshire 1536-7;
  • Justice of the Peace Hertfordshire 1537-death;
  • custos rot. c.1547.[4]


Sir Henry Parker’s father was a prominent courtier, an accomplished translator and author, and a close friend of Cromwell. One of his daughters married George Boleyn, Viscount Rochford, and Parker himself was to be connected, through his second marriage, with the Boleyn family.

The beginnings of Parker’s career are obscure. The man of that name who was page of the chamber and gentleman usher from 1514 was probably a namesake, perhaps Henry Parker of Berden, Essex.[5]

By his marriage to Grace Newport, who was only eight in 1523, Parker acquired the manors of Furneux Pelham and Stapleford, and in 1536 he procured a private Act (28 Hen. VIII c.20) settling his two Norfolk manors on himself and his wife, in lieu of the jointure that he had covenanted to make her on marriage. In 1541 the under sheriff of Essex and Hertfordshire was sued for abducting a 14 year-old ward, Jane Barenton, who had been contracted in marriage to the younger John Newport, presumably Parker’s brother-in-law. Parker was apparently a party to the abduction, for his servants escorted the girl in her flight from her guardian and helped her to elude him in London.[6]

Parker was knighted at Anne Boleyn’s coronation and served regularly on Hertfordshire commissions from 1535. It is possible that he sat in the short Parliament of 1536, for which the Hertfordshire returns have not survived; it was that Parliament which passed the Act relating to the settlement on Grace Parker, although such an uncontroversial measure hardly required Parker’s presence in the Commons as well as his father’s in the Lords. His election for Hertfordshire in 1539 is to be explained by his father’s closeness to Cromwell and his own leading position in his county. In two letters to Cromwell (probably of 1536) Parker reported his imprisonment of two parsons who had disobeyed the royal injunctions against superstitious holy days, and begged Cromwell to help his chaplain, whom the bishop of London’s surveyor was suing for no good reason.

Parker explained that he knew ‘the love and favour which ... your lordship always hath borne to the word of God and to all them which endeavour to set forth the King’s most godly and gracious injunctions’ and interpreted the action against his chaplain as an attack by the conservative Bishop Stokesley on himself.

He attended at court on ceremonial occasions, such as the christening of Prince Edward and the reception of Anne of Cleves. He was also called on for military service, his name appearing in lists of Hertfordshire gentlemen to serve against the northern rebels in 1536, and eight years later he was with the rearguard of the army in France. In April 1536 he had a grant from the crown of the dissolved priory of Latton, Essex, which he sold, with other land, five years later. He was assessed in Hertfordshire for the subsidy, his lands there being valued at £100 a year in 1546, which made him one of the county’s ten or 12 richest men.[7]

Parker retained interests in Norfolk which involved him in several Star Chamber cases. One of these concerned rights of common at Hingham, where he wished to pasture 500 sheep. His alleged enclosure of Hingham common was one of the grievances of the Norfolk peasantry at the time of in his unsuccessful attempt to put down the rebellion in August.[8]

Under Edward VI Parker was appointed to most of the important commissions for Hertfordshire. He was not immediately chosen knight of the shire in 1547 but was elected on 24 Oct., less than a fortnight before the Parliament met, to fill the vacancy left by the death of Sir Anthony Denny on the previous 10 Sept. A bill ‘for increase of trees and woods’ was committed to him on 5 Nov. 1549, after its first reading.

His parliamentary career ended before the following and last session of this Parliament began, for he died on 6 Jan. 1552. The Privy Council sent instructions on 19 Jan. following for a second by-election in Hertfordshire and recommended Sir Ralph Sadler as the fittest person; it was nevertheless John Cock II who was elected.

Parker died during the lifetime of his father. The inquisition post mortem taken in Norfolk thus mentioned only the two manors settled on Parker and his first wife to provide her jointure and valued at £50 a year; the larger of these, Hingham, had been re-settled for the benefit of Parker’s second wife, Elizabeth, who later married Sir William Woodhouse and Dru Drury†.

Parker’s heir was his eldest son Henry, aged 20 years and 11 months at his father’s death; he did not share his father’s religious views, but fled to the Continent in Elizabeth’s reign and became one of the leading English Catholic exiles there. No will of Parker’s has been found.[9]

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: D. F. Coros


  • 1. E159/319, brev. ret. Mich. r. [1-2].
  • 2. Did not serve for the full duration of the Parliament.
  • 3. Date of birth estimated from first commission. CP; LP Hen. VIII, vi.
  • 4. LP Hen. VIII, viii, xii-xiv, xvi, xviii; CPR, 1547-8, pp. 76, 84; 1548-9, p. 135; 1550-3, p. 141; 1553, pp. 352, 354, 356, 363; C66/801; 193/12/1.
  • 5. DNB (Parker, Henry); LP Hen. VIII, v, xiii, xvi; PCC 24 Bucke.
  • 6. St. Ch. 2/24/107; C142/42/96.
  • 7. LP Hen. VIII, viii, x-xii, xiv, xvi, xviii, xix, SP1/106, f. 229; E179/121/177.
  • 8. St.Ch.2/10/113-18, 338, 338a, 27/55, 29/140; 3/6/30; S. T. Bindoff, Ket’s Rebellion (Hist. Assoc. gen. ser. xii), 9; Holinshed, Chron. iii. 971.
  • 9. C219/19/39, 44; CJ, i. 11; C142/96/34(2).


  • 'Sir Henry Parker, Master of Morley1
  • 'M, #86892, d. 6 January 1552
  • Father Henry Parker, 10th Lord Morley1 b. c 1486, d. 27 Nov 1556
  • Mother Alice (Anne) St. John1 b. c 1484
  • ' Sir Henry Parker, Master of Morley married Grace Newport, daughter of John Newport and Mary Daniel, on 18 May 1523.1 Sir Henry Parker, Master of Morley married Elizabeth Calthorpe, daughter of Sir Philip Calthorpe and Jane Boleyn, before 1549.2,1 Sir Henry Parker, Master of Morley died on 6 January 1552; d.v.p.1
  • 'Family 1 Grace Newport b. c 1515, d. b 1549
  • Children
    • Margaret Parker+3 b. c 1524
    • Sir Henry Parker, 11th Lord Marley4 b. 1531, d. 22 Oct 1577
  • 'Family 2 Elizabeth Calthorpe b. c 1521, d. 26 May 1578
  • Citations
  • 1.[S11568] The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain, and the United Kingdom, by George Edward Cokayne, Vol. IX, p. 224-5.
  • 2.[S61] Unknown author, Family Group Sheets, SLC Archives.
  • 3.[S11581] Burke's Dormant & Extinct Peerages, p. 417*.
  • 4.[S11568] The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain, and the United Kingdom, by George Edward Cokayne, Vol. IX, p. 225-6.
  • From:
  • _________________________
  • 'Henry PARKER (Sir)
  • 'Born: ABT 1513
  • 'Died: 9 Jan 1551/2 / 3 Dec 1553, V.P.
  • Notes: See his Biography.
  • Father: Henry PARKER (1º B. Morley)
  • Mother: Alice St. JOHN (B. Morley)
  • 'Married 1: Grace NEWPORT (b. 1515 - d. ABT 1549) (dau. of John Newport of Furneux Pelham and Mary Daniel) 18 May 1523
  • Children:
    • 1. Henry PARKER (2º B. Morley)
    • 2. Charles PARKER (Bishop of Man)
    • 3. Edmund PARKER
    • 4. Mary PARKER
    • 5. Margaret PARKER
    • 6. Amy PARKER
  • 'Married 2: Elizabeth CALTHORPE BEF 1549
  • Children:
    • 7. Phillip PARKER (Sir)
  • From: PARKER (Sir)1
  • ______________________________
  • (His father is listed in other references as being the 10th Lord Morley and his son the 11th, skipping over this Henry)

From Darryl Lundy's Peerage page on Henry Parker:

Henry Parker, 10th Lord Morley

  • M, #341956,
  • b. 1476,
  • d. 3 December 1553
  • Last Edited=13 Mar 2009

Henry Parker, 10th Lord Morley was born in 1476.

He married Grace Newport. He died on 3 December 1553.

He gained the title of 10th Lord Morley.

Child of Henry Parker, 10th Lord Morley and Grace Newport

  • 1. Henry Parker, 11th Lord Morley+ b. c 1532
  • From:
  • _____________________
  • Henry [Parker], 10th Baron Morley and de jure 11th Baron Marshal
  • born c. 1486
  • mar. bef. 1505 Alice St John (bur. 23 Nov 1553 at Great Hallingbury, co. Essex), dau. of Sir John St John, of Bletsoe, co. Bedford (by his wife Alice Bradshaigh, dau. of Thomas Bradshaigh, of Haigh, co. Lancaster), 1st son and heir of Sir Oliver St John, of Penmark, co. Glamorgan, by his wife Margaret Beauchamp, de jure suo jure Baroness Beauchamp of Bletsoe (mar. (2) John [Beaufort], 1st Duke of Somerset, and was grandmother of King Henry VII), sister and hrss. of John [Beauchamp], 4th Baron Beauchamp of Bletsoe, and only dau. of John [Beauchamp], 3rd Baron Beauchamp, by his wife Edith Stourton, dau. of Sir John Stourton
  • children
    • '1. Hon Sir Henry Parker, Page of the Chamber to King Henry VIII 1516, created a Knight of the Bath at the Coronation of Queen Anne Boleyn 1533 (dvp. 6 Jan 1551/2), mar. (1) 18 May 1523 Grace Newport, dau. and hrss. of John Newport, of Pelham Furneux, and had issue:
      • 1a. Henry Parker, later 11th Baron Morley
      • 2a. Father Charles Parker, titular Bishop of Man (b. 28 Jan 1537)
      • 3a. Edmund Parker
      • 1a. Mary Parker (b. c. 1539; bur. 7 Nov 1566)
      • 2a. Margaret Parker
      • 3a. Amy Parker (bur. 8 Dec 1571 at Little Glenham), mar. Sir Thomas Glenham, son of Christopher Glenham by his wife Margery Wentworth, dau. of Sir Richard Wentworth, of Nettlestead, co. Suffolk, and had issue
    • 'Hon Sir Henry Parker mar. (2) in or bef. 1549 Elizabeth Calthorpe (b. c. 1521; mar. (2) c 11 Nov 1552 Sir William Woodhouse, of Hickling, co. Norfolk (d. 22 Nov 1563), and (3) Dru Drury, of Norwich; d. 26 May 1578), dau. and hrss. of Sir Philip Calthorpe, of Erwarton, co. Suffolk, and had issue:
      • 2a. Sir Philip Parker, of Erwarton, co. Suffolk, Sheriff of Suffolk 1578, mar. Catherine Goodwin, dau. of Sir John Goodwin, of Winchendon, co. Buckingham, and had issue
    • 2. Hon Francis Parker
    • 1. Hon Jane Parker, a Lady of the Bedchamber to Queen Anne Boleyn, Queen Jane Seymour, Queen Anne of Cleves and Queen Margaret Howard, charged with being procuress for Queen Margaret and attainted by Act of Parliament 11 Feb 1541/2 (b. c. 1510; d. by execution 13 Feb 1541/2), mar. c. 1526 Hon George Boleyn, styled Viscount Rochford, Cupbearer to the King 1526. Gentleman of the Privy Chamber 1527, Esquire of the Body 1528, Master of the Buckhounds 1528, knighted 1529, on embassies to France 1529, 1530, 1533 and 1534, cr. Baron Rochford c. 1530, Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports 1534-36, envoy to Calais 1535, a Commissioner to try Sir Thomas More 1535, Privy Councillor (sic?), arrested 2 may and attainted 15 May 1536 (dsp. by execution 17 May 1536), brother of Queen Anne Boleyn, only son of Thomas [Boleyn], 1st Earl of Wiltshire and 1st Earl of Ormonde, by his wife Lady Elizabeth Howard, 1st dau. of Thomas [Howard], 2nd Duke of Norfolk, by his first wife Elizabeth Bourchier, widow of Sir Humphrey Bourchier and dau. and hrss. of Sir Frederick Tilney, of Ashwellthorpe, co. Norfolk
    • 2. Hon Margaret Parker (d. 15 Nov 1558), mar. Sir John Shelton, of Shelton, co. Norfolk (b. c. 1509; d. 15 Nov 1558), 1st son and heir of Sir John Shelton, of Shelton, co. Norfolk, by his wife Anne Boleyn, dau. of Sir William Boleyn, of Blickling, co. Norfolk, and had issue
    • 3. Hon Elizabeth Parker
  • died 27 Nov 1556 (bur. at Great Hallingbury, co. Essex)
  • suc. by grandson
  • From:
  • (The parents for Henry Parker, 10th Baron Morley's listed wife Alice St. John are listed in other sources as her grandparents, Alice Bradshaigh & John St. John would be a little old to be her parents)
  • _______________________

Sir Henry Parker had 6 children with heis first wife Grace Newport - Henry, Charles, Edmund, Mary, Margaret and Amy. Charles Parker became a bishop of Manchester.

Sir Henry parker became Lord Morley after his grandfather ( ) died in 1555.

His grandson, William Parker, Lord Monte and Morley, was the nobleman to whom the remarkable letter was addressed, which led to the discovery of the Gunpowder plot.

view all 12

Sir Henry Parker, KB, MP's Timeline

Blickling, Norfolk, England
Age 9
Bletsoe, Bedford, England
Age 11
Hornby Castle, Lancashire, England
Age 20
Gressingham, Lancashire, England
Age 20
Age 22
Gressingham, Lancashire, England
Age 24
Hornby Castle, Lancashire, England
Age 26
Hornby Castle, Lancashire, England
Age 35
Morley, Norfolk, England