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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Rev. Richard Edwards, playwright, composer, poet, and son of Henry VIII??? #52ancestors

AKA Prince Richard Tudor?... 

Imagine my surprise while searching my Edwards line to find Henry the 8th as an ancestor. I already knew he was my 16th great uncle as he was the husband of Lady Jane Seymour who was the sister of my ancestor Sir Edward Seymour, but then today I came across the profile of my other ancestor Reverend Richard Edwards who may be the illegitimate son of Henry VIII and his mistress Agnes Blewitt Edwards.....   

There is some debate as to whether he was the son of Henry VIII or Agnes' husband William Edwards apparently, but... 

Rev. Richard Edwards is my 13th great grandfather.                          
You 
   →  Mom 
your mother →  Pvt. Garnett Hancock, WWII Veteran 
her father →  Burrell H Hancock 
his father →  Samuel Austin Hancock 
his father → Elizabeth Edwards Hancock 
his mother →  Brice Edwards 
her father →  Ambrose Edwards, Jr. 
his father →  Ambrose Edwards, the Immigrant 
his father → THOMAS N. Edwards, Sr. 
his father →  Robert H. Edwards 
his father →  Thomas "Nathaniel" Edwards, of Cardiff & NY 
his father → William Edwards, of Llangyfelach & Jamestown 
his father →  Joshua Edwards, of Cardiff 
his father →  Rev. Richard Edwards 
his father → Rev. Richard Edwardes 
his father            


and so this would make Henry VIII Tudor my 14th great grandfather...   

Rev. Richard Edwardes (1523 - 1566) was an English poet and playwright; he was made a Gentleman of the Chapel Royal, and was master of the singing boys. He was known for his comedies and interludes, but was also rumoured to be an illegitimate son of Henry VIII
He was born October 1523 in North Petherton, Somerset, England and died October 31, 1567, in Edwards Hall, Glamorgan, Near Cardiff, South Wales.  
English composer and poet, Richard became Master of the Children of the Chapel Royal in 1561 and wrote two plays for them. His five surviving songs, of which the most famous is "In Going to my Naked Bed", show the influence of the Franco-Flemish style on English music before the arrival of the Italian madrigal. Three keyboard arrangements of 3 part-songs (only one assigned to him, but the other two assumed to be his from his authorship of the words) survive in MS.
Richard Edwards was educated at Oxford, receiving both a Bachelor's and a Master's degree. He considered the law as a career, entering Lincoln's Inn Field, but never took up the practice. Instead he became master of the children at the Chapel Royal, where he created musical dramas that the children's choir could perform. The composition, 'Palamon and Arcite' was written for the Queen, and was performed at Oxford. The Queen was impressed with the piece, and intended to bestow a gift on Edwards, but he died soon after the performance.
Little more is known of Edwards' life. Edwards' importance as a playwright is that he instigated the basing of the English tragedy on the Latin classical model. His plays were classical in subject, but were set in a contemporary world. The only play of his that is still in existence is 'Damon and Pithias' (1571).
The story says Henry VIII is known to have had 6 wives and several mistresses during his marriage to Catherine of Aragon. One mistress is said to been Agnes Blewitt. King Henry the VIII is said to have fathered a son with her, whom was born after her marriage to William Edwards. She and William named the son Richard Edwards. Agnes and William Edwards lived adjacent to the King's Hunting lodge in Somerset, England. The Edwards had other children with birth and baptism records stating William and Agnes as the parents, but there is no records for Richard.
Richard was afforded many favorable opportunities as a young man, including a post at Christ Church College in Oxford. Finally, he was included in the inner circle of the royal family, both during the lifetime and after the death of Henry VIII. This was the pattern of favoritism shown other known bastard children of Henry VIII. A book on the subject was written in 1992 by David Dean Edwards called 'Edward's Legacy'.      



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