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Margaret of Richmond Beaufort, Countess of Richmond and Countess of Derby[1]

Female 1443 - 1509  (66 years)

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  • Name Margaret of Richmond Beaufort 
    Suffix Countess of Richmond and Countess of Derby 
    Born 31 May 1443  Bletsoe Castle, Bedfordshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Female 
    Died 29 Jun 1509  Abbot's House, Cheyney Gates, Westminster, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried Westminster Abbey, London, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Founder of Christ's and St.John's Colleges, Cambridge.

      Beaufort, Margaret, countess of Richmond and Derby, British And Irish Hist
      ory, Biographies

      Related Category: British And Irish History, Biographies

      Beaufort, Margaret, countess of Richmond and Derby[bO´furt, dAr´bE] Pronun ciation Key, 1443 to1509, English noblewoman, mother of Henry VII. She w as the daughter and heiress of John, 1st duke of Somerset, and great-grand daughter of John of Gaunt, duke of Lancaster. She was married three time s: to Edmund Tudor, earl of Richmond, who was Henry's father; to Henry Sta fford; and to Thomas, Lord Stanley, afterward earl of Derby. Renowned f or her philanthropy, she endowed professorships of divinity at Oxford a nd Cambridge and with the help of her confessor, John Fisher, founded Chri st's College and St. John's College, Cambridge. She was the patron of ma ny religious houses and of William Caxton and Wynkyn de Worde.

      The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia

      Margaret Beaufort
      Born: 31st May 1443 at Bletsoe, Bedfords
      Countess of Richmond
      Countess of Derby
      Died: 29th June 1509
      The Countess of Richmond & Derby, commonly called Lady Margaret Beaufor t, was the daughter of John Beaufort, Duke of Somerset (son of John of Gau nt by Catherine Swynford), and his wife, Margaret Beauchamp. At the a ge of about seven, she became the child bride of John De La Pole, 2nd Du ke of Suffolk, but the union was later dissolved. The Beaufort stock, thou gh originally bastard, was legitimized by an Act of Parliament in Richa rd II's reign. Thus, on the failure of the heirs of King Henry VI, Margare t's claim to the crown of England became quite a possible one (1471). Su ch as it was, however, the Lancastrian title had originally reste d, if on anything beyond usurpation or parliamentary election, on the excl usion of females.

      Henry VI always looked upon the Beauforts as possible heirs and, in 145 5, married the twelve-year-old Margaret to his own maternal half-brothe r, Edmund Tudor, Earl of Richmond (then aged twenty-five). Her son, afterw ards Henry VII, was born in 1456, and her husband died in the same year. S he, soon afterward, married Henry Stafford, the second son of the Du ke of Buckingham, and submitted to the Yorkist rule; but, after the Batt le of Tewkesbury, she was obliged to send her son, Henry, now the sole ho pe of the Lancastrian cause, to seek refuge in Brittany.

      Margaret's third husband was a pronounced Yorkist, Thomas, Lord Stanley, a fterwards Earl of Derby; but his final defection from Richard III on the f ield of Bosworth secured the victory to his stepson, Henry VII. Margare t, though she seldom appeared at her son's court, remained, until her deat h, his constant correspondent and one of his wisest advisers. She took vo ws of religion in 1504, but continued to live out of a nunnery, although s he had founded several.

      Her great glory is, however, her foundation of the two Colleges of Christ 's and St. John's at Cambridge, and of the' Lady Margaret' professorshi ps of Divinity at both Universities. She was instigated to these foundatio ns by the advice of John Fisher, afterwards Bishop of Rochester, one of t he glories, as indeed Margaret herself also was, of Renaissance learni ng in England. Margaret was an ardent patron of the Early English Press a nd her grandson Henry VIII's love of learning and books was no doubt a dir ect inheritance from her.

      Edited from Emery Walker's "Historical Portraits" (1909).
    Person ID I3306  Glenn Cook Family
    Last Modified 26 Jan 2015 

    Father John Beaufort, 1st Duke of Somerset,   b. 25 Mar 1403, Westminster, Middlesex, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 May 1444  (Age 41 years) 
    Mother Margaret Beauchamp, Duchess of Somerset,   b. 1410,   d. 8 Aug 1482  (Age 72 years) 
    Married Abt 1440 
    Family ID F924  Group Sheet

    Family 1 John de la Pole, 2nd Duke of Suffolk,   b. 27 Sep 1442,   d. 1491  (Age 48 years) 
    Married 1449 
    Type: Annulment 
    Marriage Fact 1452 
    _STAT 1452 
    Last Modified 30 Nov 2006 
    Family ID F929  Group Sheet

    Family 2 Edmund Tudor, Earl of Richmond,   b. 1430,   d. 3 Nov 1456, Carmarthen Castle, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 26 years) 
    Married 1 Nov 1455 
     1. Henry VII Tudor, King of England,   b. 28 Jan 1457, Pembroke Castle, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 21 Apr 1509, Richmond Palace, Richmond, Surrey, England Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 52 years)
    Last Modified 30 Nov 2006 
    Family ID F433  Group Sheet

    Family 3 Sir Henry Stafford, Duke of Buckingham.,   d. 4 Oct 1471 
    Married Abt 1462 
    Last Modified 30 Nov 2006 
    Family ID F6807  Group Sheet

    Family 4 Lord Thomas Stanley, 1st Earl Derby,   b. Abt 1435,   d. 29 Jul 1504, Lathom, Lancashire, England Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 69 years) 
    Married Bef Nov 1482 
    Last Modified 24 Oct 2007 
    Family ID F8754  Group Sheet

  • Sources 
    1. [S36] Directory of Royal Genealogical Data, Brian Tompsett, Dept of Computer Science, University of Hull, England([email protected]), (This work is Copyright b 1994-2002 Brian C Tompsett).