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Bradeston, Thomas, Lord Bradeston (d. 1360), soldier and royal councillor, was probably the son of Robert de Bradeston, a minor landowner of Breadstone, Gloucestershire. The Bradestons were close allies of the Berkeleys of Berkeley Castle, their near neighbours, and Thomas probably began his career in the ...

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Burley, Sir Simon (1336?–1388), soldier and courtier, was the second of at least three sons of a minor Herefordshire landowner, perhaps Roger Burley (fl. 1322–1331); Simon's nephew was also named Roger. Simon's elder brother Sir John Burley, and John's son Sir Richard...

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Thomas Cecil, first earl of Exeter (1542–1623) by unknown artist, c. 1610 The Burghley House Collection. Photograph: Photographic Survey, Courtauld Institute of Art, London

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Cecil, Thomas, first earl of Exeter (1542–1623), courtier and soldier, was born in Cambridge on 5 May 1542, the eldest son of William Cecil, first Baron Burghley (1520/21–1598), and his first wife, Mary (c.1520–1544), sister of John Cheke. His mother died when he was less than two years old and he never seems to have aroused any affection in his puritanical stepmother, ...

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Devereux, John, Baron Devereux (d. 1393), soldier and royal councillor, of Dinton, Buckinghamshire, was reputedly a younger son of William Devereux of Bodenham, Herefordshire, but his background remains obscure. The foundations of his reputation for military prowess were already laid before 1366 (by when he was certainly a knight), the year he was recruited by the great Breton commander ...

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Fitzalan, Richard, third earl of Arundel and eighth earl of Surrey (c. 1313–1376), soldier, diplomat, and royal councillor, known as ‘Copped Hat’, was the son of Edmund Fitzalan, second earl of Arundel (1285–1326), and Alice, sister of John de Warenne, seventh earl of Surrey...

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Ingham, Oliver, Lord Ingham (c. 1287–1344), soldier and seneschal of Aquitaine, was son and heir of Sir John Ingham (1260–1309), of Ingham, Norfolk, and his wife, Margery. His father served in Edward I's Scottish wars and he was himself summoned for military service in ...

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Manners, Henry, second earl of Rutland (1526–1563), courtier and soldier, was born on 23 September 1526 and baptized after 24 December at Elsinges Manor, Enfield, Middlesex, the eldest son of five sons and six daughters of Thomas Manners, first earl of Rutland (c. 1497–1543)...

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Radcliffe, Robert, first earl of Sussex (1482/3–1542), soldier and courtier, was the son and heir of John Ratcliffe, sixth Baron Fitzwalter (1452–1496), and his wife, Margaret. The sixth baron was attainted and executed in 1496 for his part in the Perkin Warbeck conspiracy and it was not until November 1505 that the attainder was reversed. His son was first summoned to ...

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Radcliffe, Robert, fifth earl of Sussex (1573–1629), soldier and courtier, was born on 12 June 1573, the son of Henry Radcliffe, fourth earl of Sussex (1533–1593), and his wife, Honor (d. 1593), daughter of Anthony Pound of Farlington, Hampshire. His birthplace is unknown, though it may well have been ...