Online Encyclopedia

HENRY ARUNDELL

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V02, Page 710 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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HENRY ARUNDELL, 3rd Baron Arundell of Wardour (c. 1607-1694), son of Thomas, 2nd baron, and of Blanche, daughter of Edward, earl of Worcester, was born on the 21st of July 1607, and succeeded on his father's death in 1643 to the family title and estates. A strong royalist and Roman Catholic, he supported the king's cause, and distinguished himself in 1644 by the re-capture of his castle at Wardour from the parliamentarians, who had taken it in the previous year in spite of his mother's brave defence of the place. In 1648 he was one of the delinquents exempted from pardon in the proposals sent to Charles in the Isle of Wight. His estates had been confiscated, but he was permitted about 1653 to compound for them in the sum of £35,000. In 1652, in consequence of his being second at a duel in which one of the combatants was killed, he was arrested, and tried in 1653; he pleaded his peerage, but the privilege was disallowed as the House of Lords had been abolished. At the Restoration he regained possession of the family estates, and in 1663 was made master of the horse to Henrietta Maria. He was one of the few admitted to the king's confidence concerning the projects for the restoration of the Roman Catholic religion and the alliance with France. In 1669 he took part in the secret council assembled by Charles II., and in October was sent to France, ostensibly for the funeral of Henrietta Maria, but in reality to negotiate with Louis XIV. the agreement which took shape in 167o in the treaties of Dover (see CHARLES II.). In 1676 he was privy to James's negotiations with Rome through Coleman. He was accused in 1678 by Titus Oates of participation in the popish plot, and was one of the five Roman Catholic -peers arrested and imprisoned in the Tower in October, found guilty by the Middlesex grand jury of high treason, and impeached subsequently by the parliament. Lord Stafford was found guilty and executed in December 168o, but after the perpetration of this injustice the proceedings were interrupted, and the three surviving peers were released on bail on the 12th of February 1684. On the 22nd of May 1685, after James II.'s accession, the charge was annulled, and on the 1st of June 1685 they obtained their full liberty. In February 1686, with other Roman Catholics, Arundell urged upon the king the removal of his mistress, Lady Dorchester, on account of her strong Protestantism. In spite of his religion he was made a privy councillor in August 1686, and keeper of the privy seal in 1687, being excused from taking the oaths by the king's dispensation. He presented the thanks of the Roman Catholics to James in June 1687 for the declaration of indulgence. His public career ended with the abdication of the king, and he retired to Breamore, the family residence since the destruction of Wardour Castle. He died on the 28th of December 1694. He was the author of five religious poems said to be composed during his confinement in the Tower in 1679, published the same year and reprinted in A -Collection of Eighty-six Loyal Poems in 1685. His piety and benevolence to his unfortunate co-religionists were conspicuous. Evelyn calls him " very good company " and he was a noted sportsman, the Quorn pack being descended from his pack of hounds at Breamore. He married Cecily, daughter of Sir Henry Compton, by whom besides other children he had Thomas, who succeeded him as 4th baron. The barony is still held in the Arundell family, which has never ceased to be Roman Catholic. The 14th baron (b. 1859) was a direct descendent of the 6th.
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