Sir Anthony Wingfield
Sir Anthony Wingfield was appointed Vice-Chamberlain of Henry VIII”s Household in September 1539 under William Lord Sandys (which post he continued after 1547 under Sir John Gage) and Captain of the King’s Bodyguard of the Yeoman of the Guard on March 9 in the same year, a post he held until April 8, 1551. He was installed as Knight of the Garter at Windsor Castle on April 23 (St. George’s Day) 1541, together with the Earl of Surrey and the Earl of Somerset, both of whom he had later to arrest after Henry VIII”s death — the Lord Protector Somerset actually in Windsor Castle. Sir Anthony Wingfield “was Captain [of the bodyguard of the Yeoman of the Guard] at Henry VIII’s funeral.”
Held in the Garter Chapel (St. George’s Chapel) at Windsor Castle. Henry’s funeral was performed with much pomp.
“16 strong Yeoman of the Guard took the coffin and with four strong linen towels, which they had for their fees, let it into the vault near unto the body of Queen Jane Seymour, his third wife [just west of the altar]. Then the Lord Chamberlain [Henry Fitzalan, Earl of Arundell, the Lord Great Master [8z. President of the council, William Lord St. John], Mr. Treasurer [presumably Sir William Petre — since the Lord Treasurer, Thomas Howard. 3’d Duke of Norfolk, was in the Tower], Mr. Comptroller [Sir John Gage] and the Sergeant Porter, breaking their white staves upon their heads in three parts, as did likewise all Gentlemen Ushers, threw them into the grave. Thus the funeral ended, the trumpets sounded in the Rood the loft, and the company dispersed.”
[Sources: R. Hennell, The History of the Bodyguard of the Yemen of the Guard, 1904, p. 269; D. M. Gladish, the Tudor Privy Council, Retford, 1915, pp. 141-142; H. W. Blackmore, The Romance of St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, 1933, p. 38].
Sir Anthony Wingfield, KG, of Letheringham, Suffolk
by Jocelyn Wingfield
I have compiled Sir Anthony’s resume which follows from many sources. It has never been shown in such detail in one publication before.
1513. Served with distinction in campaign in France. After Henry VIII routed the French at Guinegate at the Battle of the Spurs and thereby captured Tourraine (Therouane) and Tournai. He was knighted in Tourraine for his bravery in the campaign.
1516. Accompanied Charles Somerset abroad. 1520-1522. Accompanied Henry VIII to the Field of the Cloth of Gold in France (with his wife and 5 other Wingfields) and to subsequent meetings with Emperor Charles V.
1523. Served in France (where his uncle, Sir Richard Wingfield of Kimbolton Castle, Knight of the Garter, the famous diplomat, grandfather of Captain Edward-Maria Wingfield, founding father of Jamestown, VA, was a general).
1536. Again serving in France.
1539. Vice-Chamberlain to Henry VIII, Privy Councillor. Appointed Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard on March 9th.
1540. One of the King’s Justices at the arraignment of Sir Edward Knevett for “striking in the Court and so continued Captain of the King’s Bodyguard until 1551-2 [Edward VI succeeding in 1547] when advanced to Comptroller.”
1540. “As Captain of the King’s Guard was at the entrance of Anne of Cleves”, Henry’s 4th Queen (into the country at Deal, Kent and journeying to court via Blackheath). Thomas Wingfield, eldest son of Sir Henry Wingfield, Governor of Orford Castle, was then the 1st Governor of Deal Castle.
1540. Arrested Thomas Cromwell at the Council Board.
1541. On 23rd April at 2r’d Vespers at the Palace of Westminster was, with the Duke of Norfolk and others, honored with the Badge of the Garter. Installed as a Knight of the Garter at Windsor Castle, with the Earl of Surrey on May 22nd. 1546. Arrested the Earl of Surrey and conducted him to the Tower on December 12th.
1547. Captain of the Guard at Henry VIII’s funeral at St.George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. An executor of the King’s will. King Henry left him £200.
1549. Arrested the Protector Somerset, the Regent for Edward VI, at Windsor Castle on October 11th and conveyed him with a huge escort back to London, then through the streets to the Tower on October 14th.
1552. Died 21” August at young Sir John Gates’ place in Bethnal Green, just north of London. Buried in great state with a grand procession and a huge feast “for all comers” in Stepney, just east of the Tower. His great house (one of many) was near St. Anne’s, Limehouse Church and was still known as “Wingfield’s Rents” in 1781. [Sources: Harvey, Reyce’s Beviary of Suffolk, 1618, ed. 1902; Beltz & Hennell, History of the King’s Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard, 1904; my Virginia True Founder.
Sir Anthony’s Genealogical Charts