STAFFORD, Edward (1536-1603), of London.
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Family and Education
b. 17 Jan. 1536, 4th s. of Henry Stafford, 1st Baron Stafford by Ursula, da. of Sir Richard Pole of Ellesborough, Bucks.; bro. of Sir Henry and Walter†. m. by Nov. 1566, Mary, da. of Edward Stanley, 3rd Earl of Derby, 2s. 2da. suc. bro. as 3rd Baron Stafford 1566.2
J.p.q. Glos., Salop, Staffs. by 1573/74, Mont. by 1591; v.-adm. Glos. 1587; member, council in marches of Wales 1601.3
Little is known of Edward Stafford’s youth. His admission to the Middle Temple in 1565 and his MA at Oxford in 1566 came too late to be more than honorary distinctions. He may have finished his education in Europe, where his elder brothers Henry and Thomas travelled widely between 1550 and 1553. In Mary’s reign Edward Stafford ‘late of London’, his father and a number of their retainers were accused in the Star Chamber of forcibly expelling Edward Stanford from an orchard at Forebridge, Staffordshire. The only other reference to Stafford about this time concerns his appearance before the Privy Council on 3 May 1557, shortly after his brother Thomas had failed in an ill-planned attempt to seize Scarborough castle. There is nothing to connect his brother’s treason with Stafford, who was simply ordered to return to his father’s home and await further orders.4
Banbury was incorporated and enfranchised in January 1554 by the ‘labour and diligent suit’ of Baron Stafford and Thomas Denton, the first of whom may have been high steward of the borough. It is thus clear that at Banbury, as at Stafford, Stafford owed his return to his father: he was only 18 when elected for Banbury. His replacement of his uncle at Stafford in 1558 and his brother Sir Henry’s failure to sit in the same Parliament may have had something to do with the divided religious allegiance of the Staffords. His uncle had opposed the initial measures towards the restoration of Catholicism in Mary’s first Parliament and both uncle and brother may have been tainted by Thomas Stafford’s treason, whereas Edward Stafford seems to have remained a Catholic. Yet if it was this which made him more acceptable than others of his family in 1558 it did not prevent his return in 1559, and his later career seems to have been more affected by his character than his religion.5
Stafford died intestate on 18 Oct. 1603.6
Ref Volumes: 1509-1558
Author: T. F.T. Baker
- 1. Huntington Lib. Hastings mss Parl. pprs.
- 2. CP giving date of birth; Staffs. Peds. (Harl. Soc. lxiii), 213; CPR, 1569-72, pp. 35; 245.
- 3. R. Flenley, Cal. Reg. Council, Marches of Wales, 216; P. H. Williams, Council in the Marches of Wales, 358-9; APC, xv. 254.
- 4. St.Ch.4/4/38; APC, vi. 83.
- 5. A. Beesley, Banbury, 222; Cath. Rec. Soc. liii. 125, 230.
- 6. PCC admons. act bk. 1604, f. 190.