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Henry Grey, 1st Duke of Suffolk

Henry Grey, 1st Duke of Suffolk (1517February 23, 1554) was an English nobleman of the Tudor period, the father of Lady Jane Grey.

The son of Thomas Grey, 2nd Marquess of Dorset and of Margaret Wotton, he became the 3rd Marquess of Dorset in 1530 after his father died. In 1534, with the permission of King Henry VIII he married Frances Brandon (1517 - 1559), the daughter of Henry VIII’s sister Princess Mary Tudor and of Sir Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk. After the deaths of Frances' father (1545) and of his immediate heirs, Henry Grey became Duke of Suffolk on 11 October 1551, Grey was created duke of Suffolk in the same ceremony that elevated John Dudley, earl of Warwick to the duchy of Northumberland (some sources say mistakenly place Grey's elevation to the duchy in 1553).

As the father of Lady Jane Grey (born 1537), Henry Grey tried, with the help of John Dudley, 1st Duke of Northumberland, to have his daughter installed as the Protestant claimant of the throne of England after King Edward VI died (6 July 1553). This attempt ultimately failed (19 July 1553); therefore for a short time Henry switched his allegiance to the victorious Queen Mary I in an attempt to avoid execution.

Mary had Henry Grey beheaded in the following year, after his conviction of treason for his part in Sir Thomas Wyatt's attempt (January - February 1554) to overthrow her after she announced her intention to marry King Philip II of Spain.

Henry Grey and Frances Brandon had three daughters:


  • entry for "Suffolk, Henry Grey, duke of", accessed 2004
  • biography "Suffolk, Henry Grey, duke of" from British And Irish History section, accessed 2003
  • Robert C. Braddock, ‘Grey, Henry, duke of Suffolk (1517-1554)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004.
Last updated: 08-04-2005 19:45:14
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