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The Cavendish Family

This portrait of Sir William Cavendish is in the Long Gallery at Hardwick Hall; he married Bess of Hardwick in 1547 and died in 1557
William Cavendish


William Cavendish, 1593-1676

William Cavendish was born at Handsworth in Yorkshire where he was baptised on 16 December 1593. He was the grandson of William Cavendish and Bess of Hardwick. He attended St John's College, Cambridge, where he was noted for his accomplishments in literature, poetry and music. A close friend of Prince Henry, he was, created a Knight of the Bath in 1612.

Welbeck Abbey

On the death of his father Charles Cavendish in 1617,he inherited the Cavendish estates, including Welbeck Abbey and Bolsover Castle.

He married Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of William Basset of Blore, Staffordshire, widow of the Hon. Henry Howard, in 1618 and was created Viscount Mansfield in 1620. Charles I created him Earl of Newcastle in 1628 and appointed him governor to the Prince of Wales.

He raised the Prince of Wales' Troop, at the onset of the Bishops War 1639, and joined the King's army under the command of the Earl of Holland. In November of that year, he was appointed to the King's Privy Council, however he resigned from this post in 1641 after being suspected of saving the Earl of Strafford from execution.

Civil War - He raised troops to fight for the King, and was appointed Commander-in-Chief of the Royalist counties in northern England in 1642, and created Marquis of Newcastle in 1643.

In 1643, he defeated Sir Thomas Fairfax and secured and subsequently captured Wakefield, Sheffield and Rotherham . In June he secured all Yorkshire, except Hull for the Royalists, as well as securing Newark in Nottinghamshire. In 1644 Thomas Fairfax captured Selby and while defending York, he was captured by Fairfax. At his defeat at the Battle of Marston Moor he went into exile.

He went to Hamburg where he met his second wife, Margaret Lucas, she was the daughter of Sir Thomas Lucas of St John's, Colchester and youngest sister of prominent Royalists, Sir John Lucas and Sir Charles Lucas.

On his return to England, at the Restoration in 1660, he was made Knight of the Garter and was created Duke of Newcastle in 1665. In fighting the Royalist cause, his fortunes had dwindled; when he retired he established a racecourse near Welbeck and spent most of his time at Welbeck Abbey; where he died in 1676.

The Cavendish Family

Lineage - Text not available
A General and Heraldic Dictionary of the Peerage and Baronetage of the United Kingdom. By John Burke

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