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John Seymour Monumnet at St. Mary the Virgin, Great Bedwyn, Wiltshire



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This monument (dated 1590) is in memory of Sir John Seymour (died 1536) who was the father of Queen Jane Seymour, wife of King Henry VIII.  Unfortunately a lot of our photographs of the monument were somewhat blurred; we have used some of them on this page but intend to return to Great Bedwyn to re-take them.

The inscription is readable if you download the full-size image and 'zoom' in closer - there is a wealth of information about Sir John's family to be found in this inscription.  Both the John Aubrey book (shown after photographs) and the church history guide have copied the inscription, making it much easier to read, and we have copied this at the end of these photographs.

Monument to Sir John Seymour
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Great Bedwyn - photo: 0158
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Photo Date: August 2006
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Photo blurred
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Photo Date: June 2000
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Detail of chain-armour around the neck
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Photo Date: September 2001
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Photo Date: June 2000
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Photo Date: September 2001
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Buckle on armour
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Photo Date: September 2001
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Feet rest on a lion
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Photo Date: August 2006
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Photo Date: August 2006

Here is the Aubrey entry, taken from his Wiltshire Collections book:

"Here lyeth intombed the worthie Sr. JOHN SEYMOUR of Wolphall Knight: who by Margerie his Wyfe, Daughter of Sr. Henry Wentworthe, Knight, from whome the nowe Lorde Wentworthe is discended, had Six Sonnes and Fower Daughters:   To wete, John, who dyed unmarryed.   Edward, Duke of Somerset.   Earl of Hertforde, Viscount Beauechampe and Baron Seymour, Uncleto Kinge Edwarde the Sixt, Governor of his Royall Person, Protector of all his Dominions and Subjects, Lorde Tresorer and Earle Marshall of Englande; wch Duke maryed Anne*, Daughter of Sr. Edward Stanhope, Knight, by Elizabeth his Wyfe, Daughter of Sr. Foulke Burgchier, Lord Fitzwaryn, from whome the moderne Earles of Bath are discended.   Sr. Henry Seymour Knight, who maried Barbara, Daughter of Thomas Morgan (1), Esquier. Thomas, Lorde Seymour of Sudeley, Highe Admirall of England, who maryed Katherine, Queen of Englande, and Wydow to Kinge Henry the Eight.   One other Jhon and Anthony, who died in theire Infancy.   Jane Queene of Englande, Wyfe to Kynge Henry the Eight, and Mother to Kyng Edwarde the Sixt. Elizabeth, firste maryed to Sr. Henry Ughtred, Knight, after to Gregorie, Lorde Cromwell, and last to Jhon, Lord Sainct John of Basinge, after Marquesse of Winchester.   Margerie, who dyed in her Infancy, and Dorothe, maryed to Sr. Clement Smythe, Knight.

"This Knight departed this Lyfe at LX yeares of age, the XXI day of December, Anno 1536, and was fyrste buryed at Easton Priorie Church, amongst divers of his Auncestors, bothe Seymours and Sturmyes;   Howbeit that Church being ruined, and thereby all theire Monumentes either whollie spoyled, or verie much defased during the Mynoritie of Edwarde, Earle of Hertforde, Sonne to the said Duke, The said Earle after, as well for the dutiful Love he beareth to his said Grandefather, as for the better Contynvans of his Memory, did cause his Bodie to be removed, and here to be intombed at his own Coste and Chardge, the laste daye of September, Anno 1590, in the XXXII year of the most heppye Raigne of our gratious Soveraigne Ladie, Queene Elizabeth.

* But he should have sayed that he was married first to (Katharine) d. and coh: of Filloll, of Dorsetshire, from whom are descended the Seymours of Devonshire.(1)

Note 1.
The Protector was twice married; but having been divorced from his first wife Katharine Filliol, he passed over her issue in the succession, and left it first in the line of the younger House the children of his second Duchess Ann Stanhope.   Whatever the real motive for this proceeding may have been, it would of course suit the policy of the second House by whom this inscription was written, to ignore the first marriage.   But time has made amends for the omission.   By the failure of the younger branch, the elder House of Seymour has long since recovered the title, and the lineal descendant of Katharine Filliol is now Duke of Somerset."

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