Sir George CAREW

Born: 1565

Died: 13 Nov 1612

Buried: St. Margaret's Church, London, England

Father: Thomas CAREW of Antony

Mother: Elizabeth EDGECUMBE

Married: Thomasine GODOLPHIN 7 Jul 1588


1. Richard CAREW (d. at 17 years of age)

2. Francis CAREW (d. 1628)

3. Anne CAREW

4. Mary CAREW

Lawyer and diplomatist, was the second son of Thomas Carew of Antony, and the younger brother of Richard Carew, the historian of Cornwall. 'In his younger years,' says his brother, 'he gathered such fruit as the university, the inns of court, and foreign travel could yield him'. He married in 1588 to Thomazine, daughter of Sir Francis Godolphin, by Margaret Killigrew. After his return from abroad he was called to the bar, obtaining the post of secretary to Lord Chancellor Hatton, and on Hatton's decease held the same office, 'by special recommendation from Queen Elizabeth', under Sir John Puckering and Sir Thomas Egerton keepers of the great seal. Through the same royal favour Carew was made a prothonotary in chancery, and Queen Elizabeth conferred upon him  the honour of knighthood, and in 1598 was dispatched on an embassy to Brunswick, Sweden, Poland, and Danzig. While on this mission, 'through unexpected accidents, he underwent extraordinary perils, but God freed him from them, and he performed his duty in acceptable manner'.

On 21 Dec 1599 he was appointed a master in chancery and held that preferment until his death in 1612.

As the younger son of an influential Cornish family and a leading courtier he had little difficulty in obtaining a seat in parliament for one of the numerous boroughs in Cornwall. He sat for St. Germans in 1584, for Saltash in 1586, 1588, 1593, and for St. Germans again in 1597, 1601, and 1604. The honour of knighthood was conferred upon him at Whitehall 23 Jul 1603, on the eve of the coronation of James I, and in the following year he was nominated to a place in the commission to arrange the affairs of the union of the two countries of England and Scotland.

At the close of 1605 Carew was sent as Ambassador to the court of France, where he remained until Jul 1609, when the French ministers, who regarded him as a friend to the Spanish interests, were not displeased at his return to England. After considerable competition from other seekers after office he secured in Jun 1612 the high and lucrative place of master of the court of wards, which was vacant by the death of Robert Cecil, Earl of Salisbury. The reason for this great promotion was assigned by some to his wife's influence with the Queen, by others to the favour of Robert Carr, Viscount Rochester (after Earl of Somerset), and on his death he was currently reported to have paid dear for the place. Among the Latin epigrams of John Owen is one (bk. vi. No. 20) to the effect that while the King committed to Carew the care of the wards, he showed himself to have a care for Carew's merits. In Aug 1612 he was a member of the commission for raising money for our soldiers in Denmark, and with that appointment his official life was over.

On Friday, 13 Nov 1612, he died, 'in reasonable case, worth 10,000 pounds', and was buried in St. Margaret's, Westminster.

Francis, his elder son was created K.B. at the coronation of King Charles I and attended the Earl of Denbigh in the expedition for the relief of Rochelle, where he acquired great reputation by his courage and conduct. He died in the Isle of Wight, June 4, 1628, at the age of twenty-seven; Richard, the younger son, attained only his seventeenth year; Anne, the eldest daughter was wife of one Rawlin; Mary Carew married Sir Richard Osborne; the other daughter died single.' [Here Betham is wrong, as daughter - see Cokayne's Complete Baronetage Vol. II, p. 260-261.]
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