Richard FIENNES

(7th B. Saye and Sele)

Born: ABT 1557, Broughton Castle, Oxfordshire, England

Died: 1613

Father: Richard FIENNES (6° B. Saye and Sele)

Mother: Ursula FERMOR

Married: Constance KINGSMILL ABT 1570, Sidmanton, Hampshire, England

Children:

1. William FIENNES (1° V. Saye and Sele)

2. Anne FIENNES

3. Ursula FIENNES


Son of Richard Fiennes, De jure sixth Baron, and Ursula Fermor. Educated at Winchester where he was admitted as Founder’s Kin in 1569. The Privy Council committed sixteen recusants to his charge at Broughton Castle in 1590. Queen Elizabeth knighted him in the thirty-fifth year of her reign. He was sheriff of Oxford, accompanied his cousin the Earl of Lincoln, Ambassador to the Landgrave of Hesse in 1596, traveled to Florence and Verona, and accompanied the Earl of Hereford, Ambassador to the Archduke Albert at Brussels in 1605. From his father’s death in 1573, Richard Fiennes, pressed in vain for eighteen years to be recognized as the Baron Saye and Sele. Upon the succession of James I, who was more lenient in matter of titles than Elizabeth I, Lord Burghley intervened upon behalf of Richard Fiennes in 1603 to obtain a patent confirming to him and the heirs of his body the (1) name, style, title, rank, dignity, and honor of Baron Saye and Sele of the 1447 creation, (2) creation of him as Baron of Saye and Sele with the same remainder, and (3) the grantee and his heirs should not claim precedence of the old Barons of Saye and Sele but should rank next after the Barons then existing. Because it was assumed in 1603 that the 1447 creation was by writ of summons, and not by patent, the succession was altered from that of heirs male to those of the heirs general, thereby allowing the title to pass through daughters. It was not the intention of James I to create a new barony, but the 1603 patent did. The reduction in precedence from that of 1447 to 1603 was a blow to the Fiennes family’s pride, but they yielded in order to claim the title that had been dormant since the death of the second baron in battle in 1471. The failure of seventeenth-century peerage lawyers to distinguish titles created by writ of summons from those created by patent caused confusion. This familure, exploited by lawyers was to the consternation of Round.

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