, son of the preceding, baron of Maipas, viscount L‘Isle, earl of Warwick, and duke of No
, son of the preceding, baron of Maipas, viscount L‘Isle, earl of Warwick, and duke of Northumberland, was born in 1502, and afterwards became one of the most powerful subjects this kingdom ever saw. At the time his father was beheaded, he was about eight years old; and it being known that the severity exercised in that act was rather to satisfy popular clamour than justice, his friends found no great difficulty in obtaining from the parliament, that his father’s attainder might be reversed, and himself restored in blood; for which purpose a special act was passed in 1511. After an education suitable to his quality, he was introduced at court in 15-23, where, having a line person, and great accomplishments, he soon became admired. He attended the king’s favourite, Charles Brandon, duke of Suffolk, in his expedition to France; and distinguished himself so much by his gallant behaviour, that he obtained the honour of knighthood. He attached himself to cardinal Wolsey, whom he accompanied in his embassy to France; and he was also in great confidence with the next prime minister, lord Cromwell. The fall of these eminent statesmen one after another, did not at all affect the favour or fortune of sir John Dudley, who had great dexterity in preserving their good graces, without embarking too far in their designs; preserving always a proper regard for the sentiments of his sovereign, which kept him in full credit at court, in the midst of many changes, as well of men as measures. In 1542, he was raised to the dignity of viscount L’Isle, and at the next festival of St. George, was elected knight of the garter. This was soon after followed by a much higher instance both of kindness and trust; for the king, considering his uncommon abilities and courage, and the occasion he had then for them, made him lord high admiral of England for life; and in this important post he did many singular services. He owed all his honours and fortune to Henry VII L and received from him, towards the close of his reign, very large grants of church lands, which, however, created him many enemies. He was also named by king Henry in his will, to be one of his sixteen executors; and received from him a legacy of 500l. which was the highest he bestowed on any of them.