Edward Clinton, 1st Earl of Lincoln

Edward Fiennes de Clinton, 1st Earl of Lincoln, KG (1512 – 16 January 1584/85) was an English nobleman and Lord High Admiral.[1] He rendered valuable service to four of the Tudor monarchs.

Edward Clinton, 1st Earl of Lincoln
Edward Fiennes Clinton, Earl of Lincoln.jpg
Earl of Lincoln

Manor of Scrivelsby, Lincolnshire, England
Died16 January 1584/85
London, England
SpouseElizabeth Blount
Ursula Stourton
Elizabeth FitzGerald
IssueHenry Clinton, 2nd Earl of Lincoln
FatherThomas Clinton, 8th Baron Clinton
MotherJane Poynings
Edward Clinton, Baron Clinton, drawn before his acquisition of the title Earl of Lincoln, by Hans Holbein the Younger, c. 1534–1535. Royal collection, Windsor Castle
"Edward Clinton, Earl of Lincoln, 1584", portrait by unknown artist, National Portrait Gallery, London, NPG 900
Arms of de Clinton, Barons Clinton: Argent, six crosses crosslet fitchée sable three two and one on a chief azure two mullets or pierced gules


Edward Clinton was born at Scrivelsby in Lincolnshire, the son of Thomas Clinton, 8th Baron Clinton (1490–1517), by Jane (or Joan) Poynings, one of the seven illegitimate children of Sir Edward Poynings (1459–1521) of Westenhanger, Kent. She was the sister of Thomas Poynings, 1st Baron Poynings (died 1545), Edward Poynings (died 1546), and Sir Adrian Poynings. After the death of the 8th Baron Clinton in 1517, Jane Poynings married, as his second wife, Sir Robert Wingfield (died 1539).[2][3][4][5].

Clinton succeeded his father as 9th Baron Clinton in 1517. As he was only 5 years old when his father died he was made a royal ward and by 1530 had been married off to the King's ex-mistress, the 30-year-old Bessie Blount.


He joined the retinue of King Henry VIII at Boulogne and Calais in 1532. He sat in the House of Lords in 1536 and later served in the Royal Navy against French and Scottish naval forces from 1544 to 1547. He was knighted in Edinburgh by Edward Seymour, 1st Earl of Hertford for his role in the capture of that city in 1544. He also took part in the Siege of Boulogne in September 1544. Under John Dudley, Viscount Lisle he saw action against the French at the Battle of Spithead in 1545 and was sent as one of the peace commissioners to France the following year. He commanded the English fleet during the invasion of Scotland by Edward Seymour and provided naval artillery support at the Battle of Pinkie on 15 September 1547.

Appointed Governor of Boulogne in 1547, he successfully defended the city against a French siege from 1549 to 1550. That same year, with Henry Manners, 2nd Earl of Rutland, he was appointed Lord Lieutenant of Lincolnshire and of Nottinghamshire and served as Lord High Admiral under King Edward VI from 1550 to 1553, and again from 1559 to 1585. He was a Privy Counsellor from 1550 to 1553, and briefly served as an envoy to France in 1551. After appointment as Lord-Lieutenant of Lincolnshire in 1552, Clinton later took part in the defeat of Wyatt's Rebellion in Kent in 1554.

He was a commander of the expedition of William Herbert, 1st Earl of Pembroke to support the Spanish forces at the Battle of Saint Quentin in northern France on 10 August 1557, but arrived after the battle was largely won. Upon his return to England, Clinton took command of the English fleet, raided the French coast and in 1558 burnt the town of Le Conquet and the surrounding area.

He was a joint commander with Ambrose Dudley, 3rd Earl of Warwick of a large army during the Northern Rebellion; however the army was still being assembled when the rebellion was defeated in January 1570. He was created Earl of Lincoln in 1572, and served as ambassador to France, during which time he undertook several commissions from Queen Elizabeth I until his death in London on 16 January 1585.

In 1541-42 following the dissolution of the monasteries, Clinton and his wife, Ursula, were granted the lands of the earlier Aslackby Preceptory of the Knights Templar—later belonging to the Knights Hospitaller—at Aslackby in Lincolnshire.[6]

Marriage and progenyEdit

Elizabeth FitzGerald, ("the fair Geraldine") daughter of Gerald FitzGerald, 9th Earl of Kildare, third wife of Lord Clinton

He married three times:


He died in London on 16 January 1585.

Further readingEdit


  1. ^ "Clinton, Edward Fiennes de" . Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.
  2. ^ Rose Whetehill (1472-1521+), A Who’s Who of Tudor Women: W-Wh, compiled by Kathy Lynn Emerson to update and correct Wives and Daughters: The Women of Sixteenth-Century England (1984) Archived 21 September 2013 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Stevens 2004.
  4. ^ Cokayne 1945, p. 669.
  5. ^ Robertson 2004.
  6. ^ Kelly's Directory of Lincolnshire 1933, p.42
  7. ^ a b Charles Mosley, editor, Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 107th edition, 3 volumes (Wilmington, Delaware, U.S.A.: Burke's Peerage (Genealogical Books) Ltd, 2003), volume 1, page 587.
  8. ^ a b George Edward Cokayne. Complete peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, extant, extinct, or dormant, Volume 2, G. Bell & sons, 1889. pg 76-77. Google eBook


External linksEdit

Political offices
Preceded by
The Earl of Warwick
Lord High Admiral
Succeeded by
The Lord Howard of Effingham
Preceded by
The Lord Howard of Effingham
Lord High Admiral of England
Succeeded by
The Lord Howard of Effingham
Custos Rotulorum of Surrey
Peerage of England
New creation Earl of Lincoln
Succeeded by
Henry Clinton
Preceded by
Thomas Clinton
Baron Clinton