Brass of the Month
Copyright © 2017 Monumental Brass Society (MBS)
Page last updated 10 July 2017
July 2017 -
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It was Sir George Throckmorton's father Sir Robert who had apparently made Coughton in Warwickshire the family seat, albeit settling at no great distance from the ancestral home of the Throckmortons at Fladbury in Worcestershire. George finished his education at the Middle Temple, which he entered alongside his kinsman Sir Edmund Knightley on 1 May 1505. While Knightley, a younger son, pursued a legal career, Sir George's attendance was aimed at giving him an understanding of the law sufficient to hold his own as a landowner and in those official duties likely to come the way of those in his position. He went on to hold many posts but was also prominent at court as an esquire of the body by 1511 and king's spear in 1513. He also served in the war against France in the latter year. He married Catherine the daughter of another courtier, Sir Nicholas Vaux (later Lord Vaux) in or before 1512. George's uncle Sir William Throckmorton was a trusted servant of Cardinal Wolsey and George had a number of dealings with the cardinal and was made Steward of the lands of the bishopric of Worcester in Warwickshire and Worcestershire after requesting this and other offices in 1528. Wolsey employed Throckmorton to deal with disputes in his area of the Midlands but he was not implicated in Wolsey's fall. He was elected MP for Warwickshire in 1529 and may have sat in the both the preceding and succeeding parliaments. He was knighted in or before 1533 but imprisoned in 1537, confessing his part in the Catholic opposition to Henry VIII's reformation although in a rather confused manner that does not not clarify exactly what he had opposed. He was suspected of expressing support for the rebels in the North but there was seemingly insufficient evidence to sustain any charges. He was imprisoned again a few months later but was soon free again. In 1538, a kinsman, Richard Rich, suggested he receive building material from Bordeley Abbey following its dissolution. He flourished after Thomas Cromwell's fall, in which he may have played a minor part, acquiring a number of properties and serving again in the post of Sheriff of Warwickshire. Seven of his eight sons sat as MPs in Parliament and he also had eleven daughters. He had spent much of his life rebuilding Coughton Court, which survives today much as it as Sir George left it.
This month's brass was made before the deaths of both husband and wife. Mill Stephenson dated it to c.1535 but it is likely to date from some years later.
Sir George's brass is one of the most significant belonging to those designated Coventry 3. It is set in a large Purbeck marble cover slab with a marginal inscription set in a chamfer of unusual shape. This lies on a tomb chest constructed of Purbeck marble, a couple of the panels of which show clear signs of re-
Copyright: Jon Bayliss