Henry Howard

Henry Howard (Sixth Duke of Norfolk)
Birth and death
1628 - 1684
Related place
Alistair Grant

Henry Howard, sixth Duke of Norfolk (1628 - 1684). The insanity of his elder brother, Thomas, meant Henry Howard became head of the illustrious Howard family, which was heavily indebted and outcast because of their Royalist associations and Catholicism. John Evelyn felt Howard had great abilities and articulacy, but poor judgement. He built lavishly, spending over £10,000 on his palace at Weybridge, which he completed in 1678. In Evelyn's view he built unwisely on a 'miserable sandy site'. He allowed his priests to steal books from his magnificent library, and in an attempt to preserve it Evelyn persuaded him to give it to the Royal Society. In 1668 he also gave the marbles collected by his grandfather to Oxford University. After the death of his first wife, Anne, in 1662, Howard, according to Evelyn fell into 'base and vicious courses', taking an actress, Jane Bickerton as his mistress. He married her on 23rd January 1678, after his succession to the Dukedom of Norfolk.

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