Leicester Rorert Dudley
Leicester, Rorert Dudley, Earl of (1531-88), was the grandson of one of Henry VII.'s agents and extorters. This grandfather was beheaded by Henry VIII., but his son almost succeeded in diverting the succession to the crown at Edward VI.'s death, though his designs led to his own execution and that of his son Guildford. Robert also was committed to the Tower, and was condemned to death, but received the queen's pardon, and was made Master of the Ordnance. He became Master of the Horse to Queen Elizabeth, and the hopes founded on this appointment are said by some to have led to the death in 1560 of the ill-fated Countess Amy, whom Scott has immortalised. He was made K.G., and the queen gave him Kenilworth Castle, where later (1575) she visited him, and lands in Warwick and Wales. In 1564 he was made Earl of Leicester, and in 1578 he married the widow of the Earl of Essex. In 1585 his expedition to Flushing caused Elizabeth to take offence at the honours paid him by the States-General; but after his recall we find him appointed Lieutenant-General of the army at Tilbury in the last year of his life.