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James Boleyn Kt (abt. 1480 - 1561)

Sir James Boleyn Kt
Born about in Norfolk, Englandmap [uncertain]
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Died in Norfolk, Englandmap [uncertain]
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Profile last modified | Created 16 Jan 2018 | Last significant change: 17 Apr 2021
15:47: N Fanning edited the Biography for James Boleyn Kt (abt.1480-1561). [Thank N for this | 1 thank-you received]
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James Boleyn was born about 1480, the 2nd son of Sir William Boleyn of Blickling, Norfolk, and Margaret, the 2nd daughter of Thomas Butler, 7th Earl of Ormond[1].

James was a beneficiary of the will of his father, Sir William Boleyn, the will made on 08 Oct 1505 and proved on 27 Nov 1505[2]. As the will referred to James' brother, William, as being under the age of 21 at the time the will was made, but did not make a similar statement for James, it is presumed that James was born before 1485.

He was knighted in 1520 and succeeded to the entailed lands of his elder brother Thomas, Earl of Wiltshire, in 1539[1].

He married Elizabeth, daughter of John Awodde or Wood of East Barsham, Norfolk[1]. "Sir James Boleyn, Knt. of Blickling and Salle, married Elizabeth Wood of East-Marsham; he died without issue, and was buried with great pomp at Blickling, in December 1561"[3].

Summary of the will of Sir James Boleyn 1561

In his will made on 20 Aug 1561 and proved on 21 Nov 1561 he was recorded as "Sir James Bowleyne of Blicklyn in the Countie of Norfolke Knight"[4]. If he were to die within 20 miles of Blickling, Norfolk, then his will was that "my boddie shalbe buried in the Channcell of the pish [parish] church of Blyklyng on the north syde thereof nere the Estende".

He made an interesting bequest to Queen Elizabeth as follows:

"To my most gracius soveraigne Ladie the Quenes most exellent matie my bason and ewer all gilte and my written booke of the revelacons of Sainte Bridgect most humblie beseching her highnes to reede and well to ponder the same humbly herewith beseching her said hignes to give unto my nece Elizabeth Shelton having at this daie nothing certaine wherewith to comforte or releve her self the fower hundred pounds oeing to me by her grace for and in consideracon of the annuytie with the acreage due unto me oute of the mannor of Hethendon in the Countie of Kente the paimente whereof it hath pleased her gracius goodnes to grannte and promis unto me (which sommes I doe for very charitie grannte and give as before unto my said nece, right humblie beseching her good grace to extend her mercie and goodnes unto that poore gentlewoman now utterlie destitute and unprovided of frendeshipp, or place certaine whereunto to resorte for cumforte."

He noted his nephew Sir John Clere.

He stated that his nephew Edware Clere esq owed him £400, part of the debt of Edward's father he having purchased the Manor of Blickling from Sir James Boleyn.

He made bequests including to:

his niece Elizabeth Shelton;

his niece Elizabeth Payne and her husband Thomas Payne gentleman;

his niece Mary Brampton; and

his nephew and servant John Wodhom gentleman.

His Executors were his cousin and friend Sir Richard Southwell, knight, his neighbour John Callarde esq., and his nephew Thomas Payne, gentleman.

Research Notes

Verbatim from the Calendar of Ormond Deeds:[5]

  • "Deed of Anne Seintleger, widow, one of the daughters and heirs of Thomas, late Earl of Ormond, and George Seintleger, knight, son and heir of the said Anne, appointing James Boleyn, knight, nephew of above Anne, to act in their place; also appointing said James Boleyn to receive possession and seisin of all honours, castles, lordships, hundreds, manors, courts, lands, islands, rents, etc., in Ireland which belong to them or either of them; also giving power to said James to appoint to all offices of seneschals, bailiffs, keepers of castles, ministers and all other officers, and to make leases at farm at his own discretion, saving always the rights of the grantors; and instructing all seneschals, etc., of the abovesaid honours, etc., to be intendent and obedient to him, etc. Signatures: Anne Seyntleger, George Seyntleger. May 10, 1520."


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Boleyn (Bullen), Sir James (c.1480-1561), of Blickling, Norf. Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982 [1].
  2. Will of Sir William Boleyn of Blikling Norfolk. 27 Nov 1505. PROB 11/14/790. National Archives.
  3. Francis Blomefield, 'Hundred of South Erpingham: Blickling', in An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 6 (London, 1807), pp. 381-409. British History Online.
  4. Will of Sir James Bowleyne or Boleyn of Blickling, Norfolk. 21 Nov 1561. PROB 11/44/387. National Archives.
  5. Vol. IV (1509-1547), item #64, p.62:

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Rejected matches › James Bowen Knight (abt.1480-1539)

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Categories: Blickling, Norfolk