Ancestors of a 21st century British family

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  • ID: I7782
  • Name: Thomas Alen 1
  • Sex: M
  • Birth: in Cotteshall, Norfolk, England
  • Residence: St Wolstan?s, Celbridge, Kildare, Ireland
  • LVG: 1556
  • Note: Thomas the Clerk of the H was living then
  • Occupation: Clerk of the Hanaper 1556
  • Note: 2 3 4 5 5 6

    His name is given as John, but I believe he must be Thomas, Clerk of the Hanaper, brother and heir of Sir John Alen.
    Presumably born of Cotteshall, Norfolk, if his brother John was.
    One of these accounts says that the John Alen who was given St Wolstan?s died without issue, so if so this man can not be him. The property passed to John?s brother Stephen, but we do not have a Stephen in the line of descent.
    ?These great possessions of the priory [of St Wolstans] were then given to the Alen family, who were English Catholics and faithful servants of the King. John Alen, who was Archbishop of Dublin [1530-1534] and arch enemy of the Geraldines, was murdered in the Silken Thomas Rebellion. In compensation for his death Henry VIII gave the lands of St. Wolstans, which also included the lands of the Fitzgeralds in Kildrought, to his cousin John Alen. His brother, William, took a lease of the lands of Castletown.
    John Alen came to Ireland in 1530 to [?] his cousin Archbishop John Alen of Dublin [d 1534]. He was appointed Master of' the Rolls in 1533 and Lord Chancellor of the Exchequer in Ireland in 1536. He was knighted in 1542 and was renowned as one of the wealthiest and most powerful men in Ireland. He died in 1561 and was buried in the vault of a side chapel in Donaghcomper Church. The vault was covered with a large stone which can still be seen.?
    [Archbishop & Lord Chancellor] John Alen, or Allen, as the name is more constantly written, was born in the year 1476. He was of English descent, and, as far as I can learn, of a Norfolk family, several members of which subsequently settled in Ireland.
    In 1536, on the Suppression of the Monasteries, this establishment, with its extensive estates, was taken possession of by the Crown, the Prior, Richard Weston, being provided with a pension, quarters, rations, and firing, chargeable on the property.
    In 1538 John Alen, of Norfolk, assumed possession of the estate under the authority of a Royal Warrant, and in 1539 was appointed Lord Chancellor. St. Wolstan's then became known as Alen's Court, and Sir John Alen, having died without issue, was succeeded in possession by his brother, Thomas Alen, Clerk of the Hanaper* [living 1556, see below].
    Coming down to more recent times, we find Sir Patrick Alen, an adherent of James II, raising at his own expense a body of troops for the use of that unfortunate monarch. He became a major-general in the Jacobite army, was present at the siege of Limerick, and as a result of the terms of capitulation, was allowed to retain his estates, notwithstanding his adherence to the Roman Catholic Faith. He married twice, and had a total family of forty-two children.
    * Clerk of the Hanaper: officer of the Court of Chancery, who, among other things, functioned as an accounting liaison between the law Courts of the Kings Bench, and Common Pleas and the Exchequer in the matter of the sealing fees accruing to the Crown from both courts. The name derives from the Old French, hanapier, meaning a case for a valuable cup or goblet, and from the English hanaper, or wicker receptacle for valuables and documents.
    Source: Ferne-Ago: an introduction to medieval words and terms, compiled by J. C. Gall.
    DONAGHCUMPER, or DONOCOMPER, parish, in the barony of SOUTH SALT, county of KILDARE, and province of LEINSTER, 21?2 miles (S. W. by S.) from Leixlip, also called Donocomfert, was distinguished at an early period by its priory for canons of the order of St. Victor, founded in 1202 by Adam de Hereford, in honour of St. Wolstan, Bishop of Worcester, then recently canonized.
    At the dissolution it was granted to Sir John Alen, the master of the rolls in Ireland, and afterwards lord chancellor, who was buried in the parish church, in which, till within a few years, was a monument bearing his effigy. The parish is situated on the road from Dublin to Celbridge, from which latter place it is separated only by the river Liffey.
    A splendid mansion was erected here by Sir John Alen, on the priory lands, the site of which is now occupied by a handsome modern mansion, called St. Wolstan's,the seat of Richard Cane, Esq.
    (Lewis's Topographical Dictionary 1837)
    John Alen, Master of the Rolls, was the first to profit by the spoliation of the religious houses by getting possession of the property of St. Wolstan?s (1536).
    Sir John Alen, formerly Lord Chancellor and Chief Commissioner for the dissolution of the monasteries, wrote [in 1558, after the accession of Queen Elizabeth] to Cecil to express his joy at the latter's promotion, enclosed "a token," and reminded him of what he (Alen) had suffered during the previous five years.
    See ?The will of Sir John Alen, Knt., Lord Chancellor of Ireland, of Alen's Court, or St. Wolstan's, County Kildare [note], by Lord Walter FitzGerald: JOURNAL OF THE
    COUNTY KILDARE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SOCIETY Vol. IV, No. 2 (July 1903) pp 164-166.
    1538: A 21-year lease was granted to John Alen [on Leixlip castle], who was also given St Wolstan?s Abbey at the same time. He lived at the latter place, which he renamed Alenscourt and a related Alen was given the Castle.
    1538 & 1545-6: Lease to the Hon John Alen, esq, chancellor; of the castle and manor of Lexlip alias Salmon-leap, lands, Lexlip, Aderge, Balmadure, Stacumny, Newtown, Keladowan, Possewykyston, Caresland, in the parish of Kildrought, and Confye, county Kildare, possessions of James Fitzgeralde, attainted; [and other lands not connected with Leixlip area] leased to the said Alen for 21 years, 4 December 1538. To hold for 10 years from 1558, at a rent of £32 6s 8d. 23 March xxxvii [=1545-6]. [Fiant No 478: The Irish Fiants of the Tudor Sovereigns during the Reigns of Henry VIII, Edward VI, Philip & Mary, and Elizabeth I, Vol 1, 1521-1588, Dublin, 1994.]
    1538-9: Grant to John Alen, of Cowteshale, in the county of Norfolk, gent, Clerk and Master of the Rolls and Records of Chancery, of the site, circuit, and lands of the late monastery or priory of St Wulstans, the manor of Donaghcumper, and all hereditaments and possessions whatsoever spiritual and temporal in Donaghcumper, St Wulstans, lez Mochefeldes, and Waterfeldes, at St Wulstans aforesaid; and in Personeston, Stacumney, Bacbieston otherwise Backweston, Lexlip, Grangegorman, Rewe, Priorstown, etc. The advowsons and patronage of the churches or chapels of Donaghcumper, Stacumney, Killadown and Donaghmore; with all tithes, pensions, oblations, glebes, and other emoluments and profits belonging to the said churches, rectories, or chapels in the county of Kildare. To hold forever by the service of one knight?s fee, ?as scutage runs? [= in accordance with the standard fees in lieu of service]. Rent, £10. 1/12/1539. [James Morrin (ed), Extracts from Calendar of the Patent and Close Rolls of Chancery in Ireland, Vol I, Henry VIII, Edward VI, Mary & Elizabeth I, Dublin, 1861, No 47.]
    1552: Licence to John Alen, knt., late chancellor, to alienate to Christopher, son and heir of Patrick Barnwall, of Gracedew [Gracedieu], knt, Christopher, son and heir of Thos Luttrell, of Luttrellisston, knt., William, son and heir of Thos Talbot, of Malahide, knt., Thos., son and heir of Richard Alymer, of Lyons, esq., ?., forever, his manor of Alenscorte, formerly S Wulstans, near the Newbridge, upon Alen, the manor of Donaghcumper, co Kildare and all lands etc in S Wulstans, Donaghcumper, and in the parish of Donaghcumper, Personstown, Lexlip [Leixlip], Donaghmore, Kilmacredoke, Grangegorman, Backbieston alias Bacweston, Stacumney, Laghlynston, Potterston, Symondeston, Galbeggiston, Meyston, Colflitche, Rew, etc..; the advowsons and rectories of Donaghcumper, Stacumney, Killadowan and Donaghmore, co Kildare; the manor of Palmerstown, Irishton, Bacbieston, Coldreny and Lucan, co Dublin. Also pardon to the said John Alen - 22 November, vi Edward VI [=1552] [Fiants of Edward VI, No 1095, dated 22/11/1552, cited in The Irish Fiants of the Tudor Sovereigns during the Reigns of Henry VIII, Edward VI, Philip & Mary, and Elizabeth I, Vol I, Dublin 1994].
    1556: On 3/7/1556 Philip & Mary granted a commission to [inter alia] Nicholas Eustace, sheriff of Kildare, and Thomas Alen, clerk of the Hanaper, to be justices and keepers of the peace in ? co Kildare, and the marches and liberties of the same, in the absence of the Deputy on an expedition against the Scots and other enemies in the North. [Fiant no.113, Philip & Mary, cited in Appendix IV, 9th Report of the Deputy Keeper of Public Records in Ireland].
    1557: On 2/12/1557 Philip & Mary granted a pardon to John Alen, of Alenscourt, or S. Wulstans, co Kildare, knt, late chancellor of Ireland, and Patrick Sarsfield, of Thistledelan, [= Castledillon], gent. [Fiant No 173, Philip & Mary, cited in Appendix IV, 9th Report of the Deputy Keeper of Public Records in Ireland]
    1661: Charles II directed that all the lands of St Wolstan?s, with the several castles, lands etc be granted to the Earl of Mountalexander, which lands were with Sir Thomas Allen in his lifetime and which he conveyed in trust for the use of himself and his lady or the longer lived of them, and then made a lease of 61 years of the premises to these trustees for the executors, admins and assigns of the said lady, to commence from the day of his death at 40s per annum. She is still living and the reversion of the premises descended to Thomas Allen, heir to Sir Thomas, and to John, heir to Thomas. As one or both of them were attainted of high treason, their lands came into the King?s hands, which he now granted to Mountalexander. [RP Mahaffy (ed), Calendar of State papers relating to Ireland, 1660-1662, London, 1905, 19/10/1661, p444.]
    Who is this:
    In a will made out in 1561, 'all these lands of his (Sir James Alen of Saint Wolstan's) were the gift made to him by King Henry VIII of most noble memory, up to the dissolution of the monastery or priory of Saint Wolstan's; his principal place by ...
  • _UID: DA8E0AA2D48E4F67B0C25F7B67489DEFB383
  • Change Date: 2 APR 2013

    Father: Francis Alen
    Mother: Cordelia Eustace b: in of Castle Martin, Kildare

    Marriage 1 Catherine Nugent
    • Married:
    1. Has Children John Alen

    1. Title: Burke's History of the Commoners
      Author: John Burke
      Publication: 1836, Vols. I - IV
      Page: Name given as John
    2. Type: Web Site
      Author: Patrick Doohan
      Title: History of Celbridge
    3. Text: The Lives of the Lord Chancellors and Keepers of the Great Seal of Ireland - from the earliest times to the reign of Queen Victoria.
      By J. Roderick O'Flanagan
    4. Type: Web Site
      Author: Weston St. John Joyce
      Title: The Neighbourhood of Dublin
      Date: 3rd & enlarged edition 1920
    5. Type: Book
      Periodical: HISTORY OF THE CATHOLIC†CHURCH From the Renaissance to the French†Revolution
      Author: Rev. James MacCaffrey, S.J.
      Date: 1914
    6. Text: Co. Kildare Online Electronic History Journal
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