The Ufford family derive their origins from a gentleman named John de Peyton, whose younger son Robert obtained the lordship of Ufford in Suffolk and thereby became known as Robert of Ufford. He had a son also named Robert who accompanied Edward I on his expedition to Scotland in 1305 and was created Baron Ufford in 1309. This Robert married Cicely, the only daughter and heiress of Robert de Valoines, the Lord of Walsham from Walsham le Willow, also in Suffolk.

His eldest surviving son, yet another Robert, served Edward III and was amongst those responsible for seizing hold of Roger Mortimer in 1330 and was eventually rewarded by being created the Earl of Suffolk on the 16th March 1336. Robert helped negotiate a treaty with David II of Scotland and later served in France fighting at both the battles of Crecy and Poitiers.

Like his father he married an heiress, Margaret of Norwich ,and on his death in 1369 was succeeded in the earldom by his second son William (Robert the eldest having predeceased him). William, the 2nd Earl similarly served under both Edward III and Richard II and was active in the suppression of the Peasants Revolt in 1381. Although twice married, to Joan Montacute and Isabel de Beauchamp and with four sons, they all died young, and therefore on his death in 1381 the title reverted to the crown.

De la Pole

William de la Pole was a wealthy merchant from Hull who served as the town's first mayor as well as being a baron of the exchequer in 1339. His son named Michael de la Pole became a favourite and key advisor of Richard II and fought in the Hundred Years War under Edward the Black Prince. He was appointed Lord Chancellor in 1383 and granted the vacant title of Earl of Suffolk on the 6th August 1385.

Michael de la Pole however bore the brunt of the opposition to Richard II's policies and was imprisoned, released by the king and then fled to France in 1387 when threatened with arrest once more. He was convicted of treason and attainted in his absence but died in exile in 1388.

His son, also named Michael de la Pole succeeded in winning the restoration of the family title and estates in 1399. He married Katherine Stafford, daughter of Hugh Stafford, the 2nd Earl of Stafford, and died of a fever contracted during the siege of Harfleur on the 14th September 1415. He was succeeded by his eldest son, yet another Michael de la Pole. Unfortunately Michael the 3rd Earl was killed shortly afterwards at the battle of Agincourt on the 25th October 1415 having been earl for scarcely more than a month.

He was therefore succeeded by his younger brother William de la Pole. Like his father and brother, William was involved in the Hundred Years War and in fact spent entire time between the years between 1417 and 1431 fighting in France including a period as a prisoner of Joan of Arc. After his return to England at the end of 1431 he gained increasing influence within government and from 1443 onwards came to dominate the administration of Henry VI.

This was reflected in the flow of honours that came his way, Earl of Pembroke in 1443, Marquess of Suffolk in 1444, and finally Duke of Suffolk in 1448. William was however blamed for English failures in France and the popular opinion of the time judged him a traitor. He was forced into exile in 1450 but kidnapped enroute and assassinated.

Suffolk continued to be held as a Dukedom until the death of the last holder in February 1554 see Duke of Suffolk for further details.


Thomas Howard was the younger son of Thomas Howard the 4th Duke of Norfolk by his second marriage to Margaret Audley (note that the Dukes of Norfolk etc are descended from his elder son Philip Howard by his first marriage to Mary Fitzalan) Thomas Howard the elder was executed in 1572, and his son Thomas was also attainted at the time but won a restoration of his rights in 1584.

When James I came to the throne he was created Earl of Suffolk on the 21st July 1603, was later credited with the discovery of the Gunpowder plot and served as Lord High Treasurer of England until he was accused and convicted of embezzlement.

He was succeeded by his son Theophilus Howard in 1626, who was succeeded by three of his sons, the youngest of whom was Henry Howard, the 5th Earl. The 5th Earl was succeeded by his son Henry Howard, who was also created the Earl of Blindon on the 30th December 1706. Charles William Howard, therefore duly became the 2nd Earl of Bindon as well as the 7th Earl of Suffolk but died without issue in 1722. Whereas the title of Suffolk passed to his uncle that of Blindon became extinct.

Henry Howard, the 10th Earl died without male heirs and the title passed in 1745 to another Henry Howard, a descendant of a younger son of the 1st Earl, who also happened to be the 4th Earl of Berkshire. Since that date this branch of the Howards have held the dual titles of Suffolk and Berkshire but are generally known by the first and senior title.

The current holder is Michael John James George Robert Howard who is the 21st Earl of Suffolk and 14th Earl of Berkshire.




Declared forfeit 1388, restored 1399

As Marquess

Created Duke of Suffolk in 1448, assassinated 1450. See Duke of Suffolk for subsequent creations before 1603.



Ufford, Earls of Suffolk at

Genealogy of Pole of Suffolk
Genealogy of Howard of Berkshire, Howard of Bindon, Howard of Suffolk at

Norfolk genealogy at

Pole, English noble family from the The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition 2001 at

The 1911 Encyclopedia Brittanica entry for
See http://1911encyclopedia.org/index.htm

Royal Genealogy information held at University of Hull see

RoyaList Online at http://www.royalist.info/royalist/index.html

Charles Arnold Baker The Companion to British History (Longcross Press, 1996)

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