An important & influential figure entered the life of Elizabeth TUDOR in late 1544. She was aged 11; he 29. He was her Master of the Italian Tongue, & her Tutor in the Italic Script; and he had one or two other tricks up his Italianate sleeve.
WYATT has noted that:
"Elizabeth had learned to speak and write Italian at an early age, & her fluency in a number of languages was considered remarkable by those who witnessed her linguistic skills in action. Her polyglotism is all the more extraordinary given that she never set foot on the European continent. Her preference for Italian & the prominence she accorded Italian culture can to a high degree be ascribed to the close presence in her life of Giovanni Battista CASTIGLIONE...
"[He] was among the the few who would have shared the young Elizabeth's life on such intimate terms (certainly no other foreigner did) and it is a sign of her dedication to him that the culture he opened to her would come to play such a significant role in the era over which she presided."
[Michael WYATT, "The Italian Encounter with Tudor England: A Cultural Politics of Translation," Cambridge University Press, 2005, p.125.]
GIOVANNI'S EARLY LIFE.
Born into a semi-aristocratic Mantuan family, albeit in Gassino-Torinese, Piemonte, ca 1515-16, Giovanni Battista CASTIGLIONE was the son of Piero CASTIGLIONE, a Captain in the Army of Maximillian, Holy Roman Emperor. His mother has yet to be identified, & it is quite possible that he was illegitimate.
Giovanni was educated in the courtly skills that were part of his family heritage (his relation was Baldassare CASTIGLIONE, author of "Il Libro del Courtigiano," & in 1506 an ambassador to the Court of Henry VII to receive for his master, the Duke of Urbino, an Order of the Garter).
Giovanni joined the Army, in the service of another Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V. He was probably in the Regiment of another relation, Ferrante GONZAGA, Capitaine-Generale to Charles V, at the Siege of Landrècies, France, in Sep 1543, or that of Alexander GONZAGA (named below). The siege was a stratagem to flush out the French King, François I, by making him try to break the seige, & so engage him in battle.
There they collaborated with an English Army under the command of Sir Henry WALLOP & Thomas SEYMOUR (who later, as the Lord Admiral, sought to insinuate himself into Elizabeth TUDOR's graces, but had to settle instead with her step-mother, Henry's widow, Katherine PARR).
WALLOP & SEYMOUR both made written observations about their European counterparts; WALLOP, in a letter from Landrecies to the Council, wrote:
"... And out of Italy the Duke of Mantua's bastard, Alex. GONZAGA, offered to serve with 4,000 Italian footmen, and 300 mounted harquebuziers, upon two months warning. Has made a book of these names. 'As for the Italians, it is evil meddling with them, having had good experience this year to be either too wise or too false'."
[Calendar of State Papers, 35 Henry VIII, 1543, fo.385, p.210.]
I would be very surprised if CASTIGLIONE's name was not in WALLOP's book, & perhaps, despite WALLOP's mistrust of Italians, near the top of the list.
GIOVANNI GOES TO ENGLAND.
In the following year, 1544, Henry VIII personally attended his troops outside Boulogne, then under English siege.
CASTIGLIONE also presented himself at Boulogne after wintering in Calais, centre of the then English Pale in France. Recommended by those about the King, Giovanni was given letters of introduction to the Council in London, where he was attached to the court of Henry's younger daughter Elizabeth, the BOLEYN daughter. The nod of approval, it appears, may have come from the King himself. The date was about October 1544.
Some of this detail is gleaned from an informed, but perhaps somewhat biased family source - Giovanni's eldest son & heir, Sir Francis CASTILLION, wrote a memorial, dated 24 Sep 1631, which he intended to inscribe on his father's sepulchre in Spene Church, near Newbury, in Berkshire (see full version further below):
"In this monument resteth Baptist CASTILION, Esq're, who was in the Warres at Landerse; then served Henry VIII at Bullen, captayne of foot. Being there recommended by some about the King, was sent over with letters, unto the Private Counsil in England; to preferre him unto the Lady Elizabeth's Grace, daughter unto King Henry the 8th; chiefly to read the Italian, being then 13 years of age..."
[Francis CASTILLION, his Letterbook, Osborne Shelves, Beinecke Rare Book & MS Library, Yale University.]
Given that Elizabeth, who had actually only just turned 11, was then only 3rd in line of succession, & that she had a brother who might reasonably be expected, despite early signs of a "weakling" disposition, to produce heirs of his own, the posting cannot have filled Giovanni with any great prospects for advancement. On my presumption that it was a move he probably sought & volunteered for, it suggests he may have been quite keen to escape Europe, & perhaps more particularly the Catholic country of his birth. Some historians have indeed assumed that he was a Protestant.
But events were to transpire in such a way that saw Giovanni become a close court insider, & eventually an established member of the English propertied class; and by the time of his death, in 1598, he had become one of the oldest & longest serving of all of Queen Elizabeth's personal attendants.
Information concerning Giovanni's movements before his marriage in 1558 are hard to come by. It is likely that he will not have strayed too far from the side of his mistress, Elizabeth. One of the cards up his sleeve was his military experience, and if, as seems likely (and mooted by some historians as a fact), he was also charged with Elizabeth's personal safety as one of her personal body-guards, then that proximity will have been almost absolute.
And if so, his movements will be hers, and hers are well documented.
These can be summarised within three divisions of time - the remainder of her father Henry's reign, which ended in Jan 1547; the reign of her younger & Protestant half-brother Edward, which ended in Jul 1553; & the reign of their elder & Catholic half-sister Mary, which ended in Nov 1558, some months after Giovanni's marriage.
GIOVANNI, UNDER HENRY VIII.
Before Giovanni's arrival from Boulogne in 1544, Elizabeth had offended her father, yet again, & was banished from his presence; but in the following year, she was placed under the direct charge of her step-mother, Queen Catherine PARR, who turned the King around, allowing Elizabeth to be brought back to Court.
Over the next 2 years, as was the habit of the Royal Courts, for one reason amongst others, to keep one breath of fresh air ahead of the mouldering latrines, Elizabeth was moved from Palace to Palace.
HIBBERT noted that Elizabeth's own household:
"... moved at irregular intervals from Windsor to Enfield, from Richmond to Greenwich, Hatfield to Eltham, Hunsdon to Rickmansworth, Ashridge to Havering..."
[Christopher HIBBERT. "The Virgin Queen - The Personal History of Elizabeth I." Viking Press, 1990, p.27.]
GIOVANNI, UNDER EDWARD VI.
Edward was fetched from Ashford to be with Elizabeth at Enfield where she was residing, when they were there given the news of their father's death. She continued in the care of her step-mother, in the Queen Dowager's house in Chelsea.
Thereafter, at Hanworth, Elizabeth suffered the previously mentioned advances of the Lord Admiral, Thomas SEYMOUR. She left this household in May 1548, citing a disagreement with her step-mother, but it seems that Catherine, by now 6 months pregnant to SEYMOUR, to whom she had been secretly married, had caught Elizabeth in SEYMOUR's embrace, & was probably protecting both her & her step-daughter's interests. Elizabeth was sent to Cheshunt under the watchful eye of Sir Anthony DENNY.
And in Jan 1549, SEYMOUR was arrested, & imprisoned, along with 3 of Elizabeth's personal staff, including Kath ASHLEY & Thomas PARRY. I do not yet know whether CASTIGLIONE was the 3rd (see below), but it is a possibility. ASHLEY acknowledged "familiarities" between SEYMOUR & Elizabeth. SEYMOUR, convicted on a charge of Treason, was executed.
By Sep 1549, Elizabeth was still at Hatford, when PARRY informed CECIL that Elizabeth "... will not yet remove to Ashridge."
And on 17 Mar 1550, Elizabeth visited her brother in London:
"... with a large retinue. Her entourage on outings often numbered nearly 200. She was most honourably received by the Council in Jan 1551."
[Christopher HIBBERT. Op. Cit., p.35.]
GIOVANNI, UNDER MARY & PHILIP.
On the death of Edward, the Dukes of Suffolk & Northumberland attempted to forestall the accession of the Catholic Mary by proclaiming as Queen the Lady Jane GREY, their respective daughter & daughter-in-law. Their strategy to bring Elizabeth & Mary together in London, where they might be more easily "managed," failed, presumably as the result of secret messengers dispatched by CECIL. Elizabeth locked herself in her apartments at Hatfield; Mary decamped to the fortified stronghold of Framlingham Castle, where thousands of her supporters gathered. The conspiracy collapsed, & 8 days after Edward's death, Mary was proclaimed Queen.
Elizabeth, at her favourite residence at Hatfield, went up to London after the defeat of Northumberland's coup, & after spending several nights at Somerset House, then Wanstead House, near Aldgate, made the ceremonious entry into London with her sister on 3 Aug 1553. She also played a part in the Coronation ceremonies on 1 Oct.
But thereafter, & at her own request after being, by Mary's decree, upstaged in rank by the Duchess of Suffolk & the Countess of Lennox, Elizabeth removed to Ashridge.
After the failure of yet another attempt on Mary's throne in Jan-Feb 1554, known as the WYATT rebellion, the Council was advised that Elizabeth was implicated, with the French King's Ambassador NOAILLES, concerning opposition to the impending marriage of Mary to Philip of Spain - the "Spanish Marriage" widely but privately feared & condemned in England. WYATT himself was probably behind the message sent to Elizabeth at Ashridge, urging her to move to Donnington & fortify it. Sensing the need for caution, she refused to see the messenger & had him sent away.
Before WYATT was defeated, Elizabeth was summonsed to London. Once again, sensing that great caution was needed, & fearing for her safety in London, she pleaded illness; whereupon her great-uncle Lord William HOWARD & two of the Queen's doctors were sent to Ashridge to investigate; she was brought to London in slow stages, taking 5 days to reach Highgate, & entered London streets on 23 Feb. After being confined in Whitehall Palace for 3 weeks, & denied access to Mary, she made her indignant entry through Traitor's Gate into the Tower of London on 17 Mar. CASTIGLIONE may have been one of the two male servants allowed to accompany her there, along with 6 of her ladies, although it seems more likely he remained outside, & was then arrested on suspicion of carrying Elizabeth's letters from within (see below).
On 19 May 1554, Elizabeth was released into the care of Sir Henry BEDINGFIELD, at Woodstock, near Oxford; the route there was by boat to Richmond, then by horse & litter through Windsor, West Wycombe & Rycote. There she complained bitterly about the quality of her lodgings, in the gate-house, but was allowed to re-assemble her household, despite careful screening at which she further complained. And there she remained until Apr 1555.
In the meantime, Mary had married Philip in Jul 1554; and she had begun burning Protestants in Feb 1555 - the number eventually totalled nearly 300, including bishops, clerics, artisans & agricultural labourers, and amongst which number some 60 were women - and these burnings revulsed the general population, with the result that Catholicism itself became hated in England.
Elizabeth was then returned to Hampton Court, still under close confinement (and in the gate-house), to meet her new brother-in-law, Philip of Spain.
In Oct 1555, she & her household were again moved, to Hatfield, under the care of her "gaoler," Sir Thomas POPE, with the rules governing her freedom eased at the request of Philip, as he headed off to his European Kingdoms, perhaps aware his wife was ailing & needing to keep Elizabeth on-side.
POPE's controls were further eased, & Elizabeth was returned to Court in time for Philip's return to London in late Mar 1557. Mary visited her at Hatfield in April. Later that month, another feeble attempt on Mary's throne failed, at Scarborough Castle, & the perpetrator, named STAFFORD, was executed. Because of the rebellion's origins in France, Mary declared war, only to lose Calais, which had been under English control for over 2 centuries!
Elizabeth was visiting Brockett Hall, Herts, 8 Nov 1558, when Mary, almost at the last hour, finally signified that Elizabeth should succeed her. Mary died on 17 Nov, & Elizabeth went up to London, from Hatfield, on 23 Nov.
GIOVANNI IN THE TOWER OF LONDON.
Very little mention is made in the published histories of Giovanni CASTIGLIONE during this period. The sole exception is the several times he was, as the Italian Master, incarcerated in the Tower of London.
And even here, concerning the actual number of times that Giovanni was sent to the Tower, most modern historians seem to know less than the then Venetian Ambassador in London, Giovanni MICHIEL, who on 2 Jun 1556, wrote to his Doge:
"The number of persons imprisoned increases daily...Two days later Mistress ASHLEY was taken thither, she being the chief governess of Milady Elizabeth, the arrest, together with that of three other domestics, having taken place in the country, 18 miles hence, even in the aforesaid Milady's house, & where at present she resides, which has caused great general vexation. Amongst the domestics is a certain Battista, an Italian, native of Piedmont, the Signora's master for the Italian tongue, & who has twice before been imprisoned on her account, he being much suspected on the score of religion, as is likewise the governess and all the others. I am told that they have already confessed to having known about the conspiracy; so not having revealed it, were there nothing else against them, they may probably not quit the Tower alive..."
[Calendar of State Papers, Venetian Series.]
Well, we do have reason to be thankful that he got the last bit wrong! And we will deal with this, the third incarceration, a little further on.
Giovanni's three incarcerations in the Tower become apparent from other published references.
The first, & least publicised, was in 1554, probably as a result of the WYATT Rebellion. Alison WEIR ["Children of England: The Heirs of King Henry VIII," Jonathan Cape, London, 1996] wrote that CASTIGLIONE had been imprisoned in 1554 on suspicion of having distributed subversive literature, although she may have confused the cause with another charge to follow about a year later.
Giovanni's descendants had a different, & perhaps more appropriate view as to the reason. His son & heir, Sir Frances CASTILLION, wrote in 1631:
"... But in the 1st of Queene Mary, for trusty service then done by him, touching her Grace's safety, then a Prisoner, he was committed close prisoner to the Tower of London. And being twice out of prison a few weeks, the lady Elizabeth writ letters secretly to him, all of her owne hand; to goe unto the French Ambassador, and King Phillip's confessor, at Whitehall; with other her letters, late in the night, about her Grace's troubles, whereof he was strictly examined in the Tower, by Bishop GARDENER, then Lord Chancellor - Suffered on the Racke to confesse his trust therein, being Lame thereof: but he would make no confession, whereby the Lady Elizabeth may come in danger of being wrongfully accused about WIATT's Rebellion, as the chronicles maketh mention..."
[Francis CASTILLION. His Letterbook, Op. Cit.]
The 1st of Queen Mary's reign, was, of course, 1553-54, so the timing is right for the WYATT Rebellion. But we are not dealing just with subversive literature here.
Anne SOMERSET ["Elizabeth I," Wedenfeld & Nicolson, London, 1991] noted a similar charge concerning subversive literature attached to his imprisonment in May 1555. In this case, MICHIEL also proved to have been well informed, writing on 13 May 1555:
"Certain knaves in this country endeavour daily to disturb the peace & quiet & present state of the kingdom, so as if possible to induce some novelty & insurrection, there having been privily circulated of late throughout the city a 'Dialogue,' written & printed in English, full of seditious & scandalous things against the religion & government, as also against the council, the Parliament, & chiefly against their Majesties' persons; & although all diligence has been used for the discovery of the authors, no light on the subject has yet been obtained, save that an Italian has been put in the Tower, he being a master for teaching the Italian tongue to Milady Elizabeth, some suspicion having been apparently entertained of him..."
[Calender of State Papers, Venetian Series.]
His third incarceration was in mid 1556, when his interrogatories, with answers attached, were submitted to Council in a report dated 31 May 1556:
"Question: What bills or letters have you since Christmas written to any person now beyond the seas & to what effect?
Answer: To Mistress WILLIAMS, concerning money I sent for her.
"Q: From what persons now beyond the seas have you received any letter or bill since Christmas, of what effect, & by whom you received or sent any?
A: Of the same to the same effect, I received & sent by a young man I know not.
"Q: How often have you been to London since Christmas, & what places did you most resort to?
A: Once. Where I resorted I remember not well; but to a milliner's shop where I bought a cap, gloves, a girdle, [to] a hosier & a bookbinder; & in Marke lane to a friend, Mistress WATTSON, to look how she did, & in that lane to Mistress BURNELL, where I lay all night; in Seething lane to my countryman John d'ANTONIO to buy strings for my lady grace's lute. What communications I cannot well tell.
"Q: Whether & how often you have resorted to the French & the Venetian ambassadors, by night or day, since Christmas, upon what occasion, & what talk you had with them? How often have you sent to any of their secretaries or clerks, & what messages or letters have you received from them, by whom, & to what effect?
A: I never resorted to or spoke to any of them.
"I forgot in (3) I was with Laurence SHEREVE the grocer, to whom I paid money I owed him for one of my fellows; also I was in Bucklersbury to buy a box of turpentine for the disease of my back; also I was with a silk-woman at Ludgate where I bought black lace to edge a cloak, & at St Martin's [le Grande] for two dozen buttons; in Cheapside for sarsanet; in another place for points; at Foster lane end I bought two pairs of wandone gloves. I had no talk but about my business."
[Calendar of State Papers, Mary I, Domestic Series, 1556; reprinted 1998.]
I am entirely unclear from any published source as to what this interrogation was actually about.
This extract does reveal, however, that it was an earlier incarceration that had led to his "disease" of the back, if that disease was, as is believed, induced by his experience on the Rack. And here too, was another ace up his sleeve - a knack with musical instruments - and I daresay he was also skilled in the Italian style of dancing, said to have been high, which was a favourite style with Elizabeth. But that was for a happier time.
It was during this last period of incarceration that Giovanni was confined in the Broad Arrow Tower, where, in an upper room, immediately to the left of the fireplace, he left his mark in the stonework, in a graffito still clearly visible today:
"Inqueste vanita ch'ogn'un desia noponer tua speranza ma sicuro scorgi il camin ch'al sommo ben t'ivia - Giovanni Battista CASTIGLIONE - 1556."
This has been translated as:
"Do not rest your hopes on these vain things that all men desire, but follow the sure road which leads to the highest good."
[Tower Inscriptions, The Royal Armouries Library, Tower of London, p. 17.]
There are several other references to Giovanni in the historical record for this period.
On 27 Jun 1548, the Privy Council (Acts) warranted Sir Wimund CAREWE "to be delivered to Thomas SMYTH, Clerk of the Council, £5 given to John BAPTISTA, Italian, for rewarde..." Giovanni was several times incorrectly referred to in State Paper MSs as Giovanni BATTISTA, "Castilian."
And on 29 Oct 1550, John Baptist CASTIGLIONE was granted his Patent of Denization "...(complete)... by the Lord Chancellor, by virtue of the King's warrant, for nil payable, by mandate of the Lord Chancellor."
Giovanni Battista CASTIGLIONE was married in London in Feb 1558, to the widow Margarett ALLEN. See below
From this point onwards, & the more so after Queen Mary's death, 9 months later, CASTIGLIONE's situation evidently became more calm, probably more secure, & certainly more prosperous.
GIOVANNI, UNDER QUEEN ELIZABETH.
On Elizabeth's accession, he was appointed a Groom of her Privy Chamber. His proximity to her court in the previous 14 years made him an obvious contender for the top of the pecking order, if there was one, amongst grooms, which numbered six at her coronation, & doubled to 12 by 1580.
At least one descendant has pondered on Giovanni's appointment as perhaps being a move by Elizabeth to keep him on the inside, lest his knowledge of her affairs might prove a problem if he was on the outer. But I suspect her trust in him went well beyond that, & not without good reason.
As to his exact whereabouts, the official records remain mostly silent. That he had two children baptised at the Parish Church of St-Martin-in-the-Fields in May 1561 & Jan 1563 suggests their residence was towards that end of the Palace complex at Whitehall. By Feb 1765, they appear to have moved, as their next child, & subsequent children, were all baptised at St Margaret's, Westminster.
In 1583, we find John Baptist CASTILLION, Esq, of Westminster, in the registration of his son Valentine's admission to the Middle Temple. And in Nov 1587, there is reference, in the Calendar of Patent Rolls, to "... the now dwelling house of the said John BAPTISTE, being in Kinge's street in the City of Westminster."
King's St passed through the gates of Whitehall Palace; these gates, built in 1532, & demolished in 1723, stood south of the Holbein Gate.
And Giovanni is occasionally referred to in State Papers by this alias, at least once being recorded to as John BAPTIST, "Castilian."
On 28 Jan 1559, Giovanni was granted for life, for his services, the offices of Bailiff, Woodward & Steward of the Manor of Benham Valence, Co Berks, & keeper of the Park, & keeper of the mansion, with wages of 40s. a year for the offices & 2d. a day each for the keeperships.
Six years later, on 13 Jan 1565, Giovanni was granted the Manor itself:
"... the Manor of Benham Valence, late parcel of the lands granted to the Queen for her maintenance before her accession & formerly of William ESSEX, Knt, lands, etc... & all other appurtenances of the said Manor in Spene, Benham Valence & Westbroke, Co Berks. To hold as the Manor of Estgrenewiche in socage & by a yearly rent of £14 3s. & 2d. For CASTIGLIONE's service. By Q." [Calendar of Patent Rolls, Elizabeth.]
Giovanni appears to have settled upon this establishment as his principal residence outside of London, & was to be buried near there 33 years later.
On 15 Sep 1569, Giovanni was granted the:
"Lease, for 21 years, of the Manor of Snave & all the lands, courts, advowsons & other appurtenances thereof, of Snave, Langbete, Warehome, Ivechurch & elsewhere, in County Kent, late of Thomas WYATT, Knt, attainted, with reservations, from the termination of a grant thereof by Patent 27 Feb ii & iii Ph & Mary to Anne, Duchess of Somerset; yearly rent £27 15s. & 6d. For his services. By P.S."
In Apr 1572, he was additionally granted the Lease of the Manor of Porlocke, Co Somerset (late the Duke of Suffolk's, attainted for treason), & lands in Shete in Petersfield, Co Southampton, for 31 years, at a yearly rental of 14s., again for his service.
HIBBERT noted that Elizabeth's household staff settled down to:
"... no more than 3 gentlemen of the Privy Chamber, less than 10 grooms, 7 married ladies of high rank, 4 of lesser rank known as the Queen's Women, & 6 maids in waiting, usually girls."
He also observed that Elizabeth kept several of the estates forfeited by traitors, and:
"... bestowing others on courtiers whom she found more accommodating & agreeable." [Christopher HIBBERT. "Virgin Queen." Op.Cit. Pp. 104 & 118.]
In Mar 1565, CASTIGLIONE was involved in securing armaments for an English Army under Robert DUDLEY, Earl of Leicester. Thomaso BARONCELLI wrote to DUDLEY from Antwerp concerning 2 suits of armour for a man & one for a horse, fashioned by Helisio LIBERTES (an accomplished Florentine engraver) which he sends with LIBERTES, & a dagger of "... exquisite workmanship worthy of the Queen's inspection. [BARONCELLI] has been informed by Gio. Baptista CASTIGLIONE of her wishes in these matters... [LIBERTES has brought over] some drawings as was intimated by the writer, from the Earl through Giobattista CASTIGLIONE," & the Earl's arquebus.
By Jan 1566, some 600 acres of riverside land in the Parishes of Erith & Plumstead, Co Kent, had been reclaimed from inundation by the River Thames. The work, under license of Queen Elizabeth dated 10 Mar 1562, guaranteed rights to half the reclaimed lands to Jacopo ACONCIO, an Italian jurist, philosopher & engineer, who arrived in England in 1559, & began reclamation work in Jun 1562. Some of the reclaimed lands were lost, whence ACONCIO entered into a partnership with G.B. CASTIGLIONE & some English tradesmen to make further efforts. Apparently Giovanni & some London businessmen guaranteed losses up to £5,000, which money was not recouped for another 8 years.
ACONCIO & CASTIGLIONE were said to have been in accord regarding questions of religion - in other words, refugees "conscientae causa," or Protestants. ACONCIO died about 1567, leaving his manuscripts in Giovanni's care - and he published one of them, "Una essortazione al timor di Dio," in 1580, with a dedication to Queen Elizabeth.
On 26 May 1568, Giovanni wrote from Westminster to Lord COBHAM, concerning a proposed match between Queen Elizabeth & Charles, Archduke of the Holy Roman Empire:
"...on Wednesday evening after prayers, Mr NORTH had a long conversation with Her Majesty, who called him into the private chamber issuing out of the oratory. Her Majesty, after having seen the likeness of the Archduke, gave orders to have it put into a frame, which was done, but as yet she does not wish it to be seen, 'fearing no doubt lest it's beauty should dazzle the minds & sight of others'."
[Salisbury MSs, Part I, p.356, #1173.]
This was undoubtedly connected with several of CECIL's letters to COBHAM (then Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports), of similar date, one mentioning a letter to COBHAM which CECIL had opened after being "... moved thereto by Mr BAPTIST"; the other referring to the possibility of Mr BAPTISTA being "... with you shortly,to pass secretly over" perhaps on his way to Europe in connection with this proposed marriage.
As with all the other prospective suits for Elizabeth's hand, this also came to nothing.
In Nov 1568, Giovanni is first noted in connection with the Advowson of the Rectory of Godalming, Co Surrey, with an annuity arising from it of £20 a year, & of which:
"... he had a demise for a term of years from the Dean of Salisbury."
[COCKAYNE. "Pedigree of Castillion." The Genealogist, N.S. Vol XVII, London, 1901. P.202.]
In 1578, a dispute arose over the appointment of a new Rector, Francis TAYLOR, & the availablity of the Rectory as a residence for him, still occupied by Richard SMITH, the former Rector GRAFTON's man. The patron, Sir William MORE, of Loseley, Surrey, became involved.
Giovanni wrote to MORE, 24 Oct 1578:
"... touching his claim to the rectory house at Godalming, to the vicarage of which parish he has appointed Mr TAYLOR. 'Now for that I understand Mr TAYLOR is not resident,' says Mr CASTILLION, 'at Godalming for lack of a house, I will be contented to lend him so much of that I have of Mr SMYTH as shall serve his turn for the time... As my mind is not to offer Mr TAYLOR or to any man else any wrong, so I hope that my Lord [Bishop] WINCHESTER nor the Deane of Sarum, nor the town of Godalming will offer me none also, but if they do, I must defend myself as well as I can."
Giovanni retained the Advowson, which he granted to his 3rd son Peter on his marriage, in about 1595, to Thomasine PEYTON; it was eventually inherited by Giovanni's Irish-born grandson, Peyton CASTILLION.
On 15 May 1583, John Baptist CASTILLION Esq, & his wife Margaret, "...widow of Lazarus ALLEN," were involved in a legal disputation against Sir Christopher ALLEN & Roger GRAVES, "... concerning an annuity of £20 out of the estates in Lincs, Notts, Yorks, Kent & Herefords, of Sir John ALLEN, late Alderman of London."
[Index to the Supreme Court of Judicature, Chancery Division, Six Clerks Office & Successors Decree Rolls, First Division, xxv Elizabeth.]
Sir Christopher was the elder brother of Lazarus ALLEN, both illegitimate sons of Sir John ALLEN, Mercer & Alderman of London, P.C., & twice Lord Mayor of London.
In Jan 1593, Giovanni was involved in matters relating to the estate of John Baptist PIATINARI, a native of Pinaro in Piemonte, Physician, who died suddenly in London ca 1590, leaving goods to the value of £1,500-1,600. Another Italian, & a stranger to the deceased, had siezed the goods, but later, in remorse, had issued a decree calling on PIATINARIs' relations & such to make their claims upon the property. CASTIGLIONE, who "...has been a true friend to his compatriots in England, then sent to Calais to see if Anthoine JACOMEL, President of Calais, were still alive, who was cousin german to the deceased; who at once sent CASTILLION a proxy to act for him on behalf of his children the heirs."
John Baptist CASTILIAN, "Esq, a Gentleman of the Queen's Privy Chamber," was admitted to the Middle Temple, 12 Aug 1595. But it appears unlikely that he was ever a Gentleman of that Chamber.
Giovanni's widow Margaret continued to live in or near Benham Valence, Berkshire, after his death; her will was dated 22 Jun 1621, of Speen, Widow, & proved in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, 2 Nov 1622 (103 Saville), by her grandson Peyton CASTILLION, her sole executor, to whom "... all my stock & goods without the house," the rest, "... my household stuffe," going to her son Sir Frances, with whom she appears to have had an estrangement.
GIOVANNI MARRIES & HAS A FAMILY.
Giovanni Battista CASTIGLIONE was married in the Parish Church of St Christopher-le-Stocks, London, by Andrew ARNEM, Rector, on 11 Feb 1558, to Margarett ALLEN. She was the widow of Lazarus ALLEN (natural son of Sir John ALLEN, P.C., Lord Mayor of London, & after his death, ward of Sir William PAGET, Principal Secretary to Henry VIII), & the natural daughter of Florentine Merchant Stranger in London, Bartolomeo COMPAGNI (see another posting in this blog).
Giovanni & Margaret had issue:
1. Fraunciscus CASTELLION, bt St Martin-in-the-Fields, London, 27 May 1561; served in the retinue of Robert DUDLEY, Queen Elizabeth's much favoured Earl of Leicester; a member of DUDLEY's household in the Netherlands; led DUDLEY's horse at his funeral:
Heir to his father's estate of Benham Valence, Berks; M.A., Magdalen College, Oxon, 1581; M.P. for Great Bedwin; created Knight at Charterhouse, 11 May 1603; adm Middle Temple, 14 Aug 1606; marr 1stly, Norton, Hants, 16 Sep 1595, Elizabeth ST JOHN (daur of William ST JOHN of Farley, Southampton, by Barbara GORE); she died in childbirth, 28 Dec 1603, aged 27.
Sir Francis married 2ndly, St Matthew Friday St, London, 17 Dec 1606, Alice CALTON, widow of John JAMES of London, and of William MARSHAM of Essex; she probably died in 1612.
Sir Frances & Elizabeth had issue:
a. Barbara CASTILLION, born Apeldorcombe, Isle of Wight, 14 Sep 1597; married at Spene Church, 4 May 1625, Anthony SPIER of Holcombe Grange, Oxfordshire; he died in 1644; issue 3 daughters - Margaret SPIER, the wife of William SELLON; Barbara SPIER; & Mary SPIER (bt Spene Church, 20 Jun 1636).
b. Elizabeth CASTILLION, bapt Spene Church, 28 Aug 1602; marr at Spene Church, 10 Sep 1635, Nicholas LAMY, a French Physician, of Basingstoke; issue 2 daurs - Elizabeth LAMY (bt Buxted, Sussex, 8 Aug 1641); & Joan LAMY (bt Buxted, 14 Jan 1643).
c. Thomas CASTILLION, bapt Spene Church, 29 Dec 1603, the day after his mother's death; adm Middle Temple, 1623; of Benham Valence; will dated Feb 1654, pr P.C.C., Apr 1656; marr 10 Jul 1632, Elizabeth NELSON (daur of Thomas NELSON of Chaddlesworth, Berkshire, by Mary DUCKETT); issue - Francis CASTILLION, bt Spene, 28 Aug 1633, Rector of Welton-le-Wold, Lincs, marr Margaret BARKER with issue; Thomas CASTILLION, bt Chaddlesworth, 24 Aug 1635, living 1664; Humphrey CASTILLION, bt Chaddlesworth, 1 Nov 1637, Citizen & Apothecary of London, will dated Sep 1664 & proved May 1669; Peter CASTILLION, bt Chaddlesworth, 17 Feb 1639, Vicar of Dinton, Wilts, marr Alice with issue; John CASTILLION, bt Chaddlesworth, 14 Mar 1641, Mrchant of London, living Jul 1664; Valentine CASTILLION, bt Chaddlesworth, 19 Jul 1646, Citizen & Grocer of London, living 1679; Mary CASTILLION, bt Chaddlesworth, 27 Dec 1648, marr London, 26 Feb 1673, Miles ARNOLD, with issue; Richard CASTILLION, bt Chaddlesworth, 29 Feb 1651, Citizen & Distiller of London, will dated Jun 1679, proved Jul 1679.
2. Katherina CASTELION, bt St Martin-in-the-Fields, 2 Jan 1563; bur St Margaret's Westminster, 10 Apr 1581.
3. Valentini CASTILION, bt St Margaret's, Westminster, 17 Feb 1565; adm Magdalen Coll, Oxon, Nov 1581; adm Middle Temple, Oct 1583; of Godalming, Surrey; will dated 16 Sep 1640 & pr 3 Nov 1641; marr 1stly, Miss CALTON, 2ndly, 30 Nov 1607, Eleanor PYATT, & 3rdly Mary, his widow.
4. Elyzabethe CASTILION, bt St Margaret's, 5 Mar 1566; probably died an infant.
5. Elizabethe CASTILION, bt St Margaret's, 7 Mar 1567; marr 30 Nov 1587, Peter LEIGH of High Leigh, West Hall, Cheshire, with issue 3 sons & 12 daurs, including:
a. Richard LEIGH, died young.
b. Peter LEIGH, born 5 Dec 1594, 2nd son; died 1657; marr 8 Sep 1614, Mary TIPPING, with issue - Peter LEIGH, b 30 Apr 1615, died unm; Richard LEIGH, died 12 Aug 1670, s.p.; Thomas LEIGH, of West Hall, High Leigh, buried 22 Jun 1767, marr 1660, Mary AUSTIN; Samuel LEIGH; Edmund LEIGH; William LEIGH; James LEIGH; & Elizabeth LEIGH.c. Anne (II) LEIGH, b ca 1606; marr Thomas COOPER of Ewborne.
d. Elizabeth (II) LEIGH, b ca 1612; marr Rev Nathaniel LANCASTER, Rector of Tarperley, Cheshire; he died 9 Jan 1661; issue.
e. Frances LEIGH, b ca 1614; marr William EDWARDS of Chester.
f. Christian LEIGH; marr Thomas BATE, M.D.
6. Anne CASTILION, bt St Margaret's, 11 May 1658; marr Robert HYDE (died 1642 - uncle of the 1st Earl of Clarendon, father-in-law of King James II & VII), of West Hatch, Tisbury, Wiltshire, with issue 6 sons & 4 daurs, including - Robert HYDE, eldest son; Lawrence HYDE, 2nd son; Henry HYDE, 3rd son; Hamlet HYDE, 4th son; Valentine HYDE; Margaret HYDE; Ann HYDE; Elizabeth HYDE, bapt Salisbury Cathedral, 8 Jun 1595.7.
7. Peter CASTYLYON, bt St Margaret's, 25 Nov 1569; a Captain in Queen Elizabeth's Army in Ireland; probably died at Moyry Pass, Ireland's "Gap of the North," 5 Oct 1600; marr ca 1595, Thomasine, daur of Christopher PEYTON (died Dublin, 1612), Auditor in Ireland, by his 1st wife Anne PALMER; issue - a son, Peyton CASTILLION; & a daur Catherine CASTILLION, the wife of Sir William GILBERT of Kilminchey, Queen's Co, Ireland.
[The old Abbey burial ground on Faughart Hill, on the side of which MOUNTJOY's army camped in Sep-Oct 1600; almost certainly where Capt Peter CASTILLION would have been buried if he died there on 5 Oct.]
Peter's widow Thomasin married 2ndly, ca 1603, to Sir Robert PIGOTT of Dysart, Queen's Co (widower of Anne ST LEGER, who died Apr 1599 - see his separate blog), by which 2nd marriage they both added further issue to their families.
Catherine GILBERT's daur Anne GILBERT became the wife of Sir Robert's grandson & heir apparent, Robert PIGOTT (killed at Fort Maryborough, Sep 1646, son of Sir Robert's heir John PIGOTT of Dysart, by Martha COLCLOUGH - see his separate blog), & by him ancestor of the continuing line of PIGOTTs of Dysart, including Captain John PIGOTT of Antigua, Dublin & Stradbally (see his separate blog).
8. Walter Baptyste CASTILYON, bt St Margaret's, 24 Dec 1570; slain in Ireland, probably before 1597, in the service of Sir Richard BINGHAM.
9. Douglasse CASTILION, bt St Margaret's, 3 Jun 1573; M.A. Oxon, 1599; Fellow of Magdalen College; Rector of Stratford Tony, Wilts, 1619; died 18 Jan 1659; marr Salisbury Cathedral, 17 Apr 1611, Margaret BOWER, with issue 6 sons & 4 daurs, including:
a. Richard CASTILLION, bapt Stratford Toney, 27 Dec 1613; at Godalming, Surrey, 1697; marr St Martin-in-the-Fields, London, 16 Nov 1635, Katherine SPEIR; issue - Douglas CASTILLION, bt London, 1 Sep 1636, marr with issue; Katherine CASTILLION, bt Newington, Surrey, 18 Jun 1637, poss wife of Nicholas WILKINS; Richard CASTILLION, bt Godalming, 30 Jun 1642; Margaret CASTILLION, bt Godalming, 17 Nov 1647; Rodolph CASTILLION, bt Godalmimg, 29 Nov 1648, marr Frances with issue; Elizabeth CASTILLION, bt Godalming, 29 Jun 1651, probably marr John ELINGE; & John CASTILLION, bt Godalming, 27 Apr 1657.
b. John CASTILLION; marr St Mary Savoy, London, 27 Nov 1666, Margaret DIGGES; issue - Mary CASTILLION, bt Canterbury Cathedral, 16 Sep 1669; & Thomas CASTILLION, bt Canterbury Cathedral, 2 Nov 1671.
c. Anne CASTILLION; marr Edward DRAKE.
10. Barbara CASTILION, bt St Margaret's, 16 Sep 1574; died 24 Aug 1641 8 bur Salisbury Cathedral; marr Wiltshire, 7 Jun 1590, Laurence HYDE of Salisbury, Councillor, Middle Temple, a brother of Robert HYDE, his wife's brother-in-law; issue 17 children.
11. Selina CASTILION, bt St Margaret's, 29 Jan 1576; marr Robert CHENEY of Woodhey, Berks, with issue 2 sons & 2 daurs.
12. Henry Baptiste CASTILION, bt St Margaret's, 25 Jan 1580; marr Margaret, with issue 3 sons & 1 daur.
GIOVANNI'S DEATH & BURIAL.
John Baptist CASTILLION died 12 Feb 1597-98, probably in London, & was buried 17 Mar inside the Parish Church of St Mary, Spene, near Newbury, Berkshire. Burial was attended by his son & heir Francis CASTILLION as chief mourner; sons Valentine & Douglas (who bore the penant) CASTILLION & John LEIGH as assistant mourners; Dr HARDING the preacher; William CAMDEN, Clarenceaux, bearing the Coat-of-Arms; & Samuel THOMPSON, Portcullis, bearing the Helmet & Crest. He was laid to rest in the family aisle, under an ornate altar tomb in the Italianate style of architecture, on which still lies his recumbent life-sized effigy, represented in armour, with a vest of chain mail under, hands pressed together in devotional attitude, his head resting on his helmet, ornamented with medallions bearing the Rose en Soleil, & the feet on his mutilated crest - A salamander's head Vert, issuing from flames & breathing flames, all Ppr.
On the ledge of the tomb is inscribed -"Hic jacet Jo Baptist CASTILLION Armiger Quondam Dominus de Benham in Comitatu Berk Qui obiit Xii Febr A Dni 1597." Around the side of the tomb are the family Coats-of-Arms & impalements of CASTIGLIONE:CAMPAGNI & their issue.
No will for Giovanni has yet been located in English records.
Giovanni's ornate tomb has since been relocated, and now stands adjacent to the south wall of the 1859 enlargement of the original church (see photo above), which was built annexed to the southern side; this area has now been set apart for use as a meeting & small concert area; the now smaller congregation being catered for back in the original part of the church, due east of the spire.
[Francis CASTILLION, his Letterbook - Osborne Shelves, Beinecke Rare Book & MS Library, Yale University.]
CASTIGLIONE ORIGINS IN ITALY - OLONA IN VARESE, LOMBARDIA.
Giovanni's ancestral origins take him back to the Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne (742-814), whose gtx4-grandson was Corrado (or Conrad), the son of Berenguar II (joint King of Italy, 950-961) by his wife Willa (daur of Boso, Marchese di Toscana & Count of Arles).
Corrado was the 1st Lord of Castiglione, and established his seat at Olona, ca 1000; this fortified dwelling overlooked the Olona River, about 18 km S.S.W of Como, and just to the south of the present town of Castiglione Olona.
The estate was destoyed by Ottone VISCONTI in 1280, when Corrado's gtx4 grandson Guido (II) was in occupation, his father Corrado (II) having died in that same year.
It was not rebuilt again until the early 1400s, by Cristoforo CASTIGLIONE (1345-1425).
Image courtesy of the www.comune.castiglione-olona.va.it web-site.]
CASATICO, NEAR MANTOVA, LOMBARDIA.
Cristoforo CASTIGLIONE was a renowned lawyer in Milano & Parma; he married Antonia di BAGGI, & by her had a son Baldassar CASTIGLIONE, born 14 Jan 1414, & died in 1478, having married Pollisena LISCA, and by her dowry purchased an extensive estate at Casatico, about 19 km due west of Mantua, where he constructed another stately CASTIGLIONE mansion, most of which still exists today.
GASSINO, NEAR TORINO, PIEMONTE.
Baldassar & Polissena had a younger son Baldassare (II) CASTIGLIONE, who was father, by his wife Katherina (daur of the Marchese di Malaspina) of Piero CASTIGLIONE, a Captain in the Army of Maximillian, Holy Roman Emperor, & who established himself at Castiglione Alto, near Gassino, in Piemonte, where our Giovanni Battista was probably born, ca 1516.