Appleyard Family History Library

KETT'S REBELLION: The Norfolk Rising of I549

KETT'S REBELLION: The Norfolk Rising of I549 by Stephen K. Land

Page 43: In 1549 Robert Kett was some fifty-seven years old and a man of extensive property in the Wymondham area. He was married, probably to Alice Appleyard, daughter of another local landowner, and was father of four, or perhaps five, sons. He was himself the fourth of the five sons of Thomas Kett of Forncett who had died in 1536. Two, and possibly three, of his brothers were dead by 1549, but William, the eldest, was living. William Kett, Robert's senior by some seven years, is described as a "butcher" - which means a grazier rather than a purveyor of meat - and as a mercer. He may well have owned a mercer's shop in Wymondham, but he was, no less than his brother, primarily a wealthy gentleman farmer. He may in fact have been the wealthier of the two, for he was the elder and had inherited the portion of at least one of their deceased brothers.

Descendants of Thomas Kett: This outline descendant chart shows the close relationship between the Appleyard and Kett families.

1 Thomas Kett b: 1460 in Forncett d: 1536   The Ketts of Norfolk - 11.95  
.. +Margery Wadker d: 1549
........ 2 Robert Kett b: 1492 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 07 Dec 1549
............ +Alice Appleyard b: 1493 in Bracon Ash, Norfolk
................... 3 William Kett b: 1515 in Wymondham, Norfolk
....................... +Anne Beckham
............................. 4 Richard Kett b: Abt. 1560 in Wymondham, Norfolk
................... *2nd Wife of William Kett:
....................... +Dorothy Brewer
............................. 4 Jeremy Kett b: in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1640
................................. +Elizabeth Appleyard b: 12 Dec 1562 in Dunston
................... 3 James Kett b: 1517 in Wymondham, Norfolk Robert Kett & The Norfolk Rising - 11.95
....................... +Agnes b: Abt. 1518 in Wymondham, Norfolk
............................. 4 John Kett b: 1539 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 15 Sep 1617
............................. 4 William Kett b: 1542 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1614
................................. +Agnes
........................................ 5 Robert Kett b: 1580 in Moulton, Norfolk
............................. 4 Robert Kett b: 1545 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: Jan 1582/83
................... 3 George Kett b: 1532 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1592
....................... +Frances b: Abt. 1553 in Wymondham, Norfolk
............................. 4 Robert Kett b: Abt. 1575 in Wymondham, Norfolk
................................. +Margaret Appleyard b: 03 Apr 1594 in Dunston
............................. 4 Richard Kett b: Abt. 1577 in Wymondham, Norfolk
................................. +Elizabeth Appleyard b: 17 Dec 1579 in Dunston
................... 3 Richard Kett b: 1534 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 28 Sep 1601
....................... +Margery Betts
................... 3 Loye Kett b: 1535 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1614
....................... +Elizabeth Witherley b: in Frammingham
............................. 4 Henry Kett b: Abt. 1560 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1611
................................. +Amy
........................................ 5 George Kett
........................................ 5 Henry Kett b: in Diss d: 1651
............................................ +Mary
.................................................. 6 John Kett
.................................................. 6 Henry Kett
.................................................. 6 Thomas Kett
.................................................. 6 Richard Kett
.................................................. 6 Mary Kett
........................................ 5 Richard Kett b: in Norwich
........................................ 5 Thomas Kett
............................. 4 Margaret Kett b: Abt. 1562 in Wymondham, Norfolk
................................. +Christopher Breeze
................... *2nd Wife of Loye Kett:
....................... +Elizabeth b: Abt. 1539
........ 2 William Kett b: 1485 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1549
............ +Joan
................... 3 Thomas Kett d: 1545
....................... +Unknown
............................. 4 Cassandra Kett b: 1531
............................. 4 Elizabeth Kett b: 1534
........ *2nd Wife of William Kett:
............ +Elizabeth
........ 2 Thomas Kett b: 1500 d: 1553
............ +Agnes
................... 3 Francis Kett b: Abt. 1547 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1589
................... 3 Valentine Kett b: Abt. 1530 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 10 Mar 1604/05
....................... +Alice b: Abt. 1534 in Wymondham, Norfolk
............................. 4 Anthony Kett b: Abt. 1556 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1561
............................. 4 Phillip Kett b: Abt. 1558 in Wymondham, Norfolk
............................. 4 Robert Kett b: Abt. 1560 in Wymondham, Norfolk
............................. 4 Frances Kett b: Abt. 1562 in Wymondham, Norfolk
................... 3 Thomas Kett b: 1535 in Wymondham, Norfolk d: 1612
................... 3 Adam Kett b: 1540 in Wymondham, Norfolk
....................... +Elizabeth d: 1634
............................. 4 Nicholas Kett
............................. 4 John Kett d: 1580
............................. 4 Stephen Kett
................................. +Ann Castleton
........................................ 5 Henry Kett
.................................................. 6 Richard Kett b: in Norwich & Roughton d: 1740
............................................................. 7 Henry Kett b: 1708 in Dickleburgh & Seething d: 1772
....................................................................... 8 Thomas Kett b: 1746 in Seething d: 1820
........................................................................... +Lucy Gurney
....................................................................... *2nd Wife of Thomas Kett:
........................................................................... +Hannah Gurney
.................................................................................. 9 George Samuel Kett
................... 3 Unknown Kett
................... 3 Unknown Kett
................... 3 Unknown Kett
................... 3 Unknown Kett
........ 2 John Kett b: Abt. 1488
........ 2 John Kett b: Abt. 1490
............ +Alice

Page 48 - 49: Blomefield suggests that by the time of the arrival at Mousehold, or soon afterwards, Kett also held Sergeant Gawdy, Sergeant Catlyn, and two brothers named Appleyard. Sergeant Gawdy was probably Thomas Gawdy who was Recorder of King's Lynn and Member of Parliament for Lynn in 1547, Member for Norwich in 1553, and appointed Recorder of Norwich in 1563. . . . . The brothers Appleyard were the two sons, John and Philip, of Roger Appleyard of Stanfield Hall who had died some twenty years before. Stanfield is only two miles from Wymondham, and it was there that Sergeant Flowerdew had resided during his depredation of Wymondham Abbey. The Appleyards were closely connected with Flowerdew, for their sister Frances had married his eldest son William, and perhaps for this reason the brothers were taken prisoner, perhaps on the very day that the rebels set out from Wymondham. They were not held captive for too long, for they took part in the defence of Norwich on July 21, although they may have been confined again when Kett took the city. The elder brother, John, inherited the family estates on the death of his mother in this same year, and embarked on a career somewhat complicated by the marriage, in the next year, of his half-sister Amy Robsart to Sir Robert Dudley.

Descendants of Roger Appleyard

1 Roger Appleyard b: 1506 in Bracon Ash, Norfolk d: 08 Jun 1528
.... +Elizabeth Scott b: 1504 in Camberwell, London d: 1549
........ 2 John Appleyard b: 24 Jan 1526/27 in East Dereham, Norfolk d: 1572
.............. +Elizabeth Hogan b: 1529 d: 1580
................... 3 Henry Appleyard b: 1551 in Bracken Ash, Norwich
........ 2 Philip Appleyard b: 1528 in Bracon Ash, Norfolk
.............. +Mary Shelton b: Abt. 1530 in Shelton, Norfolk
........ 2 Frances Appleyard b: 1524
.............. +William Drury b: Abt. 1520 in Bracon Ash, Norfolk
........ *2nd Husband of Frances Appleyard:
.............. +William Flowerdieu b: Abt. 1530 in Hethersett, Norfolk d: Abt. 1600
................... 3 Anthony Flowerdieu b: Abt. 1552 in Hetherset, Norfolk d: Abt. 1610
......................... +Martha Stanley b: 1570
............................. 4 Temperence Flowerdieu b: Abt. 1576 d: 1629
................................... +George Yeardley b: 28 Jul 1588 in Weston, Herts d: Dec 1626
........................................ 5 Argoll Yeardley b: 1619
.............................................. +Frances Knight b: in London
.................................................. 6 Rose Yeardley
.................................................. 6 Frances Yeardley
.................................................. 6 Argoll Yeardley
........................................ 5 Elizabeth Yeardley b: 1619 in Bruton Parish, Williamsburg, James City, Virginia
.............................................. +Joseph Burgess Croshaw b: 1610 in Bruton Parish, York County, Virginia
.................................................. 6 Mary Croshaw
........................................................ +White
............................................................. 7 Mary White b: in New Kent County, Virginia
................................................................... +George Smith
....................................................................... 8 Unity Smith
............................................................................. +Jerome Dumas b: 1681 in D'Antraigue, France
.................................................................................. 9 Benjamin Dumas b: 1705 in New Kent County, Virginia d: 02 Mar 1766
........................................................................................ +Frances Clark b: 1706 in New Kent County, Virginia d: 1752
............................................................................................. 10 Frances Clark b: 1740 in New Kent County, Virginia d: Abt. 1766
................................................................................................... +Francis Smith, Sr d: Bef. 26 Jan 1791
....................................................................................................... 11 Unity Smith b: in Anson County, North Carolina d: Dec 1831
............................................................................................................. +George Hammond b: 25 Feb 1751/52 in Richmond County, VA. d: 10 Apr 1840
.................................................. 6 Benjamin Croshaw b: 1640
........................................ 5 Frances Yeardley b: Bet. 1620 - 1627
............................. 4 Stanley Flowerdieu
............................. 4 Mary Flowerdieu
............................. 4 Unknown Flowerdieu
........ 2 Anna Appleyard b: 1525 in Bracon Ash, Norfolk
.............. +James Bigot b: Abt. 1524 in Bracon Ash, Norfolk
........ 2 Bridget Appleyard b: 1526 in Bracon Ash, Norfolk

Page 80: Other prisoners, however, appear to have gained their freedom and aided the city's defences: the help of Thomas Godsalve and the two
Appleyard brothers, all formerly captured by Kett, is recorded in the city Chamberlain's accounts for July 21. . . . . A gun was brought to the common
staithe yard and put in the charge of the Appleyard brothers.

Page 127 - 129: Amy's father, Sir John Robsart of Syderstone, who had been Sheriff of Norfolk and Suffolk in 1547, had married Elizabeth, the widow
of Roger Appleyard of Stanfield. Elizabeth was the mother of four children by her first husband, including the brothers John and Philip Appleyard who
were captured by Kett and who later helped to defend Norwich against the rebels. Amy Robsart, born in 1532, was therefore half-sister to the Appleyards of Stanfield.2 Elizabeth, who by the terms of her late husband's will held Stanfield Hall for life, died at some time during the year of the rising, and
Stanfield, only three miles from Wymondham, passed to her eldest son John. Amy might well have been living at Stanfield prior to her mother's death and could well have visited her half-brother's family there afterwards. She was evidently in the neighbourhood of Norwich in August and September of 1549. Stanfield figures in the story of Kett's rebellion not only in connection with Robert Dudley's first unfortunate marriage but also as the residence from
which John Flowerdew had conducted his demolition of Wymondham Abbey. Elizabeth Robsart's house was two or three miles closer to Wymondham than
Flowerdew's home at Hethersett and was open to the Sergeant because his eldest son William was married to Frances Appleyard, Elizabeth's daughter.
The Appleyards and the Flowerdews were neighbours, relations, and allies, and were all involved from the earliest days as the objects of Kett's hostility.

Page 145 - 147:

. . . . . . The rest of the story has often been told. Ten years later Dudley had become the favourite of the young Queen Elizabeth who, it was generally thought, wished to marry him. His wife Amy was an obstacle to any such plan, and when on September 8, 1560, she was found with a broken neck at the foot of a staircase at Cumnor Place in Berkshire (where she had been residing) it was immediately suspected that either her husband or the Queen or both had contrived her death. As soon as Dudley heard the news he saw that suspicion would fall on him and did everything he could to promote a disinterested inquiry. John Appleyard was summoned to Cumnor, as the representative of Amy's family, and was present at her funeral while Dudley remained carefully in London. Eventually the Berkshire coroner's court returned a verdict of death by misadventure and Dudley was, officially at least, removed from suspicion. John Appleyard was not satisfied and in 1567 he made an effort to reopen the issue. Seven years had passed, however, and Dudley, who had long since been restored to favour and created Earl of Leicester, had then nothing to fear from Amy's ghost. Appleyard was ordered to drop the matter and to apologize for his accusations. Amy's marriage into the powerful Dudley family, although no doubt hailed as a great match, brought her Norfolk relations into trouble on several occasions. In 1553 John Appleyard had supported his brother-in-law when that nobleman proclaimed Jane Grey Queen on King's Lynn market place. Later Amy's death alienated her Norfolk relations from Dudley and placed them in the difficult position of having to take some action against one who had become the most powerful man in the kingdom. The Appleyards seem to have survived and prospered in Norfolk, however, for in 1588 (coincidentally the year of Leicester's death) John was appointed High Sheriff of the county.

Robert Kett's marriage to Alice Appleyard is not directly proved, but practically proved by a series of extraordinary bits of circumstantial evidence. If it is true that Kett married a daughter of Sir Nicholas Appleyard he was brother-in-law to Roger Appleyard and therefore uncle by marriage to the brothers John and Philip whom he captured early in the rising and who managed the guns against him during the first attack on Norwich. He would have been uncle also to their sister Frances, who was married to Sergeant Flowerdew's son William. And by Roger Appleyard's widow's second marriage Robert Kett was brought into affinity with the Robsarts and, had he lived a little longer, would have been connected by a chain of marriages to both Warwick and Somerset. None of this need be unduly surprising, for the Norfolk gentry were for centuries bound together by complex networks of familial ties which were frequently crossed by political and ideological divisions. Kett's probable marriage does show, however, that far from being naturally opposed to Flowerdew and the Appleyards he was by birth and status of their kind.

 

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