Catalogue description Lisle Papers

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Details of SP 3
Reference: SP 3
Title: Lisle Papers

Correspondence of Arthur Plantagenet, Lord Lisle, the acknowledged illegitimate son of Edward IV, and of Lisle's second wife, Honor Grenville, previously the wife of Sir John Bassett. The circa 3,000 papers, mostly out-letters of a private nature, date from the time when Lisle was resident in Calais (then English), acting as Henry VIII's Lord Deputy there.

Lord and Lady Lisle corresponded with a wide range of family, family retainers and servants, and political and social acquaintances at court and in the counties. Their main correspondent was John Husee, Lisle's agent and secretary, based in London, whose letters are full of valuable political detail.

The papers were confiscated when Lisle was arrested on suspicion of treason in 1540.

Date: 1533-1540
Separated material:

A few papers can also be found in the Cotton, Harleian and Royal Manuscripts in the British Library. These strays were included in the Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, of the Reign of Henry VIII, and some were printed in The Lisle Letters.

A considerable number of the letters strayed at some time out of the series into SP 1

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English

Honor Grenville, 1533-1533

Arthur Plantagenet, Viscount Lisle, 1480-1542

Physical description: 18 volume(s)
Access conditions: Available in microform only
Custodial history: The papers remained with other confiscated papers in the Treasury of the Receipt of the Exchequer, which was located in the Chapter House of Westminster Abbey, until 1832. Then the State Paper Commission requested the Home Office to order the transfer of the Lisle Papers to the State Paper Office (where the Commission was based) in order to facilitate its work. Although the Lisle Papers were moved, they were not in fact included in the State Papers, but remained in the custody of the State Paper Office until its amalgamation with the Public Record Office in 1852.
Publication note:

The records are calendared in Letters and Papers Foreign and Domestic of the Reign of Henry VIII ed J S Brewer J Gairdner and R H Brodie (London 1862-1930). Please speak to staff at the Map and Large Document Room enquiry desk for the precise location. Many are printed in full in a modernised form in The Lisle Letters ed M St C Byrne (Chicago 1981). A condensed edition was published as The Lisle Letters: An Abridgement ed M St C Byrne selected and arranged by B Boland (Chicago 1983) .

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