King Henry VIII & Mistress Agnes Blewitt
The story says Henry VIII is known to have had 6 wives and several mistresses during his marriage to Catherine of Aragon. One mistress is said to been Agnes Blewitt. King Henry the VIII is said to have fathered a son with her, whom was born after her marriage to William Edwards. She and William named the son Richard Edwards. Agnes and William Edwards lived adjacent to the King's Hunting lodge in Somerset, England. The Edwards had other children with birth and baptism records stating William and Agnes as the parents, but there is no records for Richard. Richard was afforded many favorable opportunities as a young man, including a post at Christ Church College in Oxford. Finally, he was included in the inner circle of the royal family, both during the lifetime and after the death of Henry VIII. This was the pattern of favoritism shown other known bastard children of Henry VIII. A book on the subject was written in 1992 by David Dean Edwards called 'Edward's Legacy'
English composer and poet, Richard became Master of the Children of the Chapel Royal in 1561 and wrote two plays for them. His five surviving songs, of which the most famous is "In Going to my Naked Bed", show the influence of the Franco-Flemish style on English music before the arrival of the Italian madrigal. Three keyboard arrangements of 3 part-songs (only one assigned to him, but the other two assumed to be his from his authorship of the words) survive in MS.
Richard Edwards was educated at Oxford, receiving both a Bachelor's and a Master's degree. He considered the law as a career, entering Lincoln's Inn Field, but never took up the practice. Instead he became master of the children at the Chapel Royal, where he created musical dramas that the children's choir could perform. The composition, 'Palamon and Arcite' was written for the Queen, and was performed at Oxford. The Queen was impressed with the piece, and intended to bestow a gift on Edwards, but he died soon after the performance. Little more is known of Edwards' life. Edwards' importance as a playwright is that he instigated the basing of the English tragedy on the Latin classical model. His plays were classical in subject, but were set in a contemporary world. The only play of his that is still in existence is 'Damon and Pithias' (1571).
Click here to see the lineage from Henry Tudor and Agnes Blewitt to the Johnson Family.