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Guide to the Royal Warrants Pertaining to the Children of King Charles II of England, 1672-1675

Abstract

King Charles II of England (1630-1685) did not have any official heirs. He did, though, have many children by a number of mistresses. For the children born to these other women that the King acknowledged, most were given titles of nobility within a few years of their birth (along with most of their mothers). The names of seven of these children appear in this collection.

This collection contains royal warrants or decrees issued during the reign of King Charles II of England. Of the seven documents, four are written on behalf of the King, two are 'certification of armes' the remaining item is a listing of possible heraldic figures. The names listed in the warrants are sons and daughters of the King and three of his mistresses.

Descriptive Summary

Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Creator
England and Wales. Sovereign (1660-1685 : Charles II)
Title
Royal Warrants Pertaining to the Children of King Charles II of England 1672-1675
Language of Material
English
Extent
0.1 Linear Feet, 7 items
Location
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

Collection Overview

This collection contains royal warrants or decrees issued during the reign of King Charles II of England concerning the assignment of 'armes' or royal titles. Four of the seven documents are written on behalf of the King by the Earl Marshall of England. Two are 'certification of armes' by Edward Walker. The remaining item is a listing of possible heraldic figures to be used for any of the King's children. The names listed in the warrants are sons and daughters of the King and three of his known mistresses. Those listed include Anne Palmer Fitzroy, Charles Fitzroy, Charlotte Fitzroy, George Fitzroy, and Henry Fitzroy, children of Charles II and Barbara née Villiers (1641-1709). Charles Lennox, the son of Charles II and Louise Renée de Penancoet de Kérouaille (1649–1734) and Charles Beauclerk, son of Charles II and Nell Gwyn (1650-1687). Three of the four warrant papers are early drafts of the final documents.

Administrative Information

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Collection is open for research.

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All or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

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Contents of the Collection

Armes Warrant for Earles of Southampton and Euston and Lord George Fitzroy, 1672

Document granting titles of nobility or 'armes' to the Earles of Southampton and Euston and to Lord George Fitzroy, all children of Charles II and Barbara née Villiers (1641-1709), Duchess of Cleveland.

Box 1 Folder 1
Certification of Armes Warrant for Earles of Southampton and Euston and Lord George Fitzroy, 1672

Certification by Edward Walker, 'Kn. Garter Principall King of Armes' of royal declaration of Dec. 10 assigning title of Earl of Southampton to Charles FitzRoy (and the like for the Earl of Euston and George FitzRoy).

Box 1 Folder 2
Draft Armes Warrant for Charles Beauclerk, 1672

Draft warrant from King Charles II granting Charles Beauclerk the title of Earl of Burford. Beauclerk was the son of Charles II and Nell Gwyn (1650-1687).

Box 1 Folder 3
Draft Armes Warrant for Daughters of the Duchess of Cleveland, 1672

'Draught' of warrant from King Charles II granting notble titles to Anne and Charlotte Fitzroy, daughters of the Duchess of Cleveland (a mistress of Charles II).

Box 1 Folder 4
Draft Armes Warrant for the Duke of Richmond, 1675

Draft of warrant from King Charles II granting a noble title to Charles Lenox, son of King Charles II and Louise Renée de Penancoet de Kérouaille (1649-1734).

Box 1 Folder 5
Certification of Armes for the Duke of Richmond, 1675

Certification by Edward Walker, 'Kn. Garter Principall King of Armes' of royal declaration of Oct. 1 assigning title of Duke of Richmond to Charles Lenox.

Box 1 Folder 6
List

Largely undecipherable list with four distinct parts possibly discussing potential heraldic elements to assign to King's natural children (Charles II did not have any).

Box 1 Folder 7

Historical Note

King Charles II of England (1630-1685) did not have any official heirs. He did, though, have many children by a number of mistresses. Historians believe the number of children is somewhere between 10 and fifteen. The use of 'armes' or titles of nobility and the privileges that came with it was one way the King acknowledged that these were his children. The most children attributed to a relationship is that between King Charles and Barbara née Villiers (1641–1709), the Duchess of Cleveland, five, all of whom are named in this collection.

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Royal Warrants Pertaining to the Children of King Charles II of England, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

Information as to how the Royal Warrants Pertaining to the Children of England's King Charles II were acquired by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library is currently unknown. Items in this collection were formerly known as Duke English Ms. 001.

Processing Information

Processed by Bob Malme, July 2012

Encoded by Bob Malme, July 2012

Descriptive sources and standards used to create this inventory: DACS, EAD, NCEAD guidelines, and local Style Guide.

This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.