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Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk

(1536-1572), Potential suitor to Mary, Queen of Scots

Sitter associated with 17 portraits
As one of the most powerful noblemen in Elizabethan England, Thomas Howard played a critical role in English history. A direct rival of the Earl of Leicester, he was appointed as a Privy Councillor and served as Earl Marshall of England, supervising the funeral rites of Mary I and the coronation of Elizabeth I. However, his ambition and pro-Catholic interests meant he became the focus of plots and religious dissent, which ultimately led to his downfall. His secret plan to marry Mary Queen of Scots and the central part he played in the plot to ensure her succession to the throne, led to his dramatic fall from grace in 1571. He was executed for treason in 1572.

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