Thomas Bryan (courtier)

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Sir Thomas Bryan (died 1518) was an English courtier during the reign of Henry VIII.


He was the son of Sir Thomas Bryan, and became vice-chamberlain to Catherine of Aragon.[1]


His wife, Margaret Bryan was governess to the King's four acknowledged children, Mary, Elizabeth, Edward and his illegitimate son, Henry Fitzroy, 1st Duke of Richmond and Somerset. She impressed the King so much, he made her Baroness Bryan in her own right. They had three children, Margaret, Francis and Elizabeth.

Francis was a close friend of the King's and of his brother-in-law, Nicholas Carew. As Baroness Bryan was the half-sister of Elizabeth Boleyn, Countess of Wiltshire and the mother of the King's mistress Mary Boleyn and his second wife Anne Boleyn, fortunes improved for the Bryan family during the 1520s and early 1530s. But it was not only Thomas Bryan's nieces by marriage who attracted the King, but his daughter, Elizabeth Carew, also. Elizabeth was linked to Henry from 1514 and was said to have been given jewels by Henry VIII that technically belonged to the queen, Katherine of Aragon.


  1. Baker, J. H. "Bryan, Sir Thomas". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/49667.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles> (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)