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SHORT historical notice of Chatsworth, and the gradual formation of its Library may not be without interest as a Preface to the following Catalogue.
The Manor of Chatsworth, in the
hundred of High Peak, in Derbyshire, was acquired by the Cavendish family' by purchase before the middle of the sixteenth century.
In the Domesday Survey CHETESUORDE” is registered as held for the king by William Peurel,' an illegitimate son of the Conqueror, and the ancestor of a family, whose name Sir Walter Scott has made familiar.
When we next hear of it, Chatsworth was in the possession
1 The House of Cavendish are of Norman descent; their ancestor was Robert de Gernon, who came over with William the Conqueror, and in reward of his services had grants of several lordships in Suffolk and Essex. One of his lineal descendants, Roger, in the beginning of the fourteenth century married the daughter and heiress of John Patton, lord of the Manor of Cavendish in Suffolk, from which their sons assumed the name of Cavendish. Collins: “Memoirs of the noble Family of Cavendish,” London, 1741.
? Originally the name was probably Chetelsford, from Chetel, a Saxon name.
3 In Langeleis 7 Chetesuorde. fibi Leuanot 7 Chetel. x. boù fre adgtd. Tra. x. boũ. A jacet ad Ednesoure. W. peurel custodit p regē. Dom. Book, 1783, vol. i. p. 273.
of the Leche family, in whose hands it remained for several generations until sold by Francis Leche to the Agards early in the sixteenth century.
The Agards did not long hold it; Elizabeth Hardwick, better known as “Bess of Hardwick,” had inherited vast territorial possessions in Derbyshire, and at her desire, as Collins writes, Sir William Cavendish, her second husband, sold his estates in the southern parts of England to purchase lands in Derbyshire, where her own friends and kindred lived.
Chief of such new purchases was Chatsworth ; soon after it became his, Sir William pulled down the old hall of the Leches and laid the foundation of a new house, which remained unfinished at his death in 1557.
Three sons and several daughters survived him. William, the second son, was distinguished for his eminent abilities. He took his seat in Parliament for Newport in the 31st year of Queen Elizabeth, and in 1605 was raised to the peerage as Baron Cavendish of Hardwick by James I. On the death of his elder brother Henry in 1616, he succeeded to the Chatsworth estates, and soon afterwards, in 1618, was created Earl of Devonshire. The third son, Charles, was father to William, Duke of Newcastle, who distinguished himself as a Cavalier General during the Civil Wars and as author of a splendid work on horsemanship.'
Collins: “Memoirs of the noble Family of Cavendish,” p. 138.
Collins says that Sir William was Cardinal Wolsey's secretary, and the author of “The Negotiations of Thomas Wolsey, the great Cardinal of England," of which Lord Herbert, in his life of Henry VIII., mentioned George Cavendish to be the author. But the late Rev. J. Hunter, in a pamphlet, “Who wrote Cavendish's Life of Wolsey," printed privately in 1814 and reprinted in Singer's edition of Wolsey's life, has shown that the Cardinal's secretary and biographer was not Sir William, but, as Lord Herbert had said, his elder brother, George Cavendish.
3 “La Méthode et invention nouvelle de dresser les chevaux, An