The Tudor Society

September 8 – George Carey, 2nd Baron Hunsdon

A miniature of George Carey, 2nd Baron Hunsdon, by Nicholas HilliardOn this day in history, 8th September 1603, in the reign of King James I and just a few months after the death of Elizabeth I, courtier George Carey, 2nd Baron Hunsdon, died.

Carey was the son of Henry Carey, 1st Baron Hundson, and grandson of Mary Carey (née Boleyn).

He served Elizabeth I as Marshal of the Household, Justice of the Peace, Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, Captain of the Isle of Wight, member of Parliament, Captain of the Gentlemen Pensioners, Lord Chamberlain and Privy Councillor.

Here are some facts about George Carey, 2nd Baron Hunsdon:

  • George Carey was born on 26th February 1548, in the reign of King Edward VI.
  • Carey was the son of Henry Carey, 1st Baron Hunsdon, and his wife, Anne Morgan.
  • He was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge.
  • In 1566, Carey went to Scotland with the Earl of Bedford to attend the baptism of Mary, Queen of Scots' son, the future James VI/I.

  • In 1569, he was sent on a mission to Scotland to negotiate a potential marriage match between Mary, Queen of Scots, and the Duke of Norfolk.
  • In 1570, Carey knighted for his services to the crown at Berwick.
  • In 1571, he served as a Member of Parliament for Hertfordshire, and then, in 1572, for Canterbury, and later for Hampshire.
  • Carey was married to Elizabeth Spencer, daughter of Sir John Spencer of Althorp, Northamptonshire. They had a daughter together, Elizabeth, who went on to marry Sir Thomas Berkeley and then, after his death, Sir Thomas Chamberlain.
  • In 1578, Carey was appointed Marshal of the Household and it was in that year that he travelled to the Low Countries on a mission.
  • From 1580, he served as a Justice of the Peace for Hertfordshire, and then Hampshire and Middlesex.
  • In 1582, Carey was sent on a mission to James VI of Scotland.
  • In 1583, he was made Constable of Bamburgh Castle and also became Captain of the Isle of Wight.
  • In 1588, during the Spanish Armada, Carey sent supplies to Lord Admiral Howard.
  • In 1596, following the death of his father, he inherited the offices of Captain of the Gentleman Pensioners and Lord Chamberlain, and in 1597, he also became a privy councillor. He also took over the patronage of his father's company of players, the Lord Chamberlain's Men, who became the King's Men after James VI became King James I in 1603. His father's death also saw him becoming 2nd Baron Hunsdon.
  • In 1597, Carey was elected as a Knight of the Garter.
  • From 1599, Carey served as Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire.
  • Carey resigned as Lord Chamberlain in May 1603 and died on 8th September 1603 and his brother, John, became 3rd Baron Hunsdon.

Also on this day in Tudor history...

Image: A miniature of George Carey, 2nd Baron Hunsdon, by Nicholas Hilliard.

Notes and Sources

  • "George Carey, second Baron Hunsdon (1548-1603)" in MacCaffrey, W. (2014, September 25). Carey, Henry, first Baron Hunsdon (1526–1596), courtier and administrator. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Retrieved 5 Sep. 2023, from
  • Hyde, P. "CAREY, Sir George (1547-1603), of Blackfriars, London, Hunsdon, Herts. And Carisbrooke, I.o.W." History of Parliament Online,

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September 8 – George Carey, 2nd Baron Hunsdon