Sir William Compton was an ambitious royal servant and a close friend of the king, yet he has been rather neglected and there is little information available on him.
William Compton was born in around 1482 and was the only son of Edward Compton of Compton in Warwickshire and his wife, Joan, daughter of Walter Aylworth. He was around 11 years of age when he became the ward of Henry VII following his father’s death in 1493. Henry VII made him a page of Henry, Duke of York, the future Henry VIII. Compton was around nine years older than the king’s son, but they became close friends, and when Henry VIII came to the throne in 1509, the young king kept Compton close by appointing him a gentleman of the king’s privy chamber. Compton was made the new king’s groom of the stool. This position made Compton one of Henry VIII’s most intimate and trusted servants, and meant that he controlled access to the king.[Read More...]