Dudley Carleton, Viscount Dorchester
Born: 10 Mar, 1574
Field: Statesman
Location in the Abbey: Chapel of st paul
Type of memorial: Sarcophagus
Type of material: Marble

Dudley Carleton, Viscount Dorchester and his first wife are buried in St Paul's chapel in Westminster Abbey. He has a large marble monument and effigy by sculptor Nicholas Stone. It was erected in 1640. The Latin inscription can be translated:

"Sacred to the everlasting memory of DUDLEY CARLETON, second son of Antony by Jocosa [or Joyce] Goodwin: born at Brightwell in Oxfordshire in March, year of Christ 1573. With precise and specialised knowledge of the languages, customs, jurisprudence, and laws of the different nations of Europe, he undertook and fulfilled many embassies on behalf of their most serene majesties King James (of most illustrious memory) and King Charles (long may he reign), to various Christian kings, princes and states; he loyally, justly and prudently discharged his confidential and highly arduous obligations as Chief Secretary of State and the secret affairs of the Privy Council. Because of his great excellence, he was adorned with the title and honour, first of Knight, then of Baron of Imbercourt, and finally of Viscount Dorchester, and also, (which is a far greater thing), with the love of all who saw him. He was vouchsafed two marriages during the course of his life: the first, of longer duration, was contracted with Anne Garrard, and the second, and briefer, with Anne, Viscountess Bayning, each a widow of distinguished blood and beauty; each, moreover, neither barren nor fruitful. Finally, on the 15th day of February, year of Christ 1631, he died at Westminster; giving back his soul to God, and his mortal trappings to the earth, he bequeathed a grievous sorrow to his king, to the kingdom and to all good men. By his first wife (who was a loyal companion to her husband both in life while he carried out his several ambassadorial duties, and also in death, lying here beside him), he had a son, who enjoyed the light of day for a few days only; while, of his second marriage (which, by now Principal Secretary to King Charles, he entered into scarce two years before his death), he left a posthumous daughter yet in the womb, soon to be born, who herself within a few months followed her father out of this life and into a better".

The dates given for his birth and death are in Old Style dating, which would now be 1574 and 1632 respectively. His first wife, Anne, Lady Tredway (nee Garrard) was buried on 21 April 1627 aged 41. There was no surviving issue and his title became extinct at his death. His second wife was Anne (nee Glemham), widow of Paul, Viscount Bayning. A shield of arms is shown at the top of the monument with shields also on the base. These include Carleton's arms "on a bend three mascles" and those of Garrard and Glemham. According to Stone's notebook the monument replaced one that had been set up for Lady Dorchester some years earlier.

He was born on 10 March 1574 and educated at Westminster School and Christ Church, Oxford. He lived for many years on the continent and was secretary to the governor of Ostend and later to the ambassador to France. In 1604 he became a Member of Parliament and in 1610 he was ambassador to Venice. He wrote extensively and a collection of his letters are in the National Archives.

A photo of the monument can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library.

Further reading:

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2004.

www.historyofparliamentonline.org