Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Saint-George, Henry (1581-1644)

SAINT-GEORGE, Sir HENRY (1581–1644), Garter king-of-arms, eldest son of Sir Richard Saint-George [q. v.], born on 27 Jan. 1581, was created Rouge Rose pursuivant-extraordinary in May 1610; Bluemantle pursuivant-in-ordinary on 23 Dec. 1611; and Richmond herald on 22 March 1615–16. In 1624 he was one of the learned persons recommended by Edmund Bolton [q. v.] to be members of the projected Academy Royal or College and Senate of Honour. In 1625 he and William Le Neve, York herald, were sent to France by Charles I to conduct the princess Henrietta Maria to England. They performed this duty so much to the satisfaction of the court of France that Louis XIII gave them a thousand French crowns. In 1627 Saint-George was joined in a commission with Lord Spencer and Peter Young to present the insignia of the order of the Garter to Gustavus Adolphus, king of Sweden, who conferred upon Saint-George the honour of knighthood on 23 September (Metcalfe, Book of Knights, p. 188; Addit. MS. 32102, f. 200 b). He was created Norroy king-of-arms on 24 June 1635. At the commencement of the civil war he attended the royal standard and remained with the king at Oxford, where he was created a doctor of medicine 9 May 1643 (Wood, Fasti Oxon. ed. Bliss, ii. 67). He was advanced to the dignity of Garter king-of-arms in April 1644, in succession to Sir John Borough [q. v.] He died in Brasenose College on 5 Nov. 1644, and was buried in the cathedral of Christ Church, Oxford.

Saint-George drew up in 1628 a ‘Catalogue of the Nobility of England,’ manuscript folio. This is ‘involved’ in ‘A New Catalogue of the Dukes, Marquesses, Earls, Viscounts, Barons, &c.,’ published by Thomas Walkley, London, 1658, 8vo.

Of the heraldic visitations held by him the following have been printed: Cornwall (1620), edited by Lieut.-Col. J. L. Vivian and H. H. Drake, 1874; Somerset (1623), edited by F. T. Colby for the Harleian Society, 1876; London (1633–5), edited by J. J. Howard and J. L. Chester for the Harleian Society, 2 vols. 1880–83; Wiltshire (1623), edited by G. W. Marshall, Exeter, 1882, 8vo; and Dorset (1623), edited by J. P. Rylands for the Harleian Society, 1885.

Saint-George married, in 1614, Mary, daughter of Sir Thomas Dayrell, knight, of Lillingston Dayrell, Buckinghamshire. Among his children was Sir Thomas Saint-George (1615–1703), who became Somerset herald in July 1660, Norroy king-of-arms in January 1679–80, and Garter king-of-arms in February 1685–6, in succession to Dugdale; he left in manuscript a treatise on ‘Titles of Honour,’ printed in London, 1864. Another son, Sir Henry Saint-George the younger (1625–1715), became Richmond herald on 18 June 1660, Norroy king-of-arms on 27 April 1677, Clarenceux king-of-arms on 25 Jan. 1678–9, and Garter king-of-arms on 26 April 1703; and Richard Saint-George, who became Ulster king-of-arms.

[Anstis's Order of the Garter, i. 402; Foster's Alumni Oxon., 1500–1714, iv. 1300; Howard's Miscellanea Genealogica et Heraldica, new ser. iii. 79; Noble's College of Arms.]

T. C.