fluence at the university, and was a friend of Cromwell, with whom he corresponded (see Letters and Papers of Henry VIII, vols. v. viii. ix. x.) On 3 Feb. 1535 he resigned his headship, in accordance with a promise made the year before to Cromwell, who desired the post for another friend (Marshall). The latter was, however, not elected. Knolles retired to Wakefield, where he died on 9 May 1537. By his will, which is still extant at York, he desired to be buried near his parents in the south aisle of All Saints' Church, Wakefield. The gravestone has disappeared, but Walker (see Cathedral Church of Wakefield, p. 191) copied the Latin inscription from Dodsworth's notes in the Bodleian Library, Oxford.
[Le Neve's Fasti, iii. 131, 316, 561; Wood's Fasti, ed. Bliss, i. 35, 43, 48; Oxf. Univ. Reg. (Oxf. Hist. Soc.), i. 82; Sisson's Hist. of Wakefield Church, p. 15; Bloxam's Register of Magdalen College, ii. 321, iii. 82, iv. 7, 10, 46.]
KNOLLYS, Sir FRANCIS (1514?–1596), statesman, was elder son of Robert Knollys (d. 1521). The father is said by Dugdale to have been descended from Sir Robert Knollys or Knolles (d. 1407) [q. v.], the soldier, but the proofs are wanting. Sir Francis's pedigree cannot be authentically traced beyond Sir Thomas Knollys, lord mayor of London in 1399 and 1410, from whom Sir Francis's father was fifth in descent. Lord-mayor Knollys may, it is suggested, have been a nephew of the soldier. He was a member of the Grocers' Company; directed in 1400 the rebuilding of the Guildhall, and rebuilt St. Antholin's Church in Watling Street, where he was buried with his wife Joan. His will, dated 20 May 1435, was proved 11 July 1435 at Lambeth, where it is still preserved. Sir Thomas's son Thomas (d. 1446) possessed the manor of North Mimms, Hertfordshire. This passed to his heir, Robert, who died without male issue. It was the second son, Richard, who seems to have been grandfather of Sir Francis's father, Robert Knollys (Herald and Genealogist, vii. 553, viii. 289).
In 1488 the latter was one of Henry VII's henchmen, and late in that year was appointed to wait on ‘the king's dearest son the prince’ (Arthur). He received 5l. ‘by way of reward’ for each of the three years 1488 to 1490, and when Henry VII met Archduke Philip in 1500 he accompanied the English king as one of the ushers of the chamber (Materials illustrative of Henry VII, Rolls Ser. ii. 383, 394, 437, 562; Letters of Richard III and Henry VII, Rolls Ser. ed. Gairdner, ii. 89). He continued in the same office under Henry VIII, and received an annuity of 20l. on 15 Nov. 1509, and a grant of Upclatford, called Rookes Manor, in Hampshire—part of the confiscated property of Sir Richard Empson—on 10 Feb. 1510–11 (Letters, &c., of Henry VIII, i. 94, 218). The ‘Robert Knolles,’ a dyer of Wakefield, Yorkshire, who was given letters of protection on going to the war in France, in the retinue of Richard Tempest, in April 1513, can hardly be identical with the usher of the royal chamber (ib. i. 529, 546). On 9 July 1514 the usher and his wife were jointly granted the manor of Rotherfield Greys, near Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, in survivorship, at an annual rental of a red rose at midsummer. The grant was confirmed on 5 Jan. 1517–18 by letters patent for their own lives and that of one successor. Other royal gifts followed (ib. i. 841, ii. pt. ii. 1217, iii. pt. i. 121, iv. pt. i. 231). Robert Knollys died in 1521, and was buried in the church of St. Helen's, Bishopsgate. His will, dated 13 Nov. 1520, was proved 19 June 1521. His widow, Letitia or Lettice, was daughter of Sir Thomas Penyston of Hawridge and Marshall, Buckinghamshire. After Robert Knollys's death she became the second wife of Sir Robert Lee of Burston, Buckinghamshire, son of Sir Henry Lee of Quarendon in the same county. Sir Robert Lee, by whom she had issue, died in 1537, when she became the second wife of Sir Thomas Tresham of Rushton, Northamptonshire, prior (under Queen Mary) of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem. Her will, dated 28 June 1557, was proved 11 June 1558.
Robert Knollys's children included, besides Francis, a son Henry and two daughters, Mary and Jane. The latter married Sir Richard Wingfield of Kimbolton Castle. The son Henry (d. 1583) was in some favour with Edward VI and Queen Elizabeth. He went abroad with his brother Francis during Queen Mary's reign. In 1562 he was sent on a diplomatic mission to Germany, to observe the temper of German protestants (Froude, Hist. vi. 580), and in 1569 was temporarily employed in warding both Queen Mary of Scotland at Tutbury and the Duke of Norfolk in the Tower (Hatfield MSS. i. 443). He was M.P. for Reading in 1563, and for Christchurch in 1572. His will, dated 27 July 1582, was proved 2 Sept. 1583.
Francis, born about 1514, appears to have received some education at Oxford, but Wood's assertion that he was for a time a member of Magdalen College is unconfirmed. Henry VIII extended to him the favour that he had shown to his father, and secured to him in fee the paternal estate of Rotherfield Greys in 1538. Acts of parliament in 1540–