however, were written to be shown to the king's council (ib. vol. xiii. pt. ii. No. 822); by whom they were despatched to Reginald in Italy. Though the countess's alarm was quite genuine, her disapproval of Reginald's proceedings was not equally sincere. The king knew well that his policy was disliked by the whole family, and he privately told the French ambassador that he intended to destroy all of them (ib. vol. xiii. pt. ii. No. 753). The blow fell in the autumn of 1538, when her sons Geoffrey and Lord Montague were arrested. One Gervase Tyndall, a spy upon the countess's household, was called before Cromwell at Lewes, and reported a number of circumstances about the escape some years before of the countess's chaplain, John Helyar, rector of Warblington, beyond sea, and about clandestine messages sent abroad by one Hugh Holland, probably to Cardinal Pole himself. Fitzwilliam, earl of Southampton, and Goodrich, bishop of Ely, were sent down to Warblington to examine the countess. They questioned her all day, from the forenoon till almost night, but could not wring from her any admission. They nevertheless seized her goods and carried her off to Fitzwilliam's house at Cowdry. Her house at Warblington was thoroughly searched, and some letters and papal bulls discovered. Her persecutors renewed the attack with a set of written interrogatories, and obtained her signature to the answers. She remained in Fitzwilliam's house, long unvisited either by him or his countess, until 14 March following (1539), when, in answer to her complaints, he saw her, and addressed her with barbarous incivility. Shortly afterwards she was removed to the Tower. In May a sweeping act of attainder was passed by the parliament against not only Exeter and Montague, who had already suffered death, but against the countess, who was not even called to answer the accusations against her, and against her son Reginald and many others. At the third reading of the bill in the House of Lords Cromwell produced, what was taken as evidence of treason, a tunic of white silk, embroidered with the arms of England, viz. three lions surrounded by a wreath of pansies and marigolds, which it was said Fitzwilliam had found in her house, having on the back the badge of the five wounds carried by the insurgents at the time of the northern rebellion. The act of parliament was passed on 12 May 1539, but it was not put into force at once; and in April 1540 it was supposed that the countess would be released. She was tormented in prison by the severity of the weather and the insufficiency of her clothing. In April 1541 there was another insurrection in Yorkshire under Sir John Neville; and on this account, apparently, it was resolved to put the countess to death, without any further process, under the act of attainder passed two years before. Early in the morning of 27 May she was told that she was to die. She replied that no crime had been imputed to her; but she walked boldly from her cell to East Smithfield Green, which was within the precincts of the Tower. No scaffold was erected, and there was only a low block. The lord mayor and a select company were present to witness the execution. The countess commended her soul to God, and asked the bystanders to pray for the king and queen, Prince Edward, and the Princess Mary, her god-daughter, to whom she desired to be specially commended. She then, as commanded, laid her head upon the block. The executioner was a clumsy novice, who hideously hacked her neck and shoulders before the decapitation was accomplished.
[Dugdale's Baronage; Sandford's Genealogical History; Hall's Chronicle; Letters and Papers of Henry VIII; Cal. of State Papers, Spanish; Lords' Journals, i. 107; Correspondance Politique de MM. de Castillon et de Marillac. The account of Margaret's execution given by Lord Herbert of Cherbury in Kennet's England (ii. 227) is clearly not so trustworthy as that of Chapuys.]
POLE, MICHAEL de la, called in English Michael atte Pool, Earl of Suffolk (1330?–1389), lord chancellor, son of Sir William de la Pole (d. 1366) [q. v.], by Katherine Norwich, was probably born about 1330 (Doyle, Official Baronage, iii. 443). In 1339 he received for himself and his heirs the grant of a reversion of an annuity of 70l. from the customs of Hull, already bestowed on his father and uncle (Rot. Orig. Abbreviatio, ii. 229). In 1354 he had a charter of free warren within his demesne lands of Bliburgh, Gresthorpe, and Grafton. He was already a knight, when in 1355 he was attached to the retinue of Henry, duke of Lancaster [q. v.], in his abortive expedition to Normandy. Henceforward his chief occupation for many years was war against the French. In 1359 he accompanied Edward the Black Prince in a new expedition (Fœdera, iii. 443). He was again fighting in France in 1369. He was serving in 1370 under the Black Prince in Aquitaine, took part in September of that year in the famous siege of Limoges (Froissart, ed. Luce, vii. 244), and in December 1370 and January 1371 fought under John of Gaunt at the successful siege of Montpont (ib. vol. viii. pp. xi–xiii, 12). He also accompanied John of Gaunt on the abortive expedition of 1372. During his French campaigns he was twice taken prisoner (Rot. Parl. iii. 217 a). He was also at one time captain of Calais (ib.)