Sir John Savage V, K.B., K.G.

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John Savage, V

Also Known As: "Knight of the Garter"
Birthplace: Clifton, Cheshire, England (United Kingdom)
Death: October 18, 1492 (43-48)
Boulogne-sur-Mer, Comté d'Artois (Present department Pas-de-Calais), (Present Nord-Pas de Calais), France (killed while on reconnaissance during the Siege of Boulogne.)
Place of Burial: Macclesfield, Cheshire, England, United Kingdom
Immediate Family:

Son of Sir John Savage IV of Clifton, K.G. and Katherine Savage
Husband of Dorothy Savage
Father of Sir John Savage, VI, Kt., Sheriff of Worcestershire; Felicia Savage; Lady Cecilia Savage; Ellen Savage; Maud Savage and 3 others
Brother of Margaret Trafford; Elisabetha Leeke; Margaret? Waterton; Ann Eaton; Ellen Legh and 10 others

Occupation: Cheshire landed gentry, was a noted English military commander of the late 15th-century
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Sir John Savage V, K.B., K.G.

Sir John Savage, KG, KB, PC (1444–1492), was an English knight of the Savage family, who was a noted military commander of the late 15th-century. Savage most notably fought at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485, where he commanded the left flank of the Tudor (Lancastrian) army to victory and is said to have personally slain the Duke of Norfolk in single combat. Earlier in the Wars of the Roses, Savage had been a supporter and friend of the Yorkist King Edward IV, fighting alongside him and helping him to victories at the Battle of Barnet in 1471 and the Battle of Tewkesbury later that same year, as well as joining the Duke of Gloucester's invasion of Scotland in 1482, where the Duke made him a Knight banneret. However, following the death of Edward and the Duke of Gloucester's ascension to the throne as Richard III the Savage family was viewed with suspicion due to their familial connection to the Stanleys, who were in turn connected to the Tudors. Consequently Savage was one of the prominent figures who invited Henry Tudor to invade England in 1485, a struggle which culminated in the Battle of Bosworth Field. After his victory Henry Tudor received the circlet of Richard from Savage's uncle Lord Stanley and was crowned King of England on the field of battle, taking the throne as Henry VII of England.

The year following his victory at Bosworth, Henry VII sent Savage to arrest Sir Humphrey Stafford and his brother Thomas Stafford, who had risen up against the king in the first major challenge to Henry's reign. Savage led a force to Culham where the two were seeking sanctuary and had them forcibly removed. The brothers were tried and found guilty, Sir Humphrey was executed whilst Thomas was pardoned. This event was notable enough for Pope Innocent VIII to announce a papal bull which established modifications affecting the privilege of sanctuary, significantly limiting its practical use and vindicating the actions taken by Savage on behalf of the King. Savage later served as one of two main cavalry commanders at the Battle of Stoke Field on 16 June 1487, where leading Yorkists fought to put the pretender Lambert Simnel on the throne. This was the final battle of the Wars of the Roses, with the engagement ending in a decisive victory for the Tudors and leaving nearly all of Henry's Yorkist opponents dead. This victory served to end the previously significant factional divisions between those loyal to the houses of York and Lancaster. In 1492 Savage raised a force of men-at-arms and archers and joined Henry's expeditionary force to France. The campaign was intended to stop the French King Charles VIII's support of the pretender to the throne of England Perkin Warbeck. Savage would not return to England alive, losing his life during the Siege of Boulogne.

Savage was a supporter successively of Edward IV of England who appointed him a Knight of the Bath on the occasion of his Queen's coronation on 26 May 1465, and Henry VII, who appointed him a Knight of the Order of the Garter in 1488. Savage also served as a member of Henry VII's Privy Council.

Sir John served under King Henry VII in the Battle of Bosworth in England (described as some as the last significant battle in the War of the Roses). For his service, King Henry gave Sir John loans obtained during this battle.

Sir John continued his service to King Henry. When Henry invaded France (following Charles VIII of France receiving Perkin Warbeck, who had pretended to be Richard of Shrewsbury, Duke of York, who had been killed at the Tower of London a decade earlier), laying siege to Bullen (Boulogne), John was killed.

Imposter Warbeck would be eventually captured (1497) and slain (1499), at which time King Henry VII became the undisputed first Tudor King of England. This ushered in the Tudor dynasty which began a new era in English History.

Adlington Hall has the Savage Coat of Arms in it.

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From the Dictionary of the National Biography:,_John_(d.1492)_(DNB00)

SAVAGE, Sir JOHN (d. 1492), politician and soldier, was son of Sir John Savage (1422–1495) of Clifton, by Katherine, daughter of Thomas, lord Stanley, and sister of Thomas Stanley, first earl of Derby [q. v.] Thomas Savage (d. 1507) [q. v.], archbishop of York, was his brother.

John Savage, junior, as he was usually styled, was created a knight of the Bath by Edward IV on the occasion of his queen's coronation on 26 May 1465 (Letters and Papers illustrative of the Wars of the English in France under Henry VI, ed. Stevenson, Rolls Ser. ii. [784]). On 17 April 1483, as a knight of the royal body, he was one of those selected to bear Edward's body into Westminster Abbey (Letters and Papers illustrative of the Reigns of Richard III and Henry VII, ed. Gairdner, Rolls Ser. i. 5, 8).

Savage was mayor of Chester in 1484 and 1485, and in the former year was made a freeman of the city, with eight of his brothers.

Richard III bestowed much preferment upon him, delegating him to take the oaths of allegiance in Kent, and placing him in the commission of the peace (Harl. MS. 433, ff. 90–4). Nevertheless he had a secret understanding with the Earl of Richmond.

His treachery came to light through the arrest of Lord Stanley's son, Lord Strange, and Savage joined Richmond on his march through Wales. At the battle of Bosworth he is said to have commanded the left wing of Henry's army. For his services Henry VII granted him a number of forfeited estates in Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, and Shropshire, on 7 March 1486. On 16 Feb. 1488 he received fresh grants, and on 16 Nov. was elected a knight of the Garter (Materials for the Reign of Henry VII, ed. Campbell, Rolls Ser. ii. 245).

He took part in the siege of Boulogne in October 1492, and, being intercepted by the enemy while reconnoitring, refused to surrender, and was in consequence slain (Bacon, Hist. of Henry VII, ed. Lumby, p. 102; Hall, Chronicle, 1809, p. 459).

By his wife Dorothy, daughter of Sir Ralph Vernon of Haddon, he had a son, John, who succeeded him, and four daughters. Sir John had also an illegitimate son George, rector of Davenham, Cheshire, who is said to have been the father of Edmund Bonner [q. v.], bishop of London.


  • [G. F. A[rmstrong]'s Savages of the Ards;
  • Addit. MS. 6298, f. 290;
  • Gairdner's Life of Richard III, 1879, pp. 288–9;
  • Ramsay's Lancaster and York, 1892, ii. 540;
  • Notes and Queries, 8th ser. vi. 397.]
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A warlike man, who fought at Battle of Bosworth, 1485.

Died before his father

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Became Knight of the Garter in 1488 under King Henry VII, probably following the Battle of Stoke. Said to have been knighted personally by the king after the battle.

  • _____________________
  • 'Sir John Savage1,2,3,4,5
  • 'M, #53290, b. circa 1448, d. 18 October 1492
  • Father Sir John Savage, Mayor of Chester1,2,6,7 b. c 1423, d. 22 Nov 1495
  • Mother Katherine Stanley1,2,6,7 b. 1430
  • ' Sir John Savage was born circa 1448 at of Clifton, Cheshire, England. He married Dorothy Vernon, daughter of Sir Ralph Vernon and Margaret Butler, circa 1470 at Clifton, Cheshire, England; They had 1 son (Sir John) and 5 daughters (Elizabeth; Alice, wife of Sir William Brereton; Felicia, wife of William Milward; Ellen, wife of John Hawarden; & Maud, wife of Sir Robert Needham).1,2,3,4,5 Sir John Savage died on 18 October 1492 at Siege of Boulogne, Boulogne-sur-Mer, Pas-de-Calais, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France; Buried at St. Michael's Church, Macclesfield, Cheshire.1,8,4
  • 'Family Dorothy Vernon b. c 1445
  • Children
    • Alice Savage+1 b. c 1472
    • Sir John IX Savage, Sheriff of Worcestershire+8 b. 1478, d. 2 Mar 1527
    • Elizabeth Savage+3,4,5 b. c 1482
  • Citations
  • 1.[S5] Douglas Richardson, Plantagenet Ancestry, p. 559.
  • 2.[S5] Douglas Richardson, Plantagenet Ancestry, p. 639.
  • 3.[S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. II, p. 333.
  • 4.[S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. III, p. 492.
  • 5.[S6] Douglas Richardson, Plantagenet Ancestry: 2nd Edition, Vol. II, p. 653-654.
  • 6.[S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. III, p. 491-492.
  • 7.[S6] Douglas Richardson, Plantagenet Ancestry: 2nd Edition, Vol. II, p. 653.
  • 8.[S11583] The Wallop Family and Their Ancestry, by Vernon James Watney, p., 686.
  • From:
  • ______________
  • 'Sir John Savage1
  • M, #353714
  • Last Edited=27 Apr 2009
  • ' Sir John Savage is the son of John Savage.1
  • ' He was a Lancastrian.1 He was invested as a Knight, Order of the Garter (K.G.).1
  • 'Child of Sir John Savage
    • 1.Alice Savage+2
  • Citations
  • 1.[S47] Hugh Montgomery-Massingberd, editor, Burke's Irish Family Records (London, U.K.: Burkes Peerage Ltd, 1976), page 166. Hereinafter cited as Burke's Irish Family Records.
  • 2.[S47] Hugh Montgomery-Massingberd, Burke's Irish Family Records.
  • From:
  • _________________
  • 'John SAVAGE (Sir Knight)
  • 'Died: 18 Oct 1492, Boulogne
  • 'Buried: St. Michael's Church, Macclesfield, Cheshire, England
  • 'Notes: Knight of the Garter. Elder brother of Archbishop Savage. Acted with Sir Rhys ap Thomas in support of Henry Tudor. He commanded the left wing of the invading army at Bosworth Field in 1485 and was slain at the Siege of Boulogne in 1492.
  • Father: John SAVAGE (Sir Knight)
  • Mother: Catherine STANLEY
  • 'Married: Dorothy VERNON
  • Children:
    • 1. John SAVAGE (Sheriff of Worcestershire)
    • 2. Felicia SAVAGE
    • 3. Ellen SAVAGE
    • 4. Maud SAVAGE
    • 5. Elizabeth SAVAGE
    • 6. Alice SAVAGE
  • From: SAVAGE (Sir Knight)2
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Sir John Savage V, K.B., K.G.'s Timeline

Clifton, Cheshire, England (United Kingdom)
Clifton Hall, Halton, Cheshire, England
Ards, County Donegal, Ulster, Ireland
Clifton, Cheshire, , England
Clifton, Cheshire, , England
Clifton, Cheshire, , England
Chester, Cheshire, , England
October 18, 1492
Age 48
Boulogne-sur-Mer, Comté d'Artois (Present department Pas-de-Calais), (Present Nord-Pas de Calais), France
Age 48
Savage Chapel at St. Michael's Church, Macclesfield, Cheshire, England, United Kingdom