William Compton, 1st Earl of Northampton
Northampton was the son of Henry Compton, 1st Baron Compton, and Frances Hastings. His maternal grandparents were Francis Hastings, 2nd Earl of Huntingdon and Catherine Pole. Catherine was a daughter of Henry Pole, 11th Baron Montacute and Lady Jane Nevill. Jane was in turn a daughter of George Nevill, 4th Baron Bergavenny and his wife Margaret, daughter of Hugh Fenn.
He notably served as Lord Lieutenant of Warwickshire and of Gloucestershire and as Lord President of the Marches and of the Dominion of Wales. In 1618 he was created Earl of Northampton.
- Anne Compton (d. 1675), married Ulick Burke, 1st Marquess of Clanricarde
- Spencer Compton, 2nd Earl of Northampton (1601–1643)
In March 1610 Elizabeth's father died leaving a fortune, and a letter (purportedly) set outs her expectations from her husband. These included; £1,600 per year and £600 for charitable works; three horses of her own; two gentlewomen attendants and horses for them; six or eight gentlemen; two coaches one for herself another for her women each with a coachman and four horses, with carriages and carts for her things; twenty new gowns yearly; new furnishings in their houses including couches and canopies for her drawing chambers; he should finish building Castle Ashby House; and more signed "Eliza Compton".
Prince Henry's tournament
William Compton was a participant in the Accession Day tilts or tournaments at the royal court from 1589. When Prince Henry was made Prince of Wales in 1610, William distinguished himself at the tournament. He dressed as a shepherd knight and sat in a specially constructed "mount" or bower to accept challenges. An eyewitness reported:
He builded himself a bower upon the top of the wall next to St. James's Park, made in the manner of a sheepcote, and there he sat in a gray russet cloak and had a sheep crook in one hand as though he had been a shepherd, and through the top of the bower there stood up the mast of a ship gilded with gold and upon the top a pan with fire burning in it, as some thought with pitch and an iron mark to mark sheep. ...
Afterward, my Lord Compton descended from his sheepcote and mounted himself on a lofty steed, his men also attending him on horseback, every one wearing a hat of straw and their faces painted as black as the devil.
The shepherd's bower was designed by Inigo Jones. The historian Roy Strong identifies this performance as a revival of Elizabethan pastoral themes, related to the shepherd knight Phillisides of Philip Sydney's Arcadia
- Calendar State Papers Scotland, vol. 10 (Edinburgh, 1936), p. 331.
- John S. Brewer, The court of King James the First, vol. 2 (London, 1839), pp. 127-132.
- Reports on various manuscripts: William Cleverly Alexander, vol.3, HMC (1904), pp.259–263, here spelling modernised and abbreviated.
- Strong, Roy, Henry Prince of Wales, Thames & Hudson (1986), p.159: The drawing by Jones is in the Devonshire Collection at Chatsworth House.
- Kidd, Charles, Williamson, David (editors). Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage (1990 edition). New York: St Martin's Press, 1990,
Title last held byThe Earl of Warwick
| Lord Lieutenant of Warwickshire
The Earl of Northampton
The Lord Chandos
| Lord Lieutenant of Gloucestershire|
The Lord Gerard
| Lord President of Wales
Lord Lieutenant of Wales (less Glamorgan
and Monmouthshire), Herefordshire,
Shropshire and Worcestershire
The Earl of Bridgewater
The Earl of Worcester
| Lord Lieutenant of Glamorgan and Monmouthshire|
Sir John Lewis
| Custos Rotulorum of Cardiganshire
|Peerage of England|
|New creation|| Earl of Northampton
| Baron Compton|
(descended by acceleration)