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Portrait of Anne Stafford, c. 1535, by Ambrosius Benson

Anne Hastings née Stafford (c. 1483 – 1544) was the youngest daughter of Henry Stafford, 2nd Duke of Buckingham and his wife Catherine Woodville. In 1510, her affair with King Henry VIII was the subject of a scandal at court.[1]



Anne Stafford was born around 1483 in Ashby, Leicestershire, England. In the year of her birth, her father was executed for treason by order of King Richard III. Her mother Catherine, a younger sister of Elizabeth Woodville, queen consort of King Edward IV, cared for Anne until her marriage in 1503.

Anne's siblings were: Edward Stafford, 3rd Duke of Buckingham; Henry Stafford, 1st Earl of Wiltshire; and Elizabeth Stafford, Countess of Sussex.

Her first cousins included (among others) John Tuchet, 8th Baron Audley, Thomas Grey, 1st Marquess of Dorset, Richard Grey, Elizabeth of York, Mary of York, Cecily of York, Edward V of England, Margaret of York, Richard of Shrewsbury, 1st Duke of York, Anne of York, George Plantagenet, Duke of Bedford, Catherine of York, Bridget of York and Elizabeth Herbert, 3rd Baroness Herbert.

Marriages and children

Anne married twice, first in 1503 to Sir Walter Herbert, a son of William Herbert, 1st Earl of Pembroke and Anne Deveureux. The marriage was childless. Her husband died on 16 September 1507.

Her second husband was George Hastings, whom she married in December 1509. He would become Earl of Huntingdon on 8 December 1529. They had eight children:


Anne entered into an affair with King Henry VIII around 1510, only one year after Henry wed Catherine of Aragon, and one year after Anne married Lord Hastings. Their adultery became a scandal when made public. Her brother, the Duke of Buckingham, was enraged. Her husband, Lord George Hastings, sent her to a convent. There are suggestions that her relationship with the King continued until 1513, however.

Afterward, Anne was involved with the man who had been the go-between during her relationship with the king – Sir William Compton. He wrote his will in 1522, leaving her many lands. He died in 1528 of the sweating sickness.

Fictional portrayals

Anna Brewster portrayed Anne Stafford in two 2007 episodes of the Showtime television series The Tudors. In the series, however, Anne is presented as the Duke of Buckingham's daughter, and is involved not with Henry VIII but with a fictionalized version of the King's future brother-in-law Charles Brandon, 1st Duke of Suffolk. She is also shown as dying of the same sweating sickness that killed Compton.

Anne is also a character in the Philippa Gregory novel, The Constant Princess.


  1. ^ The Mistresses of Henry VIII by Kelly Hart, p.27


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