Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Wendy, Thomas

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WENDY, THOMAS (1500?–1560), court physician, born between May 1499 and May 1500, was the second son of Thomas Wendy of Clare, Suffolk (Addit. MS. 19154, f. 342). He was educated at Cambridge, graduating B.A. in 1518–19 and on Lady day following was elected fellow of Gonville Hall (afterwards Gonville and Caius College). He proceeded M.A. in 1522, and then went abroad to study medicine; he graduated M.D. at Ferrara, and was incorporated in this degree at Cambridge in 1527 (Venn, Biogr. Hist. of Gonville and Caius Coll. p. 24). He was subsequently appointed physician to Henry VIII, who on 12 June 1541 granted to him and his wife the manor of Haslingfield, Cambridgeshire (Letters and Papers of Henry VIII, xvi. 947). Wendy plays some part in Foxe's story of Gardiner's alleged intrigue against Catherine Parr for heresy (Maitland, Essays, 1849, pp. 319–21). He attended Henry VIII on his deathbed, was one of the witnesses to his will, and was bequeathed 100l. by the king. He was continued as royal physician with a salary of 100l. by Edward VI, who made him further grants of land (Acts P. C. ii. 432; Lit. Remains of Edward VI, p. cxcvii). On 12 Nov. 1548 he was appointed one of the ecclesiastical visitors of Oxford, Cambridge, and Eton, and on 6 May 1552 was again commissioned to visit Eton (cf. Dixon, iii. 120). He was admitted fellow of the College of Physicians on 22 Dec. 1551, and became an elect in 1552. He attended Edward VI on his deathbed, and was continued as royal physician by Mary, to whom he performed a like service. On 26 March 1554 he was returned to parliament for St. Albans, and for Cambridgeshire on 10 Oct. 1555. He was appointed an ecclesiastical visitor by Elizabeth in 1559, and died at Haslingfield on 11 May 1560 in the sixty-first year of his age; he was buried at Haslingfield on the 27th. He was a friend of Dr. John Caius (1510–1573) [q. v.], who dedicated to him in 1557 the first of his ‘Galeni Pergameni libri;’ he gave many medical and classical books to the library of Gonville and Caius College, founded a fellowship there, and is commemorated in the college by a service held on 11 May.

Wendy left no issue by his wife Margery, and was succeeded by his nephew Thomas, son of his elder brother John. Thomas was sheriff of Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire in 1573–4, 1585–6, and 1602–3 (Lists of Sheriffs, 1898, p. 14); in 1586–7 he was in trouble with the privy council for refusing the oath (Heywood and Wright, Cambr. Trans. ii. 420–9); he added his lands at Barrington, Cambridgeshire, to his uncle's endowment of Gonville and Caius College. His descendants are given in Le Neve's ‘Pedigrees of Knights’ (Harl. Soc. p. 17).

[Authorities cited; Sloane MSS. 1301 f. 151, 3562 f. 51; Cal. State Papers, Dom., 1547–80, p. 11 (indexed as Hendy); Davy's Suffolk Coll. in Addit. MS. 19154; Cooper's Athenæ Cantabr. i. 205; Munk's Coll. of Phys. i. 50; Dixon's Hist. vol. iii. (indexed as Windrie); Lit. Rem. of Edward VI (Roxburghe Club); Hist. MSS. Comm. 13th Rep. App. iv. 414, 441; Baker's St. John's, i. 125, 146, ii. 628; Acts of the Privy Council.]

A. F. P.