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Sir Henry Vane

Vane, Sir Henry, 1589–1655, English courtier; father of the Puritan leader Sir Henry Vane, the younger. He gained the favor of James I, was knighted in 1611, and acquired wealth by the purchase of profitable offices. He served in every Parliament from 1614 to 1640 and was successively made comptroller (1629) and treasurer (1639) of the household and secretary of state (1640). He also served Charles I on diplomatic missions to Holland (1629–30) and to Gustavus Adolphus (1631). Vane's appointment as secretary of state was opposed by the earl of Strafford. In the latter's trial, Vane, with genuine or pretended reluctance, testified that Strafford had advocated the use of the Irish army against Parliament. As a result he lost favor with the king and was dismissed from office. Joining the parliamentary opposition, he served as lord lieutenant of Durham (1642) and as a member of the committee for both kingdoms. He never became important in the new government.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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