Nicolas Laniere, 15441612 (aged 68 years)

Nicolas /Laniere/
Given names
Birth about 1544 48
MarriageLucreece BassanoView this family
February 13, 1571 (aged 27 years)
Death of a fatherJohn Jerome Laniere
November 25, 1572 (aged 28 years)
Birth of a sonClement Lanier
about 1598 (aged 54 years)
Death of a motherJane (Joan) Unknown

Death January 28, 1612 (aged 68 years)
Family with parents
Birth: 1496Bordeaux, France
Death: November 25, 1572London, England
Marriage Marriage
Birth: about 1544 48Rouen, France
Death: January 28, 1612East Greenwich, London, England
Family with Lucreece Bassano
Birth: about 1544 48Rouen, France
Death: January 28, 1612East Greenwich, London, England
Birth: September 24, 1556 46 41London, England
Death: January 4, 1634East Greenwich, Kent, Rhode Island, USA
Marriage MarriageFebruary 13, 1571All Hallows Barking Parish, London, England
28 years
Birth: about 1598 54 41London, England
Death: November 6, 1661East Greenwich, London, England
Shared note


Played the flute and the cornet. He was master flutist to Henri II of France. During the Protestant persecutions, he was a Huguenot to England with safe passage arranged for him by his patroness, the widowed queen Catherine de Medici. Nicholas arrived at the new court of Elizabeth I in London, England in 1561. This was the time of William Shakespeare, Ben Johnson, Francis Drake, Sir Water Raleigh. In court, marriages were arranged by the Queen. Nicholas was paired with Lucreece, thought to be the daughter of an Italian musician of the Royal Orchestra. Nicholas was made Master of Flutes. The couple prospered, acquiring a great deal of property in East Greenwich, Blackheath, and nearby. Three generations of this remarkable family served British royalty as court musicians, poets and artists. He was in the court of King Henry II of France, and also the court of Queen Elizabeth and King James of England, was the founder of the Lanier family of musicians and the ancestor of the American Laniers He moved to East Greenwich, Country Kent where he was one of the musicians to the court until his death in 1612. He was a very wealthy man, having extensive holdings in Blackheath, and the surrounding country; this section was south of the Thames, and about 5 miles east of the London Bridge. More About NICHOLAS LANIER: Fact 12: Will 20 Jan 1611, England, proved 1 July 1612 All property moveabe and immovable to wf Lucrece to John, to Alfonse, to Innocent, to Jerom, to Clement, to Andrea, 4 dau, wf Lucrece to be ex. wit: George Lane, Peter Guy Notes for LUCRETIA OR LUCREECE BASSANO: She was the daughter of the Bassano family of musicians who came to England to serve Henry VIII. They originated from the city of Bassano Del Grappa near Venice. More About LUCRETIA OR LUCREECE BASSANO: Fact 12: Will 10 Aug 1633, London, England, proved 17 Jan 1633 To three sons, Jeremy, Clement, and Andrea, Ellen Ferrabosso of E. Greenwich widow, to Frances Fox of E Greenwich another of my dau to Mary Lanier one other of my dau to Katherine Farand wf of Daniel Farrant of East Greenwich, and one of my dau to two other dau Frances and Mary. mentions premises devised by Sir Thomas Lake, Knight, to Nicholas Laneire my late husband dec. dau to be ex Wit: Jerom Laneire, Andrea Laneire, Clement Laneire, Alfonso Fferraboss, Henry Fferrabosso

Nicholas Lanier - originally Laniere, listed in some histories as Lasnier. In 1561 the Earl of Hertford was visiting in Paris, and met there, young Nicholas Laniere, who had been in the Court of the late King Henry II; he was recommended as a good flute player and also the cornet. He was considered to be sober, honest, and born at Rouen. He was engaged to serve as messenger and a replacement for Peter Guillaume, one of the Queen's flute players lately dead. Confirmation of his services under Henry II is to be found in the lists of "chantres et autres Jouers d'instruments" of the French King's Chambers, which include Nicholas Lasnier for the years of 1559 and 1560. During the Protestant persecutions in France, the Lanier family fled as Huguenots to England. It is said that safe passage was arranged by Queen Catherine de Medici. Nicholas arrived in 1561 and settled in St. Olave Parish, Hart Street, London. After arrival in England he served in the court of Queen Elizabeth I and King James of England He later moved to East Greenwich, County Kent, where he was one of the musicians to the Court until his death about 1612. He was a very wealthy man, having extensive holdings in Blackheath, and the surrounding country; this section was south of the Thames and about five miles east of the London Bridge. One of the many palaces was here, the Royal Hospital, and many other buildings of early importance. In early 1700 an old house was taken down; it was described as being fitted up for a theater, probably by the Laniers who were musicians and dramatists. His first wife's name is unknown, married sometime prior to 1565 in England. However, after an arrangement by the Queen, Nicholas married Lucreece Bassano in London on February 13, 1571. Lucreece was christened in London on September 24, 1556, the daughter of Antonio Bassano and Elena DeNazzi, who were originally from Bassano del Grappa, Veneto, Italy. Antonio Bassano was one of the Italian musicians in the Royal Orchestra. Nicholas and Lucreece had 10 children. Nicholas, who was in the Court of King Henry II of France, and also the Court of Queen Elizabeth, and King James of England, was the founder of the Lanier family of musicians, and the ancestor of the American Laniers. Their six sons all were musicians to the Queen and Kings; three of their four daughters married musicians. And of their grandchildren, at least eight of them became members of the Royal Orchestra, making three generations serving the Royal family musically. In 1604 Nicholas Lanier Sr. was named "Musician of the Flutes", and after his death about 1612, his son Andrea succeeded him "for life". The will of Nicholas Lanier Gent. was dated January 28, 1611/12, and proved July 1612, Rochester XIX, folia 514. "To Lucreece my wife, all my lands, and goods; to sons John, Alphonse, Innocent, Jerome, Clement, 12 shillings; to Andrea 20 pounds if he does not have my place; my four daughters, three of whom are unmarried, I leave to the discretion of my wife Lucreece, my sole executrix." Nicholas Lanier and his sons were a talented and accomplished family; his grandson, Nicholas the Younger, was the best known, and the most versatile. The served the Royal Household for three generations, and left many descendants who have inherited their unusually remarkable musical and artistic ability." *Source: LANIER by Louise Ingersoll The name of Lanier is derived from the ancient French tongue, and means of French descent, and is from the province of Gascony in southern France. However older records show a Tuscany family in northern Italy of the same name, and several genealogists claim that the family moved from Tuscany to Gascony after the Crusades. The Laniers were Protestants, and left France to escape the early persecutions. Protestantism began in 1555, and the height of the persecutions was reached in the massacre of St. Bartholomew on the eve of August 24, 1572. It was in 1560 that the conspiracy began; one party hoped to enrich themselves by the estates of the heretics who were executed, or banished; and the other party hoped to gain the favor of the people by their punishment. The estates of those who fled were sold, their children who remained behind were exposed to the greatest sufferings. France lost thousands of useful and rich inhabitants whose industry, wealth, and skills found a welcome reception in foreign countries. To prevent the emigration of the Protestants, the frontiers were guarded with the utmost vigilance; yet more than 500,000 fled to England, Holland, Switzerland, and Germany. The Laniers were Huguenots to London, and are well recorded in the books of the Huguenot Society of London; but could not be called Huguenots to American, having been naturalized Englishmen for three generations. However, their descendants are eligible to the Huguenot Society. During the Civil War, the fortunes of the Laniers and others loyal to the Crown declined sharply. They had lost their appointments, suffered privation, even starvation, and often imprisonment. "In 1655, about fifty of those formerly in the service of King Charles, prepared a petition, after they had tried all other means in vain to get bread for themselves and their families, hoping to arouse pity for their plight. They only decided to take this last step after a number of their kin died of starvation." "Thomas Lanier (son of Andrea, grandson of Nicholas) petitioned King Charles II to be restored to his third post, which had been guaranteed him, and also his father, who had been jailed in 1643. They had given their all in the King's cause." . *Source: Annals of English Court Music by Willibald Nagel, 1863.