Stanley, Ferdinando, 5th Earl of Derby -1594)
Ferdinando Stanley, Lord Strange, was the eldest son of Henry Stanley, 4th Earl and Margaret, only daughter of Henry Clifford, Earl of Cumberland and his first wife, Alianore, daughter and coheir of Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, and Mary, Dowager Queen of France and sister of Henry VIII. He was educated at St John's College, Oxford, where he matriculated in 1572 at the age of twelve, and graduated M.A. 17 September 1589. As a boy he was called to Court by Queen Elizabeth, but held no office. In 1579 he married Alice, daughter of Sir John Spencer of Althorp in Northamptonshire. They had three daughters. He acted as Deputy Lieutenant of Lancashire and Cheshire for his father from 1585, and during the Armada affair was Mayor of Liverpool and raised a troop of horse. In 1589 he was summoned to Parliament in his father's Barony of Strange. A poet himself and a friend and patron of poets, he succeeded his father as 5th Earl in 1593. In the same year he was pressed to become a claimant to the English throne, but refused and handed over the messenger, Edward Hacket, to justice, and when he died after an illness of sixteen days it was rumoured that it was the result of witchcraft. In the default of male issue he was succeeded by his brother William. The library of the Earls of Derby at Knowsley was largely sold by auction at Christies in four sales on 19 and 20th October and 17th and 18th December 1953 and 23rd and 24th March and 3rd and 4th May 1954.