The Wortley Family: Social and Political Tensions in 13th-19th Century England
University of Delaware
The Wortley Family was a prominent noble family which dates to the time of the Norman Conquests and still exists today. While many families claim this is true of theirs, only a small handful can actually claim this to be true. The Wortley Family provide a unique canvas to explore how a family can exist for so long. They show historians what kinds of strategies families will use to survive, and thrive through social and political changes where one wrong move could mean the end to your family name. This paper traces the strategies used by members of the Wortley family through marriage alliances, being a ruthless leader, staying loyal to the monarchy and traveling the world.