Sir Henry Wood, kt 1644, bt 1660 (1597-1671). Son and grandson of courtiers; himself in court since 1623; Clerk-Comptroller of the Board of Green Cloth from 1644 (Clerk from 1662); Treasurer to Henrietta-Maria from 1664; member of Catherine of Braganza's council from 1662; M.P. Hythe 1661-1671. An eccentric and unpopular official. His (second) wife (m. 1651) was Mary, daughter of John Gardiner; Maid of Honor to Henrietta-Maria, dresser and woman of the bedchamber to Queen Catherine.
What we need to know about Sir Henry Wood MP:
Wood entered the household of Prince Charles as a child.
He was knighted at Oxford during the Civil War, when he was acting as clerk-comptroller of the green cloth and chosen to accompany Queen Henrietta Maria to France as her treasurer and receiver-general.
He spent most of the Interregnum in Paris, although in 1649 he compounded for his delinquency as a Royalist with a fine of £273. He was in Paris in November 1651 when he married his second wife, Mary Gardiner, a maid of honor to the queen mother.
Nevertheless, during the Interregnum Wood was able to expand his Suffolk estate.
At the Restoration Wood offered Sir Edward Hyde £500 to be continued as clerk comptroller. He was soon promoted to clerk of the green cloth, and granted the valuable manor of Tottenham Court at an annual rent of £66 13s. 4d.
At the general election of 1661 he failed to be returned, but
after the death of Phineas Andrews MP in September 1661, which created a vacancy at Hythe, he succeeded in entering Parliament after running unopposed. But he refused to visit Hythe, so finally commissioners were sent to London to swear him in.
He was an inactive Member of the Cavalier Parliament.
With his experience in Queen Mother Henrietta Maria’s household, Sir Henry Wood, 1st Bart. was selected to fetch Catherine of Braganza from Portugal.
On his return with the new queen consort in May 1662, James Butler, Duke of Ormonde wrote to Charles II that ‘he is universally cursed and as universally curses all volunteer eaters’.
His unpopularity continued. His attempts to economize in the Household provoked Sir Herbert Price to urge Ormonde to return to England ‘to defend us against this mad dog’.
His appearance was odd, his conduct eccentric, and he did not often address the House.
But on 25 Nov. 1664 he was determined to present a petition from Sir Henry Chester about the Bedfordshire election. He refused to give way to Lord Cramond, Thomas Richardson, and, according to Thomas Clifford:
"the novelty of Sir Henry Wood’s standing up carried it against my lord, and he made as methodical and as rational a discourse as the matter could bear."
Andrew Marvell described him as one of the government whips in the excise debate:
“Then damning cowards ranged the vocal plain,
Wood these commands, knight of the horn and cane,
Still his hook-shoulder seems the blow to dread,
And under’s armpit he defends his head.
The posture strange men laughed at, of his poll
Hid with his elbow like the spice he stole.
Headless St. Denis so his head does bear,
And both of them alike French martyrs were.”
highlights from https://www.historyofparliamentonline.org/volume/…
Chart showing the number of references in each month of the diary’s entries.