Son of Thomas, earl of Arundel, England. Grandson of Saint Philip Howard. Raised Catholic in England in a time when the faith was being persecuted. Married Mary Stafford in 1637. Viscount of Stafford in England. Baron Stafford in 1640. Exiled in 1642 for political reasons, and lived in the Netherlands. Undertook diplomatic missions in Flanders and Switzerland for Emperor Ferdinand. His family was impoverished when the English Parliment impounded his lands. Arrested in Heidelberg in 1653 and Utrect in 1656 for apparently political reasons, but he was acquitted of all charges.
In 1660 his family property was reinstated, the fortunes of his family turned around, and they returned to England. Accused of complicity in the “Popish Plot”, he was sent to the Tower of London on 25 October 1678. Imprisoned for two years before they bothered to try him, he was condemned before the trial started. Though he had no involvement in the “Plot”, he was martyred for being an influential, high-profile Catholic.
- “Blessed William Howard“. CatholicSaints.Info. 27 December 2013. Web. 31 March 2015. <>