Although this account concerns Robert de Umfraville, alias Umframville, known without foundation as "Robert with-the-beard", who was mentioned in 1207 by his supposed great-grandson, Richard, when claiming the wardship of Henry Batail by reason of the feoffment which Robert made to Gilbert Batail, Henry Batail's ancestor, it must necessarily commence with some notice of the subtly connected network of the Crispin family of Normandy, for, the case will be made that Robert de Umfraville was of their stock. People were less 'isolated' at this time; their ties of kinship determining who they married, where they held land, which lord they served; these factors being interdependent, and any understanding of them can only be gleaned through consideration of their complex associations.

The castle of the Bec was located 10 miles from Le Havre, in a valley crossed by the Lézarde river, which outlets into the ocean at Honfleur. The castle was variously called Bec-Vauquelin, Bec-de-Mortimer, and Bec-Créspin, with these names overlapping in the first decades of the eleventh-century. The lordship of Bec was held by Gilbert Crispin I. whose family's sobriquet was "hérissée" (Milo Crispin, How The Holy Virgin Appeared To William Crispin The Elder And On The Origin Of The Crispin Family, ed. Migne, cols. 735-744, 1856). I would suggest that the name Bec-Vauquelin gives clue to the probable ancestry of the Ferrers family. Vauquelin de Ferrière, the French name of Walkelin de Ferrers, was lord of Ferrières-Saint-Hilaire, cant. Bernay. His son, Henry de Ferrers, joint leader of a force at Hastings with Gilbert Crispin II., castellan of Tillières, received his Domesday holdings over a period of time, receiving lands in the Appletree Wapentake, circa 1071,on land formerly held by Hugh d'Avranches: "Gulielmus primus, anno 1070, Henrico Gualchelini de Ferrariis filio, castrum Stutesburiae, quod Hugo de Abrincis primus tenuerat, concessit" (Tutbury Cart.).

The significance of Hugh d'Avranches to this account will be made evident; suffice for now to mention that he was the son of "Richard fils de Toustain" (WJ. VII.6, p. 174), with Toustain being "Toustain surnommé Goz, fils d'Ansfroi le Danois" (ibid.). "Ansfroi le Danois" in this instance refers to the son of someone identically named, who was also the father of Osmund de Goz. Toustain's brother is identified (Recherches sur la Domesday) as Wimund d'Avranches "Vuitmundus vicecomes", who witnessed the charter dated Aug. 1027 under which Richard II. Duke of Normandy donated property to the abbey of Bernay. Wimund was the father of (1) Robert d'Avranches, who married as her first husband, Maude, daughter of Ranulf Avenel and his wife Alice, and (2) William d'Avranches, sp. Emma FitzGilbert de Brionne, daughter of Baldwin FitzGilbert de Brionne de Meules and Albreda le Goz d'Avranches, daughter of the above mentioned Osmond de Goz. Baldwin FitzGilbert was the son of Gilbert de Brionne, overlord, as will be shown, of the children os Gilbert Crispin I. These two Gilberts are often wrongly shown to be synonomous. Gilbert de Brionne's niece was the wife of "Baldric the Teuton"; their daughter marrying Gilbert Crispin I. I will make the case that these connections to Baldric have direct bearing on the ancestry of Robert de Umfraville.

William and Emma FitzGilbert de Brionne had issue (see notes on Macey, as follows): 1. Lesceline d'Avranches, who married William Paynel, lord of Moutiers, near Lisieux, the caput of the Crispin family. Their son, Raoul Paynel, Sheriff of Yorkshire, was, a man of Ilbert de Lacey. 2. Robert d' Avranches , who held the fief of Macey, south of Avranches (Loyd, 'Origins', pp. 11-12); who married, firstly, a daughter of Gelduin de Dol, and, secondly, Maud de Monville, daughter of William d'Arques and Beatrix Malet, daughter of William Malet and Hesilia Crispin. By either he was the father of Denise d'Avranches, who married Hasculphe de Subligny, from Subligny, in canton Haye-Pesnel, held by Hugh d'Avranches as 'tenant-in-chief' (Keats-Rohan; the Prosopography, p. 11).


1. Crispin de Bec (Crespin Ansgothus*), sp. Heloise de Guines. *Derived from ON Asgautr; OD Asgut; Angot and Ansgot being common derivatives. The name equates to "divine Goth."

1.1. Hellouin de Bec. Hellouin founded the Abbey of Bec toward the 37th. year of his life, i.e. 1034. 'Son père tirait son origine de ces Danois qui les premiers conquirent la Normandie, et sa mère était liée de proche parenté avec les ducs de la Gaule Belgique, que les modernes appellent le pays de Flandre. Son père s'appelait Ansgot, et sa mère Héloïse. Gilbert, comte de Brionne, petit-fils de Richard I., duc de Normandie, par son fils le prince Godefroi, fit élever Herluin auprès de lui, et le chérissait particulièrement entre tous les seigneurs de sa cour' (Francois Guizot, Collection des mémoires relatifs à l'histoire de France, p. 146, 1826). A notion of the some of the fiefs held by Hellouin's family is given in the following text: 'Bonneville sur le Bec, Eure, est dans le canton Montfort-sur-Risle. Nous avons le texte de la charte de donation (Lanfr. op., Docum, t. ii., p. 350, Oxford, 1844). Hellouin y donne, en présence et de l'aveu de se deux frères, le tiers qui lui appartenait de la terre de Bonneville et de se dépendances, les terres du Petit-Quevilli, Seine-Inférieure, et de Surci, Eure, ainsi que la terre de Cernai-sur-Orbec, Calvados. Cette charte ne peut remonter moins haut que les premiers mois de 1035. cf. w. Genet,. dans D. Bouquet, t. xi,. p. 35' (Charles Remusat, Saint Anselme de Cantobéry, p. 27, 1856).

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That Hellouin was seen by some to have descended from his knightly position in Gilbert de Brionne's household, to which he had been fostered by his father, is represented by the following text: 'In the wooded valley of the Rille, not far from Rouen. A rude old soldier, named Herluin, had with some trouble obtained permission of his feudal lord to devote himself and his patrimony to religion; and had retired to this spot with his mother and a few companions, over whom he presided as superior. All day long he was employed in building: most of the night he spent in learning to read, and in getting the Psalter by heart; his mother baked for the monks, washed their clothes, and performed all the menial offices of the house. Herluin was with his own hands building the bakehouse of the monastery (Richard William Church, Essays and reviews, p. 138, 1834).

In a charter of Hellouin, after describing himself as 'Herluinus filius Ansgoti', he adds,'adstantibus et laudantibus fratibus meis Odone et Rogero.' These brothers gave concessions of paternal inheritance to Le Bec, in lieu of which Roger received a horse worth 100 shillings, and Odo placed his son in le Bec (G. R. Evans, The works of Gilbert Crispin, Abbot of Westminster, p. 190, 1986).

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1.2. Roger de Bec.

1.3. Odone de Bec.

1.4. Gilbert Crispin I., sp. Gunnor d'Anjou, second-cousin of William the Conqueror. Gunnor d'Anjou was the daughter of Baldric the Teuton, Lord of Bacqueville-en-Caux, great-grandson of Robert de Vermandois, and Alix de Brionne, niece of Gilbert de Brionne, as above mentioned (W. Pickering, Histories of Noble British Families, vol. ii. 1846). Gilbert Crispin - 'who because of the shape of his hair was to be known as Crispin. For in his early youth he had hair that was brush-like and stiff and sticking out ("hérissée"), and in a manner of speaking bristling like the needles of a pine tree. This gave him the name of Crispin, from 'crispus pinus, 'pine hair'. Gilbert Crispin I. was also noted by Milo Crispin as being 'of renowned origin and nobility' (Milo Crispin, ibid.). Duke Robert I. established Gilbert Crispin at Tillières to defend this important border castle. Hesilia Crispin; held in Suffolk as a widow 1071-1086, sp. William Malet; held on Yorkshire and East Anglia, fl. 1061-1071 (Harper-Bill, Anglo-Norman Studies, p. 162, 1996). See 'Alternative View', as follows. Beatrix Malet, fl. 1079-1092, sp. William, Vicomte de Arques (Vivien Brown, Eye Priory Cartulary, p. 6, 1992); great-uncle of William de Roumare, the patron of Walter II de Bec in Lincolnshire, and the nephew of Walter Giffard I.(The third of Gunnor's sisters became the wife of Osborn de Bolebec, by whom he had the first Walter Giffard, and Geoffrey, the father of William de Arques).

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In 1166, Godfrey "de Dun" ("Duna") held four knights' fees of the new feoffment of William de Roumare, who, prior to that date, held in Bourg-Dun, arr. Dieppe, cant. Offranville (Loyd, 'Origins', p. 38). Bourg-Dun had more anciently been the fief of Baldric the Teuton (Cal. Docs. France, 87 and 88); the father-in-law, as stated, of Gilbert Crispin I. Offranville is situated 7 miles from Bacqueville.

Dalbury is described in the Doomsday Survey as a hamlet of Mickleover, belonging to the abbot of Burton, and was part of the lands of Henry de Ferrers; held of him by Robert "de Dun", whose likely descendant, Robert "de Dun", was lord of Dalbury in the time of Henry II. (Glover, Hist. Derby, v. ii, p. 337, 1829). This family of Dun remained in the service of the Earls de Ferrars for several generations. The manor of Breadsal, which they held, came to the Curzons through the marriage of an heiress, but the younger branches of the family long remained in Derbyshire. In 31 Henry IIL (Rolls called Tower Records, but properly forming part of the Coram Rege and Assize Rolls) there was an assize to enquire whether Sampson le Dun (the latter Robert's son) and Galf de Skefington had disseized Earl Robert de Ferrars of 15 tofts, 2 carucates, and 24 bovates, 2 mills and 4 acres of wood, and IS. and one pound pepper rent in Breadsal, which he claimed to hold of the feoffment of Jacobus de Audeley. A general principle is, thus, established: the 'Crispin' family had strong connections to Offranville, also known as Offramville. It is the 'Crispin'family that provides the likely ancestry of Robert "de Dun", as will be explained.


Ambrumesnil, Appeville-le-Petit,* Arques-la-Bataille, Aubermesnil-Beaumais, Le Bourg-Dun, Colmesnil, Manneville, Hautot-sur-Mer, Longueil, Offranville, Ouville-la-Rivière, Quiberville, Rouxmesnil,** Saint-Aubin-sur-Scie, Saint-Denis-d'Aclon, Sainte-Marguerite-sur-Mer, Sauqueville, Tourville-sur-Arques, Varengeville-sur-Mer. *In 1086, Walter de Appeville held land in Kent of William de Arques. Appeville is 4 miles north-west of Arques. **Propriétaire et maître était un guerrier Scandinave, nommé Rou ou Rollon. A fief of Rouxmesnil is also to be found in Bec-aux-Cauchois (Yvetot); the caput of Ralph (Rou ou Rollon) de Bec; I suggest he held in both places, and that the various descendants of Crispin de Bec had intertwined tenurial associations.


Situé en partie sur une hauteur qu'environne une vaste campagae, et en partie dans une charmante vallée qu'arrose la rivière que l'on appelle la Vienne, le bourg de Bacqueville se trouve, au milieu d'une contrée fertile, à 4 lieues 1/2 (sud-est) de Dieppe. Son ancien nom était Bacqueville-la-Martel; quelques chartes latines des XIe et XIIe siècles portent Baconis Villa; dès l'époque Carlovingienne, on disait Bascheryvilla. Ce dernier nom, qui est le plus vieux, paraît être le véritable. Il doit venir de Basquer ou Baucher, que l'on retrouve également dans celui de Boscherville (Bacherivilla).

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cont. Emma de Arques, sp. (1) Nigel de Monville (Archaeologia, v. xxxi., pp. 216-237). (Emma de Arques, sp.(2) Manasses, Count of Guines. Matilda de Monville, sp. Rualon d'Avranches, sheriff of Kent in 1130. By Michaelmas 1102 at the latest Rualon d'Avranches had been granted the manor of Stanton Harcourt in Oxfordshire (BRAN ii. 528); perhaps in custody. Maud de Arques, sp. William de Tancarville. William Crispin I., who, according to his likely nephew, Milo Crispin, was 'of outstanding manners, the best known of all; with military fame he rose above almost all his contemporaries. His famous prowess made many envious. William, duke of the Normans, called William Crispin to the castle of Neaufles and gave him, and his son after him, the castle and the vicomte of the Vexin. There William established his home to ward off French invasions. He revisited, however, the land he held elsewhwere in Normandy in the district of Lisieux' (Milo Crispin, ibid.. William Crispin I. had a wife named Eve de Montfort, 1009-1099, 'who suited him well on account of her origin and manners. Eve de Montfort bore him Gilbert, abbot of Westminster, William Crispin II., and many others.' Eve de Montfort died in a fire at Le Bec in 1099, aged 90, and was buried there, next to her husband. It is recorded of her that she had to do penance for her love of lapdogs! (Adolphe Porée, Histoire de L'Abbaye du Bec, 1901) Eve de Montfort was the sister of Norman frontier lord Simon de Montfort, 1020-1087 (W. Frolich, trsl., The Letters of Anselme of Canterbury, 1990-1994, nos. 22, 98, 118, and 147). William Crispin II., sp. Agnes de Mauvoisin (Mathieu - Reserches Sur Les Premiers Comtes De Dammartin, 19, 60, 1996). William Crispin II., 1050-1133, Vicomte of the Vexin. He is reported in some accounts as being present at the Battle of Hastings, 1066, as a young squire. He was alive in 1132, being noted in charters as holding Colleville as tenant of Ranulph of Chester, his distant kinsman. He was an Anglo-Norman lord who held land in Wetherby, Wheldrake, Coxwold, and Goodmanham in Yorkshire, and in Ancroft in Northumberland, as mesne-tenant of William de Percy. 'William Crispin the younger gave the tithe of the mill and of his desmene which he had in Le Mesnil-Hubert, the church and tithe of Druicort, what Robert Malcovernant held of him, one house in Livarot with all its customs, half of the church and tithe of Bournainville' (David Bates, ed., Regum Anglo-Normannorum, the Acta of William I, 1066-1087, 1998). Manasser Crispin.

1.5. Ralph (Rollo)de Bec. Ralph's family held two lordships; Bec-aux-Cauchois and Bec-de-Mortagne,* both fiefs of the ducal domain of Fecamp, held by the bailiff of Caux, which was a Giffard prerogative. Walter II Giffard was the leading magnate in the pays de Caux (his grandmother was a sister of the Duchess Gunnora), and Ralph's family held under him (Medieval prosopography, Volumes 24-25, p. 176, Medieval Institute Publications, Western Michigan University, 2003). *In canton Goderville; Goderville, Angerville-Bailleul, Annouville , Amberville-Ia.Rénault, Baigneville, Bec-de-Mortagne, Benarville, Bornambuse, Bretteville, Bréauté, Cretot, Daubeuf-le-Sec, Ecrainville, Emalleville, Goderville, Gonfreville-Caillot, Grainville-l'Alouette, le Hertelay, Houquetot, Saint-Maclou, Manneville, Manteville, Mirville, Sauseusemare, Saint-Sauveur, Serville, Tennemare, Tocqueville, Vattetot sous Beaumont, Vilmesnil, Virville, Ymauville.



1.5.1. William de Bec. He held Bec-aux-Cauchois of Walter Giffard II. Robert de Bec-Mortagne ("Rotbertus de Moritania filius Willelmi de Becco") ordered the building of La Vieille-Tour, the fortress of Bec-Mortagne, in 1088; his vil was Vieux-Chatel (Bul. de la Soc. des Ant. de Norm., tome iii. p. 75). Robert de Bec-Mortagne was still living in 1131.

1.5.2. Mathew de Mortagne, tenant in chief of 6 counties, and lord of Bec-Mortagne; he was also known as "Maci de Moretania." He nominated his nephew, Robert, son of William de Bec, who held Bec-aux-Cauchois, to be his successor.

1.5.3. Ralph de Bec. He returned to Holy Trinity of Rouen in 1091 the tithes of Amfreville he had appropriated, an act witnessed by (his cousin) Gilbert Crispin II.; "through Amfreville (Amfreville-la-mi-Voie, Rouen; M.S) and Blosseville he can be linked to Walter; they were probably brothers" (Med. Pros. v. 24-5, p. 192, 2003).

1.5.4. Turstin de Bec, alias Turstin Goz. From Bec-aux-Cauchois. Tenant of Walter Giffard II.(Domesday). "Thurstin, son of Rollo" (Ralph) de Bec, benefactor of the Abbey of Boscherville (Reg. II., 1012). "To summarise, Walter de Bec and Turstin son of Rolf were brothers from Bec-aux-Cauchois, where their overlord was Walter Giffard II., who also became their most important benefactor in England" (ibid.).

1.5.5. Walter de Bec-aux-Cauchois. Tenant of Walter Giffard II.(Domesday). Donated lands in Gueuteville (Amfreville-Gueuteville; Yvetot), with Turstin de Bec, to Boscherville (a Tankerville foundation) in c. 1050 (R.A.D.N. 197). He expanded his territory from Buckinghamshire into Norfolk, where he married into the family of Grandcourt, whose patron was William de Warenne. Walter married a daughter of Hugh de Grandcourt, a contemporary of William II. count of Eu,* sp.(2) Helisende, d. o. Richard le Goz, vicomte d'Avranches, and sister of Hugh d'Avranches, Earl of Chester. The family of Richard le Gois** were the hereditary holders of Haye-Pesnel, in which was Herissiere. Grandcourt was a fief of the counts of Eu. *Hugh de Grandcourt was most likely the brother or cousin of William II., Count of Eu, that is, either the son of Robert, comte d'Eu (1. Richard I., duke of Normandy. 1.1. William I. count of Eu; sp. Lesceline, d. o. Turketil and Adeline de Montfort-sur-Risle. 1.1.1. Robert I., Count of Eu, founded Treport, 1060; or of Gautier de Grandcourt (dit "le Barbu"), noted as signatory to donations of Robert I., Count of Eu, in 1037, and, pobably, Robert's brother. His sobriquet reflected a Montfort-sur-Risle connection. His descendants, as Deyville, established themselves in Nottinghamshire.** His niece, Dyonisia, married Hasculphe de Subligny (who held in Haye-Pesnel); their daughter, Lesceline, married Foulques Paynel II. Mabel de Bec, sp. Stephen de Cameis, lord of Flockthorpe, Norfolk. (ibid. p. 181). Walter "de Amfreville,"* from which it may be assumed that he held lands at Amfreville, near Rouen, and that these lands were the dower of his mother. In c. 1123, "Walt de Amfrauilla" witnessed a deed of Walter de Gloucester, probably the conqueror of South Monmouthshire. He appears in 1130 and 1140 under the same name as holding lands in Suffolk, Essex and Cornwall. *A branch of the Umfreville familly remained in Normandy, descended from Walter de Amfreville, who was at the battle of Gisors 1097 (Ord. Vitalis, 767). A branch of the Umfreville familly is a phrase that is accurate, no doubt, yet consider that Walter de Amfreville's uncle, Robert, as follows, may well have held Bourg-Dun in Offranville; a very plausible source of Umfraville, and he may have been synonomous with a 'first' Robert de Umfraville. Robert de Bec-aux-Cauchois. Held of the Peverels (Stapleford, 2 carucates, six bovates), and Henry Ferrers in Derbyshire, and Herissiere, Haye-Pesnel, of the Peverels, under Hugh d'Avranches, in Avranches. Another patron of Robert's in 1080 was Walter Giffard II. (Neustria Pia, p. 402). Robert de Heriz I. Robert de Heriz I., ob. ante. 1128, who held Stapleford, Tibshelf, Wingfield, and Oxcroft, was mesne tenant of William Peverel. Robert was Sheriff of Nottingham, 1110-1122 (Judith A. Green, The Government of England under Henry I., p. 221, 1989). He was a King's Commissioner who witnessed charters of Robert de Ferrers, 1st. Earl Derbys. He was "probably son of the Domesday tenant" ("Robert"), who held Tibshelf and Stapleford (Notts.) under William Peverel (G. Turbutt, A history of Ogston, p. 226, 1975).

(Roger le Poer, Bishop of Salisbury, ob. 11 Dec 1139. He was originally priest of a small chapel near Caen in Normandy. He was called "Roger, priest of the church of Avranches" in his notification of election to the bishopric.

A chief minister in Henry I's reign, he was elected to the see of Salisbury in 1102 and became a leading figure in royal government. Roger built the castles at Devizes, Malmesbury and Sherborne, as well as at Kidwelly. Following the death of Hywel ap Goronwy in 1106 Roger secured control of SW Wales and duly reorganized this as the marcher lordship of Kidwelly. The foundation of Kidwelly Priory was part of the Norman process of conquest and consolidation – castle, borough and monastery.

Roger reformed and reorganized royal government and may have been responsible for the inaugration of the Pipe Rolls (Kemp). Following Henry's death in 1135 Roger supported the new king, Stephen, and he and his family were rewarded for their loyalty. But c. 1138 they fell from royal favour when it was alleged that they planned to renounce their fealty to Stephen and support the Empress. Roger died soon thereafter of a quartan fever, caused by his recent maltreatment. But many who resented his rise to power saw his decline as Divine justice.

His concubine was Matilde de Ramsbury.

"Les Heriz descendaient par les femmes de Roger de Pauvre" (Société d'archéologie, 'Revue de l'Avranchin', p. 388, 1934) "Le Sieur de Heriz a construit le château Hérissière (la Rochelle)" (ibid.). Arms: d'argent, à la bande d'azur, chargée de trois molettes d'éperon d'or, à la bordure engrêlée de gueules (ibid.). Dictionnaire héraldique de Charles de Grandmaison - "Heris, d'argent, à la bande d'azur, chargée de trois molettes d'éperon d'or, à la bordure engrêlée de gueules." The later Vicomtes de Caudebec bore: "de gueules à la bande d'argent accompagnée de trois molettes d'éperon de même 3, 2 et 1." (D.N.).

I can only conclude that Robert I. de Heriz married a daughter of Roger le Poer, alias Roger de Pauvre, or Poor; as shown hereinafter, this may not have been his only wife).


                        NEAR STAPLEFORD Geoffrey de Heriz. When William Peverel I. founded the Priory of Lenton, in the first decade of the twelfth-century, donators to it were his feudatories in Avranches; "les hommes de Guillaume Peverel sont du diocèse d'Avranches", being "Le premier était Avenel,* Raoul Malherbe, Norman de Saint Patrice, Geoffroy de Heriz, Adelelme ou Adelée, Robert de Mortain (Société d'archéologie et d'histoire de la Manche, 1992, Identification des notables de l'Avranchin et du Cotentin cités dans le livre noir de l'abbaye de la Lucerne, 1143-1309, p. 56). Geoffroy de Heriz donated to Lenton two-thirds of his tithes in Stapleford (Mon. Anglic. v. 111b). The Heriz family held the fief of La Hérissiere in La Rochelle, situated six miles from Avranches, in the canton of Haye-Pesnel, from whence also came the Paynels, Beauchamps, Earls of Warwick and Worcester, and the family of Subligny, founders of the Abbey of Lucerne. La Hérissiere was a 'fief de Haubert', that is, held of the ducal family (D.N. V. XI. P. 379, 1776). It was also called La Rochelle-le-Hericiere (ibid.), and "la Rochelle-Ambleville", where Guillaume St. Jean's tenant in 1162 was Roger Heriz (Dubosc Cart. 5-7). 1162: Charter l'abbaye de la Luserne Le seigneur de St-Jean combla ce monastère de ses bienfaits ... Robert Heriz (grandson of Robert de Heriz I.) et son fils Roger firent des dons considérables dans la paroisse de la Rochelle ... Robert Heriz ... "épouse Agnès" ... Robert de Heriz II., obit. 1198, Sherriff of Nottingham, who paid relief in 1181 to obtain his brother William's lands. married Agnes Alcher. Agnes, the daughter and co-heiress of Gilbert Alcher, who held land in Sudbury, Derbyshire. Walter de Bec II.



It is highly probable that the Robert of Domesday was synonomous with the "Robert" who was Domesday tenant of Henry de Ferrers of the manor of Hilton (Appletree Wapentake), which "was afterwards in the family of de Bec" (Dugdale's Monasticon, vol. ii. p. 622): Ernald de Bec was enfeoffed of half a knight's fee by Robert de Ferrers, Ist. Earl Derbys between 1135-1139 (RB 338). Ernald was still living in 1177 (P.R. 23, Henry II. 61). His son, Geoffrey de Bec gave notice to his lord, William de Ferrers, Earl of Derby, that he has given one carucate of land in Hatton (adjoining Hilton) in Marston upon Dove, Derbys., to William Calchon, date 1177-1195 (The Publications of the Northamptonshire Record Society, volume 15, p. 144, 1950).

The Robert of Domesday was also styled "Robert de Dun", as mentioned above, noted as donator in the foundation charter of Tutbury Priory (founded by Henry Ferrers), and in subsequent charters of that house. The Robert of Domesday was also likely to have been Robert de Bec (aux-Cauchois), whose family, through Baldric the Teuton, were connected with Offranville. A part of the Norman honour of the Ferrers was near St-Aubin-sur-Mer, Seine-Inf., arr. Yvetot, cant. Fontaine-de-Dun (Le Prevost, Mem. et Notes ... de Eure, ii. 100). Bourg-Dun is 2 miles south-east of St. Aubin. It is probable that "Robert de Dun" was Henry de Ferrer's tenant in Normandy, and held Hilton and Stapleford of him in England, and was the father of Robert de Heriz I., whose family held Herissiere in Avranches under the overlordship of Hugh d'Avranches, of whom the Becs (Cauchois) had links through the Grandcourts.


This is not a corruption of Amfreville, as at first might seem the case.* (As mentioned above, Walter de Bec donated lands in Amfreville-Gueudeville with Turstin de Bec to Boscherville. It has also been shown that Walter had connections to another Amfreville (Amfreville-la-mi-voie); thus, general principles are suggested: that the families of Gilbert Crispin and Ralph de Bec had various connections to fiefs called Amfreville, and that their great-uncle, "Ansfred the Dane", for Amfreville is synonomous with Ansfredivilla (Ernest Negre, Toponymie Generale de la France, v. 2, p. 1019, 1996), was the chieftain who had held them. It may be that "Ansfred" was the true father of Crispin de Bec, for it is not known on what information the French historians D'Anisy and de Sainte-Marie based their account of Crispin de Bec being the son of Ansfred's supposed brother, William. Certainly, Gilbert Crispin I. and his brother, Ralph de Bec, being cousins of "Richard fils de Toustain" would make more robust sense of the associations above mentioned). *"Situé dans une plaine fort agréable, à peu de distance de la belle vallée qu'arrosent les eaux de la rivière de Scie, le bourg d'Offranville se trouve à 1 lieue 1/2 (sud-sud-ouest) de Dieppe, et 12 lieues 1/2 (nord) de Rouen. Dans le XIIe siècle, on appelait ce lieu Wulfranville, en latin Vulfranni villa. Les titres des âges postérieurs disent successivement Oulfrannlle, Ouffrenville, Oufrainville, et enfin Offranville (Alexandre Guilmeth, Histoire des environs de Dieppe, p. 101, 1842).



The suggestion of Offranville (Offramville) being the cradle of Robert de Umfraville is not new: "It has been stated that the evidence linking the English Umfrevilles with Offramville near Dieppe might have seemed too weak had the place-name been commoner' (A. R. Wagner English Genealogy, p. 55, 1960). Thus, the orthographical case for the Umfravilles (Umframvilles) being 'Offramvilles' is strong. People were simultaneously known by array of names at this time, reflecting the ever-changing holding of fiefs under successive lords, and I suggest that rather than the various Amfrevilles being the cradle of the Umfravilles, Offranville (Offramville etc.) offers a sounder alternative; the tenurial closeness of the Umfravilles of Hambleton to the Ferrers, then lords of adjoining Oakham, who were closely associated with the family of (Bourg) Dun of Offranville, lends support to this notion. 


The early records concerning the family of Umfraville are a mixture of plain forgery and creative thinking. The contention that William I. granted Hambleton to Robert de Umfraville is a product of the latter; the charter of 1076, which names him as "lord of Tours in Vian", belongs to the former; see J. H. Round, Peerage and Pedigree, i. 296-8, 1910. Robert, as Robert "with-the-beard", is mentioned firstly in 1207. Certainly, a Robert de Umfraville is mentioned in charters of King David I.; the first at Huntingdon in 1124, with Gilbert de Umfraville; their connection being unknown (Barrow, Regesta Regum Scottorum, i., 1960), and equally certainly a Robert de Umfraville was granted the barony of Prudhoe by Henry I. for two and a half knights' fees (Book of Fees, i. 1198-1242). In order to accomodate an 'earlier' Robert, historians, such as Hodgson, argued for there being two Roberts, for which clear evidence does not exist, only the circumstantial one that Redesdale was likely to have been granted to a Umfraville in the last decade of the eleventh-century, at the same time as Teesdale was granted to Guy de Balliol; that is at the time of the creation of the "free zone." This seems to be a reasonable supposition. I would suggest that the Umfravilles acquired Hambleton at a time matching Ralph de Freney's tenancy of Clipsham.

Hambleton was an Ancient Parish held by Queen Edith in 1066 as part of her dowry of 'Roteland', to pass on her death to Westminster Abbey. Although the church, and its daughter in Stamford, passed to Westminster Abbey, William I did not allow the grant to take full effect. He or William II granted the central manor to William Barba (de Barbes), predecessor of the Umfraville family in which the manor and one of the outliers, Normanton, descended: the Red Book of the Exchequer (Hall, ii. p. 534); Rotuli Hundredorum, ii. p. 49; VCH Rutland, ii. pp. 67-68. This is the source of Robert de Umfraville being designated "with-the-beard"; named as such in a charter of Richard de Umfraville, who claimed to be his great-grandson. There is no known connection between "William Barba" and the Umfravilles, who acquired Hambleton at the same time as acquiring the outlying estate of Normanton (Feudal Aids, iv. pp. 206-207; VCH Rutland, ii. p. 86). Normanton was formerly a part of Edith Weston, which preserved the name of the T.R.E. holder Queen Edith. It was given by Henry I to his chamberlain, William de Tankerville, who himself gave it to the Abbey of St George de Boscherville which he founded in Normandy (Book of Fees, p. 1151; Rotuli Hundredorum, ii. p. 49; Feudal Aids, iv. p. 207; VCH Rutland, i. p. 163, ii. p. 362). William de Tankerville, as stated above, married Maud de Arques, daughter of Beatrix Malet, daughter of Hesilia Crispin and William de Arques (Vivien Brown, Eye Priory Cartulary, p. 6, 1992); great-uncle of William de Roumare (who held Offranville, as shown); the patron of Walter II de Bec in Lincolnshire, nephew of Walter Giffard I.; cousin of Walter Giffard II., whose family were the main patrons of the Bec (Cauchois) family. Hambleton adjoined Oakham, and Braunston, another outlying estate of Hambleton, was later attached to Oakham, and was held by Walchelin de Ferrers in 1167 (Feudal Aids, iv. pp. 206-207; VCH Rutland, ii. p. 33). Walchelin was the son of Henry de Ferrers, fl. 1136, Lord of Oakham, grandson of the Henry de Ferrers who was lord of "Robert de Bourg-Dun" of Offranville in Normandy, whom I have attempted to identify by his various appellations.


The institution of Richard de Hameldon to Normanton: "Nouverit universitatas vestra, nos, ad presentationem noblis viri Gilberti de Dunfranvill, patroni eclesie de Normanton ...." (Rotuli Roberti Grosseteste, episcopi lincolniensis, A. D. MCCXXXV-MCCLIII). In that granting of church 'livings' was usually confined to someone related to the patron, it is reasonable to assume that Richard de Hameldon was of the family of "noblis viri Gilberti de Dunfranvill"; fl. c. 1250. The first record of an Umfraville in Normanton was of Odinell de Umfraville in 1183; Normanton was probably acquired by the Umfravilles at an early date, and in 1183 the sheriff rendered account of 25s. 8d. from Normanton, the land of Odinell de Umfraville (Pipe R. 29 Hen. II, m. 4 d.). Odinell was recorded as Dunfranvill or similar in various deeds. It would not require a too generous degree of assumption to equate "Walter fiz Gilbert de Hameldone" of Scotland with the Hameldons (Umfravilles) of Normanton, especially when considering "Gilberti de Dunfranvill's" connection to Angus; although, as I suggest elsewhere, another possibility, connected less directly to these Umfravilles, could also be considered.


Gilberti de Dunfranvill is noted in the Fine Rolls of 1226/7: "The king has taken the homage of Gilbert de Umfraville for the lands and fees that Richard de Umfraville,* his father, held of the King ... Because Gilbert has given the king surety by W. earl of Ferrers** for rendering £100 to the king for his relief ...... It is written in the same manner to the sheriff of Rutland for the same." *Son of Gilbert, son of Robert, son of Odinell, as above, son of who is tentatively identified as Robert II. de Umfraville. **William, Earl of Derby, by his first wife, Sybilla, daughter and coheir of William Marshall, Earl of Pembroke, by his first wife, Sybilla, daughter and coheir of William Marshall, Earl of Pembroke, had as third daughter, Maud, the spouse of William de Kyme; the family of which the Umfravilles were to marry into.

Angus was an earldom created by writ of summons to parliament, the 25 Edward I., in the person of Gilbert de Umfraville, and though the name of a Scotch title, yet the said Gilbert, and his successors, were all summoned to parliament as English earls, and named as such with the other earls of the realm.

Gilbert de Umfraville who married Matildis, the daughter and heiress of Malcolm, earl of Angus, in Scotland, was one of the most illustrious among the English barons, as recited by Dugdale, citing Matthew Paris, and was lord of Herbottil, Prudhoe, &c. the county of Northumberland. He was married in 1243, and deceased shortly after in 1245, leaving the countess Matildis surviving, and Gilbert his son and heir, of very tender years. This Gilbert de Umfraville on attaining his majority became a person of very considerable note, and in the 51 of Hen. III. obtained a grant for a weekly market, and a yearly fair at Overton in the county of Rutland, in which grant he is styled earl of Angus (Cart. 51, H3).

In 1252 notice is made of "Willielmus de Hameldene" and the "maneria Hameldon' and Overton in comitatu Botelandiae", this William being alive in c. 1280. Hambleton (Hameldon) and Overton in later times are described as villages in the parish in Oakham. It is easily perceived that a family of Hamilton may have descended from this stock.


                             HAMBLETON AND OAKHAM




William de Arques — i.e. de Arcis or Arches and his relations have been shown to be very much connected to the Bec of Caux family, certainly in terms of overlordship. Hi name was derived from Arques, a bourg in Offranville, in the vicinity of Dieppe; it adjoins Bourg-Dun. He was son of Godfridus, vicomte of Arques, and grandson of Gozelin, also vicomte of Arques, and afterwards of Rouen. Gozelin was his grandfather by the mother's side, as Osbern de Bolbec, husband of one of the sisters of the duchess Gunnora, wife of Duke Richard I., is reputed to have been his paternal grandfather. We a find a carta from Robert de Caux* in Derbyshire and Notts, with fifteen tenants, all holding under "de Arches." This Arches family were settled at Grove in Notts, and at Mendham in Suffolk. In 1166, the wife of Robert de Arches held "2 men" under this Robert "de Chauz", so there certainly must have been some family connection. Further, Robert de Chauz held in 1161 under Piperel i.e. Peveril; in 1194 under Tickhill (The Antiquary v. 38, p. 215, 1889).

William de Arques had a brother called Osbern, known variously as "Osbern de Archis", "Osbern de Arches", and "Osbern the Sheriff." At Domesday he held 66 manors in Yorkshire, including Newton Kyme. Osbern's youngest son was Gilbert de Arches, who was the father of Herbert de Arches I., who held land at Coniston, near the boundary of Kettlewell. His nephew was Simon, son of the Saxon Thane Uctred de Hebden (descendant of Uctred, Earl of Northumberland, son of Waltheof Earl of Bernicia and Judith of Lens, daughter of Lambert II, Count of Lens and Adelaide of Normandy, sister of William the Conqueror; Uctred, Earl of Northumberland married Bethoc; daughter of Donald III, King of Scotland); brother of Henry of Coniston (Bradford Antiquary, p. 420, 1905). Herbert had married Uctred's sister, Ingoldina. *Robert de Caux was the grandson of the Robert I take to be of Bourg-Dun, and synonomous with the father of Robert de Heriz I.


A contention of old was that the Heriz family stemmed from a certain "Alselin." The following account gives the basis of this assumption; that antiquaries wrongly deduced Heriz descent by confounding them with a closely associated family: At the time of the survey of Domesday, Goisfridus Alselin was lord of Shelford, and in several entries mention is made of Ralph, his nephew, and before the year 1108, 8th Henry I. this barony of the Domesday tenant was in moieties between Robert de Caux, and a second Geoffrey Halselin, the son of Ralph, as appears by this entry in a record of that date. "Rodbertus de Chalz et Goffridus Halselinus in Wragebi 4 carrucatas, et 5 bovatas, et tertiam partem unius bovate, under Jerburc wapentacha." It is commonly and wrongly ascerted that Robert de Caux had married the daughter and heiress of Geoffrey Aselin, and the barony descended in moieties to each of these representatives of the two tenants in Domesday (De Antiquis Legibus liber, p. 94, 1846). To borrow from Mr. Yeatman ('Lost certificates of Knight's fees') "It would seem from the expression, "Robert de Calz received this land with his mother," that he obtained her marriage and dower (twelve and half fees being exactly one-third of Goisfred Hanselin's fees), and this fee, notwithstanding its illegality, remained in the possession of the family of de Calz. It is nearly certain from this that this lady was the widow of Goisfred Hanselin. But Robert de Cauz was probably her son by her second husband, who was probably Robert de Caucis, the witness of Lenton Priory"; ipso facto a tenant of William Peverel. Thus, Robert de Caux was the father of another Robert de Caux, who was not the son of "Ralph" as is commonly and wrongly given, from confusion stemming from legacies of Ralph, nephew of Goisfridus Alselin. Robert de Caux, the second so named, married Isabel de Ferrers,* daughter of Robert de Ferrers (son of Henry de Ferrers) and Hawise de Vitre, daughter of Andre de Vitre and Agnes de Mortain, daughter of Robert, Count of Mortagne, the Conqueror's half-brother, and Maud de Montgomery. *Her sister married Ralph Paynel of Dudley; their daughter, Hawise, married John de Somery; their son, Ralph de Somery, married Margaret Marshall, daughter of John FitzGilbert, Mareschal of England. Robert de Caux and Isabel de Ferrers had issue, another Robert, married to Matilda Basset: In 4 John (R.C.R. No. 17), Matilda, widow of "Robert de Caus" , as appears by the Lady's Roll of 33 Henry II., who was the daughter of Richard Basset, Chief Justice of England.

Goisfridus Alselin was closely linked with Henry de Ferrers (as noted, closely associated with Gilbert Crispin II. at Senlac; Gilbert being the second-cousin of Robert de Bec-aux-Cauchois); being a tenant of his in Scropton and Thulston, Derbys. It has been noted that Goisfridus was possibly related to the Halselin who was a knight of William de Braose in Sussex (Keats-Rohan, Domesday People, 24).

Robert and Geoffrey de Heriz donated to William Peverel's foundation of Lenton; Robert de Heriz gave two parts of the tithes of his demesne lands in Ashbourn and Oxcroft, in Derbyshire. Geoffrey de Heriz gifted of two parts of the tithes of his demesne lands in Stapleford and land in Herissiere, Avranches. They were probably brothers ....... "as elsewhere suggested (see p. 84), the Robert named in the Domesday survey (who held Edensor of Henry de Ferrers - M.S), as holding lands in Tibshelf and South Wingfield, may have been the father of that Robert de Heriz whose name appears in the foundation charter of Lenton Priory, there is no difficulty in the matter, for he and the above-named Geoffrey de Heriz would probably in that case be brothers (J. T. Godfrey, History of the Parish and Priory of Lenton, 1884).

Bec-aux-Cauchois was synonomous with Bec-de-Caux (Toussaint Du Plessis, 'Description géographique', p. 325, 1740). There seems little doubt that Robert "de Caux" was the "Robert of Domesday", known also as Robert "de Dun", who held Edensor of Henry de Ferrers, and Bourg-Dun in Offranville, Dieppe, of the same lord, and that his son was synonomous with Robert de Heriz I., who also held Edensor; who donated to Lenton under various tenurial appellations, and who, as herein noted, married several times.


We obviously know that a family of Macey originated in Avranches. We have seen how Robert d' Avranches, who held the fief of Macey, south of Avranches (Loyd, 'Origins', pp. 11-12), was the father of Rualon d'Avranches, and that Robert d'Avranches was a degree of cousin of Hugh Lupus. When Hugh's nephew, Ranulf, was confirming gifts to his uncle's foundation, the representatives of the Macey family were Robert and Simon de Macey (Robert being Ruallon II. (as aforementioned; "Inter Simonem de Avranches petentem per Roelland. fratrem suum"; Archaeol. Cant. vol. ii. p. 265); grandsons of Ruallon de Avranches.

1. Ansfroi le Danois

1.1. Ansfroi le Danois (WJ, VII.6, pp. 173-4). The first Viscount of Hiesmes that is on record, and his descendants inherited this dignity, as well as his surname of Le Gotz or Gois.

1.1.1. Toustain le Goz ("Turstin vicecomes") (ibid.) Witnessed the charter dated to c. 1047 under which Guillaume II Duke of Normandy confirmed the donation by "Adelelmi…Beatricis uxor eius ....... Rotberti filius eius" to the abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel; witnessing immediately after "Gisleberti Crispini, fratris eius Guillelmi." Richard "le Goz" ("Richard fils de Toustain") (ibid.). Hugh d'Avranches or Abrincis ("Lupus") (Orderic Vitalis, Vol. II, Book IV, p. 261).

1.1.2. Wimund d'Avranches "Vuitmundus vicecomes" William d'Avranches, sp. Emma FitzGilbert de Brionne. "Guillaume fils de Guimond donne toutes ses vavassories du Luot en 1066" (Cartulaire du Mont-Saint-Michel, n° 70, f° 83v, 84); Fulk Paynel II. in 1158 "confirmer une donation taile par ses ancêtres" of "la donation du Luot." Luot is in canton Haye-Paynel. This is not to say that William Paynel was a son of William d'Avranches, but the possibility can reasonably be considered, meaning that William Paynel did not come into his holdings in Avranches through marrying a daughter of William d'Avranches, as is a common conjecture, but through paternal inheritance. Consider the degree of 'confusion' that surrounds the Paynel pedigree: Robert d'Avranches, alias Maci or Abrincis, who held the fief of Macey, south of Avranches (Loyd, 'Origins', pp. 11-12); who married, firstly, a daughter of Gelduin de Dol. The author of the 'Norman People' made Ruallon a younger brother of Hugh Lupus. Had there been a younger brother, he or his children would naturally have succeeded to the Earldom, rather than his sister's son. Neither can Rualon have been a son of William FitzWimund d'Avranches, in that Williams son, Robert, married Matilda Avenel. The Fundationis et Fundatorum Historia of Ford Abbey records that domina Alicia uxor domini Randolphi Avenell filia sua…unicam filiam…Matildam married Roberto filio regis Henrici primi notho after the death of her first husband Roberto de Abrincis id est de Averinges (Dugdale Monasticon V, Ford Abbey, Devonshire I, p. 378). Rualon d'Avranches; named after Gelduin de Dol's grandfather, Rualon de Dol. It was this Rualon d'Avranches who married Maud de Monville, daughter of William d'Arques and Beatrix Malet, daughter of William Malet and Hesilia Crispin. She was not the second wife of Robert d' Avranches; neither was Robert also known as Rualon. William d' Avranches. "This Kentish family held the great barony of Folkestone, brought in dower by the grand-daughter of William de Arques, its first Norman Lord, Maud de Monneville, who was given in marriage to Riwallon or Ruallon d'Avranches, by Henry I. Their son William is said to have founded the church upon its present site, about 1138. The line had ended with another William, fourth of the name, before 1235. His sister Maud, styled "the great heiress of Folkestone," conveyed the barony to Hamon de Crevecoeur" (Cleveland). Simon d'Avranches. Robert or "Ruallon" d'Avranches, alias Maci.


Dudo told the story of a local lord named Riulf who challenged William Longsword's control over the province. For the rebellion of Riulf, see De moribus, iii. 43-46 (187-191); the account is retold by William of Malmsbury, contemporary with Orderic, but generally acknowledged as a much greater historian. The salient points:
"In his fourth year, that is, in the year of our Lord nine hundred and forty-four,' William the son of Rollo, duke of Normandy, was treacherously killed in France, which old writers relate as having been done with some degree of justice. Riulf, one of the Norman nobility, owing William a grudge from some unknown cause, harassed him with perpetual aggressions. His son Anschetil (le Preux) who served under the earl, to gratify his lord, ventured to offer violence to nature; for taking his father in battle ........ In consequence ....... (William Longsword) ....... was met, under the pretence of a conference, as they assert, and killed by Balzo in the middle of the river Seine."
Balzo is of considerable interest, in that Sir Francis Palgrave (Hist. Normandy, vol. ii., p. 63, 1857) identifies him as a nephew of Riulf, with Balzo also called "Balduinus", a son of the "Count of Cambrai." "Therefore Riulph was either the brother-in-law or brother of that Count; but Balzo as we have ascertained from the most incontestable of evidence, a royal charter, was related in blood equally to the family of Charles the Simple, and to Arnoul, Count of Flanders, in whose household he held the office of Chamberlain, so that Riulph, Balzo's uncle, must have been connected with both of them." Thus:
1. Baudouin, Count of Flanders, m. Judith, widow firstly of Aethelwulf, King of Wessex, and secondly of Aethelbald, King of Wessex, daughter of Charles II. "le Chauve" King of the West Franks & his first wife Ermentrude d'Orléans. She is named as wife of Baldwin in the list of counts of Flanders recorded in the Cartulaire de Saint-Bertin, which also names her parents and her three sons.
(Through their descendant, Matilda of Flanders, who married William the Conqueror, the line of the Anglo-Norman Kings of England can be traced; Sir Francis Palgrave, The History of the Anglo-Saxons, 1831).
1.1. Baudouin II. He is named as second of the three sons of Baudouin and his wife Judith in the list of counts of Flanders recorded in the Cartulaire de Saint-Bertin. He succeeded his father in 879 as Baudoin "le Chauve" Count of Flanders. He m. Aelfthryth of Wessex, in 899, daughter of Alfred King of Wessex & his wife Ealhswith of the Gainas.
1.1.1. Arnoul "le Grand", b. 889, Count of Flanders. After agreeing to meet Guillaume Longsword in 942 in order to settle the dispute over Montreuil, Guillaume was murdered, presumably at Count Arnoul's instigation. He m. Adele de Vermandois.
(Crispin de Bec alias Crespin-Ansgot, grandson of Heriulfr (par Léchaude d'Anisy), married Heloise de Guines, daughter of Siegfried, Count of Guines, and Elftrude de Flandre, great- grandaughter of King Alfred, and daughter of the above mentioned Arnoul "le Grand" and Adele de Vermandois - W. H. Turton, The Plantagenet Ancestry, 1928).
1.1.2. Aethelwulf de Flanders. The Cartulaire de Saint-Bertin specifies that he succeeded his father in 918 as Comte de Boulogne-sur-Mer, de Thérouanne.
1.1.3. "Ealhswid" is named as daughter of Count Baudouin and his wife Aelfthryth in the Chronicle of Aethelweard.
1.1.4. "Earmentruth" is named as daughter of Count Baudouin and his wife Aelfthryth in the Chronicle of Aethelweard.
1.2. "Rodolphus Cameracensis comes", Comte de Cambrai, is named as third of the three sons of Baudouin and his wife Judith in the list of counts of Flanders recorded in the Cartulaire de Saint-Bertin. The Annales Vedastini name "Balduinus…comes et Rodulfus frater eius nec non Ragnerus."
1.2.1. Baudouin (Balzo). Named by H. Pirrene (Histoire de Belgique, vol. i. tab. vii.) as the son of Rodolphus or Raoul de Cambrai.
Sir Francis Palgrave allowed the term "nepos" to literally mean nephew, wherehas it may possibly indicate a more remote blood relationship. It can be deduced from the above that Baudoin II. and his brother, "Rodolphus Cameracensis comes", were born circa 855, with any sister being of similar birth date, therefore not a wife the Riulf of 944. Any wife of Riulf connected to Baudouin (Balzo) would have to be of the next generation, such as his cousins, "Ealhswid" and "Earmentruth", daughters of Baudouin II. and Aelfthryth of Wessex, daughter of Alfred King of Wessex & his wife Ealhswith of the Gainas.
If Riulf was Heriulf, the chieftain whose fief (Herulfcort) the Harcourts came to possess, and Anschetil (le Preux) was Anschetil de Briquebec, given as son of Heriulf by such antiquaries as Léchaude d'Anisy, and who is noted as one of the few barons to have remained loyal to William Longsword immediately after the death of Rollo, then it is entirely possible that Heriulf married a grandaughter of King Alfred, and the appellation of "le Goz" given to descendants was a consequence of this association.
Like all things Norman, their written chronicles are a mixture of propaganda woven around kernels of truth or probability; of oral history passed to successive generations. We know little as fact in terms of the earliest genealogies; thus, the suggestion I give above is in the same category as the ancestry of the Harcourts as gleaned by La Roque from sixteenth-century ballads - possible, verging on the probable, given d'Anisy's conjecture. Thus, Heriulf or Heriulfr (known commonly as Hrolf Torsten) would have followed the custom of his time and culture, having several wives, one being Gerlotte de Blois; another of the blood royal of Saxon England; the offsring of this latter alliance being the "le Goz" element of the Crispin family; the term pertaining to "darker-skinned Saxon nobility" as I have explained elsewhere.

Heriulf is taken to be the father of Ansfrid the Dane, who I suggest is the more likely father of Crispin de Bec than his supposed brother, Guillaume.


As Mr William Smith Ellis wisely said: ....... "bearing constantly in mind the fact, hitherto not sufficiently considered in compiling genealogies, that, in the early Norman reigns, the same person, as we have seen in Domesday, was often described by half a dozen different designations." The quote is from 'Hurstpierpoint' in which Mr. Ellis attempts to account for the origins of the Ellis family. He does so by giving a "Geoffrey le Marshal" (described as "de Bec" and of the Crispin family) two daughters, one of whom he marries to "Gilbert le Marshal", thus accounting for the assumed similarity of the coats of arms of the Crispin and Marshal families. Mr. Ellis was following the path of other Victorian antiquaries, who, sharing the heraldic arguement, also made much of the Crispin family's military pre-eminence among the Normans. However this may be, Mr Ellis did not always follow his same-person-many-names observation; he identifies the father of "Gilbert le Marshal" as "Normannus", without giving credence to the possibility that "Normannus" was "Geoffrey le Marshal", alias de Bec. Who was this Geoffrey de Bec? He is stated to be "probably of the same family" as Walter de Bec-aux-Cauchois by the authors of 'Medieval Prosopography', vol. 24-5, p. 192, who, as Mr. Ellis, also believe him to have not left heirs; a point which may be challenged on the basis of his likely "half a dozen different designations" not being known. I will make the case that Geoffrey de Bec was the ancestor of a family of Coldham, sharing close ancestral ties with the (Heriz)descendants of Walter de Bec-aux-Cauchois, Geoffreys likely brother. Throughout, I will quote from Mr. Ellis's treatise on "Normannus", with gratitude and admiration for this gentleman's scholarly achievements, without which present-day research would be much bereft.

1. "Normannus" - a sobriquet; Ducange derived "Normannus" from Norma, and gave its meaning as " famulus" a servant. It was probably a soubriquet meaning "dapifer." Mr. Ellis thankfully spares his readers by not giving him the wholly fictitious name of Eustace, as given by less scrupulous contemporaries. "As under-tenant, he had lands in Berks, Somersetshire, Devonshire, Leicestershire, Yorkshire, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire, and Shropshire; and as tenant in capite, in Yorkshire. In one entry in Suffolk, he is styled "Vicecomes " (sheriff), and in the same county, as well as in Kent, Sussex, and Surrey, he is said to have held manors temp. Edward the Confessor: and in one entry in Sussex, a manor is mentioned, of which "Normannus tenuit et tenet modo" of William (II.) de Eu." We have already seen that Walter de Bec-aux-Cauchois, son of Ralph de Bec, married a daughter of Hugh de Grandcourt, a contemporary, and highly likely close relation, of William II. de Eu, sp. (2) Helisende, d. o. Richard le Goz, vicomte d'Avranches, and sister of Hugh Lupus, Earl of Chester.

(The following pedigree of Montalt is a construction from reputable sources, though I am aware that such constructions are, at best, reasonable reflections of reality; the following may be one generation too few).

1.1. "Ralph the Dapifer" (of Hugh Lupus - M.S), was living 1093 and 1119, and was brother of Hugh Fitz-Norman." In 1119 he witness Hugh Fitz-Norman's grant of Gostrey and Lawton to Chester Abbey; and he afterwards, as Radulphus Dapifer, follows the Earl's brother, William Meschines, and the Baron of Halton, as a witness to the Charter of Ranulph to the same.

1.1.1. Robert de Montalt. "Mr. Ormerod, in his Miscellanea Palatina, gives a well-authenticated pedigree of the baronial family of Montalt, derived from Robert Dapifer de Montalt, alias Robert Fitz-Ralph Fitz-Norman, mentioned in the Pipe Roll of 31 Henry I., and living in 1162." Of "Normannus" Mr. Ormerod does not profess to know anything, but considers the name of "Norman" a sobriquet." Robert de Montalt came to hold Coddington. Robert de Montalt, sp. Leucha, highly likely of the Barons of Halton, given her dower of Neston, the church of which was bestowed upon the Monastery of St. Werburg, about the year 1180. Robert de Montalt. Roger de Montalt. Seneschal and Justice of Chester. Roger de Montalt, died 1260, having been Chief Justice of Chester, from the year 1257. This Roger de Montalt, we take to be the same personage who married Cecily, fourth daughter of William, Earl of Sussex,* sister and co-heir to Earl Hugh, who died in the 27th of King Henry III.; to whom the township and castle of Rising, in Norfolk, was assigned in her right, who made it his chief seat and place of residence. He held this lordship in her right.

*William de Aubigny, Earl of Sussex, son of William d'Aubigny Pincerna, and Maud Bigod, d. o. Roger Bigod, 1st Earl of Norfolk.* William de Aubigny probably married Mabel, d. o. Hugh 'Keveliok' de Meschines, Earl of Chester. Roger Bigod was succeeded by his eldest son, William Bigod, and, after he drowned in the sinking of the White Ship, by his second son, Hugh Bigod, who later became Earl of Norfolk. Roger Bigod's daughter, Gunnora, married Robert, Lord of Rayleigh.

(William Marshall, Earl of Pembroke, son of John,* son of Gilbert le Marshal, who bore a bend fusilly, which were also those of the family of Raleigh (this coat was no doubt derived from Geoffrey le Marshal, or de Bec, of the family of Crispin, who bore lozengy), married Isabel de Clare, daughter and heir of Richard, son of Gilbert de Clare, surnamed "Strongbow", who was created Earl of Pembroke in 1138. Their daughter, Maud, married 1st, Hugh Bigod, Earl of Norfolk. *A charter of John, son of Gilbert le Marshal, gives to Hugh de Raleigh (probably his brother) the manor of Nettlecombe, in Somersethire (S.R.O., DD/WO 1; 62/9).

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1. Roger Bigod, Earl of Norfolk.

1.1. Maud Bigod, sp. William d'Aubigny Pincerna.

1.1.1. William de Aubigny, Earl of Sussex, sp. Mabel, d. o. Hugh 'Keveliok' de Meschines, Earl of Chester. Cecily de Aubigny, sp. Roger de Montalt, who held the township and castle of Rising, in Norfolk, in her right. Simon de Montalt. Hugh de Aubigny, 5th Earl of Arundel, sp. Isabel de Warren, d. o. William (Plantagenet) de Warren, Earl of Warren and Surrey. Isabel de Aubigny, sp. John FitzAlan, lord of Oswestry, Sheriff of Shropshire. Nicola de Aubigny, sp. Roger de Somerie, lord of Dudley.

1.2. Hugh Bigod, Earl of Norfolk, sp. Maud Marshal, d. o. William Marshall, Earl of Pembroke, son of John, son of Gilbert "le Marshal."

1.2.1 Roger Bigod, Earl of Norfolk, sp. Isabel, d. o.  William "the Lion" of Scotland. Roger held the Manor of Coldham-Hall, Suffolk, held of the Bigods by Simon de Coldham.

1.3. Gunnora Bigod, sp. Robert, Lord of Rayleigh, of the family of Gilbert "le Marshal."

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cont. John de Montalt, Seneschal of Chester, sp. (1) Elene, widow of Robert de Stockport; (2) Milicent, d. o. William de Cantilupe, but dying without male issue, was s. by his brother, Robert. Ellen de Montalt. Feudal Aids (6:21,23) refers to 'Elienora de Zuche' as holding the manor of Bingley of her mother 'Milisenta de Monte Alto' in 1284-5; Rev. C Moor, 'Knights of Edward I' - " That quote leads me to think that Ellen was a daughter of Milicent and John de Montalt and was "adopted" by 2nd husband Eudo la Zouche. Her mother Milicent held the manor of Bingley in the name of Monte Alto for her daughter by her first marriage. Eleanor married Sir John de Harcourt of Stanton Harcourt, son of Sir Richard de Harcourt and Margaret Beke, d. o John Beke, Baron Beke of Eresby. Robert de Montalt, the "Black Steward of Chester"; he married, circa 1261, Joan, daughter of Roger de Mowbray by Maud, sister and eventually coheir of Simon de Beauchamp, 1st daughter of William de Beauchamp, Baron of Bedford. He died shortly before 16 September 1275. His widow's dower was assigned October 1275. She was dead in 8 Edward II. He had two sons, Roger, and Robert, and was s. by the elder.

(I assume John de Montalt to have had several younger brothers, whose names appear in two lists of Crusaders who obtained the King's letters of protection during their absence from England in 1270/1. The general list contains Simon de Montalt, whilst the letters of protection for the following: 20 February, include in total "Henricus de Allemannia, nepos regis. Adam de Montalt. Walterus de Wygeton. Johannes de Montalt. Petrus de Chaumpayne. Elyas de Rabeyn. Simon de Montalt. Willielmus Belet. Eustachius de Balliolo. Bertramus de Draycot" (Samuel Bentley, Excerpta historica, p. 271, 1831). It is reasonable to assume Adam and Simon de Montalt to be other younger brothers of John de Montalt (Johannes de Montalt), who accompanied him on the Crusade. (This Simon was not the Simon of the "lesser" family of Montalts who had died previous to this time without male heirs). Roger de Montalt. He was one of the barons in rebellion against Henry III., but returning to his allegiance, he subsequently defended Cambridge for the king. In the reign of Edward I., he was in the wars of Gascony, and was summoned to parliament as a Baron, on the 23rd June, 1296, he m. Julian, daughter of Roger de Clifford, but dying without issue, in 1297, the barony expired — his lands devolved, however, upon his brother. Roger de Montalt granted to Hugh de Brickhull, the Manor of Bretton. Hugh de Brickhill was many times mayor of Chester between 1272 and 1312 (Orm. i. 207-8). The family doubtless came from Brickhill in Buckinghamshire, which had belonged to the earls of Chester from the Conquest (DB, i. 147). Roger de Montalt is noted in many charters with "Hugh de Brickhull." Isabel de Montalt, m. Sir William de Morley, 1st Baron Morley of Roydon, son of Robert de Morley of Roydon. Robert de Morley. He married, firstly, Hawise, sister and coheir of John Marshal of Hingham, Norfolk, and daughter of William Marshal, 1st Lord Marshal, by Christian, daughter of Robert FitzWalter, 1st Lord FitzWalter, hereditary Marshal of Ireland, who, as Robert's feudal superior, of the Barony of Rye, had been his guardian. A family of Coldham became established at the Morley fief of Swanton Morley, as evidenced by these later records: "Couldham, George, Swanton Morley (Norfolk) 1596"; "Couldham, John, senior, yeoman, of Swanton Morley, 1617",  NCC will register, Trotter, 3;  "Couldham, John, of Swanton, 1561-1564", ANW will register, Ayer, fo. 68. Robert de Montalt. He was born 25 March 1274. He married by royal license 25 January 1300/1 Emma, widow of Sir Richard FitzJohn, who died shortly before 5 August 1297.

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(The name Brickell is from - Bow Brickhill - In 1086 two manors in this parish belonged to Walter Giffard, patron of the Bec family. From one or both of the tenants of the two manors of Walter Giffard in 1086, of whom Ralph held 5 hides and Robert 4 (V.C.H. Bucks. i, 252) a manor of Bow Brickhill came eventually to the Chaunceys, i.e. (Cauceis, le Cauchois); possibly Roger Chauncey, living in 1174 (Pipe R. 21 Hen. II (Pipe R. Soc., 53), was one of the early lords. Caldecott Manor is not mentioned in 1086, but was probably included in Bow Brickhill Manor. Colour to the supposition that this small manor was comprised within the larger at the Domesday Survey is lent by the fact that the Chaunceys, lords of Bow Brickhill, were also lords of Caldecott ('Parishes: Bow Brickhill', A History of the County of Buckingham: Volume 4 (1927), pp. 289-293). Hence, the Brickell family may have stemmed from that of Bec-aux-Cauchois).

Roger de Montalt, held two knights' fees in Carlton and Kessingland of the honour of Chester (Testa de Nevill, p. 291). Carlton was held by Roger de Colville: "There is a charter extant (Brit. Mus.) which shows the vast estate possessed by this family in Carlton and its neighbourhood, by which Roger de Colville grants to Robert his son, his manor of Coldham, with lands in Huggechall, Frostenden, Wangeford, Reydone, Estone, Wenhaston, Thuriton, Northale, Henstede, Wrentham, Wiligham, Elech, Soterle, Magna Wirlingham, Parva Wirlingham, North Cove (the Jernegan manor), Beccles, Endegate, Barsham, Riggesfield, Redesham, Branthorne, Schadenfield, Westhal, and Stovene, in the county of Suffolk, and Giligham, in Norfolk. The Colvilles retained estates in Carlton long after they had alienated the manor; for by an inquisition, taken on Monday after the feast of the decollation of St. John the Baptist, in the second of Richard II., it was found by the jury, that Roger Colville, Knt., held in Carlton and Petoughe one knight's fee, belonging to the castle and manor of Rising in Norfolk (Blomefield). Sir Roger de Colville obtained a license from the Crown to hold a market and fair in Carlton in the fifty-first of Henry III. In the following year (1267) this Sir Roger was Sheriff of Norfolk and Suffolk, and received of Robert de Kelling twenty shillings for not being a knight. He married Galiena Walpole" ('Carlton Colville', The History and Antiquities of the County of Suffolk: volume 1 (1846), pp. 237-243). The Montalt and Colleville families were of the same "Crispin" stock, as will be shown, and it is highly likely that Roger de Colville's holding under the the castle and manor of Rising came about through intermarriage with the Montalts; Roger de Montalt, Seneschal and Justice of Chester, above mentioned, holding this lordship in right of his wife. I would suggest that Simon de Montalt, above mentioned, married a daughter of Roger de Colville, and held an interest in Coldham (Suffolk) as Simon de Coldham under his brother-in-law, Robert de Colville. The Manor of Coldham-Hall (Suffolk) was held of the Earls of Norfolk, and to which the moiety of the advowson belonged, till sold from it. In 1239, Warine de Redenhall, lord of it, impleaded Roger Bigod Earl of Norfolk* (kin of the Montalts, as shown) to permit him to enjoy certain liberties belonging to this manor which he held of him. In 1303, Simon de Coldham of Redenhall and Emma his wife, sold the moiety of the advowson which belonged to it, and the manor (except an hundred shillings, land, and some rents, afterwards called Merks manor,) to Sir William de Burgis' ('Hundred of Earsham: Redenhall', An Essay towards a Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: volume 5 (1806), pp. 358-372). I submit that "Simon de Coldham" held of the Bigods as kin; he being a Montalt. *Roger Bigod was 4th Earl of Norfolk and Marshal of England. He was the son of Hugh Bigod, and Matilda, a daughter of William Marshal, Earl of Pembroke and Marshal of England, son of John FitzGilbert the Marshal.

This is not to suggest that Simon de Coldham was the ancestor of all named Coldham, for there were other Coldhams, and those who took their title from them at earlier times; what I do suggest is that any named Coldham associated with families such as Heriz are likely of the Simon de Coldham line, given, of course, the correctness of Simon being as postulated.


Daniel Gurney in his memoires of his family: "It seems likely that Philip de Burnham, or de Warenne, who held the manors of Burnham and Harpley in the reign of Stephen, was a younger son, or grandson by a younger son, of the first Earl Warren; and his wife having part of the Harpley manor, as appears hy the deed of William Fitz-Philip, leads me to think she was heiress of "Walter", who held these manors at the survey." ....... "Philip de Burnham, with the consent of Emma his wife, and William his son and heir, gave to the monks of Castle-acre his mill in Fyncham."

The "Walter" in question was Walter de Bec: "Walter de Bec-aux-Cauchois ........ He expanded his territory from Buckinghamshire into Norfolk, where he married into the family of Grandcourt, whose patron was William de Warenne. Walter married a daughter of Hugh de Grandcourt." 

1. Walter de Bec-aux-Cauchois, m. d. o. Hugh de Grandcourt.

2. Walter de Bec II.

3. Emma de Bec, m. Philip de Burnham, or de Warenne, likely son of Reginald de Warenne I.

4. William de Burnham.

5. Philip de Burnham, lord of this manor, in the 36th of Henry II., and was succeeded by:

6. Philip de Burnham, his son, who married Emma, daughter and coheir of Sir Ralph L'Estrange.

7. Margery de Burnham m. Walter de Grandcourt.

Temp. Henry IV. Sir Robert de Morley, and others, who farmed, or were trustees of this lordship (Burnham), kept their first court in the 11th of the said. King, on Thursday next after the feast of St. Simon and St. Jude ....... List of pieces of land in Burnham Thorpe (Norfolk, location specified) held by Roger de Coldham and Thomas Gygges. Court of Wards circa 1433 ...... John Swalne v. Roger Coldham, feoffee: Lands in Burnham (Brunham): Norfolk. Covering dates 1433 ....... Burnham Thorpe manor, cum membris, viz. Coldham's and Hayward's. It would appear that Roger de Coldham married into the family of Gygges. It is reasonable to perceive a connection beteen Simon de Montalt (de Coldham?) and Roger de Coldham, given familial connections to Morley, and equally reasonable that the following John de Coldham was of this lineage, given familial connections to Audley:

1. James de Audley, Justiciar of Ireland, m. Ela Longespee, d.o. Sir William II Longespee, Earl of Salisbury,and Idonea de Camville, second-cousin of Isabel de Camville, wife of Sir Robert de Harcourt, they the ancestors of Sir Richard de Harcourt, married to Ellen de Montalt, as above noted.

1.1. Nicholas de Audley, m. Catherine Giffard, d. o. Sir John Giffard and Maud de Clifford, cousin of Juliane de Clifford, married to Sir Roger de Montalt, as above noted.

1.2. Sir Hugh de Audley, Baron of Audley, b 1267.

1.2.1. Sir Hugh de Audley, Earl of Gloucester, m. Isabel, sister and coheir of Gilbert de Clare ('Hundred of South Erpingham: Little-Berningham', An Essay towards a Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: volume 6, pp. 316-320, 1807.

"Grant by John son of Alice de Coldham of Norfolk and Suffolk: Particulars of account for the Manors of Hugh d'Audley, Jun., namely Desning with Cavenham, Little Barningham, Wells with Warham, Wiston and Crimplesham. Covering dates 14-15 Edw. II 1321-2." It may have been the case that this John de Coldham held in Barningham, as, in 1390, Richard de Coldham and his wife Emma are mentioned in a court action of Richard Lytylker, parson of the church of  "Parva Bernyngham" concerning land in "Bernyngham" (Feet Fines Norf.). "Bernyngham" being noted as the manor of  "Hugonis de Audele Comitis Gloucestrise" (Rerum Britannicarum, 215). John de Coldham may have neen the son of John de Coldham, and related to Radulphus de Coldham, as - 1321. Jan. 25. Norfolk. "Thomas Mariot and Richer, his son, and Simon atte Westminster, atte (sic) Heythe of Plumpstede, tenants, put themselves against John son of John de Coldham, demandant, concerning a messuage, four acres of land and two acres of heath in Little Bemyngham, which John claims against the said tenants by writ of right, unless duel have been waged, as the tenants have placed themselves upon the grand assize" (Supplementary Close Rolls). "John de Goyst v, Radulphus de Coldham, by Adam de Weston, in Parva Bernyngham" (Feet Fines Norf., 1303).

Release by John Everard of Bryston and Roger Bulwer of Wooddallynge to John Dawet of Bryston and Thomas Matthew of Eggefeld, tenements in Bryston and Corpusty formerly belonging to Walter atte Chirche of Folsham which above feoffors held jointly with Thomas Brygge of Eggefeld gent., Simon Everard of Geystwheyt and Thomas Everard of Folsham deceased, by enfeoffment of John Gygge of Wyghton, William Walkelayne, parson of church of Holt, and John Grycke of Langham, 26 February 1444; witnesses: John Bryston, Robert Braunche esqs., Simon Coldham of Bryston, Clement Ace, William Bawet" (Feet Fines Norf.). This Simon de Coldham was of the subsequent generation to the Simon whom I propose married a daughter of Roger de Colville.


The Earl Warenne had also a lordship by grant of the Conqueror. The ancient family of de Briston, were lords of it. In the 4th of Henry III., Roger de Leonibus, or Lions, impleaded Ralph de Briston for 2 parts of a fee in this town. This Roger was son of Jeffrey de Lions, who married Matilda, daughter and coheir of William de Lions, who lived in the reign of Henry II. and left also 2 other daughters and coheirs, Hawise and Beatrice, and they dying s.p. he claimed it as heir. William de Grandcourt, lord of Fulmodeston, proving that Jeffrey de Lions had levied a fine of the same to his ancestor, William de Grandcourt, Briston held his possession.----------- In the 9th of Edward II. John de Briston was lord, and in the 17th a fine was levied between John, and Joan his wife, querents, John le Poure, &c. deforcients, whereby lands here were settled on John de Briston, remainder to Peter and John his sons; and in the 6lh of Edward III. this lordship was settled on the said John and Joan for life; remainder to John, Roger, Adam, Nicholas, &c. his sons, in tail. The arms of this family was quarterly, argent, and sable, a bend over all, or. John de Birston in the 20th of that King, held half a fee of the Calthorps (as was found), and they of the Earl Warenne. Thus, Briston, as Burnham, was a Warenne holding connected to the families of Grandcourt (and, thus, Bec), which a member of that kinship group, as suggested as Montalto vide Coldham, became associated with.


These Couldhams of Norfolk bore az. a mullet ar. pierced gu., which suggests intermarriage with the Harpden or Harpenden family of Senges, who bore but a slight difference, ar. a mullet, pierced, gu. Of Senges, it followed the pattern of both Burnham and Bernyngham in being eventually held in mesne by the Calthorps. William de Noiers at the survey was steward of a lordship in this town. This was granted by King William II. to William de Albini Pincerna. The genealogy of the Harpdens is lost within a Norfolk maze, yet it is certain that Sir John Harpenden married into the family of de la Pole, who held an interest in Senges. Sir John de la Pole, son of William de la Pole and Margaret Peverel (whose grandfather, Ralph Basset, was the brother of Maud Basset, wife of William de Heriz), married into a very important Kentish family, the Cobhams, his wife Joan being the daughter of John de Cobham, third Baron Cobham (obit. 1367), and his wife Margaret (obit. 1395), the daughter of Hugh Courtenay, the second Earl of Devonshire. Sir John and Lady Joan had one daughter, also Joan, who, as heir to John of Cobham, was to become known as Lady of Cobham. She had five husbands, three of whom are commemorated with brasses: Sir Reginald Braybrooke (obit. 1405) and Sir Nicholas Hawberk (obit. 1407), both at Cobham, Kent; and Sir John Harpenden (obit.1438) in Westminster Abbey. She and both her grandparents, John de Cobham and his wife Margaret also have brasses in the Cobham church. It was probably such connections which enabled the Coldham diaspora.

"Edmund, son of Sir Robert Peverel, of Castle Ashby in Northamptonshire, by Alice his wife, sister to Bishop Langton, was his cousin and heir, aged 14, at his uncle's death. By the escheat rolls, in the 5th of Edward III. Edmund was found to die seized of (Langton's) Coldham manor, containing 312 acres of land, 8 of meadow, 2 parts of a windmill, and John was his son and heir, by Elizabeth his wife, who dying s. p. Margaret his sister and heir, brought it by marriage, to Sir William de la Pole, son and heir of Sir Richard, by Helen his wife, and Sir John was his son and heir." ......... "Sir William and Margaret his wife, held this lordship, with those of Aspale, Debenham, Grimston, Trimley, and Assington, in Suffolk, in the 26th of Edward III. and in the said year, settled on Sir William his uncle, 4 marks annuity, out of this lordship, and that of Creshale in Essex; and in the 36th on Sir John Mowbray, the manor of Ashby-Davy, in Northamptonshire, and on John Lord Cobham, an annuity out of his manors of Sything in Norfolk, and of Grimston in Suffolk" (from Blomefield, p. 410).

The tomb of Sir John Harpenden: "The inscription is entirely rased from this tomb; but it still retains four shields of arms: two at the head of the slab, and two about the middle of the monument. The first, at the dexter corner, bears, Argent, a mullet of six points, pierced, and charged in the centre with a martlet, gules, for Harpeden, impaling, quarterly, first and fourth, Barry, of Six, or and azure, on a chief of the first, two pallets between two squares, based dexter and sinister, of the second, an inescutcheon, argent, Mortimer, second and third, or, a cross, gules, Ulster. The second shield, at the sinister corner of the slab, bears the coat of Harpeden, impaling, Gules, on a chevron, or, three estoiles, sable, Cobham, of Starborough, in Surrey. The third shield, on the dexter side, is charged with Harpeden, as before, impaling, Gules, on a chevron, or, three lions rampant, sable, Cobham, of Cobham, in Kent. The fourth shield, on the sinister side, bears Harpeden alone; viz. - a mullet, as before described. The molette, or mullet, borne by Sir John Harpeden, is one of the most common badges of chivalry; but in the earlier representations of the charge it is never found pierced, and very probably had, originally, reference to a meteor, as described by Guillim, in his " Display of Heraldry," chap. 5: but the arms of Harpeden, a mullet of six points, pierced, seems evidently an allusion to the spur rowel, from whence modern heralds derive the bearing. The French, our prototypes in the heraldic art, admit six points to the mullet, although we usually allow only five" (G. P. Harding, Antiquities in Westminster Abbey, p. 25, 1825).


The castle of Totnes, together with Cornworthy and Loddeswell, was given to Henry, son of earl Reginald (Pipe Rolls, 11 John; Testa, 1373, p. 195a, in Trans, xxxvii. 424), but on Henry's rebellion in 1219 they were restored to Reginald de Braiose (Rot. Lit. Claus., 3 Hen. III. m. 13), the third son of William de Braiose, together with the Honour of Totton. This Reginald died before 9 June, 1228 (Gibbs' Complete Peerage, I. 22), and his son William 2 May, 1230. In 1234 William's widow, Eva, held the castle and Honour (Testa, 1382, p. 195a). On her death before 1246 they passed to her daughter Eva, wife of William de Cantilupe the younger. William de Cantilupe died 25 September, 1254 (A.-D. Inq. 38 Hen. III. No. 46; Cal. Gen. 61), leaving an only son, George, and two daughters, Joan and Milisent. George died without issue 18 October, 1273 (A.-D. Inq. 1 Ed. I. No. 16; Gibbs' Complete Peerage, 23), whereupon his two sisters were left co-heiresses. The Honour of Totton fell to the share of Milicent, who married (1) Eudo or Ivo de la Zouche (Trans, xii. 197; Dugdale, Bar. I. 690; Oliver, Mon. 239 n.), and after his death (2) John de Montalt (Dugdale, I. 527). Her sister Joan married Sir Henry Hastings (Gibbs' Complete Peerage, I. 23). As stated, the order of Milicent's marriages should perhaps be reversed.

(The arms of William Harris of Cornworthy impaled those of Montalt, and also "a dragon's head", similar to an early crest of Coldham. It may be reasonable to assume a familial connection between this family of Harris and that of Simon de Montalt, who I have suggested to be synonomous with Simon de Coldham).

Cornworthy was one of Juhel's lordship manors which when the barony was divided in 1205 went to William Braiose. On William Braiose's outlawry in 1208 it was given to Henry, son of earl Reginald (Testa, 1373, p. 195a, in Trans, xxxvii. 424), but on Henry's rebellion in 1219 it was restored to Reginald, the third and only surviving son of William de Braiose. On his death in 1221 it passed with the Honour of Totton to William, son of Reginald de Braiose, and on his death in 1229 to William's heiress, Eva, wife of William de Cantilupe. In 1384 William la Zouche of Haringworth died seised of it (A.-D. Inq. 5 Ric. II. No. 62). At some date after 1205 and before 1238 the priory of St. Mary was founded at Cornworthy for seven religious women by some member of the Braiose family and endowed with the manor of Cornworthy (Oliver, Mon. 236). Most probably the foundation took place after the death of William de Braiose in 1229, his widow and daughter being the founders. The advowson was held of the King as a member of Totnes barony (A.-D. Inq. 1 Ed. I. No. 17). The prioress continued to hold the manor until the dissolution.

Totnes at the time of the survey was the estate of Juhel. Before 1123 Henry I. had given the castle and borough of Totnes ,a to Roger de Nonant, and at the division of the barony in 1205 the castle and borough fell to William de Braiose. On his outlawry they were given to Henry, son of earl Reginald (Testa, 1373, p. 195a), and on Henry's rebellion in 1219 were restored to Reginald and descended with his daughter to William de Cantilupe. With Milicent, Cantilupe's daughter, they passed to Ivo de la Zouche. William la Zouche held them in 1316 (Feud. Aids, 378), and they continued in his family till the attainder of lord Zouche in 1486 (Trans, xii. 162).

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1.2. Hugh Fitz-Norman. Hugh Fitz-Norman adds to Earl Hugh's grants to St. Werburgh's in 1093, lands in Lostock, Coddington, and Lea, in which "Radulfus frater ejus" joins, and he witnesses the Charter of that date as Hugh Fitz-Norman. It is certain that antiquaries confounded Hugh FitzNorman with Hugh de Mara; on the death or forfeiture of the latter his lands were escheated to Hugh Lupus, as is shown by deeds of the next grantee, Robert FitzSerlo.

1.2.1. William Fitz-Hugh-Fitz-Norman. "Hugh had a son, mentioned in the Pipe Roll of 31 Henry I."

1.3. William Fitz-Norman, whom Mr. Ellis associates with the family of Ellis, occurs in Domesday as a Sussex proprietor, also in other counties.

(The suppositions of Mr. Ellis might lead to a conclusion of the William de Frene noted in 1166 being William Fitz-Norman's grandson).

1.4. Gilbert FitzNorman, or le Marshal. The arms borne by the Marshalls Earls of Pembroke, sons of John, son of Gilbert le Marshall were no doubt derived from Geoffrey le Marshall, or de Bec, of the family of Crispin. Gilbert FitzNorman died in 1130; this date would just accord with the date of the death of Gilbert le Marshall.

1.4.1. John Fitz-Gilbert. This John's son John, and his brother and heir, William, created Earl of Pembroke, were successively sheriffs for the united counties of Surrey and Sussex, in which latter county they owned considerable property William le Marshal Maud Marshal, sp. Hugh Bigod, Earl of Norfolk. His sister was the grandmother of the wife of Roger de Montalt. Roger Bigod, Earl of Norfolk; second-cousin of Roger's wife; third-cousin of Simon de Montalt, alias Coldham?


1. Crispin de Bec.

1.1. Gilbert Crispin.

1.1.1. Gilbert and William Crispin (alias de Colville).

1.2. Ralph de Bec.

1.2.1 Walter de Bec. Robert de Bec. Robert de Heriz.

1.2.2. Geoffrey de Bec (alias Normannus). Ralph de Montalt. Robert de Montalt. Robert de Montalt. Roger de Montalt. Simon de Montalt (alias de Coldham). William Fitz-Norman (alias Ellis). William Fitz-Norman. Gilbert le Marshal.


The account that the two candidates for the Scottish Crown descended from Margaret and Isabella, daughters of David, Earl of Huntingdon, brother of William I. (the Lion), is purely mythical. John Baliol was, it was claimed, through his mother, Devorgoil, the grandson of the elder daughter, Margaret; while Robert Brus was the son of the younger daughter, Isabella.

The claim that the 1st Earl of Douglas claimed the crown in oppsition to Robert II (1370) in right of "Dornagilla Comyn", "heiress of Marjory Baliol", John Baliol's sister, is equally mythical. There is positive evidence to disprove the genealogy. The Red Convyn's great grandson and lineal heir, David, earl of Athole, was then alive, and in him any claim of Baliol representation that could be supposed to come through the Comyns must have vested. The mother of the Earl of Douglas, instead of being the fabled Dornagilla, was Beatrice, daughter of Sir David Lindsay of Crawford, and ancestress, through her second husband, of the house of Erskine. Wyntoun viii. c. 3.  It must be stated that neither John Baliol, Robert Brus, or the 1st Earl of Douglas made any such claims; the claims were assumed for them by such as Hume of Godscroft (1664), in order to construct flattering genealogies that at least sounded plausible.

The 1st Earl of Douglas would have claimed the Crown by some connection to David, Earl of Huntingdon, or his brother, William I. of Scotland; a connection now lost to us. John le Scot, son of David, Earl of Huntingdon, died in 1237 and the Coppingford overlordship was inherited by Devorgilla, daughter of his sister Margaret Galloway, who married firstly Nicholas de Stuteville and secondly John de Balliol (Farrer, op. cit. 358). This apparant union gave rise to an attempt to construct a genealogy of Douglas around it. We are asked to believe that Theobald le Fleming's father married a "Miss de Stutteville"; a fictitious sister of Nicholas de Stutteville; they the fictitious parents of William Douglas. This myth was very alluring, in that we are invited to believe "Michael le Fleming was a near kinsman of William the Conqueror, and one of the commanders of the victorious army at the battle of Hastings." It would not be charitable to comment. Theobald le Fleming's lands did not form a part of the later Douglas barony. The name Theobald does not appear in the Douglas family.

What, then, could have been the genuine claims of the 1st Earl of Douglas?

1. Gilbert le Marshal (Gilbert Norman), ob. c. 1130.

1.1. John FitzGilbert le Marshal, a minor Anglo-Norman nobleman during the reign of King Stephen, who fought in the 12th century civil war on the side of the Empress Matilda. Since at least 1130, he had been the royal marshal to Henry I.

1.1.1. John le Marshal; John's eldest son by Sybilla of Salisbury (died 1194), inherited the title of Marshal, which he held until his death. The title was then granted by King Richard to his brother William, who made the name and title famous. William Douglas? The name Douglas first appears when William Douglas witnesses a charter of Bishop Jocelyn of Glasgow in 1174, and five years later he is recorded as Lord of Douglas.

1.1.2. William Marshal, m. Isabel de Clare. Maud Marshal, 1194–1248, m.Hugh Bigod, 3rd Earl of Norfolk. Roger Bigod, Earl of Norfolk, m. Isabel, d. o. William I. of Scotland; sister of Alexander II. Gilbert Marshal, 4th Earl of Pembroke, 1197–1241, married Marjorie, youngest daughter of King William I of Scotland, sister of Alexander II. Isabel Marshal, 9/10/1200–17/1/1240, m. (1) Gilbert de Clare, 5th Earl of Hertford, whose daughter Isabel de Clare m. Robert Brus, 5th Lord of Annandale, the grandfather of Robert the Brus.

This suggestion is as plausible as any.


C. M. Stanhope 2010.