Gilbert de Gant

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Gilbert de Gaunt (de Gant, de Ghent etc.) c1040-1095 was the son of Ralph, Lord of Alost near Ghent, and Gisele of Luxembourg who had an older brother named Baldwin, and another named Ralph. This Gilbert de Ghent was a kinsman of William the Conqueror the first King of England of the House of Normandy, who defeated the native Harold II at The Battle of Hastings in 1066. Gilbert of Ghent is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 having been given titles of 172 English manors (most in Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire) but also within 14 shires where there were estates including York, Derby, Huntingdonshire, Leicestershire and Cambridgeshire. There are none named Gilbert in England before the conquest mentioned in the Domesday book.[1]

Gilbert de Gaunt was a commander (with William Malet) at the 'firing' (the part-destruction by fire of that city) of York on September 19, 1069.[2] Gilbert de Gaunt was based at his home at Folkingham (Castle) and died about 1095 being buried at Bardney Abbey near Lincoln City. He was married to Alice de Montford sur Risle in about 1071 and had numerous children amongst whom were (Sir) Walter de Gant (who had connections with the Lindsey family of Scotland and the father of Gilbert, Earl of Lincoln); Gilbert, Hugh, Robert (Lord Chancellor), Ralph, Henry, Emma and Agnes.

It is from this line that a Gilbert, whose father was Jocelyn (an Anglo-Norman landlord under Gilbert de Gaunt),[3] became St. Gilbert of Sempringham, canonised by the Roman Catholic Church and Pope Innocent III in 1202, the founder of the only English monastic order (for men and for women) in 1148. There were 26 Gilbertarian 'houses' throughout England.

Gilbert de Gaunt's mother Gisele of Luxembourg had an older brother also called Gilbert and it seems that the name may have derived from her side of the family (Gislebertus, Gylberd, Gylbard etc.).


  1. ^ Domesday Map online British Museum
  2. ^ Dalton 2002
  3. ^ Domesday Map online British Museum