Hamelin de Warenne, Earl of Surrey

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Hamelin de Warenne, Earl of Surrey (sometimes Hamelin of Anjou and, anachronistically, Hamelin Plantagenet[a] (c.1129—1202) was an English nobleman who was prominent at the courts of the Angevin kings of England, Henry II, Richard I, and John.

Life[edit]

He was an illegitimate son of Geoffrey of Anjou, and thus a half-brother of King Henry II,[1] and an uncle of Richard the Lionheart and King John.[2] King Henry arranged for him to marry the wealthiest heiresses in England, Isabel de Warenne, 4th Countess of Surrey.[3] She was the widow of William of Blois.[3] Hamelin and Isabella married in April 1164,[4] and after the marriage he was recognized as Comte de Warenne, that being the customary designation for what more technically should be Earl of Surrey.[5] In consequence of the marriage Hamelin took the de Warenne toponymic, as did his descendants.

Warenne land in England centered around Conisbrough in Yorkshire, a location in which Hamelin built a powerful castle. He also possessed the third penny (entitlement to one third of the fines levied in the county courts) of County Surrey and held the castles of Mortemer and Bellencombre in Normandy.

Hamelin joined in the denunciations of Thomas Becket in 1164, although after Becket's death he became a great believer in Becket's sainthood, having, the story goes, been cured of blindness by the saint's help. In 1176, he escorted his niece Joan to Sicily for her marriage.

He remained loyal to Henry through all the problems of the later part of the king's reign when many nobles deserted him, and continued as a close supporter of his nephew Richard I. During Richard's absence on the Third Crusade, he took the side of the regent William Longchamp. Hamelin appeared in the second coronation of King Richard in 1194 and at King John's coronation in 1199.

He died in 1202 and was buried at the Chapter House at Lewes Priory, in Sussex. He was succeeded by his son, William de Warenne, 5th Earl of Surrey.[6]

Family[edit]

By his wife Isabel de Warenne he had:

References[edit]

  1. ^ Malden, Henry Elliot, A History of Surrey, (Eliot Stock, 1900), 105.
  2. ^ Detlev Schwennicke, Europäische Stammtafeln: Stammtafeln zur Geschichte der Europäischen Staaten, Band II, (Marburg, Germany: Verlag von J. A. Stargardt, 1984), Taflen 46, 82-3
  3. ^ a b John Guy, Thomas Becket: Warrior, Priest, Rebel (New York: The Random House Publishing Group, 2012), p. 161
  4. ^ George Edward Cokayne, The complete peerage; or, A history of the House of lords and all its members from the earliest times, Volume XII, Part 1, Ed. Geoffrey H. White (London: The St. Catherine Press, Ltd., 1953), p. 500
  5. ^ George Edward Cokayne, The complete peerage; or, A history of the House of lords and all its members from the earliest times, Volume XII, Part 1, Ed. Geoffrey H. White (London: The St. Catherine Press, Ltd., 1953), p. 500 n. (h)
  6. ^ Sussex Archaeological Collections relating to the History and Antiquities of the County, Vol.35, Sussex Archaeological Society, (H. Wolff, 1887), 8.
  7. ^ a b c d George Edward Cokayne, The complete peerage; or, A history of the House of lords and all its members from the earliest times, Vol. XII/1, Ed. Geoffrey H. White (London: The St. Catherine Press, Ltd., 1953), p. 500 n. g
  8. ^ Walter Lee Sheppard, Jr., 'Royal Bye-Blows, The Illegitimate Children of the English Kings From William I to Edward III', The New England Historical and Genealogical Register, Vol. 119 (April 1965), p. 98

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "It is much to be wished that the surname "Plantagenet," which since the time of Charles II, has been freely given to all descendants of Geoffrey of Anjou, had some historical basis which would justify its use, for it forms a most convenient method of referring to the Edwardian kings and their numerous descendants. The fact is, however, as has been pointed out by Sir James Ramsay and other writers of our day, that the name, although a personal emblem of the aforesaid Geoffrey, was never borne by any of his descendants before Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York (father of Edward IV), who assumed it, apparently about 1448. V.G., The Complete Peerage, Vol. 1, p. 183 note (c)
  2. ^ Technically they were half first cousins, both being grandchildren of Geoffrey V, Count of Anjou by different mothers. See Schwenicke, Europaische Stammtaleln (ES), Band II, Tafeln 82, 83; ES, III/3, tafel 355; Sheppard, 'Royal Bye Blows', NEHGR, 119, 97. Her given name is not known for a certainty


Peerage of England
Preceded by
Isabel de Warenne
Earl of Surrey
1199–1202
Succeeded by
William de Warenne