Sir Richard Herbert

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For other people of this name, see Richard Herbert.
The tomb of Sir Richard Herbert of Ewyas (died 1510) – – 710352
Arms of Herbert: Per pale azure and gules, three lions rampant argent

Sir Richard Herbert (died 1510) of Ewyas, Herefordshire, was an English nobleman, politician, knight, gentleman, and courtier. He was the illegitimate son of William Herbert, 1st Earl of Pembroke and Maud, daughter of Adam ap Howell Graunt (Gwynn).[1][2][3] Richard had a full brother named George.[3]

Sir Richard Herbert of Ewyas is distinguished from his uncle, Sir Richard Herbert of Coldbrook, brother of his father William Herbert, 1st Earl of Pembroke.[4]

Herbert legacy[edit]

While the Earl of Pembroke title went to his younger, legitimate half-brother William,[3] Richard realised success through his own merit and his descendants: "Sir Richard Herbert, of Ewyas, who, though illegitimate, is ancestor of the men who have really, in modern times, rendered the name of Herbert illustrious."[5]

In 1465, Richard Herbert was granted Westminster, manors of Grove, Radnore, Mookas, Brutescourt, Throuckeston, Westhide, Egelton, Redehire, Howton and Wormeton Tirell, co. Hereford.[6]

He was successful as a Gentleman Usher to Henry VII and appointed Constable and Porter of Abergavenny Castle on 22 July 1509.[3][4] While Richard is most frequently titled "Sir Richard Herbert," there is debate as to whether Richard was a knight. Richard Herbert in "The Knights of England" was knighted in 1513, three years after this subject's death.[7] According to Sil, Richard was never knighted, but was an Esquire.[3] Richard is titled Esquire in 1465 when he was granted manors and lands.[6]

In many sources, however,[1][2][4][5] Richard is referred to as "Sir Richard Herbert." An article titled "The Family of Herbert" from The Gentleman's Magazine states that he was knighted by King Henry VIII,[8] in which case Richard would have been knighted in the last year of Richard's life (died 1510) and the first year of Henry VIII's reign, which began in 1509.


Richard married Margaret, daughter of Sir Matthew Cradock of Swansea and Alice (Jane) Mancell, widow of John Malefant.[1] Sir Matthew Cradow was receiver of Glamorgan,[3] through whom Castleston Castle passed to his daughter Margaret and Richard.[9]


Richard and Margaret had three sons, one of whom was William Herbert, 1st Earl of Pembroke, who became the 1st Earl of Pembroke (2nd Creation)[5] on 11 October 1551.[3] Existing Earls of Pembroke[2] and Montgomery, and of Carnarvon, of the Duke of Powis, of Pool Castle (extinct 1747), descend from Sir Richard Herbert. Through the female line, of the Marquis of Bute, derives his Glamorganshire estates.[5] William married Anne Parr, sister of Queen Catherine Parr, the sixth and last wife of Henry VIII. William served Henry VIII in many capacities, including Chief Gentleman on the Privy Chamber and the Privy Council and Receiver of the King's revenues. He was knighted in 1544 and later elected to the Knights of the Garter.[4] The other son was Sir George Herbert of Swansea[10] was ancestor to the Herberts of Swansea, Cogan, Cookham and the White Friars, extinct in 1739. Candleston Castle passed from Richard and Margaret to George.[9]

Richard also was father to the illegitimate Herberts of Dinas Powis and Hengastell[11] (Hen Gastell).


Richard died between 2 and 12 September 1510 and was buried in Abergavenny Church; his tomb has a lavishly decorated wall arch and an alabaster effigy.[1][12]


  1. ^ a b c d  Lee, Sidney, ed. (1885–1900). "Herbert, William (d.1469)". Dictionary of National Biography. 220. London: Smith, Elder & Co. p. 220. 
  2. ^ a b c John Burke (1831). A General and Heraldic Dictionary of the Peerages of England, Ireland, and Scotland. London: Henry Colburn and Richard Bentley. pp. 259–260. OCLC 4645457. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Narasingha Prosad Sil (2001). Tudor Placemen and Statesmen: Select Case Histories. Madison [NJ], London, Cranbury, [NJ]: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, Associated University Presses. p. 95. ISBN 0-8386-3912-7. 
  4. ^ a b c d Sanford, John Langton; Townsend, Meredith (2004) [1865]. The Great Governing Families of England. 2. Adamant Media Corporation. pp. 171–173. ISBN 1-4212-7842-1. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Some Notice of William Herbert, First Earl of Pembroke of the Present Creation". Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Magazine. Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Society. 17–18: 83. 1878. 
  6. ^ a b Great Britain Public Record Office. Calendar of the patent rolls preserved in the Public record office. p. 7. 
  7. ^ Shaw, W (1906). The knights of England; a complete record from the earliest time to the present day of the knights of all the orders of chivalry in England, Scotland, and Ireland, and of knights bachelors; Incorporating a complete list of knights bachelors dubbed in Ireland, compiled by G. D. Burtchaell. London: Printed and published for the Central chancery of the orders of knighthood, Sherratt and Hughes. 
  8. ^ Sylvanus Urban, ed. (1845). "The Family of Herbert". The Gentleman's Magazine. London: John Moyer Nichols & Sons. 178: 596. 
  9. ^ a b Spurgeon, C (2000). An inventory of the Ancient Monuments in Glamorgan. 3. Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales. p. 409. 
  10. ^ Malcolmson, C (1999). Heart-work: George Herbert and the Protestant ethic. Stanford, CA USA: Stanford University Press. p. 16. 
  11. ^ Nichols, J, ed. (1863). The Herald and Genealogist. 1. London: John Boyer Nichols and Sons. p. 34. 
  12. ^ Jeremy Bolwell (2008). "The tomb of Sir Richard Herbert of Ewyas". Retrieved 9 February 2011.