William de Warenne, 1st Earl of Surrey

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William de Warenne
Died 1088
Title 1st Earl of Surrey (1st creation)
Tenure 1088
Successor William de Warenne, 2nd Earl of Surrey
Spouse(s) Gundred, Countess of Surrey
a sister of Richard Gouet
Parents Ranulf de Warenne
Emma

William de Warenne, 1st Earl of Surrey, Lord of Lewes, Seigneur de Varennes (died 1088), was a Norman nobleman created Earl of Surrey under William II Rufus. He is among the few who are documented as having fought for William the Conqueror at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. At the time of the Domesday Survey, he held extensive lands in 13 counties including the Rape of Lewes in Sussex, now divided between the ceremonial counties of East Sussex and West Sussex.

Early career[edit]

William was a son of Rodulf or Ralph de Warenne[1] and Emma, and reported to have descended from a sibling of duchess Gunnor, wife of duke Richard I. Chronicler Robert of Torigny reported, in his additions to the Gesta Normannorum Ducum of William of Jumièges, that William de Warenne and Anglo-Norman baron Roger de Mortimer were brothers, both sons of an unnamed niece of Gunnor. Unfortunately, Robert's genealogies are somewhat confused, (elsewhere he gives Roger as son of William, and yet again makes both sons of Walter de Saint Martin), and several of Robert's stemma appear to contain too few generations.[2] Orderic Vitalis describes William as Roger's consanguineus, literally "cousin", more generically a term of close kinship, but not typically used to describe brothers, and Roger de Mortimer appears to have been a generation older than William de Warenne.[3][2]

Charters report several earlier men associated with Warenne. A Radulf de Warenne appears in two charters, one dated between 1027 and 1035, the second from about 1050 and naming his wife, Beatrice. In 1059, a Radulf and wife Emma appear along with their sons Radulf and William. These occurrences have typically been taken to represent a single Radulf with successive wives, of which Beatrice was the mother of William and hence identical to the Gunnorid niece described by Robert de Torigny,[4][5] yet the 1059 charter explicitly names Emma as William's mother.[2] Reevaluation of surviving charters led Katherine Keats-Rohan to suggest that, as he appears to have done elsewhere, Robert of Torigny compressed two generations into one, with Radulf (I) and Beatrice being parents of Radulf (II) de Warenne and of Roger de Mortimer (a Roger son of Radulf de Warenne appears in a charter dated 1040/1053), and Radulf (II) in turn married Emma and as attested by the 1059 charter, they had Radulf (III), the heir in Normandy, and William. Associations with the village of Vascœuil led to identification of the Warenne progenitrix with a widow Beatrice, daughter of Tesselin, vicomte of Rouen, appearing there in 1054/60. Robert of Torigny shows a different vicomte of Rouen to have married a niece of Gunnor, perhaps suggesting that it was through Beatrice that William de Warenne was linked with Gunnor's family.[2] [a]

William was from the hamlet of Varenne, near to Arques-la-Bataille, Duchy of Normandy, now in the canton of Bellencombre, Seine Maritime.[9][10][11] At the beginning of Duke William’s reign, Radulf de Warenne was not a major landholder, and as a second son, William de Warenne did not stand to inherit the family’s small estates. During the rebellions of 1052–54, the young William de Warenne proved himself a loyal adherent to the Duke and played a significant part in the Battle of Mortemer for which he was rewarded with lands confiscated from his kinsman, Roger of Mortemer, including the Castle of Mortimer and most of the surrounding lands.[12] At about the same time he acquired lands at Bellencombre including the castle which became the centre of William de Warenne’s holdings in Normandy.[13][14]

Conquest of England[edit]

William was among the Norman barons summoned to the Council of Lillebonne by Duke William when the decision was made to oppose King Harold II's accession to the throne of England.[13][15] He fought at the Battle of Hastings and was well rewarded with numerous holdings. The Domesday book records his lands stretched over thirteen counties and included the important Rape of Lewes in Sussex, several manors in Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex, the significant manor of Conisbrough in Yorkshire and Castle Acre in Norfolk, which became his caput (see below).[13][14] He is one of very few proven companions of William the Conqueror known to have fought at the Battle of Hastings in 1066.[16][17][18] He fought against rebels at the Isle of Ely in 1071, where he showed a special desire to hunt down Hereward the Wake, who had killed his brother-in-law Frederick the year before.[19][20] Hereward is supposed to have unhorsed him with an arrow shot.[21]

Later career[edit]

Sometime between 1078 and 1082,[22] William and his wife Gundred traveled to Rome visiting monasteries along the way. In Burgundy they were unable to go any further due to a war between Emperor Henry IV and Pope Gregory VII. They visited Cluny Abbey and were impressed with the monks and their dedication. William and Gundred decided to found a Cluniac priory on their own lands in England. William restored buildings for an abbey. They sent to Hugh, the abbot of Cluny, for monks to come to England at their monastery. At first Hugh was reluctant but he finally sent several monks, including Lazlo who was to be the first abbot. The house they founded was Lewes Priory, dedicated to St. Pancras,[23][24] the first Cluniac priory in England.[25]

William participated in the siege of Saint-Suzanne, supporting the king against some rebellious lords. William was loyal to William II,[19] and it was probably in early 1088 that he was created Earl of Surrey.[26] He was mortally wounded at the First Siege of Pevensey Castle and died 24 June 1088 at Lewes, Sussex, and was buried next to his wife Gundred at the Chapterhouse of Lewes Priory.[27][28]

Family[edit]

He married first, before 1070, Gundred.[29][30] sister of Gerbod the Fleming, 1st Earl of Chester.[31]

William married secondly a sister of Richard Gouet, who survived him.[32]

Issue[edit]

By Gundred, William had:

He had no issue by his second wife.

Landholdings in the Domesday Book[edit]

See also[edit]

The rebellion of 1088

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ On Robert's genealogies, see also G. H. White,[5] Eleanor Searle,[6] Elisabeth van Houts,[7] and Kathleen Thompson.[8]
  2. ^ One or both of the neighbouring modern villages of Great Massingham and Little Massingham
  3. ^ There are three places in Norfolk called Rockland. Rockland All Saints and Rockland St Peter lie to the south-west of Norwich, and together make up the modern civil parish of Rocklands. Rockland St Mary lies to the south-east of Norwich. It is uncertain which one was meant. Rockland St Peter is listed separately, and Rockland St Mary was mentioned in the Domesday Book; but neither of those facts helps resolve the question

References[edit]

  1. ^ C. P. Lewis, "Warenne, William (I) de, first earl of Surrey (d. 1088)" (Oxford, UK: OUP, 2004) Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d K. S. B. Keats-Rohan, "Aspects of Torigny's Genealogy Revisited", Nottingham Medieval Studies 37:21–27
  3. ^ Lewis C. Loyd, "The Origins of the Family of Warenne", Yorkshire Archaeological Journal, 31:97–113
  4. ^ Thomas Stapleton, "Observations in disapproval of a pretended marriage of William de Warren, earl of Surrey with a daughter ... of William the Conqueror", Archaeological Journal, 3:1–12
  5. ^ a b G. H. White, "The Sisters and Nieces of Gunnor, Duchess of Normandy", Genealogist, n. s. 37:57–65
  6. ^ Eleanor Searle, Predatory Kinship and the Creation of Norman Power, 840–1066, pp. 100–105
  7. ^ Elisabeth M. C. van Houts, "Robert of Torigni as Genealogist", Studies in Medieval History presented to R. Allen Brown, pp. 215–33
  8. ^ Kathleen Thompson, "The Norman Aristocracy before 1066: the Example of the Montgomerys", Historical Research 60:251–63.
  9. ^ K.S.B. Keats-Rohan, Domesday People, a Prosopography of Persons Occurring in English Documents 1066-1166 (Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 1999), p. 480.
  10. ^ Lewis C. Loyd, The Origins of Some Anglo-Norman Families, ed. Charles Travis Clay (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1992) pp. 111–12
  11. ^ G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, Vol. XII/1 (London: The St. Catherine Press, 1953), p. 491.
  12. ^ David C. Douglas, William the Conqueror (Berkeley; Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1964), p. 100.
  13. ^ a b c G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, Vol. XII/1 (London: The St. Catherine Press, 1953), p. 493.
  14. ^ a b William Farrer, Early Yorkshire Charters, Volume VIII; The Honour of Warenne (The Yorkshire Archaeological Society, 1949), p. 3.
  15. ^ Elisabeth M.C. van Houts, "The Ship List of William the Conqueror",Anglo-Norman Studies X; Proceedings of the Battle Conference 1987, ed. R. Allen Brown (Woodbridge: Boydell Press, 1988), pp. 159 and 161.
  16. ^ The Gesta Guillelmi of William of Poitiers, ed & trans. R.H.C. Davis and Marjorie Chibnall (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998), pp. 134-5
  17. ^ G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, Vol. XII/1 (London: The St. Catherine Press, 1953), Appendix L, "Companions of the Conqueror", pp. 47–48.
  18. ^ A. Duchesne, Historiae Normannorum Scriptores Antiqui (Lutetiae Parisiorum 1619), pp. 202 and 204 (one of 12 nobles named by William of Poitiers).
  19. ^ a b  William Hunt (1899). "Warenne, William (d. 1088)". In Lee, Sidney. Dictionary of National Biography. 59. London: Smith, Elder & Co. pp. 372–373. 
  20. ^ Elisabeth van Houts, "Frederick, Brother-in-Law of William of Warenne", Anglo-Saxon England, New York, Vol. 28 (1999), p. 218.
  21. ^ Appleby, Outlaws in Medieval and Early Modern England (2009), pp. 28–29.
  22. ^ William Farrer; Charles Travis Clay, Early Yorkshire Charters, Volume VIII; The Honour of Warenne (The Yorkshire Archaeological Society, 1949), p. 4
  23. ^ Brian Golding, "The Coming of the Cluniacs", Anglo-Norman Studies III; Proceedings of the Battle Conference 1980, Vol. III ( Woodbridge: Boydell Press, 1981), pp. 65 and 67.
  24. ^ William Farrer; Charles Travis Clay, Early Yorkshire Charters, Vol. VIII; The Honour of Warenne (The Yorkshire Archaeological Society, 1949), pp. 50–55.
  25. ^ David Knowles, The Monastic Order in England, 2nd ed. (Cambridge University Press, 1966), pp. 151–52.
  26. ^ C. P. Lewis, The Earldom of Surrey and the Date of the Domesday Book, Historical Research; The Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research, Vo. 63, Issue 152 (Oct. 1990), p. 335 (between the very end of 1087 and March 24, 1088).
  27. ^ G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, vol. xii/1 (The St. Catherine Press, London, 1953), pp. 494–95.
  28. ^ Hyde Abbey, Liber Monasterii de Hyda: Comprising a Chronicle of the affairs of England, ed. Edward Edwards (Longmans, Green, Reader, and Dyer, London, 1866), p. 299.
  29. ^ G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, Vol iv (The St. Catherine Press, London, 1916), p. 670.
  30. ^ David C. Douglas, William The Conqueror (University of California Press, Berkeley & Los Angeles, 1964) pp. 267 and 392.
  31. ^ Elisabeth van Houts, 'Frederick, Brother-in-Law of William of Warenne', Anglo-Saxon England, Vol. 28 (1999), pp. 218–20.
  32. ^ G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, vol. xii/1 (The St. Catherine Press, London, 1953), p. 494 & note (l).
  33. ^ G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, vol. xii/1 (The St. Catherine Press, London, 1953), pp. 495–96.
  34. ^ a b G. E. Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, vol. xii/1 (The St. Catherine Press, London, 1953), p. 494 note (b).
  35. ^ Detlev Schwennicke, Europäische Stammtafeln: Stammtafeln zur Geschichte der Europäischen Staaten, Neue Folge, Band III Teilband 4 (Marburg, Germany: J. A. Stargardt, 1989), Tafel 699.
  36. ^ K. S. B. Keats-Rohan, Domesday Descendants: A Prosopography of Persons Occurring in English Documents 1066-1166, Vol. II (UK, Rochester, NY: Boydell & Brewer, 2002), p. 408.
  37. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 186
  38. ^ a b c d e f g The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 187.
  39. ^ a b The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 47.
  40. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 188.
  41. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 189.
  42. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 190.
  43. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 191.
  44. ^ a b c d e f The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 48.
  45. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 192.
  46. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 193.
  47. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 194.
  48. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 195.
  49. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l The Domesday Book: England's Heritage Then and Now, ed. Thomas Hinde (UK: Coombe Books, 1996), p. 196.

Sources[edit]

  • Loyd, L. C.,"The Origin of the Family of Warenne", Yorkshire Archaeological Journal, Vol. xxxi (1933), pp. 97–113.
Peerage of England
New title Earl of Surrey
(1st creation)
1088
Succeeded by
William de Warenne