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Vol II File 5: The Paternal Ancestry of Homer Beers James
7. Beauchamp Line (Earls of Warwick)
Ref: "The Ligon Family in England"
Ref: Burke, pp. 29-34.
Among the most eminent Norman families in
the company of William the Conqueror, was that of Beauchamp, and
among those that shared most liberally in the spoils of the conquest
was Hugh de Beauchamp. See Burke, pg. 29.
1. Hugh (Hugue) de Beauchamp, the companion
in arms of William the Conqueror, obtained large estates in Hertford,
Buchingham, and Bedfordshire, and was the founder of the house
of Beauchamp. This Hugh had the following children:
1. Simon de Beauchamp, d.s.p.
2. Payne de Beauchamp, ancestor of the Beauchamps
of Bedford, that barony having been conferred upon him by King
3. Walter de Beauchamp, the third son. See
4. Milo de Beauchamp, of Eaton, co. Bedford.
5. Adeline Beauchamp, married Walter Le
Espec, Lord of Kirkham and Helmsley, co. York.
Regarding his third son, Walter, there have
been some doubts expressed with regard to the question of his
having been the son of Hugh. Sir H. Nicholas stated him to have
been "supposed of the same family."
2. Walter de Beauchamp of Elmsley Castle,
co. Gloucester, married Emeline Abitot, daughter
and heiress of Urso de Abitot, Constable of the castle of Worcester
and hereditary sheriff of Worcestershire (who was brother of Robert
le Despencer, steward to the Conqueror).
He was invested with that sheriffalty by King Henry I., and obtained
a grant from the same monarch (to whom he was a steward) of all
the lands belonging to Roger de Worcester, with a confirmation
of certain lands given to him by Adelise, widow of his father-in-law,
the said Urso de Abitot.
This marriage happened after the Conquest;
for at that time the General Survey was made, the name of Beauchamp
is not once mentioned as lord of any manor in England. But Urso
de Abitot had manors almost in very part of it. He being hereditary
sheriff, his office was to keep this part of the new-conquered
kingdom in subjection; it was necessary, therefore, that his power
should be very great, to enable him to withstand any neighboring
prince inclined to rebel, and that he should have influence in
every part of the county. Robert de Abitot, the Conqueror's steward,
built Elmsley Castle upon an eminence under Bredon Hill, and dying
without issue, the manor and castle descended to his brother,
Urso. The hereditary office of sheriff by this marriage descended
to the Beauchamps, in which family it continued till the 10th
year of King Edward IV, when Richard Nevill, the Earl of Salibury,
in right of his wife, Ann, sister and sole heiress of Henry Beauchamp,
Duke and Earl of Warwick, being slain in Barnet Field fighting
against the king, lost his office.
Walter de Beauchamp was succeeded, as well
in his estates as in the royal stewardship, by his son, William.
3. William de Beauchamp, for his zeal
in the cause of the Empress Maud, was dispossessed of the castle
of Worcester by King Stephen, to which, and all his other honors
and estates, however, he was restored by King Henry II.; and in
that monarch's reign, besides the sheriffalty of Worcestershire,
which he enjoyed by inheritance, he was sheriff of Warwickshire
(2nd year of Henry II.), sheriff of Gloucestershire (from the
3rd to the 9th year of Henry II., inclusive), and sheriff of Herefordshire
(from the 8th to the 16th year of Henry II., inclusive). Upon
the levy of the assessment towards the marriage portion of King
Henry's daughters, this powerful feudal lord certified his knight's
fees to the amount of fifteen. He married Maud Braose, daughter
of William de Braose, Lord Braose, of Gower,
and was succeeded, at his decease, by his son, William.
4. William de Beauchamp married Joan Walerie, daughter
of Thomas Walerie. He died before
the 13th year of King John's reign (1211-1212), succeeded by his
son, Walter (a minor, whose wardship and marriage Roger de Mortimer
and Isabel, his wife, obtained for 3,000 marks).
5. Walter de Beauchamp was appointed
Governor of Hanley Castle, co. Worcester, in the 17th year of
King John, and entrusted with the custody of the same shire in
that turbulent year. Walter de Beauchamp married Bertha Braose daughter
of William de Braose, Lord Braose,
by whom he had two sons as follows:
1. Walcheline de Beauchamp. See below.
2. James de Beauchamp
Of the nobleman we find further, that, being
one of the baron-marchers, he gave security to the king for his
faithful services with the other lords-marchers, until peace should
be fully settled in the realm; and for the better performance
thereof, gave up James, his younger son, as a hostage. He died
in 1235, and was succeeded by his son, Walcheline.
6. Walcheline de Beauchamp, omitted in Sir
H. Nicholas' account of the family, married Joane Mortimer, daughter
of Roger Mortimer, Lord Mortimer, and
dying in the same year as his father, was succeeded by an only
7. William de Beauchamp, 5th Baron Beauchamp,
feudal lord of Elmley, attended King Henry III., in the 37th year
of his reign (1252-53), into Gascoigne, and in two years afterwards
marched under the banner of Robert de Clare, Earl of Gloucester,
against the Scots. In the 41st year of the same reign he had
summons with other illustrious persons to meet the king at Chester
on the feast day of St. Peter de Vincula, well fitted with
horse ands arms to oppose the incursions of Llewellyn, Prince
of Wales. Lord Beauchamp married Isabel Mauduit, daughter
of William Mauduit, of Hanslape, co. Bucks, heritable chamberlain
of the exchequer, and sister and heiress of William Mauduit, Earl
of Warwick (who inherited that dignity from his cousin, Margery
de Newburgh, Countess of Warwick, in the year 1263).
He made his will in 1268, the year in which he died. He left
several daughters and four sons as follows:
8. William de Beauchamp, 1st Earl of Warwick
of the Beauchamp family, inherited not only the feudal barony
of Elmley from his father, but had previously derived from his
mother the Earldom of Warwick (originally possessed by the Newburghs),
and the barony of Hanslape (which had belonged to the Mauduits).
This eminent nobleman was a distinguished captain in the Welsh
and Scottish wars of King Edward I. "In the 23rd year of
which reign (1294-95), being in Wales with the king," as
Dugdale relates, "he performed a notable exploit; namely,
hearing that a great body of the Welsh were got together in a
plain, betwixt two woods, and to secure themselves, had fastened
their pikes to the ground, sloping towards their assailants, he
marched thither with a choice company cross-bowmen and archers,
and in the night time encompassing them about, put betwixt every
two horsemen, one cross-bowman, which cross-bowman killing many
of them that held the pikes, the horse charged in suddenly, and
made a great slaughter. This was done near Montgomery."
He married Maud FitzJohn,
widow of Girard de Furnival (See Burke,
Pg. 225), and one of the four daughters and co-heiresses of Richard
FitzJohn, son of John FitzGeoffery, Chief Justice of Ireland.
She died in 1301. They had the following issue:
1. Guy de Beauchamp, his successor, 2nd
Earl, so called in memory of his celebrated predecessor, the Saxon,
Guy, Earl of Warwick. He acquired high military renown in the
martial reign of Edward I., distinguishing himself at the battle
of Falkirk, for which he was rewarded with extensive grants of
lands in Scotland, at the siege of Caerlaverock, and upon different
occasions beyond the sea. In the reign of Edward II. he likewise
played a very important part. In 1310 he was in the commission
appointed by parliament to draw up regulations for "the well
governing of the kingdom and of the king's household," in
consequence of the corrupt influence exercised at that period
by Piers Gaveston, in the affairs of the realm, through the unbounded
partiality of the king; and in two years afterwards, when that
unhappy favorite fell into the hands of his enemies upon the surrender
of Scarborough Castle, his lordship violently seized upon his
person, and after a summary trial, caused him to be beheaded at
Blacklow Hill, near Warwick. The earl's hostility to Gaveston
is said to have been much increased by learning that the favorite
had nicknamed him "the Black Dog of Ardenne."
For this unwarrantable proceeding his lordship, and all others
concerned therein, received within two years the royal pardon,
but he is supposed to have eventually perished by poison, administered
in revenge by the partisans of Gaveston. The earl married Alice,
relict of Thomas de Layboiurne, daughter (by Alice de Bohun) of
Ralph de Toni, of Flamsted, co. Herts, and sister and heiress
of Robert de Toni, by whom he had issue as follows:
1. Thomas de Beauchamp, his successor, 3rd
Earl, regarding whom we find King Edward II. in two years subsequently
soliciting a dispensation from the Pope, to enable him to marry
his cousin, Catherine, daughter of Roger de Mortimer, Lord of
Wigmore, under whose guardianship the young earl had been placed;
an alliance eventually formed, when his lordship had completed
his fifteenth year. In two years, afterwards, the earl by special
license from the crown, was allowed to do homage, and to assume
the hereditary offices of Sheriff of Worcestershire, and Chamberlain
of the Exchequer. This nobleman sustained in the brilliant reign
of Edward III. the high military renown of his illustrious progenitor,
and became distinguished in arms almost from boyhood. So early
as the third year of that monarch, he commanded the left wing
of the king's army at Wyzonfosse, where Edward proposed to give
the French battle, and from that period was the constant companion
of the king, and his gallant son, in all their splendid campaigns.
At Cressy, he had a principal command in the van of the English
army, under the Prince of Wales, and at Poitiers, where Dugdale
says he fought so long and so stoutly, that his hand was galled
with the exercise of his sword and pole-axe; he personally took
William de Melleun, Archbishop of Sens, prisoner, for whose ransom
he obtained 8,000 marks. After these heroic achievements in France,
the earl was arrayed under the banner of the cross, and reaped
fresh laurels on the plains of Palestine, whence upon his return
he brought home the son of the King of Lithuania, answering for
the new convert himself at the baptismal font; for his lordship
was not more distinguished by his valor than his piety, as his
numerous and liberal donations to the church while living, and
bequests at his decease, testify. He rebuilt the walls of Warwick
Castle, which had been demolished in the time of the Mauduits;
adding fortified gateways, and embattled towers; he likewise founded
the choir of the collegiate church of St. Mary, built a booth
hall in the market place, and made the town of Warwick toll free.
He was a Knight of the Garter, being one of the original knights.
He died November 13, 1369, of the plague in Calais. He had issue,
and he was succeeded by his son, Thomas.
2. John de Beauchamp, d.s.p.
3. Maud Beauchamp, married Geoffrey Say,
4. Emma Beauchamp, married Rowland Odingsels.
5. Isabel Beauchamp, married John Clinton.
6. Elizabeth Beauchamp, married Thomas Astley,
7. Lucia, married Robert or Roger de Napton.
2. Isabel Beauchamp. See below.
3. Maud Beauchamp, married _______ Rithco.
4. Margaret Beauchamp, married John Sudley.
5. Anne Beauchamp, a nun at Shouldham, co.
Norfolk, a monastery founded by William's maternal great grandfather.
6. Amy Beauchamp, a nun at Shouldham, also,
with her sister, Anne.
William de Beauchamp, 1st Earl of Warwick
of that family, died in 1298, having previous to his mother's
death used the style and title of Earl of Warwick, with what legality
appears very doubtful, and was succeeded by his eldest son, Guy.
9. Isabel Beauchamp married (1) Patrick (Peter) Chaworth, of Kidwelly,
co. Carmarthen, who died in 1383, and (2) Hugh Despencer, Senior, Lord Despencer.
She died in 1306. Her only daughter, Maud, was by her first
husband. From her second marriage there was a son, Hugh Despencer, Junior. See continuation
of this lineage in the Despencer Line in Volume II.
10. Maud Chaworth, born 1298, married
Earl of Lancaster, in 1317. He died September 22, 1345. She
died in 1322.
See the continuation of this lineage in the