GEN-MEDIEVAL-L ArchivesArchiver > GEN-MEDIEVAL > 2003-01 > 1042011926
From: (Brad Verity)
Subject: Amie de Gaveston Rebuttal - Part 1: Clare Inheritance
Date: 7 Jan 2003 23:45:26 -0800
Happy New Year to everyone. I've still been researching the Gavestons
in the vast primary sources the UCLA Library has. Since last year's
Amie debate meandered all over the place, perhaps a series of posts
that summarize the arguments from last year and incorporate evidence
recently uncovered can help those who search the archives later on
down the line.
PART 1 - CLARE INHERITANCE
The key factor standing in the way of those who argued that Amie was
the daughter of Margaret de Clare born in January 1312, is the Clare
inheritance. Amie never participated in it, and so could not have
been Margaret de Clare's daughter.
Robert Todd (RT) argued in his second TPC article that the reason Amie
did not participate in the Clare inheritance was because all of
Margaret's issue by Piers Gaveston was excluded from the Clare
inheritance by Edward II when he entailed Margaret's third on her, her
second husband Hugh d'Audley, and the issue of their bodies. "The
Clare lands were partitioned amongst the husbands of the three
heiresses by the king, with Margaret's share of the lands of those
estates and appurtenances confined to Hugh and Margaret's heirs." [RT,
TPC Winter 2001, pg. 251]
For evidence, RT argues that
A) Edward I did a similar maneuvuer in 1290, when he entailed the
Clare estates on new son-in-law Gilbert the Red, Earl of Gloucester
and Hertford, daughter Joan of Acre, and the heirs of their bodies.
Michael Altschul, in his book on the Clare family, states that
Gilbert's daughter's by his first marriage were excluded as potential
heiresses in the event of the failure of the male line.
B) The same procedure was done on 13 May 1317 when Edward II "lately
granted to Margaret, whom Hugh de Audele has married...the king to do
them a special favour grants the same to the said Hugh and Margaret
and the heirs of their bodies to hold to the value of 2,000 marks a
year, with reversion failing issue to himself and his successors."
[RT, TPC Winter 2001, pg. 248]
C) Finally, on 16 March 1337, when Hugh d'Audley was created Earl of
Gloucester by Edward III, it was limited to himself and his heirs in
perpetuity. "Presumably, this limitation was meant to bar any future
children by Margaret and possibly her third husband, should Hugh
d'Audley die without issue. Another effect of this limitation was to
bar Joan or any other child of Margaret and/or Piers from inheriting
those lands." [RT, TPC Winter 2001, pg. 249]
Let's look at each point.
A) THE 1290 GRANT
A look at the May 1290 grant of the lands of the earldoms of
Gloucester and Hertford (aka the Clare inheritance), shows Altschul
was partially right - Gilbert the Red's two daughters by his first
wife Alice de Lusignan were excluded as potential heiresses when their
half-brother Gilbert, Earl of Gloucester (b. 1291) was killed at
Bannockburn in 1314. But not because the 1290 entailment specifically
excluded them, but because it gave the precedence to the issue of
their father with his second wife Joan of Acre.
According to the Calendar of Charter Rolls, there were four specific
grants on 27 May 1290 at Westminster - the first covered all of Earl
Gilbert the Red's castles and lands in Wales, the second all of his
castles and lands in England, the third, all his castles and lands in
Ireland; and the fourth, lands of Gilbert the Red in England and
Wales, that for whatever reason, King Edward I wished to single out
and grant in a separate transaction. Here is the first grant:
"Whereas Gilbert de Clare, earl of Gloucester and Hertford lately, for
himself and his heirs, surrendered to the king by charter all his
castles and lands in Wales, to be disposed of at the king's pleasure;
gift, of special grace to the said earl and Joan his wife, the king's
daughter, of all the said castles and lands, saving those by which the
said surrender the king has ... [snip of the list of Welsh lands the
king granted to them separately in the fourth grant]; to be held by
the said earl and Joan his wife, and the lawful heirs of their bodies
from the king by the services previously due there from with all
rights, regalities, knight's fees, advowsons and other appurtenances
thereto belonging, just as the said earl held them on the day on which
he surrendered them to the king; REMAINDER, excepting as aforesaid
[the Welsh lands granted separately in the fourth grant], TO THE RIGHT
HEIRS OF THE SAID EARL [emphasis mine]."
The second ("to be held in the form of the charter above") and third
("to be held in the form of the last two charters") grants do not need
to be repeated.
The fourth grant, that of specific Welsh and English lands of Earl
Gilbert the Red that the king separated out, adds information as to
how these Clare inheritance lands were to be held:
"[snip of list of the specific lands]; gift to the said earl and Joan,
his wife, the king's daughter, of the aforesaid castles and lands, to
be held by them and the lawful heirs of their bodies from the king by
the services previously due therefrom with all regalities, knights'
fees, advowsons and other appurtenances thereto belonging, just as the
said earl held them on the day on which he surrendered them to the
king; remainder on the death of the said earl without heirs of his
body by the said Joan or on the death of these heirs, to the said Joan
to hold as her inheritance, provided that, if heirs have been born of
the said Gilbert and Joan, the said Joan shall not alienate any of the
said castles and lands away from such heirs; AND IF THE SAID JOAN DIE
BEFORE THE SAID EARL WITHOUT HEIRS OF THEIR BODIES BEGOTTEN, ALL THE
SAID CASTLES AND LANDS SHALL REVERT TO THE SAID EARL AND HIS HEIRS
*A) The 1290 Clare grant did not directly disinherit Earl Gilbert the
Red's daughters from his first marriage. It did bump them behind any
surviving issue of Joan of Acre.
*B) Some historians have claimed the 1290 Clare grant was
disadvantageous to Earl Gilbert the Red. But this clearly isn't so.
If he had died without having issue by Joan of Acre, she would keep
the Clare inheritance until her death, but after that, the lands would
not revert to the crown, but instead go to Earl Gilbert the Red's
rightful heirs - his two daughters by Alice de Lusignan, or (if they
were deemed illegitimate due to the 1285 annulment of their parents'
marriage), his next eldest brother.
*C) In order for the 1290 entailment of the Clare lands to occur, Earl
Gilbert the Red had to surrender all of his lands to the king. Edward
I did not decide after the death of Earl Gilbert the Red to favor the
issue of Earl Gilbert's second marriage over the daughters of his
first one - Earl Gilbert was an agreeing participant.
B) THE 1317 CLARE INHERITANCE PARTITION
The Patent Roll entry of 13 May 1317 which RT quotes to illustrate the
entailment to Margaret de Clare, her second husband and their issue,
does not apply at all to Margaret's Clare inheritance. It applies to
lands Margaret had been granted in dower as countess of Cornwall.
Paul Reed has already posted the grant of 22 May 1317 that deals with
the Clare inheritance, and which in no way entails that inheritance.
The husbands of the three Clare sisters performed homage to the king
on behalf of their wives' inheritance and agreed to wait to take
seisin of the lands until the partition into thirds was completed by
the end of the year. The lands were NOT specifically granted to
Margaret and Hugh d'Audley and the heirs of their bodies (nor to the
other two sisters, their current husbands, and the heirs of their
That Edward II never intended to entail the Clare inheritance
specifically on the issue of the sisters and their current (1317)
husbands is made clear in a 1320 Fine (published in DEVON FEET OF
FINES). Hugh Despenser the Younger wanted to trade properties that
had originally been granted in Margaret's third of the inheritance for
some properties that had been given to him and his wife Eleanor in her
"At Westminster, 15 days from the day of St. John the Baptist, 14 Ed.
II (8 July 1320). Before William de Bereford, Gilbert de Roubiry,
John de Benstede, John Bacun, John de Mutford and John de Donecastre,
justices, and other, etc. Between Hugh de Audele junior & Margaret
his wife, claimants, and Hugh le Despenser junior & Alianora his wife,
deforciants; as to ... [snip of the list of properties being
exchanged]. Hugh le Despenser & Alianora granted to Hugh de Audele &
Margaret the said manors, wood, pasture & advowsons as is aforesaid &
gave them up to them at the Court. To have & to hold to Hugh de
Audele & Margaret & THE HEIRS OF MARGARET [emphasis mine] of the King
& his heirs by the services which to the said manors, wood, pasture,
fees & advowson, as is aforesaid, belong for ever in exchange for ...
[snip of the list of properties being exchanged] granted to the said
Hugh le Despenser & Alianora by the aforesaid Hugh de Audele &
Margaret, & delivered up to them at the Court. Moreover Hugh le
Despenser & Alianora undertook for themselves & THE HEIRS OF ALIANORA
[emphasis mine] that they would warrant the manors, wood, pasture,
fees & advowsons, as is aforesaid, in the said counties of Rutland,
Sussex, Kent, Middlesex, Surrey, Norfolk, London, Devon, Hertford &
Essex to the said Hugh de Audele & Margaret & THE HEIRS OF MARGARET
against all men for ever. THIS AGREEMENT WAS MADE BY PRECEPT OF THE
*A) The lands Margaret de Clare received in 1317 as her third of the
Clare inheritance were intended by Edward II to be inheritable by all
of her issue, including that of Piers Gaveston.
C) THE 1337 EARLDOM OF GLOUCESTER LIMITATION
Hugh d'Audley was created Earl of Gloucester (as opposed to, say, Earl
of Salisbury) because he did own, through his wife Margaret, a third
of the lands that had been associated with the previous Clare earls of
Gloucester. But the limitation that RT quotes in his article, using
Geoffrey Ellis as a source, does not apply to those lands. It
specifically only applied to the new title. Titles and lands had
separate rules of inheritance (that sometimes coincided, but not
always). Actually, the limitation allowed for Hugh d'Audley to pass
the title to a future son, should Margaret die before him, he remarry,
and father a male heir. In that scenario, Margaret's Clare
inheritance lands would pass to her sole daughter and heiress Margaret
d'Audley, Lady Stafford, while the earldom of Gloucester would
separately pass onto Hugh's son and heir who would hold none of the
original Clare lands. Margaret de Clare did predecease her husband,
but he never remarried and the title lapsed to the crown after his
*A) Any issue of Margaret and Piers alive in 1337 (in RT's argument,
Amie de Gaveston, who was very much alive then), would not be able to
inherit the earldom of Gloucester title, but would still be a legal
heir to Margaret's Clare inheritance.
*B) Since Margaret de Clare was 43 or so when her husband was created
earl, the limitation of the earldom was probably not to exclude any of
previous issue of hers (long since dead), but to allow for any
subsequent issue of his.
The Clare inheritance was never entailed in 1317, and had Amie de
Gaveston been the daughter of Margaret born in January 1312, she would
have legally been a coheiress (and senior one at that) to it through
her mother, since the death of Joan de Gaveston in 1325. RT's
explanation as to why there was no proceedings to disinherit Amie from
the Clare inheritance (she was cut out of it by the king) does not
hold true under the evidence.
Without any evidence of the disinheritance of Amie, the conclusion
must remain that she could not be the daughter born to Margaret de
Clare in January 1312.
More to follow.
|Amie de Gaveston Rebuttal - Part 1: Clare Inheritance by (Brad Verity)|