Thomas de Berkeley, 1st Baron Berkeley

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Arms of Berkeley: Gules, a chevron between ten crosses pattée six in chief and four in base argent

Thomas de Berkeley, 1st Baron Berkeley (c. 1245– 23 July 1321) [1] , The Wise, [2] feudal baron of Berkeley, of Berkeley Castle in Gloucestershire, England, was a peer, soldier and diplomat. [3] His epithet, and that of each previous and subsequent head of his family, was coined by John Smyth of Nibley (d.1641), steward of the Berkeley estates, the biographer of the family and author of "Lives of the Berkeleys".

English feudal barony Medieval English noble title and type of land tenure

In the kingdom of England, a feudal barony or barony by tenure was the highest degree of feudal land tenure, namely per baroniam, under which the land-holder owed the service of being one of the king's barons. The duties owed by and the privileges granted to feudal barons cannot now be defined exactly, but they involved the duty of providing soldiers to the royal feudal army on demand by the king, and the privilege of attendance at the king's feudal court, the precursor of parliament.

Berkeley Castle castle in the town of Berkeley, Gloucestershire, UK

Berkeley Castle is a castle in the town of Berkeley, Gloucestershire, UK. The castle's origins date back to the 11th century, and it has been designated by English Heritage as a grade I listed building.

The Peerage of the United Kingdom comprises most peerages created in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland after the Acts of Union in 1801, when it replaced the Peerage of Great Britain. New peers continued to be created in the Peerage of Ireland until 1898.

Contents

Origins

Thomas de Berkeley was born around 1245 [4] at Berkeley Castle in Gloucestershire, the son of Sir Maurice de Berkeley, feudal baron of Berkeley, by his wife Isabel FitzRoy, [5] a paternal granddaughter of King John (1199-1216) through his bastard son Richard FitzRoy.

Gloucestershire County of England

Gloucestershire is a county in South West England. The county comprises part of the Cotswold Hills, part of the flat fertile valley of the River Severn, and the entire Forest of Dean.

Sir Maurice de Berkeley "the Resolute", 5th (feudal) Baron de Berkeley, was an English soldier and rebel, residing at Berkeley Castle in the English county of Gloucestershire.

John, King of England 13th-century King of England and grantor of Magna Carta

John was King of England from 1199 until his death in 1216. He lost the Duchy of Normandy and most of his other French lands to King Philip II of France, resulting in the collapse of the Angevin Empire and contributing to the subsequent growth in power of the French Capetian dynasty during the 13th century. The baronial revolt at the end of John's reign led to the sealing of Magna Carta, a document sometimes considered an early step in the evolution of the constitution of the United Kingdom.

Career

He fought in the Battle of Evesham in 1265. [5] He inherited the feudal baron of Berkeley in 1281 following the death of his father and on 28 June 1283 was created 1st Baron Berkeley by writ of summons to Parliament by King Edward I (1272-1307). In June 1292 he was a commissioner to examine the claims to the crown of Scotland. [5] He was on an embassy to France in January 1296 and held the office of Vice-Constable of England in 1297. [5] He fought in the Battle of Falkirk on 22 July 1298 and was present at the Siege of Caerlaverock, Scotland, in July 1300. [5] He was on an embassy to Pope Clement V in July 1307. [5] He fought in the Battle of Bannockburn on 24 June 1314, where he was taken prisoner, and obliged to pay a large sum for his ransom. [5]

The Battle of Evesham was one of the two main battles of 13th century England's Second Barons' War. It marked the defeat of Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester, and the rebellious barons by the future King Edward I, who led the forces of his father, King Henry III. It took place on 4 August 1265, near the town of Evesham, Worcestershire.

Baron Berkeley title in the Peerage of England

The title Baron Berkeley originated as a feudal title and was subsequently created twice in the Peerage of England by writ. It was first granted by writ to Thomas de Berkeley, 1st Baron Berkeley (1245–1321), 6th feudal Baron Berkeley, in 1295, but the title of that creation became extinct at the death of his great-great-grandson, the fifth Baron by writ, when no male heirs to the barony by writ remained, although the feudal barony continued. The next creation by writ was in 1421, for the last baron's nephew and heir James Berkeley. His son and successor William was created Viscount Berkeley in 1481, Earl of Nottingham in 1483, and Marquess of Berkeley in 1488. He had no surviving male issue, so the Marquessate and his other non-inherited titles became extinct on his death in 1491, whilst the barony passed de jure to his younger brother Maurice. However William had disinherited Maurice because he considered him to have brought shame on the noble House of Berkeley by marrying beneath his status to Isabel, daughter of Philip Mead of Wraxhall, an Alderman and Mayor of Bristol. Instead he bequeathed the castle, lands and lordships comprising the Barony of Berkeley to King Henry VII and his heirs male, failing which to descend to William's own rightful heirs. Thus on the death of King Edward VI in 1553, Henry VII's unmarried grandson, the Berkeley inheritance returned to the family. Therefore, Maurice and his descendants from 1492 to 1553 were de jure barons only, until the return of the title to the senior heir Henry, becoming de facto 7th Baron in 1553. Upon his death he was succeeded by his relative George Harding.

In common law, a writ is a formal written order issued by a body with administrative or judicial jurisdiction; in modern usage, this body is generally a court. Warrants, prerogative writs, and subpoenas are common types of writ, but many forms exist and have existed.

Marriage and descendants

In 1267 Thomas de Berkeley married Joan de Ferrers, a daughter of William de Ferrers, 5th Earl of Derby, by his wife Margaret de Quincy, [5] a daughter of Roger de Quincy, 2nd Earl of Winchester. By his wife he had the following children:

William de Ferrers, 5th Earl of Derby English Earl

William III de Ferrers, 5th Earl of Derby, was an English nobleman and major landowner, unable through illness to take much part in national affairs. From his two marriages, he left numerous children who married into noble and royal families of England, France, Scotland and Wales.

Roger de Quincy, 2nd Earl of Winchester English Earl

Roger de Quincy, 2nd Earl of Winchester ,) hereditary Constable of Scotland, was a nobleman of Anglo-Norman and Scottish descent who was prominent in both England and Scotland, at his death having one of the largest baronial landholdings in the two kingdoms.

Maurice de Berkeley, 2nd Baron Berkeley English noble and rebel

Maurice de Berkeley, 2nd Baron Berkeley, The Magnanimous, feudal baron of Berkeley, of Berkeley Castle in Gloucestershire, England, was a peer. He rebelled against King Edward II and the Despencers. His epithet, and that of each previous and subsequent head of his family, was coined by John Smyth of Nibley, steward of the Berkeley estates, the biographer of the family and author of Lives of the Berkeleys.

Coston is a village in the eastern part of Leicestershire, England. The population is included in the civil parish of Sproxton

Wymondham, Leicestershire village in Melton, Leicestershire, England

Wymondham is a village in the Borough of Melton in Leicestershire, England. It is part of a civil parish which also covers the nearby hamlet of Edmondthorpe. The parish has a population of 623, increasing to 632 at the 2011 census. It is close to the county borders with Lincolnshire and Rutland, nearby places being Garthorpe, Teigh and South Witham.

Death & succession

He died at Berkeley Castle on 23 July 1321 and was succeeded in his titles by his eldest son Maurice de Berkeley, 2nd Baron Berkeley. [5]

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Thomas de Berkeley may refer to:

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References

  1. Smyth, John (1883). The Berkeley manuscripts. The lives of the Berkeleys, lords of the honour, castle and manor of Berkeley, in the county of Gloucester, from 1066 to 1618;. Robarts - University of Toronto. Gloucester, Printed by J. Bellows.
  2. Cokayne
  3. Smyth, John (1883). The Berkeley manuscripts. The lives of the Berkeleys, lords of the honour, castle and manor of Berkeley, in the county of Gloucester, from 1066 to 1618; p. 154. Robarts - University of Toronto. Gloucester, Printed by J. Bellows.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 G. E. Cokayne; with Vicary Gibbs, H.A. Doubleday, Geoffrey H. White, Duncan Warrand and Lord Howard de Walden, editors, The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, Extant, Extinct or Dormant, new ed., 13 volumes in 14 (1910-1959; reprint in 6 volumes, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 2000), volume II, pages 127 & 128
  5. John Burke & John Bernard Burke (1844), Extinct and Dormant Baronetcies of England, Ireland and Scotland (hardback), London: John Russell Smith
  6. Smyth's Lives of the Berkeleys cited in Chitty, Henry; Phillipot, John (1885), The Visitation of the County of Gloucestershire taken in the year 1623, London: The Harleian Society, p. 206, retrieved 13 March 2017
Peerage of England
Preceded by
new creation
Baron Berkeley
1295–1321
Succeeded by
Maurice de Berkeley