William d'Aubigny, 1st Earl of Arundel

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William d'Aubigny
Earl of Lincoln
Earl of Arundel
Died12 Oct 1176
Buried Wymondham Abbey
Spouse(s) Queen Adeliza
William d'Aubigny, 2nd Earl of Arundel
Reynor d'Aubigny
Henry d'Aubigny
Geoffrey d'Aubigny
Alice d'Aubigny
Olivia d'Aubigny
Agatha d'Aubigny
Father William d'Aubigny
MotherMaud Bigod
OccupationMaster butler of the Royal household

William d'Aubigny (c. 1109 12 October 1176[ citation needed ]), also known as William d'Albini, William de Albini and William de Albini II, [1] was an English nobleman. He was son of William d'Aubigny "Pincerna" [lower-alpha 1] and Maud Bigod, daughter of Roger Bigod of Norfolk.


William fought loyally for King Stephen of England, who created him first Earl of Arundel (more precisely, Earl of Sussex) (c. 1138 [2] ) and then Earl of Lincoln. In 1153 he helped arrange the truce between Stephen and Henry Plantagenet, known as the Treaty of Wallingford, which brought an end to The Anarchy. His first known appearance as "earl" was at Christmas 1141. [3] When Henry Plantagenet ascended the throne as Henry II, he confirmed William's earldom and gave him direct possession of Arundel Castle (instead of the possession in right of his wife (died 1151) he had previously had). He remained loyal to the king during the 1173 revolt of Henry the Young King, and helped defeat the rebellion.

In 1143, as Earl of Lincoln, he made two charters confirming a donation of land around Arundel in Sussex to the abbey of Affligem in Brabant, with William's brother, Olivier, present.

He was the builder of Castle Rising Castle at Castle Rising, Norfolk.

William is the first proven English supporter of the crusader Order of St. Lazarus of Jerusalem and before 1146 had granted them land at Wymondham and built a Leper Hospital near his castle in Norfolk. [4] His wife, Adeliza, was also a major benefactor to leper hospitals at Wilton, Wiltshire and Arundel [4] and his cousin, Roger de Mowbray and his family, were to become the most significant patrons of the Order's headquarters at Burton Lazars Hospital. [5] [6]


William was an important member of Henry I of England's household. After Henry's death, William married Queen Adeliza of Louvain in 1138. William and Adeliza were parents to the following children:


  1. The nickname or title "Pincerna", used for both Williams, referred to the master butler of the Royal household.

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William d'Aubigny, sometimes William de Albini, was an Anglo-Norman baron and administrator who served successive kings of England and acquired large estates in Norfolk. From his title of Butler to King Henry I of England, he was called William d'Aubigny Pincerna to distinguish him from other men of the same name.


  1. Brown, p.9.
  2. The Peerage.com
  3. Round, John Horace (1911). "Arundel, Earldom of"  . In Chisholm, Hugh (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica . 2 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 705–706.
  4. 1 2 David Marcombe, David Marcombe (2003). Leper Knights . Woodbridge: Boydell Press. p.  34. ISBN   1-84383-067-1.
  5. Nichols, John (1795). The History and Antiquities of the County of Leicester. Leicester: John Nichols.
  6. Bourne, Terry; Marcombe, David, eds. (1987). The Burton Lazars Cartulary: A Medieval Leicestershire Estate. Nottingham: University of Nottingham.


Peerage of England
New creation Earl of Lincoln
Succeeded by
William de Roumare
Earl of Arundel
c. 1143 1176
Succeeded by
William d'Aubigny