Richard de Clare, 6th Earl of Hertford


Richard de Clare, 6th Earl of Hertford

Infobox Person
name = Richard de Clare, 6th Earl of Hertford and 2nd Earl of Gloucester


caption =
birth_date = 4 August 1222
dead=dead
birth_place =
death_date = death date|1262|7|15|mf=y
death_place = Waltham, Canterbury, England

Richard de Clare, 6th Earl of Hertford (August 4, 1222 – July 15, 1262) was son of Gilbert de Clare, 5th Earl of Hertford and Isabel Marshall, daughter of William Marshal, 1st Earl of Pembroke and Isabel de Clare, the 17-year-old daughter of Strongbow.

A year after he became of age, he was in an expedition against the Welsh. Through his mother he inherited a fifth part of the Marshall estates, including Kilkenny and other lordships in Ireland. In 1232 Richard was secretly married to Margaret (Megotta) de Burgh, daughter of Hubert de Burgh, 1st Earl of Kent and Margaret of Scotland. Both bride and groom were aged about ten. Megotta died in November 1237. Before she had even died, the earl of Lincoln offered 5,000 marks to King Henry to secure Richard for his own daughter. This offer was accepted, and Richard was married secondly, on or before 25 January 1238, to Maud de Lacy, daughter of the Surety John de Lacy and Margaret Quincy.

He joined in the Barons' letter to the Pope in 1246 against the exactions of the Curia in England. He was among those in opposition to the King's half-brothers, who in 1247 visited England, where they were very unpopular, but afterwards he was reconciled to them.

On April 1248, he had letters of protection for going over seas on a pilgrimage. At Christmas 1248, he kept his Court with great splendor on the Welsh border. In the next year he went on a pilgrimage to St. Edmund at Pontigny, returning in June. In 1252 he observed Easter at Tewkesbury, and then went across the seas to restore the honor of his brother William, who had been badly worsted in a tournament and had lost all his arms and horses. The Earl is said to have succeeded in recovering all, and to have returned home with great credit, and in September he was present at the "Round Table" tournament at Walden.

In August 1252/3 the King crossed over to Gascony with his army, and to his great indignation the Earl refused to accompany him and went to Ireland instead. In August 1255 he and John Maunsel were sent to Edinburgh by the King to find out the truth regarding reports which had reached the King that his son-in-law, Alexander, King of Scotland, was being coerced by Robert de Roos and John Baliol. If possible, they were to bring the young King and Queen to him. The Earl and his companion, pretending to be the two of Roos's knights, obtained entry to Edinburgh Castle, and gradually introduced their attendants, so that they had a force sufficient for their defense. They gained access to the Scottish Queen, who made her complaints to them that she and her husband had been kept apart. They threatened Roos with dire punishments, so that he promised to go to the King.

Meanwhile the Scottish magnates, indignant at their castle of Edinburgh's being in English hands, proposed to besiege it, but they desisted when they found they would be besieging their King and Queen. The King of Scotland apparently traveled South with the Earl, for on 24 September they were with King Henry III at Newminster, Northumberland. In July 1258 he fell ill, being poisoned with his brother William, as it was supposed, by his steward, Walter de Scotenay. He recovered but his brother died.

Richard died at John de Griol's manor of Asbenfield in Waltham, near Canterbury, 15 July 1262, it being rumored that he had been poisoned at the table of Piers of Savoy. On the following Monday he was carried to Canterbury where a mass for the dead was sung, after which his body was taken to the canon's church at Tonbridge and interred in the choir. Thence it was taken to Tewkesbury Abbey and buried 28 July 1262, with great solemnity in the presence of two bishops and eight abbots in the presbytery at his father's right hand. Richard's own arms were: Or, three chevronels gules.


His widow Maud, who had the manor of Clare and the manor and castle of Usk and other lands for her dower, erected a splendid tomb for her late husband at Tewkesbury. She arranged for the marriages of her children. She died before 10 March 1288.

ources

*Altschul, Michael. "A Baronial Family in Medieval England: The Clares, 1217-1314", 1965

ee Also

Holy Jesus Hospital


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