Robert de Béthune (c.980 - 1037)

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Birthdate:
Birthplace: Bethune, Pas De Calais, Normandy, France
Death: Died in Artois, Pas-de-Calais, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France
Occupation: Avoué (protecteur) de Saint-Vaast d'Arras
Managed by: Bo Garsteen
Last Updated:

About Robert de Béthune

 	 	 Title: Notes

Text:

For centuries, Robert I Lord of Béthune was a "deadend" and had no ancestral connections. I have linked him to the following family because of the following reasons:

1. He was the direct descendant of Eberhard (Edward), Margrave of Friuli; Count of Artois, who in 870 AD married Grisele, sister of Charles "the Bald".

2. The Counts of Artois and Flanders were the "same family." And noted throughout all genealogies of the Béthune family that Robert I was a direct descendant of Counts of Artois and this Flemish family. Looking at all the Counts of Artois and their descendants, Arnulph II, Count of Flanders and Count of Artois is the only natural choice for his father.

3. The ancient naming pattern of the time point to family with a history of these unique first names, as well as a continuation of the hereditary titles.

4. The title and honor of "Advoué d'Arras" was normally given to prince's and because of the relationship of "mother" Rosele de Lombardy, Queen of France and his "step-father" Robert II, King of France at the time this honor was given, Robert I would have been the natural candidate. Note: It is strongly believed Robert I, Lord of Béthune was named after the then prince of France, Robert II.

Was chosen "Defender or Protector of the Church." This was deemed a very great honor, only conferred on powerful princes; for it involved the duty of defending and protecting the church property and the interest of the Church generally.

Advoué d'Arras, as it is written in the old French histories, enjoyed the high honor of having the banner of the church borne before him in all warlike expeditions. Hence Robert 1st of Béthune is called "Faisscus" to indicate that he enjoyed this distinction, and the band or "fasse" in the shield of the Béthune arms was to commemorate the conferring of this honor on him and his posterity.

In return for the services of the Barons of Béthune rendered the church, the church has preserved, in its archives, a minute and reliable history of the family; so that we have before us an uninterrupted genealogy from father to son from 1011 to the present day, together with all the births, deaths, and marriages, and an account of everything worthy of note connected with their history.

1st Lord of Béthune

Mentioned: 996 and 1024

The family name of Béthune is taken from the city of that name in the ancient Province of Picardie, France (now known as Pas-de-Calais Province). It was called by the Romans "Betunia in Gaul." It was the chief city of a barony belonging to a family descending from the Counts of Artois. Since the eleventh century they have been known in history as the Béthunes of Picardie; prior to that date family [surnames] were unknown.

The name Béthune is traceable to Robert, surnamed Faisseus. He was Lord Baron of the town of Béthune, in the ancient Province of Picardie, France, in the year 1000 AD, he has many descendants including Cardinal Beaton in Scotland, Duc de Sully in France and a number of princes of Hainault in Flanders.

According to Duc De Sully also called MARQUIS DE ROSNY, Maximilian de Béthune b. 13 December 1560, Mantes France. d. Dec. 22, 1641, Villebon, The son of François de Béthune, Baron de Rosny, he was brought up as a Huguenot and was sent at an early age to the court of Henry of Navarre (later Henry IV of France) Prime minister of France under the reign of King Henry IV of France. He said that the name Bethune "derives its origin, by the house of Coucy, from the ancient house of Austria: we must not, however, confound it with that which is at present in possession of the possession of the empire of Germany, and the two Spain's. This last is descended only from the Counts of Hapsburg and Quiburg, private gentlemen, who, three hundred years since, were in the pay of the cities of Strasburg, Basil, and Zurich, and who would have thought themselves highly honored by being stewards of the household to such a prince as the King of France..." (Memoirs of Sully, Book 1. 1570, pp. 60,61)

He goes on to say "The house of Béthune (which has given its name to the city of Flanders, and from whence issued the counts who anciently governed that province) boasts of one Robert de Béthune, protector of the church of Arras, whose father and grandfather, bearing also the name of Robert, were declared protectors of the province of Artois."

The name Bethune first appears in Scotland about the end of the twelfth century when Robert de Betunia appears in a De Quincy charter. The name got confused with the name Beaton, which is of Gaelic origin, from Macbeth of the Macbeths who practiced medicine in the Western Isles in the sixteenth centuries, their names became Anglicized as Benten. They practiced in Islay and Mull.

Upon the marriage of James II of Scotland and Mary of Gueldres in 1448, a member of Bethune, Robert de Bethune was solicited by James to remain at the Scottish court. He married the heiress of the house of Balfour, Janet de Balfour. On the death of her brother John de Balfour, Robert de Bethunes son John de Bethune inherited the title and lands of Balfour, and became the first Laird Bethune of Balfour. They later were known as Beaton of Balfour

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Robert I "Faisseux", seigneur de Béthune's Timeline

980
980
Bethune, Pas De Calais, Normandy, France
1002
1002
Age 22
Béthune, Pas-de-Calais, France
1013
1013
Age 33
Béthune, Pas-de-Calais, France
1015
1015
Age 35
Béthune, Pas-de-Calais, France
1037
1037
Age 57
Artois, Pas-de-Calais, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France
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