William de Forz, Count of Albemarle

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William de Forz, Count of Albemarle

Also Known As: "de Aumale", "Lord of Holderness"
Birthdate: (40)
Birthplace: France
Death: May 23, 1260 (36-44)
France
Immediate Family:

Son of William de Forz, comte d'Aumale, Surety of the Magna Carta and Avelina de Montfichet
Husband of Christiana FitzAlan of Galloway, Countess of Albermarle and Isabella de Fortibus, 8th Countess of Devon
Father of John de Forz; Thomas de Forz, Count of Aumale; William de Forz; Amice/Avice de Forz; Aveline de Forz, Countess of Aumale and Lancaster and 1 other
Brother of Aveline de Forz, Countess de Holderness and Hugh de Vivonne, Baron Chewton

Occupation: Count of Albemarle
Managed by: Shirley Marie Caulk
Last Updated:

About William de Forz, Count of Albemarle

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William de Forz, 4th Earl of Albemarle (died 1260) (Latinised as de Fortibus, sometimes spelt Deforce) played a conspicuous part in the reign of Henry III of England, notably in the Mad Parliament of 1258.

He married: 1.Christina (d. 1246), daughter and co-heiress of Alan, Lord of Galloway 2.in 1248 Isabella de Redvers (1237–1293), daughter of Baldwin de Redvers, Earl of Devon and Lord of the Isle of Wight.

His first wife was one of the co-heiresses of Galloway. Her mother was one of the co-heiresses of the Earldom of Chester on the death of the last Earl in 1237. He claimed that, as a Palatine, it could not be divided, and his wife should get it as the oldest coheir. He got the title, but the court decided that the lands should be divided, but this wife died in 1239 without issue. However, he and his wife quitclaimed the earldom to Henry III in 1241 in exchange for modest lands elsewhere.

In 1241, on the death of his father, he inherited his lands, including honors associated with Cockermouth Castle in Cumberland, and Skipton Castle in Craven, Skipsea Castle in Holderness, both in Yorkshire. He joined Henry III in campaigns in Poitou and Wales in 1242 and 1245, but not in Wales in 1257 because he was ill. He held local offices in Cumberland, including justice of the forest for Cumberland in 1251, and sheriff of Cumberland in 1255 and keeper of Carlisle Castle, an office he held until his death.

Following the death of his wife in 1246, he married another great heiress, the sister of the last Earl of Devon. William de Forz died at Amiens in 1260. His widow, Isabella, on the death of her brother Baldwin de Redvers, 8th Earl of Devon, in 1261, inherited his lands and called herself Countess of Devon and Aumale. She had six children, all of whom pre-deceased her, including Thomas, who died in 1269 unmarried, and Avelina, who married Edmund Crouchback, 1st Earl of Lancaster in 1269, and died without issue in 1274, aged 15.

Sources[edit] "Forz , William de, count of Aumale (b. before 1216, d. 1260". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/29480. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.) "Patrick Delaforce Family History Research Chapter 38". www.art-science.com. Retrieved 2008-03


From Medlands:

WILLIAM de Forz ([1214/15]-Amiens 23 May 1260, bur Meaux Abbey). Henry III King of England confirmed that "Willelmus de Fotz, comes Aubemarle" had transferred "Willelmum filium suum primogenitam" as a hostage in return for receiving "castrum nostrum de Salvat", dated 17 Dec 1216[1227]. The Cronicon Cumbriæ names “Hawysiam” as the child of “Willielmus Grossus comes Albemarliæ” and his wife, adding that he was succeeded by “Willielmus de Fortibus comes Albemarliæ”, in turn succeeded by “alter Willielmus de Fortibus”, and the latter by “Avelina” who married “Edmondo fratri domini Regis E” and died childless[1228]. "W filio comitis de Aubemarliæ" is named as son-in-law of Alan of Galloway by Matthew of Paris, who does not name his wife[1229]. Lord of Holderness. He succeeded as titular Comte d'Aumâle. "William de Fortibus, son of William de Fortibus late count of Aumale…and Christiana his wife" were granted "the manor of Driffield, co York and the manor of Tingden co Northampton", dated 5 Oct 1241[1230]. The Annales Londonienses record the death in 1260 of "comes Albemarliæ…in transmarinis partibus"[1231]. The Chronicle of Meaux, in Yorkshire, records the death "in civitate Ambianensi" in 1260 of "dominus Willelmus de Fortibus tertius ultimus comes Albermarliæ" and his burial "in presbyterio nostro juxta filiam suam"[1232]. A hearing "44 Hen III", after the death of "William de Fortibus alias de Ford, de Forz Earl of Albemarle" names "Thomas his son, aged 7 on the morrow of the Nativity of the Blessed May next, is his heir and as yet in the wardship of his mother"[1233]. m firstly (before Apr 1236) CHRISTIAN of Galloway, daughter of ALAN Lord of Galloway & his second wife Margaret of Scotland (-shortly before 29 Jul 1246). The Liber Pluscardensis records that the third daughter of "Alanus de Galway filius Rotholandi de Galway" married "comes Albemarliæ"[1234]. "William de Fortibus, son of William de Fortibus late count of Aumale…and Christiana his wife" were granted "the manor of Driffield, co York and the manor of Tingden co Northampton", dated 5 Oct 1241[1235]. Matthew of Paris records the death in 1246 of "comitissa quoque Albemarliæ filia Alani de Galeweia sororque comitisse Wintoniæ"[1236]. m secondly (1248) ISABEL de Reviers, daughter of BALDWIN de Reviers Earl of Devon & his wife Amice de Clare (Jul 1237-Stockwell, Surrey 10 Nov 1293, bur Breamore Priory, Hants). The Fundationis et Fundatorum Historia of Ford Abbey names “Baldwinum quintum postea comitum et Isabellam Albermarliæ” as the children of “Baldwinum quartum” & his wife, adding that Isabel succeeded after the death of her brother without children but also died childless[1237]. The Annals of Tewkesbury record the marriage in 1248 of “filia comitis Devoniæ” to “comiti de Aubemarle”[1238]. Writs dated 13 Jan and 13 Jul "47 Hen III", after the death of "Baldwin de Insula earl of Devon", names "Isabel de Fortibus countess of Albemarla, late the wife of the earl of Albemarle, his sister, age variously stated as 24 and more and 25, is his heir through the death of his son"[1239]. "Isabella de Fortibus comitissa de Albemarle et Devonie ac Domina Insule" confirmed donations to the abbey of Loders, Dorset, for the souls of "quondam bone memorie Willelmi de Fortibus comitis Albemalle viri nostri et pro animabus Thome et Willelmi de Fortibus filiorum predicti comitis", by charter dated to 1269, witnessed by "Dominis Johanne, filio Johannis…"[1240]. “Isabella de Fortibus comitissa de Albemarle et Devoniæ, ac domina Insulæ” donated property to Quarr Abbey, for the soul of “domini mei Willielmi de Fortibus comitis Albemarliæ”, by undated charter[1241].

William & his second wife had five children:

a) JOHN de Forz (-before 11 Aug 1260). The Complete Peerage cites a petition dated [1315], by Thomas de Multon and Anthony de Lucy, relating to the manors of Cockermouth and Skipton, which names "John, Thomas, William, Avice and Aveline" as the five children of William de Forz[1242].

b) THOMAS de Forz (9 Sep 1253-before 6 Apr 1269, bur Black Friars Church, Stamford, Lincs). A hearing "44 Hen III", after the death of "William de Fortibus alias de Ford, de Forz Earl of Albemarle" names "Thomas his son, aged 7 on the morrow of the Nativity of the Blessed May next, is his heir and as yet in the wardship of his mother"[1243]. "Isabella de Fortibus comitissa de Albemarle et Devonie ac Domina Insule" confirmed donations to the abbey of Loders, Dorset, for the souls of "quondam bone memorie Willelmi de Fortibus comitis Albemalle viri nostri et pro animabus Thome et Willelmi de Fortibus filiorum predicti comitis", by charter dated to 1269[1244]. The wording of this charter suggests ("filiorum predicti comitis" instead of "filiorum meorum") that the donor was not the mother of Thomas and William but the chronology of this family indicates that this was not the case. The drafting of the charter is ambiguous whether Thomas and William were deceased at the time or not. A writ dated 20 Feb "3 Edw I", after the death of "Avelina late the wife of Edmund the king’s brother" names "four daughters of Hugh de Bulebec and...Ralph de Pleys are next heirs", reciting the full ancestry which proves their heirship: “Richard de Munfichet died without heir...and his inheritance descended to his three sisters...the second sister Avelina married William de Forz Earl of Albemarle and from them issued William de Forz the last earl of Albemarle who had two sons Thomas and William who died without heirs...and one daughter Avelina whom Edmund the king’s brother took to wife...”[1245].

c) WILLIAM de Forz (-Oxford, bur Black Friars Church, Oxford). "Isabella de Fortibus comitissa de Albemarle et Devonie ac Domina Insule" confirmed donations to the abbey of Loders, Dorset, for the souls of "quondam bone memorie Willelmi de Fortibus comitis Albemalle viri nostri et pro animabus Thome et Willelmi de Fortibus filiorum predicti comitis", by charter dated to 1269[1246]. The wording of this charter suggests ("filiorum predicti comitis" instead of "filiorum meorum") that the donor was not the mother of Thomas and William but the chronology of this family indicates that this was not the case. The drafting of the charter is ambiguous whether Thomas and William were deceased at the time or not. A writ dated 20 Feb "3 Edw I", after the death of "Avelina late the wife of Edmund the king’s brother" names "four daughters of Hugh de Bulebec and...Ralph de Pleys are next heirs", reciting the full ancestry which proves their heirship: “Richard de Munfichet died without heir...and his inheritance descended to his three sisters...the second sister Avelina married William de Forz Earl of Albemarle and from them issued William de Forz the last earl of Albemarle who had two sons Thomas and William who died without heirs...and one daughter Avelina whom Edmund the king’s brother took to wife...”[1247].

d) AVICE de Forz (-[1260], bur [Meaux abbey]). The Complete Peerage cites a petition dated [1315], by Thomas de Multon and Anthony de Lucy, relating to the manors of Cockermouth and Skipton, which names "John, Thomas, William, Avice and Aveline" as the five children of William de Forz[1248]. The Chronicle of Meaux records that "Willielmum de Fortibus tertium" had "filias…quarum una" was buried "in presbyterio nostro", and "una earum Avelina" married "Edmundo filio regis Henrici tertii"[1249]. It is assumed that the former entry refers to Avice, although her name is not specified. Another passage in the same source records the death of her father and his burial "in presbyterio nostro juxta filiam suam"[1250], which suggests that the two died around the same time.

e) AVELINE de Forz (Burstwick, Yorks 20 Jan 1259-10 Nov 1274, bur Westminster Abbey). The Cronicon Cumbriæ names “Hawysiam” as the child of “Willielmus Grossus comes Albemarliæ” and his wife, adding that he was succeeded by “Willielmus de Fortibus comes Albemarliæ”, in turn succeeded by “alter Willielmus de Fortibus”, and the latter by “Avelina” who married “Edmondo fratri domini Regis E” and died childless[1251]. The Continuator of Florence of Worcester records the marriage "VI Id Apr" of "Eadmundus filius Henrici regis" and "filiam et hæredem comitis Aubemarliæ" at Westminster[1252]. An enquiry into the age of "Avelina the wife of Edmund the king’s brother, daughter and heir of William sometime earl of Albemarle" includes testimony that "Avelina was 14 on the day of SS Fabian and Sebastian last"[1253]. The Continuator of Florence of Worcester records the death in 1274 of "Avelina uxor domini Eadmundi regis filii comitissa Aubermarliæ"[1254]. The Chronicle of Thomas Wykes records the death “circa festum Sancti Martini” in 1274 of “uxor domini Edmundi fratris…regis nostri”[1255]. A writ dated 20 Feb "3 Edw I", after the death of "Avelina late the wife of Edmund the king’s brother" names "four daughters of Hugh de Bulebec and...Ralph de Pleys are next heirs", reciting the full ancestry which proves their heirship: “Richard de Munfichet died without heir...and his inheritance descended to his three sisters, the first sister Margery married Hugh de Bulebec and from them issued Hugh de Bulebec who had four daughters, Philippa married to Roger de Lancastre, Margery married to Nicholas Corbet, Alice married to Walter de Huntercumbe and Maud married to Hugh de la Valle; the second sister Avelina married William de Forz Earl of Albemarle and from them issued William de Forz the last earl of Albemarle who had two sons Thomas and William who died without heirs...and one daughter Avelina whom Edmund the king’s brother took to wife...; the third sister Philippa married Hugh de Pleys and from them issued Richard de Pleys from whom issued Ralph de Pleys now aged 9 and in the wardship of Robert Aguilun”[1256]. m (contract 6 Apr 1269, Westminster Abbey 8/9 Apr 1269) as his first wife, EDMUND “Crouchback/Gibbosus” of England Earl of Lancaster, son of HENRY III King of England & his wife Eléonore de Provence (London 16 Jan 1245-Bayonne 5 Jun 1296, bur Westminster Abbey).

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William de Forz, Count of Albemarle's Timeline

1220
1220
France
1250
1250
Age 30
Burstwick, Holderness, Yorkshire East Riding, England
1253
September 9, 1253
Age 33
Burstwick, Holderness, Yorkshire East Riding, England
1255
1255
Age 35
Burstwick, Holderness, Yorkshire East Riding, England
1257
1257
Age 37
Burstwick, Holderness, Yorkshire East Riding, England
1258
January 20, 1258
Age 38
Burstwick, Holderness, Yorkshire East Riding, England
1260
May 23, 1260
Age 40
France
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