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Lucy of Bolingbroke, Countess of Chester

Female Abt 1070 - Abt 1138  (~ 68 years)


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  • Name Lucy of Bolingbroke, Countess of Chester 
    Suffix Countess of Chester 
    Born Abt 1070  Of, Spalding, Lincolnshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Female 
    _UID 688D212A6D774C69A80FE912A60E0C115CF9 
    Died Abt 1138 
    Notes 
    • From Wikipedia:

      Lucy (died c. 1138), sometimes called Lucy of Bolingbroke was an Anglo-Norman heiress in central England and, later in life, countess-consort of Chester. Probably descended partly from the old English earls of Mercia, she came to possess extensive lands in Lincolnshire which she passed on to her husbands and sons. She was a notable religious patron, founding or co-founding two small religious houses and endowing several with lands and churches.

      A charter of Crowland Abbey, now thought to be spurious, described Thorold of Bucknall, perhaps the same as her probable father Thorold of Lincoln, as a brother of Godgifu (Godiva), wife of Leofric, Earl of Mercia. The same charter contradicted itself on the matter, proceeding to style Godgifu's son (by Leofric), ¥lfgar, as Thorold's cognatus (cousin). Another later source, from Coventry Abbey, made Lucy the sister of Earls Edwin and Morcar Leofricsson, while two other unreliable sources, the Chronicle of Abbot Ingmund of Crowland and the Peterbrough Chronicle also make Lucy the daughter of Earl ¥lfgar. Keats-Rohan's explanation for these accounts is that they were ill-informed and were confusing Lucy with William Malet's mother.

      Although there is much confusion about Lucy's ancestry in earlier writings, contemporary historians tend to believe that she was the daughter of Thorold, sheriff of Lincoln, by a daughter of William Malet (died 1071). It appears to be accepted however that Lucy was descended from ¥lfgar, Earl of Mercia, even if the precise genealogy is not clear. This descent came either from Lucy's father or from William Malet's mother. She inherited an huge group of estates centred on Spalding in Lincolnshire, probably inherited from both the Lincoln and the Malet family. This group of estates have come to be called the "Honour of Bolingbroke".

      The heiress Lucy was married to three different husbands, all of whom died in her lifetime. The first of these was to Ivo Taillebois, a marriage which took place "around 1083". Ivo took over her lands as husband, and seems in addition to have been granted estates and extensive authority in Westmorland and Cumberland. Ivo died in 1094.

      The second marriage was to one Roger de Roumare or Roger fitz Gerold, with whom she had one son, William de Roumare (future Earl of Lincoln), who inherited some of her land. The latter was the ancestor of the de Roumare family of Westmorland. Roger died in either 1097 or 1098.

      Sometime after this, though before 1101, she was married to Ranulf le Meschin, her last and longest marriage. A son Ranulf de Gernon, succeeded his father to the earldom of Chester (which Ranulf acquired in 1121) and a daughter, Alice, married Richard de Clare.

      Upon her death, most of the Lincolnshire lands she inherited passed to her younger son William de Roumare, while the rest passed to Ranulf II of Chester (forty versus twenty knights' fees). The 1130 pipe roll informs us that Lucy had paid King Henry I 500 marks after her last husband's death for the right not to have to remarry. She died around 1138.

      Lucy, as widowed countess, founded the convent of Stixwould in 1135, becoming, in the words of one historian, "one of the few aristocratic women of the late eleventh and twelfth centuryes to achieve the role of independent lay founder". Her religious patronage however centered on Spalding Priory, a religious house for which her own family was the primary patron. This house (a monastic cell of Crowland) was founded, or re-founded, in 1085 by Lucy and her first husband Ivo Taillebois.

      Later, she was responsible for many endowments, for instance in the 1120's she and her third husband Earl Ranulf granted the priory the churches of Minting, Belchford and Scamblesby. In 1135, Lucy, now widowed for the last time, granted the priory her own manor of Spalding for the permanent use of the monks. The records indicate that Lucy went to great effort to ensure that, after her own death, her sons would honour and uphold her gifts.
    Person ID I1761  Ireland
    Last Modified 5 Mar 2012 

    Father Thorold, Sheriff of Lincoln,   b. Abt 1040, Of, Spalding, Lincolnshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Mother Miss Malet,   b. Abt 1044, Of, Alkborough, Lincolnshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Married Abt 1065  Of, , Lincolnshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F1286  Group Sheet

    Family 1 Ivo Taillebois,   d. 1094, , , England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married Abt 1083  Of, , Lincolnshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Last Modified 1 Feb 2012 
    Family ID F1284  Group Sheet

    Family 2 Roger Fitz Gerold, De Roumare,   d. 1097-1098, , , England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Last Modified 1 Feb 2012 
    Family ID F3325  Group Sheet

    Family 3 Ranulph "de Briquessart" Meschin, Earl of Chester,   b. Abt 1070, Of Briquessart, Livry, , France Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Jan 1128-1129, , Chester, Cheshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 59 years) 
    Married Abt 1097  Of, , , England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Alice De Meschines,   b. Abt 1094, Of, Hereford, Herefordshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1128  (Age ~ 34 years)
    +2. William De Meschines,   b. Abt 1096, Of Gernon Castle, , Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     3. Agnes Le Meschin,   b. Abt 1097, Of, Bayeux, Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
    +4. Ranulph "de Gernon" Chester, Viscount D'avra,   b. 1099, Gernon Castle, Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Dec 1153, , , , England Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 54 years)
    Last Modified 1 Feb 2012 
    Family ID F1220  Group Sheet

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - Abt 1070 - Of, Spalding, Lincolnshire, England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - Abt 1083 - Of, , Lincolnshire, England Link to Google Earth
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