22 May, 2015

Bartholomew Badlesmere (d. 1322) and Margaret de Clare (d. 1333)

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to write a post again this week owing to the intense pain and discomfort I'm having with my right eye; having suffered a corneal erosion a few weeks ago, the wound opened up again last week and became infected.  Which is every bit as horrible and revolting as it sounds.  It's slowly improving, thank goodness, and is less painful now, but will take a while yet to heal properly.  This is what I'd finished so far of a post about Bartholomew, Lord Badlesmere, who was given the traitor's death by Edward II in April 1322 after he joined the Contrariant rebellion against the king.  Badlesmere had been Edward's household steward, but switched sides, and Edward loathed him for it.  I'd written some of a post about his children, but that part will have to wait a while, I'm afraid!  So here's part one.

Bartholomew, Lord Badlesmere (c. 1275 - 14 April 1322) was a baron of Kent, the son and heir of Guncelin Badlesmere, and the maternal uncle of Henry Burghersh, bishop of Lincoln.  Sometime between about 1303 and 1308, Bartholomew married Margaret de Clare (1270s - 1333), niece of Gilbert 'the Red' de Clare, earl of Gloucester (1243-1295) and widow of Gilbert de Umfraville, earl of Angus.  Margaret was the first cousin of Edward II's niece the much more famous Margaret de Clare, daughter of Gilbert 'the Red' and countess of Cornwall and Gloucester, who married Piers Gaveston and Hugh Audley.  Margaret (de Clare) Badlesmere's younger sister Maud married Robert, Lord Clifford, who was killed at Bannockburn on 24 June 1314 along with their first cousin Gilbert de Clare, earl of Gloucester.  Margaret Badlesmere and Maud Clifford became heirs to their father Thomas de Clare, lord of Thomond (d. 1287), when their two brothers Gilbert and Richard and their young nephew Thomas died.  Bartholomew Badlesmere served in the retinue of his wife's first cousin the earl of Gloucester, and was said - whether accurately or not, I don't know - to have abandoned him to his death at the battle of Bannockburn on 24 June 1314.  A song written in Latin shortly after the battle accuses Badlesmere, condemned as "the traitorous man, Bartholomew" and "the representative of Judas," of deserting his lord Gloucester, and says "Because he refused to come to his master’s support, this traitor has deserved to be put to the rack."  (T. Wright, ed., The Political Songs of England (Camden Society, 1839), p. 263)

Bartholomew Badlesmere and Margaret de Clare had a son, Giles Badlesmere, and four daughters, Margery, Elizabeth, Maud and Margaret, two of whom married earls and one of whom was the grandmother of Richard II's notorious favourite Robert de Vere, earl of Oxford.  Bartholomew was high in Edward II’s favour: the king made him constable of Bristol Castle, gave him Leeds Castle in Kent, and in 1318 appointed him his household steward.  In 1321, Bartholomew changed sides and joined the Contrariant rebellion against the king.  A furious Edward sentenced him to the full traitor's death after the rebellion failed, and the king's good friend Donald, earl of Mar (Robert Bruce's nephew) captured Bartholomew at one of his nephew the bishop of Lincoln's manors and took him to Edward.  On 14 April 1322, Bartholomew was dragged three miles to the crossroads at Blean, hanged and then beheaded, and his head set on a spike over the gate into Canterbury; the only Contrariant in 1322 to suffer the full horrors of the traitor's death.  His widow Margaret was imprisoned for a few months in the Tower, released on 3 November 1322 and given two shillings a day by Edward II for her sustenance.  She died in 1333.

Bartholomew and Margaret's only son Giles Badlesmere was born either in 1313 or 1314 and thus was about eight years old when his father was executed; various dates of birth and ages for him are given in his father's belated Inquisition Post Mortem of 1328/29.  (Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem 1327-36, pp. 89-97).  Giles married Elizabeth Montacute or Montagu, daughter of William Montacute, earl of Salisbury (1301-1344) and Katherine Grandisson, but died childless on 7 June 1338, aged about twenty-four (CIPM 1336-46, p. 127).  William and Katherine Montacute only married in about 1327 and their son William, earl of Salisbury (d. 1397) was born in June 1328, so Elizabeth can hardly have been more than about nine years old when she was widowed from Giles.  She married secondly Hugh (Huchon), Lord Despenser, eldest son and heir of Hugh Despenser the Younger and Margaret Badlesmere's first cousin Eleanor de Clare, and thirdly Sr Guy Bryan.  She died between 30 May and 1 June 1359 (CIPM 1352-60, p. 414 on) and her tomb in Tewkesbury Abbey, Gloucestershire, next to her second husband Hugh, can still be seen.

Giles' four sisters were his joint heirs.  Judging by the evidence of his 1338 IPM, Margery was certainly the eldest daughter and Margaret the youngest, but it is not clear whether Maud or Elizabeth was the second eldest; jurors in some counties said that Maud was older than Elizabeth, others that Elizabeth was the elder.  Some of the Kent jurors badly messed up the names of the four women and the names of their husbands, which I find rather odd as the Badlesmeres' major landholdings lay in that county, so you'd think the jurors there might have had more reliable information (and they even got the first name of the earl of Oxford wrong - how careless!).  Margery certainly, and most probably both Maud and Elizabeth as well, were older than their brother Giles, and Margaret was younger than he.  Their estimated dates of birth below come from their ages given in Giles' IPM (CIPM 1336-46, p. 127 on).

More info about the four Badlesmere sisters coming when I can manage it!


Anonymous said...

It sounds as though you are going well and truly through the mill healthwise at present. I do hope it improves soon.

Thanks for the post about Edward's sometime steward et al and I will be interested to read part 2 when (hopefully) you are feeling better.

Patricia O

Kathryn Warner said...

Thank you for the kind words, Patricia! I went back to the eye clinic again today (am there at least every second day) and the doctor thought it was finally starting to heal and get a bit better. Fortunately the pain is much lessened.

Anerje said...

It sounds incredibly painful - so sorry for you. But even that can't stop you neglecting Edward:)

For a moment I thought it was Piers' wife. Badlesmere keeps turning up in the history pages of Edward's reign.

Kathryn Warner said...

Anerje, true, I really felt the need to update the blog despite everything :)

Sami Parkkonen said...

Take care of yourself now and we'll wait. There are plenty of fantastic postings here on your blog. We can wait.

Anonymous said...

Glad the pain has eased, but do be careful. As Sami noted, we can wait --- your eyes are more important.


Katarzyna Ogrodnik-Fujcik said...

It does sound terrible, Kathryn! Fingers crossed for your speedy recovery. I do understand the need of updating the blog despite everything, but your eyes are crucial in the process, so do take care of them in the first place :-) I am sure that Edward will understand.

Kathryn Warner said...

Thanks for the kind words, Sami, Esther and Kasia! It's sloooooowly getting better. I only have to go the doctor every two days now! :)

Sharon said...

I just found out about a week ago that my husband is a descendent of Bartholomew Badlesmere and Margaret de Clare. Thanks for this post and I will look around for more info on your blog.