29 November, 2014

29 November 1314: Death of Philip IV of France

29 November 2014 marks the 700th anniversary of the death of Edward II's father-in-law (and second cousin) King Philip IV of France.  Philip was forty-six when he died, and had been king for twenty-nine years since the death of his father Philip III on 5 October 1285.

Philip was born sometime in 1268 as the second son of Philip of France and Isabel of Aragon.  He was born in the reign of his grandfather Louis IX, who died on 25 August 1270, at which point Philip's father acceded as Philip III, and also during the reign of his maternal grandfather, the Spanish king Jaime I of Aragon, who died in July 1276.  Philip IV was the great-grandson of King Andras II of Hungary, and the great-great-great-great-great-great-grandson of Harold Godwinson, the king of England killed at Hastings in 1066, via Harold's daughter Gytha of Wessex and her husband Vladimir Monomakh of Kiev.  Philip's uncle on his mother's side was Pedro III of Aragon and he was the first cousin of Alfonso III and Jaime II of Aragon, and his aunt Violante married Edward II's uncle Alfonso X of Castile and was the mother of Sancho IV, who was both Philip's first cousin and Edward II's.  Philip and Edward themselves were second cousins: their paternal grandmothers were sisters, Marguerite and Eleanor of Provence, queens of France and England.

Philip had two younger brothers: Robert, born in 1269, who died as a child, and Charles of Valois, born in March 1270, father of the Valois dynasty which ruled France from 1328 to 1589.  Their mother Isabel of Aragon was pregnant with her fifth child when she died in January 1271 following a fall from her horse, just five months after she became queen of France on the death of her father-in-law Louis IX.  The poor woman must have been perpetually pregnant: Philip in 1268, Robert in 1269, Charles in March 1270, and pregnant again in January 1271.  Queen Isabel's widower Philip III married his second wife Marie of Brabant in 1274, and she was the mother of Philip IV's half-siblings Louis, count of Evreux (b. 1276); Edward II's stepmother Marguerite, queen of England (b. 1278/79); and Blanche, duchess of Austria (b. early 1280s?).

Philip IV had an older brother Louis, born in about 1264.  This was something Philip had in common with his father Philip III, who was the second son of Louis IX and Marguerite of Provence and became the king's heir when his elder brother Louis died in early 1260 when he was fifteen or sixteen.  Louis the younger, eldest son of Philip III and Isabel of Aragon, died in 1276, aged about twelve; suspicions were raised that he was poisoned by his stepmother Marie of Brabant, whose son Louis (yet another Louis!) of Evreux was born that year.*  This seems highly unlikely given that there were two other surviving brothers of Philip III's first marriage, Philip IV and Charles of Valois.

* I know this is really confusing, so just to clarify: both Philip III and Philip IV had elder brothers called Louis, heirs to the throne of their fathers, who both died before they became king.  Philip III had two sons called Louis, one who died in 1276 and one who was born that year (and died in 1319).

The future Philip IV, aged sixteen or almost, married Queen Joan I of Navarre on 16 August 1284, three days before the death of Edward I and Eleanor of Castile's third son Alfonso of Bayonne, and they became king and queen of France the following year.  They had seven children together, though only four survived childhood and only the date of birth of the eldest son is known: Louis X, born on 4 October 1289.  Their other sons who survived childhood were Philip V, born in the early 1290s, and Charles IV, born in about 1293/94.  Their only surviving daughter was Isabella, Edward II's queen, probably born in 1295.  Philip IV and Joan I's three sons fathered at least eight daughters between them, but all their sons died young, and so the French throne passed in 1328 to Philip of Valois, son of Philip IV's brother Charles of Valois.  Philip IV's only surviving grandson, Edward III (not counting Edward's younger brother John of Eltham, who died in 1336), claimed the throne of France.  Not quite what Philip had had in mind when he arranged the marriage of his daughter to Edward II.

Philip updated his will at Fontainebleau on 28 November 1314, the day before he died (Seymour Phillips, Edward II, p. 223).  He left Isabella, carissime filie nostre regine Angliae, 'our beloved daughter the queen of England', two rings, one set with a ruby called 'the cherry' which she had previously given to him; she had not been bequeathed anything in his previous will of May 1311.  Isabella was elsewhere named in the will as carissima Ysabella regina Angliae carissima filia nostra, 'beloved Isabella, queen of England, our beloved daughter'.  Edward II had heard of his father-in-law's death by 15 December, on which day he ordered the archbishops of Canterbury and York, all the bishops and twenty-eight abbots to "celebrate exequies" for him.  (Close Rolls 1313-18, p. 204.)  Philip was only forty-six, and had three sons aged between twenty and twenty-five; neither he nor anyone else could have predicted that in less than fourteen years, all his sons would be dead with no male heirs and that the great Capetian dynasty would come to an end.

25 November, 2014

25 November: Feast Day of Saint Katherine

Today is my name-day, the feast of Saint Katherine/Catherine/Kathryn of Alexandria, martyred by being broken on a wheel in c. 305.  In 1325, Edward II ordered his almoner John Denton to give five pounds' worth of food to the poor to mark the saint's day.  He also gave ten shillings to a woman called Anneis for 'what she did at the gate of the Tower of London' on this day to honour St Katherine, though what Anneis did is not specified.  The following year, 1326, the feast of St Katherine must have been a terrible day for Edward II: he was in captivity and his beloved Hugh Despenser the Younger had been grotesquely executed the day before.

Katherine was the name of one of Edward II's numerous short-lived older sisters, born in c. 1261/63 and died in 1264, and the name of his aunt, Henry III and Eleanor of Provence's youngest child, who was born on the feast day of Saint Katherine in 1253 and died at the age of three and a half (Edward I and Eleanor of Castile presumably named their daughter after this sister of Edward).  Katherine doesn't seem to have been a terribly common name in England during Edward II's reign.  Hugh Despenser the Younger had a chamberlain named Clement Holditch, whose wife was called Katherine; on 31 October 1325, Katherine Holditch went to ask for Edward II's help regarding 'some great business she had to do'.  Hugh the Younger and Eleanor de Clare's youngest daughter Elizabeth and her husband Maurice, Lord Berkeley named their first daughter Katherine, probably in honour of Maurice's stepmother Katherine Cliveden.  There was a 'hospital of St Katherine by the Tower of London', founded in c. 1148 by King Stephen's wife Queen Matilda, and in June 1318, Edward appointed his clerk Richard de Lusteshull custodian of it for life.  More info here.

The Anneis mentioned above celebrating the feast day of St Katherine in 1325 was married to Roger de May, one of Edward II's chamber valets or grooms.  Most unusually - all great households of the Middle Ages consisted almost exclusively of men - Edward hired Anneis herself as one of his (more than thirty) chamber valets on 5 December 1325 at wages of three pence a day, the same as her husband and the other valets received.  Joan Traghs, wife of the chamber valet Robin Traghs, was herself also hired as a valet on 8 March 1326, and received her wages of three pence a day for forty-four days while she was away from court, ill.  Both Anneis de May and Joan Traghs, and their husbands, were among the chamber staff who remained loyal to Edward II until the very end, and were named in the last entries of his chamber account of 31 October 1326, when it ceased to be kept.

19 November, 2014

Alice de Lacy, Countess of Lincoln, and IPMs

I was recently looking at the Inquisition Post Mortem of Henry de Lacy, earl of Lincoln, who died on 5 February 1311 at the age of sixty.  At the time of his death, Henry was acting as regent of England during Edward II's long and unsuccessful 1310/11 campaign against Robert Bruce in Scotland, and Edward sent his nephew Gilbert de Clare, earl of Gloucester, back to England to act as his regent instead - a heavy responsibility for a man who was not yet twenty.  Henry de Lacy had been a close ally of Edward I, and tried his best to show the same loyalty to Edward II, but Edward's antics re: Piers Gaveston early on in his reign aggravated Henry beyond endurance, and he was a leading member of the opposition to the king and the earl of Cornwall.  He did later come back to the king's side, however.

Henry was the son of Edmund de Lacy, earl of Lincoln, who died in 1258 when Henry was still a child, and Alesia de Saluzzo, daughter of Manfred del Vasto, marquis of Saluzzo.  Alesia's sister Agnese married the English baron John, Lord Vescy (who married secondly Isabella Beaumont), and their niece Alesia married Richard Fitzalan, earl of Arundel and was the mother of Edmund, earl of Arundel: a spate of England-Saluzzo marriages in the thirteenth century, and one which ensured that two of the English earls of Edward II's reign, Henry de Lacy and Edmund Fitzalan, were half-Italian.

In 1311, Henry left as his heir his sole surviving legitimate child, Alice, his son Edmund having died in a childhood accident (another son, John, appears to have been illegitimate and Alice's half-brother, and later became one of her clerks, as Elizabeth Ashworth has discovered).  Henry was also survived by his much younger second wife Joan Martin, with whom he had no children.  Joan's date of birth is unknown but her brother William was probably born in 1294, and her second husband Nicholas Audley was born on 11 November 1292.  Henry de Lacy, by way of comparison, was born at the beginning of the 1250s so must have been forty years Joan's senior.  Alice de Lacy and her stepmother Joan Martin were ordered to be brought to Edward II on 22 March 1322, the day of Alice's husband Thomas of Lancaster's execution; Joan, who was probably no more than thirty at the time, is almost inevitably described with great pathos in modern books as Alice's 'elderly mother' by writers who haven't done their research properly.

Alice's mother was in fact Margaret Longespee, who died sometime after 22 August 1306 and before 16 June 1310, when her widower Henry de Lacy was already married to Joan Martin.  Born in about 1254, Margaret was countess of Salisbury in her own right: she was the great-granddaughter and heir of William Longespee (Longsword), earl of Salisbury, an illegitimate son of Henry II.  Her father and grandfather were also named William Longespee, earl of Salisbury.  Her grandfather William, grandson of Henry II, was killed at the battle of Mansourah in Egypt in 1250 during Louis IX's disastrous crusade, and her father William died at the end of 1256 or beginning of 1257, when she was only two years old.  Margaret Longespee's mother Maud Clifford, Alice de Lacy's maternal grandmother, was a granddaughter of Llywelyn ap Iorwerth, prince of Gwynedd, via Llywelyn's daughter Marared.  After the death of her first husband William Longespee the third (d. 1256/57), Maud Clifford was abducted and forcibly married to John, Lord Giffard of Brimpsfield, Gloucestershire.  Maud's younger daughter from this forced marriage, Catherine Giffard, was the mother of Nicholas Audley, who married Henry de Lacy's widow Joan Martin, as above.  This means that the child of Margaret Longespee's half-sister married the widow of Margaret's widower.  Ummmm.

Moving rapidly on, Alice de Lacy married Thomas of Lancaster, Edward I's nephew, in or shortly before the autumn of 1294, when she was twelve going on thirteen and he probably sixteen: Henry de Lacy's Inquisition Post Mortem says that in February/March 1311 Thomas was aged '32 and more' and 33, which would put his date of birth in 1277/78 - this fits well with the date of his parents' (Edmund of Lancaster and Blanche of Artois) wedding in early 1276.  Marriage to Alice was an extremely advantageous match for Thomas, who would one day add Alice's earldoms of Lincoln and Salisbury to the three, Lancaster, Leicester and Derby, he would inherit from his father Edmund.  Edward I had in 1292 (Foedera 1272-1307, p. 738) arranged a marriage for Thomas with Beatrice, daughter of Hugh, viscount of Avallon, son of Duke Hugh IV of Burgundy (d. 1272), but this marriage did not go ahead, I think because Beatrice died.

Edward II sent out a writ to his two escheators on 6 February 1311 at Berwick-on-Tweed, the day after Henry de Lacy's death - obviously the news reached him very swiftly - ordering them to take Henry's lands into his own hands*, and as usual inquisitions were taken in all the counties where Henry had held lands, to determine the extent of the lands and how he had held them (i.e. of the king in chief or from someone else), and the identity of his heir and her approximate age.  Between 20 February and 11 March 1311, inquisitions were held in Lincolnshire, Staffordshire, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Buckinghamshire, Middlesex, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Yorkshire, Berkshire, Northamptonshire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire, Somerset, Dorset, Herefordshire, Lancashire, Cheshire and Denbigh.  The jurors in all these counties correctly named Alice as Henry's heir, some also identified her as the wife of Thomas of Lancaster, and most had a stab at guessing her age.  The guesses varied between 24 and 32, and hit just about every age in between.  Not terribly helpful.  However, the jurors of Denbigh, the de Lacys' great North Wales lordship, had better information.  Alice almost certainly was born in the castle there, and the Denbigh jurors were the only ones not to guess her age but to give it precisely.  On 21 February 1311, they declared that Alice was 'aged 29 on Christmas Day last', i.e. 1310, and thus was probably born on 25 December 1281 (or perhaps shortly before).

[* Calendar of Fine Rolls 1307-1319, p. 81; Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem 1307-1327, pp. 153-164.]

Inquisitions Post Mortem are a fantastic resource, but in a world still half a millennium away from inventing birth certificates, the information they provide about people's ages should often be taken with a pinch of salt, as the information can vary considerably.  For example, Margaret Audley, only child and heir of Edward II's niece Margaret de Clare and Hugh Audley, earl of Gloucester, must have been born sometime between early 1318 and late 1322.  In her mother's IPM taken from April to August 1342, Margaret was variously said to be 18 and 20 and thus born in 1322 or 1324 (impossible as her father had been imprisoned since March 1322), and in her father's, taken in November/December 1347, she was said to be either 24, 26 or 30, so born in 1323, 1321 or 1317 (her parents married on 28 April 1317).  I also saw one recently, can't recall quite who it was now, where a tenant in-chief's son and heir was said to be either nine or fifteen.  Theobald de Verdon, who abducted Edward II's widowed niece Elizabeth de Clare in 1316, was said in his father's IPM of 1309 to be anywhere between 22 and 30, but the Shropshire jurors give his date of birth precisely: aged 31 at the feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Mary last, so he was born on 8 September 1278 (or soon before).  Aymer de Valence, earl of Pembroke, was said in his mother Joan's IPM of September/October 1307 to be anywhere between 24 and 37, which would put his year of birth between 1270 and 1283.  Ummmm, helpful.

14 November, 2014

The Children of Edmund of Woodstock and Margaret Wake, and Joan of Kent's Date of Birth

Edmund of Woodstock was born on 5 August 1301 as the youngest son of Edward I, then aged sixty-two; his mother was Edward's second queen Marguerite of France, Philip IV's half-sister.  Edmund was created earl of Kent by his half-brother Edward II, who was seventeen years his senior, on 28 July 1321, just before his twentieth birthday.  (Calendar of Fine Rolls 1319-27, p. 68)

Margaret Wake was the daughter of John, Lord Wake; first cousin of Roger Mortimer, first earl of March, via their mothers the Fiennes sisters; and great-great-granddaughter of both Llywelyn ap Iorwerth, prince of Gwynedd, and of John de Brienne, emperor of Constantinople.  She was married firstly to John Comyn, only son of John 'the Red Comyn', lord of Badenoch, stabbed to death by his great rival Robert Bruce in February 1306.  The younger John was killed at Bannockburn in June 1314 fighting for Edward II, and their little boy Aymer Comyn, named after John's maternal uncle Aymer de Valence, earl of Pembroke, died in infancy.  Margaret was born sometime in the mid to late 1290s and was thus some years older than her second husband Edmund.  She died on 29 September 1349; her brother Thomas, Lord Wake, whose heir she was - as his marriage to Henry of Lancaster and Maud Chaworth's eldest daughter Blanche was childless - had died on 31 May that year.  (Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem 1347-52, pp. 201-10, 233-5)

Margaret Wake and Edmund of Woodstock married around the middle of December 1325; the date of their wedding is not recorded but the Annales Paulini (ed. Stubbs, p. 310) say that it took place at about the same time as the death of Edmund's uncle Charles, count of Valois, which occurred on 16 December 1325.

The couple had four children.  Their youngest, John, earl of Kent, who was presumably named after his maternal grandfather John Wake, was born in Arundel Castle, Sussex on 7 April 1330; the exact date was given on record when John proved that he had come of age, i.e. twenty-one, in April 1351 (Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem 1347-52, pp. 455-6).  John was Edmund of Woodstock's posthumous child, as Edmund had been beheaded for treason in Winchester on 19 March 1330: see my articles about his plot to free his half-brother Edward of Caernarfon in the sidebar here, in my article in the English Historical Review and in my book Edward II: The Unconventional King.  John, earl of Kent, died on 27 December 1352, aged twenty-two; 'he died on the night of St John [the Evangelist]'s day in Christmas week last' and 'he died on the night after St Stephen last', says his Inquisition Post Mortem. John left a widow, Elisabeth of Jülich, who was the niece of Queen Philippa, being the daughter of Philippa's younger sister Joan of Hainault and William V, duke of Jülich in the Rhineland. The couple had no children.

John's heir to the earldom of Kent, and also to the lands of their childless maternal uncle Thomas, Lord Wake, was his sister Joan 'the Fair Maid of Kent', by far the most famous of Edmund of Woodstock and Margaret Wake's children and the only one who outlived John.  Joan, of course, married Edward III's eldest son Edward of Woodstock and was the mother of Richard II, and caused a great scandal in her early life by being married to two men at once, William Montacute, earl of Salisbury and Sir Thomas Holland.

The date of birth of Joan of Kent, princess of Wales and countess of Kent, is almost invariably, in pretty well every book and article I've ever seen on the subject, given as 29 September 1328.  I've been looking today at her brother John's Inquisition Post Mortem, taken between December 1352 and February 1353 (Cal Inq Post Mortem 1352-60, pp. 41-57).  Jurors in the numerous counties where John had held lands gave Joan's age in December 1352 as between 22 and 26, which would place her date of birth somewhere between 1326 and 1330.  This is entirely typical of IPMs, where the stated ages of the heirs of tenants-in-chief can vary by as much as ten years.  We're talking about jurors who may never even have seen Joan, giving their best guess as to how old she was - probably they had some vague idea when Edmund of Woodstock and Margaret Wake had married, and a rather better idea of when Edmund had been executed, and took a stab at an age somewhere between those dates.  Two counties, however, give Joan an exact date of birth.  The jurors of Nottinghamshire stated on 14 February 1353 that she was '25 years and more at St Michael last', that is, she turned 25 on 29 September 1352, which would make her date of birth 29 September 1327 (eight days after the alleged death of her uncle Edward II), and the jurors of Leicestershire said on 19 January 1353 that Joan was '26 years and more at St Michael last', which would make her date of birth 29 September 1326, five days after the invasion force of Queen Isabella and Roger Mortimer landed in Suffolk.  Given the date of Joan's parents' wedding, it is impossible that she was 'more' than 26 years old in 1352.  Her mother Margaret Wake, incidentally, died on Joan's birthday in 1349.

Edmund of Woodstock and Margaret Wake had two other children.  Their elder son Edmund was named as Earl Edmund's heir both by the parliament of November 1330 which pardoned the earl for the 'treason' he had committed in trying to free a supposedly dead man a few months previously, and in various entries in the chancery rolls in 1331.  Edmund died as a child sometime shortly before 13 October 1331 (Cal Fine Rolls 1327-37, pp. 277, 279), and his younger brother John (b. April 1330) became heir to the earldom of Kent.  It makes me so sad to think of these little children dying.  :-(

There was also another daughter, Margaret, of whom little is known except that she was betrothed to the Gascon lord Arnaud-Amanieu d'Albret in 1340.  He was much her junior, born in August 1338, and later became great chamberlain of France.  He eventually married Marguerite de Bourbon, one of the many, many grandchildren of Charles of Valois and thus a first cousin of Queen Philippa and a first cousin once removed of Margaret of Kent herself.  We know that Margaret of Kent must have died sometime before her brother John died in December 1352, or she would have been his co-heiress with their sister Joan.  We know that she can't have had any children alive in 1352, as otherwise they would have been John's co-heirs with their aunt, Joan.  The fate of this obscure aunt of Richard II, however, is unknown.  (And oddly enough, little Aymer Comyn mentioned above, who died in infancy in 1316 as far as I remember, was Richard II's uncle, older half-brother of Richard's mother Joan.  Richard wasn't even born until 1367.)

Edmund of Woodstock and Margaret Wake thus had four children together in their marriage of four years and three months.  Except that John was the youngest, the birth order of the children is uncertain.  The earliest that any of them could have been born is September 1326, nine months after Edmund and Margaret's wedding of c. mid-December 1325, and their second youngest cannot have been born any later than May or June 1329, as John was born in early April 1330 and must have been conceived in about July 1329, and Margaret would have been 'off-limits' to her husband for thirty or forty days after birthing her second last child.  Joan of Kent, from the evidence of John's IPM, was born either on 29 September 1326 or 29 September 1327.  If the former, she must have been Edmund of Woodstock and Margaret Wake's eldest child and conceived very soon after their wedding.  It is possible that some of the children were twins - their aunt, Edward II's sister Elizabeth, countess of Hereford, had twins William and Edward, so they may have run in the family - though I'm just speculating.  Joan and Margaret?  Joan and Edmund?  Margaret and Edmund?  Margaret and John?

The April 1351 proof of age of John, earl of Kent, offers another piece of evidence.  John was baptised on the day of his birth, 7 April 1330, in the church of St Bartholomew in Arundel.  James de Byne, one of the dozen jurors who gave testimony in 1351 as to John's date of birth, stated that "Edmund son of the said Edmund [of Woodstock, earl of Kent], and Brother John de Grenstede, prior of the order of Friars Preacher of Arundel, and Joan, sister of the said Edmund son of Edmund, lifted the said John from the sacred font on 7 April, 4 Edward III...".  So both Joan of Kent and her brother Edmund were considered old enough and big enough and responsible enough to lift their newborn brother out of the font, albeit with an adult helping.  Their sister, Margaret, however, was not.  Does this indicate that Margaret was the younger sister and not considered old enough for this task?  Neither Joan nor Edmund could have been older than three and a half at the time, but it doesn't seem very likely that Joan was only eighteen months old, as she would have been if she'd been born in September 1328 as everyone who writes about her always, always, always states.  (Where does that date come from?  Did someone perhaps once see John's IPM and mess up the maths and think that age 25 or 26 subtracted from 1352 equalled a date of birth in 1328, and everyone else has just copied it ever since without checking?  Or is there some other evidence somewhere I'm missing?)

One last point.  Joan of Kent secretly married her first husband Sir Thomas Holland in 1340, and later also married her fiancé William Montacute, son and heir of the earl of Salisbury and later earl of Salisbury himself, too afraid to admit what she had done.  Joan is usually stated to have been only twelve when she married Holland, who was many years her senior, born in around 1314 and thus about twenty-six in 1340.  According to the information of her brother Earl John's IPM, however, Joan must actually have been thirteen or fourteen at the time of her secret wedding, which is at least slightly less alarming by our modern standards.  It also means that when she gave birth to her youngest child Richard II on 6 January 1367, Joan was likely forty years old.  I do think the evidence indicates that she was rather older than is always assumed and stated nowadays.

07 November, 2014

Alice Fitzalan née de Warenne, Countess of Arundel

Alice was the sister of John de Warenne, earl of Surrey and Sussex (d. 1347) and the wife of Edmund Fitzalan, earl of Arundel, executed (or judicially murdered) by his cousin Roger Mortimer in 1326.  Here's what I know about her, and sadly, it isn't terribly much.

Alice and her brother John were the children of William de Warenne and Joan de Vere.  William, born in 1256, was the only son and heir of John de Warenne, earl of Surrey (1231-1304) and was killed jousting in December 1286.  Joan de Vere (d. 1293) was the daughter of Robert de Vere, earl of Oxford (d. 1296), whose mother Hawise de Quincy was the daughter of Saer de Quincy, earl of Winchester.  Alice de Warenne's paternal aunt Isabella married John Balliol, king of Scotland from 1292 to 1296, and was the mother of Balliol's heir Edward, Alice's first cousin.  Her first cousins also included Henry, Lord Percy (d. 1314), one of the men who besieged Piers Gaveston in Scarborough Castle in May 1312, and John de Vere, earl of Oxford (d. 1359).  She was a great-great-granddaughter of William Marshal, earl of Pembroke (d. 1219) via William's eldest daughter Maud and her second husband William de Warenne, earl of Surrey.

Alice's brother John was born on 30 June 1286, and their father William died on 15 December 1286.  Alice was born exactly six months later, on 15 June 1287.  She lost her mother Joan de Vere when she was six, though her grandfather the earl of Oxford lived until 1296 and her other grandfather the earl of Surrey until 1304, when he was succeeded as earl by Alice's brother John.  In early 1302, Richard Fitzalan, the earl of Arundel, died, leaving as his heir his eldest son Edmund, not yet seventeen.  Edward I granted Edmund's marriage to Alice's grandfather the earl of Surrey, and sometime before late September 1304 (when he died) Surrey offered Edmund to Alice in marriage.  Edmund rejected her.  (Patent Rolls 1301-07, p. 308). Oh dear, poor Alice.  Edmund, however, changed his mind, and he and Alice married in May 1306, according to the chronicler Piers Langtoft, around the same time as Alice's brother the new earl of Surrey married Edward I's granddaughter Joan of Bar, and Hugh Despenser the Younger married Joan's cousin Eleanor de Clare.  Edmund had just turned twenty-one at the time (born 1 May 1285) and Alice was almost nineteen.  They were third cousins once removed via common descent from William Marshal.  The couple had seven (or more) children together; I hope this indicates that their relationship worked out well in the end, after such an inauspicious start.  At least Edmund didn't make strenuous efforts to have his marriage annulled, as Alice's brother John did.

Edmund and Alice's eldest son Richard, Edmund's successor as earl of Arundel and also heir to his uncle John de Warenne of Surrey, was probably born in 1313 or the beginning of 1314; he was said to be seven when he married Hugh Despenser the Younger's daughter Isabel in Edward II's presence in February 1321.  Richard was known as Copped Hat, and was one of the richest, or indeed the richest, men in England in the entire fourteenth century.  He had his marriage to Isabel Despenser annulled in 1344 and married secondly Eleanor of Lancaster, and treated his and Isabel's son Edmund appallingly, even going so far as to describe him as 'that certain Edmund who calls himself my son'.  Although this incredibly wealthy man left bequests in his 1375 will to his children with Eleanor of Lancaster, their grandchildren and some of his nieces and nephews, he didn't leave so much as a penny to Edmund or Edmund's three daughters.  I have to admit that I really dislike Earl Richard.  Edmund (the elder, died 1326) and Alice de Warenne appear to have had two younger sons as well, Edmund and Michael, about whom I know absolutely nothing.

Alice de Warenne and Edmund Fitzalan also had several daughters. In 1325, their daughter Alice married Edward II's nephew John de Bohun (born 1305), future earl of Hereford, the eldest son of Edward's sister Elizabeth and Earl Humphrey, killed at the battle of Boroughbridge in March 1322. Alice Fitzalan and John de Bohun were third cousins via common descent from Isabel of Angouleme, queen of King John, and Pope John XXII granted them a dispensation in November 1324 (Papal Letters 1305-41, p. 242).  Edward II pardoned the earl of Arundel 1000 marks of the 2000 marks the earl owed him for the marriage in December 1325 (Patent Rolls 1324-7, p. 281; Memoranda Rolls Michaelmas 1326-Michaelmas 1327, p. 32).  Alice de Bohun née Fitzalan, countess of Hereford, died childless at an uncertain date, probably in the late 1320s, before 1330 or thereabouts when John married his second wife Margaret Basset (this marriage was also childless).

Other daughters of Edmund and Alice were Eleanor, Aline and Mary.  It's tricky to try to work out their birth order or when they were born, though the two younger daughters at least seem to have been born late in their father's life, given the ages of their husbands and children.  Eleanor was presumably the eldest or second eldest daughter after Alice, as she married as her second husband Gerard, Lord Lisle, who was born in the early 1300s, and had her son Warin in about 1330.  Warin, the grandson of Edmund Fitzalan and Alice de Warenne, had one child Margaret, born around 1360, who married Thomas Lord Berkeley (1353-1417, grandson of Hugh Despenser the Younger and great-grandson of Roger Mortimer, first earl of March).  Eleanor Fitzalan Lisle died in or before 1347.  The next daughter of Edmund and Alice was probably Aline, who married Roger Lestrange of Knockyn, who was born in 1327.  Aline and Roger's son John was born in 1362, and they also had a daughter Lucy, who married William Lord Willoughby de Eresby, who was born in about 1370.  Edmund and Alice's fourth daughter Mary married John Lestrange of Blackmere, who was born in 1332, so must have been some years Mary's junior (even if Mary was Edmund's posthumous child she can't have been born later than the summer of 1327).  Mary died in 1396 and had two children: a son John born in about 1353 and a daughter Ankaret, born in 1361, who was the mother of John Talbot, first earl of Shrewsbury and of Richard Talbot, archbishop of Dublin.

Edmund Fitzalan, earl of Arundel, died a horrible, slow, painful and bloody death in Hereford on 17 November 1326, beheaded with at least seventeen and perhaps twenty-two strokes of an axe by a 'worthless wretch'.  He was given no trial and was accused of no crime, and presumably a blunt blade had been ordered to increase his suffering as much as possible.  At some point in late 1326, Countess Alice's brother John de Warenne, earl of Surrey, who had been a staunch ally of Edward II for most of his reign, made his peace with Queen Isabella and Roger Mortimer, perhaps on hearing news of the hideous death of his brother-in-law Edmund.  When and how this happened is unknown, but for Alice - however she might have felt about it - at least it meant that she had someone on the 'winning' side looking out for her.  This was important as Edmund was later condemned for treason by parliament and all his lands and goods were forfeit to the Crown.  Queen Isabella helped herself to the possessions Edmund had stored at Chichester Cathedral, including £524 in cash (Patent Rolls 1324-7, p. 339).  In March and April 1327, arrangements were made to provide Alice with an income for the sustenance of herself and her children (Patent Rolls 1327-30, pp. 42, 312; Close Rolls 1327-30, pp. 68, 80, 148 etc).  This may have included her young daughter-in-law Isabel Despenser; Isabel's father Hugh the Younger and grandfather the earl of Winchester were dead, and her mother Eleanor de Clare and eldest brother Hugh were in prison and in no position to help her.

Alice, countess of Arundel, died sometime before 23 May 1338, leaving at least five or six children (she had outlived her daughter Alice) and several grandchildren.  Her grandson Richard, earl of Arundel (b. c. 1346) would be executed by Richard II in 1397, and another, Thomas, became archbishop of Canterbury.  She was also the great-grandmother of an archbishop of Dublin.  The modern-day Fitzalan-Howard family, dukes of Norfolk and earls of Arundel and Surrey, are Alice and Edmund's descendants.