My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

And then there's Maud... TOWANDA!

Let me preface this by saying that my research has been via and not as concrete and valid as research that is done by genealogists who actually know what they're doing. If my research is right, it's super cool to have Maud as an ancestor. If my research is wrong, she's still a super cool historical figure to blog about. So, here goes:

my mom is the former
Norma Pennington, daughter of
Virginia Jackson, daughter of
Mary Alice Ray, daughter of
Mary Jane Alderman, daughter of
Daniel Alderman, son of
Nancy Ann Newton, daughter of
Isaac Newton, son of
Abraham Newton, son of another
Abraham Newton, son of
Daniel Newton, son of
Anne Loker, daughter of
Elizabeth French, daughter of
Susan Warren, daughter of
William Warren, son of
Margaret Leigh, daughter of
Eleanor Savage, daughter of
Katherine Stanley, daughter of
Lady Joan Goushill, daughter of
Elizabeth Fitzalan, daughter of
Elizabeth De Bohun, daughter of
Elizabeth deBadlesmere, daughter of
Margaret FitzGilbert deClare, daughter of
Juliana FitzGerald, daughter of
Matilda dePrendergast, daughter of
Matilda deBurgh, daughter of
Egidia deLacy, daughter of
Margaret deBraose, daughter of
Maud deSaint-Valery aka TOWANDA...

ok... maybe her name wasn't really TOWANDA but when I read her biography, my 26x great-grandmother sounded like a Steel Magnolia of the nth degree! This is the wikipedia account:

She was born Maud de St. Valéry in France in about 1155, the child of Bernard de St. Valéry[2][3] of Hinton Waldrist in Berkshire (nowOxfordshire)[4] and his first wife, Matilda. Her paternal grandfather was Reginald de St. Valéry (died c.1162).
She had many siblings and half-siblings, including Thomas de St. Valery (died 1219), who was a son of Bernard by his second wife Eleanor de Domnart. Thomas married Adele de Ponthieu, by whom he had a daughter, Annora, who in her turn married Robert III, Count of Dreux, by whom she had issue. Thomas fought on the French side, at the Battle of Bouvines on 27 July 1214.[5]
Sometime around 1166, Maud married William de Braose, 4th Lord of Bramber, son of William de Braose, 3rd Lord of Bramber and Bertha of Hereford de Pitres. He also held the lordships of GowerHayBreconRadnorBuilthAbergavennyKingtonPainscastleSkenfrithGrosmontWhite Castle and Briouze in Normandy. When King John of England ascended the throne in 1199, he became a court favourite and was also awarded the lordship of LimerickIreland. Maud had a marriage portion, Tetbury from her father's estate.
Maud supported her husband's military ambitions and he put her in charge of Hay Castle and surrounding territory. She is often referred to in history as the Lady of Hay. In 1198, Maud defended Painscastle in Elfael against a massive Welsh attack led by Gwenwynwyn, Prince of Powys. She successfully held off Gwenwynwyn's forces for three weeks until English reinforcements arrived. Over three thousand Welsh were killed. Painscastle was known as Matilda's Castle by the locals.[6]
Maud and William are reputed to have had 16 children.[7] The best documented of these are listed below.


[edit]Enmity of King John

King John of England:
Maud de Braose's enemy
In 1208, William de Braose quarrelled with his friend and patron King John. The reason is not known but it is alleged that Maud made indiscreet comments regarding the murder of King John's nephew Arthur of Brittany. There was also a large sum of money (five thousand marks) de Braose owed the King. Whatever the reason, John demanded Maud's son William be sent to him as a hostage for her husband's loyalty. Maud refused, and stated loudly within earshot of the King's officers that "she would not deliver her children to a king who had murdered his own nephew."[8] Maud, upon realising her grave error, tried to make amends by sending Queen Isabella a herd of four hundred cattle, whose quality she had previously boasted of.[9] The King would not be mollified and quickly led troops to the Welsh border and seized all of the castles that belonged to William de Braose. Maud and her eldest son William fled to Ireland, where they found refuge at Trim Castle with the de Lacys, the family of her daughter Margaret. In 1210, King John sent an expedition to Ireland. Maud and her son escaped but were apprehended on the Antrim coast while trying to sail for Scotland.[10][11] After being briefly held atCarrickfergus Castle,[12] they were dispatched to England.

[edit]Imprisonment at Corfe Castle

Maud and her son William were first imprisoned at Windsor Castle, but were shortly afterwards transferred to Corfe Castle in Dorsetwhere they were placed inside the dungeon. Maud and William both starved to death.[12] Her husband died a year later in exile in France where he had gone disguised as a beggar to escape King John's wrath after the latter had declared him an outlaw, following his alliance with Llywelyn the Great, whom he had assisted in open rebellion against the King, an act which John regarded as treason. He was buried in the Abbey of St. Victor, Paris.

Corfe Castle; within whose dungeon Maud de Braose and her son William were starved to death
Maud's daughter Margaret de Lacy founded a religious house, the Hospital of St. John, in AconburyHerefordshire in her memory.[13] On 10 October 1216, eight days before his death, King John conceded three carucates of land in the royal forest of Aconbury to Margaret for the construction of the religious house. He sent the instructions to her husband Walter de Lacy, who held the post of Sheriff of Hereford, by letters patent.[14]
Maud de Braose features in many Welsh folklore myths and legends. There is one legend which says that Maud built the castle of Hay-on-Wye single handed in one night, carrying the stones in her apron.[15] She was also said to have been extremely tall and often donned armour while leading troops into battle.[16]
The legend about her building Hay Castle probably derives from the time she added the gateway arch to a tower which was built in the 1180s.[17]
In contemporary records, she was described as beautiful, very wise, doughty, and vigorous. She kept up the war against the Welsh and conquered much from them.[13]
The manner in which Maud and her son William met their deaths so outraged the English nobility that Magna Carta, which King John was forced to sign in 1215, contains clause 39; it reads:
No man shall be taken ,imprisoned, outlawed, banished or in any way destroyed, nor will we proceed against or prosecute him, except by the lawful judgement of his peers or by the law of the land.