Nielsen Hayden genealogy

Richard Champernoun

Male - 1419


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  • Name Richard Champernoun  [1
    Born of Modbury, Devon, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [2, 3
    Gender Male 
    Baptised Wincanton, Somerset, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [4, 5
    Alternate birth 29 Jun 1344  Suddon, Somerset, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [2, 4, 5, 6
    Died 20 Jan 1419  [2, 6
    Alternate death Aft 26 Feb 1419  [4
    Person ID I12956  Ancestry of PNH, TNH, and others | Ancestor of TNH
    Last Modified 2 Sep 2018 

    Father Thomas Champernoun,   b. of Modbury, Devon, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Aft 12 Nov 1387 
    Mother Eleanor Rohaut,   d. Bef Apr 1369 
    Family ID F4417  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Alice Astley 
    Children 
    +1. Joan Champernoun,   d. 1419
    Last Modified 19 Sep 2018 
    Family ID F8133  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Katherine Daubeney,   b. of South Ingleby, Lincolnshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Bef 1419 
    Married Bef 13 Aug 1394  [4
    Children 
    +1. John Champernoun,   b. of Inceworth in Maker, Cornwall, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 2 Jun 1449
    Last Modified 19 Sep 2018 
    Family ID F4389  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • "On the Sunday following his baptism, his great-grandfather and godfather, Sir Richard Lovel, held a feast at la Mersh, by Wyncaulton for all who attended to bear witness to this event. He was a knight by 27 May 1379 and served as Sheriff of Devonshire 1368-69, 1381-82, and 1387-88." [The Ancestry of Dorothea Poyntz, citation details below.]

      Richard Champernoun was the direct ancestor of several well-known adventurer-explorers.

      Ancestor of Sir Walter Ralegh:

      Richard Champernoun (d. 1419) = Alice Astley
      Joan Champernoun (d. 1419) = John Courtenay (d. <1406)
      Philip Courtenay (1404-1476) = Elizabeth Hungerford (d. 1476)
      Philip Courtenay (1430-1489) = Elizabeth Wonwell (1432-1482)
      Margaret Courtenay (d. 1527) = John Champernowne (1458-1503)
      Philip Champernowne (d. 1545) = Catherine Carew (d. 1546)
      Katherine Champernowne (d. 1594) = Walter Ralegh (1505-1581)
      Sir Walter Ralegh (1554-1618)

      And of Sir Humphrey Gilbert, a man loathsome even by the standards of imperialist chancers:

      Richard Champernoun (d. 1419) = Alice Astley
      Joan Champernoun (d. 1419) = John Courtenay (d. <1406)
      Philip Courtenay (1404-1476) = Elizabeth Hungerford (d. 1476)
      Philip Courtenay (1430-1489) = Elizabeth Wonwell (1432-1482)
      Margaret Courtenay (d. 1527) = John Champernowne (1458-1503)
      Philip Champernowne (d. 1545) = Catherine Carew (d. 1546)
      Katherine Champernowne (d. 1594) = Otho Gilbert (d. 1547)
      Sir Humphrey Gilbert (1537-1583)

      And ancestor of Francis Champernowne and his father Arthur Champernowne, both of whom were associates of Sir Ferdinando Gorges in his early efforts to settle and develop the coasts of what are now Massachusetts and Maine. Gorges was married to Mary Fulford, sister of Arthur Champernowne's wife Bridget Fulford. Francis settled permanently in Massachusetts in 1637.

      Richard Champernoun (d. 1419) = Alice Astley
      Joan Champernoun (d. 1419) = John Courtenay (d. <1406)
      Philip Courtenay (1404-1476) = Elizabeth Hungerford (d. 1476)
      Philip Courtenay (1430-1489) = Elizabeth Wonwell (1432-1482)
      Margaret Courtenay (d. 1527) = John Champernowne (1458-1503)
      Philip Champernowne (d. 1545) = Catherine Carew (d. 1546)
      Arthur Champernowne (1524-1578) = Mary Norreys (d. 1570)
      Gawen Champernowne (1554-1591) = Roberta d'Orge
      Arthur Champernowne (1580-1650) = Bridget Fulford
      Francis Champernowne (1614-1687)

      It's notable that the Champernoun family was rich, and rich for a long time. In the direct male line, the earliest known individual, Jordan de Cambernon (d. >1172), married a granddaughter of Henry I. His 3XG-grandson Richard de Champernoun married a granddaughter of King John. So why did Arthur Champernowne and his son Francis involve themselves in the risky, high-stakes business of financing fishing colonies in Newfoundland and on the coast of Maine? The answer is, because their line of Champernowns had lost all their money.

      Arthur's maternal grandfather, remarkably, was Gabriel d'Orge, count of Montgomery, who at a joust in 1559 accidentally killed Henri II, king of France. Despite the dying king's forgiveness, so traumatized was the count by this -- and so immediate and complete was his exclusion from French courtly society -- that in due course he converted to Protestantism and became a leader of the Huguenots. He was one of the few Huguenots to escape the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre, from which he fled to England. The queen mother, Catherine de Medici, demanded his extradition, which Elizabeth I refused. In 1573, d'Orge raised a fleet in an unsuccessful attempt to relieve the siege of La Rochelle. The next year, he tried to raise an insurrection in Normandy but was captured and executed. Just before his execution he was told that all his property and that of his children would be confiscated and all their titles stripped.

      (All of which sounds remarkably like a Dumas novel, and in fact a novel about Gabriel, The Two Dianas (1846-47) was published with Dumas' name on it, albeit mostly or entirely written by his friend and collaborator Paul Meurice.)

      The count's daughter Roberta had married the Devon squire Gawen Champernowne, father of Arthur, and Gawen had become a close ally of the count. Now their branch of the family was substantially penniless. It's little wonder that Arthur and Francis looked to the potential riches of the New World, despite the risks involved.

  • Sources 
    1. [S1462] Todd A. Farmerie, post to soc.genealogy.medieval.

    2. [S1526] The Ancestry of Dorothea Poyntz, Wife of Reverend John Owsley, Generations 1-15, Fourth Preliminary Edition by Ronny O. Bodine and Bro. Thomas Spalding, Jr. 2013.

    3. [S145] Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonists Who Came to America Before 1700, by Frederick Lewis Weis and Walter Lee Sheppard, Jr. 8th edition, William R. Beall & Kaleen E. Beall, eds. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 2004, 2006, 2008.

    4. [S142] Royal Ancestry, by Douglas Richardson. Kimball G. Everingham, ed. 2013.

    5. [S776] Ronny Bodine, 30 Jan 1999, post to soc.genealogy.medieval.

    6. [S775] Powys-Lybbe Ancestry, by Tim Powys-Lybbe.