Nielsen Hayden genealogy

James de Aldithley

Male Abt 1220 - Abt 1272  (~ 52 years)

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Generation: 1

  1. 1.  James de Aldithley was born about 1220 in of Heleigh in Audley, Staffordshire, England (son of Henry of Aldithley and Bertrade de Mainwaring); died about 11 Jun 1272 in Ireland.

    Other Events:

    • Alternate death: 23 Jun 1272, Thomond, Ireland


    Also de Aldithel, Audley. Crusader with Prince Edward, 1270.

    "James of Aldithley, 1st or 2nd s. and h., b. about 1220. Keeper of the castle of Newcastle-under-Lyme, 30 Oct. 1250. He joined in a letter of the Barons to the Pope in 1258. Witnessed, as one of the King's sworn Council, the confirmation by Henry III of the Provisions of Oxford, 1258; Lord Marcher; Sheriff of Salop, and co. Staff., 1261-62 and 1270-71; Justiciar of Ireland 1270-72. He took an active part on the King's side against the Barons, being in arms for the King on the Welsh Marches in 1264, and engaging in the Evesham campaign in 1265. He m., in 1244, Ela, da. of William Longespee (who d. 1250), s. and h. of Ela, suo jure Countess of Salisbury, by Idoine, da. and h. of Richard de Camville. She brought him the manors of Stratton, afterwards called Stratton Audley, and Wretchwick, Oxon, in frank marriage. He d. about 11 June (1272) 56 Hen. III, in Ireland, by 'breaking his neck.' Writ for his Inq. p. m. 16 July 1272. His widow d. apparently shortly before 22 Nov. 1299. Inq. p. m. (1325-26) 19 Edw. II." [Complete Peerage I:337-38, as corrected in Volume XIV.]

    James married Ela Longespée before 12 Jun 1244. Ela (daughter of William Longespée and Idoine de Camville) died before 22 Nov 1299. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

    1. Nicholas de Audley was born before 1258 in of Heleigh in Audley, Staffordshire, England; died before 28 Aug 1299.
    2. Hugh de Audley was born about 1267 in of Stratton, Stratton Audley, Oxfordshire, England; died between 1325 and 1326.

Generation: 2

  1. 2.  Henry of Aldithley was born about 1175 in of Heleigh in Audley, Staffordshire, England (son of Adam of Aldithley and Emma fitz Ralph); died before Nov 1246.

    Other Events:

    • Alternate death: Bef 19 Nov 1246


    Also called Henry de Audley; Aldithlegh.

    Sheriff of Shrophsire and Staffordshire 1227-8, 1229-32.

    "Henry of Aldithley, 2nd son of Adam of Aldithley, (who d. bet. 1203 and 1211) by Emma, daughter of Ralf fitz Orm, of Darlaston, Staffs; was b. about 1175; with his father, he was witness to a charter of Harvey Bagot in 1194. He bought large estates from Eleanor Malbank in 1214; in 1227 he acquired the manors of Edgmund and Newport, and in 1230 that of Ford, all in Salop, and all held by him direct from the Crown, though not by military or knight service. He was Under Sheriff of Salop and co. Stafford 1217-20, and Sheriff 1227-32; was in command of the Welsh Marches 1223-46. He built the castle of Heligh, co. Stafford; and Red Castle, Salop. In 1223 he founded Hulton Abbey. He was appointed Custodian of Chester and Beeston Castle, 22 June 1237, on the extinction of the the earldom of Chester. He m. in 1217, Bertred, daughter of Ralf Mainwaring, Seneschal of Chester. He d. in 1246, shortly bef. Nov. His widow was living in 1249. She was bur. in Hulton Abbey." [Complete Peerage I:337, as corrected in Volume XIV.]

    From A Genealogical History of the Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire:

    "That this family of Alditheley, vulgarly called Audley," says Dugdale, "came to be great and eminent, the ensuing discourse will sufficiently manifest: but that the rise thereof was no higher than King John's time, and that the first who assumed this surname was a branch of that ancient and noble family of Verdon, whose chief seat was at Alton Castle in the northern part of Staffordshire, I am very inclined to believe; partly by reason that Henry had the inheritance of Alditheley given him by Nicholas de Verdon, who d. in the 16th Henry III [1232], or near that time; and partly for that he bore for his arms the same ordinary as Vernon that probably the ancestor of this Henry first seated himself at Alditheley: for that there hath been an ancient mansion there, the large moat, northwards from the parish church there (somewhat less than a furlong, and upon the chief part of a fair ascent), do sufficiently manifest."

    Henry de Alditheley, to whom Dugdale alludes above, being in great favour with Ranulph, Earl of Chester and Lincoln (the most powerful subject of England in his time), obtained from that nobleman a grant of Newhall in Cheshire with manors in Staffordshire and other parts--and for his adhesion to King John, in that monarch's struggle with the insurrectionary barons, a royal grant of the lordship o fStorton in Warwickshire, part of the possessions of Roger de Summerville. In the first four years of King Henry III [1216-1220], he executed the office of sheriff for the counties of Salop and Stafford as deputy for his patron, the great Earl Ranulph. In the 10th of Henry III [1226], this Henry de Alditheley was appointed governor of the castles of Carmarthen and Cardigan and made sheriff the next year of the counties of Salop and Stafford and constable of the castles of Salop and Bridgenorth, which sheriffalty he held for five years. Upon his retirement from office, he had a confirmation of all such lands whereof he was then possessed as well those granted to him by Ranulph, Earl of Chester, and Nicholas de Verdon, as those in Ireland given him by Hugh de Lacy, Earl of Ulster, whose constable he was in that province. He subsequently obtained divers other territorial grants from the crown, but, notwithstanding, when Richard Mareschall, Earl of Pembroke, rebelled and made an incursion into Wales, the king, Henry III, thought it prudent to secure the persons of this Henry and all the other barons-marchers. He was afterwards, however, constituted governor of Shrewsbury in place of John de Lacy, Earl of Lincoln, and, on the death of John, Earl of Chester, governor of the castle of Chester, and also that of Beeston, then called the "Castle on the Rock," and soon after made governor of Newcastle-under-Lyne. This powerful feudal baron m. Bertred, dau. of Ralph de Meisnil-warin, of Cheshire, and had a son, James, and a dau., Emme, who m. Griffith ap Madoc, Lord of Bromefield, a person of great power in Wales. He d. in 1236, having founded and endowed the Abbey of Hilton near to his castle at Heleigh, in Staffordshire, for Cistercian monks, and was s. by his son, James de Alditheley.

    Henry married Bertrade de Mainwaring in 1217. Bertrade (daughter of Ralph Mainwaring and Amicia de Meschines) died after 1248; was buried in Hulton Abbey, Staffordshire, England. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

  2. 3.  Bertrade de Mainwaring (daughter of Ralph Mainwaring and Amicia de Meschines); died after 1248; was buried in Hulton Abbey, Staffordshire, England.

    Other Events:

    • Alternate death: 1249
    • Alternate death: Aft 3 Nov 1249

    1. Alice de Audley died after Aug 1265.
    2. Amicia de Audley
    3. Emma de Audley was born about 1218 in of Heleigh in Audley, Staffordshire, England; died after 22 Dec 1270.
    4. 1. James de Aldithley was born about 1220 in of Heleigh in Audley, Staffordshire, England; died about 11 Jun 1272 in Ireland.

Generation: 3

  1. 4.  Adam of Aldithley was born in in of Audley, Staffordshire, England (son of Liulf); died between 1203 and 1211.

    Other Events:

    • Alternate death: Between 1201 and 1211

    Adam married Emma fitz Ralph about 1170. Emma (daughter of Ralph fitz Orm) was born in in of Darlaston, Staffordshire, England; died before Nov 1246. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

  2. 5.  Emma fitz Ralph was born in in of Darlaston, Staffordshire, England (daughter of Ralph fitz Orm); died before Nov 1246.
    1. 2. Henry of Aldithley was born about 1175 in of Heleigh in Audley, Staffordshire, England; died before Nov 1246.

  3. 6.  Ralph Mainwaring (son of Roger le Mesnilwarin); died after 1189.

    Other Events:

    • Alternate death: Aft 1201


    Also called Ralph Mesnilwarin; Ralph de Mednil War.

    Justice of Chester. Seneschal of Chester.

    Ralph married Amicia de Meschines about 1179. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

  4. 7.  Amicia de Meschines (daughter of Hugh of Chester and (Unknown first wife of Hugh of Chester)).


    Also called Amice of Chester. Her legitimacy was the subject of a lengthy seventeenth-century controversy which can be read, in all its magnificently florid language, here.

    It seems to us entirely plausible that Amicia was Hugh's legitimate daughter by an unknown earlier wife. The Earl's behavior toward Amicia, and the attitude shown by all their contemporaries -- to say nothing of the illustrious guests recorded as having attended Amicia's wedding to Ralph Mainwairing -- are all consistent with Amicia being legitimate. It's far from impossible that history should have lost track of the identity of a twelfth-century magnate's short-lived first wife. We don't even have firm knowledge of the birth dates of some post-Conquest English kings.

    A summary of the issues, from Burke's Dormant and Extinct Peerages:

    The earl had another dau., whose legitimacy is questionable, namely Amicia,* m. to Ralph de Mesnilwarin, justice of Chester, "a person," says Dugdale, "of very ancient family," from which union the Mainwarings, of Over Peover, in the co. Chester, derive. Dugdale considers Amicia to be a dau. of the earl by a former wife. But Sir Peter Leicester, in his Antiquities of Chester, totally denies her legitimacy. "I cannot but mislike," says he, "the boldness and ignorance of that herald who gave to Mainwaring (late of Peover), the elder, the quartering of the Earl of Chester's arms; for if he ought of right to quarter that coat, then must he be descended from a co-heir to the Earl of Chester; but he was not; for the co-heirs of Earl Hugh married four of the greatest peers in the kingdom."

    (*) Upon the question of this lady's legitimacy there was a long paper war between Sir Peter Leicester and Sir Thomas Mainwaring -- and eventually the matter was referred to the judges, of whose decision Wood says, "at an assize held at Chester, 1675, the controversy was decided by the justices itinerant, who, as I have heard, adjudged the right of the matter to Mainwaring."

    The passage from Dugdale that evidently occasioned Sir Peter Leycester's astonishment and disbelief, from his Baronage of England, 1675, reprinted by Georg Olms Verlag, Hildesheim & New York, 1977; Earls of Chester, pp. 40-41:

    [I]t is certain that [Sir Hugh] had another Daughter called Amicia, married to Raphe de Mesnilwarin (a person of a very ancient Family, and Justice of Chester, in those days) whose Legitimacy is doubted by some; the cheif reason they give for it, being, that they find no Memorial, that Earl Hugh her Father had a former Wife.

    That she was his Daughter, sufficiently appeareth, not only from his Grant of two Knight Fees with her in Frank-marriage, unto Raphe de Mesnilwarin before mentioned, where he so termeth her. But by another Deed of Roger de Mesnilwarin her Son, wherein he calls Ranulph, Earl of Chester, (Son to this Earl) his Uncle.

    As to her Legitimacy, therefore I do not well understand how there can be any question, it being known Maxim in Law, that nothing can be given in Frank-marriage to a Bastard.

    The Point being then thus briefly cleared, I shall not need to raise further Arguments from Probabilities to back it, then to desire it may be observed, that Bertra (whom I conclude to have been his second Wife) was married to him, when he was in years, and she, herself, very young, as is evident from what I have before instanced. So that he having been Earl no less then twenty eight years, it must necessarily follow, that this Bertra was not born, till four years after he came to the Earldom. Nor is it any marvel he should then take such a young Wife, having at that time no Issue-male to succeed him in this he great Inheritance."

    From Palatine Anthology: A Collection of Ancient Poems and Ballads Relating to Lancashire and Chester ed. James Orchard Halliwell (London: 1850):

    The following old ballad relates to a famous dispute between two Cheshire knights, Sir Peter Leycester and Sir Thomas Mainwaring, about the legitimacy of Amicia, daughter of Hugh Lupus. The worthy knights were related by marriage, and the controversy agitated the county for many years, and was hardly settled by the death of one of the principal controversialists. Communicated to me by Mr. W. H. BLACK.

    A new Ballad, made of a high and mighty Controversy between two Cheshire Knights, 1673.

    (From the ASHMOLEAN MSS. No. 860, iii, art. 1, and No. 836, art. 183.)

    Two famous wights, both Cheshire Knights,
    Thomas yclep'd and Petre,
    A quarrel had, which was too bad
    As bad as is my metre.

    Neere kinsmen were they, yet had a great fray,
    Concerning things done quondam;
    I think as long since as Will Rufus was Prince,
    E'en about their Great-great-grandame.

    Sir Peter (good man) this quarell began:
    Whilst he tumbles ore ancient deedes,
    Old women can't have quiet rest in their graves,
    So loud he proclaims what he reades.

    When in reading he found (as he thought) good ground
    To judge his Grannam a bastard;
    Though he blemisht her name, yet it to proclaim
    He resolv'd hee'd be no dastard.

    But boldly durst say, that AMICIA
    Daughter of Hugh Earle of Chester
    For certaine was bore to him . . . .
    As sure as his name was Leycester.

    To this good intent he us'd much argument
    The which all such as are willing
    Fully to know, let them quickly bestow
    Upon his Booke sixteene shilling.

    His Grannam's his friend; yet truth hee'l defend
    And little dirt he throws on her,
    For as now, so then, among your great men,
    A bastard is small dishonour.

    Another grandchild, hearing this was stark wild,
    The affront he could not digest;
    But takes pen in hand, the same to withstand,
    As scorning to fowl his own nest.

    His Grannam hee'l right, against the erring Knight,
    That slander'd her without warrant:
    Who does not his best, to free ladies opprest,
    Is not a true Knight Errant.

    Hist'ry and lawes he cites for his cause,
    With Judges and Heraldes; what more?
    With these hee'l defy the scandalous lye
    That made him . . . . .

    They us'd not their swords, but their pens and fowl words,
    Which noyse with other folks laughter,
    Could not chuse to awake (to clere this mistake)
    The jolly old Earl and his daughter.

    Then up start[s] Earl Hughe, and sayes "Is it true--
    That I, brave Chester's Earle,
    Am summon'd to appear before Justices here,
    As charg'd with a by-blow girle?"

    Not another word, but clapt hand on his sword;
    While she (gentle AMICIA)
    For feare of some slaughter that might come after,
    Besought him in patience to stay.

    But she told her Grandson, "'Twas uncivilly done
    Such a hideous pudder to keep:
    Whilst he dreams that folks soules do snort in dark holes
    To awake us out of our sleep.

    "Should it have been true, that's suspected by you,
    Its father was able to nourish
    The barne he had got, and sure I should not
    Have been any charge to the parish.

    "But you, dear Sir Thomas, (much honor to your domus)
    That my cause you have so well defended;
    Henceforth leave AMICIA, both keepe Amicitia;
    And so let the quarell be ended."

    All this said, the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography also notes that "[t]he feud, however, was not merely a dispute over genealogical and legal niceties, but reflected the division on the Cheshire bench between those like Leycester who sought a rigorous enforcement of the Act of Uniformity and the Conventicle Acts and those such as Mainwaring who opposed this policy."

    1. Roger Mainwaring was born in in of Warmingham, Cheshire, England; died before 1244.
    2. 3. Bertrade de Mainwaring died after 1248; was buried in Hulton Abbey, Staffordshire, England.

Generation: 4

  1. 8.  Liulf was born in in of Audley, Staffordshire, England (son of Liulf).
    1. 4. Adam of Aldithley was born in in of Audley, Staffordshire, England; died between 1203 and 1211.

  2. 10.  Ralph fitz Orm was born in in of Darlaston, Staffordshire, England.
    1. 5. Emma fitz Ralph was born in in of Darlaston, Staffordshire, England; died before Nov 1246.

  3. 12.  Roger le Mesnilwarin (son of William Mesnilwarin).


    Gave a third of Nether Tabley to Chester Abbey in the reign of Henry II.

    1. 6. Ralph Mainwaring died after 1189.

  4. 14.  Hugh of Chester was born about 1141 (son of Ranulph de Gernons and Matilda of Gloucester); died on 30 Jun 1181 in Leek, Staffordshire, England; was buried in Abbey of St. Werburg, Chester, Cheshire, England.

    Other Events:

    • Alternate birth: 1147, Merionethshire, Wales


    Earl of Chester. Also known as Hugh le Meschin; Hugh de Meschines; Hugh of Kevelioc; Hugh de Cyveiliog.

    1908 DNB entry on Hugh of Kevelioc:

    [By Thomas Frederick Tout.]

    HUGH (D. 1181) called HUGH of CYVEILIOG, palatine Earl of Chester, was the son of Ranulf II, Earl of Chester, and of his wife Matilda, daughter of Earl Robert of Gloucester, the illegitimate son of Henry I. He is sometimes called Hugh of Cyveiliog, because, according to a late writer, he was born in that district of Wales (Powel, Hist. of Cambria, p. 295). His father died on 16 Dec. 1153, whereupon, being probably still under age, he succeeded to his possessions on both sides of the Channel. These included the hereditary viscounties of Avranches and Bayeux. Hugh was present at the council of Clarendon in January 1164 which drew up the assize of Clarendon (Stubbs, Select Charters, p. 138). In 1171 he was in Normandy (Eyton, Itinerary of Henry II, p. 158).

    Hugh joined the great feudal revolt against Henry II in 1173. Aided by Ralph of Fougeres, he utilised his great influence on the north-eastern marches of Brittany to excite the Bretons to revolt. Henry II despatched an army of Brabant mercenaries against them. The rebels were defeated in a battle, and on 20 Aug. were shut up in the castle of Dol, which they had captured by fraud not long before. On 23 Aug. Henry II arrived to conduct the siege in person (Hoveden, ii. 51). Hugh and his comrades had no provisions (Jordan Fantosme in Howlett, Chron. of Stephen, Henry II, and Richard I, iii. 221). They were therefore forced to surrender on 26 Aug. on a promise that their lives and limbs would be saved (W. Newburgh in Howlett, i. 176). Fourscore knights surrendered with them (Diceto, i. 378). Hugh was treated very leniently by Henry, and was confined at Falaise, whither the Earl and Countess of Leicester were also soon brought as prisoners. When Henry II returned to England, he took the two earls with him. They were conveyed from Barfleur to Southampton on 8 July 1174. Hugh was probably afterwards imprisoned at Devizes (Eyton, p. 180). On 8 Aug., however, he was taken back from Portsmouth to Barfleur, when Henry II went back to Normandy. He was now imprisoned at Caen, whence he was removed to Falaise. He was admitted to terms with Henry before the general peace, and witnessed the peace of Falaise on 11 Oct. (Fœdera, i. 31).

    Hugh seems to have remained some time longer without complete restoration. At last, at the council of Northampton on 13 Jan. 1177, he received grant of the lands on both sides of the sea which he had held fifteen days before the war broke out (Benedictus, i. 135; Hoveden, ii. 118). In March he witnessed the Spanish award. In May, at the council at Windsor, Henry II restored him his castles, and required him to go to Ireland, along with William Fitzaldhelm and others, to prepare the way for the king's son John (Benedictus, i. 161). But no great grants of Irish land were conferred on him, and he took no prominent part, in the Irish campaigns. He died at Leek in Staffordshire on 30 June 1181 (ib. i. 277; Monasticon, iii. 218; Ormerod, Cheshire, i. 29). He was buried next his father on the south side of the chapter-house of St. Werburgh's, Chester, now the cathedral.

    Hugh's liberality to the church was not so great as that of his predecessors. He granted some lands in Wirral to St. Werburgh's, and four charters of his, to Stanlaw, St. Mary's, Coventry, the nuns of Bullington and Greenfield, are printed by Ormerod (i. 27). He also confirmed his mother's grants to her foundation of Austin Canons at Calke, Derbyshire, and those of his father to his convent of the Benedictine nuns of St. Mary's, Chester (Monasticon, vi. 598, iv. 314). In 1171 he had confirmed the grants of Ranulf to the abbey of St. Stephen's in the diocese of Bayeux (Eyton, p. 158). More substantial were his grants of Bettesford Church to Trentham Priory, and of Combe in Gloucestershire to the abbey of Bordesley, Warwickshire (Monasticon, vi. 397, v. 407).

    Hugh married before 1171 Bertrada, the daughter of Simon III, surnamed the Bald, count of Evreux and Montfort. He was therefore brother-in-law to Simon of Montfort., the conqueror of the Albigenses, and uncle of the Earl of Leicester. His only legitimate son, Ranulf III, succeeded him as Earl of Chester [see Blundevill, Randulf de]. He also left four daughters by his wife, who became, on their brother's death, co-heiresses of the Chester earldom. They were: (1) Maud, who married David, earl of Huntingdon, and became the mother of John the Scot, earl of Chester from 1232 to 1237, on whose death the line of Hugh of Avranches became extinct; (2) Mabel, who married William of Albini, earl of Arundel (d. 1221); (3) Agnes, the wife of William, earl Ferrers of Derby; and (4) Hawise, who married Robert de Quincy, son of Saer de Quincy, earl of Winchester. Hugh was also the father of several bastards, including Pagan, lord of Milton; Roger; Amice, who married Ralph Mainwaring, justice of Chester; and another daughter who married R. Bacon, the founder of Roucester (Ormerod, i. 28). A great controversy was carried on between Sir Peter Leycester and Sir Thomas Mainwaring, Amice's reputed descendant, as to whether that lady was legitimate or not. Fifteen pamphlets and small treatises on the subject, published between 1673 and 1679, were reprinted in the publications of the Chetham Society, vols. lxxiii. lxxix. and lxxx. Mainwaring was the champion of her legitimacy, which Leycester had denied in his 'Historical Antiquities.' Dugdale believed that Amice was the daughter of a former wife of Hugh, of whose existence, however, there is no record. A fine seal of Earl Hugh's is engraved in Ormerod's 'Cheshire,' i. 32.

    [Benedictus Abbas and Roger de Hoveden (both ed. Stubbs in Rolls Ser.); Howlett's Chronicles of Stephen, Henry II, and Richard I (Rolls Ser.); Eyton's Itinerary of Hen. II; Ormerod's Cheshire, i. 26-32; Dugdale's Baronage, i. 40-1; Dugdale's Monasticon, ed. Ellis, Caley, and Bandinel; Doyle's Official Baronage, i. 364; Beamont's introduction to the Amicia Tracts, Chetham Soc.]

    [DNB, Editor, Sidney Lee, Macmillan Co., London & Smith, Elder & Co., NY, 1908, vol. x, pp. 164-5]

    Hugh married (Unknown first wife of Hugh of Chester). [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

  5. 15.  (Unknown first wife of Hugh of Chester)


    Or mistress. See the 17th-century controversy over her origins, discussed in the entry for their daughter Amicia.

    1. 7. Amicia de Meschines