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Families on the Frontiers of the Old South

Richard III FitzAlan, 11th Earl of Arundel, KG

Richard III FitzAlan, 11th Earl of Arundel, KG[1, 2]

Male 1346 - 1397  (~ 51 years)

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  • Name Richard III FitzAlan 
    Arms of Arundel
    Arms of Arundel
    Suffix 11th Earl of Arundel, KG 
    Born ca. 1346  Arundel Castle, Arundel, Sussex Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Arundel Castle
    Arundel Castle
    Gender Male 
    Died 21 Sep 1397  Tower Hill, London, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    • Executed for treason by Richard II. Arundel was one of the "Lords Appellant," a triumvirate that had orchestrated the execution of five of the king's counselors in 1388. The king had his revenge after his depleted coffers were replenished with the dowry of his new bride, Isabel. [3]
    Tower Hill
    Tower Hill
    London
    Buried Church of the Augustine Friars, Bread Street, London, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • FITZALAN, RICHARD III, Earl of Arundel and Surrey (1346-1397), born in 1346, was the son of Richard II Fitzalan, earl of Arundel [q. v.], and his second wife, Eleanor, daughter of Henry, third earl of Lancaster. He served on the expedition to the Pays de Caux under Lancaster (Nicolas, Scrope and Grosvenor Roll, i. 220). In January 1376 he succeeded to his father's estates and titles. Though the petitions of the Good parliament contain complaints of the men of Surrey and Sussex against the illegal jurisdiction exercised by his novel 'shire-court' at Arundel over the rapes of Chichester and Arundel (Rot. Parl. ii. 348), he was appointed one of the standing council established in that parliament to restrain the dotage of Edward III (Chron. AngliŠ, 1328-1388, p. lxviii, Rolls Ser.) At Richard II's coronation he acted as chief butler (Rot. Parl. iii. 131). He was placed on the council of regency (ib. iii. 386), and in 1380 put on a commission to regulate the royal household. In 1377 he was appointed admiral of the west. His earlier naval exploits were but little glorious, yet French authorities credit him with the merit of having saved Southampton from their assault (Luce, Chronique des Quatre Premiers Valois, p. 263, ed. Soc. de l'Histoire de France). About Whitsuntide 1378 he attacked Harfleur, but was subsequently driven to sea (ib. p. 273). In the same year he and the Earl of Salisbury were defeated by a Spanish fleet, though they afterwards compelled Cherbourg to surrender (Walsingham, i. 371). He next accompanied John of Gaunt on his expedition to St. Malo, where his negligence on the watch gave the French an opportunity to destroy a mine and so compel the raising of the siege (Froissart, liv. ii. ch. xxxvi. ed. Buchon). Arundel barely escaped with his life (Chronique des Quatre Premiers Valois, p. 275). The earl showed an equal sluggishness in defending even his own tenants when the French ravaged the coasts of Sussex (Wals. i. 439; cf. Chron. AngliŠ, p. 168). In 1381 he and Michael de la Pole were approved in parliament as councillors in constant attendance upon the young king and as governors of his person (Wals. ii. 156; Rot. Parl. iii. 1046). In 1383 he was proposed as lieutenant of Bishop Spencer of Norwich's crusading army, but the bishop refused to accept him (ib. iii. 155 a). In 1385 he took part in the expedition to Scotland.

      Arundel definitely joined the baronial opposition that had now reformed under Gloucester, the king's uncle. He took a prominent part in the attack on the royal favourites in 1386, acted as one of the judges of M. de la Pole (Wals. ii. 152), and was put on the commission appointed in parliament to reform and govern the realm and the royal household (Rot. Parl. iii. 221). His appointment as admiral was now renewed with a wider commission, rendered necessary by the projected great invasion of England, which brought Charles VI to Sluys (Froissart, iii. 47; cf. Wallon, Rich. II, liv. v. ch. iii.) In the spring of 1387 he and Nottingham prepared an expedition against the French, which, on 24 March, defeated a great fleet of Flemish, French, and Spanish ships off Margate, and captured nearly a hundred vessels laden with wine (Wals. ii. 154-6; Monk of Evesham, p. 78; Froissart, iii. 53. The different accounts vary hopelessly; see Nicolas, Hist. of Royal Navy, ii. 317-24). This brilliant victory won Arundel an extraordinary popularity, which was largely increased by the liberality with which he refused to turn the rich booty to his own advantage. For the whole year wine was cheap in England and dear in Netherlands (Froissart, iii. 54). Immediately after he sailed to Brest and relieved and revictualled the town, which was still held for the English, and destroyed two forts erected by the French besiegers over against it (Knighton, c. 2692). He then returned in triumph to England, plundering the country round Sluys and capturing ships there on his way. All danger of French invasion was at an end.

      In 1387 Richard II obtained from the judges a declaration of the illegality of the commission of which Arundel was a member. His rash attempt to arrest the earl produced the final conflict. Northumberland was sent to seize Arundel at Reigate, but, fearing the number of his retainers, retired without accomplishing his mission (Monk of Evesham, p. 90). Warned of this treachery, Arundel escaped by night and joined Gloucester and Warwick at Harringhay, where they took arms (November 1387). At Waltham Cross on 15 Nov. they first appealed of treason the evil councillors of the king, and on 17 Nov. forced Richard to accept their charges at Westminster Hall. When the favourites attempted resistance, another meeting of the confederates was held on 12 Dec. at Huntingdon, where Arundel strongly urged the capture and deposition of the king. But the reluctance of the new associates, Derby and Nottingham, caused this violent plan to be rejected (Rot. Parl. iii. 376). But Arundel continued the fiercest of the king's enemies. In the parliament of February 1388 he was one of the five lords who solemnly renewed the appeal (ib. iii. 229; Knighton, cc. 2713-2726). He specially pressed for the execution of Burley, though Derby wished to save him, and for three hours the queen interceded on her knees for his life (Chronique de la Traison, p. 133).

      In May 1388 Arundel again went to sea, still acting as admiral, and now also as captain of Brest and lieutenant of the king in Brittany. Failing to do anything great in that country, he sailed southward, conquered OlÚron and other small islands off the coast, and finally landed off La Rochelle, and took thence great pillage (Froissart, iii. 112, 113, 129). Next year, however, he was superseded as admiral by Huntingdon (Knighton, c. 2735), and in May was, with the other lords appellant, removed from the council. He was, however, restored in December, when Richard and his old masters finally came to terms (Nicolas, Proceedings of Privy Council, i. 17).

      For the next few years peace prevailed at home and abroad. The party of the appellants began to show signs of breaking up, though Arundel still remained faithful to his old policy. In 1392 he was fined four hundred marks for marrying Philippa, daughter of the Earl of March and widow of John Hastings, earl of Pembroke (Rot. Pat. 15 Rich. II, in Dallaway's Western Sussex, II. i. 134, new edit.) A personal quarrel of Arundel with John of Gaunt marks the beginning of the catastrophe of Richard II's reign. The new Countess of Arundel was rude to Catharine Swynford (Froissart, iv. 50). Henry Beaufort [see Beaufort, Henry, bishop of Winchester], if report were true, seduced Alice, Arundel's daughter (Powel, Hist. of Cambria, p. 138, from a pedigree of the Stradlings, whose then representative married the daughter born of the connection; cf. Clark, Limbus Patrum MorganiŠ et GlanmorganiŠ, p. 435). In 1393, when Arundel was residing at his castle of Holt, a revolt against John of Gaunt broke out in Cheshire, and Arundel showed such inactivity in assisting in the restoration of peace that the duke publicly accused him in parliament of conniving at the rising (Wals. ii. 214 ; Ann. Ric. II, ed. Riley, p. 161). Arundel answered by a long series of complaints against Lancaster (Rot. Parl. iii. 313). Some of these so nearly touched the king as to make him very angry, and Arundel was compelled to apologise for what he had said. The actual English words that he uttered in his recantation are preserved in the Rolls of Parliament. A short retirement from court now seems to have ensued (Ann. Ric. II, p. 166), but Arundel soon returned, only to give Richard fresh offence by coming late to the queen's funeral and yet asking leave to retire at once from the ceremony (ib. p. 169; Wals. ii. 215). The king struck Arundel with a cane with such force as to shed blood and therefore to pollute the precincts of Westminster Abbey. On 3 Aug. Arundel was sent to the Tower (F?dera, vii. 784), but was released on 10 Aug. (ib. vii. 785), when he re-entered the council. The appointment of his brother Thomas as archbishop of Canterbury may mark the final reconciliation.

      After the stormy parliament of February 1397, Arundel and Gloucester withdrew from court, after reproaching the king with the loss of Brest and Cherbourg. It was probably after this, if ever, that Arundel entertained Gloucester, Warwick, and his brother the archbishop at Arundel Castle, when they entered into a solemn conspiracy against Richard (Chronique de la Traison, pp. 5-6, though the date there given, 23 July 1396, must be wrong, and 28 July 1397, the editor's conjecture, is too late, one manuscript says 8 Feb. ; Chronique du Religieux de Saint-Denys, ii. 476-8, in Collection de Documents InÚdits, cf. Froissart, iv. 56. The statement is in no English authority, and has been much questioned, cf. Wallpn, ii. 161, 452). Nottingham, who, though Arundel's son-in-law and one of the appellants, had now deserted his old party, informed Richard of the plot. The king invited the three chief conspirators to a banquet on 10 July (Ann. Ric. II, p. 201). From this Arundel absented himself without so much as an excuse, but the arrest of Warwick, who ventured to attend, was his justification. He was, however, in a hopeless position. His brother pressed him to surrender, and persuaded him that the king had given satisfactory promises of his safety (ib. 202-3 ; Wals. ii. 223). He left accordingly his stronghold at Reigate, and accompanied the archbishop to the palace. Richard at once handed him over into custody, while Thomas returned sorrowfully to Lambeth (Eulog. Hist. iii. 371). This was on 15 July. Arundel was hurried off to Carisbrooke and thence after an interval removed to the Tower. On 17 Sept. a royalist parliament assembled. The pardons of the appellants were revoked (Rot. Parl. iii. 350, 351). On 20 Sept. Archbishop Arundel was impeached. Next day the new appellants laid their charges against the Earl of Arundel before the lords. He was brought before them, arrayed in scarlet. With much passion he protested that he was no traitor, and that the charges against him were barred by the pardons he had received. A long and angry altercation broke out between him and John of Gaunt and Henry of Derby, his old associate. He refused to answer the charges, denounced his accusers as liars, and when the speaker declared that the pardon on which he relied had been revoked by the faithful commons, exclaimed, 'The faithful commons are not here' (Monk of Evesham, pp. 136-8; Rot. Parl. iii. 377; Ann. Ric. pp. 214-19). He was, of course, condemned, though Richard commuted the barbarous penalty of treason into simple decapitation. The execution immediately followed. He was hurried through the streets of London to Tower Hill, amidst the lamentations of a sympathising multitude. Brutally illtreated by the bands of Cheshiremen who had been collected to overawe the Londoners, he displayed extraordinary firmness and resolution, 'no more shrinking or changing colour than if he were going to a banquet' (Wals. ii. 225-6; cf. Religieux de Saint-Denys, ii. 552). He rebuked with much dignity his treacherous kinsfolk (Nottingham was not present, though Walsingham and Froissart, iv. 61, say that he was), and exhorted the hangman to sharpen well his axe. Slain by a single stroke, he was buried in the church of the Augustinian friars. The people reverenced him as a martyr, and went on pilgrimage to his tomb. At last Richard, conscience-stricken though he was at his death, avoided a great political danger by ordering all traces of the place of his burial to be removed. But after the fall of Richard the pilgrimages were renewed, and the next generation did not doubt that his merits had won for him a place in the company of the saints (Adam of Usk:, p. 14, ed. Thompson). Arundel was very religious and a bountiful patron of the church. So early as 1380 he was admitted into the brotherhood of the abbey of Tichfield. In the same year he founded the hospital of the Holy Trinity at Arundel for a warden and twenty poor men (Dugdale, Monasticon, ed. Caley, &c. vi. 736-7). Between 1380 and 1387 he enlarged the chantry projected by his father into the college of the Holy Trinity, also at Arundel. This establishment now included a master and twelve secular canons, and superseded the confiscated alien priory of St. Nicholas (ib. vi. 1377-1379; Tierney, Arundel, pp. 594-613). In his will he left liberal legacies to several churches.

      By his first wife, Elizabeth (d. 1385), daughter of William de Bohun, earl of Northampton, Arundel had three sons and four daughters. The second son, Thomas [see Fitzalan, Thomas], ultimately became earl of Arundel. Of his daughter Elizabeth's four husbands, the second was Thomas Mowbray, earl of Nottingham [q. v.] Another daughter, Joan, married William, lord Bergavenny. A third, Alice, married John, lord Charlton of Powys. By Philippa Mortimer Arundel had no children.

      [Walsingham's Chronicle of Richard II, ed. Riley; Eulogium Historiarum; Wright's Political Poems and Songs; Chronicon AngliŠ, 1328-1388 (all in Rolls Series); Chronique de la Traison et Mort de Richard (Engl. Hist. Soc.); French Metrical History of the Deposition of Richard II, in ArchŠologia, vol. xx.; Monk of Evesham's Hist. Rich. II, ed. Hearne, 1729; Knighton in. Twysden, Decem Scriptores; Chronique du Religieux de Saint-Denys, vol. i. (Documents InÚdits sur l'Histoire de France); Froissart, vols. iii. and iv. ed. Buchon, is often wrong in details; Rolls of Parliament, vols. ii. and iii.; Rymer's F?dera, vol. vii.; Dugdale's Baronage, i. 318-320; Doyle's Official Baronage, i. 73-4; Sir N. H. Nicolas's History of the Royal Navy, vol. ii.; Wallon's Richard II, with good notes on the authorities, is, with Stubbs's Constitutional History of England, vol. ii., the fullest modern account; Dallaway's Western Sussex, n. i. 130-7, new edit.; Tierney's History of Arundel, pp. 240-276; Nichols's Collection of Royal Wills, pp. 120-143, contains in full Arundel's long and curious testament, written in French and dated 1392; it is taken from the Register of Archbishop Arundel.]

      T. F. T.
      [5]
    Person ID I10997  Dickinson
    Last Modified 6 Feb 2017 

    Father Richard II FitzAlan, KG, 10th Earl of Arundel,   b. 1306, Arundel Castle, Arundel, Sussex Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 24 Jan 1376, Arundel Castle, Arundel, Sussex Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 70 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Mother Eleanor of Lancaster,   b. Abt 1318,   d. 11 Jan 1372, Arundel Castle, Arundel, Sussex Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 54 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Married 5 Feb 1345  Ditton Church, Stoke Puges, Buckinghamshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [6
    Family ID F3071  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Elizabeth de Bohun, Countess of Arundel and Surrey,   b. Abt 1350,   d. 3 Apr 1385  (Age ~ 35 years) 
    Children 
    +1. Alice FitzAlan  [Birth]
    +2. Elizabeth FitzAlan of Arundel, Duchess of Norfolk,   b. Abt 1374, Derbyshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 8 Jul 1425  (Age ~ 51 years)  [Birth]
    Last Modified 3 Aug 2014 
    Family ID F3070  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Philippa Mortimer,   b. 21 Nov 1375, Ludlow Castle, Ludlow, Shropshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 24 Sep 1401, Halnaker, Sussex Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 25 years) 
    Married 15 Aug 1390 
    Last Modified 5 Feb 2017 
    Family ID F5496  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - ca. 1346 - Arundel Castle, Arundel, Sussex Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 21 Sep 1397 - Tower Hill, London, England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - Church of the Augustine Friars, Bread Street, London, England Link to Google Earth
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  • Histories
    Order of the Garter
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    "The Order of the Garter is the most senior and the oldest British Order of Chivalry and was founded by Edward III in 1348." The official website of the British Monarchy.

  • Sources 
    1. [S336429] Britain's Royal Families: A Complete Genealogy, Alison Weir, (London: Vintage Books, 2008), 78.

    2. [S336463] Medieval Lands: A prosopography of medieval European noble and royal families, Charles Cawley, (The Foundation for Medieval Genealogy), http://fmg.ac/Projects/MedLands/., "RICHARD (1346-beheaded Cheapside 21 Sep 1397, bur Church of the Augustine Friars, Bread Street, London)" at <http://bit.ly/2ldjiRD>.

    3. [S156] A Great and Glorious Adventure: A History of the Hundred Years War and the Birth of Renaissance England , Gordon Corrigan, (New York: Pegasus Books, 2014), 190.

    4. [S23] The Plantagenets: The Warrior Kings and Queens Who Made England, Dan Jones, (New York: Viking, 2012), 480.

    5. [S336351] Dictionary of National Biography, 63 volumes, Sir Sidney Lee, ed., (New York: McMillan and Company, 1885-1900), Public Domain., vol. 19, 98-100 [Thomas Frederick Tout].

    6. [S336352] The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, George Edward Cokayne , vol. 2, 60.