|Sheriff of the County of Essex, Chief Justiciar of England and excommunicated by Thomas Becket in 1166 and 1169. |
The antiquarian William Dugdale states that in a Charter of 1166, Richard de Lucy (d. 14th July 1179), confirmed that his ancestors performed the service of Castle Guard at Dover. Richard de Lucy became the Lord Justiciary of England, the highest post of honour that could be held by a subject and in 1173 was constituted Lieutenant of England, in the King's absence.
In the 12th of Henry II reign (1166), "upon the aid then assessed for marrying the king's daughter, he certified his knights' fees (lying in the cos. of Kent, Suffolk, and Norfolk) de veteri feoffamento, to be in number seven, and that his ancestors performed the service of Castle Guard at Dover, for the same, as also that he held on knight's fee more, de nova feoffamento, in the co. Devon."
Various early nineteenth century texts, refer to Fulbert de Lucy or Lucie, Lord Chilham, who married Athelix (also spelt Adelit or Athelize); one of the eight knights who under the command of Sir John de Fiennes, built and maintained one of the eight towers erected as an additional defence at Dover Castle. His widow remarried in 1140.
Apparantly John de Fiennes acted as Constable at Dover for a very short period after the disgrace of Bishop Odo in 1084 - he apparantly died in 1085, but the responsibilities were taken on by his son and grandson, both named James from 1085 and 1111 respectively. We are told that John was the third son of Eustace of Boulogne and Alice of Silvesse.
Chilham or the later named Calderscot Tower at Dover Castle was built and maintained by Fulbert de Lucy, named after his estate at Chilham. He later styled himself Dover. The keep at Dover was reconstructed much later in 1180.
Fulbert de Lucie had two sons:-
(1) Hugh de Dover, who married Mathilde Peverel (also spelt Matilda or Maud) and died after 1168. Mathilde was the daughter of Payn Peverel, apparantly one of three illegitamate sons of William the Conquerer, by Ingelrica, the wife of one of the King's retainers, Ranulph de Peverell. Hugh was granted Chilham in 1140 but had no surviving offspring by Maud and his nephew, John, son of William de Dover became heir to the Chilham estate. He was Sherriff of Kent 1143-1146. This role was taken over by Richard de Lucy in 1148 after he was recalled to England from Falaise in 1140.
(2) William de Dover, who was alive in 1140, had three sons, John, William and Ralph. John married Roesia de Lucy, daughter of Geoffrey de Lucy and grand-daughter of Richard de Lucy. John was alive in 1140 and was the heir to his Uncle Hugh's estate of Chilham. He died after 1174 when he made claims for "Garcote" - possibly Charlecote and "Whittesage" in Warwickshire and Leicestershire. Charlecote came through the female line via Cecily de Lucy, around 1200 and her sons William and Simon styled themselves de Lucy. A deed by John de Dover in the Surrenden Library referring to the mill near St.Mildred's Church, Canterbury, given to him by his Uncle, Hugh de Dover was witnessed by Robert de Lucy.
John and Roesia's son was another Fulbert de Dover (or Robert of Dover) who was granted Chilham Castle in 1180. It had been rebuilt in 1171-74. Fulbert de Dover's seal is a Chequy a Luce hauriant (a single Luce over a chequered background). A reference to his Lucy connections.
From the 'History of Kent' by William Henry Ireland 1829..........
"Fulbert de Dover's Tower was erected by Fulbert de Lucie, who accompanied the Conquerer to England. Being appointed one of the knights to defend the fortress, by John de Fiennes, he assumed the name of Dover, and on his personal services being no longer required at the castle, retired to his baronial residence of Chilham: his successor, Hugh de Dover, his son, and Richard de Dover, a descendent of the latter, held the vast possessions of his progenitors: he ultimately retired to the abbey of Lesnes, which he had founded in 1179; and dying there, this famous name became extinct, when the estates passed, by the marriage of a female relative, to an illegitimate son of King John" NB: This history goes as far as stating that Richard de Dover (ie. Lucy) was the descendent of Hugh de Dover although further reading about this author may put some doubt on this, particularly as they were of similar age.
From the earlier 'History of Town and Port of Dover' by Rev. John Lyon 1814..........
The history states that Richard de Dover (Chief Justice) was probably interred with some of his ancestors at Lesnes, for on digging up the foundations of the chapel in the reign of King James, the workmen discovered a vault in which there were several coffins, richly ornamented, with the arms - Gules, three lucies hauriant, between eight cross crosslets, or.
In 1140 Hugh of Chilham granted the Church of Chilham to the Church of St. Bertin for his soul, and that of his father Fulbert de Dover, mother Adelit, his relations and that of Matilda his wife. In
Domesday, Fulbert is entered as holding Chilham of the Bishop of Bayeux. Similarly a Fulbert Latin is also recorded at this time, holding Litelai or Lesnes on behalf of Bishop Odo. On the Bishop's forfeiture and the creation of the Barony of Fobert, as one of the eight Lordships constituting the Constabulary of Dover Castle, the King granted Chilham, as part of that Barony, to Fulbert. This Barony consisted of 15 knight's fees of which Chilham furnished two. The Manor of Kingston was part of the lands given by the Conquerer to Fulbert de Dover, being held "in capite" by barony. In the 1600's this was sometimes known as the Barony of Fobert or Chilham.
The historian Sir Alfred Clapham in his 1915 History of Lesnes Abbey also agrees that Richard de Lucy's father was Robert de Lucy together with listing his wife as Rohese and Richard's brothers, Walter and Robert.
He cites that "from another charter it appears that this Robert was brother to Walter de Lucy, Abbot of Battle, who is known to have been brother to Richard, the founder of Lesnes; thus Robert de Lucy (the elder) was the father of all three brothers."
"A copy of the charter is preserved amongst the state papers of Henry VIII. He calls himself Robert, son of Robert de Lucy and continues: 'Be it known that I have given for the love of God and the good estate of my most dear lord Richard de Lucy and for the souls of my father and mother and of all the faithful, to the Abbey which the said lord Richard de Lucy founded at Westwood, in Lesnes, in honour of God and the blessed Thomas the Martyr" (ref: PRO vol. 4 no. 3587).
A charter for Henry I, from the summer of 1131, possibly at Dieppe records:-
"Ad dominium autem et proprium usum Sagiensis episcope damus et
confirmamus totumfeodem Alodii (Laleu, Orne) quem tenuit Guillelmus
Ghot, hoc est quicquid ipse habuit inter Sartam et Tancham tam in
terries quam in pratis et aquis et molendinis et silvis et hominibus
et telonesis et consuetudinibus et omnibus omnino rebus, sicut idem
Guillelmus quietus et liberius tenuit tempore patris mei; quem feodum
ego emi de nostra propria pecunia de Avelina nepte ipsius Guillelmi
et Ricardo de Luceio filio ipsius Aveline et de justis heredibus
predicti Alodii, et ipsi, Avelina scilicet et Ricardus, et iusti
heredes eiusdem feodi eum in manu Roberti filii nostri comitia
Glocestrie videntibus multis reddiderunt et postea coram me
vendicionem istam cognoverunr et confirmaverunt et eam quietam de se
et suis heredibus cesserunt."
This early record for Richard de Lucy (Ricardo de Luceio) infers that Aveline (mother of Richard de Lucy) was probably the grand-daughter (nepte) of William Ghot - not Goth, although this may be the same individual. The use of 'nepte' in early documents can also refer to a neice. This charter has been transcribed from the "Red Book of Seéz". It also notes that Aveline and Richard held unequal portions of this Laleu inheritance and therefore had to sell to the King as 'joint owners', for the benefit of Henry's illegitimate son Robert of Gloucester.
This document appears to pre-date, the February 1131, Rouen Charter for Séez Catherdral, recorded by Dugdale, which mentions a fief which Henry I bought from Richard de Lucy and his mother Aveline, the neice and heiress of William Goth.
The 'Complete Peerage', again referring to Dugdale also confirms that the family appeared to have taken their name from Lucé-sur-Orne, a commune in the department of Orné, a short distance south-east of Domfront, and in the Bailiwick of Passeis. In the return of the Norman fees of 1172 there occurs the following: "De Passeis . . . Ricards de Lucceio j militem et sibi xvij milites". Lucé lies geographically in Maine, and its real connection with Normandy dates from the occupation in 1092 of Domfront, the castle of Robert de Belleme, by Henry Beauclerc, the Count of the Cotentin. It seems probable that this particular connection between Henry I and the southern border of Normandy may have first brought the family to the King's notice.
Orderic's Chronicle and Dugdale confirm that on 1st October 1138, Richard de Lucy was Constable of Falaise in Normandy for King Stephen, and held it so stoutly against Geoffrey Earl of Anjou that he was rewarded with thirteen additional knight's fees in Essex, including the town of Grinstead. He fought on the King's side throughout his contest with the Empress Maud, and routed the forces of the latter in a pitched battle near Wallingford. Richard was in constant attendance on Stephen and witnessed 135 of his charters. He first witnessed King Stephen's charters in 1138. He was with Stephen at Oxford, Norwich and London in 1139-40 and at Lincoln in March 1140-February 1141. At Christmas 1141 he was in Canterbury. When the agreement between Stephen and Henry Duke of Normandy was entered upon in 1153, by which Henry was named as successor to the throne, "for the better securing of that Accord, the Tower of London, and Castle of Winchester, by the advice of the whole Clergy, were then given into the hands of this Richard de Lucie, he (by his solemn Oath) promising that upon the death of King Stephen he would faithfully deliver them to Henry; and for his more effectual performance of that Trust, gave up his own Son as a Hostage." (Dugdale). The new King, on his accession, rewarded and employed him. He had a grant of the whole hundred of Angre (Ongar) with other manors in Essex; although Richard had been a tenant in Essex to the Honour of Boulogne before 1152 and definately by 1153. Richard built his castle at Chipping Ongar, Essex between 1153-54. He was the sole witness to the coronation charter of Henry II in 1154 and during 1162 was appointed Lord Justiciary of England, the highest post of honour that could be held by a subject.
Richard de Lucy retained possessions in France and is recorded as Lord Gouviz and Baron Cretot and militarily responsible for the Baliwick of Passeis, near Domfrort, of which Lucé forms a part, in 1172. He originally held this with Gervase Paynell. Unfortunately the early history of the Lords of Gouviz is unknown, however a Ralf de Goviz is recorded in a foundation charter for the Abbey of Barbery in 1181. Gouvix is an arrondissement of Falaise, located just north of Falaise on the River Laise, where there still remains amongst gardens, the ruins of the lower walls of a castle on the banks of the river. According to Master Wace in his poem, William, the Sire of Gouviz was present at the Battle of Hastings. Robert de Gouviz (c1150-1200) held the arms on seals of vaire a bendlet (probably using squirrel fir). Despite the problems with the Battle Abbey Rolls, the surname Lucy does occur in several versions, recording those present at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. However no christian name is recorded and Fulbert de Lucy would probably have been born after 1066.
In the early 1100's, the Lord's of Mayenne surrendered the custody of their castles at Ambieres and Gorron and a Geoffrey de Goreham or Gorron (born in le Mans of a noble Normandy family), the Abbott of St. Albans (1119-1146), was summoned from Maine and is recorded as a kinsman of Robert de Lucy who he 'introduced to the royal circle'. Some sources record him as Geoffrey de Lucé. Walter de Lucy, brother to Richard de Lucy, originally a monk of Lonlay, lived for some time with Geoffrey de Gorham (again noted as a relative) prior to being appointed the Abbott of Battle Abbey (1139-1171). A nephew of Geoffrey, Robert de Goram (1151-1166) was a sacrist at St.Albans and there is evidence of the marriage of a Gorram to Cristina in the Thorney Abbey Annals. Geoffrey's remains were removed from the Chapter House at St.Albans Cathedral in 1978 and reburied in the choir of the Abbey Church. He had a brother William de Gorron of St. Berthevin-la-Tanniere, who married Matilda and had sons Giles, Ive, Robert (mentioned above) and Ralph, and a sister Olivia (who married Hugh, son of Humbald of Westwick, Hertfordshire.). St. Berthevin-la-Tanniere is located just west of Gorron.
There is also a record of a Geoffrey de Lucy (monk) mentioned at Savigny in 1137 (possibly a younger son). A group of monks from Savigny formed Jervaulx, Wensleydale in 1145 among other English settlements. A Ralph de Lucy is recorded in 1140-48 in a charter regarding Foucarmont. Their first Abbott came from Savigny when it was founded in 1130. Richard's brother, Walter de Lucy was initially a monk at Lonlay-l'Abbaye, which is only five and an half miles from Domfront. Another of Richard's brothers was Robert de Lucy of Chrishall and Elmdon, Essex.
On the 11th June 1178, Richard de Lucy founded the priory of Westwode (later known as Lesnes Abbey) in the diocese of Rochester, Kent in honour of St. Thomas, of Canterbury, the martyr, which he munificently endowed. In this priory he subsequently assumed the habit of a canon regular and departing this life soon after (14th July 1179), was buried there, possibly in the chapter-house.
There is also a reference to "Anselm de Lucy, who granted to the Church of St. Thomas the Martyr of Leanes, for the benefit of his soul and for the soul of Richard de Lucy, his father, and Richard de Montfichet, his son 40/- of rent out of its land at Thorney, by Stowmarket, Suffolk". Obviously this is a previously unrecorded son of Richard de Lucy (Justiciar). Geoffrey de Lucy, Constable of Berkhamsted was also a benefactor. On the death of Richard de Lucy the patronage of Lesnes was continued by Godfrey de Lucy, his son, who entered the Church and became Bishop of Winchester (1189-1204).
From other references, it is recorded that Emma de Lucy, granted to the Abbey a quit rent of 3s payable by Lesnes Abbey in respect of 12 acres held in Elmsdon (Essex); the money provided by herself and her brother Robert de Lucy and her lord Serlo de Marcia. This Emma was the daughter of Robert de Lucy, brother of Richard de Lucy. Besides the site, the founder granted to Lesnes Abbey the churches of Newington and Marden, and his brother Robert, the church of Emdon in Essex. His son Hubert had the lordship of Stanford, Essex and the hundred of Angre for his lively-hood, but died without issue.
On Richard de Lucy's tomb in Lesnes Abbey was written the following epitaph:-
"Rapitur in tenebras RICHARDUS lux Luciorum
Jufticie pacis dilector & vrbis honorum
CHRISTE fibi requies tecum fit fede piorum.
Julia tunc orbi lux bis feptena nitebat,
Mille annos C. nouem et feptuaginta mouebat:"
According to John Weever in his 1630 "Discourse on Funeral Monuments", he states that a Sir John Hippesley, the then owner of the Lesnes property, "appointed certaine workemen to digge amongst the rubbish of the decayed fabricke of the Church (which had laine a long time buried in her owne ruins, and growne over with oke, elme, and ashe-trees) for stones, and these happened upon a goodly funerall monument; the full proportion of a man, in his coate armour, his sword hanging at his side by a broad belt, upon which the flower-de-luce was engraven in many places: (being, as I take it, the rebus, or device, of the Lucies:) this, his (Sir Richard Lucie's) representation, or picture, lay upon a flat marble stone; that stone upon a trough, or coffin, of white smooth hewn asheler stone: in that coffin, and a sheet of lead, (both being made fit for the dimension of a dead body,) the remaines of an ashie drie carkasse lay enwrapped, whole, and undisjointed, and upon his head some haire, or a simile quiddam of haire, appeared; they likewise found other statues of men in like manner proportioned, as also of a woman in her attire and abiliments, with many grave-stones and bones of the deceased; to see all which, great confluence of people resorted, amongst which number I was not the hindmost."
William Stukeley (1687-1765) the antiquarian, surveyed the ruins of Lesnes Abbey in April 1753 and his plan illustrates the position of the church and cloisters, together with the location of the founders tomb in the north transept of the church.
In 1909, Sir Alfred Clapham excavated the buried remains of Lesnes Abbey again and within the Lady Chapel a stone effigy of a man in mixed mail and armour plate was found, representing a member of the de Lucy family from about 1320. This is now in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
There is some confusion in the early records regarding the final resting place of Richard de Lucy's wife Rohese. She was buried either at Holy Trinity Priory, Aldgate or in Faversham Abbey (both founded by Stephen and Matilda) or alternatively in the Crypt of Canterbury Cathedral.
|Last Modified 17 Feb 2009||Created 3 Jun 2012 using Reunion for Macintosh|