Simon I de Montfort appears for the first time with has parents and brother in the foundation charter of Saint-Thomas d'Épernon in 1052×3 ["... ego Amalricus miles sollicitatus, ..., voluntate et assensu auctoritatis mee conjugis nomine Bertredis, nec non et filiorum meorum Simonis videlicet atque Mainerii, ... S. Ainrici regis. S. Amalrici. S. Simonis, filii ejus. S. Mainerii, filii ejus. ..." Cart. S.-Thomas d'Épernon, 1-4 (#1)]. He first appears on his own in a charter of Henri I in 1058, although his father (who last appears in 1060) was still then living ["Sig. Simonis de Monteforti." RHF 11: 599 (#30)]. In 1072, after 23 May, king Philippe I confirmed the donation by Simon of the churches of Saint-Pierre de Montfort and Saint-Laurent de Montfort to the church of Saint-Magloire de Paris, also witnessed by Simon's son (the elder) Amaury ["... quidam miles de castro qui Monsfortis vocatur, Symon nomine ... S. Symonis de castro Montisfortis ... S. Amalrici, Symonis filii ..." Rec. acts Philippe I, 163-5 (#62)]. He also witnessed acts of Philippe I on 29 May 1067 ["Symon de Monte forti" ibid., 94 (#30)], 2 November 1071 ["S. Simonis de Monteforti" ibid., 160 (#60)], 21 May 1073 ["S. Simonis de Monteforti" ibid., 168 (#63)], and in 1078 ["Symon de Monteforti" ibid., 237 (#92)]. He appears to have died soon after William the Conqueror (see below), and was followed in succession by four of his sons [see Moriarty-Loyd-White].
Date of Birth: Unknown.
Place of Birth: Unknown.
Date of Death: In or soon after 1087.
Orderic Vitalis includes Simon in a list of individuals who died very soon after William the Conqueror ["Simon de Monteforti, gener Ricardi comitis Ebroicensium, ... aliique illustres viri obierunt." OV viii, 1 (3: 258-261].
Place of Death: Unknown.
Place of Burial: Saint-Thomas d'Épernon.
["[Ricardus de Monteforti] ... et Asparlone in cimiterio sancti Thomæ apostoli sepultum est. ... ibique senior Simon, Amalrici filius, et filii ejus tumulati sunt." OV viii, 14 (3: 347)]
Father: Amaury I de Montfort, fl. 1022 - 1060.
Mother: Bertrade, fl. 1052×3, probably a sister of Geoffroy de Gometz.
Robert de Torigny, in his additions to Gesta Normannorum Ducum, gives Simon's marriage to the [unnamed] heiress of Évreux, and states that there were two previous wives ["Ricardus autem comes ex relicta Rogerii de Toenio, ... genuit predictum Willelmum qui ei successit et unam filiam, que nupsit Symoni de Monteforti, ex qua natus est Amalricus et Berta soror eius. Sed ante eam idem Simon habuerat duas uxores. Ex quarum prima filius eius primogenitus, alter uidelicet Amalricus, natus est et Elisabel soror eius." GND (Rob. Tor.) viii, 17 (2: 232-5)]. Only the first of these wives is known from other records.
(1) Isabelle, daughter of Hugues Bardoul, lord of
Broyes, Beaumont, Pithiviers, and Nogent-le-Roi.
The editors of The Complete Peerage, in their account of this family, hint that there is some uncertainty about the identity of this first wife ["His 1st wife is said to have been Isabel, da. of Hugh Bardoul, ..." Moriarty-Loyd-White, 710]. However, the parentage of this wife (if not her name) is clearly documented by a charter of her son Amaury dated 1 February 1083, which identifies Hugues Bardoul as his grandfather ["Ego Amalricus, filius Simonis de Monteforti, ... Hanc vero ecclesiam, ... donavit Hugo Bardulfus predictis fratribus; post mortem vero Bardulfi, ubi honor illius ad patrum meum, ... adiit, ... Ego autem Amalricus, ubi ad viriles annos deveni et pater meus mihi honorem avi mei Hugonis tradidit. ..." Rhein (1910), 299 (Pièces justificatives #2)]. Other sources confirm this by clearly indicating that Simon de Montfort was a hereditary successor of Hugues Bardould, without specifying the exact relationship, for example an undated charter of Simon ["Ego Simon de Monteforti ... antecessores mei ... Hugo videlicet Bardulfus atque ejus filii, ... Igitur, post obitum supradicti Bardulfi, cum Novigenti honos ditionisque potestas mihi jure hereditario successerat, ..." Rhein (1910), 297-8 (Pièces justificatives #1)], and an item from the cartulary of Coulombs ["... Hugo Bardulfus, Castri Novigenti post ipsos existens dominus, aliique eorum successores, videliciet, Simon de Montfort et Radulfus junior de Thoenio ..." Devaux (1886): 123, citing Bibl. nat. Ms. latin, 17048, p. 431]. This wife's name is given as Isabelle in an undated donation by Simon de Montfort to the abbey of Coulombs of the tithe of the market of Nogent, given with the consent of his wife Isabelle and son Amaury [Rhein (1910), 125 (Catalogue des actes #3, citing Bibl. nat. Ms. latin, 17048, p. 437)].
[GND (Rob. Tor.) viii, 17 (2: 232-5), which states that there were two wives before Agnes (see above)]
(3) Agnès, daughter of Richard, count of Évreux.
Robert de Torigny makes her a daughter of count Richard by the widow of Roger de Tosny [GND (Rob. Tor.) viii, 17 (2: 232-5), see above]. Orderic Vitalis gives her name as Agnes, and makes her a daughter of Richard, count of Évreux and a uterine sister of Ralph de Tosny ["Hoc sæpedictus Radulfus ... . Agnetem uterinam sororem suam, Ricardi Ebroicensium comitis filiam, noctu surripuit, et Simoni de Monteforti in matrimonium dedit. Ipse quoque pro recompensatione filiam ejusdem Simonis, nomine Isabel, uxorem accepit; ..." OV v, 13 (2: 403-4); OV xi, 37 (4: 294), see below under Bertrade; OV xii, 1 (4: 313-4), see below under Amaury III].
by the daughter of
Robert de Torigny gives the elder Amaury and Isabelle ("Elisabel") as the children by the unnamed first wife [GND (Rob. Tor.) viii, 17 (2: 232-5)]
Amaury (II) "le Fort",
d.s.p. ca. 1089, lord of Montfort l'Amaury, ca. 1087-ca. 1089.
A charter of Amaury dated 1 February 1083 identifies Simon de Montfort as his father and Hugues Bardoul as his grandfather [Rhein (1910), 299 (Pièces justificatives #2), see above]. Amaury was killed in about 1089, and was succeeded by his brother Richard ["Anno secundo posquam rex Guillelmus obiit, ... Almaricus de Monteforti, qui Fortis cognominabatur, ... ab uno eorum lancea in latere percussus est, ipsoque die mortuus est. Quo defuncto, Ricardus frater ejus patrium honorem adeptus est, ..." OV viii, 12 (3: 332-3)].
m. Ralph de Tosny, d. 24 March, probably 1102.
Orderic Vitalis states that this marriage occurred in exchange for marriage of Simon to Ralph's uterine sister Agnes d'Évreux. [OV v, 13 (2: 403-4), see above]. [See also the page of Ralph's mother Godehilde.]
by Agnes of Évreux:
Richard, d. ca. 1092, lord of Montfort
l'Amaury, ca. 1089-ca. 1092.
Orderic Vitalis states that Richard succeeded his brother Amaury ["Quo defuncto, Ricardus frater ejus patrium honorem adeptus est, ..." OV viii, 12 (3: 333), see above], and that Richard was nepos through a sister of count Guillaume (of Évreux), the latter verifying that he was a son of Agnes (which also seems likely on onomastic grounds) ["Duo nepotes ejus [i.e., of Guillaume, count of Évreux], viri potentes, Guillelmus de Bretolio et Ricardus de Monteforti, ... Ibi Ricardus de Monteforti, dum coenobialem curiam Beati Petri Castellionis invaderet, nec pro reverentia monachorum, qui cum fletibus vociferantes Dominum interpellabant, ab incoeptus desisteret, hostili telo repente percussus est, ipsoque die cum maximo luctu utriusque partis mortuus est. Germanus enim frater erat Isabel, et ex sorore nepos Guillelmi comitis. ... Cadaver autem prædicti militis ad natale solum a suis translatum est, et Asparlone in cimiterio sancti Thomæapostoli sepultum est." OV viii, 14 (3: 346-7)].
Simon II juvenis,
living ca.1101, lord of Montfort l'Amaury, ca. 1092 - aft. ca.
Simon succeeded his brother Richard as lord of Montfort ["Simon juvenis de Monteforti, qui Ricardo fratri suo in honore successerat, ..." OV xi, 35 (4: 286)]. This would appear to nake him younger than Richard, which would place him as a child of the third marriage. In 1098, Simon successfully defended Montfort and Épernon against king William II Rufus of England and his own brother Amaury ["Guillelmus rex, cum Guillelmo duce Pictavensium, ductu Amalrici juvenis et Nivardi de Septoculo, contra Montemfortem et Sparlonem maximam multitudinem duxit, circumjacentum provinciam devastavit. Sed Simon juvenis munitiones suas, auxiliante Deo, illæsas servavit." OV x, 5 (4: 25-6)]. He was still alive about 1101, when he took part in the siege of Montmorency by the future Louis VI [OV xi, 35 (4: 286)]. He was apparently succeeded by his brother Amaury III at an uncertain date.
Amaury III, d. 18 or 19 April, after
1136; count of Évreux, 1118-; lord of Montfort l'Amaury;
m. (1) Richilde, daughter of Baldwin II, count of Hainaut;
m. (2) A[gnes], niece of Étienne de Garlande.
In 1098, Amaury aided king William II Rufus in his attack against Montfort and Épernon, which were defended by Amaury's brother Simon [OV x, 5 (4: 25-6), see above]. He had probably already succeeded his brother Simon as lord of Montfort by 1118, when he became count of Évreux in succession to his uncle Guillaume ["Amalricus enim de Monteforti, Simonis et Agnetis filius, ex sorore nepos Guillelmi comitis, Ebroicensem comitatum expetiit, ..." OV xii, 1 (4: 313-4)]. Amaury appears to have been living in September 1136 ["Rodbertus enim de Novo Burgo, ... per Amalricum comitem jam dudum amicitia et familiaritate inhæserat." OV xiii, 26 (5: 68)]. Rhein states that he died in 1137, and was buried in the abbey of Haute-Bruyère, where the anniversary was celebrated on 19 April ["XIII Kal. maii" Rhein (1910), 57, citing Bibl. nat., MS fr. 20293; "XIIII kal. marcii, Obit. Sens, 2: 224]. It was also celebrated on 19 April at Saint-Père-en-Vallée ["XIII kal. [Maii] Amauricus, princeps de Monteforti", ibid. 2: 187]. His death was celebrated on 18 April at Saint-Magloire ["XIIII cal. maii. Amalricus comes" Obit. Sens 1.1: 390] and Saint-Lazare [Rhein (1910), 57, citing Bibl. nat. MS lat. 5480, 2: 149], and on 27 April at Saint-Martin-des-Champs ["V kal. ... Amalricus miles de Monteforti" Obit. Sens 1.1: 435]. Giselbert of Mons states that Richilde de Hainaut, second daughter of count Baldwin II, was married to the [unnamed] count of Montfort in France, that he repudiated her, and that she afterward took the veil at Maubeuge ["Sepedicto Balduino comiti Hanoniensi, Balduini comitis Flandrie et Hanonie et Richeldis comitisse filio, ... Filie autem fuerunt tres, ... alia vero Richeldis nomine comiti Montisfortis in Francia, que a viro relicta, postea in Melbodiensi ecclesia sanctimonialis diu et honorifice vixit; ..." Giselbert, Chronicon Hanoniense, MGH SS 21: 505]. Orderic Vitalis indicates that Amaury III was still married to his wife Richilde in about 1118 ["Unde monachi Amalricum comitem, Montis-Fortis Dominum, adierunt, ... et ipse omnia superius memorata concessit eis coram Richelde Amalrici uxore." OV v, 19 (2: 452-3)]. It seems reasonable to assume that this was the same Richilde. As is discussed on the page of Amaury I, there seems to be no real evidence that consanguinity was the reason for the repudiation. His second wife, said to have been named Agnès, was a niece of Étienne de Garlande ["[Stephanus Cancellarius] ... Tradita vero nepti sua in conjugio Amalrico de Monte-forti cum honore de Rupe-forti, qui puellæ de matrimonio obvenerat ..." Chron. Mauriniacensi, RHF 12: 76-7; see Moriarty-Loyd-White, 714, for "A" as her initial].
m. (1) Foulques (Fulk) IV, count of Anjou;
m. (2) Philip I, king of France.
[GND viii, 17 (vol. 2, pp. 232-5), see above; "Rodbertus autem archiepiscopus et comes, frater Ricardi ducis, genuit Ricardum comitem Ebroicensium, et Ricardus Agnetam Simonis uxorem, quæ peperit Bertradam Fulconis genetricem, ..." OV xi, 37 (4: 294); "Fulco comes dixit duci Roberto: '... Amo Bertradam, sobolem Simonis de Monteforti, neptem scilicet Ebroicensis comitis Guillermi, quam Helvissa comitissa nutrit, et sua sub tutela custodit. Hanc mihi conjugem trade, obsecro; ...' " OV viii, 10 (3: 320-1)]
Guillaume, d. 27 August 1101, bishop
of Paris, 1095-1101.
Guillaume appears as a witness in a charter of Saint-Père de Chartres on 4 March 1093 ["Willelmus, filius Symonis de Monteforti" Cart. S.-Père de Chartres, 2: 310 (#58)]. That this Guillaume was the same person as the later bishop of Paris is confirmed by a 1096 letter from Yves, bishop of Chartres, Guillaume, bishop of Paris, and Gautier, bishop of Meaux, to Hugues, archbishop of Lyons, which refers to "queen" Bertrade as Guillaume's sister ["Non elegimus nobis in episcopum Willelmum propter munus acceptum vel promissum ab aliquo, vel gratia contubernii quod habebat soror ejus cum Rege, vel propter minas nobis illatas a Rege vel prædicta ejus sorore." Yves de Chartres, Letter #54, RHF 15: 88-9 (#29); here contubernium is to be translated "concubinage", making it clear that Guillaume's unnamed sister is Bertrade]. [See also Moriarty-Loyd-White 711, note (e), and sources cited there.]
The Montfort-Crispin Connection
That there was some genealogical connection ca. 1100 between the lords of Montfort l'Amaury and the Norman Crispin family is apparent for reasons which will be given below. Although it has generally been assumed that the Monfort connection came through Ève, wife of William Crispin I, who is usually assigned as either a sister or daughter of Simon, the alternative suggested here will be that the connection was one generation later on the Crispin side:
Conjectured sister or daughter of Simon: Ève, m. William Crispin I.
[Moriarty-Loyd-White, 708, note (j) (sister); Anselme 6: 73 (daughter by first wife); Rhein (1910), 32 (unnamed, daughter perhaps by first wife)] As noted below, the suggestion that she was a daughter of Simon is chronologically improbable.
Alternative proposed here:
Conjectured daughter: Agnès, m. William Crispin II.
The main members of the Crispin family who are of interest to us here are three consecutive generations of William Crispins. William Crispin I was one of William the Conqueror's captains in Normandy in 1054 ["Duces ejus, ... Willelmus Crispinus, ..." Wm. Malmes., Gesta Regum, c. 233 (2: 290)]. By his wife Ève, he was the father of (among others) William Crispin II, father by his wife Agnès of William Crispin III. There does not seem to be complete agreement on the chronology of these William Crispins. For example, in his genealogical table of the Crispins, Daniel Power states that William Crispin II died about 1100, and he places the floruit of William Crispin III as 1105-35 [Power (2004), 495]. On the other hand, Jean-Noël Mathieu states that William Crispin II was captured with duke Robert Curthose of Normandy at the Battle of Tinchebray in 1106 [Mathieu (1996), 19], and Guéry would have William Crispin II living until about 1130 [Guéry (1901), 22]. These three generations of William Crispins are documented by a charter of Joscelin Crispin (son of William Crispin III) in 1155 ["... ex dono primi Guillelmi Crispini, ... Ex dono Evae, uxoris ipsius, ... Ex dono Guillelmi Crispini secundi, filii dicti Guilelmi et Evae, ... Ex dono Agnetis uxoris ejusdem Guillelmi, ... Ex dono Guillelmi Crispini tertii, filii dicti Guillelmi secundi et Agnetis, ..." Porée (1901), 1: 656-7 (App. VI)] Much information on the Crispins also appears in the short work entitled Miraculum quo B. Maria subvenit Guillelmo Crispino Seniori - ubi de nobili Crispinorum genere agitur [PL 150: 735-744; excerpts in RHF 14: 268-270]. This source also states that William Crispin I was married to Ève, mentions their son Gilbert, abbot of Westminster, and states that Ève was "de gente Francorum, claris natalibus progenita" ["Iste Willelmus Crispinus habuit uxorem, nomine Evam, genere et moribus sibi competentem, de qua genuit Gislebertum, prædictum West Monasterii abbatem, et alios plures. Hæc Eva de gente Francorum, claris natalibus progenita, ..." ibid., 741], and agrees in making William Crispin III a grandson of William Crispin I and Ève via William Crispin II ["Horum nepos de filio Willelmo tertius Willelmus Crispinus, ..." ibid., 742].
The following two items are the main pieces of evidence that there was a genealogical connection between the Crispins and the Montforts.
These sources clearly suggest that William Crispin III was a descendant of the Montforts, but what was the exact link? The most common link suggested is that the wife of William Crispin I was a daughter of Simon I de Montfort [Anselme 6: 73, giving her name as Ève; Rhein (1910), 32, no name given]. As is pointed out by The Complete Peerage, Ève's son Gilbert Crispin, abbot of Westminster, was born about 1045, so if relationship comes through Ève, chronology almost certainly rules out the possibility that she was a daughter of Simon I de Montfort, and she would have to be a sister instead [Moriarty-Loyd-White, 708, note (a)]. In support of Ève as the connection, The Complete Peerage points out that she is called "de gente Francorum, claris natalibus progenita" (see above) [ibid.]. However, this not not specifically support a Montfort connection for Ève. Moreover, if she were a daughter of Simon's father Amaury I de Montfort, then that would make William Crispin III only a first cousin once-removed of Amaury III de Montfort. While the word nepos is occasionally applied to a person that distantly related, it usually means either "grandson" or "nephew", more often the latter.
Thus, the possibility that Orderic's nepos had its most common meaning of "nephew" should at least be considered. If true, this would make William Crispin III's mother Agnès a daughter of Simon I de Montfort. Although no conclusive proof regarding the parentage of Agnès seems to have been found, there have been conjectures about her parentage. Without mentioning any evidence, Porée and Guéry (among many others) state that she was a daughter of Godefroy d'Étrepagny [Porée (1901), 1: 195 n. 2; Guéry (1901), 21], and Prevost states that she was heiress of Étrepagny [OV 4: 452 n. 1]. However, this appears to be an effort to explain the family's connections to Étrepagny, which is probably unnecessary, since these connections seem to go back to William Crispin I [Mathieu (1996), 19-20 n. 19]. In a recent long paper on the counts of Dammartin, Mathieu states that William Crispin II's wife Agnès was "very probably" the same person as Agnès, granddaughter of Manassès (d. 1037), count of Dammartin, through the latter's daughter Eustachie [Mathieu (1996), 19-20]. In the early years of the twelfth century, the latter Agnès (Aweten) gave a donation to the priory of Rosny-sur-Seine, belonging to the abbey of Saint-Wandrille, for the soul of the husband Guillaume and another for her mother Eustachie [Mathieu (1996), 19 n. 18]. There does not seem to be any direct evidence that this husband Guillaume was the same person as William Crispin II, but in addition to the coincidence of a Guillaume marrying an Agnès, there is the onomastic clue that William Crispin II had a son named Manassès [Mathieu (1996), 19-20 n. 19].
Thus, if Mathieu's conjecture is wrong, then making Agnès a daughter of Simon I de Montfort would seem to be the simplest way to explain how William Crispin III was a nepos of Amaury III. Even if Mathieu's theory is correct, we could note that the identity of Eustachie's husband is unknown, and that Simon had a second wife whose identity is also unknown. Could Eustachie have been Simon's second wife? Although that possibility should not be accepted without further evidence, it seems difficult to rule out.
Other possible connections
Supposed relative: Simon senex,
Simon senex, mentioned by Orderic Vitalis immediately after Simon II "juvenis" in events of 1098, has sometimes been regarded as a Montfort ["Sed Simon juvenis munitions suas, auxiliante Deo, Illæsas servavit. Simon vero senex servavit Neelfiam; ..." OV x, 5 (4: 26)]. It is not clear how he could be fit into the pedigree, unless it was as a more distant relation [see Moriarty-Loyd-White, 712, note (k)].
Anselme = Père Anselme, Histoire généalogique et chronologique de la maison royale de France, 9 vols. (Paris, 1726-33).
Cart. S.-Père de Chartres = Benjamin Guérard, Cartulaire de l'Abbaye de Saint-Père de Chartres, 2 vols. (Paris, 1840).
Cart. S.-Thomas d'Épernon = Auguste Moutié & Adolphe de Dion, Cartulaires de Saint-Thomas d'Épernon et de Notre-Dame de Maintenon (Rambouillet, 1878).
CP = The Complete Peerage.
Devaux (1886) = J. Devaux, "Essai sur les premiers seigneurs de Pithiviers" (parts III, IV), Annales de la Société Historique & Archéologique du Gâtinais 4 (1886): 94-129.
Gislebert. Chron. Hanon. = Wilhelmus Arndt, ed., Gisleberti Chronicon Hanoniense, MGH SS 21: 481-601.
GND = Guillaume de Jumièges, Gesta Normannorum Ducum, as edited in Elisabeth van Houts, ed. & trans., The Gesta Normannorum Ducum of William of Jumièges, Orderic Vitalis and Robert of Torigni, 2 vols., (Oxford, 1992). Citation is by book and chapter of Guillaume's work, with the volume and page number of the edition by van Houts in parentheses. Unless otherwise stated, references are to Guillaume's work, and not to later additions by such authors as Orderic Vitalis and Robert de Torigny.
GND (Orderic) = Additions to GND by Orderic Vitalis.
GND (Rob. Tor.) = Additions to GND by Robert de Torigny.
Guéry (1901) = C. Guéry, "Commanderie de Bourgoult", Revue Catholique de Normandie 11 (1901): 11-22, 114-126, etc.
Mathieu (1996) = Jean-Noël Mathieu, "Recherches sur les premiers comtes de Dammartin", Paris et Ile-de-France Mémoires 47 (1996): 7-59 + gen. tables.
MGH SS = Monumenta Germaniae Historica, Scriptores series.
Moriarty-Loyd-White = George Andrews Moriarty, L. C. Loyd, and Geoffrey H. White, "The Ancestors of Simon de Montfort, earl of Leicester", CP 7, Appendix D, 708-717.
Obit. Sens = Obituaires de la Province de Sens (2 vols. in 3, Paris, 1902-6).
OV = Augustus le Prevost, ed. Orderici Vitalis Historiæ Ecclesiasticæ, 5 vols. (Paris, 1838-55); also available in Marjorie Chibnall, ed. & trans., The Ecclesiastical History of Orderic Vitalis, 6 vols. (Oxford, 1969-80). As I do not have easy access to all volumes of Chibnall's edition, citations here are given from Prevost's edition.
Porée (1901) = le Chanoine Porée, Histoire de l'abbaye du Bec, 2 vols. (Évreux, 1901).
Power (2004) = Daniel Power, The Norman Frontier in the Twelfth and Early Thirteenth Centuries (Cambridge University Press, 2004).
Rhein (1910) = André Rhein, "La Seigneurie de Montfort en Iveline", Mémoires de la Société Archéologique de Rambouillet 21 (1910): 1-363.
RHF = Recueil des historiens des Gaules et de la France.
Wm. Malmes., Gesta Regum = William Stubbs, ed., Willelmi Malmesbiriensis Monachi De gestis regum Anglorum. libri quinque; Historiæ Novellæ libri tres, 2 vols. (Rolls series 90, 1887-9).
Compiled by Stewart Baldwin
First uploaded 7 July 2005.
Revision uploaded 29 May 2012, with thanks to Peter Stewart for his comments.
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