Notes on the de Brus Family (Agatha daughter of Robert de Brus I).

Extracted form Early Yorkshire Charters

Volume 2 pages 300-301

Published by Yorkshire Record Society (Extra series)


Ralph son of Ribald held 15 knights' fees of the honour.

He occurs among the principal tenants of count Stephen in Yorkshire at Michaelmas 1130 and about the same time witnessed the charter of count Stephen to Roald the constable. He witnessed charters of earl Alan, 1136-45 and charters of earl Conan, post .Set 1156, 1159-71, and 1163-4. In 1159 he made a payment of 5 marks in Norfolk and Suffolk. In 1162 he paid half a mark for scrutage in Norfolk and Suffolk in 1165 he rendered account of 50 marks in Yorkshire and in 1168 half a mark in Norfolk and Suffolk for the aid for the marriage of the king's daughter, At first sight it seems doubtful whether all these references relate to the same man but the cumulative evidence does not support any alternative suggestion

Ralph son of Ribald married Agatha daughter of Robert de Brus, to whom her father gave the manor of Elwick in Hartness, co. Durham, as her marriage portion, issuing a notification to that effect: among the witnesses were several tenants of the honour of Richmond or sons of tenants, including Richard de Rollos, Wigan son of Landric, Alan the butler, Acaris, Hervey son of Ribaald, Judichel de Cotona (Cowton), Hugh son of Jernegan, and Gamel son of Douenald; and another witness was Bernard the priest who performed the marriage ceremony. It may be assumed that as Elwick appears to have descended to the Nevilles of Middleham Agatha was the mother of Ronert son of Ralph, the heir of Ralph son of Ribald. In his printed text of the document issued by Robert de Brus, Farrer assigned the date 1145-54, describing Robert as Robert de Brus II - younger son of Robert de Brus I, who had died in 1142. He gave no reasons for such a date, or for such a parentage for Agatha: and it is likely that he would have re-examined both these points in the light of the Richmond evidence. If they are accepted we are confronted by the curious position that the father-in-law of the son of a Domesday tenant was living as late as 1191. The evidence given below shows that Ralphs grandson Waleran was born c 1170, so that 1149 would seem to be the latest possible date for Ralph's marriage Even so, as he witnessed a charter not later than c 1116 and possibly one of date c 1091-94, he would have been an elderly bridegroom in the period 1145-

The balance of evidence suggests that 1125-35 is a more likely date than 1145-54 for the marriage of Ralph son of Ribald, and that Agatha his wife was a daughter of Robert de Brus I

 Back to Start of section