Family:Alfred of Marlborough (s1020-?)

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"Alured de Merleberg" - MS. 350, folio 40 recto

Alfred of Marlborough, seen in some records as Alured de Merleberge, parentage unknown, was born say 1020.[1]

Alured de Merleberge holds the Castle of Ewias from William the King. (The King himself granted to him the lands which William the Earl, who had re-strengthened this castle, had given to him.) That is to say, 5 carucates of land there, and at Manitone other 5 carucates. The king granted to him also the land of Radolfus de Bernai, which land belonged to the castle. There he had in demesne 2 ploughs and 9 Welshmen with 6 ploughs rendering 7 sextaries of honey and 12 borders working one day in every week. There are 4 cowherds and 1 "man" rendering 6 pence. His five knights, Richard, Gilbert, William, and William and Harnold, have 5 ploughs in demesne and 12 borders and 3 fisheries and 22 acres of meadows. Two others, William and Radolfus, hold land for 2 ploughs. Turstin holds land rendering 19d and Warnerius land of 5s. They have 5 borders. This Castle of Ewias is worth £10.[2]

He had a daughter Agnes, to whom he gave a large tract of land, supposedly as a wedding present.[3]

In Radelaw Hundred the same Alured holds Cuure. Earl Harold held it. There are 15 hides paying geld, but King William acquitted 6 hides from payment of geld. Agnes, daughter of Alured, the wife of Turstin de Wigemore, holds this Manor. In demesne there are 2 ploughs, and a priest and a bailiff and 26 villeins and 8 borders. Amongst them all they have 32 ploughs. There are four serfs and a smith, and the meadow and wood renders nothing, and one hide of this land lies in the King's Wood. In the time of King Edward, the third penny from the three hundred belonged to this Manor. Now it is taken away--Then it was worth £25, now 100 shillings less.[4]

The great Earl William who granted land at Wigemore Castle to Turstin, and Ewias Castle to Alured de Merleberge, was killed in a battle in Flanders in 1070, and his son Roger succeeded him as earl of Hereford. Tile latter with his brother-in-law, the Earl of Norfolk, rebelled against King William. For this act his hand was forfeited and he died in prison. As above shown, the king re-granted Ewias to De Merleberge, while Wigemore was granted to Ralf de Mortimer.[5]

Children of Alured de Merleberge:

i. Agnes, b. say 1045;[6] m. Turstin the Fleming.

External References

Some 11 miles from Hereford is the village of Ewyas Harold. 'Ewyas' is Welsh for 'sheep area'; the 'Harold' comes from, not the future king of England, but Harold de Ewyas, the son of Ralph the Timid. However, it was here that the future Harold II built a motte-and-bailey castle in the mid-1050s. Made of wood, virtually all the buildings had disappeared by 1645, and today there is nothing left but a circular mound. Not much is known about this castle in Harold's time except that there was a chapel dedicated to St Nicholas. After the Conquest, William gave the castle and its lands to Alfred of Marlborough.

Source: In the footsteps of King Harold

MS. 350


1.^  Purely an estimate.

2.^  Melville, Henry, A.M., LL.B., The Ancestry of John Whitney: Who, with His Wife Elinor, and Sons John, Richard, Nathaniel, Thomas, and Jonathan, Emigrated from London, England, in the Year 1635, and Settled in Watertown, Massachusetts; the First of the Name in America, and the One from Whom a Great Majority of the Whitneys Now Living in the United States Are Descended (New York, NY: The De Vinne Press, 1896), p. 19, supposedly from Domesday Book, vol. i (printed), p. 186, ix.

3.^  Melville, p. 19.

4.^  Melville, p. 20.

5.^  Melville, p. 23.

Copyright © 2006, Tim Doyle and the Whitney Research Group

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