Alan Fitz-Flaald


Alan, who appears to have accompanied Henry I. to England. Alan Fitz-Flaald appears in the English records as Sheriff of Shropshire and otherwise from 1101 onwards. He founded Sporle Priory in Norfolk as a cell of St. Saumur in Brittany before 1122, and further proof of his Brittany connection is afforded by the lives of his descendants.

He married Avelina de Hesding, by whom he left three sons:-
  • 1. Jordan, who inherited the family estates and office of Senescal of Dol in Brittany and the lands of Burton, Tuxford, Warsop, etc., in England.

    He appears in the English Pipe Rolls as a landowner in Lincolnshire 1129-30, and in 1130 in an agreement with the Abbot of Marmoutier in Brittany. He is there styled 'a valiant and illustrious man,' and his wife is named Mary. He left two sons:-
    • (1) Jordan, 'the son of Jordan the son of Alan,' who restored to the church of Sele (a cell of St. Florent de Saumur), the mill at Burton which the monks had enjoyed in the time of 'Alani filii Flaaldi' and of 'Jordani patris mei.' He apepars to have died s.p.
    • (2) Alan, who succeedd his brother Jordan, and who with his wife Joan confirmed to the Priory of Marmoutier a grant by his grandfather Alan Fitz-Flaald of the title of the lands of Burton. He also figures in the Brittany records as 'Alanum filium quondam Jordani, Dolensem Senescallum,' and in a Bull of Pope Alexander III. he figures as Alan 'a noble man, Senescal of Dol, son of Jordan deceased,' granting to the Abbey of Tiron all his rights in the Church of Tronchet, etc., and the Churches of Sharrington, Tuxford, and Warsop in England. By his wife Joan he left a son and two daughters:-
      • i. Jordan, who died s.p.
      • ii. Olive, who appears as owner of Sharrington in England in 1227.
      • iii. Alicia, who was married to William Spina, son of Hamo, and appears in the Brittany records as in possession of the lands and office at Dol.
  • 2. William Fitz-Alan, Lord of Oswestrie in Shropshire. He was ancestor of the English house of Fitz-Alan. His grandson John Fitz-Alan married Isabel, second daughter of William, third Earl of Arundel, by which marriage the honours of Arundel came to his descendants.
  • 3. Walter, 'the son of Alan,' appears in the English 'Liber Nigri Scaccarii,' about 1154, as vassal of 'William the son of Alan of Salopscire,' for lands of the value of two knights' fees. In a charter of 1185 William the son of Alan and Walter the son of Alan appear as benefactors of the order of Knights Templars. William Fitz-Alan supported David I. of Scotland in asserting the rights of the Empress Matilda to the English throne, and his brother Walter Fitz-Alan seems to have accompanied David into Scotland, and to have been identical with the 'Walter the son of Alan' who appears as High Stewart of Scotland in the reign of David I. and Malcolm IV. This is rendered more sure by the fact that in 1335 that office was claimed by Richard Fitz-Alan, Earl of Arundel (descended of William Fitz-Alan above mentioned), as his by hereditary right, the real holder, Robert Stewart, the representative of Walter Fitz-Alan the original grantee, having been temporarily dispossessed by the English.

    On his creation as High Stewart of Scotland he also received great estates in the lowlands of Scotland from King David I. In 1157 King Malcolm IV. ratified the grants of the office of Stewart of Scotland to his family, and added greatly to his possessions to support the dignity while travelling in the service of the Crown. In 1164 he repelled an invasion of Renfrewshire. He founded Paisley Abbey - the foundation charter of which further proves his connection with Shropshire by showing that the monks to carry on the work were brought from thence, and that it was dedicated inter alios to St. Milburga of Wenloc in Shropshire. He died in 1177, leaving by his wife Eschyna de Molle, widow of Robert de Croc and daughter apparently of the Thomas de Londoniis, whose son Malcolm was the first Doorward of Scotland, Alan, who carried on the family and its honours. 'Simon, brother of Walter the son of Alan,' appears as a witness in the foundation charter of Paisley Abbey. To him the boyds, who bear the same arms as the Stewarts, trace their descent, but there seems to be no proof of this, and no other notice of Simon is known.


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