MALE Amaury I de Montfort l'Amaury

Lord of Montfort l'Amaury, fl. 1022-1060.

Amaury witnessed charters of king Robert II of France in 1022 ["Sign. Almaricus Miles de Monteforte.", RHF 10: 607 (#34)], 1027×1028 ["S. Almarici de Monteforti." RHF 10: 618 (#46)], and 4 February 1031 ["S. Amalrici de Monteforti." Cart. Notre-Dame de Chartres, 88 (#13); RHF 10: 626 (#54)]. Between 11 April 1052 and July 1053, Amaury appears with his wife Bertrade and his sons Simon and Mainer as founder of the priory of Saint-Thomas d'Épernon ["... 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 was a counselor of king Henri I ["Rex Henricus, ..., consultu Amalrici senioris de Monte-Forti, filii Guillelmi Hanoensis, ..." OV vii, 14 (3: 223)], and a witness to charters of that king in 1058 ["Signum ... Amolrici de Montfort" RHF 11: 599 (#31)] and 1060 ["S. Amalrici de Monteforti." RHF 11: 606 (#36)].

Date of Birth: Unknown.
Place of Birth: Unknown.

Date of Death: After 1060.
Place of Death: Unknown.
Amaury was still living in 1060, when he was a witness to a charter of king Henri I [see above].

Possible father: Guillaume de Hainaut.
Possible mother:
NN de Nogent.
See the Commentary section for a discussion of the evidence.

Spouse: Bertrade, fl. 1052×3, probably a sister of Geoffroy de Gometz.

As noted above, Simon and Mainer are called the sons of Amaury in the foundation charter of Saint-Thomas d'Épernon. Simon is also called the son of Amaury by Orderic Vitalis ["senior Simon, Amalrici filius" OV viii, 14 (3: 347)].

MALE Simon I de Montfort, d. in or shortly after 1087, lord of Montfort;
m. (1) Isabel,
daughter of Hugues Bardoul, lord of Broyes, Beaumont, Pithiviers, and Nogent-le-Roi.
m. (2) NN;
m. (3)
Agnès, daughter of Richard, count of Évreux.

MALE Mainer, fl. 1052×3 - 1074×5.
Mainer signs the foundation charter of Sain-Thomas d'Épernon with his parents and brother in 1052×3 [Cart. S.-Thomas d'Épernon, 1-4 (#1), see above]. In 1066 he signs a charter as a brother of Simon de Montfort ["... Simon de Monte Forti; Mainerius, fratre ejus ..." Cart. S.-Père de Chartres, 185 (#59)]. In (probably) 1074×5, with his brother Simon, he signs a donation of his uncle Geoffroy de Gometz [S. Simonis, nepotis ejusdem Gauffredi. S. Mainerii, fratris ejus." Rec. actes Philippe I, 178-181 (#70)]. [See also Moriarty-Loyd-White, 708, note (i)]

See the Commentary section for possible additional children.


Possible father: Guillaume de Hainaut.
Stated by Orderic Vitalis to have been the father of Amaury I de Montfort, he is otherwise unknown ["Rex Henricus, ..., consultu Amalrici senioris de Monte-Forti, filii Guillelmi Hanoensis, ..." OV vii, 14 (3: 223)]. As noted below, he has often been conjectured as a son of the tenth century count Amaury.

Possible mother: NN de Nogent.
The continuator of Aimoin de Fleury has a passage which indicates that a man (name unclear) who fortified Montfort and Épernon married a lady of Nogent and had a son Amaury, father of two sons Simon and Amaury, said Simon being the father Amaury de Montfort and Bertrade, countess of Anjou ["... in tempore Regis Roberti benia fuit de dominio San Germani. <erasure> Ipse firmavit Montifortem et Sparnomum: quandam quoque dominam de Novigento habuit uxorem; de qua unum filium habuit, nuncupatum Almaricum. Idem Almaricus duos filios habuit, scilicet Simonem et Almaricum. Symon procreavit Almaricum de Monteforti et Bertrandam Comitissam Andegavensam. ..." Ex Continuatione Historiæ Aimoini Monachi Floriac., RHF 11: 275]. At the point where the note "<erasure>" appears, the last part of one line and the beginning of the next have been carefully erased, amounting to nearly a (short) line, or several words. This erasure is not indicated by the editors of RHF, but is discussed by Rhein, working from the same manuscript [Rhein (1910), 27-8]. In a note to the passage in the continuation of Aimoin de Fleury, the editors of RHF suggested suggest that the passage should be read: "Tempore Roberti Regis Almaricus firmavit etc." [RHF 11: 275, note (e)] Such an emendation, which seems to have no clear basis, would appear to make Amaury the son of an otherwise unattested Amaury. If the erasure is ignored altogether, then king Robert appears to be the antecedent of the word ipse which appears immediately after the erasure. This is the approach of the Chronicle of Saint-Denis, which makes king Robert [II] of France the person who fortified Montfort and Êpernon, married a lady of Nogent, and had son Amaury [de Montfort] ["Au tens de ce Roi fu faite banie de la segnurie de l'Abeie de S. Denise. Cit Rois Robert ferma le chastel de Montfort et d'Espernon; une Dame de Nojent ot epousée; de cele ot un fil qui ot non Amauris. Cil Amauris ot deulx fuix, Symon et Amauri, etc." Chron. S. Denis, RHF 10: 311; see also RHF 11: 275, note (e)]. There is no good reason to accept this version.

This evident reference to the mother of Amaury does not necessarily conflict with Orderic's information about his father. It could plausibly be conjectured that the erased words referred to a Guillaume who was the antecedent of the word ipse appearing immediately after the erasure, but there is no good evidence that this was the case. Nevertheless, it is common to combine the accounts of Orderic and Aimoin's continuator by giving Amaury as the son of Guillaume de Hainaut by a lady of Nogent [e.g., Anselme 6: 71]. While it is possible that this scenario correctly gives Amaury's father and mother, the documentation in both cases is less than ideal.

Conjectured paternal grandfather: Amaury (Amulricus), fl. ca. 950 - 973, count in Hainaut (comes ex pago Hainou).
Conjectured paternal grandmother: NN, daughter of Isaac, count of Cambrai.
According to the History of the Bishops of Cambrai, written about 1041, Amaury, a count from the region (pagus) of Hainaut (not count of Hainaut, as sometimes stated), who was married to a daughter of Isaac, count of Cambrai, was related to his wife within a prohibited degree, and was therefore divorced from his wife by Fulbert, bishop of Cambrai (934-956), possibly about 950 ["Alter itidem comes ex pago Hainou, Amulricus nomine, vir genere nobilissimus et iuxta secularis gloriae pompam fortunatissimus, filiam Isaac aeque comitis prefati duxit uxorem. Multis autem internoscentibus atque deferentibus conperiens Fulbertus episcopus, eos, sponsum videlicet et sponsam, proximae cognitionis consanguinitate propinquos et ideo contra legem copulatos, facto consilio canonice ab invicem seiunxit, datoque poenitentiae modo, hoc tantum scelus admissum expiari precepit." Gesta Episcoporum Cameracensium, i, 74, MGH SS 7: 427; the notice appears in the history immediately after an act of Otto I dated 30 April 947, and immediately before an account of the Hungarian invasion in 953]. Amaury (Amelricus) appears with a count Richizo in an act of the emperor Otto I dated 12 February 973 ["... fidelissimorum nostrorum Richizonis atque Amelrici comitum interventu ..." MGH DD O I 579 (#426)]. Duvivier suggested that Amaury was count in the eastern part of the pagus of Hainaut [Duvivier (1865), 91]. Vanderkindere offers the theory that Amaury was count of Valenciennes [Vanderkindere (1902), 71-3, 88 (table)]. Neither mentioned a possible connection of count Amaury with Guillaume de Hainaut or Amaury de Montfort.

The suggestion that Amaury was the father of Guillaume de Hainaut has no strong basis, but is a conjecture based partly on the supposed connection of both Amaury and Guillaume with Hainaut and partly on the name Amaury. The conjecture is plausible enough, but falls far short of proof.

The supposed relationship between the Montforts and the counts of Hainaut

It has often been stated that Amaury III de Montfort (younger son of Simon I de Montfort), husband of Richilde de Hainaut, separated from his wife under the pretext of being related [Anselme 6: 73; Prevost, notes to OV, 2: 452 n. 3], and it has suggested that this might indicate that Guillaume de Hainaut "not only came from Hainault, but was connected to the ruling house." [Moriarty-Loyd-White, 708, note (f)] However, this view is not valid, for a couple of reasons. First, there does not appear to be any medieval source which gives consanguinity as the reason that Amaury rejected his wife. The principle source for the marriage of Richilde de Hainaut, the chronicle of Giselbert of Mons, simply states that he rejected her, without giving a reason ["... 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]. Second, it is far from clear how making Guillaume de Hainaut a member of the ruling house of Hainaut would make Amaury related to Richilde, for Hainaut had changed dynasties in the interval. At the time that Guillaume de Hainaut would have lived, Hainaut was ruled by the family of the Reginars. At the time of the marriage of Amaury III and Richilde, Hainaut had been recently acquired by a branch of the counts of Flanders, via the marriage of Richilde's grandfather Baldwin I of Hainaut (VI of Flanders) to Richilde, widow, and not heir by blood, of Hermann, the last count of the Reginar dynasty. Thus, the logic which would somehow connect Amaury III's rejection of his wife to a relationship via Guillaume de Hainaut is based on a false premise. Whatever Amaury's reasons were, the repudiation is not a clue to the origin of the Montforts.

Possible additional children:

FEMALE Ève, m. William Crispin I.
The Montfort-Crispin connection is discussed on the page of
Simon I de Montfort. As noted there, one of the possibilities is that Ève, wife of William Crispin I, was a daughter of Amaury I de Montfort [Moriarty-Loyd-White, 708, note (j)].

MALE Amaury.
As noted above, the continuator of Aimoin de Fleury [RHF 11: 275] and the Chronicle of Saint-Denis [RHF 10: 311] give Amaury two sons Simon and Amaury.

Falsely attributed father: Robert II, d. 20 July 1031, king of France, 996-1031.
[e.g., Tillet (1618), 63] The erasure that led to this error has already been discussed above. Most modern sources seem to have avoided this mistake. See also the page of Robert II.


Anselme = Père Anselme, Histoire généalogique et chronologique de la maison royale de France, 9 vols (Paris, 1726-33).

Cart. Notre-Dame de Chartres = E. de Lépinois & Lucien Merlet, Cartulaire de Notre-Dame de Chartres, 3 vols. (Chartres, 1862-5).

Cart. S.-Père de Chartres = M 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.

Duvivier (1865) = Charles Duvivier, Recherches sur le Hainaut ancien (Brussels, 1865).

MGH DD = Monumenta Germaniae Historica, Diplomata series. [O I = Otto I]

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.

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.

PL = P. Migne, Patrologiae Cursus Completus, series Latina, 221 vols. (Paris, 1844-1859).

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.

Tillet (1618) = Jean du Tillet, Recueil des roys de France, leurs couronne et maison (Paris, 1618).

Vanderkindere (1902) = Léon Vanderkindere, La Formation Territoriale des Principautes Belge au Moyen Age (2 vols., 2nd ed., Brussels, 1902, reprinted 1981).

Compiled by Stewart Baldwin

First uploaded 7 July 2005.

Revision uploaded 29 May 2012, with thanks to Peter Stewart for detailed comments.

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