Gilbert de Gand - Gilbert de Ghent

Rufford Abbey
Rufford Abbey, Lincolnshire
Photo © Tom Courtney, Jan 2006

Few among the companions of the Conqueror were so splendidly rewarded as was Gilbert de Gand, who held 772 English manors, and became baron of Folkingham; yet there is much difference of opinion as to his identity. Dugdale, sir Henry Ellis and others have called him a younger son of Baldwin, count of Flanders, which would make him a nephew of the queen Matilda. This opinion now seems exploded. Freeman rejects it, calling him a Flemish adventurer. This latter seems scarcely true, in view of the great possessions he received. Norman People traces him from Witikind, duke of Angria, the opponent of Charlemagne, c. 780, which pedigree seems more reasonable. From Witikind descended Bruno, duke of Saxony, whose second son, Wickman, was created, count of Gand in 940 by the emperor Otho, his nephew. Wickman's second son, Adalbert, was the father of Ralph, who was the father of Baldwin de Gand, count of Gand or Alost, whose younger brother, Gilbert de Gand became baron of Folkingham in England. Gilbert with William Malet and Robert Fitz Richard followed the Conqueror on his expedition to the north of England in 1068 and took charge of the conquered city of York, with its new Norman garrison. In the following year, they were in command of the city when the Danes landed in England and he was one of a small number who escaped that massacre. He was the restorer of Bardney abbey in Lincolnshire, and is supposed to have died in 1094 He married Alice, daughter of Hugh de Montfort-sur-Risle who had (1) Gilbert, who died without issue during the lifetime of his father; (2) Hugh, married Adeline, sisterof Waleran, count of Meulent; (3) Walter de Gand, ancestor of the earls of Lincoln; (4) Robert de Gand, provost of Beverly, and possibly Ralph. Walter succeeded to all his father's English possessions, and married Maud, the daughter of Stephen, count of Brittany and earl of Richmond. He died in 1138, leaving Gilbert, Robert and Geoffroy. Gilbert became earl of Lincoln upon his marriage with a daughter of Ranulph Gernons, fourth earl of Chester and Lincoln --(Falaise Roll).

Gilbert de Gant, Earl of Lincoln (c. 1126 - 1156 ) was the son of Walter de Gant and Maud of Brittany. He was made Earl of Lincoln by King Stephen, de spite William de Roumare (Romayre) still enjoying the Earldom . He was also known as comte de Lincolne Gislebert II de Gand . He married Rohese de Clare , daughter of Richard fitz Gilbert , Lord of Clare and Adeliza de Meschines ; He was taken prisoner, while still in his youth, with King Stephen at the Battle of Lincoln in 1142. He was later compelled by Ranulph de Gernon, 2nd Earl of Chester , to marry his niece, the Lady Hawyse de Roumare, daughter and heir of William de Roumare, in whose right he eventually became Earl of Lincoln. They had daughter Alice de Gant, married to Simon of St Liz III, 7th Earl of Huntingdon and Northampton . He founded, as Earl of Lincoln, Rufford Abbey c. 1148 in Nottinghamshire , England . He became the fourth Earl of Lincoln in England, in 1147

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