Richard de Redvers

Plympton Castle, Devon
Plympton Castle, Devon
Photo © Tony Atkin, Jan. 2006

The "sire de Reviers" chronicled by Wace (l. 13616), who "brought with him marry knights," came from Revieres, near Creulli, in the arrondissement of Caen.

Richard was the son of a William de Redvers. In the cartulary of Carisbrook he is called the nephew of William Fitz Osbern, and the grant of the Isle of Wight to him after the death of Roger de Breteuil, Earl of Hereford, gives some support to the assertion. William Fitz Osbern had at least one other daughter besides the unfortunate Countess of Norfolk, of whom we learn that she became the mother of Raynold de Cracci.

One of Gunnora's nieces married Osmund de Centumville (i.e. Cotenville), Vicomté de Vernon, and had by him Fulk de Aneio and several daughters, one of whom was the mother of the first Baldwin de Redvers. Richard who was "the Sire de Reviers" at Hastings, and died in 1107, having been one of the principal counsellors and champions of Prince Henry in his conflicts with his brother, Robert Court-heuse, and who shortly after his accession to the throne in 1100, rewarded his friend's service by the gift of Tiverton and Plympton, and the third penny of the pleas of the county of Devon.

Richard's wife Lady Adeliza was a daughter of William Peverel of Nottingham and his wife Adelina of Lancaster, and her family by Richard de Redvers consisted of three sons, Baldwin, Earl of Devon, William, surnamed De Vernon, and Robert of St. Mary Church, and one daughter, Hawisia, wife of William de Roumare, Earl of Lincoln.

Richard died in 1107 and was buried at Monteburgh, an abbey in Normandy, of which he appears to have been one of the earliest benefactors, if not the founder, by permission of William the Conqueror, in 1080. The top of his stone coffin preserves the epithet "Fundator". --(Planche)


In the 12th century , the honour of Plympton, along with the Earldom of Devon, was given to the Redvers family. In the following century, it passed to the Courtenays, who had already acquired Okehampton, and, in 1335, they received the earldom too. It was also in the 14th century that the Dukedom of Exeter was bestowed on the Holland family, but they became extinct in the reign of Edward IV. During the civil war of King Stephen's reign, the castles of Plympton and Exeter were held against the king by Baldwin de Redvers in 1140 .

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