Newburgh, Henry de (DNB00)

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NEWBURGH, NEUBOURG, or BEAUMONT, HENRY de, Earl of Warwick (d. 1123), called after his lordship Neubourg, near Beaumont-le-Roger, Normandy, younger son of Roger de Beaumont and Adeline, daughter of Waleran, count of Meulan, is spoken of by Wace as a brave knight in 1066 (Roman de Rou, l. 11139, ed. Pluquet, ii. 127). His name is included in some Battle Abbey Rolls (Leland, Holinshed, and the Dives Roll, drawn up 1866), but his presence at Hastings seems a matter of inference, and the prowess of his elder brother Robert [see Beaumont, Robert de, d. 1118, count of Meulan] is mentioned without any notice of him (William of Poitiers, pp. 134, 155, ed. Giles; Orderic, p. 501). When the Conqueror built the castle at Warwick in 1068 he gave it into the keeping of Henry (ib. p. 511), who, however, probably lived in Normandy during the greater part of the reign; for his name does not appear in Domesday, and he was in 1080 a baron of the Norman exchequer (Floquet). In that year he, in common with his father and brother, persuaded the Conqueror to be reconciled to his son Robert at Rouen (Orderic, p. 572). He was made Earl of Warwick by William II, probably early in his reign, and received from the king the lands of a rich English noble, Thurkill of Arden; for as Thurkill's successor he claimed certain lands in Warwickshire that Thurkill had given to the abbey of Abingdon. The abbot, to secure his goodwill and obtain a confirmation of the grant, offered him a mark of gold, which he accepted, and confirmed the grant (Historia de Abingdon, ii. 8, 20, 21). He was a friend and companion of the Conqueror's youngest son Henry, and when there was division among the lords who met to choose a successor to William II in 1100, it was mainly owing to his advice that they chose Henry. He was a witness to the charter of liberties that Henry published at his coronation (Stubbs, Select Charters, p. 98), signed the king's letter recalling Archbishop Anselm [q. v.], and was no doubt a member of the inner circle of Henry's counsellors (Freeman, William Rufus, ii. 362). When most of Henry's lords were either openly or secretly disloyal and favoured the attempt of Duke Robert in 1101, Earl Henry and his brother were among the few that were faithful to the king. He held, and is said to have built, a castle near Abertawy, or Swansea, which was unsuccessfully attacked by the Welsh in 1113 (Brut, p. 123; Caradoc of Llancarvan, ed. Powel, p. 144). Jointly with his brother he was patron of the abbey of Préaux, near Pont Audemer in Normandy, which had been built by his grandfather, Humfrey de Vielles, and where his father, Roger, had ended his days as a monk in 1094. Both the brothers loved and greatly enriched the house (Orderic, p. 709), and Henry gave the monks the manor and church of Warmington in Warwickshire, where they formed an alien priory. He founded a hospital, or priory, of Austin canons at Warwick in honour of the holy sepulchre, and of that order, which was finished by his eldest son Roger, and largely endowed the church of St. Mary, at Warwick, intending to make it collegiate, which was afterwards done by Roger. He also began to form Wedgenock Park, near Warwick, in imitation of the park that King Henry formed at Woodstock. He died on 20 June 1123, and was buried with his fathers in the abbey of Préaux (Ross, Account of Earls of Warwick, p. 229). Less prominent and less ambitious than his brother, he was held in high repute; for he was prudent, active, upright, and law-abiding, of pleasant disposition and holy life (Orderic, p. 709). By his wife Margaret, elder daughter of Geoffrey, count of Perche, he had five sons, Roger de Beaumont (who succeeded him as Earl of Warwick, and died 1153), Henry (William of Jumièges, viii. 41), Robert de Neubourg (who succeeded to his father's Norman estates, became seneschal and chief justiciar of Normandy, was a benefactor to the abbey of Bec, assumed the monastic habit there, and in 1185 died and was buried at Bec), Geoffrey, and Rotrou, who became archdeacon of Rouen, was consecrated bishop of Evreux in 1139, was translated to the archbishopric of Rouen in 1165, and died in 1183 (Gallia Christiana, xi. 48–50, 576–8). He also had two daughters. His countess, Margaret, was beautiful and was famed for her noble and religious character. She was a benefactor to the Knights Templars and to the canons of Kenilworth (Monasticon, vi. 481; Baronage, i. 69).

[Authorities quoted; Orderic, pp. 511, 572, 676, 709, ed. Duchesne; William of Malmesbury's Gesta Regum, v. cc. 393, 394, 407, ii. 470, 471, 483 (Rolls Ser.); William of Jumièges, viii. c. 41, p. 314, ed. Duchesne; Chron. Normann. p. 996, ed. Duchesne; Floquet's Essai sur l'Échiquier de Normandie, p. 11; Brut y Tywysogion, p. 123 (Rolls Ser.); Ross's Earls of Warwick, p. 229, ed. Hearne; Dugdale's Baronage, i. 68, 69; Dugdale's Warwickshire, i. 377–9, ed. Thomas; Dugdale's Monasticon, vi. 602, 1054, 1325, 1326; Tanner's Notitia Monast. pp. 570–2; Duchess of Cleveland's Battle Abbey Roll, ii. 355–8; Freeman's Norm. Conq. iv. 191; Freeman's Will. Rufus, i. 472, ii. 348, 358, 362, 366; Doyle's Official Baronage, iii. 571.]

W. H.