Page images

of St. David's,1 granting and confirming to William Fitz-Maurice Fitz-Gerald the office of Dapifer2 of the bishopric, in succession to his father, Maurice Fitz-Gerald (the ancestor of the Geraldines), who had held the same under his brother David. As Peter, the second Bishop of St. David's (Suffragan to the see of Canterbury), occupied the see from 1176 to 1198, it is manifest that the dignity was conferred prior to Philip's departure for Ireland. (S. Gormanston MSS., H. M. C., iv.) He and Odo de Carew (a name of great antiquity in Pembrokeshire) married two sisters, daughters of Richard Fitz-Tancred, of whom it is said (Ang. Sac., ii, 468) “tunc temporis in partibus illis magnus habebatur."

A.D. 1146-1215. Giraldus Cambrensis, or Sylvester Giraldus de Barri, the early and well-known chronicler, youngest son of William de Barri, was born at Manorbeer circa 1146, and, like his brothers, in descent maternally from Rhys ap Theodore, Prince of South Wales. His career is thoroughly authenticated by his own testimony, and leaves nothing to be questioned in that respect. It may be safely asserted that but for him we should have been in absolute ignorance of the earliest possessors of Manorbeer; and, what is of more consequence, the invasion of Ireland, in which they took a prominent part, would never have been so fully known, or its details so authentically established. It is true that we glean little from him in a genealogical point of view, beyond his immediate relations and kinsmen; but the bare record of Manorbeer as the place of his birth affords us a sure clue, and, as one may say, a safe starting-point on which to found the family history. But for him, again, the royal and

1 It was in 1176-7 that Peter de Leia, the Cluniac Prior of Wenlock, succeeded to the see of Menevia, and died in 1198, having presided over St. David's for twenty-two years. (Annales Cambria, p. 55.)

2 Dapiferatus.

3 To this grant Walter de Vinsor (sic) [Wyndesore] is also a wit


4 Giraldus de Barri seems to have written at least twelve or more treatises,-The Topography of Ireland (published by Camden); The Vaticinal History of Ireland, relating to its invasion by Strongbow, Fitz-Stephen, and Maurice Fitz-Gerald, and translated by Hooker in Hollingshed's Chronicle,-for which two works he collected the materials from the time he first went to that country, in 1184, in company with his brother Philip, and as secretary to Prince John, Earl of Moreton; the Itinerarium Cambrice, Topographium Cambria, De Principum Instructione, Anglorum Cronicon; besides eight others, of which the treatise, De Sudoribus circa Sedem Menevensem, sets forth his troubles in respect of the bishopric of St.

exalted owners of the estate, subsequent to Edward III, would have totally eclipsed the Barri family's connection with it. The attachment to the place of his birth is shown by his own description of it; overdrawn, perhaps, as to its physical features, but more true then than now.

To recapitulate all that is known, or might tend to illustrate the history of this historian-how he strove, after being elected twice to the see of St. David's, against, the arbitrary will of Henry II on the one hand, and the opposition of the see of Canterbury on the other-would far exceed the limits of this paper. We can only rejoice that such a man existed, and that he has bequeathed to posterity so much that is invaluable to history.

A.D. 1203-14 (5-16 John). William de Barri was witness to a charter of Geoffrey of Lanthony, Bishop of St. David's, confirming to William, son of William Fitz-Maurice, the post of Dapifer of the bishopric, in succession to his father and grandfather in the same office. We imagine this William to have been the same, named as nephew of Giraldus Cambrensis, to whom, in 1203, the latter resigned his archdeaconry of Brecknock.

The first of whom we then find mention is

A.D. 1208-13 (8-13), William de Barri, living 1213, the son of Philip, whose estates in Ireland were confirmed to him by patent, dated at Woodstock, 8 John, as already stated. According to Lodge (revised by Archdall) he was one of the "Recognitores Magne Assise" for Kent, where several of his successors, Lieutenants of Dover Castle, resided, having been located in that county. He is also said to have been appointed, with others, assessor of the damage done to the clergy in the diocese of St. David's during the interdict under which the country was laid in the same reign.

The next recorded is,

A.D. 1208 (9 John), Robert de Barri, brother of the foregoing William, who assigned to him the estate in Ireland, wholly or

David's. To this he was twice elected, first in 1176, in succession to his uncle, David Fitz-Gerald; and secondly in 1198, resigning the see in 1203. Subsequently to this last election he visited Rome several times in defence of the Chapter's election of himself, and in opposition to the prerogative of Canterbury over that of St. David's. He attended Baldwin, Archbishop of Canterbury, in his progress through Wales in preaching the Crusade, and was with Henry II in 1189, on his death-bed at Chinon. He was Archdeacon both of St. David's and of Brecknock, where he lived, and appears to have died circa 1216, aged seventy, being buried at St. David's.

in part, for the bequest made on his lands near his Castle of Robertstown shows him to have been the possessor thereof. He was father of David de Barri following

A.D. 1246-47 (30 Henry III). David de Barri held at that date four knights' fees in Pembrokeshire, which had been assigned to Joanna de Montecanisio1 on the partition of the lands of William Marshall, Earl of Pembroke, among coheirs. It was, no doubt, the same David who was witness to the partition of the said lands, which occurred between 1241 and 1246. There seems no reason to dissociate this David from the lord of Buttevant in 1234; the same also who in that year (18 Henry III) obtained a license for a fair and weekly market at Buttevant in the lordship of Olethan. (Close Rolls, 18 Henry III, m. 5.) He is said to have added to the revenues of his grandfather's foundation, Ballybeg. To this David, who is recorded to have been killed in 1262, succeeded his son David de Barri.

A.D. 1267 (51 Henry III). David de Barri was Justiciary of Ireland in 1267. (Hanmer's Chron., i, p. 402.) He was still living in 1273, for in that year he had free warren in all his lands, as seen by patent dated at Gloucester, 10 Sept., 2 Edward I. He died, according to some, in 1278, but according to other testimony in 1280. It is further stated of him that in 1235 he added to the revenues of Ballybeg, an abbey which had been endowed by his great-grandfather Philip.

Thus far the records are incontestably clear; but we now arrive at a period in the history of this family, in its connection with Wales, in which they are somewhat obscure. John de Barri, the next of whom we find mention in Pembrokeshire, died shortly after 1324, as will be shown. He is recorded as John, son of David, but does not appear as heir to him in the Irish

Thierry states that a certain adventurer, Guérin de Mont-Cénis, whose Normanised name became Mont-Chensey, was associated with others in the invasion of Cardiganshire from the seaboard. (Cambrian Register, 126.) He was plainly one of the earliest ancestors of the family of Munchensi, created Barons by writ of summons in 1264. The above was Joane, wife of Warine de Munchensi, the sixth Baron by tenure, t. Henry III, and daughter of William Marshall, fourth Earl of Pembroke.

2 Anno 18 Hen. III, Sept. 26, 1234-" Rex dedit domino David de Barry mercatum apud Buttevant singulis septimanis die sabbathi, et unam feriam singulis annis per 8 dies, viz. in vigil' et die sancte Lucie, et sex dies sequent'."

possessions. Neither is it manifest by documentary evidence whether he was not the son of a subsequent David (in 1290); and if this be fact, it would make him grandson of David the above Justiciary. We may assume for granted, therefore, that the David in the descent recorded by Lodge was the immediate predecessor of John de Barri.

A.D. 1301 (26 Edw. I). John, son of David de Barri, gave in 1301 the advowson of Penally to Acornbury Priory, and that of Manorbeer to Pembroke Priory, as set forth in Inq. 29 Edw. I, No. 82, and Patent, 5 Edw. III, p. 1, m. 38. He was living as late as 1324 (19 Edw. II), and his death probably occurred a year or two later. His wife's name was Beatrix, which we learn from his charter to Acornbury. He had two brothers, David and Richard, of whom the former predeceased him, leaving a son of the same name. Of these two grants of the temporalities of Manorbeer and Penally to Pembroke and Acornbury Priories, it is probable that the latter was due to the fact that at an earlier date Ann Barri had been Prioress of that house; and this is shown by the cartulary of Acornbury, fo. 79. John, styled in his charter to that house, "John, son of David de Barri" held, in 1324, five fees at "Maynerbeer", worth one hundred marks, as by inquisition taken in July of that year (17) Edw. II), No. 75.

In affiliating him to David, son of the Irish Justiciary, we find it recorded that Joan, wife of David de

1 This charter has been recited at p. 139, vol. xi, 4th Series, of these Collections, and is dated at Cornbury, 13 April 1301. One seal only is pendent therefrom, being the Barri coat,-argent, four bars gemelles gules. Acornbury (of the Order of St. Austin), founded by Margery, wife of Walter de Lacy (t. King John), was a nunnery about three miles south of Hereford, and dedicated to the honour of the Holy Cross. Dugdale gives the names of Agnes King as Prioress in 1465, and later, of Joan de Ledbury; and these two names occur in the Formulare Anglicanum, pp. 105, 125. But Ann Barri appears to have been a much earlier Prioress. In a charter of Roger de Clifford to the nuns of Acornbury, another is named as Peronilla Edranee. Dugdale names the foundress as Margery, wife of William de Lacy, but a charter of confirmation in Dodsworth (vol. lxiii, f. 100) shows this to be an error: 'Quas quidem terras dominus Johannes, rex Anglie, dicte Margerie uxori mee donavit ad faciendum domum Religionis apud Cornebirie." (Carta Walteri de Lacy.) To this charter William de Lacy is one of the witnesses.


Barry, living in 1298, and presumed mother of John, assigned to her son, John de Barri, the moiety of certain lands in Ireland (Lodge). It is not impossible but that he may have been the same John de Barri who succeeded William de Burreche in 1282 as Treasurer of St. David's. (Annales Cambria, 107.)

Of some of his Irish property we have the following proof. In 1308 (Ing. ad quod damnum, 1 Edw. II, No. 96) he gave certain lands to the Prior and Convent of Mount Carmel at Castillaytharn in Munster, together with other land in the cantred of Olethan. In 1318 (Irish Patent, p. 25, No. 165), at his instance, he being called John, son of David de Barri, the sum of £105, which was owing by his manor of Buttevant to the Exchequer, was allowed to that vill in order to assist in fortifying it. In 1319-21 he passed by two fines (Irish Patent, p. 68, No. 25), the seignories of Olethan and Muscherie-Dunegan, to David, son of David de Barri, and in 1320 he gave a certain acquittance to John de Carew. (Close Rolls, 14 Edw. III.) This document, "by John de Barri, Lord of Olethan, in Ireland", sets forth that an indenture had been made between him and Nicholas de Carew respecting a marriage between Richard de Barri, brother of him, John, and Beatrice, daughter of Nicholas, for which Nicholas was to pay John £500 on the death of Nicholas. John de Carew, his son, warranted the payment of the sum named. Hence the deed in question was virtually a quittance to John de Carew of such warranty.1

John, as we have seen, was still alive in 1324. His death seems to have occurred very shortly afterwards, for a contention arose about that date, as to the lordship of Manorbeer, between Richard (his brother) and David (his nephew, son of his brother David, who had died before him). It is also apparent that his wife, Beatrix, was already dead at that time. He can have

1 We have to thank Mr. Floyd, who has worked out much of the history of the early Pembrokeshire families from the records, for the facts here specified in his MS. Collections.

« PreviousContinue »