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Humphrey de Bohun 7th Earl of Hereford, 6th Earl of Essex, 2nd Earl of Northampton 1342-1373

Born: 25 March 1342


Died: 16 January 1373, Pleshey, Essex


Parents: William de Bohun 1st Earl of Northampton (born about 1312, Caldecot, Northampton, England, died 16 September 1360, buried Walden Abbey, Essex, England) married Elizabeth de Badlesmere (born 1313, Castle Badlesmere, Kent, England, died 8 June 1356 or 9 June 1378). Elizabeth was the widow of Edmund Mortimer married (27 June 1316) and had one son Roger Mortimer (born 11 November 1328)


Elizabeth de Bohun (born about 1335, Derbyshire, England, died 3 April 1385) married (28 September 1359, Derbyshire, England) Richard Fitz Alan 10th Earl of Arundel and Earl of Surrey (born 1346, Arundel, Sussex, England, died 21 September 1397, London, England)

Married: 9 December 1359, Norfolk, England

Spouse: Joan Fitzalan Countess of Hereford, (born about 1345/51, Arundel, Essex, England, died 7 April 1419, Saffron Walden, Essex, England)


Eleanor De Bohun Duchess of Gloucester (born about 1366, died 3 October 1399) married (before 24 Aug 1376) Thomas Plantagenet of Woodstock 1st Duke of Gloucester (born: 7 January 1354/5, Woodstock Palace, Oxfordshire, England, died: 8 September 1397, Prince's Inn, Pas De Calais, Calais, France, buried Collegiate Church of the Holy Trinity, St Edmunds, Westminster, Middlesex, England)

Mary De Bohun Countess of Derby (born about 1369, died 4 June 1394, buried: 6 July 1394, Trinity Hospital, Leicester, England) married (27 July 1380, Arundel Castle, Sussex, England) Henry IV Plantagenet (King of England) born 30 May 1366, Bolingbrooke Castle, Lincolnshire, England, Acceded: 13 October 1399, Westminster Abbey, London, England, died 20 March 1413, Westminster Abbey, London, England, buried Canterbury Cathedral, Canterbury, Kent, England) Henry married 2: (7 Feb 1403, Winchester Cathedral, London, England) Joan of Navarre, daughter of Charles d'Albret, King of Navarre, widow of John IV of Brittany

Elizabeth (born after 25 September 1369)

Heraldic Coat of Arms: Azure a bend argent cotised or between six lionceux rampant or

Crest: On a chapeau d'etat Gules, doubled Ermine, a lion guardant crowned Or.

Knight of the Garter 1365, Stall 17, became a member of the order of the garter after the death of Miles Stapleton

The De Bohun family had a history of great power, an earlier Humphrey De Bohun challenged Robert the Bruce to single combat at Bannockburn, and lost. The De Bohun family owned Huntington Castle, Walden Castle, Bronllys Castle and had Caldecote Castle built, and owned Hatfield Forest in Essex, a forest which had once been a Royal hunting forest.

Humphrey's father died in 1360, when he was aged 19, and his uncle Earl Humphrey in 1361 leaving him the Earldoms of Hereford and Essex, and the office of Constable of England and Richard, Earl of Arundel, the father of his future wife, became his guardian. In 1363 he escorted the King of Cyprus from Dover to London. In 1366 Humphrey led the discussions for the marriage of Prince Lionel Plantagenet to Violanta, daughter of Galeas, Duke of Milan. In 1369 Humphrey was one of the commanders in the unsuccessful expedition of John of Gaunt in France. Humphrey was at Westminster on 5 November 1370 as one of the witnesses to Edward III's letters addressing the complaints of the people of Aquitaine. In 1371 Humphrey was appointed Ambassador to the Duke of Brittany and took part in the capture of 25 Flemish ships.

Humphrey made his will on 12 December 1372, and died aged just 31 on 16 January 1373. Rumours suggest that Humphrey may have been involved in the poisoning of Thomas Beauchamp, 3rd Earl of Warwick on 13 November 1369, and that Edward III had Humphrey secretly hanged. Humphrey was buried on the north side of the presbytery, in the church of Walden Abbey, Essex, England, at the feet of his father.

Humphrey was associated with the making of several illuminated manuscripts and ordered the translation in around 1350, from French of The Romance of William of Palerne, Otherwise Known as The Romance of “William and the Werwolf”. It was a translation of a French romance Guillaume de Palerne, of about 1220. It is a story about a baby prince brought up by a werwolf. When the prince grows up he elopes with the daughter of the Emperor of Rome. The couple, who are wearing white bear skins as a disguise, are tracked by “blod-houndes bold”, but when the werwolf sees they are in danger, he runs in front of the hounds and draws them off. The Psalter and Hours of Humphrey de Bohun, 7th Earl of Hereford, are one of a group of 6 manuscripts made for the De Bohun family.

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