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Thomas Holland, 1st Earl of Kent 1314-1360

Also known as Thomas de Holland

Born: 1314, Broughton, Buckinghamshire, England

Christened:

Died: 28 December 1360, Normandy, France

Buried:

Parents: Robert, 1st Lord Holland, (born about 1285, Up Holland, Lancashire, England, died 7 October 1328, Boreham Wood, Essex, England (he was beheaded) and Maud De La Zouche

Siblings:

Elizabeth de Holland (born about 1295, Upholland, Lancashire, England, died about 1332, buried Badmin,Grey Friars) married (1319, Trenowyth, Cornwall, England) Oliver de Carminow (born about 1319, Trenowyth, Cornwall, England)

Margery Holland (born about 1308, Upholland, Lancashire, England) married John de la Warre

Robert Holland (born about 1312, Brackley, Northamptonshire, England, died 16 March 1372/3, Brackley, Northamptonshire, England, buried Brackley, Northamptonshire, England) married (about 1331) Elizabeth

Otho De Holland (born 1316, Brackley, Northamptonshire, England, died 3 September 1359 married Joan

John Holland of Thorpewater (born about 1318, Brackley, Northamptonshire, England, died about 1359) married (about 1350) Eleanor Metfield (born about 1320, Northamptonshire, England)

Maud (Matilda) de Holland (born about 1319, Foxhall, Staffordshire, England) married Thomas Swynnerton

Alan Holland (born about 1320, Brackley, Northamptonshire, England, died about 1339)

Elizabeth de Holland (born about 1320 Upholland, Lancashire, England) married about 1338 William Boteler (or Botiller)

Margaret (Mary) Holland (born about 1322, Brackley, Northamptonshire, England, died about 1349) married John Tempest

Jane Holland (born about 1326 Brackley, Northamptonshire, England) married Hugh Dutton (Denton)

Alianore de Holland (born about 1327, West Derby, Lancastershire, England) married (8 July 1342, Notton, Yorkshire, England) John "de Knayth" Darcy, Baron Darcy

Isabella Holland (born about 1328, Brackley, Northamptonshire, England) married John de Warrene, Earl de Warrene

Married: 1347

Spouse: Joan Plantagenet, died (7 August 1385), the 'Fair Maid of Kent', grandaughter of King Edward I and sister and sole heir of John, Earl of Kent.

Offspring:

Thomas Holland, 2nd Earl of Kent, Baron of Wake and Woodstock, (born 1354, Upholland, Lancashire, England, died 25 April 1397), Arundel Castle, Sussex, England, buried Bourne Abbey, Lincolnshire)

Edmund Holland (born before 1352, Upholland, Lancashire, England, died young)

John Holland (born about 1355, Upholland, Lancashire, England, died 9 October died 1400, Castle, Pleshey, Essex, England), Earl of Huntingdon and Duke of Exeter, married (24 August 1386) Elizabeth Plantagenet of Lancaster (born 1364, died 1428)

Joan Holland (born 1350, died after 25 December 1384) married (1366) John IV de Montfort (born 1365, died 1 November 1399), Count of Montfort, Duke of Brittany

Maud/Matilda Holland (born about 1356, Upholland, Lancashire, England, died before 13 April 1392), married 1: Hugh, Lord Courtenay (died 1377), married 2: (1380) Waleran, Count De St. Pol (born 1335, died 1415)

Heraldic Coat of Arms: azure, florettee, and a lyon rampant, gardant argent

Knight of the Garter 1348, Founder Member, Stall 14

Thomas was from a gentry family in Holland, Lancashire. In 1340 he fought in the English expedition to Flanders (including at the Battle of Sluys), and then in 1342 in Gascony with Sir John D'Artevelle to Bayonne, to defend the Gascon frontier against the French. He was in France again in 1343 and took part in Edward III's campaign of 1346 to Normandy with the retinue of the Earl of warwick. He wore a silk white eyepatch over his missing eye, and sword to wear the white eye patch until he had done great deeds of valour. At Caen the Count D'Eu and Guisues, Constable of France, and the Count De Tancarville, the Chamberlin willingly surrendered to him. They were his former comrades of crusades that he had taken part in against the Teutons and Moors. On August 26 1346 he fought at at Crecy in the vanguard under Prince Edward. In 1346-7 he served in the siege of Calais.

In 1347 he married the 12 year old princess Joan of Kent, daughter of Edmund of Woodstock and granddaughter of Edward I, and declared themselves husband and wife in front of witnesses. During his absence on foreign service, his consort contracted another matrimonial engagement with William Montacute, 2nd Earl of Salisbury (of whose household he had been seneschal). This second marriage was annulled when in 1349 Thomas went to Rome to appeal, and her previous marriage with Holland was proved to the satisfaction of the papal commissioners.

In 1346 Thomas took to his horse to save the lives of 'ladies, damsels, and cloisterers from defoiling' by the English soldiers. He took part in the defeat of the Spanish fleet near Winchelsea in 1350. In 1353, the King, with the assent of Sir Thomas Holland and the Lady Joan, his wife, assigned, as dower, to Elizabeth, the widow of John, late Earl of Kent, numerous manors and also in 1353 parliament summoned him as Baron de Holland, and writs were in successive years directed to him until 1357. In March 1354, he was appointed the King's Lieutenant and Captain in Brittany during the minority of the Duke of Brittany and the parts of Poitou adjacent to the Duchy. He stayed for the ensuing winter and a great part of the following year on that high service, in which he was succeeded by Henry, Duke of Lancaster.

In 1358, Thomas and Joan went into Normandy, where, in the next year, he obtained the custody of the Castle and Fort of St. Sauveur-le-Vicomte and of all the castles late of Geoffrey De Harcourt, including Barfleur. Iin 1359 Edward III Thomas the King's Lieutenant and Captain in Normandy jointly with Philip of Navarre and, in 1360, that office was held by Thomas alone. His brother-in-law John, Earl of Kent, died in 1360, and Holland became Earl of Kent through his wife. He was succeeded as baron by his son Thomas, the earldom still being held by his wife (though the son later became Earl in his own right). On the 20 November 1360 he was summoned to parliament as the Earl of Kent, in the following month, 28 December 1360, he died in Normandy.

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