Some corrections and additions to the Complete Peerage: Volume 4: De la Warr


See also "proposed" section

Volume 4, page 147:
She [Alianore, widow of Roger (la Warre), Lord la Warre (he d. 1370)] m., 2ndly, before 12 Feb. 1372/3, Sir Lewis DE CLIFFORD.

Alianore must have married Sir Lewis by 13 October 1372, when he presented Thomas La Warre to the church of Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire, the advowson of which was held by the La Warre family [Victoria County History, Lancashire, vol. 4, p. 349 citing Lichfield Episcopal Register, vol. 4, fo. 86].

[This evidence was supplied by Douglas Richardson, in November 2002.
Item last updated: 22 June 2003.]

Volume 4, page 156 (as corrected by volume 14):
He [Thomas (West), Lord la Warre (d. 1525)], m., 1stly, Elizabeth, sister and h. of Sir John MORTIMER, and da. of Hugh MORTIMER, of Mortimer's Hall, Hants, by Eleanor, da. of John CORNWALL. He m., 2ndly, Eleanor, 3rd da. of Sir Roger COPLEY, of Roughway, Sussex, by Anne, 2nd da. and coh. of Thomas (HOO), BARON HOO AND HASTINGS He d. 11 Oct. 1525, and was bur. at Broadwater, aged about 68. ...

THOMAS (WEST), LORD LA WARRE, 2nd LORD WEST, s. and h. by 1st wife, b. in Hampshire. K.B. 29 Nov. 1489, on the creation of the Prince (Arthur) of Wales. ... He m., before 24 Aug. 1494, Elizabeth, da. and coh. of Sir John BONVILE, of Halnaker, Sussex, by Katherine, da. of Sir Robert WINGFIELD.

Thomas seems to have married firstly Eleanor, a daughter of Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland (d. 1461). His subsequent wife Elizabeth Mortimer died 29 June 1502, according to his will. As she predeceased her brother Sir John Mortimer (d. 1504), it was actually her son Thomas who was (presumably) Sir John's heir (and he was later the heir of Elizabeth's mother Eleanor). Roger Copley, the father of his last wife Eleanor, was probably not a knight. Thomas died at Offington (near Worthing), Sussex. The younger Thomas West seems to have been born around 1481. Further details are given below.

A pedigree of the Percy family, apparently compiled in the 1480s, shows Eleanor, a daughter of Henry Percy [d. 1461], having married a Lord de la Warr ("domino de la Ware") [Surtees Society, vol. 144, pp. 19-20 (1930), from MS Ashmole 831]. Previous proposals that her husband was Thomas's father or grandfather are mentioned by the Complete Peerage (p.155, note c), which refers to a statement that Eleanor was mentioned in her father's will, dated 1 November 36 Henry VI [1457], as unmarried [citing Collins Peerage, vol.2, p.373 (1779 edn)]. It is pointed out that these identifications are clearly wrong, as Thomas's grandfather was dead before that date, and his father was already married to the wife who survived him.

Therefore, unless the Percy pedigree is mistaken, Thomas must have been married to Eleanor Percy before, by around 1480, marrying Elizabeth Mortimer. (However, note that in his will Thomas provides for prayers for the soul of Elizabeth and for the soul of his living wife Eleanor, but makes no mention of any other wife [PCC 2 Porche; PRO PROB11/22, fo.11].)

Thomas's will also states that "sith the death of my said wife [Dame Elizabeth] is nowe expired xxiij yeres at Saint Peters day the appostell last past". The will is dated 8 October 17 Henry VIII [1525], so this implies that Elizabeth died 29 June 1502.

Elizabeth's brother, Sir John Mortimer, was living 2 March 1503/4 [Calendar of Close Rolls 1500-1509, p.132] but was dead by 12 November 1504 [Calendar of Patent Rolls 1494-1509, p.386]. Elizabeth's mother Eleanor, after her remarriage to Richard Crofte, died 23 December 1519, and her heir was found to be the younger Thomas West [PRO C142/34, no 63].

In a detailed study of the Copley family [The Genealogist, new series 33, pp.73-80 (1917)], V.C. Sanborn concluded that Eleanor Copley's father Roger, who died between 1482 and 1488, was referred to as a knight only in later pedigrees, not in contemporary records.

In the elder Thomas's inquisition post mortem, taken 3 October 1526, it is said that he died at Offyngton, Sussex, 11 October 27 [sic, but must be an error for 17] Henry VIII [1525], and that at the time of his death his son and heir Thomas was aged 40 years and more [PRO C142/45, no 100]. In Eleanor Crofte's inquisition post mortem, taken 6 February 1519/20, he was said to be aged 38 years and more [PRO C142/34, no 63]. If the former is a "round figure" and the latter an exact one, that would place Thomas's birth in 1481 or 1482. Perhaps the true date is a little earlier, as he was married before 24 August 1494. However, there are other known cases of boys under the age of 10 being made Knights of the Bath (see, e.g., Complete Peerage, vol.2, p.390, vol.11, p.706 and vol.12, part 1, p.461).

[Thanks to David Paul Meyer, Leo van de Pas, Tim Powys-Lybbe, Douglas Richardson and Adrian Channing for helpful contributions.]