Raoul [II] de Tosny Seigneur de Tosny
Roger [I] de Tosny Seigneur de Tosny
(Abt 0990-Abt 1040)
Robert [III] de Tosny


Family Links

1. Avice

  • Nicholas de Stafford+
  • Nigel de Stafford+

Robert [III] de Tosny

  • Marriage (1): Avice 1
  • Died: 1088 1
  • BuriedMale: Evesham Abbey, Evesham, Worcestershire, WR11, GB 1

  General Notes:

ROBERT [I], son of ROGER [I] de Tosny & his [second wife Godechildis ---] (-1088, bur [Evesham Abbey]). His parentage is confirmed by the charter dated to [1130] under which Henry I King of England confirmed donations to Conches, including the donation of "ecclesiam de Octona" made by "Robertus de Stafort filius Rogerii de Totteneio" with the consent of "filio meo Nicholao". Robert´s connection with the Tosny family is confirmed by the undated charter under which "Robertus de Stafford" confirmed donations to Wotton Wawen Abbey, Warwickshire by "avus meus Robertus de Toenio et pater meus Nicolaus de Stafford". Domesday Book records "Robert of Stafford" holding Denchworth in Wantage Hundred in Berkshire; "Robert de Tosny" holding Miswell in Tring Hundred and Barwythe in Danish Hundred in Hertfordshire; "Robert of Stafford" holding land in Oxfordshire; Stoneton in Northamptonshire [Warwickshire]; numerous properties in Warwickshire; and Staffordshire. The entries in Hertfordshire precede those which record the holdings of Raoul de Tosny in Hertfordshire, which suggests that they refer to the Robert Tosny/Stafford who was Raoul´s brother. "Robertus de Stafford…monachus factus in infirmitate mea" donated Wrottesley and Loynton to Evesham abbey, for "conjuge mea et filio meo Nicholao", by charter dated 1088. "Robertus de Staffordia et Robertus filius meus et hæres" confirmed donations of property to Evesham Monastery by "Rodbertus avus meus…et pater meus Nicholaus" by undated charter.

m [AVICE de Clare], daughter of --- (-after 1088, bur [Stone priory]). A table (obviously of late composition because of the language), hanging in Stone priory at the time of the dissolution of the monasteries, names "Avice de Clare" as the wife of Robert and records their burial at Stone. It is far from certain that this information is accurate. No person of that name has yet been identified, and the name "Clare" only appears to have been used by the descendants of Robert de Brionne from the early 12th century.

Robert [I] & his wife had one child: Nicholas.

[FMG/Medieval Lands]


As has been already mentioned, the estates held in England at the time of Domesday (1086) by Ralph de Toeni were far exceeded by the broad acres of his younger brother Robert de Stafford, who must have stood high in the favour of the Conqueror, although we have no record of actual services at the Conquest. In Staffordshire he owned 81 manors, in Warwickshire 26, in Lincolnshire 20 and 4 in other counties, 131 in all. He is not however recorded as holding a manor in Stafford itself, although he owned 54 manses there, but Dugdale explains this by the fact that Stafford castle, of which he may very probably have been governor, was demolished before 1086, and the new one had not yet been built. The ground and surroundings of the old castle were held in 1086 by Henry de Ferrers.

Of Robert we have certain authentic details. That his surname was de Stafford and that he was a younger brother of Ralph ii de Toeni (he is actually called Robertus de Toenio by his grandson) are absolutely certain from the long charter already mentioned, in Gallia Christiana xi. instrr. 128-33. He must have been born not later than about 1041, and married Avice daughter of the Earl of Clare, who probably survived him. All the other notices about him are in connexion with religious houses.

He was a benefactor to Conches: he founded or re-founded the Priory of Regular Canons at Stone in Staffordshire, and granted lands to Evesham Abbey and Bordesley Abbey. The gift to Evesham was the manor of Wrottesley in Staffordshire, and the deed is dated 1072: but the abbot only became mesne tenant, since alienation of a manor held in capite was impossible, and so in the Domesday Book (1086) Wrottesley is recorded as still in Robert de Stafford's hands. There is also a second deed dated 1088, when Robert, now infirm and near his death, had become a monk at Evesham and 'pro penitentia,' at the instigation of the Bishop of Chester, 'monachus factus in infirmitate mea in eodem monasterio,' gave to the abbey not Wrottesley only but land in Loynton. It may be presumed that the donor died there in 1088 or 1089. A rhyming chronicie or table which used to hang in the Priory of Stone testified that both Robert de Stafford and his wife were buried at Stone: but the deed of 1088 proves that at that date both husband and wife intended Evesham to be their place of sepulture.

Their issue was, Nicholas the eldest, and according to all previous accounts the only, son: but there is some reason for believing them to have had a younger son named Nigel de Stafford. The male line however of Nicholas's descendants died out after a few generations, for Nicholas, who married Maude Moolte daughter of the Earl of Chester, had an only son Robert (who married Avice and died in about 1176): and Robert left only three children, Robert and Nicholas who died without issue, the former in about 1193; and a daughter Millicent, who married Hervey Bagot: and the line of Barons and Earls of Stafford (from 1444 to 1521 also Dukes of Buckingham) is derived through this female heiress by a very chequered descent, having suffered three forfeitures and at least as many extinctions.

It may be mentioned here that Dugdale in his Baronage (i. 258, cf. 266-7) represents Walkeline de Ferrers, younger brother of the Robert de Ferrers who died in 1247, as marrying 'Goda filia Roberti de Toeni.' Walkeline occurs between 1166 and 1189, but Dugdale offers no proof of such a marriage, and I cannot understand who Robert or Goda was, if the entry be correct. Neither occurs in the Placita apud Westm. T. Pasch. 13 H. 3, rot. 13 (the second roll bearing that reference : now Curia Regis Roll 102) which bears on Walkeline's descendants and mentions his name.

[The Gresleys of Drakelowe] 1

Robert married Avice.1 (Avice died after 1088 1 and was buried in Stone Priory, Stone, Staffordshire, ST15, GB 1.)


1 Charles Cawley, <i>Medieval Lands</i>.

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