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John De Vere, Earl of Oxford, 20th Great-Grandfather

September 19, 2016 , , , , ,

Siege of Rheims

Siege of Rheims

My 20th great-grandfather was the 7th Earl of Oxford, hereditary Chamberlain of England.  He was son and heir to Sir Alphonese de Vere and Joan Foliot, grandson of Sir Robert de Vere and Alice de Sanford, Sir Jordan Foliot and Margery Newmarch.  He was husband of Maud de Badlesmere, daughter of Bartholomew Badlesmere and Margaret de Clare, widow of Robert FitzPayne. They were married before 27 March 1336 and had four sons and three daughters.  John was a captain in King Edward III’s army, and as such participated in the Battle of Crécy and the Battle of Poitiers.

John de Vere, 7th Earl of Oxford (c. 12 March 1312 – 24 January 1360) was the nephew and heir of Robert de Vere, 6th Earl of Oxford. He succeeded as Earl of Oxford in 1331, after his uncle died without issue. John de Vere was a trusted captain of Edward III in the king’s wars in Scotland and France, and took part in both the Battle of Crécy and the Battle of Poitiers. He died campaigning in France in 1360. Throughout his career he was closely associated with William de Bohun, 1st Earl of Northampton, who was his brother-in-law.

Hedingham Castle in Essex, John de Vere's main residence

Hedingham Castle in Essex, John de Vere’s main residence


John de Vere was the only son of Alfonso de Vere, and Jane, daughter of Sir Richard Foliot. Alfonso was a younger son of Robert de Vere, 5th Earl of Oxford, and brother of Robert de Vere, 6th Earl of Oxford. When the younger Earl Robert’s son died without issue in 1329, the earl obtained licence from the king to entail his estates on his nephew, John.  It was in this way that John de Vere, when his uncle died 17 April 1331, became Earl of Oxford. He had made homage and received livery by 17 May.

In 1336 he married Maud, who was the second of the four daughters of Bartholomew de Badlesmere, 1st Baron Badlesmere, of Badlesmere in Kent and Margaret de Clare. Maud was a co-heiress of her brother Giles de Badlesmere, 2nd Baron Badlesmere. When Giles died in 1338, this brought a significant part of the Badlesmere inheritance into de Vere’s hands. The marriage also forged a strong bond with William Bohun, Earl of Northampton, who had married Badlesmere’s third daughter, Elizabeth de Badlesmere and thus became Oxford’s brother-in-law.The two campaigned together, sat on the same commissions and died the same year.

De Vere’s military career began with service on Edward III’s Scottish campaigns, in the 1330s Second War of Scottish Independence. He took part in the Roxburgh campaign of 1334–5, and in the summer campaign of 1335.   Later in the decade, England’s military efforts turned towards France, with the beginning of the Hundred Years’ War. In March 1340, de Vere served in Flanders, and was therefore out of the country during Edward’s disputes with Archbishop John de Stratford. Oxford was not forced to take sides in the conflict, and has been described as a “political neutral”.

After a period in England, de Vere returned to the Continent in 1342, where he served with Northampton, who had been made lieutenant of Brittany. They both took part in the Battle of Morlaix that year. The next year the two earls were sent to Scotland to relieve Lochmaben Castle, and in 1345 they were again campaigning in Brittany. Tradition has it that, returning to England, their ships were forced ashore by bad weather, and the party was robbed of their possessions by the locals.  In the summer of 1346 de Vere was campaigning with the king in Normandy, and took part in the Battle of Crécy. According to the chronicler Froissart, de Vere was fighting with the Black Prince, and was among the captains who sent a request to Edward III for reinforcements when the king famously answered ‘Let the boy win his spurs’.  Oxford was also at the Siege of Calais, but reportedly fell ill in 1348, and did not take part in any major campaigning until 1355.

In 1355 he was again in the company of the Black Prince, and took part in the prince’s great raid in Languedoc. 19 September 1356, at the Battle of Poitiers, Oxford was in command of the vanguard together with the earl of Warwick. de Vere’s attack on the flank of the French cavalry, with a group of archers, did much to secure the English victory.  His last campaign was Edward III’s Rheims campaign in 1359–60. Here he died, probably during the raid into Burgundy, on 23 or 24 January 1360.  He was buried in the de Vere family’s burial place Colne Priory in Essex.

Maud de Vere died in 1366. The couple had four sons and two daughters. The eldest son, John, married the daughter of Hugh Courtenay, Earl of Devon, but died before his father, in 1350. Also another son, Robert, died in his father’s lifetime. The oldest remaining son was then Thomas, born around 1336–7, who succeeded his father in 1360. Thomas’s son Robert succeeded at his father’s death, but with Robert’s forfeiture in 1392, the earldom was given to Robert’s uncle Aubrey – the seventh earl’s fourth son. The eldest daughter, Margaret, married three times, while of the second, Matilda, little is known.

John de Vere, in the family tradition of the “fighting de Veres”, was active in almost all major military engagements in the years from 1340 to 1360.  On the Roxburgh campaign he brought a retinue of twenty-eight men-at-arms and twelve mounted archers. In Brittany in 1342, the retinue had grown to forty men-at-arms, one banneret, nine knights, twenty-nine esquires, and thirty mounted archers.  His retinue was of a diverse composition, and also included foreign mercenaries.[10] At one point, in the Battle of Poitiers, John Hawkwood, who was later to make his fortune as a condottiero in Italy, also served with de Vere.   Yet in spite of this, de Vere never distinguished himself particularly as a military commander. Neither did he receive a great amount of royal patronage, and was never made a member of the Order of the Garter. This was largely a consequence of the de Vere family’s relatively modest resources among the English peerage. As an example can be mentioned that in the late 1340, £349 were owed to Oxford in arrears for his services, yet at the same time the king owed Northampton two debts of £782 and £1237.  This obstacle of resources and status John de Vere was unable to overcome either by marriage or warfare.

from John de Vere, 7th Earl of Oxford
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


John de Vere (1311 – 1359)
20th great-grandfather
Margaret De Vere (1340 – 1398)
daughter of John de Vere
Margaret De Lovaine (1372 – 1408)
daughter of Margaret De Vere
Thomas St Clair (1394 – 1434)
son of Margaret De Lovaine
Edith StClair (1425 – 1472)
daughter of Thomas St Clair
Alice Harcourt (1450 – 1526)
daughter of Edith StClair
Elizabeth Bessiles (1465 – 1511)
daughter of Alice Harcourt
Anne Fettiplace (1496 – 1567)
daughter of Elizabeth Bessiles
Mary Purefoy (1533 – 1579)
daughter of Anne Fettiplace
Susanna Thorne (1559 – 1586)
daughter of Mary Purefoy
Gov Thomas Dudley (1576 – 1653)
son of Susanna Thorne
Anne Dudley (1612 – 1672)
daughter of Gov Thomas Dudley
John Bradstreet (1652 – 1718)
son of Anne Dudley
Mercy Bradstreet (1689 – 1725)
daughter of John Bradstreet
Caleb Hazen (1720 – 1777)
son of Mercy Bradstreet
Mercy Hazen (1747 – 1819)
daughter of Caleb Hazen
Martha Mead (1784 – 1860)
daughter of Mercy Hazen
Abner Morse (1808 – 1838)
son of Martha Mead
Daniel Rowland Morse (1838 – 1910)
son of Abner Morse
Jason A Morse (1862 – 1932)
son of Daniel Rowland Morse
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
son of Jason A Morse
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
son of Ernest Abner Morse
Pamela Morse
You are the daughter of Richard Arden Morse

  • EO7 – John de Vere, 7th Earl of Oxford (1313 – 1360)

John de Vere, 7th Earl of Oxford and 8th Great Chamberlain, born in 1313, became one of the most famous “Fighting Earls of Oxford,” renowned for bravery, gallantry, and chivalry as one of Edward III’s greatest generals, serving in Scotland, France, Flanders, Brittany and Gascony.

John was the son and heir of Sir Alfonso de Vere (d. 1328) [younger brother of Robert de Vere, EO6] by his wife Jane, daughter of Sir Richard Foliot. John succeeded his uncle, who left no issue, in April 1331. John EO7 actively participated in the wars of King Edward III’s, fighting in the Scottish campaigns of 1333 and 1335, in support of Edward Baliol. When war broke out with France in 1339, EO7 accompanied King Edward III to Flanders, and, in 1342 joined the first Breton campaign of William de Bohun, earl of Northampton. EO7 had, in his war party, 40 men-at-arms, one banneret, nine knights, 29 esquires, and 30 mounted archers, with an allowance of 56 sacks of wool as wages. On one occasion, when EO7 was returning from fighting on the continent, his ship was driven off course and wrecked on the shores of Connaught where some ‘barbarous people’ robbed the party of all of their possessions. [A similar encounter with pirates happened 200+ years later to the 17th Earl of Oxford upon his return from Italy and France in 1576). John de Vere, EO7, was a commander at the battles of Crecy, where he fought with a contingent of 160 men, including three bannerets and 27 knights. In October 1355, EO7 returned to France, joining the Black Prince in his famous raid into the Languedoc. EO7 shared the command of the first division at Poitiers with the Earl of Warwick, where he organized a crucial maneuver that saved the English archers from being downtrodden by the enemy’s cavalry.
“Yet all courage had been thrown away to no purpose, had it not been seconded by the extraordinary Gallantry of the English Archers, under the earl of Oxford, who behaved themselves that day with wonderful Constancy, Alacrity and Resolution ”
John de Vere, EO7, was killed during the siege of Rheims on January 24, 1360, during the British invasion of Burgundy. His corpse was brought back to England and interred in the family crypts at Colne Priory.

John’s will, dated November 1, 1359, contained bequests to Colne church and to the chapel (called the New Abbey) at Hedingham. EO7 also left instructions to his executors to pay out 400 marks sterling that had been accumulated by his ancestors in aid of the Holy Land.
John EO7 had married, in 1336, Maud Badlesmere [b. 1310, widow of Robert Fitzpayne], second sister and coheir of Giles, lord Badlesmere (d. 1338) of Badlesmere in Kent. The couple had had four sons and one daughter, Margaret or Maud. The sons were Thomas (1337-1371), the 8th Earl of Oxford, Aubrey, who became 10th EO in 1393, and John and Robert, who predeceased their father.
By EO7’s marriage, the title of Lord Badlesmere was added to the honorific employed by all later Earls of Oxford. His son Thomas succeeded him.

By Robert Brazil © copyright 2003

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Cousin Pamela,
We share another common Ancestor!
Cousin Rick

Sir John de Vere, 7th Earl of Oxford, Master Chamberlain of England (1311 – 1359)

17th great-grandfather
Margaret de Vere (1336 – 1398)
daughter of Sir John de Vere, 7th Earl of Oxford, Master Chamberlain of England
Margaret Lovayne (1372 – 1408)
daughter of Margaret de Vere
Richard Chamberlayne, Esq. (1392 – 1439)
son of Margaret Lovayne
Richard Chamberlayne, Esq. (1436 – 1496)
son of Richard Chamberlayne, Esq.
Anne Chamberlayne ( – 1510)
daughter of Richard Chamberlayne, Esq.
Bridget Raleigh (1506 – 1540)
daughter of Anne Chamberlayne
Elizabeth Cope (1529 – )
daughter of Bridget Raleigh
Erasmus Dryden (1553 – 1632)
son of Elizabeth Cope
William Dryden (1592 – 1660)
son of Erasmus Dryden
William Dryden (1638 – 1685)
son of William Dryden
John Dryden (1665 – 1725)
son of William Dryden
David Dryden (1700 – 1772)
son of John Dryden
William Dryden ( – 1816)
son of David Dryden
David Henry Hugh Dryden (1778 – 1814)
son of William Dryden
Pinckney Wakefield Dryden, M.D. (1807 – 1880)
son of David Henry Hugh Dryden
Luella Dryden (1854 – 1928)
daughter of Pinckney Wakefield Dryden, M.D.
Ethel Evans (1887 – 1981)
daughter of Luella Dryden
Ethel Bennett (1917 – 2013)
daughter of Ethel Evans
Frederick Edward Rehfeldt
You are the son of Ethel Bennett

Liked by 1 person

frederick e rehfeldt

September 20, 2016

We meet again Cousin Rick. I am sure I have these particular De Veres somewhere else in my tree. I have not found and or verified the other branches, but am sure I have seen these people before, around the Tudors. Thanks for checking in, dear cousin.


Pamela Morse

September 20, 2016

So I found a load of them who come down through the Howards, to Anne Dudley, and were beheaded by various monarchs of England…bloody hell…Tower and all


Pamela Morse

September 20, 2016

Great family tree history Pam! It’s fascinating how much your family tree is intertwined with one another!


Stevie Wilson (@LAStory)

September 25, 2016

This was my grandparent as the Devere name became Drayton and now Dryden.I know all my grandparents names from the last 1,000 years. Sounds silly but true.My name is Christopher Scott Dryden born 1971 in south Georgia USA.


Chris dryden

August 24, 2021

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