After the execution of Waltheof, Earl of Huntingdon, King William offered Judith, his niece, the deceased earl's widow, in marriage to Simon St. Liz, a noble Norman, but the lady peremptorily rejected the alliance, owing, Dugdale says, to St. Liz's halting in one leg, which refusal so displeased the Conqueror that he immediately seized upon the castle and honour of Huntingdon, which the countess held in dower, exposing herself and her dau. to a state of privation and obscurity in the Isle of Ely and other places, while he bestowed upon the said Simon St. Liz the town of Northampton and the whole hundred of Falkeley, then valued at £40 per annum, to provide shoes for his horses. St. Liz thus disappointed in obtaining the hand of the Countess of Huntingdon, made his addresses with greater success to her elder dau., the Lady Maud, who became his wife, when William conferred upon the said Simon de St. Liz, the Earldoms of Huntingdon and Northampton. [Sir Bernard Burke, Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited, and Extinct Peerages, Burke's Peerage, Ltd., London, 1883, p. 467-8, St. Liz, Earls of Huntingdon]
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Countess Judith (born in Normandy between 1054 and 1055, died after 1086), was a niece of William the Conqueror. She was a daughter of his sister Adelaide of Normandy, Countess of Aumale and Lambert II, Count of Lens.
In 1070, Judith married Earl Waltheof of Huntingdon and Northumbria. They had three children, the eldest daughter, Maud, brought the earldom of Huntingdon to her second husband, David I of Scotland.
In 1075, Waltheof joined the Revolt of the Earls against William. It was the last serious act of resistance against the Norman conquest of England. Judith betrayed Waltheof to her uncle, who had Waltheof beheaded on 31 May 1076.
After Waltheof's execution Judith was betrothed by William to Simon I of St. Liz, 1st Earl of Northampton. Judith refused to marry Simon and she fled the country to avoid William's anger. He then temporarily confiscated all of Judith's English estates.
Judith founded the Abbey at Elstow Bedfordshire in about 1078. She also founded churches at Kempston and Hitchin.
She had land-holdings in 10 counties in the Midlands and East Anglia. Her holdings included land at:
The parish of Sawtry Judith in Huntingdonshire is named after the Countess.
From the Domesday Book
In POTONE Hugh holds ½ virgate of land from the Countess. Land for 1 plough; it is there, with 1 smallholder. The value is and was 5s; before 1066, 2s. Earl Tosti held this land in Potton, his manor.
Countess Judith holds POTONE herself. It answers for 10 hides. Land for 12 ploughs. In lordship 3½ hides; 3 ploughs there. 18 villagers and 2 Freemen with 8 ploughs; a ninth possible. 13 smallholders and 3 slaves. 1 mill, 5s; meadow for 12 ploughs; pasture for the village livestock. In total, value £12; when acquired 100s; before 1066 £13. King Edward held this manor; it was Earl Tosti's. There were 4 Freemen who had 1 hide and 1 virgate; they could grant to whom they would.
In (Cockayne) HATLEY Countess Judith holds 3 hides and 2½ virgates as one manor. Land for 6½ ploughs. In lordship 1 hide and ½ virgate; 2 ploughs there. 8 villagers with 4½ ploughs; woodland, 4 pigs. Value £6 5s; when acquired 100s; before 1066 £6. Earl Tosti held this manor. It lies in Potton, the Countess' own manor. A Freeman had 1 virgate; he could grant and sell, and withdraw to another lord.
Ranulf brother of Ilger holds EVERTON from the Countess. It answers for 5 hides. Land for 5 ploughs; 2 ploughs there; 3 possible. 4 villagers; 5 smallholders. Meadow for 1 plough. Value £3; when acquired 100s; as much before 1066. Earl Tosti held this manor. It lay in Potton, the Countess' own manor.
•Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonists Who Came to America Before 1700 by Frederick Lewis Weis, Lines 98A-23, 130-25.
From Medieval Lands database:
JUDITH (1054-after 1086). JUDITH de Lens, daughter of LAMBERT de Boulogne Comte de Lens & his wife Adelais de Normandie (1054-after 1086).
Her marriage is recorded by Orderic Vitalis who calls her the king's "consobrina". A manuscript records that “Juditha comitissa…uxor Waldevi comitis Huntingdon, et neptis Gulielmi Conquestoris” founded Elstow priory.
Her parentage is further clarified by the foundation charter of Saint-Martin d´Auchy narrates the church´s foundation by “Guerinfrido qui condidit castellum…Albamarla” and names “Engueranni consulis qui filius fuit Berte supradicti Guerinfridi filie et Adelidis comitisse uxoris sue sororis…Willelmi Regis Anglorum” and “Addelidis comitissa supradicti Engueranni et supradicte Adelidis filia…Judita comitissa domine supradicte filia”.
The Vita et Passio Waldevi Comitis records that “Waldevus” married “rex Willelmus…neptem suam Juettam filiam comitis Lamberti de Lens, sororem…Stephani comitis de Albemarlia”. A manuscript records that “Juditha comitissa…uxor Waldevi comitis Huntingdon, et neptis Gulielmi Conquestoris” founded Elstow priory. Her marriage is recorded by Orderic Vitalis who calls her the king's "consobrina". Orderic Vitalis says Waltheof's marriage with Judith was arranged by King William "to strengthen the bonds of friendship" with her future husband. She deposed against her husband when he was accused of involvement in the conspiracy of the Earls of Norfolk and Hereford in 1075.
m (1070) WALTHEOF Earl of Huntingdon, son of SIWARD Earl of Northumbria & his wife Ælfled of Northumbria (-executed St Giles's Hill, Winchester 31 May 1076, bur Crowland Abbey).
In Domesday, founded nunnery of Elstow, near Bedford
Also see "My Lines" ( http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~cousin/html/p63.htm#i8094 ) from Compiler: R. B. Stewart, Evans, GA ( http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~cousin/html/index.htm ) -------------------- -------------------- BIOGRAPHY: event in Bedfordshire, England. ·founded the Nunnery of Elstow, near Bedford event in 1086. ·recorded in the Domesday book as "Judith the Countess" and to have held estates in many counties, most of them apparently gifts from the King, her uncle, and held Huntingdon in dower ·a daughter of Adelaide of Normandy by a second marriage to Lambert of Lens rather than a posthumous daughter of her first husband Enguerrand of Ponthieu
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