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Isabel (Capet) de Warenne (1080 - abt. 1131)

Isabel (Elizabeth) "Countess of Leicester" de Warenne formerly Capet aka de Vermandois, de Meulan, de Beaumont
Born in Vermandois, Francemap
Ancestors ancestors
Wife of — married about 1096 (to 1115) [location unknown]
Wife of — married after Jun 1118 [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died about in St. Nicaise, Meulan, Francemap
Profile last modified | Created 22 Jun 2011
This page has been accessed 34,847 times.



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Isabel de Vermandois, Countess of Leicester (c.1081 –- 13 Feb 1131)[1] was distantly related to English kings, Norman dukes, and Flanders counts. By Carolingian ancestry, she was also related to almost every major nobleman in Western Europe. Nevertheless, Isabel was very much her own person.[2]
Wonderfully controversial, her love life is something else. She had two husbands -- both Anglo-Norman magnates -- and a lot of kids.[3].


Isabel[4] de Vermandois Capet[5][6][7][8][9][10][11]
Birth: 13 FEB 1080/81 Valois[12][13]
Death: 13 FEB 1131[14][15][16] Sens, Saone-et-Loire, Bourgogne, France
Buried: Priory of Lewes, Sussex[1]

Buried with her husband, William de Warenne, in the Chapter House of Priory of St. Pancras (Lewes Priory), Lewes, East Sussex. He was buried there at his father's feet.

Early Life

p. Hugh Magnus[17][18] and Adele of Vermandois.[19][20][21][22]

Marriage to Robert de Meulan, 1st Earl of Leicester

m.1 (1096-1115) Robert de Beaumont, Count of Meulan (c.1046 - 05 Jun 1118)[23][24]
Elizabeth married Meulan around aged 9 or 11.[25][26] But the old count was at least 35 years her senior ... Yes. Unusual even for this time period. But he was a nobleman of some significance in France, who inherited lands from his maternal uncle Henry, Count of Meulan. He also fought his first battle with distinction at Hastings when he was only 16.[27] He didn't have an English earldom when they got married, but his younger brother was Henry de Beaumont, 1st Earl of Warwick.


The marriage produced several children, including most notably two sons who were twins (born 1104), and thus remarkable in both surviving and both becoming important noblemen. They are better known tohistorians of this period as the Beaumont twins, or as Waleran de Beaumont, Count of Meulan and his younger twin Robert Bossu (the Humpback) or Robert de Beaumont, 2nd Earl of Leicester. (Readers of Ellis Peters' Cadfael historical mystery series will find both twins mentioned frequently). Another notable child of this marriage was Elisabeth or Isabel de Beaumont, one of the youngest mistresses of Henry I of England and later mother (by her first marriage) of Richard Strongbow.
Some contemporaries were surprised that the aging Count of Meulan (b circa 1049/1050) was able to father so many children, given how busy he was with turmoil in England and Normandy from 1102 to 1110 (or later) and acting as Henry I's unofficial minister. One explanation is offered below; another might simply be an indication of his good health and energy (expended mostly in dashing from one troublespot in Normandy to England back to Normandy).
William II of England died suddenly in a purported hunting accident, and was hastily succeeded not by the expected heir but by the youngest brother Henry. This seizure of the throne led to an abortiveinvasion by the older brother Duke Robert of Normandy, followed by an uneasy truce between the brothers, followed by trouble in both England and Normandy for some time (stirred up by Duke Robert, andby an exiled nobleman Robert of Bellême, 3rd Earl of Shrewsbury). Finally, Henry invaded Normandy and in the Battle of Tinchebray (September 28, 1106) destroyed organized opposition to his takeover of Normandy and imprisoned his ineffectual older brother for his lifetime. Meulan and his brother Warwick were apparently supporters of Henry during this entire period, and Meulan was rewarded with theearldom of Leicester in 1103. By 1107, Meulan was in possession of substantial lands in three domains. In 1111, he was able to revenge himself on the attack on his seat Meulan by Louis VI of France. He avenged himself by harrying Paris.
  • Emma de Beaumont (c.1102)[28]
  • Waleran IV de Beaumont, Count of Meulan (c.1104)[29]
  • Robert de Beaumont, 2nd Earl of Leicester (c.1104)[30][31]
  • Hugh de Beaumont, 1st Earl of Bedford (c. 1106)[32]
  • Adeline de Beaumont (c.1107), m.1 Hugh IV, 4th Lord of Montfort-sur-Risle
  • Richard de Granville of Bideford (d. 1147)
  • Aubree (or Alberee) de Beaumont (b ca 1109) m. Hugh II of Châteauneuf-en-Thimerais[33]
  • Maud de Beaumont (b ca 1111) m. William Lovel,[34][35]
  • Isabel de Beaumont (b Aft. 1102)[36] m.1 Gilbert de Clare, 1st Earl of Pembroke[37][38]
  • Hervé de Montmorency, Constable of Ireland[39]

Marriage to William de Warenne

m.2 1118[15][40] William de Warenne II (c.1065 - 11 May 1138)[41][42] before 1118 France.[43][44]
Elizabeth, apparently tired of her aging husband at some point. The historian Planche says (1874) she was seduced by or fell in love with William de Warenne (c. 1071-11 May 1138).[45] It was said he wanted a royal bride, and Elizabeth met his requirements, even though she was also another man's wife.
In 1115, Warenne abducted[46] the Countess to hide their long-standing affair.[47] But eventually, the old Count of Meulan died -- supposedly of chagrin and mortification from publicly humiliation -- at the Abbey of Preaux, Normandy on 5 June 1118.[48] So Elizabeth got to marry her lover after all.
Elizabeth and Warenne had several children -- all born during her marriage to Meulan. One daughter was born when they were living out of wedlock (1115-1118). It is unclear if it was Ada de Warenne.


  • William de Warenne, 3rd Earl of Surrey and Warenne (b. 1119 1147) dau Isabelle de Warenne, Countess of Surrey m.1 William, Count of Boulogne[49]. m.2 Hamelin Plantagenet[50] Issue.[51][52]
  • Ralph de Warenne (dsp)
  • Gundrada de Warenne, (Gundred) m.1 Roger de Beaumont, 2nd Earl of Warwick. Issue.[56]
  • William de Warenne, Earl of Warenne and Surrey[57]
  • Ada de Warenne[15] (d. c.1178) m. Henry of Scotland, 3rd Earl of Huntingdon[58]

Marriage: Robert de Caen

m. Robert de Caen (b. 1046)

Later Life

The later life of Elizabeth de Vermandois is not known.
The original Vermandois arms were "checky or and sable" but there was no black tincture in early medieval heraldry until sable was discovered, being the crushed fur of this animal. A very deep indigo was used instead which faded into blue so the Vermandois arms became "checky or and azure".
The Vermandois arms were inherited by the earls of Warenne and Surrey, the Newburgh earls of Warwick, the Beauchamp earls of Warwick and Worcester and the Clifford earls of Cumberland.


  • My Royal Ancestors Ancestors of Lady Shirley Cassidy, verified and certified by the Royal Medieval Genealogy Institute of London
  • Raoul I of Vermndois Elizabeth de Vermandois is also the name of the daughter of Raoul I of Vermandois, brother to this Elisabeth or Elizabeth (d. 1131)


  1. 1.0 1.1 Roberts, Gary Boyd Selected and Introduced by Title: ENGLISH ORIGINS OF NEW ENGLAND FAMILIES Publication: Name: From NEHGS Register Three Volumes. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc. 1984
  2. Her Capetian and Carolingian ancestry was a source of pride for some of her descendants.
  3. among whose descendants are numbered many kings and some queens of England and Scotland
  4. Elisabeth or Elizabeth (EN)
  5. Ancestry Family Trees
  6. Ancestry Family Trees link
  7. Ancestry Family Trees link
  10. Weis, Page: 50-24, 83-24, 93-25
  11. Record for King of France HUGH Capet. Public Member Trees
  12. now Oise, Picardie, France
  13. Many sources give Isabel as mother of Sybil Corbet, but Sybil was born first.
  14. #S00183
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonists Who Came to America before 1700, Edition: 7th ed. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Editor: Sheppard Jr., Walter Lee. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., Baltimore, MD, 1992
  16. Weis. pp. 50-24, 83-24, 93-25
  17. Son Henry I of France and Anne of Kiev.
  18. younger brother of Philip I of France
  19. Dau. Herbert IV of Vermandois and Adele of Vexin
  20. among the last Carolingians
  21. heiress of Vermandois, and descendant of a junior patrilineal line of descent from Charlemagne. The first Count of Vermandois was Pepin of Vermandois. He was a son of Bernard of Italy, grandson of Pippin of Italy and great-grandson of Charlemagne and Hildegard.
  22. Isabel was their 3rd dau
  23. Born in Pont-Audemer, Beaumont. Normandy. Son of Roger de Beaumont and Adeliza Meulent. died in Leicestershire.
  24. Issue: 3 sons (including twin elder sons); 6 dau
  25. Planche states Elizabeth agreed willingly but this means little in the context. Despite the age difference, this was a good marriage for its time. Meulan was a respected advisor to three reigning monarchs: William II of England, Robert Curthose and Philip I of France.
  26. Medieval brides were often betrothed young - 8 being the legal age for betrothal and 12 for marriage (for women). The young betrothed wife would often go to her husband's castle to be raised by his parents or other relatives and to learn the customs and ways of her husband's family. The actual wedding would not take place until much later. Some genealogists speculate that the usual age at which a noble bride could expect the marriage to be consummated would be 14. This is consistent with the date of birth of Elizabeth's first child Emma in 1102 when she would be about 15 to 17.
  27. His parents Roger de Beaumont, Lord of Beaumont-le-Roger and Pont-Audemar and Adeline of Meulan, heiress of Meulan died long before; Roger had been a kinsman and close associate of William the Conqueror. Meulan had inherited lands in Normandy after his father died circa 1089, and had also been given lands in the Kingdom of England after his participation in the Norman conquest of England.
  28. betrothed as an infant to Aumari, nephew of William, Count of Évreux, but the marriage never took place. She probably died young, or entered a convent.
  29. Her eldest son Waleran, Count of Meulan was active in supporting the disinherited heir William Clito, son of Robert Curthose until captured by King Henry. He was not released until Clito's death without issue in 1128.
  30. granddaughter Isabella of Gloucester was first wife of King John.
  31. Robert inherited his father's English estates and the earldom of Leicester and married the heiress of the Fitzosbern counts of Breteuil.
  32. lost earldom, issue
  33. possibly son of Hugh I of Châteauneuf-en-Thimerais and Mabille de Montgomerie, 2nd dau Roger de Montgomerie, 1st Earl of Shrewsbury
  34. Also Louvel or Lupel
  35. son of Ascelin Goel, Lord of Ivri.
  36. a mistress of King Henry I of England.
  37. Issue: Richard Strongbow -- invaded Ireland 1170
  38. Isabel became a concubine or mistress at a young age; it's unclear whether her mother's own life or her eldest brother's political and personal travails played a part in this decision. Before her mother died, Isabel m. Gilbert de Clare, later (1147) Earl of Pembroke.
  39. marriage not proven
  40. Weis. pp.83-24, 93-25
  41. Lived in Sussex, England. Son of William de Warenne I and Princess Gundred of England. died in England
  42. Recent genealogists say Gundred was the Conqueror's dau. or stepdau.
  43. 3 sons and 2 dau
  44. Ancestry Family Trees [ S2295565934
  45. thwarted suitor of Edith of Scotland, Queen consort of Henry I of England.
  46. 'carried her off'
  47. There was some kind of separation or divorce between Meulan and his wife, which however did not permit her to marry her lover.
  48. He left his property to his two older sons.Both were 'carefully' educated.
  49. son of King Stephen
  50. illegitimate half-bros. of Henry II of England
  51. earls of Surrey and Warenne.
  52. Her sons by her first marriage appear to have a good relationship with their half-brother William de Warenne, 3rd Earl of Surrey although on opposing sides for much of the wars between Stephen and Matilda.
  53. inherited father's property in upper Normandy.
  54. dau William, lord of Wormgay in Norfolk
  55. William, whose daughter and sole heir Beatrice married first Dodo, lord Bardolf, and secondly Hubert de Burgh
  56. his 2nd wife
  57. expelled king Stephen's garrison from Warwick Castle; issue.
  58. younger son of King David I of Scotland, Earl of Huntingdon and Matilda or Maud, 2nd Countess of Huntingdon

See also:

  • George Edward Cokayne, "The Complete Peerage."
  • Roderick W. Stuart, "Royalty for Commoners."
  • Royal and Noble Genealogical Data. Brian Tompsett. 1994-2001, V. March 25, 2001. Department of Computer Science, University of Hull, Hull, UK, HU6 7RX,
  • Pedigrees of Some of the Emperor Charlemagne's Descendants. Volume II
  • Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonists Who Came to America Before 1700. Online publication - Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2006.
  • A Genealogical History of the Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited, and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire
  • American Genealogical-Biographical Index (AGBI). Godfrey Memorial Library, comp. Online publication - Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 1999.
  • U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900. Yates Publishing. Online publication - Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2004.
  • Pedigrees of Some of the Emperor Charlemagne's Descendants. Volume II
  • History and genealogy of the Earles of Secaucus : with an account of other English and American branches; Part III. History of the Earles of Secaucus, Chapter Seven. The Montagne Family; page 383.
  • Families Directly Descended from All the Royal Families in Europe (495 to 1932) & Mayflower Descendants.
  • Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonists Who Came to America Before 1700 by Frederick Lewis Weis, Lines: 50-24, 50-25, 53-24, 66-25, 84-25, 88-25, 89-25, 140-24, 170-23 184-4, 215-24
  • G.E. Cokayne; with Vicary Gibbs, H.A. Doubleday, Geoffrey H. White, Duncan Warrand and Lord Howard de Walden, editors, The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, Extant, Extinct or Dormant, new ed., 13 volumes in 14 (1910-1959; reprint in 6 volumes, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 2000), volume VII, page 526. Hereinafter cited as The Complete Peerage.
  • Jirí Louda and Michael MacLagan, Lines of Succession: Heraldry of the Royal Families of Europe, 2nd edition (London, U.K.: Little, Brown and Company, 1999), table 64. Hereinafter cited as Lines of Succession.
  • Obituaries, The Economist, London, U.K., 21 May 2004. Hereinafter cited as The Economist.
  • Alison Weir, Britain's Royal Family: A Complete Genealogy (London, U.K.: The Bodley Head, 1999), page 192. Hereinafter cited as Britain's Royal Family.
  • Sir Bernard Burke, C.B. LL.D., A Genealogical History of the Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited, and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire, new edition (1883; reprint, Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1978), page 569. Hereinafter cited as Burkes Extinct Peerage.
  • Keats-Rohan, K.S.B. Domesday Descendants: A Prosopography of Persons Occurring in English Documents 1066-1166, II. Pipe Rolls to Cartae Baronum. The Boydell Press, 2002. p. 767.
  • Royal Ancestry 2013 Vol. V p. 271-274

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Comments: 11

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I do not understand why this record is named Isabel (Capet) de Warenne. her name was Isabel(le) de vermandois, and she married Robert Beaumont before she married William de Warenne. Her father is clearly labeled Hugues (Capet) de Vermandois.
posted by Sharon Mosley
Sharon, her current last name, which you are referencing, is de Warenne as that was her 'most recent' name (i.e. her 2nd husband). Beaumont is listed under the OLN (other last name) field. That's how we do it . . .
I am questioning the use of Capet rather than the use of Vermandois as her name at birth. If using Warenne as her last name is the common usage here, I am fine with that, I have just never seen her referred to as Capet before.
posted by Sharon Mosley
Sorry, I'm tired and shouldn't have responded so quickly. I would agree with you on the LNAB. We have the other children as Vermandois...
Is Eleanor Beaumont really her daughter?
posted by Erik Granstrom
UNKNOWN-93295 and Capet-250 appear to represent the same person because: Please merge this unattached unknown Isabel into Capet-250 to remove the profile.
De Vermandois-446 and Capet-250 appear to represent the same person because: same person, merge needed ... the two William Warenne's shown in De Vermandois-446 are already set to merge, but the PM for this one is MIA, maybe someone can get a Leader to expedite that merge
this profile appears to have two different death dates - this google group post discusses confusion on her death:!topic/soc.genealogy.medieval/VbdYy1MmCyc[1-25]
posted by Liz (Noland) Shifflett
Capet-250 and De Vermandios-4 appear to represent the same person because: When entering spouse information for Beaumont-29 I entered the first name of Elizabeth and did not get a match, I continued entering information. When completed I went to the page and it showed a spouse of Isabel, I believe they are the same person.
De Crepi-20 and Capet-250 appear to represent the same person because: De Crepi-20 looks to be the same person as Capet-250

I believe De Crepi-20's last name at birth should be Capet-250, so propose De Crepi-20 should be merged into Capet-250 Her parents were Hugh Magnus Capet and Adelaide de Crepi

posted by Steven Ringer
De Crepi-20 and Capet-250 are not ready to be merged because: Birth and death dates require confirmation.
posted by Tim Perry

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Categories: House of Capet | Capetian House of Vermandois | House of Vermandois | This Day In History February 13