Gilbert (Clare) de Clare
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Gilbert (Clare) de Clare (abt. 1180 - 1230)

Gilbert "Earl of Clare, Earl of Gloucester, Earl of Hertford" de Clare formerly Clare
Born about in Englandmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married 9 Oct 1217 [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died at about age 50 in Penros, Bretagne, Francemap
Profile last modified | Created 7 Jul 2014
This page has been accessed 47,148 times.
Magna Carta Surety Baron
Gilbert de Clare was one of the twenty-five medieval barons who were surety for Magna Carta in 1215.
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Birth and Parents

Gilbert was the son of Richard de Clare and Amice of Gloucester. He was born in about 1180.[1][2][3][4] His birth county is not known.


In 1202 Gilbert was given custody of lands at Harfleuyr and Mostrevilliers, Normandy.[1]

In 1215 Gilbert and his father joined the Barons who compelled King John to sign the Magna Carta, and he was named as one of the Surety Barons. Later that year they joined in baronial rebellion against John, and, along with other leading rebels, were excommunicated, although he took a lead role in negotiations for a resolution of the conflict. His lands were confiscated. When Louis, Dauphin of France, invaded in May 1216, Gilbert supported him. He fought on the rebel side in the second Battle of Lincoln on 20 May 1217 and was captured by his future father-in-law, William Marshal.[1] He was reconciled with Henry III by January 1217/8,[1] and his lands were restored.[2][3][4] In the autumn of 1218 he was a member of the royal Council.[1]

Gilbert fought in Wales in the 1220s. In 1225 he was present when Henry III confirmed the Magna Carta.[1][2][3]

On 5 July 1225 Gilbert paid £200 to have the wardship and marriage of Hugh Pointz, heir of Robert Bardolf.[5]

In 1227 Gilbert supported Richard, Earl of Cornwall's complaints about misgovernment by Hubert de Burgh.[1][2][3][4]

Lands and Titles

In 1211 Gilbert held 6 and a half knights' fees in Kent. These were part of his mother's maritagium.[1][2][3]

Following the death of his father in 1217, Gilbert became Earl of Gloucester and Earl of Hertford, though he is generally known as Earl of Clare.[1] He inherited substantial estates. They included extensive holdings in Gloucestershire, and Glamorgan and Gwynllŵg, Wales.[4]

He held several English baronies: Clare in Suffolk, Field Dalling in Norfolk, and Long Crendon in Buckinghamshire (a half share)[6]

Marriage and Children

On 9 October 1217 Gilbert married Isabel Marshal, daughter of William Marshal, one of the "Illustrious Men", the royal counsellors listed in the preamble to the Magna Carta, and Isabel de Clare.[1][2][3] (The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography gives a marriage date of 1214, with no sourcing: this is almost certainly a mistake.[4]) The marriage made him a brother-in-law of another Magna Carta Surety Baron, also called William Marshal. Isabel de Clare was a second cousin of his father. Gilbert deClare and Isabel Marshal had the following children:


In 1230 Gilbert took part in a military expedition in Brittany. He died at Penros, Brittany on 25 October 1230.[1][2][3][4][8] His body was brought back to England and he was buried on 11 November 1230 before the high altar of Tewkesbury Abbey,[1][2][3] with a large number of people present. His widow had a memorial stone placed there, dated 28 September 1231.[1][4] A commemorative inscription reads:[9]

"Gilbertus de Clare, nomine primus, comes Glocestrie sextus et Hertfordie quintus, obiit 25 Octobris, anno domini 1230. Magna Carta est lex, caveat deinde rex" [Gilbert de Clare, first of that name, 6th Earl of Gloucester and 5th of Hertford, died 25 October A.D. 1230. The Magna Carta is law, let the king henceforth beware."

Gilbert's two wills, dated 30 April and 23 October 1330,[1] were proved by Michaelmas 1233.[2][3]

On 6 November 1230 Hubert de Burgh, who had become justiciar of England, was awarded custody of Gilbert land and his son and heir Richard during Richard's minority.[10]

In 1231 his wife married Richard, Earl of Cornwall. She died on 17 January 1239/40.[1][2][3]


Gilbert's arms were or, three chevronels gules.[11]

Research Notes

Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Biography

For the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta in 2015, Professor Nigel Saul wrote a set of biographies of the Surety Barons. He and the Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Committee generously gave permission for them to be reproduced on WikiTree. They can be viewed here.


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 G E Cokayne. Complete Peerage, revised edition, Vol. V, St Catherine Press, 1926, pp. 694-696, Internet Archive
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 Douglas Richardson. Magna Carta Ancestry: A Study in Colonial and Medieval Families, 4 vols, ed. Kimball G. Everingham, 2nd edition (Salt Lake City: the author, 2011), Vol. I, pp. 451-460, CLARE 2, Google Books
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 Douglas Richardson. Royal Ancestry: A Study in Colonial and Medieval Families, 5 vols, ed. Kimball G. Everingham (Salt Lake City: the author, 2013), Vol. II, pp. 184-191, CLARE 6
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, entry by T A Archer, revised by Michael Altschul, for 'Clare, Gilbert de, fifth earl of Gloucester and fourth earl of Hertford', print and online 2004, revised online 2005
  5. Henry III Fine Rolls Project, 9 HENRY III, 14 June–27 October 1225, web, entry 233 (5 July 1225)
  6. I J Sanders. English Baronies, a Study of their Origin and Descent 1086-1327, Oxford University Press, 1960, pp. 35, 44 and 63
  7. Henry III Fine Rolls Project, 11 HENRY III (28 October 1226–27 October 1227), web, entry 36 (9 December 1226)
  8. William Dugdale. Monasticon Anglicanum, new diutiuin, Vol. II, London, 1819, p. 54, footnote y, Google Books: "A.D. G. de Clare comes Gloucestriae et Hertfordiae obiit in nocte sanctorum Crispini et Crispiniani apud Penros in Brittania"
  9. H J L J Massé. The Abbey Church of Tewkesbury : with some Account of the Priory Church of Deerhurst, Gloucestershire, George Bell and Sons, 1900, p. 80, Internet Archive
  10. Henry III Fine Rolls Project, 15 HENRY III (28 October 1230–27 October 1231), web, entry 18 (6 November 1230)
  11. Wikipedia: Gilbert de Clare, 5th Earl of Gloucester
  • Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Vol. 10, p. 378, entry for 'CLARE, GILBERT de, seventh Earl of Clare, fifth Earl of Hertford, and sixth Earl of Gloucester (d. 1230)', Wikisource
  • Wikipedia: Gilbert de Clare, 5th Earl of Gloucester
  • Charles Cawley. Gilbert de Clare, entry in “Medieval Lands” database (accessed 14 June 2023)
  • Weis, Frederick Lewis (with additions and corrections by Walter Lee Sheppard Jr and William R Berall). The Magna Charta Sureties, 1215, 5th edition, Genealogical Publishing Company, 1999, p. 35, line 28/2
  • For information about early baronies and earldoms, click the listed category page (see categories, below). For additional information about early baronies, see the top-level category page Early English Feudal Baronies.


Magna Carta Project

As a surety baron, Gilbert de Clare's profile is managed by the Magna Carta Project.
See Clare-673 Descendants for profiles of his descendants that have been improved and categorized by the Magna Carta project and are in a project-approved trail to a Gateway Ancestor. See this index for links to other surety barons and category pages for their descendants. See the project's Base Camp for more information about Magna Carta trails.

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Removed images recently uploaded that contained no attributions to show they were not copyright protected. Please see images. Thanks,

Jen, for the Magna Carta Project

posted by Jen (Stevens) Hutton
Same coat of arms as Richard de Montfichet.
posted by Hadley (Benson) Bensen
Thanks for mentioning this. The coats of arms are similar but different. The coat of arms on this profile has three inverted red Vs and just gold/yellow at the bottom. The Montfichet coat of arms has two inverted red Vs and an area of red at the bottom.
posted by Michael Cayley
I hope to do some work on this profile soon for the Magna Carta Project, to bring it up to current Project standards.

- now DONE

posted by Michael Cayley
edited by Michael Cayley

This week's featured connections are from the War of the Roses: Gilbert is 9 degrees from Margaret England, 8 degrees from Edmund Beaufort, 9 degrees from Margaret Stanley, 8 degrees from John Butler, 8 degrees from Henry VI of England, 9 degrees from Louis XI de France, 9 degrees from Isabel of Clarence, 8 degrees from Edward IV of York, 9 degrees from Thomas Fitzgerald, 8 degrees from Richard III of England, 9 degrees from Henry Stafford and 11 degrees from Perkin Warbeck on our single family tree. Login to see how you relate to 33 million family members.