Robert II (Ros) de Roos

Robert (Ros) de Roos (abt. 1172 - abt. 1227)

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Robert (Robert II) "Lord of Hamlake Castle, Yorkshire" de Roos formerly Ros aka de Ros [uncertain]
Born about in Helmsley, Yorkshire, Englandmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married in Haddington (East Lothian, Scotland)map
Descendants descendants
Died about in Helmsley, Yorkshire, Englandmap
Profile last modified | Created 8 Dec 2014 | Last significant change: 20 Oct 2018
21:49: Andrew Lancaster edited the Biography and Preferred Name for Robert II (Ros) de Roos. [Thank Andrew for this | 1 thank-you received]
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Categories: EuroAristo - Profiles that need work | Magna Carta | Surety Barons | Magna Carta Project Needs Re-review | Magna Carta Project Needs Source Check | Early Barony of Helmsley | Long Profiles in Need of Cleanup.

Magna Carta Surety Baron
Robert II de Roos was one of the twenty-five medieval barons who were surety for Magna Carta in 1215.
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British Aristocracy
Robert II (Ros) de Roos was a member of aristocracy in the British Isles.
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Information from Lewis Database

Titles of Robert de Roos (Royal Ancestry):

Bailiff and Castellan of Bonneville-sur-Touques in Lower Normandy
Sheriff of Cumberland 1213

Father Everard de Roos, Baron of Helmsley[1] d. 1183

Mother Roese Trusbutt[2] b. c 1151, d. bt 1194 - 29 Sep


  • Isabel of Scotland b. c 1165


  • Sir William de Roos b. c 1193, d. 1258 or 1264
  • Sir Robert de Roos, Chief Justice of the King's Bench b. b Feb 1207, d. bt 1267 - Nov 1269

Robert de Roos, Magna Carta Surety, 4th Baron Hamlake, Sheriff of Cumberland was born between 1170 and 1172 at of Helmsley & Hunsingore, Yorkshire, England; Age 13 in 1185, but of age in 1191.

He married Isabel, illegitimate daughter of William I 'the Lion', King of Scotland, Earl of Northumberland and Isabel de Avernal, circa February 1191 at Haddington, East Lothian, Scotland. They had 2 sons (Sir William; & Sir Robert).[3][4]

Robert de Roos, Magna Carta Surety, 4th Baron Hamlake, Sheriff of Cumberland died in 1227 at England; Buried in the Temple Church, London.2,3

Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Biography

by Professor Nigel Saul

"Robert de Ros (c. 1182-1226/7), kinsman through marriage of Eustace de Vesci, and the son of Everard de Ros and Roese, née Trussebut, was a Yorkshire lord, the owner of extensive estates centring on Helmsley in the North Riding of Yorkshire and Wark-on-Tweed in Northumberland. He was married, at an unknown date, to Isabella, an illegitimate daughter of William the Lion, king of Scotland, and widow of Robert III de Brus.

"In the early 1200s Robert is found co-operating actively with King John, witnessing a number of his charters, chiefly at locations in northern England, and in 1203 assisting in the king’s defence of Normandy, where by descent from his mother he held the hereditary office of bailiff and constable of Bonneville-sur-Touques in the lower part of the duchy. In 1205, however, a year of rising political tension, there are signs that his relations with the king were worsening, and John ordered the seizure of his lands and, apparently shortly afterwards, had his son taken hostage. Robert, a little later, recovered his lands, but an indication that he might have been interested in leaving England is given by his acquisition of a licence to pledge his lands for crusading. It is not known, however, if he ever actually did embark for the East.

"In 1212 Robert seems to have entered a monastery, and on 15 May that year John handed over custody of his lands to one Philip de Ulcot. His monastic profession, however, cannot have lasted for long, for on 30 January 1213 John appointed him sheriff of Cumberland, and later in the same year he was one of the witnesses to John’s surrender of his kingdom to the pope. In 1215, as relations between the king and the baronial opposition worsened, John seems to have tried to keep Robert on his side, ordering one of his counsellors to try to secure the election of Robert’s aunt as abbess of Barking. By April, however, Robert was firmly on the baronial side, attending the baronial muster at Stamford and, after June, being nominated to the committee of twenty-five.

"When war between the king and his opponents broke out towards the end of the year, Robert was active on the baronial side, forfeiting his lands as a result and suffering the capture of his son at the battle of Lincoln in May 1217. After Louis returned to France, Robert submitted to the new government and recovered most, although not all, of his lands. He witnessed the third and definitive reissue of Magna Carta on 11 February 1225. Sometime before 1226 he retired to a monastery and he died either in that year or early in 1227. At some stage he was received into the ranks of the Templars and on his death he was buried in the Temple Church in London, where a few years earlier William Marshal, the one-time Regent had been buried. An effigy in that church sometimes associated with him dates from at least a generation later.

"Robert is an enigmatic individual who had close ties with Eustace de Vesci but did not openly join the rebellion until just before Runnymede. He probably felt a conflict between his sense of loyalty to his fellow Northerners and his obligation of obedience to the king."

~ Biography courtesy of Professor Nigel Saul and the Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Committee

Old Unorganized Notes

This profile is excessively long. Please improve, making into a single, easy-to-read narrative, removing duplication, long quotes, and long extracts that could be summarized and linked to. Need Help? See Help:Biographies and Help:GEDCOM-Created_Biographies

Robert was of Helmsley and Hunsingore, Yorkshire, and Wark, Northumberland, bailiff and castellan of Bonneville-sur-Touques in Normandy, Sheriff of Cumberland. As son-in-law of King William, he was of his escort into England in November 1200 to do homage. In February 1205/6 he proposed to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. On 25 May 1205 he had livery of his share of the manor of Braunston, Northamptonshire, formerly belonging to his grandmother, Aubrey de Harcourt. In 1212 he was believed to have taken the “habit of religion” as a Knight Templar of Jerusalem, but in the following year was certainly in the King’s employment. In spite of the previous favour the King had shown him, he was one of the most active in rebellion against King John, and one of the twenty-five Guardians of Magna Carta (Magna Carta Surety) in 1215. For this he was excommunicated by Pope Innocent III, but joined with Peter de Brus and Richard de Percy, in attempting to subdue Yorkshire. All his lands in Yorkshire were granted, but he returned to his allegiance in November 1217, and his Cumberland estates were confirmed to him in 1218. He was a benefactor of Rievaulx, Newminster, Kirkham, and the Templars. He founded a hospital for lepers at Bolton, Northumberland. Robert died, or, as a Templar, retired from secular life, shortly before 23 Dec. 1226, when his son did homage for his lands.

Furfan, Robert de Ros, as a minor at his father's death was the ward of the King in 1185, when his lands were in the custody of Ranulph de Glanville. In 1190 he had livery of the lands of his Trussebut inheritance. He served as Sheriff of Cumberland 1213-15. As the son-in-law of William the Lion, King of Scotland, he was of his escort into England November 1200, to do homage. He was loyal and closely associated to King John, but was one of his most vigorous opponents in the matter of Magna Carta, being one of the 25 elected to see its provisions were obeyed. He was a benefactor of Rievaulx and Kirkham, and of the Templars, and also founded a hospital for the lepers in Northumberland. His date of death is not known, but his son and heir, William de Ros, did homage for his father's lands 23 December 1226, so whether he had died by this time, or as some speculate, as a Templar, had retired from secular life, is not known.

Sir Robert de Ros or Roos of Fursan (1177 - 11 December 1226) was the fourth baron by tenure of Hamlake manor (later associated with the barony of de Ros).

"He was a member of the Order of Knights Templar. He died in1226/7 and was buried "in his proper habit" in the Knights' Church, orthe New Temple in London, where his tomb may be seen. His effigy isdescribed by Gough, in "Sepulchral Monuments," as "the most elegant ofall the figures in the Temple Church, representing a comly young knightin mail, and a flowing mantle with a kind of cowl; his hair neatly curledat the sides; his crown appears shaved. His hands are elevated in apraying posture, and on his left arm is a short, pointed shield chargedwith three water-bougets. He has on his left side a long sword, and thearmor of his legs, which are crossed, has a ridge, or a seam up thefront, continued over the knee. At his feet is a lion, and the wholefigure measures six feet two inches..."

Magna Charta Surety Knight Templar 4th Baron of Hamlake Manor Sheriff of Cumberland

Robert de Ros, surnamed Furfan, 4th Baron Hamlake;Magna Charta Surety Baron, in the 1st Richard I [1189], paid 1,000 marks fine to the crown for livery of his lands.[5]

Read more at My Medieval Genealogy...[1]

Father of Robert de Ros of Wark on Tweed.[6]

Grandson of Robert de Ros and Sibyl de Valognes; son of Everard de Ros and Roese Trussebut; Magna Charta Surety, 1215; Knight Templar; m. Isabel; father of Sir William.[7]

Son of Everard de Ros and Roese de Trussebutt; m. Isabela of Scotland; father of William I de Ros.[8]

It was Robert de Roos, also known as Fursan, who rebuilt Helmsley Castle in stone after 1186; it is recorded in the Chartulary of Rievaulx Abbey that he 'raised the Castles of Helmislay and of Wark'. The core of the surviving castle dates from this period. Fursan levelled off the inner bank of the earthwork castle, replacing it with an enclosing stone curtain wall and round corner towers.

The great-grandson of Peter de Roos, Fursan had married Isabel, dau of the Scots king. Towards the end of his life he joined the Knights Templar (the military religious order originally founded for the protection of pilgrims in the Holy Land, and later an order of great wealth), and divided his estates between his two sons. The elder, William, received Helmsley, whilst his brother Robert was to hold Wark and estates in Scotland.[9]


1190s: 3rd Lord Roos of Hamlake; aka Furfan; son of Everard de Ros of Helmsley or Hamlake in the North Riding of Yorkshire. The family also held lands in Holderness, where was situated Ros, to which they gave, or from which they received, their name. Robert succeeded to his father's lands in 1191, paying a relief of 1000 makrs. In 1195 he was bailiff and castellan of Bonneville-sur-Touques in Lower Normandy near which the Norman lands of the family lay.[10]

1196: after a battle between men of Phillip Augustus and thos of Richard I, Richard handed over to Robert's keeping Hugh de Chaumont, a wealthy knight and intimate friend of Phillip Augustus. Robert imprisoned him in his castle of Bonneville. But his servant, the keeper of the castle, William D'Epinay, was bribed into coniving at Hugh's escape. Richard, angry at the loss of so important a prisoner, ordered D'Epinay to be hanged, and imposed a fine of 1200 marks on his master. 240 marks of this were still unpaid on 29 Jan 1204 when King John remitted 100 marks.[11]

Immediately after accession, John sent Robert and others to William the Lion of Scotland, Robert's father-in-law, to arrange an interview between the two sovereigns for 20 Nov 1199.

6 Jan 1200: king granted all honors and lands that belonged to Walter Espec (g-g-grandfather to Robert) in Northumberland, including Wark where Robert built a castle. In succeeding years he witnessed several royal charters, chiefly in north England, but on 7 Oct 1203 was at Bonneville-sur-Touques,[12] He might have been in John's service at Normandy later that year, returning to England before 22 Feb 1204, when he was at York.[13].

spring 1205: difficulty with John, possibly about the balance of his fine, and his lands were seized,[14] but an order for their restoration was soon issued.[15].

28 Feb 1206: received licence, whenever he should take the cross, to pledge his lands for money to anyone of the king's subjects any time during the following three years.[16]. (permission renewed 26 Feb 1207).

13 Feb 1207: For some reason, possibly on account of the arrears of his fine, his son Robert was in the king's hands as a hostage. Robert seems to have let prisoner Thomas de Bekering escape, and on 28 Dec 1207 was acquitted of a fine of 300 marks for his new offence.[17]

10 Apr 1209: sent with others by the king to meet the king of Scotland.[18]

1212: Robert seems to have assumed the monastic habit

  • 15 May: John therefore handed over custody of his lands to Philip de Ulecot.[19]. His profession cannot have lasted long ...

30 Jan 1213: king committed to him the forest and county of Cumberland.[20]

25 Feb 1213: on a commission to inquire into grievances for exactions of royal officers in Lincoln and York.[21] Among other royal favors he received this year was a license to send across the seas a ship laden with wool and hides to bring back wine in exchange.[22]. He interceded with the king in favor of William of Aumale, his suzerain in Holderness, and got him safe-conduct as a preliminary to a reconciliation[23].

03 Oct 1213: a witness of John's surrender of the kingdom to the pope, and one of 12 men who tried to compel John to keep promises in favor of English church[24]

1214 - early 1215: continued in John's service as Sheriff of Cumberland,

  • 10 Apr 1215: received the royal manors of Sowerby, Carleton, and Oulsby, all near Penrith in Cumberland and Westmoreland.[25] About the same time John ordered John de Roches to do all that he could to secure the election of Robert's aunt as abbess of Barking, and in no wise permit the election of the sister of Robert Fitz Walter, one of the baronial leaders[26] But John failed, despite these favours, to secure Ros's adherence in his struggle with the barons.
  • week following 19 April.: According to Roger of Wendover,[27], Ros was one of the chief "incentors of this pest" (i.e., the baronial resistance of the king) in the meeting of the magnates at Stamford. He was one of the 25 barons elected to promote observance of the Great Charter, and took part in the resistance against John after his absolution from his oath to the pope. Consequently, Innocent IV excommunicated him in January 1216.

1215: Wark Castle was burned by King John, since the owner Robert de Ros had signed Magna Carta. It was rebuilt and later held under royal control.[28]

1216: After king's success in the north earlier in the year, a castle belonging to Robert was one of the only two that remained in the possession of the barons in the north.

  • 27 Jan: John granted his lands to William, Earl of Aumale.[29] He was summoned to deliver up Carlisle Castle, and expressed his readiness to do so, merely asking for a safe conduct for an interview, which the king promised[30].
  • 12 Apr: John repeated offer but led to nothing. Robert held the government of Northumberland, and seems to have continued his resistance even after John died.

May 1217: son William was captured at Lincoln. Robert eventually submitted, and Henry III commanded his manors of Sowerby, Carleton, and Oulsby to be restored to him on 23 July 1218, and orders to different bailiffs of the king to allow him to hold his lands unmolested were issued on 22 Nov 1220.[31]

Feb 1221: summoned to help beseige and destroy Skipsea Castle.[32]

1222: seems to complain to the king that the King of Scotland was encroaching on English territory, and a commission of inquiry was appointed.[33]

  • 24 May: Whether the Sheriff of Cumberland, apparently Walter Bishop of Carlisle, delayed to restore his lands through jealousy, or they were seized again, their restoration was ordered again.

23 May 1222: king forbade same Sheriff of Cumberland to exact tallages from royal manors given to Robert.

06 Feb 1225: renewed order to give Robert seisin of these royal manors seems to indicate king's former orders disobeyed.[34]

  • 11 Feb: Robert witnessed the third reissue of the Great Charter.
  • 26 Feb: Henry ordered barons of the exchequer to deduct revenues of the royal manors given to Robert de Ros from the county firm owed by Walter Bishop of Carlisle.

before 18 Jan 1227: Robert takes the monastic habit again.[35]

  • He died that year and was buried in the Temple Church at London. In the modern era, there are reportedly no tombs or burials in Temple Church in central London. Only effigies can be seen there today.

He m. Isabella, dau. of William the Lion King of Scotland, and had by her two sons: 1. William

2. Robert, Baron Ros of Wark

He gave the manor of Ribston (West Riding of Yorkshire) to the knights templars, who established a commandery there. He also gave several houses in York to the sme order[36]. He founded the leprosery of St Thomas the Martyr at Bolton.[37]


  1. Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. III, p. 444-445.
  2. Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. IV, p. 484-486.
  3. Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. IV, p. 586.
  4. Robert de Ros is the father of Sir William de Ros (#MCP-1 Line 116-1, p. 152
  5. Magna Charta Sureties, p. 129
  6. Magna Charta Sureties, p. 132
  7. Ancestral Roots, p. 88, 148
  8. GRS 3.03, Automated Archives, CD#100
  9. Helmsley Castle, p. 24
  10. Stapleton, Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normaniae, vol I, pp. cxl, clxiv, vol II, p. lxxvii
  11. Patent Rolls, p. 38
  12. Charter Rolls, p. 111b
  13. ibid, pp. 114a, 119b; Rotuli Normaniae, p. 113
  14. Close Rolls, i 246
  15. ibid. i 31
  16. Hunter, Rotuli Selecti, p. 17
  17. Close Rolls i. 99
  18. Patent Rolls, p. 91
  19. Close Rolls, i. 116b
  20. Patent Rolls, p. 96b
  21. ibid, p. 97
  22. 9 Sep Close Rolls, i. 149b
  23. 1 Oct, Patent Rolls, p. 104b
  24. Charter Rolls, p. 195; Litene Contuarienses, Rolls Ser. i.21
  25. Close Rolls i. 194
  26. ibid. i.202
  27. ii.114
  28. Medieval Castles, Towers, Peles and Bastles of Northumberland, p. 16
  29. Close Rolls, i. 246b
  30. ibid., i.269
  31. Close Rolls, i.441
  32. ibid. i.474b
  33. ibid. i496b
  34. ibid. ii.15
  35. ibid. ii1666
  36. Close Rolls, I.117b
  37. W. Glyn Thomas
  • Charles Cawley, MedLands, Foundation for Medieval Genealogy. MedLands is a prosopography of medieval European noble and royal families.
  • MCP 1 Weis, F.L. (1999). The Magna Carta Sureties, 1215, (5th ed). Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co.,
  • Chisholm, H. (1911). "Ros (family)." The Encyclopaedia Britannica: A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, Literature and General Information, (Vol. 23, pp.720). Encyclopaedia britannica Co. Google eBook.
MEDIEVAL LANDS: A prosopography of medieval European noble and royal families by Charles Cawley © Foundation for Medieval Genealogy & Charles Cawley 2000-2018.


This page had been edited according to Style Standards adopted by January 2014. Click the Changes tab to see edits to this profile; from that list, click WikiTree IDs other than Ros-162 to see changes to those profiles prior to being merged.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to this profile.

Magna Carta Project

This profile is managed by the Magna Carta project (see this page for what that entails).
Attention Needed
  • Re-review needed (the profile needs lots of editing)
  • Source Check: First part of bio appears to be cut/paste from Marlyn Lewis's database but without attribution. Information from the database attributed to Richardson needs to be checked against Richardson (footnote style used in the database leads to misattribution).
    • Robert de Roos, "Our Royal, Titled, Noble, and Commoner Ancestors and Cousins" (website, compiled by Mr. Marlyn Lewis, Portland, OR; accessed December 24, 2017)
Gateway Ancestors
Descendants of Magna Carta surety barons who immigrated to the Americas are referred to as Gateway Ancestors. Douglas Richardson documents the ancestry of many who immigrated before 1700 in his Magna Carta Ancestry (#Richardson). WikiTree's Magna Carta project exists "to categorize and improve profiles of the twenty-five medieval barons who were surety for Magna Carta; about two hundred proven American colonial Gateway Ancestors who were their descendants; and the documented lineages that connect them." Using Richardson as its foundational source, the project has identified most Magna Carta Gateway Ancestors with profiles in WikiTree (collected in the category Gateway Ancestors).
For profiles of descendants and Gateway Ancestors of Robert II de Roos that have been improved and categorized by the Magna Carta project, see Ros-162 Descendants (see this index for links to other surety barons and category pages for their descendants).

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On 23 Apr 2018 at 00:48 GMT Liz (Noland) Shifflett wrote:

On 22 Apr 2018 at 21:18 GMT Anonymous (Lykins) Anonymous wrote:

The RF says Ros is my 23rd grandfather.Who does the checking to what point and where/how to I take over to prove the line?

On 26 Aug 2016 at 19:02 GMT Liz (Noland) Shifflett wrote:

MedLands has born 1172-73/married 1191.
  • The Rotuli de Dominabus of 1185 records “uxor Everardi de Ros que fuit filia Willelmi Trussebut…xxxv” and her land “in Strowestone”, adding that she had "ii filios, primogenitus est xiii annorum et terra eius est in custodia Ranulfi de Glanville"[867].
  • The Chronicle of Melrose records the marriage in 1191 of "the king of Scots…his daughter Ysembel (the widow of Robert de Brus)" and "Robert de Ross" at Haddington[883].

On 26 Aug 2016 at 18:59 GMT Liz (Noland) Shifflett wrote:

Thanks Sunny! I checked Richardson's Royal Ancestry (Vol. IV, p 487) and the information in the profile matches what he has (1170-72 birth based on him being 13 in 1185 & of age in 1191 when he "had livery of his lands"). Looking at the fine print in RA, I don't see an IPM referenced, so I'm not sure where the 13 in 1185 came from.

I'm a bit baffled that the article by Professor Nigel Saul, Royal Holloway, University of London for the Magna Carta Trust and Richardson don't agree on dates (Saul's article does not elaborate on why he has b 1182; he also has marriage as 'date unknown'). Richardson speaks of her margaritum in relation with her 1191 m to Robert, so it seems that documentation would be his source for 1191, but that should have been available to Saul too.

On 26 Aug 2016 at 16:38 GMT Sunny (Trimbee) Clark wrote:

FYI: the Magna Carta Trust lists de Ros with different birth dates: "Robert de Ros (c. 1182-1226/7)" making his marriage date to Isabel and her birth date seem quite off, though. [1]

On 3 Jun 2016 at 17:23 GMT Bree Ogle wrote:

Thank-you Darlene! It explains why it just wasn't adding up:)

On 1 Jun 2016 at 21:19 GMT Darlene (Athey) Athey-Hill wrote:

In searching for information re: Gervasius, I came across an old post on Gen-Medieval, which is archived here: Basically someone posted in 2005 that Gervasius married a daughter of de Ros according to Pedigrees of the County Families of Yorkshire and West Riding, by Joseph Foster, published 1874. In 2007 another person asked if that was correct, to which John Ravilious replied, "While there certainly might be a Lowther-de Ros marriage, the chronology is a problem as given. Margaret de Brus, sister and coheiress of the last de Brus lord of Kendal, likely married Robert de Ros of Wark say 1240-1250, so it seems unlikely a son in law of theirs would have been active in 1217."

On 1 Jun 2016 at 20:53 GMT Bree Ogle wrote:

PS: Thank-you Darlene and April!:)

On 1 Jun 2016 at 20:50 GMT Bree Ogle wrote:

Old sources say that a daughter (possibly Beatrice) of "Lord Ross de Kendal" -- possibly named John -- whose (meaning John) grandparents were Robert Ros, Lord Ross of Hamlake d. 1227, and Isabella, married Sir Gervasius de Lowther. ... Is there any truth to this?

On 1 Jun 2016 at 20:47 GMT Darlene (Athey) Athey-Hill wrote:

I've proposed a merge of 'son' Peter into the profile of Robert's brother, Piers. I can't locate any other Peter de Ros' to think we should keep that profile...

more comments

Robert II is 23 degrees from Elinor Glyn, 27 degrees from Frances Weidman and 20 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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