Maurice de Berkeley, 2nd Baron Berkeley

Effigy of Maurice de Berkeley, 2nd Baron Berkeley (died 1326) "The Magnanimous", St Augustine's Abbey, Bristol (Bristol Cathedral)
Arms of Berkeley: Gules, a chevron between ten crosses pattée six in chief and four in base argent
Effigy of Maurice de Berkeley, 2nd Baron Berkeley (d.1326) "The Magnanimous", St Augustine's Abbey, Bristol (Bristol Cathedral). The Berkeley arms are visible on his shield
Full-view of monument

Maurice de Berkeley, 2nd Baron Berkeley (April 1271 31 May 1326), The Magnanimous, feudal baron of Berkeley, of Berkeley Castle in Gloucestershire, England, was a peer. He rebelled against King Edward II and the Despencers. His epithet, and that of each previous and subsequent head of his family, was coined by John Smyth of Nibley (d.1641), steward of the Berkeley estates, the biographer of the family and author of Lives of the Berkeleys.


He was born at Berkeley Castle, the eldest son and heir of Thomas de Berkeley, 1st Baron Berkeley (1245-1321), The Wise, feudal baron of Berkeley, by his wife Joan de Ferrers (1255–1309), a daughter of William de Ferrers, 5th Earl of Derby by his wife Margaret de Quincy, a daughter of Roger de Quincy, 2nd Earl of Winchester.


He was involved in the Scottish Wars from about 1295 to 1318. He acceded on 16 August 1308, was Governor of Gloucester 1312, Governor of Berwick-on-Tweed from 1314 which he lost to the Scots under the 1317 Capture of Berwick, Steward of the Duchy of Aquitaine 1319 and Justiciar of South Wales 1316.

He joined the Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster in his rebellion against his first cousin King Edward II and the Despencers. Also on his side in the rebellion was Roger la Zouch of Lubbesthorp, his first wife's nephew, who in January 1326 sanctioned the assassination of Roger de Beler, Baron of the Exchequer.

Marriages & progeny

He married twice:

Death & succession

Berkeley was imprisoned by the Despencers in Wallingford Castle in Berkshire (now in Oxfordshire), where he died on 31 May 1326 and was eventually buried in St Augustine's Abbey (now Bristol Cathedral) in Bristol, founded by his ancestor. He was succeeded by his eldest son Thomas de Berkeley, 3rd Baron Berkeley (born c. 1296).


External links

Peerage of England
Preceded by
Thomas de Berkeley
Baron Berkeley
Succeeded by
Thomas de Berkeley
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