Robert de Holland, 1st Baron Holand

For other people named Robert Holland, see Robert Holland (disambiguation).
Robert de Holland, 1st Baron Holand

Arms of Robert de Holland
Spouse(s) Maud la Zouche
Father Sir Robert de Holland
Mother Elizabeth de Samlesbury
Born c.1283
Died 1328
Buried Lancashire

Robert de Holland, 1st Baron Holand (c. 1283 – 1328) was an English nobleman, born in Lancashire.

Early life

He was a son of Sir Robert de Holland of Upholland, Lancashire and Elizabeth, daughter of William de Samlesbury.

Robert was a member of the noble Holland family and a favourite official of Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster and had been knighted by 1305. Robert was appointed on 20 December 1307 in a matter concerning the Knight Templars,[1] shortly before Edward II ordered their arrest and trials in January 1308. In October 1313 Robert was pardoned for his role in the death of Piers Gaveston.[1] From 1314 to 1321 he was called to Parliament as a Baron and was appointed as Secretary to the Earl of Lancaster.[2]

Banastre Rebellion (1315)

His favoured treatment by the powerful earl caused his rival knights in the area, led by Sir Adam Banastre, Sir Henry de Lea, and Sir William de Bradshagh (Bradshaw), to start a campaign of violence towards him and the earl's other supporters known as the Banastre Rebellion. The rebels protested against the earl's actions and authority by attacking the homes of his supporters and several castles, including Liverpool Castle. Sir Robert later assisted in the hunt for fugitives after the rebels had been routed in Preston by a force under the command of the Sheriff.

Battle of Boroughbridge (1322) & Invasion of England (1326)

On 4 March 1322 Sir Robert was ordered to join the king with horses and men to defend against Lancaster's rebellion.[1] Twelve days later Robert betrayed the king and fought alongside Lancaster at the Battle of Boroughbridge.[1]

After their defeat, Robert surrendered[1] and was imprisoned and had his lands confiscated. He was released from prison but was accused of having joined with other rebels in raids on the estates of Hugh le Despenser, 1st Earl of Winchester over the next few years.[1] Robert was again imprisoned in Warwick Castle[3] before being moved in 1326 to Northampton Castle from which he escaped.[4]


Following Queen Isabella and Roger Mortimer's overthrow of Edward II, Holland was pardoned for his escape from Northampton at the request of Henry de Beaumont;[4] his lands were restored to him on 24 December 1327.[5]

Robert still had enemies from the Banastre Rebellion though and in June 1328 they attempted to outlaw Holland for the deaths of Adam Banastre and his followers, thirteen years after their deaths.[5] Robert appealed against this but was killed[5] in October in a wood near Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire.[2] Thomas Wither is named by some as the murderer[2] and is claimed to have been a supporter of the new Earl of Lancaster, Henry[2] but in light of Robert's outlawry in June may have been a supporter of Banastre as well. Holland was beheaded, his head sent to the Earl of Lancaster at Waltham Cross and his body to Preston, Lancashire where it was buried in the church of Grey Friars.[2] The inaccuracies of some accounts of Holland suggest his rivals may have smeared him deliberately.

An Inquisition Post Mortem held in October 1328 found he held lands in Yorkshire, Derbyshire, Warwickshire, Leicestershire and London.[6]

Marriage and issue

Melbourne Castle was started by de Holland in Melbourne, Derbyshire.[7]

He married before 1309/10 (being contracted to marry in or before 1305/6) Maud la Zouche, daughter and co-heiress of Alan la Zouche, 1st Baron la Zouche of Ashby, by his wife, Eleanor de Segrave. Robert and Maud had nine children:


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Parl Writs II Digest 1834.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 Holland 1902
  3. Moor 1929
  4. 1 2 Patent Rolls 1232–1509.
  5. 1 2 3 Close Rolls 1224–1468.
  6. Cal Inq PMs VII.
  7. Melbourne Castle, Picture the Past, accessed August 2009
  8. Burke, J. (1838) A genealogical and heraldic history of the commoners of Great Britain and Ireland Oxford University pg 729(via Google)


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