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Gernet Family of France

I have recently received significant help on the translations from the French, below, from Jean-Pierre Chartier, a fellow researcher. He has also provided a number of comments, which I have included as possible. Thanks JP!

I have identified a family living in France in the 11th century that were the origin of the Gernet family of England. They may find their earliest origins to the east, in a region known as the Chartrain, that district around the city of Chartres, in the old county of Blois. I believe that in the 11th century some member of the family moved into the region around Fécamp, and became a vassal of the Duke of Normandy and later of the Abbey church.

The Gernet/Grenet name in France has many derivations.

"Comme l'a remarqué Maver, on ne peut, pour le sud de la France, savoir si l'on a affaire à un masculin Bélenu ou à un féminin Bëlena plutôt: l'orthographe habituelle, cependant, fait pencher vers la première solution. Pour ce qui regarde la Suisse, le nom de Baiuoç représente certainement un masculin, alors que Bienne remonterait à un féminin : il semble qu'il en est de même de la plupart des Beaune, Baulne et autres qui foisonnent en France.

Une autre épithète d'Apollon, fréquente en particulier chez les liduens et les Trévires 2, est celle de Grannus, qui n'a pas encore été expliquée avec certitude '. « Le nom latin d'Aix- la-Chapelle, Aquae Granni — a écrit M. Toutain — atteste les étroites relations qui existaient entre Apollo Grannus et les eaux minérales qui jaillissent près de la ville » 4. Il est possible que ce soit un dérivé de Grannus au moyen du suff1xe -ïttu qui soit à la base du nom du cours . . . vaudois le Grenet, qui prend sa source dans le nord du Jorat et qui se jette dans la Broye.

Ce n'est pas chose aisée que de voir clair dans les formes anciennes de ce nom. D'après Jaccard *, nous en posséderions deux d'antiquité respectable : une graphie Granetum de 1140, et un Grinet de 1155. La première a été trouvée par cet auteur — il l'a mal copiée d'ailleurs — dans un travail de Fréd. de Gingins* : mais il n'existe de cet acte de 1140 qu'une copie du xv1e siècle ' qui donne : « usque ubi quidam rivus cadit in aquam Granet », comme le texte imprimé, Quant à la forme de 1155, Jaccard l'a tirée du Cartulaire de l'abbaye de Hautcrét, qui imprime : « ab aqua scilicet Grinet usque Sarviacum . . . Ex altera vero parte Grenet », Mais le manuscrit du cartulaire donne une orthographe différente : « ab aqua silicet Grennet usque Saluiacum . . . Ex altera vero parte Grennet », formes qui sont devenues Grinet et Grenet dans une copie du xv siècle qui est sans doute celle qui a servi de base à l'éditeur. Par ailleurs, dans le courant du xvi siècle, le nom de ce ruisseau est très fréquemment cité dans des actes notariaux, sous les formes Grenet, Grinet, Guernet aussi : ces graphies en -i- ne sont que des notations approximatives du é existant aujourd'hui encore. Quant à la forme ancienne la plus sure, soit le Grennet donné par le cartulaire pour 1155, il est difficile de dire exactement ce qu'elle représentait : mais elle ne parait pas s'opposer à une étymologie Grannittu. Par contre, le nom d'autres ruisselets vaudois, comme le Grenier ou Greny, qui coule à Coppet, le Grenay ou Greney, qui passe à Mathod près d'Yverdon, semble avoir une autre origine : M. Hubschmied, dans une étude récente, y voit un dérivé d'un mot gaulois griano (irl. grian, gall. graian, bret. grouan) « gravier », soit un Grianakos, « le pierreux », identique comme formation . . . " [pg 43-44] - from "Revue Celtique", 1934

See Grinet and Guernet below. The "Dictionnaire des noms" by Lorédan Larchey and Étienne Lorédan Larchey, lists Gernet as a form of Guerinet, and links Guernard, Guernault, Guerne, Guernet, Guernier, and Guernon as derivatives of the same source, Guerin, and as 2nd forms, Grenard, Grenault, Grenet, Grenier, and Grenon. Jean-Pierre Chartier notes,
"Metathesis (the inversion of letters) is quite common. A “brouette” (wheelbarrow) was pronounced “berouette” in local speak up to the middle of the 20th century. Old French “formage” has become “fromage” (cheese), “berbis” has become “brebis” (ewe), “groumet” (valet in charge of carrying the wine, from the Dutch “grom” young man, which has given the English word “groom”) has become “gourmet”. In Barjouville, an area called “La Troche”(troche = clump of trees) is to-day “La Torche”, in part because the earlier word has disappeared from the language and the other is well-known."
I should mention here that my wife's favorite French phrase is quel fromage, "what cheese." It's a joke based on the musical comedy "Good News" in which a character tries to act "high-class" by using French phrases, but does so incorrectly. She, of course, meant to say quel dommage, "what a shame."

The Gernets of Fécamp

Let me discuss this Norman part of the family first since most of the relevant citations I have found deal with them. Later I will try to show why I think they came from outside of Normandy.

I find this family fascinating because while Fécamp is today just a fishing village and minor tourist destination on the Norman coast, in the 11th century it was at the heart of Norman social, religious and political life.


The town is located at the mouth of the Valmont river where the river carved a notch, or valleuse, in the undulating chalk plateau of the Pays de Caux.

"From Dieppe to Le Havre the coast presents an uninterrupted cliff, about a hundred metres high and straight as a wall. Here and there that great line of white rocks drops sharply and a little, narrow valley, with steep slopes, shaved turf and maritime rushes, comes down from the cultivated plateau towards a beach of shingle where it ends with a ravine like the bed of a torrent. Nature has made these valleys; the rains of storms have ended with them in the shape of these ravines, trimming what was left of the cliff, excavating down to the sea, the bed of waters which acts as a passage for mankind. Sometimes, a village is snuggled into these valleys, where the wind of the open sea is devoured." - from "Gil Blas" by Guy de Maupassant
The cliff, or falaise, to the north of Fécamp, called the Cap Fagnet, forms the highest point in Normandy and provides a panoramic view of the Channel. Caux means lime in the Norman language and the locals, known in pre-Roman times as the Calétes, speak a dialect known as Cauchois. The region is sometimes referred to as the "Cote d'Albatre," the Alabaster coast. It is interesting geologically in that it so clearly matches the chalk cliffs of Dover. Dover and Fécamp are at either end of the ancient land bridge that once connected England with the continent.

The village dates to Roman times and the remains of a Gallo-Roman cemetary have been found at the eastern end of the Queue du Renard. It was in 915, however, that the village rose to prominence when William Longsword, the son of Rollo, the first Duke of Normandy, chose Fécamp as the site of his fortress-palace, the ruins of which still stand, sprawling up the valley slopes to the south. In 1120 Archbishop Baudry wrote of Fécamp,

"This place is like an earthly paradise, situate in a fine valley between two hills, the sea being near at hand, and full in sight; a stream of limpid water, too, waters the valley, fertilising gardens, filling fountains, watering orchards . . . The little river which flows through the fortress loses itself in graceful bends, which protect the ramparts and the fortifications." - from "The Ecclesiologist," 1849, and "The Life, Letters, and Sermons of Bishop Herbert de Losinga" by Edward Meyrick Goulburn and Henry Symonds
Opposite the palace is the Benedictine abbey of the Holy Trinity, which was built by William's son, Richard I, "the Fearless." Richard I and his sons, Robert and Richard II, "the Good," as well as Richard II's son, William, are buried in the abbey church. The church has therefore been called the Saint Denis of the Dukes of Normandy. The Benedictine distillery where the liqueur is made is on the Rue Alexandre-le-Grand, named for an abbot.

In 1035 Duke Robert, the father of the Conqueror, planned the conquest of England, supposedly on behalf of the English rulers deposed by Canute, and marshalled his fleet at Fécamp. A battle was avoided when a storm damaged and dispersed Robert's forces.

Fécamp was a major seaport from the 12th to the 17th centuries, when Le Havre superceded it. The port was dredged and modernized in the 19th century, obliterating the ancient contours of the river's mouth. Before that time nothing stood on the north side of the river and the town was still surronded by farm land.

"The plateau's exposure to the winds of the sea may account for one of the features of the rural architecture of the region; the plain, unadorned farmhouses in farmsteads, typically enclosed by high earth banks, walls and a sheltering square of trees." - from Answers.com

The view to the south.

I do not have anything like a father-to-son descent for this Norman family, but member's names recur in documents dated from circa 1088 to 1218 as land-owners, knights and barons in and around Fécamp. Later, their names appear in Rouen, in Normandy, and Picardy and other counties to the north.

(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050)
(-1) Guerinet or Le Grenetier (c1020)

First, the following reference, which catalogs the people mentioned in the Domesday Survey of 1086, indicates that Willelmus Gernet held land in England, in the Hundred of Cleyle [Cleyley] in Northamptonshire.

"The Northamptonshire Survey
Hundredum de Cleyle
. . .
In Forhoue
[Furtho]Walterus ii hid'. de feodo Ricardi filii Willelmi. Ibidem. Willelmus Gernet vii paruas uirgatas de feodo de Berkamstede. Ibidem. comes Leyestrie iii paruas uirgatas." - from "Domesday People: Domesday Book" by K.S.B. Keats-Rohan

[Translation:] "In Forhue Walter 2 [hides?], fee of Richard son of William. Ibid. William Gernet 7 small virgates of the fee of Berkamstede. Ibid. Count of Leicester 3 small virgates."
Furtho was a medieval village in south Northamptonshire, near Cosgrove. It was later deserted. Berkhampstead or Berkhamsted is an historic castle and market town on the western edge of Hertfordshire. It was held of the King by Count Robert of Mortain, William I's half-brother. A fee-farm gives the grantee the right to hold aa freehold estate, but with the payment of an annual rent. The book above also mentions Richard Gernet of Maupertuis, below.

Second, Willelmus Grenet had residence in Normandy as well. He was "Barone, plusieur de ses fidèles, aux environs de Fécamp." Also as Guillelmus, Guillaume and William.

Willelmus was a Norman lord who held lands in and around Fécamp. How extensive these lands were and how important a lord William was are unclear, but in the documents that follow he is in excellent company. During this period the family would have owned lands on both sides of the Channel and traveled freely, and perhaps frequently, between them. Note that the Conqueror's heirs spent most of their time on the continent, as would their retinues. Could William of Fécamp have been (1) William Chernet/Grenet of Hampshire (c1050)?

In the scenario presented here, Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp, Nicholas Grenet of Chartres, below, Richard Gernet of Essex, William de Chernet of Hampshire, and Ralph Gernet of Lancashire were brothers or cousins of the same generation, that is, that of the Conqueror's sons.

The Death of the Conqueror

William I died at Rouen, Normandy in 1087. He had agreed to divide his kingdom, giving his eldest son, Robert Curthose, the Duchy of Normandy, and his second son, William Rufus, the Kingdom of England. His third son, Henry Beauclerc, received a monetary settlement.

Immediately following the Conqueror's death a war of succession broke out between Robert and William Rufus. The English Barons rebelled against William, supported by Robert, and the Norman Barons rebelled, supported by William Rufus. William quickly subdued his rebellious subjects. Robert, never an effectual ruler, got the worst of it.

There are two references to Willelmus Grenet in the charters of Robert Curthose, eldest son of the Conqueror and then Duke of Normandy, circa 1088. The following, from "Norman Institutions" by Charles Homer Haskins, refers to three charters, referenced as (a), (b), and (c); "b and c are anterior to the grant of Fécamp to William Rufus in 1091; c is posterior to the accession of Abbot Ralph of Seez in 1089."

"(a) 7 July 1088, Robert, when about to cross to England, restores to Fécamp and frees from all secular dues the land of William of Bec, of Hunspath, and of Hunloph, possessions at Ingauville [Ingouville], Bures, and Bouteilles, and land at Fécamp which his father had taken from the abbey."

Robert intended to cross to England in 1088 to aid the barons who were in revolt against his brother, William Rufus. He never made it - he was always dilatory - and the revolt collapsed.
- William of Bec. Bec is the village of Bec-de-Mortagne [Mortaing, Mauritania]. De Mortagne refers to Robert de Mortagne, the son of William of Bec, fils de Guillaume de Bec - from a regional French website. Not to be confused with William of Bec, the abbot of Cormeilles 1093-1109 who was a confidant of Lafranc. For a more learned reference:
Pour l'identité de Robert de Bec-de-Mortagne voir Adigard des Gautries, Jean, "Les noms de communes en Normandie", Annales de Normandie , supplément (1962), p. 6, cité par Le Maho, 1976, p. 56.
A reference for the village name says,
"Le qualificatif Mortagne rappelle le nom de Robert de Mortagne, fils de Guillaume du Bec (Robertus de Mauritania filius Willelmi de Becco), cite dans le texte de 1088." - from "Le Noms des Communes et Anciennes Paroisses de la Seine-Maritime" by François de Beaurepaire

Mortagne and Mortain

Note that there are three Mortagnes/Mortains in the region.

(1) Bec-de-Mortagne is a small village, north of the Seine in Upper Normandy, about 6 km southeast of Fécamp, in the Ganzeville valley. It was associated with Robert of Mortagne, the son of William of Bec. Today it appears to be quite the tourist spot.

"Le mot scandinave bekkr, qui signifie cours d'eau, a donné Bec. Il s'agit du cours d'eau de Robert de Mortagne, fils de Guillaume de Bec. Le presbytère qui se trouve près de l'église était une ancienne lèproserie. Le Bec De Mortagne se situe au coeur de la vallée de la Ganzeville, site inscrit."

[The scandanavian word bekkr, which means river, gave Bec its name. [It is about the river] of Robert de Mortagne, the son of William de Bec. The presbytery which is close to the church was an old leprosery. Bec de Mortagne is located in the heart of the Ganzeville valley, and is a registered site.]

"La motte féodale dite du vieux château: elle date du X-XIème siècles et est entourée d'un fossé de 8 mètres de profondeur. Elle se situe près des carrières. Des traces de fondations maçonnées subsistent, indiquant l'emplacement de l'ancienne tour. Les donjons généralement construits en bois ont donc tous disparus."

[The fedual mound known as the old castle dates from the 10-11th centuries and is surronded by an 8 meter deep ditch. It is located close to the quarries. Traces of the buildings foundations remain, indicating the site of the old tower. The keeps, generally built out of wood, have disappeared.]

The website of the village: Bec De Mortagne.

(2) Mortain is in the southern part of La Manche, just west of Domfront, in Lower Normandy. It was associated with William I's half-brother. One of the many sons of Duke Richard II, Duke of Normandy, was Mauger [Maliger] (986-1040), Count de Corbeil and de Mortain. He married Germaine, the daughter of Aubert, 2nd Count of Corbeil. Their son, William "the Warling," Count of Corbeil plotted against William I while he was still Duke and lost the county of Mortagne to William's half-brother, Robert. His son, William, succeeded to this estate.

(3) Mortagne-au-Perche is to the east. It was associated with the Counts of Mortagne and Perche of the Chateaudun line.

William of Bec was perhaps a cousin of William Crispin, Seigneur or Baron de Bec-en-Caux, near Fécamp, who was at Hastings with William the Conqueror. See William Crispin, from J.R. Planche's "The Conqueror and His Companions." It has also been claimed that Turstin, who carried William's banner at Hastings, was the "son of Rou, a knight of the less famous Bec in the land of Caux."

"Tosteins fitz Rou-le-Blanc out non
Al Bec en Caux aveit meison"

- from the "Roman de Rou" by Robert Wace

I haven't been able to find Hunspath or Hunloph. Ingouville is on the channel coast, equidistant between Fécamp and Dieppe; Bures is nearer to Caen; Bouteilles is just outside Dieppe. Jean-Pierre Chartier has,

"the land of William of Bee [sic], of Hunsfath, and of Hunlopk, possessions at Ignauville, Bures, and Bouteilles, and land at Fecamp which his father had taken from the abbey."

Fécamp Abbey Church of the Sacred Trinity

The abbey of Fécamp was one of the wealthiest and most prestigious of the old Benedictine abbeys in the duchy. The first monastic establishment in Fécamp dates from the 7th century. It was destroyed by the Vikings and restored by William Longsword, the second Duke of Normandy. Duke Richard I had a vast church rebuilt there circa 990. His son Richard II confirmed ducal favour upon the abbey and appointed the reforming monk William of Volpiano, a Cluniac, as Abbot.

The establishment of the ducal palace close to the abbey and the actions of the new abbot placed Fécamp in the elite of Norman abbeys. Richard I's chapel was replaced by a Romanesque abbey church built during the rule of Abbot William of Ros (1082-1108). This was largely destroyed by a fire in 1168. Two surviving Romanesque chapels enable a reconstruction of the choir with ambulatory and radiating chapels which were fairly uncommon in Normandy. The sculpted elements from the Romanesque period bear a great resemblance to the art of the illuminated manuscripts practised in the abbey's scriptorium. The sculpted bas-reliefs of scenes from the life of Christ preserved in the choir are from a later period than the Romanesque. They were probably part of the tomb in which Henry II Plantagenet deposited the remains of Dukes Richard I and Richard II in 1162, thereby marking his affinity with the Norman dynasty and with one of its principle sanctuaries.

The herbal liquer, Benedictine, was first mady by the Benedictine monastery of Fécamp.

The Abbots of Fécamp:
- The first Abbot was William of Volpiano, of Lombardy. He ruled from about 1000 to 1031. He was famous for having the Empereor Otto, of Germany, as his godfather. His special patron was Duke Richard II.
- John Dalie, of Ravenna, in Lombardy. He was the special friend, counsellor and emissary of the Conqueror. He was also a friend of Anselm, later sainted. John ruled from 1031 to 1082.
- William de Ros [or Roos] was Abbot from 1082 to 1107.
- Roger d'Argences was the 4th Abbot, from 1107 to 1139. Argences was a village in Bayeaux, near Caen. Roger was ordained priest with the famous chronicler, Orderic Vitalis.
- Henry de Sully [Suilly] was Abbot of Fécamp from 1139 to 1188. He was the son William of Blois, and therefore the nephew of King Stephen of England and William, Bishop of Winchester. He married a de Sully and took his wife's name along with her estates. He was elevated to the abbey during the anarchy between Henry II and Stephen.
- Ralph [or Raoul] d"Argences was Abbot from 1188 to 1219.
- Richard d'Argences succeeded his uncle as Abbot from 1219 to 1222.
- Richard de Paluel dit Morin Abbot from 1222 to 1227.
- William de Vaspail Abbot from 1227 to 1259.
- Richard de Tregos Abbot from 1259 to 1284.
- William de Putot, from 1285 to 1297.
- S. John Thomas, from 1297 to 1309.
. . .
- By the way, the 37th abbot was John Casimir, the deposed King of Poland, who was being sheltered by Louis XIV.

The Ducal Palace

Until 1204 Fécamp, located on the coast in today's province of Seine-Maritime, was the official residence of the Dukes of Normandy. The Ducal Palace which was originally built in the 10th century on the site of an ancient nunnery destroyed by the Vikings. At the end of the 12 century, Henri II Plantagenet, the husband of Eleanor of Aquitaine, came to Fécamp to assert his rights over Normandy. He built the enormous fortified bastion on top of the ancient ramparts which can still be seen today. It was eventually dismantled and the castle was integrated into the monastic property around the abbey.

Before 1091:

"(b) Thereafter Robert grants to the abbey a fair at Fécamp each year as long as the catch of herrings lasts, as well as a meadow for the monk's dairy."
Fécamp was a fishing village whose inhabitants hoped this phrase meant "forever." The following is the Latin original.
"(b) Ego qui supra Rotbertus Dei gratia dux et princeps Normannorum [concedo] Sancte Trinitati et ecclesie Fiscannensi in ipso loco Fiscanni [apud ecclesiam Sancti Stephani nundinam unam que volgo] feria dicitar omni anno quandiu captura haringorum duraverit. Et ut [hec mea concessio firma maneat signi mei auctorita]te firmavi et fidelim meorum quorum inferius nomina anotata sunt [attestatione roboravi. Hi sunt] Helias de Sancto Sydonio, Bernardus de Brus, Willelmus+filius Girardi, et Willelmus Grenet. Ex parte Sancte [Trinitatis: Willelmus abbas, Iohannes cellerarius], Willelmus Malus conductus, et Ingelrannus. Concedo etiam quoddam pratum quod Grandis campus vocatur ad vacariam unam faciendam ad opus monachorum." - from "Norman Institutions"
My translation,
"(b) I, Robert, by the grace of God Duke of the Normans, grants to the Abbey of the Sacred Trinity of Fécamp the right to hold a market day at Fécamp on Saint Stephan's holy day . . . In order that this, my grant, be an enduring sign of my support and faithfulness . . . I expressly name these attestors to confirm. These are Helias de Saint Saens, Bernard de Brus, William son of Gerard, and William Grenet. For the Abbey of the Sacred Trinity: Abbot William, John the cellarer, William Malus the hired man, and Ingelran . . ."
Note that William Grenet was here an attestor for the Duke, not for the Abbey. I believe this means he was a vassal of the Duke, and not yet of the Abbey.
- Helias de Sancto Sydonio, Elias of Saint Saens, was a Norman nobleman who married the illegitimate daughter of Duke Robert and received Bures-en-Bray and the county of Arques. Saint Saens is due east of Fécamp. This family descended from William the Conqueror's grandfather, Duke Richard II. As late as 1112 Helias continued to support Duke Robert, spiriting his son, William Clito, to Flanders and thereby forfeiting his lands in upper Normandy to Henry I. Henry's great enemy, Robert de Bellême, Roger de Montgomery's son, was an ally of Helias.
- Bernardus de Brus [Bernard de Brus], of Bruis [Brix, near Cherbourg?]. He was the brother of Robert de Brus. Robert, came over to England at the time of the Conquest. His line of the family, lords of Cleveland and Annandale, produced Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland. Jean-pierre Chartier has,
"I found this, which confirms your point :
Bruce est un prénom masculin écossais d'origine toponymique. Sa popularité est liée à celle d'une famille descendant d'un chevalier normand originaire de Brix (Manche, Brutius vers 825, Bruoto en 1026 - 1027, Bruis en 1042, 1198, 1280)1, compagnon de Guillaume le Conquérant, adapté en Brus ou Bruce et dont est issu le prénom. Le toponyme Brix est inexpliqué et a été rapproché de Bruz (Ille-et-Vilaine, Brud 1067, Bruth 1084)2.
1 François de Beaurepaire (préf. Yves Nédélec), Les Noms des communes et anciennes paroisses de la Manche, Paris, A. et J. Picard, 1986, 253 p. (ISBN 2-7084-0299-4, OCLC 15314425), p. 89
2 François de Beaurepaire, Op. cit.
The last sentence indicates that the origin of the place name « Brix » is unaccounted for. It does NOT question the fact that Brus / Bruce comes from Brix."

- Willelmus + filius Girardi, of Yorkshire. "Willelmus filius Girardi tenuit deversus le north in Thacrum, et unam aliam dimidiam acram terre in Thacrum propinquiorem terre Wielardi filii Willelmi deversus le suth, et aliam dimidiam acram terre in Thacrum recte juxta terram dicti Wielardi longius . . . Preterea confirmavit nobis illam dimidiam acram terre quam Willelmus filius Girardi dedit nobis in Thacrum per omnia sicut ejus carta purortat." - from "Early Yorkshire Charters" by William Farrer, Charles Travis Clay. Where is Thacrum?
- Willelmus abbas was William, of Ros, the Abbot of Fécamp from 1082 to 1108.
- Ingelrannus was also listed, as Ingelrand, for the abbey in a document below.

Duke Robert (1054-1134)

He was nicknamed "Curthose" for his short, squat appearance. His father called him brevis-ocrea [short boot] in derision. Robert was the eldest son of William the Conqueror and Matilda of Flanders. At left he is pictured being baptized.

Robert rebelled against his father in 1077-1080, but was forgiven. He succeeded to the Duchy of Normandy in 1087 while his brother, William Rufus, became King of England. A desultory war betweeen the brothers followed. In 1096, having got the worst of it, Robert mortgaged the Duchy to his younger brother, William, in order to go on the First Crusade. By the way, this was the only Crusade that achieved its object, establishing the Christian kingdom of Jerusalem.

When William Rufus died in 1100 Robert should have become King, but he was away on Crusade and his younger brother, Henry quickly seized the Throne. Robert subsequently invaded England in 1101, but was defeated and forced to renounce the crown. Henry, enraged by Robert's continuing attempts to stir discord in England, invaded Normandy in 1105 and, by 1106, had defeated his brother. Robert was imprisoned for the rest of his life.

After this defeat Robert's son, William Clito, was placed in the custody of Helias of Saint Saens, who in 1110 spirited the boy to the court of Baldwin VII of Flanders. William's adherents led two rebellions in his name, from 1112-1120, and, after the death of Henry I's son and heir, William Atheling, in 1123. Both were unsuccessful. William was for a short time the Duke of Flanders, but died, ironically, in a rebellion against his own rule.

The Montgomery family, including Roger of Poitou, were adherents of Duke Robert, who was generally considered the weaker of the brothers and the most easily ruled, which may explain why many of the strongest families supported him.


"(c) Robert, having defeated Robert of Mortain, son of William of Bec, and given his land to Gohier, again restores it to Fécamp and invests the abbot per lignum [by means of the wood, i.e. by the cross of Jesus]."
- Robert of Mortain was the son of William of Bec, above.
- Gohier may be Gohier de l'Aunei [Gonthier de Aunay]. He was a strong supporter of Duke Robert "whose defence of the town of Bayeux [in 1105] will be so successful that Henry [Duke Robert's younger brother] resorts to burning it down . . ." - from "A Companion to Wace" by Françoise Hazel Marie Le Saux. Gunheris de Alneio was mentioned by Orderic Vitalis as the Duke's castellan of Bayeux. The fact that the Duke gave Gohier's land away may be a sign of the Duke's faithlessness, or it may have been part of some larger deal in which Gohier gained new estates for old.

The following is the Latin original of the text.
"(c) Post hec omnia consurrexit adversum me et adversum abbatem Fiscanni Rotbertus de Moritania filius Willelmi de Becco et in ipsa terra quam de Sancta Trinitate et Fiscannensi abbate tenebat castrum firmavit et servitia que terra devevat contratenuit. At ego Deo auxiliante pariter et fidelibus meis annitentibus non solum eum conquisivi verum et castrum ipsum destruxi simul et incendi et terram illam Gohero dedi. Quod abbas de cuius feodo terra erat audiens me inde requisivit, dicens quod terra illa de dominio sancti antiquitus fuerit et quod ego eam quando in Anglian transire debui cum aliis terris ecclesie reddiderim. Hoc ego verum esse cognoscens simul et volens ut suum sancto maneret, Fiscannum veni et terram illam cum aliis terris ac rebus que in alia carta annotate sunt Sancete Trinitati reddidi et dedi et inde donationem hoc lignum in manus abbatis misi et utramque cartam sigillo meo auctorizavi, et hoc ideo feci nequi de cetero existat qui dicere possit quod terra ista de dominio sancti non fuerit et quod ego eam ecclesie non reddiderim et donaverim.

Signum Rotberti+comitis Signum Radulfi+abbatis Sagii. Ad hoc barones mei testes fuerunt Goherus, Rotbertus de Donestanvilla, Radulfus de Grainvilla, Gislebertus filius Raineri, Willelmus filius Girardi, Willelmus Grenet, Rotbertus filius Turstini, et Gislebertus Belet. Ex parte Sancte Trinitatis: Willelmus abbas, Willelmus filius Teoderici, Rogerius de Scilletot, Richardus Harela, Iohannis celerarius, Willelmus Malus conductus, Hugo de Ichelunt, Ancherus de Nevilla, Ansfredus Bordet, Ingelrannus et Hugo Gohun." - from "Norman Institutions"

Duke Robert and Abbot Radulf of the Abbey of Seez signed the document. The witnesses were divided into two groups. The first group was referred to as barons, that is vassals of the Duke. William Grenet was in this group. The second were of the abbey. So, as of 1089-1091 William Grenet was still a follower of the Duke's.
- Goherus, Gohier de l'Aunei, see above.
- Rotbertus de Donestanvilla, Robert de Dunstanville, was a landowner in Sussex circa 1095.
- Radulfus de Grainvilla. The de Grainville's held land both in Normandy and England. Grainville- la-Teinturiere is a village in upper Normandy, southeast of Fécamp.
- Gislebertus filius Raineri
- Willelmus filius Girardi, of York, see above.
- Willelmus Grenet
- Rotbertus filius Turstini. Turstin, the son of Rou [Rollo, Rolf, Rau], was shown on the Bayeux tapestry bearing the standard of Normandy at the battle of Hastings. He was subsequently the Sheriff of Cornwall and listed in the Domesday book (1086) as holding Caerleon castle in South Wales. His son, Ralph, went on crusade with Duke Robert and died there. There is also a reference to a Robert, the grandson of Turstin Haldup [Halduc], who was seneschal of Robert of Mortagne, the half-brother of the Conqueror. Baron de la Haye-du-Poits and Le Plessis. Turstin apparently lost his domains at the end of the 11th century, making it sound like he was another of Duke Robert's supporters.
- Gislebertus Belet, Gilbert Belet, the Belet's [Beleth, Billet] came to England at the time of the Conquest. Guillaume Belet is on the Dives Roll as fighting at Hastings. Gilbert may be a son of William.

The following is an historical commentary, in French, that mentions William Grenet in this same context.

"Guillaume le Roux et Robert Courteheuse se sont battus pour y exercer leur suprématie entre1088 et1094; l'un et l'autre ont vraisembablement visité l'abbaye, à cette époque, mais ne l'ont plus visitée par la suite. Pour autant qu'on le sache, Henri Ier non plus ne s'y est pas rendu, car il préférait traverser la Manche pour se rendre en Angleterre en empruntant la route occidentale. Quand il se trouvait en Normandie, il avait tendance à tenir ses grandes cours à Rouen ou à Caen. Fécamp avait été le lieu de sépulture des ducs Richard Ier, Richard II et de Marguerite du Maine, la fiancée de Robert Courteheuse, mais l'abbaye n'est pas devenue la nécropole de la maison régnante en Normandie comme, par exemple, Saint-Denis l'est devenue pour les Capétiens.'

Les dernières années du XIesiècle ont été difficiles pour l'abbaye, à cause des luttes entre les fils du Conquérant. Robert avait pourtant bien commencé à s'attirer les faveurs des moines en leur restituant certaines terres que l'abbaye avait perdues et il leur avait octroyé une foire qui devait durer tout le temps de la prise du hareng. En revanche, dans ses efforts pour rassembler une flotte afin d'envahir l'Angleterre en 1088, il a capturé des vaisseaux appartenant aux moines; l'un d'eux, ancré dans la Seine, a été détourné de force. Robert a tenté de renforcer son autorité aux environs de Fécamp, installant plusieurs de ses fidèles comme Guillaume Grenet, Gilbert Belet, Geoffroi Martel, Robert d'Estouteville, sur des terres issues du domaine ducal. Pourtant, cette tentative a provoqué des troubles dans un cas au moins, et il a fait détruire le château d'un autre nouveau-venu, Robert de Mortagne.
" - by Judith Ann Green, School of Modern History, The Queen's University of Belfast, Northern Ireland
The following is my attempt at translating the crucial sentences:
"William Rufus [King of England] and Robert Curthose [Duke of Normandy] fought to exert their supremacy from 1088 to 1094 . . . the last years of the 11th century were difficult for the abbey [of Fécamp] because of the fights between the heirs of the Conqueror. Robert, however, began to attract favor of the monks by restoring certain lands that the abbey had lost . . . Robert attempted to reinforce his authority in the region of Fécamp by installing several friends such as William Grenet, Gilbert Belet, Geoffrey Martel and Robert D'Estouteville, on ducal lands [that is, enfeoffed out of ducal property]. However, this attempt caused disorders in at least one case when the castle of a new-comer, Robert de Mortagne, had to be destroyed."
This reinforces the earlier surmise that as early as 1088 Duke Robert enfeoffed William Grenet out of his own lands in the region of Fécamp.
- Gilbert Belet, see above. He held lands at Maniquerville, 3 kilometers south of Maupertuis, between Lillebonne and Fécamp.
- Geoffroi Martel. While this looks like Geoffrey Martel, the Duke of Anjou, this was actually a member of the family of de Bacqueville-en-Caux, in Normandy. The nickname Martel, or hammer, was received for bravery. The family held lands in Normandy about 4 kilometers south of the Belet's. Geoffrey held lands in Essex as under-tenant of Geoffrey de Mandeville. His son, William, below, was the steward/butler of Henry I and Stephen.
- Robert d'Estouteville was probably Robert II. His father, Robert Sr., was the governor of the Castle of Ambriegrave. It was the father who had defended the castle so stoutly against the Duke of Anjou, Geoffrey Martel I, in 1056. The father was also a companion of the Conqueror who followed Hugh de Gournay to England in the invading army. Robert Jr. was a follower of Duke Robert of Normandy and superintended his troops and fortresses in the Pays de Caux. He was killed in the battle of Maromme fighting against the forces of Henry I. See The Conqueror and His Companions, by J.R. Planché, Somerset Herald. London: Tinsley Brothers, 1874, for a more complete account.
- Robert de Mortagne [Mortain], the son of William of Bec, see above. A "new-comer?"

All of the above is interesting in that it shows William Grenet as one of the "barones . . . aux environs de Fécamp" [barons from Fécamp], and a "plusieurs de ses fidèles comme" [powerful and faithful friend] of Duke Robert. Earl Roger of Poitou, Ralph Gernet's overlord in Lancashire, and the Montgomery family were in the Duke's camp as well.

Another reference, also in French, expands on the information we have previously discussed.

"Guillaume Grenet est témoin pour lui dans un acte fécampois postérieur a Juillet 1088 (78); il parait avoir participé a la prise du chateau du Bec-de-Mortagne (79). Il est le premier membre connu d'un lignage que l'on trouve installé quelques années plus tard a Maupertuis, dans, un essart du bois de Grainval, ou les Gernet [sic] ont édifié une fortification de terre (80). Gerville, dépendance du fief de Maupertuis, se trouve sur la rue qui traverse l'ancien bois des Loges."

[Translation:] William Grenet was a witness for him [Duke Robert] in an act signed at Fécamp after July 1088 (78); he appears to have participated in the taking of the chateau of Bec-de-Mortagne (79). He [Grenet] was the first member of a lineage which is thought to have been installed some years later at Maupertuis, an essart, or clearing, in the wood of Grainval, where Gernet built an earthen fortification [probably a motte and bailey castle] (80). Gerville, a dependency of the fief of Maupertuis, is on the road which crosses through the ancient wood of Loges. - from "Archéologie Médiévale"
Sir Roger Gernet of Fécamp, below, held Maupertuis at a later date. The village of Grainval is a mile or so south of Fécamp, on the Norman coast. However, the forest of Grainval must have extended someway south. Maupertuis is 3 kilometers north of Maniquerville, the ancestral seat of the Belet family. Gerville is a village, just west of Maniquerville. See the forest of Loges, east of Gerville. Bec de Mortagne is east northeast of Maniquerville.


Or assart in England. The law and practice of assartage developed in Europe, beginning in the 13th century, as a means to clear forested land for cultivation and settlement. It was usually an agreement between the church, the Cistercians were specialists in this technique, and a secular owner. In English law it was illegal to assart any part of the Royal forest.

"Un autre fidéle, Gilbert Belet, officier a la cour (81), appose son non a coté de celui de Guillaume Grenet dans la charte de restitution du Bec-de-Mortagne."

[Translation:] Another faithful retainer, Gilbert Belet, an officer of the court (81), joined William Grenet as a witness to the charter of the restitution of Bec-de-Mortagne. - from "Archéologie Médiévale"
Belet was identified as an officer of the court. Since William Grenet was not, can we assume he was a "knight of the militia," see below?

The next section of the "Archéologie Médiévale" makes some significant observations.

". . . A la fin du XIIe siécle, Maupertuis était l'emplacement de la demeure d'un lignage chevaleresque, vassal de l'abbaye de Fécamp, portant le nom de Gernet ou Grenet (99). La terre était tenue de l'abbé; elle correspond apparemment a une des dépendances du bois de Grainval que Guillaume le Batard avait concéde au monastére entre 1035 et 1040 (100). L'autre bois, celui des Hogues, resta ducal jusqu'en 1162, date a laquelle l'essart de Maupertuis était déja assez ancien pour étre mentionné parmi les territoria limitant le bois (101).

Il semble possible de situer approximativement la date de l'installation des Gernet a Maupertuis. Les premiéres mentions du lignage apparaissent sous forme de souscriptions dans deux actes émis a Fécamp et adressés par le duc Robert Courteheuse a l'abbaye. Le premier, situé entre 1088 et 1091, est un diplome par lequel le duc concéde divers biens a l'abbaye, entouré de quelques-uns de ses "fidéles", dont Guillaume Grenet (102). Le second est l'acte notifiant la restitution de la terre du Bec-de-Mortagne, entre 1089 et 1091; Guillaume Grenet y figure encore, toujours, comme témoin et vassal du duc; on peut méme supposer qu'il se trouvait parmi les "fideles", qui, rapporte le méme acte, aiderent Robert a s'emparer du chateau adultérin. En somme, dans ces deux documents, Guillaume Grenet se présente comme client du duc et non de l'abbé, lequel est pourtant leur destinataire et y figure entouré, lui aussi, de ses propres dépendants. Il faut ajouter qu'aucun personnage du nom de Grenet n'est mentionné dans les listes de témoins abbatiaux antérieures au régne de Robert Courtheuse, en sorte qu'il parait possible d'admettre que les Grenet ne soient entrés qu'aprés 1089-1091 dans la dépendance de l'abbé. Cependant, ce devait étre chose faite entre 1094 et 1099, puisque cette fois-ci, dans un diplome du roi Guillaume le Roux délivré a l'abbaye de Fécamp, Guillaume Grenet est rangé parmi les témoins de l'abbé, et non du coté du roi (103), bien que celui-ci fut en possession, a cette date, du domaine public de Fécamp. Ensuite, les souscriptions du lignage deviennent fort nombreuses dans les actes sortis de la chancellerie du monastérie.

Il est possible qu'il existe une corrélation entre l'apparition subite des Grenet dans le réseau des dépendants de l'abbé de l'inféodation a ceux-ci de la terre de Maupertuis. En 1091, l'abbaye, tombée sous la coupe de Guillaume Le Roux, subit des ponctions importantes dans sa clientéle chevalereque (105). Tout porte a croire que l'abbé se trouve alors dans la nécessité de reconstituer une partie de sa milice en taillant dans le domaine abbatial des fiefs qu'il investit a de nouveaux venus. Les abandons consentis a ces vassaux de derniére heure, dans une période difficile ou le temporei était partout menacé, ont du favoriser singuliérement leur essor. Ce n'est sans doute pas un hasard les Grenet sont apparemment les seuls tenants de l'abbaye, dans la région, a avoir réussi a créer une seigneurie castrale. Le petit village--rue de Gerville, qui en était la principale dépendance, parait étre sorti du meme essart que la paroisse des Loges, démembrée vers 1093 de la foret ducale (106). Il n'en reste pas moins difficile de situer le moment précis ou s'érige la fortification de Maupertuis. Le seul indice chronologique vient au toponyme, Maupertuis, qui semble bien avoir été le nom donné au chateau lui-meme (107); il est attesté pour la premiére fois en 1151 (108)."

- from "L'Apparition des Seigneuries Chatelaines dans le Grand-Caux a L'epoque Ducale" in "Archéologie Médiévale"

[Translation:] . . . At the end of the 12th century, Maupertuis was the site of the residence of a chivalrous lineage, vassals of the abbey of Fécamp, carrying the name of Gernet or Grenet. The land was held of the abbot; it clearly corresponded to the dependency of the forest of Grainval which William the Bastard [the Conqueror] had conceded to the monastery between 1035 and 1040. The other wood, that of Hogues, remained ducal until 1162, a date by which the essart of Maupertuis, within the limits of the forest, was already quite ancient [maybe?].

So Maupertuis, given to the Grenet's after 1091, was part of the fief in the forest of Grainvil given to the Abbey.
[Translation:] It seems possible to identify the date of the installation of the Gernets at Maupertuis. First mention of this lineage appeared in the form of subscriptions in two issued acts at Fécamp and addressed by Duke Robert Courteheuse at the abbey. The first, dated between 1088 and 1091, was a diplome by which the Duke conceded various property around the abbey, held by the abbey, to his "Fidéles", of which William Grenet was one. Second is an act notifying the restitution of the land of Bec-de-Mortagne, dated between 1089 and 1091; William Grenet appeared there as a witness and vassal of the Duke; they can méme [?] to assume that he was among "Fideles", which, the méme act brings back, aiderent Robert has taken over the illegal chateau [castle?]. All in all, in these two documents, William Grenet comes off as a client of the Duke and the abbot, who is however their addressee and represents encircled there, also, his own dependent. It is necessary to add that no figure of the name of Grenet is mentioned in witnesses' abbey lists previous to the reign of Robert Courtheuse, so that he parried possible to suppose that Grenet enters only aprés on 1089-1091 depending on the abbot. However, it owed étre thing made between 1094 and 1099, since this time, in a diplome of the issued king William le Roux has the abbey of Fécamp, William Grenet is lined up among the witnesses of the abbot, and the quoting of the king (103), although this one was in possession, has this date, of the public domain of Fécamp. Then, the subscriptions of lineage become very much numerous in acts taken out from the Ministry of Justice of the monastérie.

My translation of the above is too disjointed to really understand the import of the original. It does, however, seem to say that the Grenet's were the Duke's vassals and given land by him circa 1088-1091. However, they became vassals of the Abbey after that time. This may have been a result of the Duke's defeat in the coming war with his brother, William Rufus. However, there is also a note above that says that the Abbey was given to William Rufus in 1091, apparently by the Duke. I don't know enough about this yet to comment.
[Translation:] It is possible that there is a correlation between the sudden appearance of Grenet in the network of the dependent of the abbot of dependance has these of the earth of Maupertuis. In 1091, the abbey, closing under the control of William Le Roux, is subjected to important punctures in its clientéle chevalereque. Everything hits has think that the abbot is then in the necessity to reconstruct a party of his militia by sharpening in the abbey domain of the fiefs that he invests has newcomers. The approved abandonments has these vassals of derniére the hour, for the difficult period or the temporei was threatened everywhere, have of favour singuliérement their development. It is not probably a chance Grenet are obviously the only supporters of the abbey, in the region, must have succeeded has create a castrale seigniory. The small village - street of Gerville, which was main dependency, parried étre taken out from the meme essart that the parish of Lodges, cut up by 1093 of drill ducale. He remains there not less difficult to locate the definite instant or sets himself up the fortification of Maupertuis. The only chronological indication comes to the toponym, Maupertuis, which well seems to have been the name given in the chateau it - meme (107); it is certified for the premiére time in 1151

Well, my translation here is so poor that I can make out very little, other than that the Abbey had lost much its knightly following circa 1091 and, like Duke Robert before them, they struggled to rebuild a network of support. Apparently, like any feudal lord, the church too needed knights in saddles to defend its interests.

Jean-pierre Chartier comes to the rescue again,

"Really a difficult passage to translate. I realise my knowledge of medieval customs and vocabulary is quite insufficient !!! Here is what I made out :

At the end of the 12th century, Maupertuis was the site of the residence of a chivalrous lineage, vassals of the abbey of Fécamp, by the name of Gernet or Grenet. The land was obtained from the abbot; it seems to correspond to one of the dependencies of the forest of Grainval which William the Bastard had granted to the monastery between 1035 and 1040. The other wood, that of Hogues, remained ducal until 1162, a date by which the essart of Maupertuis had existed for a sufficiently long time to be mentioned among the areas limiting the forest.

It seems possible to give approximately the date of the installation of the Gernets at Maupertuis. The earliest mentions of this lineage appeared in the form of witnesses’ signatures in two acts issued at Fécamp and addressed by Duke Robert Courteheuse to the abbey. The first, dated between 1088 and 1091, was a notification by which the Duke, together with some of his faithful allies, including William Grenet, conceded various properties to the abbey. The second is the act notifying the restitution of the land of Bec-de-Mortagne, dated between 1089 and 1091; William Grenet appears again there, still as a witness and vassal of the Duke; one can even assume that he was among the faithful allies which, as that document states, helped Robert capture the castle illegitimately taken. All in all, in those two documents, William Grenet comes off as a client of the Duke and not of the abbot though he is their addressee and is mentioned therein together with his own dependents. One must add that nobody by the name of Grenet is mentioned in the lists of the abbot’s witnesses prior to the reign of Robert Courtheuse ; so it might be possible to suppose that the Grenets entered the abbot’s entourage only after 1089-1091. However, they must have arrived between 1094 and 1099, since, by that time, a notification issued by king William le Roux and addressed to the abbey of Fécamp, mentions William Grenet as being among the witnesses of the abbot, and not those of the king, although this one [I am not sure who !] owned, at that time, the public domain of Fécamp. From then on, the witnesses’ signatures of lineage [of the Grenets] become very numerous in the acts issued by the monastery’s chancery.

There may be a correlation between the sudden emergence of the Grenets in the network of the abbot’s dependents and the Grenets’ acquisition of the Maupertuis estate. In 1091, the abbey, fallen under the control of William Le Roux, suffers important departures of dependent knights. It is very likely that the abbot is in great need of replenishing the ranks of his militia and has to carve out parts of the abbey estate to create fiefs he will give to newcomers. In a difficult period when worldly goods were in danger everywhere, these donations awarded to eleventh-hour vassals must have considerably favoured their rise. It is no coincidence that, in that region, the Grenets seem to have been the only tenants of the abbey to succeed in creating a castle-based domain. The small village - street of Gerville, which was its main dependency, seems to have developed from the same land reclamation as the parish of Les Loges, carved around 1093 from the duchy’s forest.. Yet it is still difficult to know the exact time when Maupertuis started being fortified. The only chronological indication comes from the place name Maupertuis, which does seems to have been the name given to the castle itself ; it is ascertained for the first time in 1151."


Or Maupertus, Montpertuis; I've also seen this as de "Froberville et de Malptus (Maupertuis)."

"--Le hameau de Maupertuis est situé sur la limite commune des terroirs de Froberville et de St. Léonard, a l'ouest de Fécamp, dans un site de plaine." - from "L'Apparition des Seigneuries Chatelaines dans le Grand-Caux a L'epoque Ducale" in "Archéologie Médiévale"

The hamlet of Maupertuis is situated on the boundary between the communes of Froberville and St Leonard, west of Fécamp, set on a plain.

The village of Gerville [Gereville], to the south, was a dependancy.

Footnote. "C. Vassaux de l'Abbaye de Fécamp
. . .
29.--Maupertuis, l.d. (c. Froberville et Saint-Léonard, cant. Fécamp). Ce fief de haubert appartient a la famille Gernet (arch. S.M. 7 H 9, fo 2, 5 et suiv.). Il reléve de l'abbaye en 1503 (Baill. de Caux, p. 286), avec sans doute des antécédents fort anciens: Robert Gernet atteste une charte de l'abbaye entre 1128 et 1131 (Regesta, t. 2, 1562); Guillaume G. est témoin pour l'abbé de Fécamp entre 1094 et 1099 (Regesta, t. 1, 423).


1) Gerville (cant. Fécamp).
Nicolas Gernet tient vers 1220 la terre de Gerville (Scripta, 642); le seigneur de Maupertuis présente a la cure en 1337 (Hist. de Fr., Pouillés, t. 2, p. 24 A)."
- from "L'Apparition des Seigneuries Chatelaines dans le Grand-Caux a L'epoque Ducale" in "Archéologie Médiévale"

[Translation:] C. Vassals of the Abbey of Fécamp
. . .
29.--Maupertuis . . . This fee, held by the tenure of knight-service, belonged to the Gernet family. It pertains to the abbey in 1503, without doubt with very ancient antecedents: Robert Gernet attested a charter of the abbey between 1128 and 1131; William G. was witness for the abbot of Fécamp between 1094 and 1099.


1) Gerville (Canton of Fécamp).
Nicolas Gernet held the land of Gerville by 1220; the lord of Maupertuis presented the vicar in 1337.
Did the Grenet's hold Maupertuis until 1503?

Fief de Haubert

An 11th century French term equivelant to the term Knight's Fee because of the the coat (hauberk) of mail which it entitled and required every tenant to own and wear when his services were needed. This provided a definite estate in France, for only persons who had this estate or greater were allowed to wear hauberks. - from the Hypertext Medieval Glossary.

". . . Geoffroy Martel, pére de Guillaume, apparait comme témoin au coté de Guillaume Grenet, dans un acte fécampois émis entre 1094 et 1099 (86), et il attest de nouveau un acte abbtial en 1103 (87)." - from "L'Apparition des Seigneuries Chatelaines dans le Grand-Caux a L'epoque Ducale" in "Archéologie Médiévale"

[Translation:] Geoffroy Martel, William's father, appears as a witness beside William Grenet in an act at Fécamp issued between 1094 and 1099 (86), and he is again a witness in an abbotial act in 1103 (87).
"Tous ces seigneurs, les Grenet, les Belet, les Martel, les sires d'Esneval, appartiennent à des lignages récemment fixés dans la région. Aucun n'est de souche locale et ne porte le nom de la terre qu'il occupe. Il est également notable que nul d'entre eux n'apparait dans les textes de Fécamp avant la fin du XIe siécle. Il y a donc tout lieu de penser que Robert entrepit de chaser ses officiers du palais (90) ainsi que les chevaliers de sa milice, en démembrant sa foret. On notera que les fiefs en question sont cantonnés dans un périmètre bien délimité, large de huit kilomètres, centré sur le bois des Loges. Ils forment un bloc d'un seul tenant, ce qui suggère l'idée d'une sorte de campagne d'inféodations, mise en œuvre en un temps très court. Serait-elle à mettre en rapport avec la venue du duc à Fécamp en Juillet 1088?" - from "L'Apparition des Seigneuries Chatelaines dans le Grand-Caux a L'epoque Ducale" in "Archéologie Médiévale"
[Translation:] All these lords, Grenet, Belet, Martel, and the Sires of Esneval, belonged to lineages newly fixed in the region. None was of local stock nor bears the name of the land they occupied. It is also notable that none of them appeared in the texts of Fécamp before the end of the 11th century. It is therefore very likely that [Duke] Robert started dismissing these officers from the palace (90) as well as the knights of the militia, when he divided the forest. It will noted that the fiefs being discussed are situated in a very small perimeter, eight kilometres broad, and centered on the wood of Les Loges. They form a single block which suggests a campaign of dependancies, implemented in a very short time. Would this be related to the visit of the Duke to Fécamp in July, 1088?

Jean-pierre's translation above implies that the Grenets had been part of Duke Robert's "landless" knighthood, enfeoffed to create a defensive perimeter around Fécamp. If the Grenets were not "local stock," where did they come from? My best guess is Chartres, where a Gernet family existed at the time of the 1st Crusade, in 1096. Apparently Duke Robert was desperate. He could see that an attack on him was imminent, but he could not muster sufficient force from the landed gentry, so he had to bring in new men. The Gernets must have been able to muster a following of some strength since the Duke made them an important part of his perimeter defense. Were they wealthy merchants who could afford to hire men?

Note above that the Belet's were "officers of the palace," that is the Duke's castle in Fécamp. Were the Grenet's "knights of the militia?" And what does that mean?

Officers of the Palace

Knights of the Militia

"La création d'une série nouvelle de fiefs était de nature à compenser la perte de ceux rétrocédés à l'abbaye, et à renforcer du même coup les garnisons du chateanu ducal"

Footnote 90. Le processus atteint son achévement dans la second moitié du XIIe siécle, lorsque les officiers se démettent des maisons qu'ils avaient jusque-la concervées au chateau de Fécamp. Ainsi pour Guillaume Martel et Hugues Grenet." - from "L'Apparition des Seigneuries Chatelaines dans le Grand-Caux a L'epoque Ducale" in "Archéologie Médiévale"
[Translation:] The creation of a new series of fiefs was likely to compensate the loss of those given back to the abbey, and thus to reinforce the garrisons of the Duke's castle.

Footnote 90. The process reaches its completion in the second half of the 12th century, when the officers abandon the houses which they had previously had in the castle of Fécamp. That was the case for William Martel and Hugues Grenet.
Who was Hugues [Hugh?] Grenet? I have found no other references to him.

After his defeat at the hands of his brother, William Rufus, Duke Robert went on Crusade in 1096. While the information below indicates William Grenet did not accompany him, Nicolas Grenet of Chartres was a crusader at this time and Eustace Grenet was the lord of Sidon, in today's Lebanon, in the next generation. Did Nicolas Grenet go in Robert's retinue?

In 1097 or 1098 William Grenet was a supporter of the Abbey of the Holy Trinity at Fécamp in a lawsuit. Snippets from the "Regesta Regum Anglo-Normannorum: 1066-1154," page 106, and "English Lawsuits from William I to Richard I" by R. C. van Caenegeminclude, page 130, have been combined to create the following:

"Apud Fulcardi Montem placitum fuit in curia regis Willelmi junioris inter monachos de Salmur et Philippum de Braiosa de his causis que infrascipte sunt. Monachi de Salmur, inter cetera que super Philippum de Braosa et super Fiscannensem ecclesiam clamabant, clamabant etiam parrochiam que ad Sanctum Cuthmannum pertinet de castello de Staninges, de Beddingas et de . . .

[Translation:] Memorandum of a suit pleaded at Foucarmont in the court King William II between the monks of Saumur and Philip de Braose on one hand and the monks of Fécamp on the other concerning the parish rights belonging to St. Cuthman (Steyning) in Bramber castle, Beeding and Bidlington.

After Count Roger de Meulan has testified that the right of Fécamp in Steyning had been proved in the court of King William I, the monks of Saumur are ordered to restore what they had received since the latter's death. King William II sends writs to this effect . . .

. . . placito judices ex parte regis sederunt: Robertus comes de Mellent, Eudo dapifer, Willelmus Gifardus cancellarius, Willelmus de Werelwast, Willelmus filius Ogeri. Ex parte Sancte Trinitatis fuerunt: Willelmus abbas, Hugo prior, Rogerius Baignart, Raherius, Philippus de Baiosa, Fulbertus archidiaconus, Rogerius filius Gerolt, Gaufridus Martel, Willelmus Grenet, Ingelrandus, Ricardus de la Mara, Odo fitz Ansger, William Malus Conductus, and many others

[Translation:] . . . On behalf of the king: Roger count of Meulan, Eudo the steward, William Giffard the chancellor, William de Warelwast and William fitz Oger. On behalf of Holy Trinity the following were present: Abbot William, Prior Hugh, Roger Bainard, Raher, Philip de Braose, Fulbert the Archdeacon, Roger fitz Gerold, Geoffrey Martel, William Grenet, Ingelrand, Richard de la Mare, Odo fitz Ansger, William Malconduit and many others"
This was a lawsuit heard in the royal court at Foucarmont in 1097/8 between the monks of Saumur, on the Loire, and Philip of Briouze which concerned churches and rights in Sussex claimed by both Saumur and Fécamp abbeys. Among the abbot of Fécamp's suite were Roger Baynard, Philip de Briouze, Roger Fitz Gerold, Geoffrey Martel, Odo Fitz Anger and William Malconduit - from "William Rufus" by Frank Barlow. Note that Edward the Confessor had originally granted the church in Steyning to the abbey at Fécamp and William I had confirmed the charter. However William also placed William de Braose, Philip's father, in command of the nearby castle of Bramber and a power struggle ensued between monks and lord. William resolved this in favor of the abbey in 1086, but the court case above was just one of many over the centuries that refought the dispute.

It is not clear what Wiliam Grenet's name means in this snippet. Was this a list of witnesses, attestors, or supporters of Fécamp abbey's claim? It is further confused by the presense of Phillip de Braose "on behalf of" the abbey. I suspect that William and Philip de Braose were listed with the abbey because, though Phillip was opposed to the abbot's claim, they were both enfeoffed of the abbey. Perhaps what this really meant was that those "on behalf of the king" were sitting in judgement on the case, placito judices . . . sederunt, while the others were witnesses and claimants, not having a part in the final judgement. The village and abbey of Foucarmont is northeast of Rouen.
- William II Rufus was King of England from 1087 to 1100.
On behalf of the king:
- Roger count of Meulan was Roger de Beaumont, though this should refer to his son, Earl Robert of Leicester, who succeeded his father in 1081. He was also lord of the nearby castle of Brionne.
- Eudo the steward was Eudo FitzHerbert, the youngest son of Hubert of Ryes. A large landowner in Cambridgeshire, he had a castle at Préaux, in Normandy.
- William Giffard was lord chancellor of England for William II and Henry I.
- William de Warelwast was a Norman cleric. He later became the Bishop of Exeter.
- William fitz Oger was a landowner in Buckinghamshire and Kent.
On behalf of Holy Trinity:
- Abbot William, of Ros, was the Abbot of Fécamp from 1082 to 1108.
- Raher, and his brother William, are on a number of documents dealing with the abbey.
- Philip of Briouze [Braose], the son of William, was the second Lord of Bramber, in Sussex. He conquered the Welsh borderlands at Builth and New Radnor and established himself as a Marcher Lord.
- Fulbert was the archdeacon of Rouen in 1091 - from "The Lives of the Fathers, Martyrs, and Other Principal Saints" by Alban Butler.
- Roger fitz Gerold, of Roumare, near Rouen, was the grandson of the Dapifer [steward] of William I. His father, Robert, accompanied the Conqueror to England and his name appeared in chief in the counties of Hertfordshire, Berkshire, Wiltshire, Dorset and Somerset as Robertus filius Girolde.
- Geoffrey Martel was, as we've previously discussed, lord of de Bacqueville-en-Caux, in Normandy. He was enfeoffed of the abbey.
- William Grenet. He was enfeoffed of the abbey.
- Ingelrand we've seen previously as a member of the abbey.
- William Malconduit was a Norman lord, though in another place he, and his brother Geoffrey, were simply called laymen.

This is some rather prestigious company for William Grenet. It also indicates that William survived the defeat of Duke Robert despite his earlier support. It also ties him more closely to the abbey and reinforces the impression that he was a landowner in and around Fécamp. See also Roger Gernet, below.

(1) Ricardus Gernet (c1050)

Of Maupertius and Gerville. A possible son or brother of William Grenet, above. He could also be the (1) Richard Gernet (c1050) who, as Ric Gernet, was mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 as the owner of lands near Chignall, in Essex. The following is undated, but is probably circa 1086, the date of the Domesday Survey.

"Charters from the abbey of Fécamp, established on Norman ducal demesne lands in eastern Normandy, show the duke establishing there the followers most closely bound to him.
. . .
"Ricardus Gernet, Maupertius, comm. Gerville, cant. Valmont" - from "Domesday Book" by Elizabeth M. Hallam and David Bate
A similar citation is found in "Domesday People: Domesday Book" by K.S.B. Keats-Rohan

(2) Robert Gernet (c1080)
(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) or (1) Ricardus Gernet (c1050)

Of Maupertuis. He could have been born anytime between 1060 and 1100, that is, he was between 28 and 68 years old when the agreement below was signed.

"1128. "Afterwards this agreement was made between Roger abbot of Fécamp and Robert earl of Gloucester. If the prior of St. Gabriel be promoted, or deposed, for any reason, by consent of the abbot and of the said earl, lord of Croilei, and of both chapters, or shall die, another prior shall be chosen from the monastery of the Holy Trinity, Fécamp, etc. . . . The abbot of Fécamp shall receive the homages of the free tenants (francis hominibus), but their fealty (fidelitates) shall be received by the abbot of Fécamp and the prior of St. Gabriel in common. The abbot shall have the reliefs (relevationes terrarum) and the prior of St. Gabriel the rents, etc. . . .

Anno MCXXVIII. ab incarnatione Dominii. Testibus [Witnesses]: archiepiscopo Eboracensi Turstino; Ricardo episcopo Baiocensi; Hugone de Deserto; Turstino archidiacono; Willelmo de Sancta Barbara; Willelmo de Ros; Samsone; Dionisio, Ricardo canonicis. Ex parte domini Rogerii abbatis sunt testes [witnesses on behalf of the lord abbot Roger]: Rogerius archidiaconus archiep[iscopi]; Manust'; Willelmus filius Theoderici; Johannes Cell'; Adelelmus; Haimericus, et totus conventus. Laici [Laymen - on the part of the abbot]: Willelmus Ficann[ensis]; Engelrannus dapifer; Robertus Gernet; Gauff[ridus] de Maisnil; Gauffridus Pilevill'. Ex parte comitis [On the part of the count]: Warinus capellanus comitis ; Willelmus filius comitis ; Willelmus de Montfichet ; Robertus filius Bernardi ; Ricardus de Greinvilla ; Gauff[ridus] de Walterii . . ."" - from "Calendar of Documents Preserved in France"
I think this means that Robert Gernet, as part of abbot Roger's following, held his fief of the abbey.

The following reference to a charter signed in Rouen dealing with Fécamp. It mentions a Robert Ghernet as a witness.

1134. "Charter of Henry I, addressed generally. He notifies that, by his permission and consent, Roger, abbot of Fécamp (de Fiscanno) and his chapter have made an exchange with Nigel son of William, nephew (nepos) of Robert earl of Gloucester, his son; namely, Nigel has granted to the abbot and chapter all the land, horses, and rents at Fécamp held by his grandfather, his father, and himself, and has quit-claimed them to the abbot and chapter for their own support, for ever, together with all the land he held at Boleran (?Beaurain) or within the leucate of Fécamp. For this, the abbot and chapter have given and granted him all their land, tenants, and rents at Laleham (Lelham) on the terms that Nigel and his heirs shall be the abbot's tenants and liegemen (fideles) for that land of Laleham as they had been for the land of Fécamp. This the king grants and confirms.

Testibus hiis subscriptis [Witnesses signed]: Rogero episcopo Salesberie; Gaufrido cancellario; Nigello nepote episcopi Salesberie; Rogero capellano meo, nepote, abbatis Fiscanni; Roberto comite Gloecestrie filio meo; Roberto de Ver conestabulo; Briencio filio comitis; Willelmo de Ponte Archarum; Willelmo Martell; Ricardo filio Ursi; Roberto Ghernet; Gaufrido de Maisnillo; Engelramno dapifero abbatis; Simone Curci; Willemo palefrido; Osberto Octodenar[io]; Roberto Lamartra." - from "Calendar of Documents Preserved in France."
- Roger d'Argences was the abbot of Fécamp from 1107 to 1139.
- Nigel FitzWilliam, nephew of the earl of Gloucester.
- Robert earl of Gloucester was the brother of Stephen of Blois, who would reign from 1135 to 1154. Here I think "filio meo" refers to Robert being the King's "very close" cousin. See him also in the charter above, of 1128.
- Robert de Ver was the royal constable and hereditary constable of Normandy.
- Brien Fitz-Count was the lord of Wallingford and a later adherent of the Empress Matilda.
- William de Pont de l'Arche was the sheriff of Hampshire and in charge of the treasury at Winchester.
- William Martel was a powerful baron and Sheriff of Surrey. He would later be the steward to King Stephen and be imprisoned by Brien Fitz-Count. He was the son of Geoffrey Martel, above, and lord of de Bacqueville-en-Caux, in Normandy.
- Richard Fitz-Urse, of Williton, would fight on Stephen's side at the battle of Lincoln and be made a prisoner, like Stephen. He had a daughter who married the first Benedict Gernet of Halton. Note that Benedict also used the Ghernet spelling as a witness, along side Richard Fitz-Urse, to an agreement between the bishop of Evreux, the abbot of St. Evroud [Evroul], and the abbot of Blois - from "The English Historical Review." Benedict's grandson used this surname as Benedicto Ghernet at least twice. I have also seen Ralph Gernet of Suffolk, circa 1094, rendered as Radulpho Ghernet in "Remains, Historical and Literary, etc." of the Chetham Society. Ghernet reminds me of the Chernet spelling used by the Gernet family of Hampshire.

Was Robert Ghernet the son, or grandson, of William Grenet? Note that William Martel, above, was the son of Geoffrey Martel who witnessed a number of documents with William Grenet.

". . . Regesta regum anglo-normannorum 1055-1154, t.2., Oxford, 1966, p. 362, no CCVI). Parmi les temoins, Robert Gernet, alors seigneur de Maupertuis, pres du Bouleran." - from "Identités pèlerines: actes du colloque de Rouen"

[Translation:] "Among the witnesses, Robert Gernet, then lord of Maupertuis, near the Bouleran."
The hamlet of Bouleran is 2.5 kmilometer south of Fécamp. It is approximately halfway between Fécamp and Maupertuis.

(3) Will. Gernet of Normandy (c1100)
(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) (2) Robert Gernet (c1080)

There is a reference to a Norman historian, and perhaps clerk, named Will. Gernet.

[Footnote] "This account depends upon Norman authors alone. Dudo, p. 78; Will. Gernet, ii. 4 (both by Duchense); Wace Roman de Rou, v. 1364, ff. ed. . . " - from "The Life of Alfred the Great" translated from the German by R. Pauli and Paulus Orosius
Norman means, I assume, that he wrote in the period before Normandy was annexed by the French King, in 1204. Also as Gul. Gernet.
"Edgar Atheling and his followers again sought an asylum in Scotland; but despairing of success, and weary of a fugitive life, that prince afterwards submitted to his enemy, and was permitted to live unmolested in England.(1)
[Footnote] (1) Gul. Gernet, R. Hovedon." - from "The History of Modern Europe" by William Russell and William Jones
In this and other citations Will. Grenet is grouped with the great chroniclers Dudo of Saint-Quentin (c965-c1043) and Ordericus Vitalis (c1075-c1143), the poet-historian Wace (c1115-c1183), and Roger of Hovedon (d1201). His work is included in the books of Andre Duchesne (1584-1640), the father of French history, including the "Historiae Normanorum scriptores antiqui" [Ancient Writers of the History of the Normans (838-1220)] of 1619 and the "Historiae Francorum scriptores," published by his son, Francois.
[Footnote] ". . . For Normandy, Will. Gernet, lib. 8, cap. 36 (Duchesne, Scriptores, 311-12): Duke Richard espouses Gunnora 'in Christian fashion' and the children are covered with the mantle . . ." - from "The History of English Law Before the Time of Edward I" by Sir Frederick Pollock and Frederick William Maitland
Duchesne was the first to make critical collections of sources for national histories and his books today are the only source for some of these ancient texts. The following is a reference to a discussion about Philip I of France (1053-1108) and his regent, Count Baldwin V of Flanders (c1000-1067).
[Footnote] "Histor. de Fr., t. XI, p. 48, ex Will. Gernet.: a Phillippum vero filium suum in regimine Francorum haeredem constituit et tutelae Balduini flandrensis satrapae commendavit." - from the "Histoire des institutions monarchiques de la France sous les premiers Capétiens (987-1180)" by Achille Luchaire
[Translation:] "But his son, the heir to the French government appointed by Philip Baldwin of Flanders and the protection of the governors recommened."
". . . omnia Castella comitis Moritonii." Guill. Gernet. 1. VIII apud Duchesne, Norm. Scriptores, p. 29S." - from "Mémoires de la Société des antiquaires de Normandie" - 1825 (3)
He was cited as the source for Norman annals from 879 to 1096, "V. Will. Grenet, lib. v, cap. XVII, p. 247 A, etc." - from the "Nouveaux essais historiques sur la ville de Caen et son arrondisement" by Gervais de La Rue

I suspect this means that Will. Gernet was a member of the Fécamp family of Normandy, but a younger brother who, instead of inheriting, became a monk. Since the events he wrote about terminate around 1100, I assume he wrote just after that period, though he could be some generations later. He could even be (4) William Gernet, below, if we're willing to believe that the Norman Pipe Rolls would register the existence of someone so lowly as a monk.

(4) Hugues Gernet (c1140)
(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) (2) Robert Gernet (c1080) . . .

Or Hugh. There are a large number of Gernet's known in this generation. I presume this was because great events were unfolding and better records were kept. The following describes a reversion of properties in Fécamp. I have no further information about Hugh.

"Le processus atteint son achévement dans la second moitié du XIIe siécle, lorsque les officiers se démettent des maisons qu'ils avaient jusque-la concervées au chateau de Fécamp. Ainsi pour Guillaume Martel et Hugues Grenet." - from "Archéologie Médiévale"

[Translation:] "The process reached its fulfillment in the second half of the twelfth century, when the officers resigned houses they had previously [held?] at the castle of Fécamp. Thus for William Martel and Hugh Grenet."
The castle at Fécamp was the Duke's castle. Does this mean the Gernet's lost their manor?

(4) Robert Gernet II (c1150)
(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) (2) Robert Gernet (c1080) . . .

The man mentioned below must have been born between 1150 and 1180. From a footnote to a paragraph about the antiquity of a street, the Rue de Mar, in Fécamp. The relevant passage: "Vico de Mari, dans des chartes de 1210, par Robert de Calletot et Robert Gernet."

"Cette meme annee Pierre de Recuchon, chevalier, ajouta trente sols de rent a Etretat et, en 1272, Roger Davy leguait une masure sise dans la rue de Mer, proche le rivage: "In vico Maris aboutantem ad littus maris."4 Voila donce notre rue de Mer existant des le XIIIrd siecle, dans les contrats comme dans la tradition. Elle est toujours la principale rue d'Etretat. J'ai souvent entendu dire qu'a l'extremite de cette rue se trouvait la porte de la mer par laquelle on communiquait au rivage lorsqu'une muraille en barrait l'entree. Il est a remarquer que la principale rue de Fécamp, celle qui conduit de l'eglise au port est aussi appelee la rue de la Mer, depuis six cents ans.5 J'ai quelques raisons de croire qu'il en etait de meme a Veules.

Mais l'abbaye qui possedait le plus de terres et de droits a Etretat, c'etait celle de Fécamp-qui se condierait comme dame baronne et suzeraine de ce pays. Nous ne savons au juste a quelle epoque commenca cette souverainete, mais tout fait presumer qu'elle remontait aux temps merovingiens ou aux premiers ages normands. L'eglise, la chapelle de Saint-Valery, l'enclos presbyteral et la seigneurie e'Etretat etaient de toute antiquite le domaine de l'abbaye de Fécamp . . .

. . .
[Footnote] 5. Vicus de Mari.--Vico de Mari, dans des chartes de 1210, par Robert de Calletot et Robert Gernet." - from "Etretat, son passe, son present, son avenir" by Jean Benoît Désiré Cochet
I believe this means that the street was mentioned in a charter as early as 1210. I have a Robert de Calletot, Seigneur de Berneval en Caux, circa 1250. Berneval is 5 miles east of Dieppe. Also Prieure de Saint Lo de Rouen and Seigneur de Raffetot in 1294. Raffetot is northeast of Bolbec.

(4) William Gernet of Normandy (c1150)
(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) (2) Robert Gernet (c1080) . . .

I have a "William Gernet of Normandy 1180-95 (MRS)." - from "The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States..." MRS = Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae sub Regibus Angliae of 1184 [Great Roll of the Norman Exchequer under the English Kings]. These were the Norman Pipe Rolls of 1183-1184.

(4) Raoul Gernet of Fécamp (c1150)
(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) (2) Robert Gernet (c1080) . . .

The next reference to the family in Fécamp deals with the rule of the sixth abbot of Fécamp, Raoul d'Argences, who served from 1189 to 1219.

"Les premieres annees de son gouvernment furent signalees par plusieurs dons et transactions particulieres. Guillaume Le Moine donna a l'abbaye une masure, situee dans la rue de Mer; et Raoul Gernet lui fieffa sa maison de la meme rue, relevant du fief de l'aumonerie de Fécamp. - from the "Histoire de la ville et de l'abbaye de Fécamp" by François Léonor Fallue and Leon Fallue
[Translation:] "The first year of his government [the abbot] were noteworthy for several donations and special transactions. William le Moine gave a messuage to the abbey, situated on the street of the Sea [Rue de Mer, which still runs parallel to the harbor in Fécamp]; and Raoul Gernet donated a house, near the fief of the chaplaincy of Fécamp."
So we may assume that the Gernet's held lands in the valley of the Valmont river, which runs through Fécamp. However this Gernet seems more middle-class then noble, like Nicolas, below.

Raoul is a form of the Anglo-Germanic given name Ralph, or the Latin Radulfus.

"L'un d'entre eux concerne un nomme Radulfus Gernet, bourgeois a la fin du XIIe siecle, pour un terrain rue de Mer, probablement localise aux abords du point ou sera plus tard construit le quai. Ce même Raoul Gernet, qu'on retrouve dans plusieurs actes de cette époque (ADSM 7 H 146 ; 7 H 623), pourrait être à l'origine de la rue Grenet, attestee en 1398, et dont on a pus remarquer la forme reguliere . . ." - from "" Village et ville au Moyen Age: les dynamiques morphologiques" page 280, by Bernard Gauthiez, Elisabeth Zadora-Rio, Henri Galinié

[Translation:] "One of these is called Ralph Gernet, a bourgeois of the end of the 12th century, of the territory of the rue de Mer, probably located near the point or as later built the dock. This same Raoul Gernet, found in several acts of this epoch, was the origin of Grenet street, certified in 1398, and which they could point out in regular form . . .]

(4) Sir Nicolas Gernet of Fécamp (c1150)
(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) (2) Robert Gernet (c1080) . . .

Chevalier. Later, in the paragraph mentioned above, another Gernet, Nicolas, is mentioned briefly.

". . . comme il desirait agrandir son etablissment d'une propriete voisine, son oncle acheta, d'un certain Roger Cannel, une maison et un terrain places pres des murs du chateau, entre la maison de l'ecole et l'hospice du monastere, dans le fief de Nicolas Gernet, chevalier." - from the "Histoire de la ville et de l'abbaye de Fécamp" by François Léonor Fallue and Leon Fallue
The citation refers to a school founded by Aichard, the nephew of the abbot. As he [the abbot’s nephew] wanted to extend his establishment to a nearby property, his uncle purchased, from a certain Roger Cannel a house and land near the castle walls, between he school building and the monastery’s hospice, in the fief of Nicolas Gernet, knight.
- Roger Cannel was referred to in 1255: "Roger de Leyburn has a charter renewed under the great seal of the lands late of Roger Cannel in Kent, which were the king's escheat, and which the king had formerly given to the said Roger de Leyburne in Gascony . . . " - from "Calendar of the Charter Rolls Preserved in the Public Record Office"

Does castle refer to the ducal palace? If so, the Gernet's held lands in the town of Fécamp as well as in the essart of Maupertuis. Raoul's nephew, Aichard d'Argences, succeeded him as abbot from 1219 to 1222.

The following, circa 1199, appears to confirm the status of Nicolas Grenet.

"Grands Roles des Echiquiers de Normandie
Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae sub Regibus Angliae
[The Great Roll of the Exchequer of Normandy under the Kings of England]
Scaccarium Normannie sub Regibus Francie (page 137)
Hanc Inquisitionem Fecerunt, per Juramenta, Petrus de Rediez [Bediez], Johannes de Montchevrel, Johannes Tharcio et Theobaldus de Cormelles.
. . .
Feoda Rogeri de Vallengitot. Rogerus de Vallengitot unum quarterium militis et heres de Magneville et Theobaldus de Gocequenville et filius Rogeri de Brueria unum feodum.
. . ..
Nicolaus Grenet unum feodum de eadem Clara apud Gireville
." - from Memoires by the Societe des Antiquairies de Normandie, page 191
A note that the Dictionaire Topographique says "Gireville pres de Fécamp [Gireville was near Fécamp] . . ." Gireville is today Greville [Gerville], in the canton of Fécamp. Clara probably referred to the de Clare family, an illegitimate branch of the ducal family. They owned 176 lordships, including 95 in Suffolk attached to the Honor of Clare. Richard, Earl of Hertford, was head of the clan around this time.

I have a Nicolas Gernet mentioned in the same sentence with Guillaume Du Vivier, Jehan Du Vivier. - from "Bulletin de la Société des antiquaires de Normandie." I have a Guillaume Du Vivier, chevalier, of Le Vivier-sur-Mer, in 1181.

Normandy in the 13th Century

When King John ascended the throne of England upon the death of Richard in 1199 he also took possession of the great Angevin Empire in France, including Normandy, Anjou, Poitou, Maine, Touraine and Aquitaine. However, the nobles of Anjou, Maine and Tours threw their support to John's nephew, Arthur, the son of Geoffrey, third son of Henry II, as rightful heir. War ensued and King Philip of France used the turmoil to further his own goals. By 1204 Normandy was in French hands, and Anjou and Poitou would follow.

Up to this time there had been many families with both English and Norman possessions. The French conquest of Normandy dramatically ruptured this link and forced families to make a choice between their allegiances. Those that remained faithful to England forfeited their Normans lands, those that chose the French King were dispossessed in England.

The abbey was also adversely affected, losing the revenue from its properties in England that it had acquired over the previous centuries.

Sir Nicholas survived the loss of Normandy by England's King John.

Footnote. "29.--Maupertuis, l.d. (c. Froberville et Saint-Léonard, cant. Fécamp). Ce fief de haubert appartient a la famille Gernet . . .

1) Gerville (cant. Fécamp).
Nicolas Gernet tient vers 1220 la terre de Gerville (Scripta, 642); le seigneur de Maupertuis présente a la cure en 1337 (Hist. de Fr., Pouillés, t. 2, p. 24 A)."
- from "L'Apparition des Seigneuries Chatelaines dans le Grand-Caux a L'epoque Ducale" in "Archéologie Médiévale"

Maupertuis. This fee, held by the tenure of knight-service, belonged to the Gernet family . . .

Gerville (canton of Fécamp).
Nicolas Gernet held the land of Gerville by 1220; the lord of Maupertuis presented the vicar in 1337.
Gerville is a village, just west of Maniquerville.

(5) Sir Roger Gernet of Fécamp (c1180)
(1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) (2) Robert Gernet (c1080) . . . (4) Sir Nicolas Gernet of Fécamp (c1150)

This man lived at the same time as (5) Sir Roger de Gernet (c1173) of Halton, the King's Forester. Could they have been the same man?

First we have a reference to "Roger Gernet (A.D. 283), 1207" in "La tapisserie de Bayeux: étude archéologique et critique" by Albert Marignan. Why would Roger be mentioined in a study of the Bayeux tapestry? From my attempt at translation the passage below appears to be a discussion of knightly costumes and the tendency, from the 11th to the 13th century, for the knights tunic to increase in length. Apparently there is an image, on a seal, of Roger Gernet showing him wearing a long tunic. My issue is, because this was a discussion of knights should we assume this was Sir Roger of Halton, or because it was a French study, should we assume this was Roger of Fécamp?

"Les premiers sceaux equestres n'indiquent pas la broigne. Le cavalier est a cheval, vetu d'une simple tunique courte. Ce n'est que vers la fin du XI siecle que le sceau de Gui de Laval (1095) nous donne une sorte de broigne. Mais c'est une longue robe qui descend jusqu'aux pieds, formee de petits anneaux, qu'on dirait colles sur l'etoffe. On peut en dire autant de celle que porte Raoul, comte de Vermandois (1116-1152). Les manches de cette tunique sont assez larges, tandis que la robe de Gui de Laval en est privee. On ne saurait donc parler d'un type unique; mais sa forme, ainsi que sa longueur, devait varier suivant les provinces. La premiere cotte de maille que nous fournissent les sceaux, c'est celle de Hervee de Dancy 1120. Elle ne descend que jusqu'aux genoux et, a partir de cette epoque, son usage, devint de plus en plus general. Sa coupe ne changea pas. Les sceaux nous prouvent qu'elle fut employee pendant toutle XII siecle et durant le premier tiers du XIII siecle. Vers la fin du aux manches courtes de Charles le Bon (1119-1127) (D. art. 27), Henry 1st (1100-1135) est vetu d'une simple tunique courte sans mailles, Etienne, roi d'Angleterre (1135-1154), a le meme costume, Hervee de Dancy (1120) a la premiere cotte de mailles courte, elle fut employee jusqu'au deuxieme tiers du XIII siecle. Robert de Gouvix (D.N. 295); de Mesnil-Fuguet (D.A. 405); Louis, comte de Blois, an. 1202; Gautier de Gournay (1207); Guillaume de Gue, 1211; Roger Gernet (A.D. 283), 1207; Bernard V, comte de Comminges (1226)."
My rough translation:
"The first equestrian seals showed no broigne [a French body defense for the thorax]. The knight on his horse, put on one simple court tunic. At the end of the 11th century on the seal of Gui de Laval (1095) we have one sort broigne. But on one a long gown that went down to the person's foot . . . The first coat of mail shown on the seals, was that of Hervee de Dancy 1120. It descended below the knee, and from that time its use became more and more general. The cut did not change. The seals prove that these were used during all the 12th century and during the first third of the 13th century. Towards the end of the manches courtes [short sleeves?] of Charles the Good (1119-1127), Henry 1 (1100-1135) was dressed in a simple court tunic without mail, Stephen, King of England (1135-1154), had the same costume, Hervee de Dancy (1120) had the first court coat of mail, which was used through the second third of the 13th century. Robert de Gouvix (D.N. 295); . . . Louis, Count of Blois, an. 1202; . . . Roger Gernet (A.D. 283), 1207; Bernard V, Count of Comminges (1226)."
Does the year given with Roger Gernet's name give us a clue that this must be Sir Roger? That was, after all, the year in which he succeeded his brother, William. Might his seal have included that date? Note that for the last man mentioned, Count Bernard, 1226 was the year he succeeded his father. For the Count of Blois, 1202 was when he went on Crusade.

Returning to the "Histoire de la ville et de l'abbaye de Fécamp" cited above, the paragraphs about Roger Gernet of Fécamp are for a period about twenty years after those of Raoul and Nicolas Gernet, above, that is circa 1218.

"Il semble que l'abbaye, a la suite de ces attaques successives, veuille s'assurer de l'appui des hommes qui lui etaient suzerainement attaches : elle fair renouveler a Roger Gernet, chevalier, possesseur de fiefs relevant de l'eglise de Fécamp, un engagement qui jette un grand jour sur l'organization feodale de cette epoque. Nous donnerous l'extrait succinct de ce curieux document : "
[Translation:] That the abbey of Fécamp, as a result of successive attacks, wants to assure the support of strong men and seeks to renew relations with Roger Gernet, knight [Sir Roger Gernet], who possesses fiefs nearby the church of Fécamp. The author goes on to say that he will provide a succinct extract of this curious document.
"Moi, Roger Gernet, declare, qu'au moyen des objets detailles ci-apres, qui me seront donnes annuellement par l'abbaye de Fécamp, a moi ou a mes heritiers, comme elle avait l'habitude de le faire a mon pere et a ses predecesseurs; savoir: un boisseau de froment, vingt-cinq quarts et deux boisseaux d'avione, mesure du grenier de l'abbe de Fécamp, livres par le gardien de ces greniers; un tonneau de vin d'Argences ou de France, si le premier vient a manquer, livre par le sommelier de l'abbayre, a condition que ce vin soit sain et potable : je rends foi et hommage a l'eglise de Fécamp, et m'oblige de lui appartenir, de defendre ses interets en toutes choses, et de me reunir trois et quatre fois par an aux hommes de l'abbe, pour aller, au besoin, au-dela de la Seine et des mers, venger les injures et les torts faits a l'eglise de Fécamp."
[Translation:] I, Roger Gernet, declare that, because of the products listed below which will be given to me annually by the abbey of Fécamp to me and my heirs, as in the past to my father and his predecessors, to wit a bushel [12.5 liters] of wheat, 25 quarts and two bushels of oats, as measured at the granary of the abbey of Fécamp and delivered by the warden of the granary; a barrel of wine from Argences [a vineyard of the abbey, it seems] or from other French origin if the former is not available, delivered by the sommelier of the abbey, provided that wine is in a healthy and potable condition; in exchange of which I render fealty to the church of Fécamp, and bind myself to be a member of it, to defend its interests in every way, and to meet three or four times a year with the abbot’s men to go, if necessary, beyond the Seine and the seas, to avenge the insults and wrongs done to the church of Fécamp.
This might mean that he meant to go find aid for the abbey in England. Jean-pierre Chartier says,
"My understanding is that he will go and fight the abbot’s enemies even if they are abroad. It is written that he will go abroad not to seek aid but to revenge the abbot.
The reference goes on,
"Roger Gernet declare, en terminant, qu'il prend ces engagements, a l'occasion des fiefs, relevant de ladite abbaye, qu'il possede dans le lieu nomme Malptus (Maupertuis)."
[Translation:] Roger Gernet declares that he takes these commitments because of the various fiefs related to the aforementioned abbey that he owns in the place called Maupertuis.
This was a re-enfeoffment. Maupertuis, held by the Grenet family since circa 1094, was 3 kilometers north of Maniquerville, the ancestral seat of the Belet family.
"Cet acte, passe a Fécamp, a cela de remarquable, qu'il n'est plus signe par les grands seigneurs d'Angleterre; ce sont sous Normands, maintenant attaches de corps et d'ame a la France, dont les noms figurent sur cette piece. Parmi eux on distingue H. d'Estoteville, Raoul de Kenouville, Rich. d'Yvetot, W. de Tortechaine, Wil. de Wistanval, Pierre de Crikebeuf, W. Malet, Simon des Hogues, Joseph de Thieboutot, Eust. Bellet, Aichard le maitre des ecoles, et beaucoup de'autres." - from the "Histoire de la ville et de l'abbaye de Fécamp" by François Léonor Fallue and Leon Fallue
[Translation:] That act, passed at Fécamp, was remarkable insofar as it is not signed by the great lords of England; they are all Normans, now tied body and soul to France, those whose names appear in this document. Amongst them are to be noticed H. d'Estoteville, Raoul de Kenouville, Rich. d'Yvetot, W. de Tortechaine, Wil. de Wistanval, Pierre de Crikebeuf, W. Malet, Simon des Hogues, Joseph de Thieboutot, Eust. Bellet, Aichard the school master [the abbot's nephew], and many others.
This seems to mean that in 1218 the abbey acknowledged that Normandy was now, and forever, part of France. The men named were rendering fealty to the abbot. The d'Estoteville's had possessed estates in the region since the time of Robert Curthose. See d'Yvetot below.

The French Annexation

When Philippe-Auguste, the King of France, annexed Normandy to the crown, rather than putting in a new Duke, a dispossesion of the Norman nobility began. Much like the carpetbaggers of the American Reconstruction period, minor nobility from the Ile de France flooded the region, using their influence with the King to seize Norman estates. At this time Rouen lost its rights over the Seine river traffic and, when the citizens rebelled over new taxes on commerce, the town bells were seized and the toll bridge over the river was destroyed. It may have been during this period when the abbey of Fécamp complained of successive attacks.

England finally recognized the loss of Normandy to France in the treaty of Paris in 1259.

A snippet from another reference has,

"Le nommé Roger Gernet, s'obligeait à défendre l'abbaye, même au delà des mers, à condition de recevoir d'elle, 'comme ses ancêtres l'avaient fait, certains dons en nature, entre autres un tonneau de [?] d'Argences . . . ." - from "Memories."

[Translation:] "The one named Roger Gernet, bound himself to defend the abbey, even beyond the seas, . . .
This confirms what Jean-pierre Chartier suggested earlier, that they went abroad not to seek aid but to fight the abbey’s enemies."
[Translation:] ". . . certain donations in kind, between others a barrel of [?] of Argences"
Jean-Pierre Chartier says, "I couldn’t find that passage, but the missing word must be “vin” (wine) or a synonym of it as was mentioned above in the list of what Roget Gernet received from the Fécamp abbey. I have found the passage below in the “Histoire de (...) Fécamp” you used (p. 291) concerning the origin of the white wine produced by the Fécamp monks, from vines planted by the English when they occupied the land. It says that the English did not succeed in organising the local administration or even its agriculture “because they were foreigners and, for that reason, were subjected to distrust and contempt”, except for some vines which they brought form the province of Aquitaine (the Bordeaux area) and from which the monks made an abundant harvest producing a pleasant white wine (“un petit vin blanc”)."

Another snippet has ". . . charte de 1218, par laquelle Roger Gernet se reconnaît vassal de l' abbaye- de Fécamp, et s' oblige à défendre ses intérêts . . . (bailliage de Caux - 1218)" - from the "Annuaire du Conseil Héraldique de France" published by the Conseil Héraldique de France".

[Translation:] ". . . charter in 1218 , by which Roger Gernet is recognized vassal of the Abbaye de Fécamp, and it requires him to defend its interests . . . (bailiwick of Caux - 1218)."

"Richard d'Yvetot figure en 1218, avec H. d'Estouteville, W. Mallet et plusieurs autres, comme témoin d'une charte par laquelle Roger Gernet se reconnaît vassal de l'abbaye de Fécamp, et s'oblige à défendre ses intérêts en toutes choses et à se joindre trois ou quatre fois par an aux hommes de l'abbé, pour aller, « au besoin au-delà de la Seine et des mers », venger les injures et les torts faits à l'abbaye (2).

Là se borne ce que nous savons de Richard qui, deja . . ." - from "Histoire de la Principauté d'Yvetot: Ses Rois, Ses Signeurs," page 25, by Auguste Beaucousin

[Translation:] Richard d'Yvetot figured in 1218, with H. d'Estouteville, W. Mallet and several others, as witness to a charter in which Roger Gernet recognized himself as vassal to the abbey of Fécamp, and obliged to defend its interests in all things and to join with the men of the abbey three or four times per year, for a journey beyond the Seine and the sea (to the Kings of France and England?), to avenge the injuries and the wrongs done to the abbey.]

- Richard d'Yvetot was styled the King, or Prince, of Yvetot, a petty kingdom in the Pays du Caux, circa 1203.
- Henry d'Estouteville, who died after 1232, was Seigneur de Valmont et Rames, in Normandy, and had extensive estates in England.
- William Mallet was the descendent of a companion of the Conqueror. In Normandy the family held the castle of Graveille, near Havre.

Yet another version of the same event has,

"Le dernier acte ou figure Richard d'Yvetot, comune temoin, est une charte de 1218, par laquelie Robert Gernet se reconnalt vassal de l'abbaye de Fécamp, et s'oblige a defendre ses interets en toutes choses, et a se joindre troise ou quatre fois par an aux hommes de l'abbe, pour aller, au besoin au-dela de la Seine et dos mers, redresser les torts faits a labbaye." - from "Annuaire de Conseil Heraldique de France""

The following snippet is undated.

"Nom du fermier [tenant or farmer]: GRENET
Terme: St Jean
Somme due
[total duty]: 437 Bx froment [wheat]
269 id. avoine
- from "L'Abbaye benedictine de Fécamp: ouvrage scientifique du XIIIe centenaire" page 65

I have not been able to find any further references to the Gernet/Grenet family in this part of Normandy. Note that the fee of Maupertuis reverted to the Abbey in 1503 leaving open the option that the family continued their tenure until that time.

Chernet of Bouquemaison/Grenet of Picardy

Here is, perhaps, another line of Gernets in France. In the references below they use the spelling Chernet or Krenet - an interesting amalgam of Ghernet, Grenet and Kernet. Note too the William de Chernet of Hampshire who was a vassal of Hugh de Port.

Bouquemaison is about 100 km northeast of Fécamp in the arrondissement of Amiens, in the Somme departement, in northwestern Picardy. It is equadistant between Abbeville and Arras, and north of Amiens. The brothers Nicholas and Raoul are interesting because they may be analogous to the Nicholas and Raoul Grenet of Fécamp, above.

(4) Arnoul Chernet (c1140)

Or Kremet. Of Bouquemaison.

"Leur plus insigne bienfaiteur fut Arnoul Chernet qui leur donna a cultiver (1155) un doamine d'une charrue situe a Bouquemaison, voisin de celui que l'Abbaye de Cercamp possedait a Canteleu." - from the "Mémoires de la Société des antiquaires de Picardie"

Their [the abbey of Cercamp] more distinguished benefactor was Arnoul Chernet who gave them one ploughland to cultivate (1155) situated in Bouquemaison, near the one that the Abbey de Cercamp [due north of Bouquemaison] possessed in Canelue [today's Canteleux, just west of Bouquemaison].

(5) Oger [Roger] Chernet (c1170)
(4) Arnoul Chernet (c1140)

"Oger, fils d'Arnoul, imitant sa generosite, y ajouta cette partie du territore qui s'etendait depuis la terre donnee precedemment par son pere jusqu'a celui du Soich . . ." - from the "Mémoires de la Société des antiquaires de Picardie"

Oger, the son of Arnoul, imitated his generosity, and added this part of territory . . . [?]

(6) Nicholas Chernet (c1200)
(4) Arnoul Chernet (c1140) (5) Oger Chernet (c1170)

(6) Raoul Chernet (c1200)
(4) Arnoul Chernet (c1140) (5) Oger Chernet (c1170)

(7) Jean Chernet (c1230)
(4) Arnoul Chernet (c1140) (5) Oger Chernet (c1170) (6) Raoul Chernet (c1200)

Lord of Bouquemaison.

"Nous l'avons tente pour Jean, seigneur de Bouquemaison, en 1260, et voici la filiation que nous proposons a ce sujet. Jean descendrait d'Arnoul Chernet par Oger et Raoul. Les Chartes donnent pour fils au bienfaiteur d'Arouaise, Oger et Robert. Oger, dans un acte de 1189, nous est signale comme ayant deux fils: Nicolas et Raoul. Enfin une piece de 1260, emanee de Jean, fait figurer parmi les temoins Raoul, son pere, qui pourrait bien etre le second fils d'Oger Kremet ou Chernet."

- from the "Mémoires de la Société des antiquaires de Picardie"

The Grenet names continued in Northern France. Below are some examples which indicate that the family continued to prosper.

(9) Sir Guillaume Grenet (c1300)

A knight, he married a noble woman of Picardy. Could he be an heir of the Chernet's of Bouquemaison? Note the mention of the village of Béthune, north of Bouquemaison, which is shared by a number of the Grenets to follow.

"Marie des Plancques, alliée [female ally, i.e. wife] à Guillaume Grenet, chevalier, morte en 1374." - from "Nobiliaire universel de France" by Nicolas Viton Saint-Allais.
Marie des Plancques was the daughter of Sir Hugues des Plancques II, "seigneur de Wendin et d"Espreaux".
"Des Plancques. En Artois. Branche de la maison de Béthune.--
Voy. Béthune.--Jean des Plancques, Sr de Wendin, pere de Jean, Marie, alliee a Guillaume Grenet, et Jeanne, abbesse d'Estrun."
- from "Recherches généalogiques sur les comtés de Ponthieu"
"[D]es Plancques (un petit village près de Fauquembergues), was in Picardy. I think Wendin is Vendin. D'Espreaux was Preaux. The Abbey of Preaux was in Ponteaudemer, Normandy - see the story of the d'Beaumonts above. The Grenet name was mentioned, along with des Plancques, in the "Nobiliaire des Pays-Bas et du Comte de Bourgogne" and the Armorial de Flandre, Artois et Picardie." I think Pays-Bas is the Netherlands.

Jean Grenet of Béthune (c1350)

The bailiff of Béthune. "GRENET. En Artois. Porte d'azur à 3 gerbes d'or liées de gueules 2 & 1. Dit aussi Grevet. Jean Grenet, bailli de Béthune, 28 août 1363". - from " Recherches généalogiques sur les comtés de Ponthieu" by Louis-Eugene de La Gorge-Rosny. There are many references to a "la famille de Grenet d'Artois."

Baudouin Grenet of Artois (c1450)

"On lit, dans une sentence de noblesse de l'election d'Artois en faveur de la maison de Grenet, et l'abbe Douay rapporte que "Baudouin Grenet, qui vint s'etasblir en Artois, etait fils puine de Jean Cumaing, comte de Bucquam, gouverneur et chancelier du royaume d'Ecosse en 1498 . . . armories des Grenet sont: de sable au lion leoparde de'argent, lampasse et arme de gueules." That is, a black lion, striding (like the "leopards" of the British royal arms), on a red shield. - from "Les Ecossais en France, les Français en Ecosse" by Francisque Michel.

Artois is in Pas-de-Calais, in northen France. Its main cities are Arras and Béthune.

(15) Mathieu Grenet of Béthune (1452)

Of Béthune. A Benedictine monk of the abbey of St Martin de Tournai. A lawyer and writer. He made a pilgrimage to Rome in 1500.

"Mathieu Grenet (1452-1503) bénédictin et écrivain [writer] à Saint-Martin de Tournai: sa vie et son œuvre." by P.J. Grieck.
"originaire de Béthune, procureur et chapelain d'honneur . . . religieux, chroniqueur et pelerin de Rome en l'an 1500"" - from "Revue d'histoire ecclesiastique"
"Dom Mathias Grenet, bénédictin de Saint-Martin de Tournai (l'auteur a retrouvé à la Bibliothèque nationale de Paris un travail de Grenet que l'on croyait perdu [labor of Grenet about lost belief?]; c'est un resume de la regie de saint Benoit)." - from "Revue Historique"

(16) Guillaume Grenet of Béthune (c1470)

1509. "Guillaume Grenet, consiller à Béthune.", also 1548. "de Guillaume Grenet, receveur et consilleur du Roi à Béthune."- from "Inventaire sommaire des Archives départementales du Nord"

(17) Jacques Grenet of Béthune (c1500)

1545. "Lettres de commision: . . . Jacques Grenet, tresorier des guerres . . . ". I'm not clear what town Jacques may be from, but the region is Artois/Flanders, or there about.

(16) Claude Grenet of Béthune (c1480)

Of Béthune. Undoubtedly of the same family. Chaplain to the abbe of St Bertin.

"Au XVI siecle . . . Le 22 mars 1546 Claude Grenet de Béthune, gardien des enfants [caretaker of the children], chapelain de l'abbe de St-Bertin, Englebert d'Espagne, et prevot d'Arques [provost of Arques], fut nomme 1er prieur [prior?] de St-Pry-lez-Béthune." - from "Dictionnaire historique et archéologique du département du Pas-de-Calais"
There is a Chateau d'Arques in Normandy, near Dieppe.

(11) Simon Grenet (c1370)

The father of Marguerite (1400) who married "Chrestien de Werquin, bailli de La Gorgue, 1396." - from "Recherches généalogiques sur les comtés de Ponthieu".

Aubert Grenet (c1500)

Jean ou Aubert Grenet married Marguerite Castelain v. 1532-1569. - from "La Chambre des comptes de Lille (1477-1667)" by Mireille Jean.

Jeanne Grenet (c1550)

A Jeanne Grenet married Jacques de Rebreviette[s], the son of Antoine, Seigneur de Thibeauville of Picardy - from "Recherches généalogiques sur les comtés de Ponthieu". I also have a Jeanne Grenet who married Jean [sic] de Rebreviettes in 1574. She was the daughter of "d'Aubert Grenet et de Marguerite de Castellain." - from "Annales de la Société d'émulation pour l'etude de l'histoire "

Jean Grenet de Florimond (c1620)

"Jean, Sr [seigneur] de Florimond, cape de chevau-legers." married Catherine de Royer of Picardy in 1647 - from "Recherches généalogiques sur les comtés de Ponthieu". Also, under the name of Catherine Rouer, born 25 November 1630, "Elle fut mariée le 2l mars 1647, à Jean de Grenet, chevalier, seigneur de Florimont, lieutenant d'infanterie et depuis capitaine de cavalerie." - from " Nobiliaire de Saint-Mihiel". Florimont is in the Ile-de-France.

There is a whole line of Grenet de Florimond's in the 17th-19th centuries, including a "Nicholas-Francois Grenet, chevalier de Florimond, ancien capitaine d'infanterie", born circa 1750. He apparently commanded a Flanders regiiment. Their arms appear to have been "porte d'azur au soleil d'or".

The Grenets/Gernets of Rouen and Bruges

Moving in the opposite direction of the Chernet's of Bouquemaison, a large population of Grenets are found in Rouen, southeast of Fécamp, from the end of the middle ages through the 19th century. "Familles protestantes du pays de Caux" by Charles Marc Bost lists the Grenets. Today members of the Gernet family can be found in France, Germany, Austria and Russia, and all the modern nations which evolved out of those 19th century empires.

Anthoenis Ghernet of Rouen (c1450)

"Zij verklaren, dat koopman Anthoenis Ghernet (ook Garnet) uit Rouaan een gesloten doos aan Michiel Norijs in bewaring gaf. Nu verschijnt een collega van Garnet, geheten Jan Labbe, bijgenaamd Petit Jean, die beweert dat die doos van hem is en door hem . . . " [They declare, that Anthony Ghernet (also Garnet), merchant, from Rouen, gave a closed container to Michael Norijs in deposit. Then a colleague of Garnet appeared, called Jan Labbe.]

"Anthuenis Ghernet uit Rouaan liet bij zijn vertrek in het huis van Claus de Pape in de Lange Potterstraat een kist met inhoud achter. Claus laat schepenen 14 januari 1497 vastleggen, dar zich daarin bevonden zes tinnen . . ." [Anthony Ghernet from Rouen [liet] towards their departure in the house of Claus de pape in the Long Potter street from coffin [!?] with contents after . . .]

". . . boogschutter en dienaar van de heer van Beveren, admiraal van de zee, dat hij zich goed herinnert, drie of vier jaar geleden aan Anthoine Ghernet een door de admiraal bezegelde sauvegardebrief te hebben uitgereikt. Het ging om vijftig ton vrachtgoed bestermd voor du . . ." [archer and follower of the Lord of Beveren, Admiral of the Sea, who he well remembered, three or four years ago [aan] Anthony Ghernet through the Admiral [reward] [letter] to have procured.]

- from "Paas- En Koudemarkten Te Bergen Op Zoom, 1365-1565" by C. J. F. Slootmans
Adolph of Burgundy was Admiral of the Netherlands and Lord of Veere and Beveren from 1489 to 1540. He was also extensively invoved in trade with the Hanseatic states of the Baltic.

History of The Netherlands

While early on a part of the Holy Roman Empire, in the 14th and 15th centuries, Flanders, Holland, Zeeland, Gelderland, and Brabant passed to the Dukes of Burgundy. Though the Dutch towns and ports were slower in economic development than Flanders and Brabant, they began to rival them in the 15th century. They nearly all belonged to the Hanseatic League and enjoyed vast autonomous privileges.

By the marriage of Mary of Burgundy to the Empereor Maximilian I in 1477, the Netherlands passed into the control of the Habsburg Empire. In 1555 Empereor Charles V granted control of Spain and the Netherlands to his son, Philip II, whose oppressive rule led to a war of independence waged by the Dutch from 1568 to 1648.

Jacob Ghernet


". . . opdroeg aan Jacob Ghernet Does- . . ." - from "Verslagen omtrent 'srijks oude archieven" by Netherlands Allgemeen Rijksarchief

[. . . ordered to Jacob Ghernet ]

Jhennin Ghernet of Bruges (c1400)

In 1445 the town of Bruges, in Flanders, drew up a scheme for a lottery to help the poor. Jhennin appears to have taken part.

"La Loterie a Bruges

Le 24 Fevrier 1445 (v.s.) eut lieu a Bruges le tirage d'une loterie, une des plus importantes qu'on eut vues jusque la; et qui fut suivie, a cinq mois d'intervalle, le 29 Aout 1446 (n.s.), d'une seconde.
. . .
v pe God ende Maria diet al verleent. St p. Loonus van den Berghe.
v pe Jhennin Ghernet en lancre.
v pe Heinric Loopin."

- from "La Flandre, Revue des Monuments D'Histoire et D'Antiquites" by Louis Gilliodts van Severen, W.H.J. Weale [and others]

"V pe" appears to be the amount paid into the lottery; those above paid "x pe," "xx pe," to a top of "xxv pe." Could "en lancre" have meant Lancaster, England or the commune of Beaucourt-sur-Lancre, in Picardy, France? The town of L'Ancre, on the Ancre river, is northeast of Amiens. It was renamed Albert in 1617.

Roger Grenet

A merchant of Rouen.

Undated. ". . . lem qu'il avait effectué en compagnie de Guillaume Delahaye et Roger Grenet, marchands respectivement de Caen et de Rouen. La relation, heureusement conservée, de ce voyage, contient de fort precieuses, indications sur le commerce des port du Levant, Famagouste, Nicocie, Beyrouth et Damas et surtout sur l'extraor- . . ." - from "Le commerce maritime normand à la fin du Moyen Age"" by Michel Mollat

Guillaume Grenet (c1600)

1653. "Lettres de provision de Ms. Guillaume Grenet, a l'office de conseiller controlleur esleu, en l'ellection de Caudebec." - from "Mémoires" by the "Société des antiquaires de Normandie,"

David Grenet

C1790. "Maitre cordonnier a Rouen."

Jean Grenet (1684)

A merchant of Rouen.

"Le 30e du moy de may 1760, le corps de M. Jean Grenet, age de 76 ans, marchand a Rouen, ancien officier de la compagnie des arquebusiers de cette ville, decede du jour d'hier, muni des sacraments de penitence, eucharistie et extreme-onction, a ete inhume en cette eglis par moy cure de Saint-Cande, soussigne, en presence de discrete personne M. Pierre-pierre Grenet, vicaire de cette par., fils du defunt. Signe Grenet, prestre vicaire. Grenet encore vicaire, dec. 1763." - from the "Bulletin de la Commission des antiques de la Seine-Inferieur" by the "Commission des antiquites du departement de la Seine-Inferieure, Rouen"

Abbe Pierre-pierre Grenet (c1700)

"Abbé Grenet, ancien curé de Saint-Pierre-du-Châtel à Rouen." ". . . ecrits en 1743 par l'acolyte P.-P. Grenet, du clerge de Saint-Jean . . ."

"Grenet [Pierre-Paul], ne a Rouen, cure de Saint-Pierre-du-Chatel en cette ville, juge invite par les Acadeciens du Palinod en 1769." - from "Les trois siècles palinodiques: ou, Histoire générale des palinods de Rouen" by Joseph André Guiot, Albert Tougard

Grenet "the Jacobin" (c1750)

Another reference points out that "of the more sanguinary Jacobins of Rouen were named Grenet and Grandcourt."

Louis-Franklin Grenet (1795)

He was born "ne en 1795 d'une familie de fabricants et d'armateurs de Rouen." - from "Biographie rouennaise" by Théodore Éloi Lebreton. Monsieur Grenet of Rouen invented an early gelatin, called grenetine, in 1829. There was also an associated "L'ancienne maison Grenet" owned by the manufacturing firm of "M. Grenet fils" on the rue du Renard, in Rouen. He died in Rouen on 15 February 1832. "Chev. de la Leg. d'hom." - from the "Nouvelle biographie normande" by Noémi Noire Oursel.

Paul Bernard Grenet

Professor Paul Grenet, a Platonic scholar, of the Grand Seminaire at Rouen. He wrote "Les 24 thèses thomistes: de l'évolution à l'existence," "Pierre Teilhard de Chardin ou le Philosophe Malgre Lui", and "Le Thomisme."

The Grenet's of Chartres

There was also a Grenet family of the 11th century living approximately 200 kilometers south of Fécamp in the diocese of Chartres, the land of the Counts of Blois in the pays du Chartrain, in and around the cathedral city of Chartres. This was on the contested border between Blois and Normandy. Today this is the Eure-et-Loire departmente of France, left. These Grenets were, then, not Norman, but French. See FranceBalade for a marvelous, French language, site detailing the history of the region.

It is clear that the family had a long and notable history in the Chartrain. There is in Chartres a street, the Rue des Grenets, in the Quartier Saint-Aignan.

"La rue des Grenets s'appelait autrefois rue Saint-Aignan; elle ne prit le nom qu'elle porte aujourd hui que vers le XVIe siecle. La famille Grenet, l'une des plus distinguees et des plus anciennes de la magistratrue Chartrain, possedait, en 1500, plusieurs maisons de cette rue, dans la censive des Courtins. Un titre de Beaulieu, de 1487, fait mention de l'hotel de Chapeau-Rouge, touchant aux jardins du prieure de Saint-Vincent, et de celui de la Caige, voisin cloitre Saint-Aignan."

- from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois

(1) Nicholas Grenet of Chartres (c1050)

Du Pays Chartrain. A knight, presumably. If a son of Guerin/le Grenetier, and brother to (1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050), he did not come to England.

"La famille Grenet est une des plus anciennes de la ville de Chartres : un de ses membres prit part à la première croisade . . ." - from "Mémoires By Société archéologique et historique de l'Orléanais"
Nicholas took part in the 1st Crusade. I have assumed as a knight, but I suppose as easily in some supporting role, I suppose. His family was, admitedly, said to be of the bourgeoisie.
Principales Familles du Pays Chartain [Principal Families of the Province of Chartrain]
Aux XIe, XIIe, XIIIe et XIVe Siecles
[Of the 11th, 12th, 13th and 14th Centuries]
1er. -- Bourgeoisie Chartrain . . .
[Middle-class of the Chartrain]
1096 -- Grenet (N.) croise.

- from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois
Croise means crossed, that is went on the First Crusade, circa 1096, as did Duke Robert of Normandy, whom Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp called lord. He is more precisely identified as Nicholas Grenet in "The Coudray and History" by Laure Leblanc Binet. Were Nicholas and Willelmus related? As brothers or cousins? Also, did Nicholas return from the Crusade? Most did not, dying from disease, starvation and war. Note that Eustace Grenet, below, served King Baldwin of Jerusalem in a high position in the early 1100's.

The First Crusade

The First Crusade was launched in 1095 by Pope Urban II to not only liberate the Holy Land from Muslim rule, but to harness the violent tendencies of the European knights. The cause was preached throughout Europe and caught the imaginations of the knights and of the peasantry. The ill-fated Peasants Crusade, led by Peter the Hermit and made up of an undisciplined rabble, ended with most of its adherents either dead or sold into slavery. More successful was the Barons' Crusade. Raymond IV of Toulouse led the knights of Provence. Those of Lorraine were led by Godfrey of Bouillon. The Normans marched under their Duke, Robert Curthose. Associated armies were led by Robert II of Flanders, Stephen Henry, Count of Blois and Hugh of Vermandois. Nicholas Gernet would have marched under his lord, Count Stephen Henry. The Count's son, a nephew of the Conqueror, would later usurp the English throne as King Stephen.

These armies took different paths to Constantinople, arriving there between November 1096 and May 1097. It took them two years to reach Jerusalem, marching through hostile territory and laying siege to both Nicea and Antioch. In 1099 they captured Jerusalem. They established a number of Crusader states which survived for over 200 years. See the story of Eustace Grenet, a knight and crusader lord serving Baldwin II, the King of Jerusalem, below.

Michael Stanhope writes,

". . . that nearly all tenurial relationships in post-conquest England were based upon earlier relationships in Normandy. Such relationships were nearly always based upon marriages between a small nucleus of families . . . [for example] knowing that Vivian Gernet was a tenant of Roger Montgomery, Count of Poitou, it can reasonably be assumed that they were related . . . These marriages acted as 'peace treaties' between powerful factions, as 'insurance policies' against ducal authority; as a means of mutual promotion etc . . . these families considered themselves to be the same family, and repeated marriages between the various factions served to underline this bond."
Michael thinks that the most likely connection was in the family of William Talvas. They would be allied through marriage with the Montgomery family, with whom the Gernet family was closely associated in the early years after the conquest.

The Talvas Family of Bellême

This family was French in origin, not Norman. ". . . the Norman Duke encouraged his nobles to marry into neighboring lineages in order to extend his influence over adjacent lands. In the mid-eleventh century the marriage of Roger II de Montgomery to Mabel, daughter of William de Bellême, eventually brought her family the Talvas to heel . . ." from "The Norman Frontier in the Twelfth and Early Thirteenth Centuries." The first two generations shown below are questionable.

(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983)

Or Ivo. Of Beauvoisie, Picardie. Seigneur de Creil [Creully]. Note that members of the Gernet family would live in Picardy in later generations. When Duke Richard I of Normandy was 12 years old he was living in the castle of Laon as the ward of Louis IV, King of France. Yves de Creil, according to Norman historians, betrayed a plot to murder Richard to Osmund, the Duke's tutor and squire. Osmund had Richard feign illness and carried him out in a russet cloak, fleeing to the castle of Coucy, held by Bernard, Count of Senlis.

The "Ecclesiastical History" of Orderic Vitalis mentions an "Ivo de Credolio regis balistarius" [literally, royal crossbow-man, but more likely officer in charge of the royal siege train of catapults, ballista, and trebuchet], circa 945. He married Geile de Ponthieu (912-965). In politics the family were Robertians, followers of the Dukes of France who would become the Capetian Kings of France after the final fall of the Carolingian Kings.

(-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983)

Also as Fulques or Fulcuin de Creil. Count de Corbonais [Carbonais/Carbonas/Corbona]. He married Rolais [Rohais, Rothais]. This is widely considered to be a false attribution.

(-4) Yves de Bellême (c930-997)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?)

Or Ivo, Ives, or Evas. Of Oise, Picardy, France. Gouverneur de Creil. The first lord of Bellême. A vassal of Hugh Capet, Duke of France and later King of France. In about 960 Duke Richard of Normandy was attacked by Thibault, Count de Blois et Chartres, and Rouen was beseiged. Rotrou de Chateaudun led Thibault's army. Yves de Creil supported the Duke and, with the help of the Danes, Richard won the day. The Danes went on to plunder the Eure valley. Thibault subsequently gave Rotrou lands around Nogent and Mortagne, what became the County of Mortagne-Perche, as a march against Normandy. With the connivance of Duke Richard, Hugh Capet gave Yves the Seigniory of Bellême as a march against Blois. Yves was subsequently styled Ives Count de Bellême. He later obtained Saosnois (in Maine), Alencon, and the castle of Domfront.

Yves married Godehilde of Ponthieu, the daughter of Hilduin, Count of Montreuil et de Ponthieu. Alternately his wife was Mathilde of Conde-Sur-Noirau. See the discussion in Yves de Bellême by Stewart Baldwin. Another great site for medieval French history and genealogy is France Balade.

His children were,
(-3) Guillaume de Bellême (963-1027)
(-3) Yves de Bellême, "Ivonis de Belismo [et] filiis illius Guilelmo"
(-3) Avesgaudus de Bellême, the Bishop of Le Mans, "Avesgaudo præsule atque Ivone"
(-3) Godehilis, who married Albert de la Ferté-en-Beauce; secondly Raoul III Vicomte du Maine
(-3) Hildeburgis, who married Haimo of Chateau-du-Loir

(-3) Guillaume de Bellême (963-1027)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (c930-997)

Or William Talvas I. Also as William Talevas or Willelmus Talvacius. The son of Ivo de Bellême and Godehilde. He profited from being the vassal of several competing lords. Comte de Bellême, as a fief of the King of France, Comte d'Alencon, as a fief of the Duke of Normandy, and Lord of the castle of Domfront, as a fief of the Count of Maine. Lord of Seez and Seigneur de Saosnois. Comte de Perche.

"High among these great houses, the third in rank among the original Norman nobility, stood the house of Belesme, whose present head was William, surnamed Talvas. The domains held by his family, partly of the Crown of France [including Belesme], partly of the Duchy of Normandy [valleys of the Orne and Sarthe], might almost put him on a level with princes rather than the ordinary nobles." - from "The History of the Norman Conquest of England: Its Causes and Its Results" by Edward Augustus Freeman
"He fought many battle with the Count of Maine to maintain his control of Saosnais. He married Mathilde [Maud] de Ganelon [Gonelon] (972-1033), of Conde-Sur-Noireau, in Calvados. His second wife was Adelais [?]. It is said he was named Talvas for the shield called a Talvas which he carried.

He favored Duke Richard III of Normandy over his brother, Robert "the Devil." On the death of Richard Guillaume refused to accept Robert as his successor and rebelled. He was defeated and besieged in his castle of Alencon. He was forced to beg for mercy, approaching the Duke with bare feet and a saddle on his shoulders. He later rebelled once more and his forces were destroyed at the Battle of Blavon. William died on 6 October 1027. Guillaume de Jumièges names "Guérin, Foulques, Robert et Guillaume" as the four sons of "Guillaume de Belesme, fils d'Yves." He may have had as many as six sons.
(-2) Fulk
(-2) Robert
(-2) Yves [Ivo], Bishop of Seez
(-2) Guillaume II, father of Mabel
(-2) Guerin [Warin/Warinus]
(-2) Benedict, a monk

(-2) Fulk Talvas (c995)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (c930-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027)

Foulques. "Of his other sons, Fulk, presuming to ravage the ducal territory, was killed in battle." He died at the battle of Blavon in 1027.

(-2) Robert Talvas (c995-1027/1033)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (c930-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027)

He survived the Battle of Blavon and inherited his father's land after 1027. Seigneur of Bellême, Alencon and Saosnois. He was taken prisoner by the men of Le Mans and kept prisoner at the castle of Ballon for two years "and beheaded by way of reprisals for a murder committed by his followers." - from "The History of the Norman Conquest of England: Its Causes and Its Results" by Edward Augustus Freeman. These followers were led by a vassal, William, the son of Giroise, who you'll read about again, below. Orderic Vitalis noted that Robert was assasinated in 1033 by the Count of Maine.

(-2) Yves Talvas (c997)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (c9340-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027)

Or Ivo. Per Orderic Vitalis, he was lord of Bellême before he became the Bishop of Seez in 1035. Some sources make this Ivo the brother of (-3) Guillaume. That is, that Robert, above, son and heir of Guillaume, was in turn succeeded by his uncle Yves (Post mortem autem Rotberti, filii Wilelmi, Ivo suus avunculus, succeedens heriditati dedit, pro anima sui nepotis Rotberti).

Yves "did not scruple to attack and burn his own church, when it had been turned into a fortress by certain turbulent nobles." He was charged with sacrilege for this at the Council of Rheims and bidden by Pope Leo, as a penance, to rebuid the church. He traveled as far as Apulia and Constantinople raising funds to do this - from "The History of the Norman Conquest of England: Its Causes and Its Results" by Edward Augustus Freeman. After the murder of his nephew, Arnulf, he took possession of the chateau de Bellême. This was later in the possession of the Montgomery's. He died in 1070.

The "Dictionary of National Biography" by Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee refer to "Mabel's uncle, William, bishop of Seez." Since her father was William, I assume that's a mistake for Yves.

(-2) Guillaume II Talvas (995-1052)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (c9340-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027)

William de Talvas, son of William of Bellême and Mathilde of Condé-sur-Noireau, in the Calvados region. Per Orderic Vitalis, he was never called William of Bellême. He assumed the Bellême estates, probably in 1035, after the murder of his brother, Robert, in 1033 and after a short period of rule by his other brother, or uncle, Yves.

Count d'Alencon and Bellême. He famously cursed William I in his cradle. His reputation was that of a wicked man. He was a kinsman of Robert "the Devil," Duke of Normandy.

He married Hildeburge de Beaumont (1000-1063), the daughter of Arnoulf de Meaumont. He had three children, Robert, who died in 1034, Arnulf, whom he disowned, and Mabel. He was, supposedly, displeased by Hildeburge's piety so he had her murdered. He later married Godehilde, the daughter of Raoul IV, Viscount of Mans. At this wedding he was accused of attacking his vassal, William, the son of Geroy [Giroise], and blinding and mutilating him. William was ostracized for this outrage and was eventually expelled from his fiefs by his son, Arnulf. The Montgomery family befriended him and he married his daughter, Mabel, to Roger de Montgomery. William's fiefs passed to the Montgomery's, who had to fight to gain them.

He died sometime between 1052 and 1060. His children were Arnulf and Mabel, by his first wife, and Oliver, possibly by his second wife or he was illegitimate.
(-1) Arnulf Talvas de Alencon (c1015)
(-1) Mabel Talvas de Alencon (1015-1080)
(-1) Oliver Talvas (c1015)

(-1) Arnulf Talvas de Alencon (c1015)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (940-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027) (-2) Guillaume II Talvas (995-1048)

Or Arnold. He rebelled against his father, seizing his estates, and was subsequently disowned by him. He was expelled from his lands, probably by the force of Montgomery arms, and died in exile in 1048, supposedly strangled in his sleep by a demon, just as his uncle, Guerin, was.

(-1) Mabel Talvas de Alencon (1015-1080)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (940-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027) (-2) Guillaume II Talvas (995-1048)

Of Alencon. She was the daughter and heir of William Talvas II. She married Roger de Montgomery (1030-1094). She died on 2 December 1079/80 at the Chateau de Bures-sur-Dives in France, apparently poisoned. Their children were
(1) Sybille de Montgomery (c1050), who married Robert FitzHamo
(1) Robert de Bellême de Montgomery (c1052)
(1) Hugh de Montgomery (c1054)
(1) Roger "the Poitevin" de Montgomery (c1058)
(1) Philip "Grammaticus" de Montgomery (c1062)
(1) Arnulph "Cimbricus" de Montgomery (c1060)
(1) Emma de Montgomery, abbess of Almenesches
(1) Matilda de Montgomery, who married Robert of Mortain
(1) Mabel de Montgomery, who married Hugh de Chateuaneuf en Thimerais
(1) Everard de Montgomery, a son by Adeliza, royal chaplain of Henry I

(-1) Oliver Talvas (c1015)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (940-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027) (-2) Guillaume II Talvas (995-1048)

Or Olivier. Of Merula [Mesle-sur-Sarthe, Orne], which is 20 kilometers southeast of Seez. The son of William's second wife. Oliver was suspected of murdering his brother, Arnulf. He became a monk of Bec in his old age [to atone?]. His children were Robert Oison, Guillaume Oison, Raoul, and Hugh [Hugues].

(-2) Guerin de Bellême (989-?)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (940-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027)

de Bellême-Alencon. Also as Guarin, Garin, Warin, Warine or Warrin. Some sources claim he was Guillaume I's eldest son. He was called a bastard in the "Voorouders in de Middeleeuwen" by Leo Lindemans. He supposedly received the title of Comte de Perche [Mortagne-au-Perche or Perche-Gouet] and Seigneur Montagne from his father, who had conquered the region. Seigneur of the castle of Domfront. Lord of Mortaign [sic] and Nogent. Note that Mortagne had been created as a march against Normandy and its lords had traditionaly been vassals of the Count of Blois.

Guerin married Melisande [Millicent], the daughter of Hugh I, Viscount de Chateaudun. Chateaudun is a small village 45 km south of Chartres, on the Loire river, capital of the Dunois and home to a magnificent 15th century castle. I have to point out that this was just south of the village of Meslay-le-Grenet. This is the region where I have guessed our family originated. Nogent-le-Rotrou and Montagne-au-Perche are just to the west of Meslay-le-Grenet. The Comte du Perche was created in 1115 when the Comte of Mortagne was combined with the seigneuries of Nogent-le-Rotrou and Bellême. Before the French Revolution, it was part of the Province of Normandie. The Percheron, a large warhorse, is from this region.

He married Hildegarde de Blois before 1026.

Guerin's children were Adelis, an illegitimate son, Raoul, and, perhaps, Guerinet. The descent of this part of the family is confused and I think the reason is that the Bellême/Talvas and Chateaudun families intermarried at least twice. The following is what I think happened:

Guerin married Melisande, the daughter of Hugh, Vicomte de Chateaudun, the son of Geoffrey I.
Hugh was succeeded by his brother, Geoffrey II, who had a son, Geoffrey III, who succeeded him as Vicomte.
Geoffrey III's son and heir was Rotrou, who married his cousin, Adelis, the daughter of Guerin de Bellême.
However, Orderic de Vitalis claimed that Rotrou, the Count of Chateaudun, was a descendant of the Talvas family of Belleme via Guerin, Seigneur de Domfront.

Guerin "murdered a harmless and unsuspecting friend, and was for this crime, so the men of his age said, openly seized and strangled by the fiend [the devil]." - from "The History of the Norman Conquest of England: Its Causes and Its Results" by Edward Augustus Freeman. Orderic Vitalis says that he died before his father, in 1027.

(-1) Adelis de Bellême (c1020)
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (940-997) (-3) Guillaume de Beleme (963-1027) (-2) Guerin de Bellême (989-1026)

Or Adeline. She married Rotrou II, who became Viscount Chateaudun, Seigneur de Nogent and Count de Mortagne [Mortagne-au-Perche] after the death of his elder brother, Hugh. Rotrou was the son of Geoffrey III and Helvice of Mortagne. This may have been a second marriage because Rotrou also married Mahaud, the daughter of Thibaud IV, Count of Blois.

A Cadet Branch of the Talvas Family?

(-1) Guerinet
(-6) Yves de Creil (885-983) (-5) Fulk de Corbonais (915-?) (-4) Yves de Bellême (940-997) (-3) Guillaume Talvas I (963-1027) (-2) Guerin de Bellême (989-1026)

In this interpretation, Guerinet [Guernet/Gernet] means son of Guerin [litte Guerin]. The assumption here is that the Gernets, sub-enfeoffed of the de Montgomery's as they were in the next generation [see Roger de Poitou and Ralph/Vivian Gernet, below], must have had some blood or marrige connection with that family. That's hardly proof of this link, but if he were a son of a man named Guerin and was part of the de Montgomery clan, then this is where he might fit. This would make our Guerinet a cousin of Mabel Talvas, the mother of Roger of Poitou, of whom the Gernet's were vassals. Note also the proximity of Meslay-le-Grenet to Chateaudun, Bellême, and Mortagne-au-Perche.

Why did Adelis get the bulk of the inheritance if Guerinet was Guerin's son? I suppose it could be because he was a bastard. That might also explain the use of the diminutive.

Perchensis Comitatus la Perche Comte
Chartres is in the far right hand of the map. Southwest is Melle-le-Grenet [Mesle, Meslay]. Further south is Chateaudun. Due west of Chartres is Nogent-le-Rotrou. North of that is Bellême and Mortagne.

(2) Gaufridus Grenet of Chartres (c1070)

Or Gaufrid. Apparently a monk of the abbey of St Peter at Chartres.

1101-1129 -- Grenet (Gaufrid), familier de Saint-Pere (Titres de Saint-Pere)
- from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois
A familier was a person attached to the household of a high official or bishop who rendered service in return for support; Saint-Père [Saint-Pierre] is the great cathedral of Notre-Dame de Chartres. The church still exists and the monastery has become one of the city’s lycées (high schools).
1101-1129. "Quomodo majoratus terre de Bosco Rufini Gaufrido de Arro concessus sit.
Quia humane memorie natura ea esse cognoscitur, ut omnia que potest capere non semper possit retinere, ego Willelmus, sancti Petri Carnoti abbas [I, William, abbot of St. Peter of Chartres], litterarum harum noticie mando [letter giving notice], quia, capituli nostri assensu [our chapter approval], Gaufrido de Arro majoratum terre de Bosco Rufini, quam nobis domnus Urso in elemosinam dederat, concessi, eumque, secundum pacta que subscipta sunt, de eodem majoratu in capitulo nostro investivi; . . . Ex parte monachorum [monks]: Gaufridus famulus, Johannes major, Robertus major, Ernaldus Bereum, Odo Leodegarii, Garinus, Gislebertus Laurentii, Durandus, Gaufridus Grenet, Matheolus, Chotardus."
- from the "Cartulaire de l'abbaye de Saint-Père de Chartres," publié par m. Guérard by Chartres (France).

(2) Matheus Grenet of Chartres (c1070)

Or Mathias or Mathieu. Apparently a monk of the abbey of St Peter at Chartres.

1101-1129 -- Grenet (Mathieu) id.
- from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois
Undated, but perhaps 1101-1129. "Quod Johannes, dismissa calumpnia terre de Faverolis, noster de eadem terra serviens factus sit.
. . . Testes [witnesses]: Ernaldus botarius, Petrus sartor, Gislebertus, Matheus Grenet, Robertus, Garinus Regulus, Ernulfus Boslu, Gislebertus, et plures alii."
- from the "Cartulaire de l'abbaye de Saint-Père de Chartres," publié par m. Guérard by Chartres (France).

(2) Eustace Grenet of Jerusalem (c1075)
(-1) Guerinet (c1020) ?? (1) Willelmus Grenet of Fécamp (c1050) ??

Also as Grenier/Granier. Note that both surnames refer to a grain warehouse or warehouseman. Of Flanders [?]. Eustace Grenet [Eustachium Grenet] was a knight and crusader lord serving Baldwin II, the King of Jerusalem. Note that Nicholas Grenet, of Chartres, was also a crusader.

Eustace may have been from Beaurain-Chateau, in Therouanne, in the county of Flanders, in Northern France. He probably accompanied Hugh II of St. Pol on the First Crusade, in the retinue of Godfrey of Bouillon. Alternately his lands were in the county of St. Pol, in Artois, a vassal of Boulogne. - from "Families, Friends and Allies: Boulogne and politics in northern France and England, c. 879-1160" by Heather J. Tanner.

He participated in the Battle of Ramlah in 1105, and in 1109 he assisted in the siege of Tripoli. In 1110 he was granted the city of Sidon, after it was captured by Baldwin I with the help of Sigurd I of Norway. He was already lord of Caesarea, which had been captured in 1101 and given to him at an unknown date. Soon after this he married Emelota or Emma, the niece of Patriarch Arnulf of Chocques. At the siege of Tyre he supervised the construction of the siege engines.

Baldwin II of Jerusalem was captured by the Turks in 1123.

"when the princes of Jerusalem heard the unfortunate news of the king's capture, they appointed to be governor of the kingdom one Eustace Grenet, a prudent and discreet man, to manage matters whilst the king should be absent. Meanwhile, prince Balac besieged Joppa with sixteen thousand armed men; at the news of which, the patriarch of Jerusalem, with Eustace the governor, and other princes, the mercy of God accompanying them, marched thither with seven thousand men, routed the enemy, after they had slain seven thousand of them, and took an immense quantity of spoil, which they divided equally among them." - from "Flowers of History ...: The History of England from the Descent of the Saxons to A.D. 1235."
Eustace was also the Constable of Jaffa.
". . . in May 1123 an [Eqyptian] army and a fleet laid siege to Jaffa, but the constable Eustace Grenier gave battle before Ibelin and routed them decisively." - from "The Crusades, C. 1071-C. 1291" by Jean Richard.
In other sources Eustace was referred to as "de Grenier" [lord of the granary] and as the viceroy of the king. Also as Garnier, Granarius, Grenarius, or even Agrain. The kingdom of Jerusalem contained four principal baronies, the county of Joppa and Ascalan, the principalities of Galilee and Hebron, and the lordship of Sidon and Caesarea.

Eustace died on 15 June 1123 and was succeeded as viceroy by William of Buris. He was buried in Jerusalem at the abbey of St. Maria Latina.

"The lords of Sidon and Caesarea descended from Eustace Grenier, the Constable, d. 1123. Reginald lord of Sidon . . . was his grandson, the son of Gerard. Caesarea was held as a fief of Sidon by a branch of the same family . . . There are some verses in Martene and Durand . . . which claim that . . . Eustace Grenier [and others were] . . . natives of the diocese of Therouanne." - from "Memorials of the Reign of Richard I" from "Historical Introductions to the Rolls Series" by William Stubbs and Arthur Hassall."
The lords of Sidon were,
Eustace Grenier (1110–1123)
Eustace II Grenier (1123-1164)
Gerard Grenier (1164-1171)
Renaud Grenier (1171-1187)
Conquered by Saladin, 1187-1197
Renaud Grenier (restored, 1197-1202)
Balian Grenier (1202-1239)
Julian Grenier (1239-1260), who sold it to the Knights Templar
The lords of Caesarea, the junior branch of the family noted above, were,
Eustace Grenier (1110–1123)
Walter I Grenier (1123–1154), Eustace II's twin brother
Hugh Grenier (1154–1169)
Amalric (c. 1170s)
Walter II Grenier (c. 1180s–1187)
Juliana Grenier (1187–1219)
Walter III Grenier (1219–1229)
John Grenier (1229–1239)
Margaret Grenier (1239–1264), who married John d'Aleman

(8) Etienne Grenet of Leveville (c1270)


1312-1316 -- Grenet (Etienne), maire de Leveville et de Bennes (Titres du Chapitre.)
- from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois
"En 1313, le samedi apres l"Invention de la Croix, on fixe a 40 livres Chartrains la pension annuelle de'Etienne, dit Grenet, maire de Leville." - from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugene de Buchere de Lepinois
Mayor of Leveville, a village north of Chartres, and Bennes [Bene, Bena], a village between Olle and Chauffours, southwest of Chartres.

(10) Jean Grenet (c1335)

Probably a priest, since he worked at the library at the University of Paris as an illuminator.

"Documents Tires Du Recueil des Privileges de l'Universite
de Paris et des Actes Concernans le Pouvoir et la
Direction de l'Universite de Paris sur les Libraires, etc.

Lettres Patentes de Charles V
Portant Exemption du Guet et de la Garde Des Portes

Paris, 5 novembre 1368 . . .

Charles, par la grace de Dieu Roy de France, au Prevost de Paris ou a son Lieutenant, salut.

Ouye la supplication qui nous a este faite de par nostre treschere Fille l'Universite de Paris, pour ses Serviteurs, Libraires, Escrivains, Relieurs de Livres et Parcheminiers, . . .

. . . Jean Grenet . . . Enlumineurs"
[illuminators] - from "Étude sur le libraire parisien du XIIIe au XVe siècle: d'après les documents publiés dans le..." by Paul Delalain.

Charles V

Charles Valois was the King of France from 1364 to 1380. This was during the Hundred Years War and his reign marked a period of French resurgence. Charles directed his generals to follow a Fabian policy, avoiding direct confrontation with the English longbowmen who had so devastated French chivalry.

University of Paris

The universtiy grew up around the catherdral of Notre Dame, in Paris, during the latter part of the 12th century. It had four faculties, Arts, Medicine, Law and Theology. The College de Sorbonne was a theological school, founded in 1257.


A craftsman who adds illustrations and decorations to illuminated manuscripts.

(11) Jean Grenet of Saint-Jean d'Angély (c1365)

A Cistercian monk.

"1405, 8 novembre. -- Transaction entre l'abbaye [de la Grace-Dieu] . . . FF. Andre, abbe, Jean Guillon, prieur, Guilloteau, sous-prieur, Jean Martin, maitre de la maison de Dardais, Jean Grenet, maitre de La Grange du Bois, Jean Leticeau celerier, maitre de la maison de La Brie, . . ." - from "Archives historiques de la Saintonge et de l'Aunis: cartulaire de Saint-Jean d'Angély"
Saint-Jean d'Angély is near La Rochelle in Poitou. There is a La Grange du Bois 17 miles west of Chartres, in the ville of Pontguoin, in the Perche.

(11) Nicholas Grenet of Chartres (c1350)

Nicholas is the first member of this family I've identified who could be a progenitor, that is, he wasn't a priest and didn't disappear into the crusades. I have "forced" the following descent, assuming that all of the Grenet's of Chartres are related, if not as father and son, at least as uncle and nephew.

1389 -- Grenet (N.), licencié es-lois [degree of law]
- from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois
He was a lawyer, perhaps a graduate of the nearby university of Paris.

(12) Jean Grenet (c1380)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350)

Of Chartres. A lawyer. I'm not sure he's the son of Nicholas, but the career fits.

"1416. Jean Grenet, licencié en lois, procureur du Chapitre." - from "Les écoles de Chartres au Moyen-âge: (du Ve au XVIe siècle) ..." by Alexandre Clerval, Jules Alexandre Clerval
Lieutenant General of the county.
". . . en 1423, Jean Grenet était lieutenant général du pays chartrain;" - from "Mémoires By Société archéologique et historique de l'Orléanais"
This was the period of the 100 Years War when Henry V reigned as King of both England and France. The Chartrain was under Anglo-Burgundian control.
"Toute l'administration etait en ce moment anglo-bourguignonnne; plusieurs gentilshommes considerables de la province, renfermes dans les murs, entre Jean des Mazis et . . . les sieurs Jean Grenet, Jean-le-Houic et Gilles de Laubespine, principaux representants de la bourgeoisie de robe . . ."
Hue de Prez was the Bailiff of Chartres from about 1423 and worked with the English invaders.
"Hue de Prez, ecuyer, vaillant homme d'armes, frere de l'ancien bailli Etienne de Prez . . . il choisit pour lieutenant general, Me jean Grenet, licencie es-lois."
"Me Jean Grenet, ancien lieutenant-general du bailli anglais Hue de Prez, faisait encore partie de l'echevinage en 1437" - from ""Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois.
"Le vendredi, 30 juin 1424, accord par devant Jean Grenet, licencie es loix, lieutenant general de N. H. Guy Desprez, excuyer, billy de Chartres . . . " - from "Cartulaire de l'abbaye de Notre-Dame de l'Eau"
14 March 1438. ". . . et Mes Jean Grenet et Jean Perier, echevins [aldermen], recurent la mission de reviser les lists des bourgeois aptes au service militaire."
Jean was Bailiff and Counselor to Notre Dame de Chartres. Bailiff appears to have been analogous to the position of Sheriff in England, that is, a tile of honor with real duties, but bestowed in turn on the notable men of the region.
10 November 1450. "L'affaire de la navigation de la riviere, fertile incidents, occupait toujours les esprits . . . Jean Grenet, licencié es-lois, bailli et conseiller de l'Aumone Notre-Dame . . . - from ""Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois.

(12) Claude Grenet (c1380)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350)

Conseiller au bailliage, advisor to the baillif. Possibly a brother of Jean Grenet and son to Nicholas; again, the career fits. Note that his grandson, Michel, occupied Jean Grenet's place in 1462.

(13) Unknown Grenet (c1400)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380)

(14) Michel Grenet (c1430)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400)

Licencie es-lois. Lord of the manor of Bois-des-Fourches. He held the the tile of Lieutenant Général du pays Chartrain, the position of [his uncle?] Jean Grenet.

"GRENET (Michel). - La famille Grenet est une des plus anciennes de la ville de Chartres : un de ses membres prit part à la première croisade ; en 1423, Jean Grenet était lieutenant général du pays chartrain; en 1462, cette place était occupée par Michel Grenet, sieur du Bois-des-Fourches. Le petit-fils de celui-ci, Claude Grenet, conseiller au bailliage, fut le pere de Michel Grenet, dont nous nous occupons en ce moment. Michel naquit a Chartres vers 1560; il se consacra aux lettres et fut professequ au college de Navarre, a Paris." - from "Mémoires By Société archéologique et historique de l'Orléanais"

[Translation:] “The Grenet family is one of the oldest in Chartres : one of its members took part in the first crusade; in 1423, Jean Grenet was lieutenant general of the Chartres region; in 1462, this place was occupied by Michel Grenet, a gentleman of Bois-des-Fourches. The grandson of that one, Claude Grenet, counsellor of the Bailiwick, was the father of Michel Grenet, who is the subject of the present article. Michel [the great-grandson of the lieutenanat general Michel Grenet] was born around 1560 in Chartres; he devoted himself to literature and was professor at the College of Navarre, in Paris.”

Le Bois-des-Fourches

In the payen de Hanches. The name means forest of the fork, either as "fork in the road" or pitchfork.

"BOIS-DES-FOURCHES (LE), h. c. de Hanches. -- Le Boys-des-Fourches, 1547 (ch. de la fabr. de Pre-Saint-Evroult. -- Le fief du Bois-des-Fourches etait vassal de Gallardon." - from "Dictionnaire topographique du département d'Eure-et-Loir" by Lucien Merlet
This was a very small hamlet north of Chartres. There were military movements in the area during the Franco-Prussian war.

"Vers le commencement de 1462, le sire Jean de Rochechouart, seigneur d'Ivry et de Saint-Georges-d'Esperance . . . Ce seigneur choisit pour lieutenant-general Me Michel Grent, licencie es-lois. Les Grenet, Les Montescot et avant eux les Laubespine, representants de la haute bourgeoisie de robe . . ."

[Translation:] "Towards the beginning of 1462, the Sire Jean de Rochechouart , Lord of Ivry and Saint-Georges-d'Espérance . . . this nobleman chooses to Michel Grent [sic] to be Lieutenant General, dismisses [the others?]. Grenet, Montescot, and before them Laubespine, represented the high bourgeoisie class."
"Le lieutenant-general Michel Grenet, commisaire en cette partie, avait publie a Nogent-le-roi, comme dans les autres paroisses traversees par la riviere, l'ordonnance royale du 2 aout 1462 abolissant les peages." - from ""Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois."

[Translation:] "Lieutenant-General Michel Grenet, commissary in this section was published in Nogent-le-Rotou, as in other parishes traversees by the river, the Royal Order of 2 August 1462 abolishing tolls." [?!]

(15) Unknown Grenet (c1460)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400) (14) Michel Grenet (c1430)

I think we need a generation here.

Pierre Grenet (c1460)

I have "1493. Pierre Grenet, licencie en lois, chanoine" - from "Les écoles de Chartres au Moyen-âge: (du Ve au XVIe siècle) ..." by Alexandre Clerval, Jules Alexandre Clerval

(16) Claude Grenet (c1490)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400) (14) Michel Grenet (c1430) (15) Unknown Grenet (c1460)

Echevin, alderman, of Chartres in 1526.

(17) Claude Grenet (c1535)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400) (14) Michel Grenet (c1430) (15) Unknown Grenet (c1460) (16) Claude Grenet (c1490)

Lord of Bois-des-Fourches and, as such, I assume he was a lineal descendent of Michel Grenet, who was himself sieur du Bois-des-Fourches. "Conseiller au presidial". Receiver "des aides" [of the relief?] for Chartres. On 15 January 1554 Claude married Marie, the daugther of Gilles Acarie, Lord d'Estauville and Bailiff of Chartres from 1523 to 1539. Note that Claude Acarie and Jean Grenet were "avocats du Roi et du duc de Ferrare au bailliage," [lawyers of the King and the Duke de Ferrare in the bailiwick].

". . . le 24 août 1568, le texte que Jean Grenet, jurisconsulte et conseiller au siege [garbled], avait compose pour une inscription lapidaire commemorant le siege de Chartres par les protestants, au mois de mars de cette meme annee." - from "Le Logis Clause Huve" by Jean Villette. Also referenced as "Cette epitaphe, comme on disait alors, due a M. Grenet, conseiller au Presidial, et gravee par ordre de la Chambre en date du 24 aout 1568, subsiste encore aujourd 'hui; la voici dans son entier." - from "Historie de Chartres" by Eugene de Buchere de Lepinois

"126. Grenet (Pl. II, 4e rangee). - La musee de la Societe possede, sous le no 320, un tableau peint a l'huile representant le siege de Chartres par le prince de Conde, en 1568, qui lui a ete donne par M. des Haulles. L'auteur de cette peinture est inconnu; mais, en 1755, une copie en fut executee par Jean Gruge (conserve actuellement dans la salle de la bibliotheque municipale) (M.S. A., IV, p. 33; P.V., IX. p. 408).

A. -- Au bas se trouvent les armes suivantes: de'argent a une tierce en bande, accompagnee de quatre taux (ou croix de St-Antoine), 2 et 2, le tout d'azur (Mx. 1704, p.3 et 18. D'Hozier, Arm. general).

A quel membre de la famille faut-il attribuer ces armoires, indice, soit de la propriete du tableau, soit de la commande dudit tableau? Comme rien ne permet une attribution exacte, nous nous contenterons de donner un apercu de la famille, de 1550 a 1660, en nous aidant des archives communales et du ms. 1172 de la Bibliotheque municipale.

Claude Grenet, sieur du Bois-des-Fourches, receveur des aides a Chartres, epousa, le 15 janvier 1554 (E., 3, 3), a St-Martin-le-Viandier, Marie Acarie, fille de Gilles, seigneur d'Estauville, et d'Anne Arroust, et fut enterre le 13 mai 1569 a St-Aignan (E., 6, 1). De ce mariage, deux enfants:
1 Jeanne, femme de Jean de Collard, seigneur de la Foucaudiere;
2 Rene, . . . "

- from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir"

The Siege of Chartres 1568

During the Second Huguenot War, in 1568, the Protestants, under the command of Louis de Bourbon, the 1st Prince of Conde, lay siege to the Catholic city of Chartres. Subsequently he signed a peace treaty with Catherine de Medici, the queen-mother and real power behind the throne, however the war started up again in 1569.

During this period France was in a real decline, beset by revolution as the sons of Catherine de Medici all failed to produce an heir. Eventually Henry Bourbon became King, styled Henry IV. He renounced his Protestant faith saying, "The throne is worth a Mass." His heirs would persecute the Hugeenot's until most fled the country.

(18) Rene Grenet (c1555)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400) (14) Michel Grenet (c1430) (15) Unknown Grenet (c1460) (16) Claude Grenet (c1490) (17) Claude Grenet (c1535)

The son of Claude, Lord of Bois-des-Fourches. The Receiver of the Tithes [Ten Percent Taxes], received by the King on the income of the clergy. It was originally instituted to fund crusades against the Turks and, in this case, funded the wars against the Huguenots. Rene married Claude Cheron.

"Rene, receveur des decimes, qui, de son mariage avec Claude Cheron, eut trois fils et deux filles:
a) Rene, greffier du grenier a sel, a Chartres, qui suit;
b) Louis, chanoine
[Canon] de Notre-Dame de Chartres;
c) Michel, aussi chanoine
[also a Canon] de Chartres;
d) Catherine, femme de Robert, avocat a Brou;
e) Louise, femme: 1er de Bequignon, 2er de Pigeon.

- from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir"

(19) Rene Grenet (1594)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400) (14) Michel Grenet (c1430) (15) Unknown Grenet (c1460) (16) Claude Grenet (c1490) (17) Claude Grenet (c1535) (18) Rene Grenet (c1555)

Lord of Montmureau, which is about 50 km northwest of Chartres. Registrar of the salt warehouse, where the salt tax was assessed.

"Rene Grenet, sieur de Montmireau, greffier au grenier a sel de Chartres, fils de Rene de Claude Cheron, ne en 1594, mort en 1650, epouse, avant 1624. Marie Le Tonnelier (E., 3, 8), et en a deux fils et deux filles; . . .
1 Michel
2 Florent
3 Francoise, femme, le 18 mai 1643, de Jacques Lebrun, sieur de St.-Andre, commissaire ordinaire de l'artillerie de France (E., 3, 11, St-Martin-le-Viandier);
4 Catherine, baptisee le 1er decembre 1628 a Barjouville (GG, I), femme de Denis, elu."
- from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir"

(20) Michel Grenet (c1630)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400) (14) Michel Grenet (c1430) (15) Unknown Grenet (c1460) (16) Claude Grenet (c1490) (17) Claude Grenet (c1535) (18) Rene Grenet (c1555) (19) Rene Grenet (1594)

Lord of Montmureau. He married Catherine, the daughter of Noel Thibault, counselor of the King and President of the salt warehouse of Janville.

"1 Michel, sieur de Montmireau, qui epouse, en l'eglise St-Saturnin, le 12 fevrier 1652 (E., 2, 16), Catherine Thibault, fille de noble homme maitre Noel Thibault, conseiller du roi, president au grenier a sel de Janville, et de Marie de Pardieu, et en a une fille,
Marie, baptisee le 3 avril 1656 a St.-Saturnin (E., 2, 11);"
- from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir"
He apparently had no sons, and this line ends here.

(20) Florent Grenet (c1630)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400) (14) Michel Grenet (c1430) (15) Unknown Grenet (c1460) (16) Claude Grenet (c1490) (17) Claude Grenet (c1535) (18) Rene Grenet (c1555) (19) Rene Grenet (1594)

The Receiver of Tithes [or taxes?]. He married Catherine Chevalier and, secondly, Marie Pastour.

"2 Florent, receveur des decimes, epoux de Catherine Chevalier et, en secondes noces, de Marie Pastour; dont une fille,
Angelique, baptisee le 20 septembre 1673 a St.-Martin-le-Viandier (E., 3, 19);"
- from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir"
He apparently had no sons, and this line ends here.

Grenet, Seigneur des Chaises et du Coudray, Pay du Chartrain

(17) Jean Grenet (c1555)
(11) Nicholas Grenet (c1350) (12) Claude Grenet (c1380) (13) Unknown Grenet (c1400) (14) Michel Grenet (c1430) (15) Unknown Grenet (c1460) (16) Claude Grenet (c1490) ??

Seigneur des Chaises, Lord of Chaises. "Procurers du Roi" . . . Jean Grenet, in 1598" - from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois. He married Marie Charpentier. Claude Acarie and Jean Grenet were "avocats du Roi et du duc de Ferrare au bailliage," [lawyers of the King and the Duke de Ferrare in the bailiwick].

I believe Jean was the brother or cousin of Claude Grenet, Lord of Bois-des-Fourches, "conseiller au presidial", and Receiver "des aides" for Chartres. Note that Claude married Marie, the daugther of Gilles Acarie, Lord d'Estauville and Bailiff of Chartres.

At the end of the 16th century a Jean Grenet, sometimes referred to as "le sieur," was amongst the prominent middle-class of the town of Chartres - from The Motto of Chartres. "[C]onseiller et procureur du Roi" and "licencié es-lois."

Just south of Chartres, in the pays Dunois, is a village known as Meslay-le-Grenet, which was apparently owned by Jean Grenet.

"Meslay-le-Grenet EL v. 1100 Maislaicum, 1626 Melleyum Greneti (rapelle Jean Grenet, seigneur du lieu en 1560)." - from "Bulletin de la Commission Royale de Toponymie & Dialectologie"


This small hamlet of only a few dwellings is located just south of Chartres, near the Eure river. It is still very rural. It is most famous for its Romanesque church, the Église St-Blaise et St-Orien, and the remarkable 15th century fresco's it contains of the danse macabre, inspired by the bubonic plague's devastation of the region. There is a mass grave there for the plague victims. The fate of Meslay-le-Grenet probably followed that of Chartres, suffering repeated Viking pillages from 858 to 911.

Today the village is located in the Eure-et-Loire departement, named for the Eure and Loire rivers. It is part of the Centre (Val de Loire) region.

The Meslay Connection

There are a number of villages named Meslay in France. There is a Meslay near Falaise in Normandy, Meslay-du-Maine and Pays-de-Meslay-Grez in Maine, Parcay de Meslay in the Loire valley, Mesle-sur-Sarthe, on the Sarthe river near Alencon in the old county of Montagne-Perche, and, Meslay-le-Grenet and Meslay-le-Vidame in the county of Blois, which is now the Eure-et-Loire.

I believe that the naming of these villages is similar in concept to a couple of English villages noted later in this document. Those are Yealand Conyers and Yealand Redmayne. Their names commemorated various "lords of the manor," that is, the de Yealand, de Conyers and de Redmayne families, who all, at one time or another, owned those villages. Similarly, I believe that some overlord named de Meslay owned a number of estates across Blois, Normandy and Maine. Some of the villages on these estates took his name. Some of these were, in turn, re-enfeoffed or sold to other men and gained an added naming. Note that Vidame, in Meslay-le-Vidame, refers to a class of temporal officers who originally represented the bishops, but later erected their offices into fiefs and became feudal nobles. That is, the village was "Meslay, that is owned by the Vidame," as opposed to "Meslay, that is owned by [enfeoffed to] Grenet." Note also that the latter village's name could be interpreted as "Meslay, that is owned by the Grenetier," see above.

And, what do you know, the title of Vidamé de Chartres was hereditary to the Seigneurs of Meslay, who were also Lords of Fréteval. Girard was the Vidame of Chartres at the beginning of the 10th century and was related to the Counts of Blois according to the cartulary of Chartres.

The Grange de Meslay, in Tours, a giant tithe barn that is the last remnant of the abbey of Marmoutier, built circa 1220, was probably named for the Vidame. They also held lands in Normandy. At left are the arms of le Vidames de Chartres. Were the Meslay's by any chance also the grenetier du Chartres?

According to the website of the village of Meslay in Calvados, in about the 11th century, the ownership of the village passed to a family that took the village's name as their own. As early as 1070 Roger de Merlaio, the name was sometimes spelled as Merlay, signed his name as witness to a grant to the abbey de Fontenay. In about 1096, Marin de Merlaio gave two churches to the abbey of St Martin of Sées.

"La seigneurie de Meslay passe ensuite entre les mains d’une autre famille qui en prit le nom. Vers 1070, une autre charte dressée au temps de Raoul Teson III, un des seigneurs du Cinglais, mentionne également Meslay comme faisant partie de bien accordé par donation par son père et son aïeul à l’abbaye de Fontenay. Elle est signée par Roger de Merlaio. Plus tard vers 1096, Marin de Merlaio donne deux églises à l’abbaye de St Martin de Sées."
The Meslay's were also apparently in William's retinue during the time of the Conquest,
". . . Other men of earl Hugh have given their tithes to Saint-Evroult: . . . and Roger de Meslay, Brisard and Robert Pultrel gave their tithes in Leicestershire." - from the "Regesta Regum Anglo-Normannorum: The ACTA of William I 1066-1087."
Soon after the Conquest the barony of Morpeth, in Northumberland, was granted to Sir William de Merlay. William Rufus confiscated it when the Merlay's joined the Mowbray rebellion of 1095, but it was later returned. So the Meslay family were also followers of the pro-Duke Robert party, as were the Montgomery's and the Gernets.

(18) Claude Grenet (1586)
(17) Jean Grenet (c1555)

The son of Jean. A priest. Canon and archdeacon of the Cathedral of Chartres. He was buried on 20 February 1628 at the age of 42.

"On a cru d'abord qu'elle etait celle d'un Grenet. Nous n'avons trouve gue: 1st Claude Grenet, pretre, chanoine et archidiacre de Pincerais [et Lenoir] en l'eglise Notre-Dame de Chartres, fils de Jean, seigneur des Chaises, et de Marie Charpentier, inhume le 20 fevrier 1628, age de 42 ans, dans l'eglise de St Saturnin (Arch. Com. E., 2,20); " - from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir: 1906. 14-27 mai, 31 mai et 2, 3...
". . . vicaires-generaux deputes par le Chapitre, le siege vacant, de se soumettre a l'obedience et juridiction des eveques de Chartres". A possible son,
"(1) Claude Grenet, ne en 1605, recu docteur en theologie de la maison et societe de Sorbonne le 6 aout 1642, nomme a la meme epoque cure de Saint-Benoit, resigna son benefice a son vicaire en 1680. L'archeveque de Paris, trompe sur ses sentiments, le nomma en 1668 superieur de Port-Royal des Champs. Grenet mourut le 15 mai 1684." - from "Mémoires ...! 1644-1669," by René Rapin.

"Jean Grenet approuve depuis par Marc Bimbi, En quoi Thomas Merlin, ne fut jamais contraire." - from "Paris, ou Description de cette ville " by Michel de Marolles

(18) Michel Grenet (c1585)
(17) Jean Grenet (c1555) ???

"Procurers du Roi" of the family included Jean Grenet, in 1598, Michel Grenet, in 1628, and Anne Grenet, in 1650 [Michel's widow?] - from "Histoire de Chartres" by Eugène de Buchère de Lépinois. A lawyer.

"Ce seigneur choisit pour lieutenant-general M Michel Grenet, licencié es-lois. Les Grenet,les Montescot et avant eux les Laubespine, representants de la haute bourgeoisie de robe, souvent opposes d'opinion en politique, se disputaient l'office de lieutenant-general qui, reunissant a la fois l'administration de la justice et de la presidence de la chambre de ville, etait le point de mire naturel des amitions locales."
A Michel Grenet de Chartres made a French translation of a work by Jacques Le Vasseur (1571-1638), the dean of the University of Paris [Et la paraphrase en vers latins, par Michel Grenet de Chartres. Paris, par Fleury Bourriquant [a 17th century printer], 1609.].

Marie Grenet Beville was the grand-daughter of Marie Grenet, and daughter of Michel [Jean Grenet's wife was a Marie} - "Marie Beville, et au 4, Grenet (voir no 126), sa grand'mere etant Marie Grenet, fille de Michel et de N. Goussard (Ms. 1 302)." - from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir"

(19) Ferdinand Grenet (c1640)

A priest and doctoral graduate of the Sorbonne. Canon of the Cathedral of Chartres. He was buried in 1709.

2nd Ferdinand Grenet, pretre, docteur en Sorbonne, chanoine de Notre-Dame de Chartres, inhume en 1709 (Arch. de Autels-Villevillon); - from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir: 1906. 14-27 mai, 31 mai et 2, 3...

(20) Jean Grenet (c1670)

Seigneur des Chaises et du Coudray. He married Anne Gueau. "du Boulay de la Brosse."

"En 1626, Jacques Galais, escuier, sieur d'Orgeval, advocat au Parlement de Paris, etait marie a Claude Hiey ou Cheix; de cette union naquit Marie Galais qui epousa Jean Grenet, escuier, sieur du Boulay et de la Brosse, conseiller du Roy en ses conseils." - from "Mémoires de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir."

"Jean Grenet, cite plus haut, epousa Anne Guyot." - from "Mémoires de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir." Their children appear to have been,

"De ce mariage:
1o Balthazar Grenet, pretre de Chartres
2o Marie-Anne Grenet. "
- from "Mémoires de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir."

(21) Balthazar Grenet (1702)
(20) Jean Grenet (c1670)

Pretre de Chartres, priest.

3rd Balthazar Grenet, pretre, fils de Jean, seigneur des Chaises et du Coudray et d'Anne Gueau, inhume le 22 janvier 1786, age de 84 ans, dans l'eglise de St Andre (Arch. Com., E. 5, 56). De plus, ce ne sont point la les armes des Grenet (voir no. 126). - from "Le Cinquantenaire de la Société archéologique d'Eure-et-Loir: 1906. 14-27 mai, 31 mai et 2, 3...

(21) Marie Anne de Grenet (c1700)
(20) Jean Grenet (c1670)

"Le titre de seigneur de Coudray fut ensuite transmis aux Grenet ou de Grenet. Ainsi: [The title of lord of Coudray was then transmitted to Grenet of Grenet. As follows:]
1707-Damoiselle Marie Anne de Grenet "fille de noble homme Jean Grenet conseiller au siege presidial de Chartres, garde des sceaux et seigneur du Coudray" est marraine.
["daughter of that noble man Jean Grenet advisor to the [president?] of Chartres, Minister of Justice, and lord of Coudray" is godmother] - from "Le Coudray et L'Histoire" by A. Binet

(21) Jean Estienne Grenet (c1700)
(20) Jean Grenet (c1670)

1722-Jean Estienne Grenet fils de Jean, conseiller du Roy a Chartres, tremoin a mariage. [son of Jean, advisor to the King at Chartres, witness to a marriage]
1743-Messire Jean-Estienne Grenet, "escuyer, seigneur des Chaises du Coudray, conseiller du Roy, garde des sceaux au bailliage et siege presidial de Chartres, decede la veille dans sa maison de Chartres, est inhume selon la forme et avec solennite requise et les ceremonies ordinaires en presence de la plus grande partie de la paroisse." . . . [lord of the . . . of Coudray, advisor to the King, Minister of Justice to the bailliage and . . . of Chartres, deceased the day before in his house at Chartres, is buried according to the ordinary form and with necessary solemnity and ceremonies, in the presence of most of the parish.] - from "Le Coudray et L'Histoire" by A. Binet

(21) Jeanne Francoise Grenet (c1700)
(20) Jean Grenet (c1670)

1725-Jeanne Francoise Grenet, fille de Jean est inhume au Coudray. [daughter of Jean is buried in Courdray] - from "Le Coudray et L'Histoire" by A. Binet
La commune du Coudray was a parish of Chartres, and is located just south of the city, on the east bank of the Eure river. Les Chaises appears to have been a manor or house in Coudray.

Jean-pierre Chartier notes,

"> Lord of Les Chaises and Le Coudray : my various documents always mention “et” between “Les Chaises” and “Le Coudray”. So does your site between chapters 16 and 17 : Grenet, Seigneur des Chaises et du Coudray, Pays du Chartrain. “Les Chaises” is the name of a village near Le Coudray. Both were “seigneuries” with adjoining lands : Les Chaises was owned by the abbot of Saint-Père. There was a “hospice” called “Le Grand Beaulieu” situated at Les Chaises. It became a “maladrerie” (for lepers) at the end of the 11th century when the disease spread. (see maps in the mail)
siège présidial : tribunal.
> In the context of a city, “Garde des sceaux” is merely “custodian of the official Seal of the Tribunal”."

Jean Grenet (c1525)

"1556, 2 mai. -- Devant Jean Grenet, ecuyer, sieur de Diemulle, aman d'Arques, Jean Cazier et Simone, sa femme, vendent a Gerard d'Hamericourt, abbe de Saint-Bertin, pour la somme de 40 flor. de 40 gr. de Fl. un manoir de 9 verges et demie gisant sur la grande rue d'Arques." - from "Les chartes de Saint-Bertin d'apres le Grand cartulaire de Charles-Joseph Dewitte" by O. Bled, Charles Joseph Dewitte, Daniel Haigneré
Saint-Bertin is perhaps Saint Benoit.

Jean-pierre Chartier says,

"> NO. Saint-Bertin was a large Benedictine abbey in the north of France, near Saint-Omer (Nord-Pas-de-Calais). Gérard d'Haméricourt est le petit-neveu d'Antoine de Berghes, famille noble originaire de Liège. Il fut d'abord abbé de l'abbaye Saint-Winnoc à Bergues en 1535, puis fut nommé 69ème abbé de Saint-Bertin en 1544, avant d'être nommé premier évêque de Saint-Omer à la suite" de la destruction de Thérouanne, siège de l’évéché, en 1553 par Charles Quint, roi d'Espagne. See : https://books.google.fr/books?id=P3OHAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA54&lpg=PA54&dq=g%C3%A9rard+d%27Ham ericourt& source=bl&ots=hdImebk6C_&sig=Z2F0WAJA6DVglQ9m70FPpoh1dhE&hl=fr&sa=X&ved=0CEYQ6 AEwCWoVChMIp4f85reSyAIVC70aCh0l_ w0n#v=onepage&q=g%C3%A9rard%20d%27Hamericourt&f=false"

Vaast de Grenet (c1550)

A later reference in the same book says that "Le successor de Gerard d'Hamericourt, Vast de Grenet . . . ", later as "D. Vaast Grenet, prieur [de ladite abbaye de Saint-Bertin]," and dated 27 April 1577. Also as Vedastus Grenet, Atrebatensis.

Jean de Grenet (c1580)


Grenet of Auvergne

(16) Jean Grenet (c1490)

(17) Gilbert Grenet (c1520)
(16) Jean Grenet (c1490)

Of Maringues en Auvergne, in south central France. Apparently he relocated to Geneva. Jean-pierre Chartier notes, "Probably because the family became Protestant and fled (beginning of the Wars of Religion), as the title of the book implies "Histoire de l'église de Genève depuis le commencement de la réformation jusqu'à nos jours."

25 April 1555. "Gilbert, fils de feu Jean Grenet, natif de Maringue en Auvergne. 8 ecus." - from "Histoire de l'église de Genève depuis le commencement de la réformation jusqu'à nos jours" by Jean Pierre Gaberel
"Gilbert Grenet, fils de Jean Grenet, de Maringues en Auvergne, fut recu B.G. le 25 avril 1555, et mourut le 30 aout 1568.
Ep.: Marie Bourgoin, dont it eut:
1. Rachel, baptisee 29 juillet 1552.
2. Ayma, baptisee 19 mars 1555, femme, 2 juin 1577, de Charles Vernet, B.G., fils de Claude Vernet, de Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne.
3. Esther, baptisee 14 juin 1556, femme, 30 decembre 1582, de Claude Barnier, H.G.
4. Abraham, qui suit; -- et d'autres enfants morts en bas age."
[a first Abraham who died at a young age] - from "Notices généalogiques sur les familles- genevoises, depuis les premiers temps, jusquà nos..." by Jacques Augustin Galiffe, Eugène Ritter, Louis Dufour-Vernes"

(18) Abraham Grenet (1557)
(16) Jean Grenet (c1490) (17) Gilbert Grenet (c1520)

"Abraham Grenet, baptise 7 novembre 1557, 23 septembre 1620; testa 21 mai 1585" - from "Notices généalogiques sur les familles- genevoises, depuis les premiers temps, jusquà nos..." by Jacques Augustin Galiffe, Eugène Ritter, Louis Dufour-Vernes"

Martine Grenet

". . . Martine Grenet, proprietaires d'une vingtaine d'hectares de bonnes terres a Chassenet et d'une trentaine d'autres dissemines dans les paroisses de Bussieres et d'Effiat, faisaient partie des familles paysannes les mieux etablies et les plus respectees du Thuretois a la veille de la . . . 1816, fut produite par le cousin Grenet, adjoint au maire de Thuret. Dans ce document il est ecrit que "Jean, Baptiste, Charles Baurot est ne le 26 mai 1774, a Chassenet, paroisse de Thuret" et que "Barcly" cure, "Ossaye" parrain, et "Grenet" marraine, ont signe." - from "Bulletin historique et scientifique de l'Auvergne"

Grenet de La Charite-sur-Loire

Philibert Grenet (c1525)

La Charite-sur-Loire is a town in the Pays de La Loire, just northwest of Nevers, on the upper Loire river.

"Philibert Grenet, ci-devant Elu pour le Roi en l'Election de Gien, recu B.G. 13 janvier 1556; frere de Me Loys Grenet, greffier des requetes de l'hotel du Roi.
Ep: Pernette Barbar, dont il eut:
1. Sp. Philibert Grenet, le jeune, ne a la Charite-sur-Loire, qui ep., 7 juin 1557 (le mariage fut celebre par Calvin; cont., Ragueau, II), Gabrielle, fille de Me Pierre Brossequin, B.G., ci-devant notaire royal, procureur et greffier du magasin a sel pour le Roi en sa ville de Bourges, et de Jeanne Roussard. -- Apres la mort de ce premier mari, Gabrielle Brossequin ep., 20 mars 1564 (cont. Ragueau, VII), No. Yves Bergevin, d'Aubigny en Berry.
2. Sp. Jean Grenet, ministre de la Parole de Dieu a Clamecy, ou il mourut en 1567 (voir une procuration du 11 aout 1567, Ragueau, IX). -- Ep. : 12 juillet 1562, Jeanne, fille d'Eustache Malan, de Dijon, B.G."

- from "Notices généalogiques sur les familles- genevoises, depuis les premiers temps, jusqu'à nos..." by Jacques Augustin Galiffe, Eugène Ritter, Louis Dufour-Vernes
Clamecy is a town about 50 km northeast of Charite-sur-Loire.

Grenet of Beauvais?

(15) Jean Grenet (c1480)

A printer.

"25 novembre 1521. -- Jean Grenet, imprimeur, passe titre nouvel pour la rente que doit au College de Dornans, ou de Beauvais, sa maison de la rue des Trois-Portes, contenant "estable, chambre et grenier au-dessus," pres la place Maubert, entre la maison du Cerf et celle de la Masse."
Similar documents through 1528. His widow, circa 1549, was Katherine Guybert. She lived through at least 1557.

Rene Grenet (???)

du Bois. "Rene Grenet, sieur du Bois, controleur desdits deniers."

Paul Bernard Grenet

The Abbe Paul Bernard Grenet, a Thomist, or adherent of the philosophy of Saint Thomas Aquinas. He wrote many books, including "Teilhard de Chardin: the man and his theories."

Jean Grenet (1939)

Jean Grenet, Maire de Bayonne, Conseiller Régional d'Aquitaine, France. Born in 1939.

The Grenet's of Canada

(19) Jean Grenet (c1610)

Of Paris. He married Jeanne de L'an [Delan].

(20) Francois Grenet (1643)
(19) Jean Grenet (c1610)

He was born in 1642/3 in St Leufroy de Paris [St. Leu-La-Foret ar. Pontoise, Paris, France]. He emigrated to Quebec and there married Marie Du Coudray on 15 September 1670 in Quebec, Canada. She had been born in 1664 in St. Sulplice de Paris - source: Tanguay_1_thru_7, L'Abbé Cyprien Tanguay, (Eusébe Senécal & Fils, Imprimeurs - Éditeurs, Montréal, Canada, 1871), Vol I, Page 282. He died on 30 May 1691 in the Hotel Dieu de Quebec, Quebec, Canada.

Their children were:
Anonymous sister b. 26 September 1671 - d. 28 September 1671
Perrine-Genevieve b. 13 September 1672 - d. 16 September 1709
Jean-Francois b. 3 January 1675 - d. unknown
Jean b. 7 May 1677 - d. unknown
Andre b. 11 May 1679 - d. unknown
Charles b. abt. 1681 - d. unknown
Anne-Andree b. 1 August 1681 - d. unknown

(21) Jean-Baptiste Grenet (1677)
(19) Jean Grenet (c1610) (20) Francois Grenet (1643)

He was born in 1677 in Quebec and died there on 2 April 1759. He married Marquerite Marie Huard dit Desilets on 8 June 1705. She was born on 22 March 1682 in Cap-St-Ignace, Quebec.

Grinet of France

Unfortunately this is also a German verb, making web searches difficult.

Grennet of France

Granet of France

Guernard, Guernault, Guerne, Guernier, Guernon, Grenard, Grenault, Grenier, and Grenon

Guernet of France

Note the Ralph Gernet was known as Radulphus Guernet in a grant by Roger de Poitou concerning the church of St. Mary in Lancaster, and Sir Roger Gernet of Halton was known as Rogeri de Guernet in a charter concerning the church of Eccleston.

(5) Richard Guernet (c1170-1200)

". . . Ils se nommaient Manasses Miete, Toustain Delamare, Lambert, Guillaume Marte, Richard Guernet, . . . "- from "Histoire du prieuré du Mont-aux-malades-lès-Rouen, et correspondance du prieur de ce monastère..." by Pierre Laurent Langlois

(8) Guillaume Guernet (1270)

"le 11 décembre 1312, Guillaume Guernet délaissa aux chapelains « ung . . . le 8 mai 1322, de 60 st de rente «sur les maisons qui furent Guernet » (Cari:" - from "La paroisse et l'église Saint-Pierre de Caen des origines au milieu de XVIe siècle" by Georges Huard

(13) Guillot de Guernet (c1400)

"Item a Guillot de Guernet, cousturier, pour raparillier les dessus dis casubles et doubler.
. . .
Item a Guillot de Guernet, cousturier, pour raparillier la dite futaine, le casuble noie et doubler et ordener la casuble rouge de la doubleure blanche, pour tout ensemble." - from "Le livre de comptes de Thomas du Marest, curé de Saint-Nicolas de Coutances (1397-1433)" by Thomas Du Marest

"Ce qui lui sourit le plus dans cette inondation , c'est la ruine de la famille de Guernet, les seuls honnêtes gens qui se soient égarés par là. ..." - from "Revue de la Normandie.Liitterature,-Sciences,-Beaux-Arts,-Histoire,Archeologie.TOME SECOND.Annee... By Revue de la Normandie.Liitterature, -Sciences, -Beaux-Arts, -Histoire, Archeologie.TOME SECOND.Annee 1863

(18) Jean Guernet (c1550)

". . . les deputes des trois Etats des vicommes, a savoir: Jehan [Jean?] Guernet, pour la vicommte de Pont-de-l'Arche;"- from "Cahiers des États de Normandie sous le règne de Henri IV.: documents relatifs à ces assemblées" by États généraux, Charles de Beaurepaire, Normandy (France). États généraux

(?) Gaston Guernet

"un troisième avec Charles Marie; le secteur de Caen, dirigé par Gaston Guernet, réunira 62 hommes; le secteur de Vire confié à"- from "Libération de la Normandie" by Marcel Baudot

The Barons of Gournay

So, can Gernet be pronounced Ger-nay in French? Jean-pierre Chartier says,

"That is precisely how it must be pronounced today. It is the normal pronunciation of French words ending in –net (carnet, bonnet, cabinet, signet, sonnet) for which, unlike in English, the “t” is not heard and the ending is pronounced as in “Beaujolais ”. Yet I could not say how it was pronounced a few centuries...or even decades ago, particularly in the country.
Gournay lies in the Haute Normandie, on the northeastern borders of the province, a part of the Pays de Bray. To the north is the Pays de Caux, on the west and south the Vexin. There is a Guornay-en-Caux just upriver from Le Havre. Gournay-en-Bray is east of Rouen.

Steve Hissem
San Diego, California