Fitzalan, Edmund, Earl of Arundel 1285-1326, son of Richard I Fitzalan, earl of Arundel [qv.], and his Italian wife Alisona, was born on 1 May 1285 (Cal. Genealogicum, ii. 622). In 1302 he succeeded to his father's titles and estates. On Whitsunday (22 May) 1306 he was knighted by Edward I, on the occasion of the knighting of Edward the king's son and many others, and was at the same time married to Alice, sister and ultimately heiress of John, earl Warenne (Ann. Worcester in Ann. Mon. iv. 558; Langtoft, ii. 368). He then served in the campaign against the Scots, and was still in the north when Edward I died. At Edward II's coronation he was a bearer of the royal robes (Federa, ii. 36). On 2 Dec. 1307 he was beaten at the Wallingford tournament by Gaveston, and straightway became a mortal enemy of the favourite (Malmesbury, in Stubbs's Chron. Ed. I and Ed. II, Rolls Series, ii. 156). In 1309 he joined Lancaster in refusing to attend a council at York on 18 Oct. (Hemingburgh, ii. 275), and in 1310 was appointed one of the lords ordainers (Rot. Parl. i. 443 b). In 1312 he was one of the five earls who formed a league against Gaveston (Malmesbury, p. 175), and he warmly approved of the capture of the favourite at Scarborough. Even after Gaveston's murder Arundel adhered to the confederate barons and was with Lancaster one of the last to be reconciled to the king. In 1314 he was one of the earls who refused to accompany Edward to the relief of Stirling, and thus caused the disaster of Bannockburn (ib. p. 201). In 1316 he was appointed captain-general of the country north of the Trent, and in 1318, after being one of the mediators of a fresh pacification, was made a member of the permanent council then established to watch the king. In 1319 he served against the Scots.
     The Despensers now ruled Edward, and the marriage of Arundel's eldest son to the daughter of the younger Hugh was either the cause or the result of an entire change in his political attitude. He consented indeed to their banishment in 1321, but afterwards pleaded the coercion of the magnates. When Edward's subsequent attempt to restore them began, Arundel still seemed to waver in his allegiance. Finally in October 1321 he joined Edward at the siege of Leeds Castle, and henceforth supported consistently the royal cause (ib. p. 263, propter affinitatem Hugonis Despenser, a phrase suggesting that the marriage had already been arranged). In 1322 he persuaded the Mortimers to surrender to the king at Shrewsbury (Ann. Paul. in Stubbs's Chron. Ed. I and Ed. II, i. 301), acted as one of the judges of Thomas of Lancaster at Pontefract (ib. p. 302), and received large grants from the forfeited estates of Badlesmere and the Mortimers. The great office of justice of Wales was transferred from Mortimer to him (Abbrev. Rot. Orig. i. 262), and in that capacity he received the writs directing the attendance of Welsh members to the parliament at York (Rot. Parl. i. 456). His importance in Wales had been also largely increased by his acquisitions of Kerry, Chirk, and Cydewain. In 1325 he also became warden of the Welsh marches (Parl. Writs, ii. iii. 854), and in 1326 he still was justice of Wales (Federa, ii. 641). In 1326 he and his brother-in-law Earl Warenne were the only earls who adhered to the king after the invasion of Mortimer and Isabella. He was appointed in May chief captain of the army to be raised in Wales and the west; but he does not seem to have been able to make effectual head against the enemy even in his own district. He was captured in Shropshire by John Charlton, first lord Charlton of Powys [qv.], and led to the queen at Hereford, where on 17 Nov. he was executed without more than the form of a trial, to gratify the rancorous hostility of Mortimer to a rival border chieftain (Ann. Paul. p. 321, says beheaded, but Knighton, c. 2546, says distractus et suspensus). His estates were forfeited, and the London mob plundered his treasures.
     By his wife Alice, sister of John, earl Warenne, Arundel had a fairly numerous family. His eldest son, Richard II Fitzalan [qv.], ultimately succeeded to his title and estates. He had one other son, Edmund, who seems to have embraced the ecclesiastical profession, and to have afterwards abandoned it. Of his daughters, Aleyne married Roger L'Estrange, and was still alive in 1375 (Nicolas, Testamenta Vetusta, p. 94), and Alice became the wife of John Bohun, earl of Hereford. A third daughter, Jane, is said to have been married to Lord Lisle (compare the genealogies in Eyton, Shropshire, vii. 229, and in Yeatman, House of Arundel, p. 324).

     Rymer's Federa, vol. i.
     Rolls of Parliament, vol. ii.
     Parl. Writs, vol. ii.
     Stubbs's Chronicles of Edward I and Edward II (Rolls Series)
     Knighton in Twysden, Decem Scriptores
     Walter of Hemingburgh (Engl. Hist. Soc.)
     Dugdale's Baronage, i. 316-17
     Doyle's Official Baronage, i. 70
     Tierney's Hist. of Arundel, 212-24
     Vincent's Discoverie of Errours in Brooke's Catalogue of Nobility, p. 26.

Contributor: T. F. T. [Thomas Frederick Tout]

Published: 1889