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Gervase de Blois

Gervase de Blois, a natural son of King Stephen by a lady called Dameta, was abbot of Westminster from about 1137 until he was deposed in 1157. His mother was brought from Normandy to England in 1140 and the Abbey granted her the manor of Chelsea. The monks complained that he gave away a lot of Abbey land to his own friends. During his time as abbot he assigned money from lands at White Roothing in Essex for repair of books in the monastic library. He died on 25th August 1160 and was buried in the south cloister (of the old Norman Abbey) at the foot of William de Humez. He has no effigy. There is fine seal of his in the Abbey archives.

Further reading

Original charters of Herbert and Gervase by Pierre Chaplais, Pipe Roll Society 1960

The history of Westminster Abbey by John Flete edited by J.A. Robinson, 1909

The governance of medieval England by H.G. Richardson & G. Sayles, appendix II, 1963

Abbot Gervase de Blois and the fee-farms of Westminster Abbey by Barbara Harvey, Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research, Nov 1967

Died

25th August 1160

Field

Abbot

Location

Cloisters; South Cloister

Gervase de Blois
May God grant cross

This image can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library

Image © 2018 Dean and Chapter of Westminster

Related Commemorations

The work can be tough, but even the cold and rain don’t bother me as I enjoy it so much. I love every day that I spend at the Abbey – just being here makes me smile.

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Tim - Gardener

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