de Merlay Dynasty
The family who ruled Morpeth 1085 – 1265.
96 in stock
They came as conquerors. The 1st Baron William de Merlay obtained land to build his castle overlooking the Wansbeck at Morpeth in about 1085. He took a wife and established the dynasty. The Norman conquest of Northumberland was almost complete. William’s heirs would inherit the Barony and they would rule the people of Morpeth for ever.
One after another, his descendants enter our story: Ranulph, then Roger the 1st, Roger the 2nd, and Roger the 3rd. Equally important were their wives, those little-known young Ladies: Juliana, Alice, Ada, and Isobel. The men owed military service to the kings, the women’s role was to give birth to sons.
Morpeth has its full share of medieval history: a royal market charter, the king’s wars, childbirth at the castle, a plot to kill a hated king, the illegal killing of deer, a wicked sheriff, child marriage – it all happened here!
And ultimately? Read what happened to the de Merlay dynasty in these stories, many of which are being revealed for the first time by this acclaimed local author.