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John De Mohun
(1320-1375)

Lord Mohun of Dunster
Born: Early 1320
Died: 15th September 1375

 

This nobleman was the ninth in descent from William De Mohun, and the last possessor, of his name and lineage, of Dunster Castle in Somerset, which had fallen, amongst other spoils, to the share of his said ancestor, "an expert commander," according to Dugdale, in the Norman army at the Conquest.

John's grandfather, also John, the 1st Lord Mohun, served in several expeditions in Gascony and Scotland during the reigns of Kings Edward I and II and died in or about 1330, leaving the subject of this notice (son to his son John De Mohun, by Christian, daughter of John De Segrave) as his next heir, then in his tenth year. The custody of his lands during his minority, and also the benefit of his marriage, were granted to Henry Burghershe, Bishop of Lincoln, Lord Treasurer, at whose special instance he obtained, in 1341, though yet within age, livery of his inheritance, for which he did homage on occasion of his departure to join the army in Scotland in that year, or of his marriage with his guardian's niece, Joan, the daughter of Bartholomew, Lord Burghershe.

He attended the English expedition into Brittany, in 1342, in the retinue of Lord Burghershe, and, only a few years later, had the good fortune to be chosen, together with his brother-in-law, Sir Bartholomew Burghershe "the Son" as one of the founders of the Most Noble Order of the Garter.

We find him again employed, in 1346, in the retinue of the Prince of Wales when King Edward III landed at La Hogue; and he continued in the public service until the Siege of Calais. In 1348, he was again sent into France. By 1355, John was at Bordeaux, in the suite of the Black Prince. His name occurs frequently during that year in the household book, of which a fragment is preserved ill the office of the Duchy of Cornwall; and he is mentioned by Froissart amongst the witnesses to the King's letter, in 1370, for redressing wrongs committed by the army in Aquitaine. 

John was issued with summons to Parliament from 1342 (soon after he had come of age) until 4th October 1373. The date of his death was not discovered by Ashmole or Dugdale; but it is clear that it happened between the 14th April 1375, when robes of the Order of the Garter were directed to be issued to him, and the 4th April 1376, when Sir Thomas Holland, afterwards second earl of Kent, was in possession of his choir stall in the St. George's Chapel, Windsor.

By his wife, Joan Burghershe (who died in 1404, and by her will ordered her burial in the tomb she had made in the crypt of Canterbury Cathedral), he had three daughters, his co-heiresses: Elizabeth, wife of William Montacute, 2nd Earl of Salisbury; Philippa, wife of Prince Edward, Duke of York and Albemarle, grandson of Edward Ill; and Maud, who married John, Lord Strange of Knockyn. The two former died without surviving issue and the large possessions of the family devolved, consequently, to Richard, Lord Strange, grandson of our noble knight.

Edited from George Frederick Beltz's
"Memorials of the Most Noble Order of the Garter" (1861).

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