1477526. General John Hawkwood
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~1325, John born in England, 2nd s/o 2955052. Gilbert Hawkwood.
7/18/1340, John named an “executor” in his father’s will. [His older brother John was actually the heir and of majority.]
John bound as an apprentice to a merchant-tailor in London. [He would be later known in Italy as “John of the needle”.]
John studied warfare under an uncle who had served with distinction in France.
1344, John, under his older brother John with his wife Margery, held court at Gosfield.
John rose to captain in the military in command of 250 archers.
Bef. 1360, John knighted.
1360, John was “out of work” because of the peace of Bretigny. He became a mercenary, attacking Burgandy and the Pope’s territory of Avignon.
5/1361, The Pope paid the Marquis of Montferrat to employ John’s band of soldiers in his wars against Milan. John’s group received 10,000 of 60,000 francs paid on enlistment of soldiers.
1363, The Marquis ended his war with Milan. John and his band of 1000 lances took service with the Pisans. John became Commander-in-chief in the wars against Florence. He was described as “rather above the middle height, with libs strongly knit, a fresh complexion, and brown hair and eyes.” His group was called the White Company of Free Lances.
1363, John heir to his older brother John. His brother Nicholas and others held the manoral court as trustees for Sir John who was “in the wars beyond the seas.”
1363-68, John’s army involved in battles in Pisa, Sienna, Perugia, and Parma in Italy.
6/15/1368, Sir John attended Lionel, Duke of Clarence, 3rd s/o King Edward III, on his wedding at Milan. [The famous writers Froissart and Petrarch were in attendance, and both wrote about Sir John from personal knowledge.] Lionel died soon afterward, his father-in-law suspected of his poisoning. Sir John and Edward Lord Despenser joined forces in battle againt Galeazzo Visconti. A peace agreement was eventually made at the Court of Savoy.
1369-1370, Sir John fought for Bernabo Viscounti against the army of the Pope Urban.
Sir John return to visit England.
8/1/1371, Sir John named an executor in the will of Thomas de Vere, 8th Earl of Oxford.
1373, Sir John rescued Ingelram de Coucy, husband of King Edward’s daughter.
Sir John made an agreement of allegiance with the new Pope.
1377, King Edward granted Sir John and Sir John de Clifford a full pardon for all penalties incurred by an English subject in making war against the King’s allies. [Necessary for employment by the crown.]
1377, induced by a salary of 250,000 florins, Sir John agreed to support Bernabo Visconti and the Republic of Florence.
5/1377 in Milan, Italy, Sir John married 2nd Donnina, natural d/o Bernabo Visconti, sovereign of Milan. [Donnina mother of John, heir, and 3 daughters.]
5/1378, Sir John and the lord of Milan received Sir Edward de Berkekely and Geoffrey Chaucer [the poet] as ambassadors of King Richard II of England.
1378, Sir John brokered a peace between his patron and Verona.
3/3/1379, letter from Sir John Hawkwood to Louis de Gonzaga of Mantua requesting safe conduct for ‘son-in-law Sir William de Coggeshall’, who had been for some time residing in Milan.
1380, Sir John built and endowed the English Hospital at Rome for the reception and entertainment of poor English pilgrims to the tombs of the Apostles.
9/3/1380, John Haukwode found guilty of treason because he denied the king’s laws. [Eventually reversed.] (S) The Law of Treason in England, Bellamy, 2004, P94.
5/1381, Sir John appointed an ambassador to Pope Urban by King Richard II; and empowered to conclude treaties with states of northern Italy.
5/1/1385, Bernabo was disposed by his son-in-law. “the magnificent and noble Knight Sir John Hawkwood” was contracted to the son-in-law by an annual stipend of 1000 florins. The treaty was executed at Sir John’s residence at Cavezzo in Modena.
1390, Sir John joined forces with the Florentines against his former benefactor to overpower Milan. French and German forces were involved. Sir John managed to extricate himself from a trapped position and became famous as a strategist. He then successfully defended Tuscany.
1392, John and his son John made citizens of Florence, Italy; given a pension of 2000 florins a year, and exempted from all taxes. Sir John was also appointed General in Chief for life of all forces of the Republic. [Machiavelli stated that a less conservative Sir John might have made himself master of the state.]
11/8/1392 in Florence, Italy, John Haukwode Chivaler wrote a letter to Thomas Cogsale which he sent by Johan Sampson. (S) Calendar of Plea and Memoranda Rolls. [This is a very early example of a letter written in English.]
2/20/1393 in Florence, Italy, John Haukwode wrote a letter to Thomas Cogsale which he sent about his “well beloved squire” Jankyn Sampson. (S) Calendar of Plea and Memoranda Rolls.
3/17/1394, Sir John died at his villa. He was given a State funeral and was buried in the church of S. Giovanni in Florence.
Donnina received a pension of 1000 florins.
(S) Gen. Memoirs of the Extinct Family of Chester of Chicheley, Waters, 1878. (S) Hawkwood, Diabolical Englishman, Frances Saunders, 2004.
• In 1412, Sir John’s executors in England erected a cenotaph monument in the church Hedingham Sible to Sir John; and endowed a perpetual chantry in Hedingham nunnery to celebrated mass daily for Sir Hohn Hawkwood, Kt. and his military companions Thomas Oliver and John Newenton, Esqs.
• 1407, son Sir John naturalized in England and inherited his father’s estates. [No male heir.]
Children of John and ?:
i. Antiocha Hawkwood (738762), born ~1360 in Italy.