Robert de Tosni1,2,3,4

M, b. circa 1036, d. August 1088
FatherRoger de Tosni b. c 988, d. b 31 May 1039
MotherAdelaide Borrell of Barcelona b. c 1003
     Robert de was born circa 1036 in Tosni, Normandy, France. He later became known as Robert de Stafford. Robert married Adelisa de Savona circa 1060 in Normandy, France. Robert's wife, Adelisa, died, leaving him a widower. Prior to William the Conqueror conquest in 1066, Robert had removed to Leichestershire. It was after this move that he took on the name de Stafford. In the late 11th century, he built Belvoir Castle as well as a Benedictine priorywichwas just over the border in Lincolnshire. He was keeper of Stafford Castle which was demolished before 1086. He held 81 manors in Staffordshire, 26 manors in Warwickshire, 20 manors in Lincolnshire & 4 manors in other counties equally 131 in all.5 Robert married 2nd Avice de Clare. Robert departed this life in August 1088 in Leicestershire, England, at Belvoir Castle. He was buried in the chapel of the Benedictine priory also refered to as Evesham Abbey.

Family 1

Adelisa de Savona b. 1042

Family 2

Avice de Clare b. c 1058


  1. [S1032] Falconer Maddan, The Gresleys of Drakelowe, Preface: page viii - A Nigel de Stafford who also appears as an extensive landowner at the time of the Domesday Survey, was in all probability the son of Robert, and was certainly the father of the first who bore the name of Gresley. The curious legend of the Devil of Drakelowe suffices the reason why the family name was Gresley rather than Drakelowe.
    Page 17 - As has been already mentioned, the estates held in England at the time of Domesday (1086) by Ralph de
    Toeni were far exceeded by the broad acres of his younger brother Robert de Stafford, who must have stood high in
    the favour of the Conqueror, although we have no record of actual services at the Conquest. In Staffordshire he
    owned 81 manors, in Warwickshire 26, in Lincolnshire 20 and 4 in other counties, 131 in all. He is not however
    recorded as holding a manor in Stafford itself, although he owned 54 manors there, but Dugdale explains this by
    the fact that Stafford Castle, of which he may very probably have been governor, was demolished before 1086, and the new one had not yet been built. The ground and surroundings of the old castle were held in 1086 by Henry
    de Ferrers. Of Robert we have certain authentic details. That his surname was de Stafford and that he was a younger brother of Ralph II de Toeni (he is actually called Robertus de Toenio by his grandson) are absolutely certain from the long charter already mentioned. He must have been born not later than about 1041, and married Avice daughter of the Earl of Clare, who probably survived him.
    Page 20 - The above may be said to represent all the facts which we at present know about the Nigel de Stafford of Domesday: what remains is more or less probable conjecture. We can only say that it is very improbable that Nigel had no connexion with Robert de Stafford, and that if he was a son of the latter, all the facts we know about him fall into their places. The rather rare name Nicholas, it may be noticed, occurs in both Nigel's and Robert's families.
  2. [S1033] Robert de Stafford, Robert de Stafford (Robert de Toeni) (c. 1036–1088) was a Norman nobleman, the builder of Stafford Castle in England. He held a large number of lordships in the Domesday Survey, a high proportion lying in Staffordshire. They included Barlaston and Bradley in Staffordshire and part of Duns Tew in Oxfordshire. He is buried in Evesham Abbey.
    He was son of Raoul II of Tosny, and so brother of Raoul III of Tosny. He married Adelisa de Savona, with whom he had a daughter Adelisa de Toeni, who married Roger Bigod, 1st Earl of Norfolk. He then married Avice de Clare, with whom he had sons Nicholas de Stafford, Nigel de Stafford, Robert II de Stafford. The Gresley family of Drakelow, baronets, were descendants of the de Tosny family through their de Stafford ancestors, including Robert.
  3. [S1035] Roger I of Tosny.
  4. [S1044] Roger de Toeni (de Conches) -
  5. [S1031] Belvoir Castle, Belvoir Castle stands dramatically, on a Leicestershire hilltop, dominating the surrounding countryside. The first castle was built by Robert de Todeni in the late 11th century. He had also built a Benedictine priory nearby, just over the border in Lincolnshire, and on his death, in 1088, he was buried in the chapel of the priory. His stone coffin was discovered there in the ruins in the 18th century and it is now in the castle chapel.