House of Balliol

From Metapedia
Jump to: navigation, search
House of Balliol
Balliol COA.png
Armorial of Balliol
Country Scotland, England
Founder Guy I de Balliol
Final ruler Edward de Balliol
Founding year 1091
Ethnicity French, Scottish, English (see details)

The House of Balliol was an Anglo-French noble and later Royal House, most noted for briefly providing two kings of Scotland.


The family had their origins in Bailleul-en-Vimeau, canton of Hallencourt, Somme, Picardy, France. They are said to have arrived in England during the 1090s following the Norman conquest of England, where they were granted lands, notably at what became their seat: Barnard Castle. They retained estates at Bailleul, and Harcourt, in France.

John de Balliol of Barnard Castle (d.1269) founded Balliol College, Oxford, and had married Devorguilla (d.1290), daughter of Alan, 5th Lord of Galloway (d.1235), and a great-great granddaughter of David I King of Scots. She founded Sweetheart Abbey in 1273 in memory of her husband, whose embalmed heart is interred there. The Foundation Charter was confirmed by King David II on 15th May, 1359.[1]

Kings of the Scots

As a result of his mother's ancestry, their son John was able to become a "Competitor" and successfully claimed the throne over other "Competitors" including Robert de Brus, following the succession crisis resulting from the unexpected death of Margaret, Maid of Norway who had been heir to Alexander III of Scotland. In 1292 John de Balliol was crowned King of Scots, in right of his descent through his mother from King David 1st. He abdicated in 1296. His son Edward (d.1363-65, s.p.), was briefly also King, Sept - Dec 1332.


  1. Anderson, Rev.John, Callendar of the Laing Charters A.D. 854 - 1837, Edinburgh, 1899, page 13, number 46, which also gives relationships for this family.