Thomas Montagu, 4th Earl of Salisbury

Thomas Montagu, 4th Earl of Salisbury, KG (13 June 1388  3 November 1428) of Bisham in Berkshire, was an English nobleman and one of the most important English commanders during the Hundred Years' War.

Thomas Montacute
Sir Thomas Montagu and his wife Lady Eleanor Holland (Wrythe Garter Book)
Born13 June 1388
Died3 November 1428(1428-11-03) (aged 40)
Meung-sur-Loire, France
Died of wounds
Resting placeBisham Abbey, Berkshire
Title4th Earl of Salisbury
Tenurefrom 14 June 1409
Other titles6th and 3rd Baron Montagu
5th Baron Monthermer
Count of Perche
Years active1414–1428
NationalityKingdom of England
ResidenceBisham manor, Berkshire
Wars and battlesHundred Years' War
Battle of Agincourt (1415)
Battle of Baugé (1421)
Battle of Cravant (1423)
Battle of Verneuil (1424)
Siege of Orléans (1428) 
Spouse(s)Eleanor Holland
IssueAlice Montacute, 5th Countess of Salisbury
ParentsJohn Montacute, 3rd Earl
Maud Francis


He was the eldest son of John Montagu, 3rd Earl of Salisbury (died 1400), who was killed while plotting against King Henry IV in 1400, and his lands forfeited. The lands were partly retrieved by Thomas in 1409, and fully in 1421. His mother was Maud Francis, daughter of Sir Adam Francis (born c. 1334), Mayor of London.


Thomas was summoned to Parliament as Earl of Salisbury in 1409, although he was not formally invested as earl until 1421. In 1414 he was made a Knight of the Garter. In July 1415 he was one of the seven peers who tried Richard, Earl of Cambridge on charges of conspiring against King Henry V. Montagu then joined King Henry V in France, where he fought at the Siege of Harfleur and at the Battle of Agincourt.[2] Montagu fought in various other campaigns in France in the following years. In 1419 he held an independent command and was appointed lieutenant-general of Normandy and created Count of Perche,[2] part of Henry V's policy of creating Norman titles for his followers.

Although he was employed on some diplomatic missions, he took almost no part in politics[2] and spent most of the rest of his life as a soldier in France, leading troops in the various skirmishes and sieges that were central to that part of the Hundred Years' War. In 1423, he was appointed governor of Champagne, and in 1425 he captured the city of Le Mans. After a year in England he returned to a position of command in 1428, and fought at the Siege of Orléans, at which he lost his life on 3 November of that year.[2]

Marriages & progeny

He married twice:


On 27 October 1428 he was wounded during the Siege of Orléans, when the tower he was inside was hit by a cannonball. There are conflicting reports on the manner in which this wounded him; Enguerrand de Monstrelet states a piece of stone from the window 'carried away part of his face.' He died days later at Meung-sur-Loire on 3 November 1428.[3]


  1. Debrett's Peerage, 1968, Montagu of Beaulieu (original form of), p.788
  2. Kingsford 1911.
  3. de Monstrelet, Enguerrand (1440s). The Chronicles of Enguerrand de Monstrelet. p. 237.
Political offices
Preceded by
Governor of Champagne
Succeeded by
French nobility
Preceded by
New creation
Earl of Perche
Succeeded by
Peerage of England
Preceded by
John Montagu
Baron Monthermer
Succeeded by
Alice Montagu
Preceded by
John Montagu
Earl of Salisbury
Succeeded by
Alice Montagu
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