Doing God’s Work: The Monks

It is week 25 in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks writing challenge. This week’s writing prompt is Unexpected. Unexpected? The one thing I have learned in more than two decades of genealogical research is to expect the unexpected. You never know what you are going to uncover! Take for example my recent “religious” findings…


My genealogical research has uncovered dozens of ancestors who devoured themselves to God, so many so that I began a series of posts titled Doing God’s Work: Our Families’ Faithful. This is the tenth installment. In the previous post of this series, I presented the life and times of Ela of Salisbury, an abbess.  This one focuses on the life of three direct ancestors who were monks.

Bermudo I of Asturias

The first ancestor is my 38th great-grandfather, Bermudo I of Asturias (a country located on the Iberian Penisula). Born circa 750, Bermudo I was the son of Fruela of Cantabria. the king of Asturias (a country located on the Iberian Peninsula).

In 788, Bermudo was elected by the palatine officials (the nobility of the royal palace) to replace King Mauregatus, who had passed away. It has been speculated that Bermudo was considered the candidate to prevent the succession of Alfonso II, the heir of Fruela I. At the time of his appointment, Bermudo was a deacon.

Bermudo reigned for three years. During that time, he defended against an Arab-Berber invasion of Álava and Galicia and was ultimately defeated in the Battle of the Burbia River in the year 791. That battle was the first major engagement in a series of campaigns launched against Asturia in the 790s. After the defeat, Bermudo abdicated his throne, though whether voluntarily (as the Chronicle of Alfonso III states, “because he was [or remembered he was] a deacon”) or because he was forced is unknown. Nevertheless, he was considered a generous and illustrious man in his time, and, as the Chronicle of Albeda asserts, “merciful and pious.”

Bermudo was succeeded by Alfonso II, with whom he was on good terms. Bermudo’s son later reigned as Ramiro I. Bermudo lived until 797, with many sources claiming that he spent his remaining days as a monk.


Fortún Garcés of Pamplona

My second “monkish” ancestor is Fortún Garcés of Pamplona, my 36th great-grandfather.

The eldest son of García Íñiguez of Pamplona and Urraca, little is know of Fortún Garcés’ life. His father, the king of Pamplona cultivated an alliance with the kingdom of Asturias to stand strong against Muslim foes. García Íñiguez was involved in repeated armed conflicts the Banu Qasi and Muhammad I, emir of Córdoba. In 860, Muhammad’s armies invaded Pamplona and captured Fortún and his daughter Onneca Fortúnez and took them hostage. Muhammad’s forces besieged and ultimately destroyed the castle of Aibar, resulting in the death of García Íñiguez. After his father’s death, Fortún Garcés was returned to Pamplona to rule.

Unlike his predecessor, Fortún Garcés’ reign was much more accommodating of the Banu Qasi clan. Unfortunately, his stance angered some Pamplonese nobility. When the tensions would become too great, Fortún Garcés would convalesce at the Monastery of Leyre.

In 905, the Pamplonese nobility had enough of Fortún Garcés’ diplomacy and took away his crown, naming Sancho Garcés as his successor. No longer burdened by the throne, Fortún Garcés retired to the Monastery of Leyre in the year 905, spending his remaining days there as a monk. He died in 922.


Robert de Ros

The final ancestor who spent part of his life in monastic living was Robert de Ros (my 24th and two-times 25th great-grandfather), one of the sureties of the Magna Carta. To read more about his life, please check out this post.

Categories: Cole-Marriner Line, Famous Faces and Places, Our Families' Faithful, Watts-Stark Line | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Post navigation

2 thoughts on “Doing God’s Work: The Monks

  1. Pingback: Doing God’s Work: The Blesseds | Princes, Paupers, Pilgrims & Pioneers

  2. Pingback: *Press it* Doing God’s Work: The Monks #141 | Its good to be crazy Sometimes

Please share your thoughts...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Sheila's Archive

A Family History

Anna's Musings & Writings

A Catholic and Aspiring Contemplative's Journey, Genealogy, Odds and Ends . . .

Rhos Helyg Family History Services

Follow my family history adventures and more

Personal Prologue: Family Roots and Personal Branches

Copyright©2021, Margo Lee Williams, All Rights Reserved

Once Upon A Lifetime: Tales And Vignettes Of My Ancestors

MaryAnne Slabik-Haffner, Family History Author

Rhyme Schemes and Daydreams

Things That Interest Me

The Chiddicks Family Tree

Every Family has a story to tell..........Welcome to mine

writing my past

in which I document my genealogical research adventures and explore the people and events from my family's history…

Deeper Roots Genealogy

~ Discovering Your Family's Past To Shape Your Future ~

Delving into the past

Here you shall find, my writings, about my family research, and general research into murders, and other people's ancestry, where I dig deep, and find all kinds of information about my family, whether it is good or bad, and my life itself in general, there are some sad, informative, facts here, which I hope, will get you guys blogging, so what are you waiting for? Get reading!

A Pennsylvania Dutch Genealogy

the genealogy & family research site of Kris Hocker

The Family Letter Blog

Connecting Generations

Discovering Yesterday

Preserving the history of ordinary people

Barb's GeNealogy Life

Combining two of my favorite addictive pastimes - family history and writing.

Skeletons In The Closet

The Writing Blog of P.D.Blake

Past Presence

A site for genealogists and family historians

Julie's Genealogy & History Hub

Blog of Brass Oak Genealogy

The Family Kalamazoo

A genealogical site devoted to the history of the DeKorn and Zuidweg families of Kalamazoo and the Mulder family of Caledonia

From Shepherds and Shoemakers

Sharing musings, insights, resources and strategies as I discover my family history.

Its good to be crazy Sometimes

A view from the inside of going through the minefield of the British benefit system if you are disabled and the ups and downs of coping with mental illness

WORD!

Words of wisdom, inspiration, feeling

Rants, Rambles, Revelations, Remembrances

Because the voice in my head won't stay silent...

Genealogy for Children

How to engage children in genealogy and family history

Brumley Family Branches

A Genealogy Blog

GenTraveling

Collecting stories from family historians who are climbing their family trees and planning trips to where their ancestors actually lived!

Kindred Stories

Everyone has a story

OurGreatAncestors

Where Distant Family Become Close

Jill's Garden

Garden of Life

Chips Off the Old Block

A blog devoted to genealogical wanderings - dedicated to family near and far, through distance and time

Applegate Genealogy

Helping others discover their roots

Gary A Wilson Stories

10 Minute Adventures, Fiction and Coffee Breaks

Shaking The Branches

Sharing Stories From My Family Tree

Decoding the Family Tree

solving family history one branch at a time.

Bespoke Genealogy

UK and Ireland: Genealogy, History and Travel

The Letters

Louise Mabey

From Ballachulish to South Mississippi

Mississippi family history letters

Myricopia

Exploring the Past to Improve the Future

Aquila's Place

An Eccentric Mix of Literature and Opinions

The Women Who Made Me

Finding the extraordinary in the ordinary

F Yeah History

History...but better

Amanda Bradburn

Author | Editor | Genealogist | Historian

Winter-Maker

Actor, Writer, and Embroidery Artist seeking beauty and humour.

Today in History

"Tell me a fact, and I'll learn. Tell me a truth, and I'll believe. But tell me a story, and it will live in my heart forever." - Steve Sabol, NFL Films

Empty Branches on the Family Tree

Genealogy Tips & Family History

Dusty Roots & Forgotten Treasures

Researching, Preserving, and Sharing Genealogical Information For Future Generations

%d bloggers like this: