I'ANSON international

Transcript of "The History of the I'Anson Family" by Brian I'Anson



(Translated from an old French account.)

THE DE FORBIN FAMILY ranks amongst the most illustrious families of Provence, partly through its nobility, alliances, possessions, dignities, and titkes possessed by the family, partly through signal services rendered to the Crown, and partly by the men of renown it has produced. It originates from the Forbes family in Scotland, the name being taken from the Seignory of Forbes in Aberdeenshire.

The origin is conclusively proved by documentary evidence and by tradition, and it is well known that, as with many other Scottish families at that time, close relationship and constant touch existed with the French. The first de Forbin was Pierre de Forbin, son of Alexander de Forbes, and he came to France and contracted a marriage with Françoise d’Agoult in 1325. King Alexander II Gave to this Fergus the estates in Aberdeenshire now belonging the family.

PIERRE DE FORBIN was made Chevalier in 1350 for services in a transaction between the chief gentleman of Marseille and their Bishops. He died 26th January, 1362, and left his son, Guillaume de Forbin, as heir. He resided in Marseilles, where his descendants still occupy high positions.

There are numerous branches of this family, each branch tracing its descent to Pierre de Forbin and Françoise d’Agoult. The chief of these are –

  1. That of the Seigneurs and Marquis de Janson.
  2. That of the Seigneurs de la Roque.
  3. That of the Seigneurs de la Barben, which sprang from Bernadin de Forbin, third son of Jean, of the branch of the marquis de Janson.
  4. That of the Seigneurs de la Fare, Barons and Marquis d’Oppède, originating from Vincent de Forbin, second son of Bernadin, Seigneur de la Fare, Baron d’Anfouis. He was three times Consul of Marseilles.
  5. The Seigneurs de sainte Croix.
  6. The Seigneurs de Soliers.
  7. The Seigneurs de Gardanne.
Amongst distinguished members of the family of de Forbin have been many Chevaliers de Saint Louis, de Malta &c., &c.

PIERRE DE FORBIN married Françoise d’Agoult in 1325. The family of d’Agoult were established in Provence and the Dauphiné, a house amongst the most ancient and illustrious, and from which the house of DE SIMIANE has sprung. Amongst the distinguished members of the family of d’Agoult have been Leger, Bishop of Apt in 1113, twenty-two Chevaliers of the Order of Malta, two "Chanoines-comtes" de Lyon, one Chanoinesse du Chapitre de Remiremont, one Abbesse and on Chanoinesse de Bousières, three Chevaliers of the Order of saint-Esprit, four Chevaliers of the Order of Annonciade de Savoie, one Grand Sénéchal of Provence, many Lieutenants-General in the Army, and the family have made alliances with the houses of d’Adhémar, d’Ancezune, d’Anduse, d’Arpajon de Baux-Orange, de Bèrenger de Castellane, de Chateaune-Rando, de Clermont-Montorson, de Villeneuve-Vence, and de Vintimille. The son of Pierre de Forbin and Françoise d’Agoult was –

GUILLAUME DE FORBIN, who married Gauffride Borgarelli, the daughter of a Florentine Noble, by whom he had three sons.

  1. Jean, the first Marquis de Janson.
  2. Dragoult, who married Hyacinth de Mortier.
  3. Bertrand de Forbin, who married, firstly, Catharine de Arbore, and, secondly, Marguerite Vassal.
JEAN DE FORBIN, first Marquis de Janson, married Isoarde de Marini, and had by her three sons and two daughters.


  1. Jean, second Marquis de Janson.
  2. Palemède.
  3. Jacques.
  • Doucette.
  • Catharine
  • Jaques, the third son, settled in Flanders, and was the father of John Janson, the first of the family in England. [Note: We have found no documentary evidence so far to support the assertion that this assertion - M.L.I.]
  • From this Jacques is also descended the celebrated Cornelius Janson, Bishop of Ypres and head of the sect known aas Jansonists or Jansenists. 
  • Another descendent, the celebrated Artist, Cornelius Janson, many of whose paintings exist in England, painted many portraits for the Bankes family, of kingston Hall, county Dorset, from which family Sir Thomas I’Anson took a wife.

Arms of d’Agoult-

Arms-D’or, à un loup ravissant d’azur, armé et lampassé de gueules.
Supports-Deux loups au naturel.
Cimier-Un loup au naturel.
Devise-"Bonté, hospitalité d’Agoult."
Legends-"Avidus committere pugnam."
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