Othon de Grandson

The tomb of Othon de Grandson in Lausanne

Othon de Grandson was one of the most experienced diplomats and military experts of his age. In his youth he fought with the Lord Edward, King Henry III eldest son, against the forces of Simon de Montfort. He had played an active part in Edward's 1271 crusade to Palestine. He was one of the English army's leaders during the Welsh campaigns of 1277 and 1282. He was the leader of the English force sent to Palestine in 1290. He had been tasked by Pope Nicholas IV, after the fall of Tripoli in Lebanon to the Muslims in 1289, to organise a military alliance with the Mongol empire against the forces of Islam. Othon was present during he final siege of the city of Acre. When it was lost to the Muslims on the 18th May 1291 he escaped with his surviving men to Cyprus. Othon de Grandson was an English member of parliament and owner of lands in England, in the Grandson region of Switzerland, at that time Savoy and in remote Ireland. He was Lord of the Channel Islands. The Eagle Tower, the most imposing tower at Edward's new castle at Caernarfon in North Wales was built for Othon in his role as Justiciar of that newly conquered country. He was ninety years old when he died. He was interred in the then fifty year old Gothic Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Lausanne, Switzerland, where his tomb can be seen to this day.