Robert Hales
BL Royal MS 18 E I (cropped).jpg
The murder of Archbishop Simon Sudbury and Hales at the Tower of London
Bornc. 1325
High Halden, Kent, England
Died14 June 1381(1381-06-14) (aged 55–56)
Tower Hill, London, England
Service years1372–1377
RankAdmiral of the West

Sir Robert Hales (c. 1325 – 14 June 1381) was Grand Prior of the Knights Hospitaller of England, Lord High Treasurer, and Admiral of the West. He was killed in the Peasants' Revolt.


In 1372 Robert Hales became the Lord/Grand Prior of the Knights Hospitallers of England. Richard II appointed him Lord High Treasurer,[1] so he was responsible for collecting the hated poll tax. He was appointed Admiral of the West from 24 November 1376 – 24 November 1377.[2] He was beheaded on 14 June 1381 on Tower Hill during the Peasants Revolt. His estate and assets were inherited by his brother, Sir Nicholas de Hales, the progenitor of many prominent English Hales families. Robert Hales was present at many latter-day crusader expeditions and is recorded as leading a contingent of hospitaller knights at the sacking of Alexandria.

Hales was described by the chronicler Thomas Walsingham as a "Magnanimous knight, though the Commons loved him not".


He was the son of Nicholas Hales and his brother was Sir Nicholas de Hales, who inherited his father's estates in Kent.[1][3]

Political offices Preceded byThomas Brantingham Lord High Treasurer 1381 Succeeded bySir Hugh Segrave Military offices Preceded byWilliam Montagu Admiral of the West 24 November 1376 – 24 November 1377 Succeeded byMichael de la PoleAdmiral of the North and West


  1. ^ a b Hasted, Edward (1798). "Parishes". The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent. Institute of Historical Research. 6: 80–98. Retrieved 6 April 2014.
  2. ^ Gorski, Richard (2012). Roles of the Sea in Medieval England. Boydell Press. p. 84. ISBN 9781843837015.
  3. ^ Burke, John. A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Extinct and Dormant Baronetcies ..., p. 232, at Google Books