Margaret III, Countess of Flanders

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Margaret III, Countess of Flanders
Margaret of Dampierre.jpg
Margaret of Dampierre, Countess of Flanders
Spouse(s) Philip I, Duke of Burgundy
Philip the Bold
Noble family House of Dampierre
Father Louis II of Flanders
Mother Margaret of Brabant
Born (1350-04-13)13 April 1350
Died 16 March 1405(1405-03-16) (aged 54)

Margaret of Dampierre (13 April 1350 – 16/21 March 1405) was the last Countess of Flanders (as Margaret III) of the House of Dampierre, Countess of Artois and Countess Palatine of Burgundy (as Margaret II) and twice Duchess consort of Burgundy.


She was the only surviving child and heir of Louis de Mâle, Count of Flanders, Count of Nevers, and Count of Rethel (1346–1384); and his wife Margaret of Brabant. Through his mother, Margaret I, Louis was also Count of Burgundy and Count of Artois (1382–1384). Through her mother, Margaret of Brabant, daughter of John III, Duke of Brabant, the younger Margaret was also an heiress of the Duchies of Brabant and Limburg, but passed this title on to her son Antoine.

In 1357, the young Margaret, then seven, married Philip of Rouvres, grandson and heir of Odo IV, Duke of Burgundy. Philip was eleven years old and her second cousin. He was count of Burgundy and Artois (1347–1361), Duke of Burgundy (1350–1361), and became Count of Auvergne and Boulogne (1360–1361).

Margaret was widowed in 1361, and with the death of her husband the duchy of Burgundy was inherited by John II of France (as John I of Burgundy).
In 1363 Philip the Bold, John's youngest son, was granted the duchy as Philip II, and subsequently married its former duchess, Margaret. Margaret's second marriage to Philip II took place in 1369. Philip had earlier been Duke of Touraine (1359–1363), and became later also Count of Charolais (1390–1404).

When Margaret's father died in 1384, she and Philip inherited the counties of Artois, Burgundy, Flanders, Nevers, and Rethel. Philip died in 1404, and Margaret died the next year. With her death, the House of Dampierre became extinct and the County of Flanders lost its independence. It came under the rule of the House of Burgundy and later of the House of Habsburg.

According to Guizot, her father had not wished her to marry a Frenchman, being more friendly to England; he was persuaded to agree to the marriage by his mother, Margaret of France.


Margaret and Philip had the following children:


The main line of the House of Dampierre ended with Margaret III. The Dampierres, originally only counts of Flanders, had through a clever marriage policy managed to inherit the counties of Nevers (1280) and Rethel (1328). Through her grandmother, a daughter of King Philip V of France, the counties of Artois and Burgundy (the "Franche Comté") were added to this (1382). These lands were to provide the core of the dominions of the House of Valois-Burgundy, which were, together with the Duchy of Burgundy, to provide them with a power base to challenge the rule of their cousins, the Valois kings of France in the 15th century.

Her eldest son, John the Fearless, succeeded her husband in 1404 as Duke of Burgundy and her as Count of Burgundy, Count of Artois, and Count of Flanders. In 1406 her younger son Anthony inherited Brabant and Limburg. Nevers and Rethel were at first, in her lifetime, given to her eldest sons John (Nevers) and Anthony (Rethel), but after John's accession to the duchy, Nevers went to her youngest son Philip. Rethel was given to Philip in 1402 when it became clear that Anthony would inherit Brabant.

Her residences[edit]

The château de Germolles château de Germolles

In Burgundy, the château de Germolles offered by Philip the Bold to Margaret of Flanders in 1381 was embellished by the princess. Largely preserved, it is today one of the best example of the princely residences in France at the end of the Middle Ages.


Margaret III, Countess of Flanders
Born: 13 April 1350 Died: 21 March 1405
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Louis of Mâle
Countess of Artois and Blason Comte-de-Flandre.svg Flanders
Countess Palatine of Burgundy

30 January 1384 – 21 March 1405
Succeeded by
John the Fearless
Countess of Nevers
Countess of Rethel
30 January 1384 – 1402
Succeeded by
Anthony of Burgundy
French nobility
Preceded by
Joan III of Burgundy
Duchess consort of Burgundy
Succeeded by
Margaret of Bavaria