Ansbertus or Ansbert, Ausbert was a Frankish Austrasian noble, as well as a Gallo-Roman Senator. He is thought to be the son of Ferreolus, Senator of Narbonne and his wife Dode. This would make him the great-grandson of Tonantius Ferreolus, Praetorian Prefect of Gaul and his wife Papianilla.
Little of his actual life is known. His wife Billihild was reputed to be a daughter of Charibert I, Merovingian King of Paris, and granddaughter of Chlothar I. Published centuries later, the Liber Historiae Francorum states that an Ansbertus married Blithilde (also called Bilichilde), and that she was the daughter of "Lothar the father of Dagobert", and then continues the line to the Pippinids through his son Arnoald and his granddaughter Itta (wife of Pepin of Landen).
The chronological problems with the line as presented, have led modern genealogists to try to re-construct the line in various ways to fix them.
Marriage and issue
Some modern reconstructions posit that Ansbertus' wife must be, instead of a daughter of Lothar II, a daughter of Lothar I and make her the offspring of his brief relationship with Waldrada, proposing the following offspring:
- Arnual or Arnoldus or Arnoald, Bishop of Metz and Margrave of Schelde
- Saint Munderic, Bishop of Arisitum
- Tarsicius or Tarsice
- Erchinoald, mayor of the palace of Neustria
However the contemporary source The History of the Franks, by Gregory of Tours, our main source on the Merovingians during the time of this supposed union, does not ascribe to Waldrada any children by her brief unmarried relationship with Chlothar.
- "Chronicle of the Kings of England", William of Malmesbury, page 64
- "The History of the Franks" IV.9, by Gregory of Tours
- "Europe after Rome : a new cultural history 500-1000", by Julia M H Smith, Oxford University Press 2005 : "The Carolingian dynasty...appropriated the Roman past into its ancestry by a genealogy that claimed that its sainted (and historically attested) founder, Arnulf of Metz (d.c. 643) was the grandson of the (mythical) Merovingian princess Blithild and her (equally mythical) husband Ansbert, hailed as a Roman senator."
- Weis, Frederick Lewis Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonist Who Came To America Before 1700 (7th ed.), lines 180 (all) & 190-9
- New England Historic and Genealogical Register 101:112
- Christian Settipani, Les Ancêtres de Charlemagne (France: Éditions Christian, 1989).
- Christian Settipani, Continuite Gentilice et Continuite Familiale Dans Les Familles Senatoriales Romaines A L'epoque Imperiale, Mythe et Realite, Addenda I-III (juillet 2000-octobre 2002) (n.p.: Prosopographica et Genealogica, 2002).