Maud Marshal

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Maud Marshal
Countess of Norfolk
Countess of Surrey
Died27 March 1248
Noble familyMarshal
De Clare
Spouse(s)Hugh Bigod, 3rd Earl of Norfolk
William de Warenne, 5th Earl of Surrey
Roger Bigod, 4th Earl of Norfolk
Hugh Bigod
Isabel Bigod
Ralph Bigod
William Bigod
John de Warenne, 6th Earl of Surrey
Isabella de Warenne
FatherWilliam Marshal, 1st Earl of Pembroke
MotherIsabel de Clare, suo jure 4th Countess of Pembroke

Maud Marshal, Countess of Norfolk, Countess of Surrey (1192 – 27 March 1248) was an Anglo-Norman noblewoman and a wealthy co-heiress of her father William Marshal, 1st Earl of Pembroke, and her mother Isabel de Clare suo jure 4th Countess of Pembroke. Maud was their eldest daughter.[1] She had two husbands: Hugh Bigod, 3rd Earl of Norfolk, and William de Warenne, 5th Earl of Surrey.

Maud was also known as Matilda Marshal.


Maud's birthdate is unknown other than being post 1191. She was the eldest daughter of William Marshal, 1st Earl of Pembroke and Isabel de Clare, 4th Countess of Pembroke, herself one of the greatest heiresses in Wales and Ireland. Maud had five brothers and four younger sisters. She was a co-heiress to her parents' extensive rich estates.

Her paternal grandparents were John FitzGilbert Marshal and Sybilla of Salisbury, and her maternal grandparents were Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke, known as "Strongbow", and Aoife of Leinster.

Marriages and issue[edit]

Sometime before Lent in 1207, Maud married her first husband, Hugh Bigod, 3rd Earl of Norfolk. It was through this marriage between Maud and Hugh that the post of Earl Marshal of England came finally to the Howard Dukes of Norfolk.[2] In 1215, Hugh was one of the twenty-five sureties of the Magna Carta. He came into his inheritance in 1221, thus Maud became the Countess of Norfolk at that time. Together they had five children:[3]

  • Roger Bigod, 4th Earl of Norfolk (1209–1270) He died childless.
  • Hugh Bigod (1212–1266), Justiciar of England. Married Joan de Stuteville, by whom he had issue.
  • Isabel Bigod (c. 1215–1250), married firstly Gilbert de Lacy of Ewyas Lacy, by whom she had issue; she married secondly John Fitzgeoffrey, Lord of Shere, by whom she had issue.
  • Ralph Bigod (born c. 1218, date of death unknown), married Bertha de Furnival, by whom he had one child.

Contrary to the assertion of Frederick Lewis Weis, Ancestral Roots, there is no evidence for a fourth son called Simon Bigod. A man of that name appears as a witness to one of Earl Hugh's charters (Morris, HBII 2), but as the eighteenth name in a list of twenty, suggesting no close connection to the main branch of the family. He is also named among the knights who surrendered to King John at Framlingham Castle in 1216. He was probably a descendant of Hugh or William Bigod, half-brothers to Earl Roger II Bigod.

Hugh Bigod died in 1225. Maud married her second husband, William de Warenne, 5th Earl of Surrey before 13 October that same year. Together they had two children:

Maud's second husband died in 1240. Her youngest son John succeeded his father as the 6th Earl of Surrey, but as he was a minor, Peter of Savoy, uncle of Queen consort Eleanor of Provence, was guardian of his estates.


Maud died on 27 March 1248 at the age of about fifty-six years and was buried at Tintern Abbey with her mother, possibly her maternal grandmother, and two of her brothers.

Maud Marshal in literature[edit]

Maud Marshal is the subject of a novel by Elizabeth Chadwick, titled To Defy a King. In the book she is called Mahelt rather than Maud. She and her first husband Hugh Bigod appear as secondary characters in books chronicling their parents's lives: The Time of Singing (UK: Sphere, 2008) published in the USA as For the King's Favor; The Greatest Knight; and The Scarlet Lion.



  1. ^ Thomas B. Costain, The Magnificent Century, pp. 103–104
  2. ^ Costain, The Magnificent Century, pp. 103–104
  3. ^ Charles Cawley, Medieval Lands, Earls of Norfolk, Bigod
  • Thomas B. Costain, The Magnificent Century, published by Doubleday and Company, Garden City, New York, 1959
  • Charles Cawley, Medieval Lands, Earls of Pembroke
  • 10677.htm#106761