Nielsen Hayden genealogy


Female - 1413

Personal Information    |    Notes    |    Sources    |    All

  • Name Margaret  
    Gender Female 
    Death 27 Jun 1413 
    Burial Felbrigg, Norfolk, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Person ID I36185  Ancestry of PNH, TNH, and others | Ancestor of DDB
    Last Modified 14 Sep 2021 

    Family Simon Felbrigge,   b. Bef 1366, of Felbrigg, Norfolk, England Find all individuals with events at this locationd. Between 21 Sep 1442 and 20 Feb 1443 (Age > 76 years) 
    Marriage Abt 1386  [1
    +1. Alana Felbrigge   d. 5 Feb 1458
    Family ID F21276  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart
    Last Modified 19 Feb 2023 

  • Notes 
    • She was a lady-in-waiting and very likely a kinswoman to the wife of Richard II, Queen Anne of Bohemia. The idea that she was a daughter of Przemysl I Nosak, Duke of Teschen and Glogau (in Silesia) and his wife Eliska of Beuthen-Kosel appears to have originated with a pedigree of the Tyndall family made 200 years later by John Philipot, Somerset Herald 1624-45, who asserted that Margaret was that duke's heir (she was not; he had two perfectly good sons who left issue) and that her mother was a daughter of the Emperor Charles V (she was not; we have comprehensive knowledge of Charles's daughters and sisters, and none of them married a Silesian duke). Later versions of this pedigree backed away from the connection to Charles V but continued to assert that Margaret was a daughter of Duke Przemysl by his actual wife, Elizabeth, daughter of Boleslaw (also called Bolko), Duke of Beuthen.

      Variations of this have been believed until quite recently by a number of respectable genealogists and historians who don't appear to have looked at the evidence very closely. It was hardly unknown for the daughters of aristocratic Continental families to marry highborn Englishmen in the late Middle Ages. But as Charles M. Hansen pointed out in 2004 in "Margaret, Wife of Sir Simon Felbrigg, Ancestress of Margaret (Tyndal), Wife of Gov. John1 Winthrop of Massachusetts Bay Colony" (The American Genealogist 79:283, 2004), absolutely no contemporary evidence exists for the ducal model of the origins of Margaret, first wife of Simon Felbrigg. The memorial brass for her and her husband in Felbrigg church calls her generoso sanguine Boema. Although by the fifteenth century, generosus could conceivably still mean "highborn" -- if one were deliberately deploying the term in a by-then antiquated way -- in fact it far more often meant the lowest stratum of the armigerous, below that of esquire. And at any rate either sense of generoso is in strong contrast to how the same brass describes Queen Anne, nobilissime domine Domine Anne quondam Anglie Regine, "the most noble lady, the Lady Anne, formerly Queen of England." Margaret is further described on the brass as olim domicella, which is to say, one-time lady-in-waiting to the queen. If she were actually the daughter of a duke, that would be front and center on this brass, not absent from it. Much has been made of the fact that on the center pole atop the brass are the arms of Simon Felbrigg impaling those of his wife, whose arms are an eagle displayed, because the arms of the dukes of Teschen were azure, an eagle displayed, or. This ignores the fact that roughly 5,271,009 major and minor houses of Europe contain an eagle displayed. Finally, Simon Felbrigg was far too minor a knight to be a plausible husband for the daughter of a duke. And as Hansen put it, "a Bohemian lady-in-waiting who accompanied Queen Anne to England and was expected to remain there with her would, as in similar cases, be a member of the minor nobility or gentry."

      This fanciful model of Margaret's origins was probably fueled by a variety of tall tales traded among her Tyndall descendants -- including Humphrey Tyndall, D.D., Dean of Ely (1578-1614), an educated man and a heraldry enthusiast -- about how this or that member of their Tyndall ancestors had, because of their line's descent from Margaret, been quietly offered the crown of Bohemia "through an intrigue of the Protestant party headed by the Archbishop of Cologne," but refused it, saying he would rather be an English subject than a foreign prince. Needless to say, no continental evidence whatsoever exists for any such effort by the Archbishop of Cologne. Finally, the fact that Margaret was a direct ancestor of Margaret Tyndall (d. 1647), third wife of John Winthrop, first governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, probably gave further momentum to the perpetuation of all this entertaining nonsense.

  • Sources 
    1. [S142] Royal Ancestry: A Study in Colonial and Medieval Families by Douglas Richardson. Salt Lake City, 2013.