Hugh (Bigod) le Bigod
Privacy Level: Open (White)

Hugh (Bigod) le Bigod (abt. 1185 - bef. 1225)

Hugh "5th Earl of Norfolk" le Bigod formerly Bigod
Born about in Englandmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married about 1207 (to about Feb 1225) in Englandmap
Descendants descendants
Died before before about age 40 in Englandmap
Profile last modified | Created 14 Apr 2010
This page has been accessed 46,669 times.
Magna Carta Surety Baron
Hugh le Bigod was one of the twenty-five medieval barons who were surety for Magna Carta in 1215.
Join: Magna Carta Project
Discuss: magna_carta



Birth and Parents

Hugh was the son and main heir of Roger le Bigod and Ida de Toeni.[1][2][3] His birth date is uncertain but his parents married around Christmas 1181,[4][5] so a guesstimate of about 1185 may not be unreasonable.

Marriage and Children

Hugh married Maud Marshal, daughter of William Marshal and Isabel de Clare (also known as Isabel FitzGilbert), probably before Lent 1207.[1][2][3] They had the following children:

Possible additional children were:

  • William[1][2]
  • Richard, a priest, named as "nepos" (descendant) of "marescali Anglie, comitis Pembroch, et ... comitis Norfulcie" (Marshal of England, Earl of Pembroke ... and Earl of Norfolk) in a papal indulgence of 1235[1][2]


In 1215 Hugh and his father joined in the baronial unrest which led to the signing of the Magna Carta, of which they were both Surety Barons.[1][2]

In December 1215 Hugh was excommunicated, alongside his father and others, for his part in rebellion against King John. Hugh and Roger remained in rebellion until September 1217.[6]

In 1221 Roger le Bigod died. Hugh paid homage for his father's lands on 2 August 1221, and became 5th Earl of Norfolk overall,[1][2] and 3rd of the second creation.[3] Hugh also inherited the positions of Steward of the royal household and warden of Romford Forest, Essex.[1][2]

In the years 1221 to 1225, he

  • made a small gift of property to Subton Abbey, Suffolk[1][2]
  • granted the manor of Stockton, Norfolk to Hamo Lenveise[1][2]
  • granted land at Mettingham, Suffolk to John FitzAugustine[1][2]

In 1222 Hugh was granted the right to hold a market at Dovercourt, Essex.[3]

In 1223 he took part in a campaign against Llewelyn of Wales.[3]

On 11 February 1224-5 he witnessed the confirmation of the Magna Carta.[3]


Hugh died before 18 February 1224-5,[3] within days of his witnessing the Magna Carta confirmation. His wife survived him, going on to marry William de Warenne, one of the Illustrious Men listed as King John's advisers in the Magna Carta.[1][2]

Coat of arms

Or, a cross gules.[7]

Per pale Gules and Azure, a lion rampant ermine, as recorded during the signing of Magna Charta.[8][9]

Research Notes

Alleged son Simon

Blomefield's Topographical History of Norfolk suggests that Hugh was "said" to have had a son Simon, but gives no evidence for this.[10] There is no support for the relationship in Cokayne's Complete Peerage or other reliable sources more recent than Blomefield.[1][2]

Previously-shown son John

John Bigod has previously been shown on WikiTree as a son of Hugh. John's profile has no good sourcing, and he may never have existed.

Daughter said on Wikipedia to have married William Devereux

The Wikipedia entry for William Devereux says (as at 27 November 2021) that his first wife was a daughter of Hugh Bigod and Maud Marshall.[11] Wikipedia gives just one source for William Devereux's first wife being their daughter - an edition of a Welsh Assize Roll. The relevant paragraph in this book can be found on Familysearch, and whoever wrote this part of the Wikipedia article would appear to have misread it. The paragraph relates to a dispute between William Devereux and Roger Bigod, Bigod-41. It mentions a Roger Bigod as uncle of Roger, Bigod-41, not as uncle of William Devereux: the uncle is Roger Bigod, Bigod-39. There is no mention of a Hugh Bigod.[12]

Wikipedia's own article on Hugh Bigod lists no daughter who married William Devereux.[8]

Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Biography

For the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta in 2015, Professor Nigel Saul wrote a set of biographies of the Surety Barons. He and the Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Committee generously gave permission for them to be reproduced on WikiTree. They can be viewed here.


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 Douglas Richardson. Magna Carta Ancestry: A Study in Colonial and Medieval Families, 4 vols, ed. Kimball G. Everingham, 2nd edition (Salt Lake City: the author, 2011), Vol. I, pp. 200-202, Google Books
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 Douglas Richardson. Royal Ancestry: A Study in Colonial and Medieval Families, 5 vols, ed. Kimball G. Everingham (Salt Lake City: the author, 2013), Vol. I, pp. 364-366, BIGOD 7
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 G E Cokayne. Complete Peerage, revised edition, Vol. IX, St Catherine Press, 1936, pp. 589-593, viewable on Familysearch
  4. Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, Vol. I, p. 197, BIGOD 1
  5. Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. I, p. 362
  6. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, entry by S D Church for 'Bigod, Roger, second earl of Norfolk', print an online 2004, revised online 2006
  7. Matthew Paris. Historia Anglorum, Chronica majora 1250-1259, Part III (British Library Digitised Manuscripts); Royal MS 14 C VII, ff 157r-231r., The British Library
  8. 8.0 8.1 Wikipedia: Hugh Bigod, 3rd Earl of Norfolk
  9. Gentleman's Magazine, October 1821, p. 224, Google Books
  10. Francis Blomefield, 'North Erpingham Hundred: Felbrigg', in An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 8 (London, 1808), pp. 107-119, British History Online, accessed 27 November 2021
  11. Wikipedia: William Devereux (1219-1265)
  12. John Conway Davies (ed,). The Welsh assize Roll 1277-1284, University of Wales Press, 1940, Familysearch
See also:
  • For additional information about early baronies, see the top-level category page Early English Feudal Baronies. Individual category pages (links below) should include information specific to the category.


Magna Carta Project

Hugh le Bigod is a Magna Carta surety baron and has the Magna Carta Project as a manager.
See Bigod-1 Descendants for profiles of his descendants that have been improved and categorized by the Magna Carta project and are in a project-approved trail to a Gateway Ancestor. See this index for links to other surety barons and category pages for their descendants. See the project's Base Camp for more information about Magna Carta trails.

Sponsored Search

Sponsored Search by

No known carriers of Hugh's DNA have taken a DNA test.

Have you taken a DNA test? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Ancestry DNA.

Comments: 41

Leave a message for others who see this profile.
There are no comments yet.
Login to post a comment.
Bigod-1 and Bigod-7 do not represent the same person because: Bigod-1, is his grandson, they just didn't quite get the dependence put in and titled correctly. Someone needs to fix Bigod-1 and everyone else after his addition.
posted by [Living Seifert]
edited by [Living Seifert]
Has there been a misunderstanding? Bigod-7 was grandfather of the Hugh Bigod of this profile.

I see on the profile of Bigod-7 that you are querying the numbering of the Earls of Norfolk. Please also see Joe Cochoit's comment below on numbering of the Earls of Norfolk. We follow Cokayne on numbering. The Hugh of this profile therefore is the 5th Earl, and Bigod-7 the 3rd. The Cokayne entries for the Earls of Norfolk can be found in Vol. IX of the revised edition of his "Complete Peerage" at pp. 568 onwards.

[corrected for typos]

posted by Michael Cayley
edited by Michael Cayley
I have a Bigod on my tree who is my 24th great-grandmother with William Devereaux (1219-1265). I do not have her first name, her dates, or her parentage. I'm wondering if there is a connection.
posted by Scott Hutchins
According to Wikipedia ( ), William Devereux was first married to a daughter of Hugh and Maud and they had several children. After her death, William married Maud Giffard. You would need to review the sources, since none of the sources for Hugh Bigod indicate (to the best of my knowledge) a daughter that married William Devereux.
The sourcing on Wikipedia for William Devereux marrying a daughter of Hugh Bigod looks weak. It appears to be just one source, an edition of a Welsh Assize Roll, which, as I read it, actually does not support the relationship. Whoever wrote this part of the Wikipedia article has, I believe, misread what is in the book. It is viewable on Familysearch at go to p. 341.

Cokayne names only Isabel as a daughter of Hugh and Maud in a footnote which reads as if it is intended to mention all the known children apart from the oldest son who is named in the main text. Cokayne, Complete Peerage, revised edition, Vol. IX, p. 590, footnote c.

Unless good sourcing can be found, the suggestion that William Devereux married a daughter of Hugh Bigod should be regarded with considerable caution. I have added a warning marker to William Devereux's profile.

posted by Michael Cayley
Just to add that Wikipedia's own article on Hugh Bigod does not mention any daughter who married William Devereux. See,_3rd_Earl_of_Norfolk.
posted by Michael Cayley
Tim, methods of counting can vary which leads to confusion. This is especially difficult in very early creations of a title. You can say he was the 3rd earl of the 3rd creation of the title, or that he was the 5th earl of Norfolk overall. In this case actually, it is clear the the old title was settled on his grandfather (3rd earl) by Henry II so it was not a true new creation as we think of it in modern terms. As a way of standardizing such things, we follow Complete Peerage as the definitive source which makes this Hugh Bigod the 5th earl.
posted by Joe Cochoit
A quick internet search shows Hugh Bigod born abt 1186, is the 3rd Earl of Norfolk
posted by Tim (Moore) Schaeffer
Good catch, Liz. The "III" should be removed from this Hugh le Bigod.

Looking in Royal Ancestry, Vol I, under Bigod starting on page 362, I can't even find any Hugh the third - (this Hugh's father is Roger). This Hugh le Bigod had a son Hugh BUT that son did not have a son Hugh (who would have been Hugh III, but no such person).

Thanks Liz!

The Comment by Chase Ashley regarding the use of "Sir" motivated me to look up Hugh le Bigod's biography in Richardson's Royal Ancestry, Vol I, page 364. Hugh le Bigod is written by Douglas Richardson without the honorific of SIR, as:

"Hugh le Bigod, 5th Earl of Norfolk, died between 11th Feb. and 18 Feb. 1224/5."

Regardless that there may be more to it than can be covered here, and this era produces conflicting opinions among experts, it is my opinion WikiTree should continue to use "SIR" unless a question in G2G produces changes in the guidelines.

Hugh's son also named Hugh is written by Richardson with the honorific "SIR". A survey of other lords shows some with, others without.

Unless an original record can be produced that shows he was called "Sir", it should be deleted as a prefix since "Sir" supposedly wasn't used as an honorific in England until 1297 and, in any event, was for lesser mortal like knights and baronets.
posted by Chase Ashley
I rather like this point. Perhaps the same discussion could be explored about the prefix "Lady". However, I rather like to add that honorific to a female profile as I think it's deserved no matter the reason.

On another tack, I'm thinking it's the Buhun line where the 4th or 5th Lord made the King very mad and had his properties taken away. Thus he never became the 4th or 5th Lord though numerous scribes and historians play loose with that point for some reason. Fortnately for that family, the heir resumed the titles, but what was his proper number?

posted by Fletcher Trice
edited by Fletcher Trice
Fletcher, methods of counting can vary which leads to confusion. This is especially difficult in very early creations of a title. You can say he was the 3rd earl of the 3rd creation of the title, or that he was the 5th earl of Norfolk overall. In this case actually, it is clear the the old title was settled on his grandfather (3rd earl) by Henry II so it was not a true new creation as we think of it in modern terms. As a way of standardizing such things, we follow Complete Peerage as the definitive source which makes this Hugh Bigod the 5th earl.

I really dislike the prefix "Lady" and will often delete it. It is much more of a (relatively) modern thing than a medieval thing, especially in this time period. It also tends to get applied to many people inappropriately. Go through all the IPMs, close rolls, patent rolls, fine rolls, etc. and I don't think you will find many, if any, examples of a prefix being used in this form.

posted by Joe Cochoit
Deborah, Martha (Yonge) Moore is not a gateway ancestor. The problem is with her father's false father. George Young-3414, b. 1517 in Shropshire, was NOT the father of Christopher Yonges-9, b. 1575(!) in faraway Suffolk. That link should be detached.
posted by [Living Schmeeckle]
In reference to the previous message:

Martha (Yonge) Moore's ID # is Yonges-8, not Yonge-8. The relationship link to Hugh Bigod is through Hugh's daughter Isabel. Thank you.

My gateway ancestor is not listed on Hugh's information. I am a 23rd G granddaughter and would want to pursue this further. I have a gateway ancestor Martha (Yonge) Moore, ID # YONGE-8 as a possible candidate. What is the next step? Thank you

B  >  Bigod  |  L  >  le Bigod  >  Hugh (Bigod) le Bigod

Categories: House of Bigod | Earls of Norfolk | Early Barony of Framlingham | Bigod-2 Descendants | Magna Carta | Surety Barons