Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art: The Dinner Party: Heritage Floor: Margaret of Lincoln

signature image

Judy Chicago (American, b. 1939). The Dinner Party (Heritage Floor; detail), 1974–79. Porcelain with rainbow and gold luster, 48 x 48 x 48 ft. (14.6 x 14.6 x 14.6 m). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Foundation, 2002.10. © Judy Chicago. Photograph by Jook Leung Photography

Margaret of Lincoln
Date of birth unknown; d. 1266, Hamstead Marshall, Berkshire, England

Margaret came into control of the earldom of Lincoln when her husband, John de Lacy, died in 1240, leaving her in charge of four large manors. The wealthy widow traveled in interesting circles, numbering among her friends Robert Grosseteste, a maverick intellectual of the English church, a chancellor of Oxford University, and the bishop of Lincoln. Grosseteste dedicated and presented to Margaret his treatise on household and estate management, presumably for her use. She apparently managed the estates on her own until her marriage in 1242 to Walter Marshal, earl of Pembroke. This marriage, too, shortly left her a widow, in an even more enviable position than her first widowhood.

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