Was Eleanor of Aquitaine my Ancestor? Generation 17 – Barbara Willems Pijlijser

This is the eighteenth post in a series about my possible line of descent from Eleanor of Aquitaine. In the first post, I explained how I discovered the possible line, and how I am going to verify it one generation at a time. In the last post, I proved that my thirteenth great-grandmother Claesken Peters die Paep was the daughter of Peter Claesen die Paep and Barbara Willems Pijlijser.

Barbara Willems Pijlijser, daughter of Johanna van Wijfliet

Research into Claesken Peters die Paep turned up two records that may help to identify the parents of Barbara Willems Pijlijser:

  • A record from 1499, naming Peter the son of Claes Spapen as the husband of Barbara his wife, daughter of the late Willem Pillysers.
  • A record from 1547 whereby Jan, son of the late Goessen Wouters, as husband of Jenneken daughter of Peter Claeus die Paep, whom Peter had procreated with the late Barbara his wife, daughter of the late [blank space in original], claimed the right of kinship to purchase property.

These and other records will be analyzed for evidence of the parents of Barbara Willems Pijlijser. This has been the hardest link to prove so far, so there is a lot of evidence. Feel free to skip to the conclusion.

Barbara, daughter of the late Willem Pijlijser

A hard to read record from 7 January 1499 identifies Peter the son of Claes Spapen as the husband of Barbara his wife, daughter of the late Willem Pillysers. They owe an annual hereditary rye rent from their property in the parish of Tilburg.1

This record identifies Barbara as the daughter of the late Willem Pillysers (a spelling variation of the name Pijlijser). Peter and/or Barbara were the probable informants. They would have known the name of her father and whether he was alive, making it likely that the information in this record is correct.

1499 court record

Willem Jans Pijlijser and Johanna van Wijfliet

A series of charters in the archives of the convents Mariënkroon and Mariëndonk in Heusden from 1473 and 1474 name a Willem Jans Pijlijser and Johanna (“Jan”) van Wijfliet who had a daughter Barbara.

A charter of 13 September 1473 shows Jan Pijlijser owned 1/8th of the estate of Willem Pijlijser in Baardwijk, that Jan Pijlijser inherited on the death of lady Jan van Wijflit his mother.2

Charter of 13 September 1473

On 11 November 1473, the aldermen of Heusden declared that Willem Pijlijser and his sons Jan and Hendrik transported land in Baardwijck to Godert Remboutszn. The land was encumbered with a rent of 22 Burgundy “stuiver” [coin], that Hendrik, Janna and Barbara, his sisters, would keep.3

Charter of 11 November 1473

On 20 December 1474, Godert Reijmboutszn promised to Henrick Pijlijser, Janna and Barbara, the children of Willem Pijlijser, a rent of 22 Burgundy stuiver from land in Baardwijk.4

Charter of 20 December 1474

The combination of these charters shows that Willem Pijlijser and Johanna van Wijfliet had the following children:

  • Jan
  • Hendrick
  • Janna
  • Barbara

The same four siblings are mentioned in a court record from Den Bosch from 27 April 1480 as the great-grandchildren of Elisabeth, widow of Henrick Daniels. In the same record, Johannes van Wijfliet, son of Willem Wijfliet, was mentioned as the grandson of Elisabeth.5

Court record

27 April 1480 court record

The lack of husbands suggests daughters Janna and Barbara were unmarried in 1474 and 1480. They could have been underage.

These charters and court record identify a Barbara, daughter of Willem Pijlijser. Could this Barbara, daughter of Willem Wijfliet and Johanna van Wijfliet be the wife of Peter die Paep?

Pijlijser kinship

A record created by Barbara Willem Pijlijser’s daughter Jenneken provides a link to Barbara’s family.

On 3 October 1547, Jan, son of the late Goessen Wouters, as husband of Jenneken daughter of Peter Claeus die Paep, whom Peter had procreated with the late Barbara his wife, daughter of the late [blank space in original], claimed the right of kinship to purchase property that Jan and Jacop, brothers, sons of the late Cornelis Heijmericks, had purchased from Otto van Asperen en Vueren as husband of lady Henricka, daughter of the late Willem son of the late Henrick Pijlijsers. The property had been purchased by Willem son of the late Henrick Pijlijsers from Margriet widow of Jan natural son of the late Jan Back, and had been appointed to Otto van Vueren as husband of Henricka in the estate division between the children of the late Willem Pijlijser, as is described in the aldermen’s papers in Tilburg and Heusden.6

1547 court record

They claimed the right of naarderschap: the right of kinship that allowed people the right of first purchase if property was sold by a family member, to prevent property from ending up in the hands of strangers. If property was sold, the next of kin of the seller had a year to submit their claim. They had to match the purchase price in cash. If multiple people claimed the right of kinship, the one with the closest relationship to the seller was allowed to purchase the property.7 This means there was no limit on the distance of the relationship for a kinship claim, which might have helped to narrow down how far back the common ancestors were.

Based on these laws, we can infer that Jan Goessen Wouters and Jenneken die Paep claimed kinship to the seller, Otto van Asperen en Vueren as husband of lady Henricka, daughter of the late Willem son of the late Henrick Pijlijsers. The fact that Jan specified that his wife was Jenneken daughter of Peter Claeus die Paep, whom Peter had procreated with the late Barbara his wife, daughter of the late [blank space in original] indicates the kinship was through Barbara, since that is the only reason the wife’s maternal grandmother would be named. Unfortunately, the space to specify her father’s name is left blank in the original. The kinship with Otto must have been through his father-in-law Willem Henricks Pijlisers, who had originally purchased the property. The 1499 record already told us that Barbara had a Pijlijser father, which is further evidence the kinship was through her.

The estate division between the children of the late Willem Henricks Pijlijser that is referenced in this record has not been found in the court records of Heusden and Tilburg. Was Willem’s father Henrick Pijlijser the same as Henrick, son of Willem Pijlijser and Johanna van Wijfliet, who had a sister Barbara?

Identifying Willem son of Henrick Pijlijser

The 1547 record identifies the wife of Otto van Asperen en Vueren as the “jonkvrouwe” [lady] Henricka, daughter of the late Willem son of the late Henrick Pijlijsers, with a connection to Tilburg and Heusden.

A Willem Pijlijser Henricks [=son of Henrick] was alderman of Heusden on 17 June 1499, when he attached his seal to a charter about an unrelated transaction.

1499 charter.

In 1506, Willem Pijlijser Henricks was a “schout” [approximately: mayor and sheriff] of Heusden when he acted on behalf of his overlord to give land in fief.9

1506 charter

In 1501, Willem, son of Hendrick Pijlijser, went before the Court of Holland to claim his inheritance. In the civil suit, he declared he was the son of the late Hendrick Pijlijser and Joost van Drongelen, who had only one son, Willem himself, who lost his mother when he was eight days old. His parents’ property included land in Baardwijk, Tilburg, Heusden, and a fief called Lange Bruckaert in Eethen. After his mother’s death, an agreement was made on behalf of Willem that he should receive all the property that his mother brought to the marriage, and after his father’s death he should receive the estate in Tilburg, and half of all the other property. His father, however, married another woman and disposed of much of the property. After his father’s death, Willem sued the purchasers of the property to get what was owed to him. The court dismissed his claim.10

This record shows that Willem was entitled to land in Tilburg, linking this Pijlijser family to Tilburg.

Willem, son of Hendrick Pijlijser

Hendricka, the wife of Otto van Asperen and Vueren in the 1547 kinship claim had a father Willem, son of Hendrick Pijlijser. A combination of evidence proves he was the Heusden sheriff and claimant before the court of Holland:

  • His name and father’s name match (Willem, son of Hendrick Pijlijser)
  • His mother Joost van Drongelen was a “jonckvrouw” [lady], the same as Hendricka, and Willem himself was a schout [mayor/sheriff], a function mainly held by members of the upper class though not necessarily by nobility. It would be a suitable position for a nobleman without an inheritance.
  • The 1547 record mentioned an estate division recorded in Heusden and Tilburg. This Willem, son of Hendrick Pijlijser had connections to both places: he was a sheriff in Heusden and was entitled to land in Tilburg.
  • No other Willem, son of Hendrick Pijlijser was found in this time and place.

The combination of these records shows that Hendrick Willems Pijlijser, the grandfather of Henricka Pijlijser from the kinship claim, is the same as Hendrick, son of Willem Pijlijser, sheriff of Heusden and claimant before the court of Holland.

Feudal registers: Lange Bruckaert in Eethen

The 1501 court case before Court of Holland showed that Willem son of Hendrick Pijlijser claimed to be entitled to a fief called Lange Bruckaert in Eethen.

The feudal register of Lek and Polanen records the transitions of this Lange Bruckaert property. In 1474, Henrick Pijlijser, son of the late Willem, received as fief the rent in Eethen located in the Lange Bruckaert, which he inherited at the death of his father. The previous entry on the page, from 1459, shows that Willem Pijlijsers, son of the late Jan Pijlijsers, knight, with consent of the feudal lord, awarded his wife, the lady Johan van Wijffliet, her dowager rights after his death, in the rent in Eethen in the Lange Broickaert.11

This record shows that Hendrick Willem Pijlijser who held the Lange Bruckaert was the son of Willem Pijlijser and Johanna van Wijfliet. As holder of the Lange Bruckaert fief, he must have been the father of the Willem son of Hendrick Pijlijser who appeared before the court of Holland claiming this fief as his inheritance.

Feudal register

Which Willem Pijlijser?

The 1499 court record named Barbara Pijlijser, the wife of Peter die Paep, as the daughter of Willem Pijlijser. The 1547 kinship claim shows she was related to Hendricka Pijlijser. The research into the relatives of Hendricka Pijlijser turned up two relatives of her named Willem Pijlijser: her father Willem Hendricks Pijlijser and great-grandfather Willem Pijlijser, the husband of Johanna van Wijfliet.

Hendricka’s father Willem Hendricks Pijlijser was not the father of Barbara, the wife of Peter die Paep:

  • The 1499 court record calls Barbara the daughter of the late Willem Pijlijser. Willem Hendricks Pijlijser was alive in 1499 and 1506, when he appeared in charters in Heusden, and in 1501, when he appeared before the Court of Holland to claim his inheritance.
  • Willem Hendricks Pijlijser’s daughter Josijn married in 1523.12 Barbara was already married by 1499. She could have married as much as twenty years earlier since her daughter Claesken was probably born between 1500 and 1510 as estimated in the previous blogpost. This suggests that Barbara and Josijn were of different generations.
  •  Willem Hendricks Pijlijser probably was not long into his adulthood by 1501, when he claimed his inheritance. That would make him too young to be the father of Barbara, who was married by 1499.
  • Willem Hendricks Pijlijser was named as father of Hendricka in the 1547 record. If he was Barbara’s father too, it does not make sense that the name of her father was left blank. The parties would have had to explain the family relationship to claim the right of kinship. If Hendricka and Barbara were sisters, that would have been easy to explain and the clerk would have known the name of Barbara’s father.
  • No evidence was found that this Willem had a daughter Barbara.

That leaves Willem Pijlijser and Johanna van Wijfliet as candidates to be Barbara’s parents. We had already seen that they had a daughter Barbara, mentioned in records from 1473, 1474, and 1480.

Naming patterns

Barbara and Peter die Paep had children named Anna, Willem, Jan, Claes(ken), and Jenneken.13 Willem was apparently named after his maternal grandfather. Jenneken could have been named after maternal grandmother Johanna van Wijfliet since Johanna/Jan/Jenneken were all variations of the same name. Willem Pijlijser and Johanna van Wijfliet had both died by 1474, so naming a son and daughter after them would have been the traditional thing to do.

Anniversary book

An anniversary book from the church of Tilburg provides further evidence that Willem Pijlijser and Johanna van Wijfliet were Barbara’s parents.

This particular book was started between 1502 and 1509, and records all the income promised to the church for masses to be said on the anniversaries of people’s deaths. The book was updated for a long period. The original entries were apparently copied from earlier registers that have not survived. P.C. Boeren researched the differences in handwriting to differentiate between the original pre-1509 entries and the later additions.14

An entry for 6 November identifies the anniversary of Wilhelmus Wijfliet and his wife Johanne, who donated for their annuity three “lopen” [measure] of corn from their estate, now paid by Peter die Paep.15 The writing is in the hand identified by Boeren as one of the original writers in 1502 to 1509. This means they founded the annuity some time before 1509, by which time Peter die Paep paid the pledged sum.

Anniversary book: entry starts at bottom of the first page and continues on the top of the second page.

This entry shows that by 1502 to 1509, Peter die Paep paid for the masses for Willem Wijfliet and his wife Johanna. Were they related to Johanna Wijfliet, wife of Willem Pijlijser?

Parents of Johanna Wijfliet

A court record from Den Bosch of 27 July 1461 mentions  Wijllelmus de Wijflet [Willem van Wijfliet] and his wife Johanne, daughter of Henrick Danels, together with their son-in-law Willem Pijliser, son of the late lord Jan Pijliser, knight, husband of lady Jenneke.16

The combination of a Willem Pijlijser, son of Jan with a wife Jenneke/Johanna van Wijfliet matches the information from the feudal register. The 1480 court record identified the great-grandmother of the Pijlijser children as Elisabeth, wife of Henrick Danels, which matches the name of Johanna’s father in this record.

The record shows that Willem Pijlijser’s wife Johanna van Wijfliet was the daughter of Willem van Wijfliet and his wife Johanne, daughter of Henrick Danels, whose names match the donors of the annuity for their masses in the Tilburg annuity register.

If Peter die Paep’s wife Barbara was Johanna van Wijfliet’s daughter, this explains why he was paying for the masses of Willem van Wijfliet and Johanne: they would have been his wife’s maternal grandparents.

Margriet widow of Jan Jan Back

The 1547 kinship claim said the property had been purchased by Willem son of the late Henrick Pijlijsers from Margriet widow of Jan natural son of the late Jan Back.

A Den Bosch court record from 15 December 1477 identifies Margriet, the wife of Jan, natural son of Jan Back, as the natural daughter of Willem van Wijflet and Margriet Gerits van den Zande.17

1477 court record

“Natural” daughter means that Margriet was born out of wedlock to Willem van Wijfliet and Margriet Gerits van der Zande.

This record shows that the property in the kinship claim had originally belonged to another member of the Wijfliet family, Margriet. Her father Willem was probably Willem van Wijfliet who was married to Johanna, the daughter of Henrick Danels; the only Willem van Wijfliet found in the court records and charters in this time and place.

If Margriet, the widow of Jan Jan Back, had not been related to the purchaser, there would have been no reason to mention her in the kinship claim. Her inclusion in the kinship claim implies that the property had been in the family even before the last purchase.

Conclusion

Barbara, the wife of Peter die Paep, was the daughter of Willem Pijlijser and Johanna Wijfliet.

A court record from 1499 identified Barbara’s father as the late Willem Pijlijser. Charters from 1473 and 1474 and a court record from 1480 showed that a Willem Pijlijser and wife Johanna Wijfliet had an apparently unmarried daughter Barbara and a son Henrick. Both Willem and Johanna died by 1474.

In 1547, Barbara’s daughter Jenneken die Paep filed a kinship claim to purchase property sold by Otto van Vueren and Henricka Pijlijser. Henricka was the granddaughter of Hendrick, son of Willem Pijlijser and Johanna Wijfliet, making her a first cousin once removed of Jenneken die Paep. Henricka’s father Willem Hendricks Pijlijser was living in 1506 and could not have been Barbara’s late father in 1499.

Willem Pijlijser m. Johanna Wijfliet
(daughter of Willem Wijfliet and Johanna, daughter of Henrick Daniels)
Married by 1459, both died by 1474
Barbara Willems Pijlijser m. Peter die Paep
Married by 1499, daughter of Willem Pijlijser deceased
Henrick Pijlijser m. Joost van Drongelen
Jenneken die Paep m. Jan Goessen Wouters
kinship claim in 1547
Willem Pijlijser
sheriff of Heusden in 1506
Henricka Pijlijser m. Otto van Asperen and Vueren
Sellers of property with kinship claim in 1547

Around 1502 to 1509, Barbara’s husband Peter die Paep paid for the masses to be said in the Tilburg church for Willem van Wijfliet and his wife Johanne. A 1461 court record identified them as the parents of Johanna, wife of Willem Pijlijser. That would make them Barbara’s grandparents, which explains why her husband would pay for masses to be held for them.

The property in the kinship claim was originally bought by Willem Henricks Pijlijser from Margriet, widow of Jan natural son of Jan Back. Margriet was born out of wedlock to Willem Wijfliet, probably the same Willem who was the father of Johanna van Wijfliet, which explains Margriet’s mention in the kinship claim.

Naming patterns support the identification of Willem Pijlijser and Johanna Wijfliet as Barbara’s parents: she had children Willem and Jenneken, a variation of Johanna.

That’s seventeen generations down, eleven to go!

Next up: Generation 18: Johanna van Wijfliet.


Sources

  1. Aldermen’s Court (Tilburg), general protocol, 1498-1499, fol. 1v, Spapen to Jacobs (7 January 1499); call no. 7897, Alderman’s Court of Tilburg, Record Group 14; Regionaal Archief Tilburg, Tilburg.
  2. Land titles of land in Baardwijk, charter 1212, Henrik Ynwijnszn claim to land of Jan Pijlijser (13 September 1473); call no. 136, convents Mariënkroon and Mariëndonk in Heusden, record group 239; Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum; finding aid and images, Archieven.nl (http://www.archieven.nl : accessed 24 February 2019).
  3. Land titles of land in Baardwijk, charter 1214, transfer of land by Willem Pijlijser and children (11 November 1473); call no. 136, record group 239, Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum.
  4. Land titles of land in Baardwijk, charter 1259, tithe to Willem Pijlijser’s children (20 December 1474); call no. 136, record group 239, Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum.
  5. Aldermen’s court (’s-Hertogenbosch), Bosch protocols, October 1479-September 1480, fol. 105v, estate division of Elisabeth widow of Henricus Danels (27 April 1480); call no. 1249, Aldermen’s court ’s-Hertogenbosch, Record Group 14; Erfgoed ’s Hertogenbosch, Den Bosch; imaged as “Zoeken” > “Bosch protocol 1367-1809,” Erfgoed ’s-Hertogenbosch (https://www.erfgoedshertogenbosch.nl/ : accessed 21 March 2019).
  6. Aldermen’s Court (Tilburg), general protocol, 1547, fol. 154-v, Jan Goessen Wouters kinship claim (3 October 1547); call no. 7939, Alderman’s Court of Tilburg, Record Group 14; Regionaal Archief Tilburg, Tilburg.
  7. Victor van Beughem, Costuymen, ende usantien der hooft-stadt ende meyerye van s’Hertoghen-Bossche (‘s-Hertogenbosch: Jan Scheffers, 1684), p. 75-84, title 10, of rights of kinship, articles 1-3, 8; imaged as Google Books (https://books.google.nl/books?id=zadpAAAAcAAJ : accessed 15 February 2019).
  8. Aldermen of Heusden, testimony about record of Hugensdr. to Scriekenzn, charter (17 June 1499); call no. 655, convents Mariënkroon and Mariëndonk in Heusden, record group 239; Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum; finding aid and images, Archieven.nl (http://www.archieven.nl : accessed 24 February 2019).
  9. Feudal transfer of tithes in the Kievitsven, charter (12 April 1506); call no. 4, Chapter of Heusden, Record Group 243; Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum; finding aid and images, Archieven.nl (http://www.archieven.nl : accessed 24 February 2019).
  10. Court of Holland, civil sentences 1501-1503, case 151, Willem Pijlijser vs. Ghijsbrecht vanden Dunck et al (1501); call no. 482, Court of Holland, Record Group 3.03.01.01; National Archives, The Hague.
  11. Domain of the Lek and Polanen, feudal register A, 1468-1484, fol. 27v-28r, Willem Pijlijser and Hendrick Pijlijser fiefs; call no. 7319, Nassau Domain Council, Record Group 1.08.11; National Archives, The Hague.
  12. Prenuptial agreement between Herbert van Vueren en Josijn Willem Pijlijserdr., charter (1523); call no. 904, Family Heereman van Zuydtwijck, Record Group 3.20.23; National Archives, The Hague.
  13. Aldermen’s Court (Tilburg), general protocol, 1532-1533, fol. 5r, Paep children debt to Verbunt (10 April 1532); call no. 280, Alderman’s Court of Tilburg, Record Group 14; Regionaal Archief Tilburg, Tilburg.
  14. For an in-depth analysis of the various hands and their dates, see P.C. Boeren, “Het oudste Liber Anniversariorum der kerk van Tilburg” [The oldest Liber Anniversariorum of the church of Tilburg,” Bossche Bijdragen 22 (1953-1955), 116-144.
  15. Roman Catholic Church (Tilburg), Liber Anniversiorum, entry for 6 November; call no. 546, collection acquisitions of the provincial archives Noord-Brabant, Record Group 339; Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum, Den Bosch; finding aid and images, Archieven.nl (http://www.archieven.nl : accessed 24 February 2019).
  16. Aldermen’s Court (‘s-Hertogenbosch), Bosch Protocol 1460-1461, fol. 214, Wijflet (27 July 1461); call no. 1231, Aldermen’s court of Den Bosch.
  17. Aldermen’s Court (‘s-Hertogenbosch), Bosch Protocol 1477-1478, fol. 112r, Wijflet (15 December 1477); call no. 1247, Aldermen’s court of Den Bosch.
About Yvette Hoitink

Yvette Hoitink is a professional genealogist in the Netherlands. She has been doing genealogy for almost 25 years. Her expertise is helping people from across the world find their ancestors in the Netherlands. Read about Yvette's professional genealogy services.

Comments

  1. I can’t even imagine all the records you had to read to find all this.

  2. Rob Aalders says

    Yvette
    I guess you know that she was known as “Eleanor, by the wrath of God, Queen of England”. Her personal history is interesting – very interesting.

    When she died, a comment on her death bears close relation to a song at the funeral of a recent dead British Royal.

    ” She passed from the world as a candle in the sconce goeth out when the wind strketh it.”

  3. Elizabeth says

    This is fascinating again, great work. I have been following this series from the beginning. It would be very helpful to see a table of descent at some stage tracking the proven generations on a page.

  4. Angelique Nota says

    Hello Yvette.

    The Pijlijserhoeve in Tilburg, unfortunately demolished in 1960, was one of the farms that belonged to the Tilburg Castle and was bought around 1500 by Willem Pijlijser and sold in 1557 by Jonkheer Goosewijn van Lawick, husband of his granddaughter Jonkvrouwe Anna van Asperen van Vuren .
    In those days it was a fortified farm surrounded by canals, the farm was also known as “Waterhoef” or “De Hoeve aen den Heerstal”, the canals were closed at the beginning of the last century.

    I grew up in Tilburg and have known this old farmhouse in my youth, nearby are the Waterhoefstraat and the Pijlijserstraat. There is also a square named after another ancestor of mine, Johan Verassen, steward of Antoine Schetz baron van Grobbendonck, owner of the Tilburg castle.

    https://wikimiddenbrabant.nl/Pijlijserhoeve_of_Waterhoef

    https://wikimiddenbrabant.nl/Johan_Verassenplein_(Tilburg)

  5. Angelique Nota says

    Goedenavond Yvette.

    Ik vond een aantal gebonden artikelen van Dhr, Ferdinand W. Smulders zoals ze verschenen zijn in de (Nieuwe) Tilburgse Courant, 1950 – 1956.
    Ik weet niet of je ermee bekend bent, zo niet, de moeite waard om te bekijken, wel weer een hele brok informatie, 148 bladzijden.
    Er staat o.a.veel informatie in betreffende de Tilburgse bezittingen van de familie Back.
    Helaas rust er copyright van de Stichting Cultureel Brabant op, dus ik kan je alleen doorgeven onder welke naam je naar het PDF kunt zoeken.

    1950_Smulders, Ferdinand_heemkundeartikelen.pdf

    Vriendelijke groet, Angelique Nota-Kruize.

    • Hallo Angelique,
      Bedankt voor de verwijzing, ik had die zelf bij mijn literatuuronderzoek ook al gevonden. Erg handig bij het onderzoek van de eerdere generaties inderdaad.

Leave a Reply to Rob Aalders Cancel reply

*