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Saturday, August 8, 2020

King Louis VIII Capet & Queen Blanche of Castile

 47277624. King Louis VIII Capet & 47277625. Queen Blanche of Castile

9/5/1187, Louis Capet born in Paris, France, s/o 94555248. King Philip II Augustus & 94555249. Isabelle of Hainaut.

3/4/1188, Blanche born in Palencia, Castile, d/o 47277578. King Alfonso VIII of Castile & 47277579. Queen Eleanor Plantagenet.

1190, Louis, Count of Artois, inherited from his mother.

1195, Notre-dame de Chartres destroyed by fire.

5/27/1199, John crowned king of England.

1199-1200, Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine traveled to Spain to retreive a granddaughter, d/o Eleanor, to be wed to King Philip’s son Louis. She chose Blanche of Castile [over her older sister Urraca apparently because it was believed she would be more acceptable to the French; but possibly because she appears to have also been highly intelligent.]

[––Louis & Blanche––]

5/23/1200, Louis married to Blanche in Normandy [an English possession] by the Archbishop of Bourges. [This was arranged by her uncle King John because France was under a papal interdict. King John had also agreed to Blanch being his heir if he died without legitimate children.]

1205, The marriage of Louis and Blanche consummated.

1207, Prince Louis was presented with a second redaction of Rigord’s ‘Gesta Philippi Augusti’. (S) Crusading as an Act of Vengence, Throop, 2011, P199.

1212, Blanche wrote a letter to her cousin Blanche of Navarre, Countess of Champagne, about the war in Spain in which her father was a major figure in the victory over a Muslim army. [Blanche had initially received this news in a letter from her sister Berengaria.]

4/25/1214, Blanche gave birth to future Louis IX [“Saint Louis”].

1215, Louis was sent by his father to attack [unsuccessfully] Toulouse [as part of the Albigensian crusade].

1215, Prince Louis was approached by a group of English barons headed by Geoffrey de Mandeville who offered support in the overthrow of King John of England.

1215, Prince Louis sent 140 knights to England to make plans with his English allies. [7000 soon followed.]

5/20/1216, Louis crossed to England in 10 warships, with 1200 knight and 900 troops. Louis quickly captured all the Cinque Ports except Dover, held by Hubert de Burgh. Louis captured the town of Lincoln, but not the castle.

6/2/1216, Louis proclaimed King in London. (S) A Primary History of Britain, Smith, 1873, P66.

6/14/1216, Louis captured Winchester, and controlled half of England.

10/18/1216, King John of England died; succeeded by Henry III, age 9.

1217, Louis returned to France to seek more support from his father – who refused. [Louis’ claim was through Blanche’s mother, the only surviving child of King Henry II. King John’s son Henry was only 10.]

4/23/1217, Louis sailed back to England.

5/20/1217, Louis’ forces, combined with loyal English barons, lost at the battle of Lincoln to William Marshall.

8/24/1217, Louis’ relief forces sailing to Dover were intercepted by the naval forces of Hubert de Burgh in the battle of Sandwich. The French troopships escaped, but the supply vessels and the commander, Eustace the Monk, were captured – Eustace was soon beheaded.

9/12/1217, For 10,000 marks and some land exchanges, Louis forfeited his claim to the English crown by the treaty at Kingston-on-Thames.

9/29/1217, Prince Louis left England from Dover. Before leaving he recovered his prisoners, and was absolved of the attack on King Henry by the papal legate Gualo.

11/1218, Louis took the crusader cross. (S) God’s War, Tyerman, 2006, P600.

5/1219, Pierre, count of Brittany, the count of Guines, and Guillaume des Roches, seneschal of Anjou, accompanied Prince Louis on crusade at the siege of Marmande, which they captured [5000 citizens were put to death].

7/1219, After failing to capture Toulouse, Louis returned home. (S) The Government of Philip Augustus, Baldwin, 1991, P338.

12/22/1220, By direction of the Pope, the prior of St Victor was in Paris to hear Blanche’s confession and commute the vows she made during an illness of her children into works of mercy.

7/1223, Louis was summoned to his ill father at Pacy-sur-Eure. [He took his son Louis with him.]

7/14/1223, Louis succeeded as King of France on the death of his father. Louis immediately laid claim to all English lands in France.

8/6/1223 at Reims, Louis crowned King of France and Blanche crowned Queen. Blanche’s older sister Berengere, and her husband Jean de Brienne, roi de Jerusalem, attended the coronation.

8/1223, Queen Ingebour’s charter in which the queen declares her dowry arrangements with her stepson, Louis VIII, particularly of her rights to the city of Orleans.

11/1/1223, Louis issued an ordinance prohibiting the recording of debts owed to Jews. (S) Jews of Medieval France, Taitz, 1994, P164.

4/1224, A 4-year truce between England and France expired.

1224, At Blanche’s request, Louis confirmed her dowery.

6/25/1224, From Tours, Louis invaded northern Poitou, lands of the Viscount of Thouars, an English feudatory. (S) Dawn of the Constitution, Ramsay, 1908, P38.

7/15/1224, Louis laid siege to La Rochelle [which fell on August 3rd].

1224, Louis then captured Perigord, Quercy, and Limousin from the English. [These were lands of Hugh X de Lusignan, married to the mother of Henry III of England. Hugh changed his allegiance to support Louis.]

8/1224, Pope Honorius III wrote to King Louis, reprimanding him for his attacks, and demanding an immediate truce. (S) Henry III of England, Weiler, 2006, P21.

6/1225, Marie de Ponthieu ceded some of her lands to King Louis VIII.

1225, Joan of Flanders paid Louis 20,000 livres for his support against a claimaint of her rule [who Louis had executed.]

12/1225, At the Council of Bourges, Louis convinced a papal legate to reject Raymond VII’s attempt to get his titles to lands in southwest France recognized.

1/1226, Louis again took the cross of a crusader.

4/1226, Louis signed the treaty of Melun which subordinated the counts of Flanders to the French crown; and by which Joan of Flanders agreed to pay 50,000 livres for the release of her husband.

6/1226, Louis traveled to Languedoc to oversee the attack on a castle of Raymond VII in the Cathar war. It was summer and the conditions were unhealthy. Louis caught a fever and decided to return home. [It was believed by many French barons that he was poisoned by Thibaut, Count of Champagne, who left at the end of his 40-day required service.]

10/26/1226, Louis detained Falkes de Breaute on his arrival in France from being exiled in England. [Falkes’ rebellion in England had allowed Louis to capture much of Poitou.] (S) History of England, Tout, 1905, P27.

11/8/1226, Louis, ‘the lion’, died of dysentery at Chateau Montpensier; buried at Saint Denis Basilica.


1226, King Henry III agreed to wed Yolanda, daughter of Peter Mauclerc, Count of Brittany. [Hoping the allicance would help him recover Normandy. Queen Blanche of France stopped the marriage by capturing Pierre Mauclerc.]

11/29/1226 at Rheims, Queen Blanche had her son Louis crowned king by the Bishop of Soissons. Blanche forbade Thibaut, Count of Champagne, from attending the service.

1226, By an assembly of Barons who were with Louis when he died; Blanche named regent of France during the minority of her son Louis. [Blanche was opposed by barons led by Engerrand de Couci. They claimed France was being governed by a Spanish woman and an Italian priest – Cardinal St. Ange in favor with Blanche. One of the demands with which Blanche had to comply was the release of the Count of Flanders.]

2/1227, Blanch assembled an army at Tours and marched into Brittany, the seat of her opposition.

2/20/1227, Thibaut, Count of Champagne, met Blanche’s army and arranged a peace agreement.

3/16/1227 at Vendome, The Count of La Marche and the Duke of Brittany renounced allegiance to England to an oath to King Louis IX; ending the baronial opposition.

1227, Blanche arranged an alliance with Emperor Frederick II, and made a truce with England.

1227, Blanche raised funds by a confiscatory tax on the Jews.

1227, Opposing barons led by the Philip, count of Boulogne [paternal uncle of Louis], tried unsuccessfully to capture Blanche and Louis returning to Paris from Orleans.

1228, Revolting barons accused Thibaut of poisoning Philip, count of Boulogne, so that he could rule France with Blanche.

4/1228, Blanche assembled her army in support of Thibaut and marched on Bellesme, considered impregnable. It was also unusual because it was still very cold. Blanche bivouacked with her troops and made sure there was plenty of wood for fires. After 2 assualts the fortress fell to Blanche, taking the Pierre Mauclere, duke of Brittany hostage. Blanche went on the capture Nantes and Acenis.

1229, After a tavern brawl in Paris, Blanch sent her archers in to restore order in which multiple clerics were killed. [In response the university went on strike. Blanche eventually agreed to compensation.]

1229-52, Queen Blanche received multiple letters from King Henry III of England.

1229, Blanche made agreements with Count Raymond VII of Toulouse, still in rebellion. [Blanche and Raymond were 1st cousins, their mothers, Eleanor and Joan of England, being sisters. Raymond’s daughter was pledged to Blanche’s son Alphonse.]

4/1230, King Henry III invaded Brittany with the help of Mauclerc, Count of Brittany, landing at Nantes. [By October King Henry returned to England.]

1230, Blanche, suspected of being pregnant by a Papal legate, had to show herself at court wearing only a shift.

9/1230, Blanche, in support of Thibaut, who was under siege by many barons, called a  council and arranged a peace which required Thibaut to take the cross for 5 years.

1230, Blanche accepted the surrender of Hugh, compte de la Marche.

5/1231, Queen Blanche was accompanied by Bishop Gauthier on her war in Brittany against Pierre Mauclerc and the Earl of Chester of England [This ended in a 3-year truce]. (S) Bread, Wine & Money, Williams, 1993, P168.

1232, Blanche sent Louis IX with a contingent to Beauvais to suppress a local distubance. 1500 citizens were banished and the bishop was required to reimburse the crown for expenses of the expedition.

1233, Blanche made agreements with Count Raymond VII of Toulouse, still in rebellion.

1234, Queen Blanche arranged for a dowery of 10,000 marks from Raymond, Count of Provence, for the marriage of his eldest daughter Marguerite to her son Louis. [Eventually becoming 2,000 marks and various castles in Provence.]

5/27/1234, Blanche’s son Louis married at Sens.

1234, Pope Gregory IX threatened King Louis with excommunication for his restrictions on clerical jurisdiction. This was avoided through intervention of Queen Blanche with a papal legate.

1235, Blanche’s regency ended with the majority of her son Louis.

1236, King Louis, his mother Blanche, and his wife Margaret attended the wedding of Margaret’s sister Eleanor to King Henry III of England at Westminster in London. (S) Chronicles of the Age of Chivalry, 2000, P58.

1236, Blanche founded the Cistercian abbey of Maubuisson near Pontoise.

1237, King Louis arranged for Blanche’s dower lands in Artois to be exchanged for lands close to Paris of his brother Robert.

1239, Blanche as Queen mother, daughter-in-law Queen Marguerite, and Ingebour of Denmark [step-mother of Louis VIII] rode at the head of the procession to celebrate the arrival of the crown of thorns.

1240, Blanche summoned Yehiel, a well-known Jewish scholar, to court to defend the texts of his faith and his writings refuting Christian arguments about the Bible. (S) Reading Medieval Religious Disputation, Eisenberg, 2008, P41.

6/24/1241, The entire French court was at Saumur in Anjou for the knighting of son Alphonse and his investiture as Count of Poitou. [Joinville, a witness to the event estimated 3000 knights in attendance.]

1242, Blanche made agreements with Count Raymond VII of Toulouse, still in rebellion.

12/1245, King Louis, Marguerite, Blanche and Louis’ brother Charles held a secret conclave with Pope Innocent at the monastery of Cluny, northwest of Lyon. The meeting delt with the marriage of Charles, and the Pope’s opposition to Emperor Frederick.

1248-9, Blanche again regent in France while her sons went on crusade [which she opposed. She accompanied the royal family as far as Marseilles.]

1248-9, a letter to Blanche: “To the very high, our lady and aunt, my lady Blanche, by the grace of God queen of France, Marie, by that same grace empress of Constantinople, greetings and commendations as to our very dear lady.”

1249, A letter to Blanche from her son Robert of Artois: “To his most excellent and dearest mother, Blanche, by the grace of God illustrious queen of France, count Robert of Artois her devoted son, greetings and the desire ready with filial love to do her will.” [On crusade in Damietta, Robert gives news of his brother, Charles of Anjou who has malaria, and whose wife Beatrice of Provence has just given birth to a son, but his main news is about the arrival of Louis’s forces and the city of Damietta falling to them.]

1250, A letter to Blanche from her son Louis IX on crusade: “To his most excellent and dearest lady and mother Blanche, by the grace of God illustrious queen of the French, Louis, by that same grace king of the French, greetings and ready with sincere love, pleased to do her will.”

1251, Blanche raised 11 wagons of silver to be used as ransom to free her captured son King Louis on crusade.

5/1251, The Pastoureaux, also known as the Crusade of Shepards, arrived in Paris and were greeted by Blanche. [Later, after causing riots in Paris and then moving to Orleans, Blanche ordered their excommunication.]

4/1252, Blanche wrote a letter of approval for Guy de Lusignan to have extended stay in England.

1252, In response to barbarous acts of the Chapter of Notre Dame de Paris, Blanche broke open their oppressive prison and reduced the power of the clergy over the peasantry.

11/26/1252, Blanche died in Paris [after visiting Melun]; buried at Nortre-Dame-la-Royale at Maubuisson near Pontoise [which she entered shortly before her death.]

(S) Epistolæ. (S) Memoires of the Queens of France, V1, Bush, 1843. (S) Four Queens, Goldstone, 2007. (S) The Capetians, Bradbury, 2007. (S) History of France, V1, Wright, 1856. (S) Women in the Middle Ages, Gies, 1991.

Children of Louis and Blanche:

i. Louis IX Capet (47281332), born 4/25/1214 in France.

ii. Robert of Artois (23639786), born 9/25/1216 in France.

iii. Saint Isabel of France, born 3/1225 in France.

6/10/1256, Isabel founded the Abbey of Lonchamp in Bois de Boulogne west of Paris; the Order of Poor Ladies of Saint Clare.

2/23/1270, Isabel died.

[After miracles were said to occurred at her grave, her body was exhumed 9 days later, then again in 1637.]

iv. Charles of Naples (23638812), born 3/21/1226 in France.

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