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Monday, September 7, 2020

Comte Guy of Thouars & Duchess Constance of Brittany

 39979510. Comte Guy of Thouars & 39979511. Duchess Constance of Brittany

12/19/1154, Henry II succeeded King Stephen of England.

~1160, Guy born in Thouars, France , s/o §§Geoffrey de Thouars & Aenor de Lusignan.

6/12/1161, Constance born in Brittany, France, d/o 79959022. Conan IV, duke of Brittany & 189118337. Margaret of Huntingdon.

1166, Margaret, mother of Constance, instigated a grant to the Cistercian abbey of Sawtry, Hertsfordshire, for the souls of herself, Duke Conan IV, and ‘our children.’ [This likely indicates a male heir had died leaving Constance as the heir.]

1166, King Henry and Duke Conan made an agreement to let his daughter Constance succeed to the duchy; seated at Rennes.

1167, King Louis VII of France protested the proposed marriage of Geoffrey Plantagenet and Constance to the Pope on the grounds of consanguinity, but the appeal was rejected.

1171, Constance’s father died.

1173, Guy’s father died, his brother Aimeri succeeding.

9/18/1180, Philip Augustus succeeded as King of France.

[––Constance & Geoffrey––]

7/1181, Constance 1st married Geoffrey Plantagenet, s/o King Henry II of England. Geoffrey adopted the designs of Conan IV’s seal and ducal coinage; and took the title “dux Britannie et comes Richmundie.” [Duke of Brittany and Earl of Richmond.]

1184, Geoffrey sent to Normandy as one of its custodians.

8/19/1186, Geoffrey Plantagenet died in a tournament in Paris, France; buried at Notre Dame. [Geoffrey’s son Arthur’s right to the throne of England would be usurped by Geoffrey’s younger brother (King) John.]

Aft. 1186, Constance styled herself ‘Conani comitis filia.’

Bef. 4/1187, at Nantes, Duchess Constance recorded a donation for the soul of her late husband Geoffrey.

[––Constance & Ranulph––]

2/3/1188, King Henry II of England married Ranulph, earl of Chester and viscount of the Avranchin, to Constance of Brittany.

11/3/1189, Richard I crowned king of England.

6/1191, Duchess Constance named in the testament of Maurice de Craon (39979516), seneschal of Brittany.

1193, Duchess Constance issued 2 charters attested by W. Ragot.

1194, Constance abdicated her ducal crown in favour of her son Arthur.

1196, Guy of Thouars [Guido frater Reymundi vicecomitis Thoarcensis] captured by King Philip at Aumale. King Richard had to pay 3000 silver marks for the ransom of his knights.

1196, Ranulph, 4th Earl of Chester, arrested his wife Constance of Brittany, widow of Geoffrey Plantagenet and mother of Arthur of Brittany. He shut her up in the castle of St. James in Normandy.

4/1/1197 at Tours, King Richard restored all of Duchess Constances’s lands and pardoned her barons. Constance agreed on behalf of her barons and knights to keep the peace. Once all the oaths were taken and the treaty recorded, Constance was to be set free.

1197, Constance was visited by her mother.

1198, Ranulph divorced and released Constance.


4/6/1199, King Richard died.

4/1199, Constance with son Arthur and a force of Bretons entered Maine and Anjou to take possession.

4/18/1199, Constance and her son Arthur were received at Angers to take possession. (S) The Scholar’s History of England, Ramsay, 1903, P378.

4/6/1199, King John succeeded Richard I as King of England. [Richard made his brother John his heir, but previously had named Arthur of Brittany, who was next in line.]

6/1199, King Philip met with Constance and Arthur at Le Mans, where Arthur did homage for Maine and Anjou; Philip offering to hold his castles for him.

[––Guy & Constance––]

By 10/1199, Guy married Constance, her 3rd.

11/1200 at Paris, Peter, son of Robert, count of Dreux, bound himself to hold to an agreement between King Philip and Guy of Thouars, count of Brittany.

3/1201, Guy of Thouars, brother of the Viscount of Thouars, recognized as count of Brittany. Eleanor of Aquitaine, mother of King John [and grandmother of Arthur of Brittany], summoned Guy and his brother to Fontrevault abbey to solicit their support for her son against King Philip.

1201, Duchess Constance founded the abbey of Villeneuve.

9/1201, Constantia Ducissa Britanniæ died after giving birth to twin girls.


5/1202, Guy of Thouars, William de l’Etang, seneschal of Poitou, and others captured Le Mans [Mont-Saint-Michel] and Angers [Avrenches – property of the Earl of Chester] for King Philip. Guy was then sent to attack castles on the western frontier between Pontorson and Mortain.

6/4/1202, Arthur did homage to King John for his English lands, Guy [Guidon de Toarc] was present.

7/1202, Arthur of Brittany did homage to King Philip for Brittany.

8/29/1202, Gui of Thouars styled “quondam comitem Britannie”.

4/1203, Guy of Thouars, late count of Brittany, met with King John; who confirmed the administrative measures he had taken in the honor of Richmond.

1203, At a gathering of prelates at Vannes, Guy of Thouars, Peter of Meulan, Hugh de Gournai, and others left allegiance of King John after the disappearance of Arthur of Brittany.

9/1203, Guy became regent of Brittany to his step-daughter on the death of her brother Arthur.

1203, All of Guy’s English lands were confiscated.

1203, Guy married 2nd Eustachie d’Argenton, Dame de Chemille, widow of William V, vicomte d’Aulnay. (S) FMG.

10/1203, King Philip, declaring that he did not know if Arthur was alive, issued a charter in favour of Guy of Thouars at Chateau Gaillard.

1204, Gui of Thouars, with an army of Bretons, supporting King Philip’s expedition into Normandy, took Mount St. Michael, Avranches, and the other fortresses in the area.

1206, King Philip completely conquered Brittany; disposed Guy as duke, but left him as regent for his daughter.

1206, Gui de Thouars supported the invasion of Brittany by King John.

4/13/1213, Guy died; buried at Chateau de Chemille; the body then moved in 1225 to Notre Dame abbey, Villeneuve, Nantes.

(S) The Charters of the Duchess Constance of Brittany, Everard, 1999. (S) History of England, V2, Hume. (S) Loss of Normandy, Powicke, 1999. (S) Scholars History of England, Ramsay, 1903. (S) Brittany and the Angevins, Everard, 2000.

Family notes:

·         Aenor de Lusignan likely d/o Hugh VIII de Lusignan & Burgundia de Racon.

·         Guy brother of Aimeri, viscount of Thouars, who controlled many castles in the north and west of Poitou.

·         A “Guy of Thouars” accompanied King Louis on crusade in 1147.

Child of Geoffrey and Constance:

i. Eleanor of Brittany, born 1182-84 in Brittany.

2/14/1192, Eleanor’s marriage to Frederick, son of Leopold V, duke of Austria, arranged by her uncle King Richard I of England. [Never finalized.]

1202, Eleanor, heiress of her brother, imprisoned by her uncle King John, originally at Corf castle.

1204, King Philip II demanded the release of Eleanor.

1206, Eleanor was moved to Bristol castle. [She would be moved multiple times.]

1208, The English bishops requested the release of Eleanor.

1209, Eleanor was joined by the daughters of King William of Scotland [her greatuncle] who had been sent as hostages to King John to guarantee fealty.

1213, King John declaring England a papal feif, Eleanor became a ward of Pope Innocent III.

1214, Eleanor accompanied King John on his expedition into France.

1216, King Henry III succeeded King John, even though Eleanor had a better claim.

1222, ‘Damosell de Bretagne’ transferred from Corfe castle to Gloucester castle.

1223-24, Eleanor moved to Marlborough castle.

3/1225, Eleanor at Bristol.

11/1237, Eleanor visited King Henry III at Woodstock.

8/10/1241, Eleanor died; buried at St. James, then at Amesbury abbey. [She spent 40 years as a prisoner.]

ii. Arthur of Brittany, born 3/29/1187 in Brittany.

1190, Arthur designated as heir-apparent to the crown of England by King Richard I because he was the son of Geoffrey, next in line after Richard.

1199, Arthur claimed the right to the crown of England on the death of King Richard. [Richard, on his death bed, designated his younger brother John as the heir.]

7/1201, Arthur of Brittany led a force in the Norman territory of King John, and was captured along with “Hugh le Brun”, viscount of Thouars, and several other knights. (S) Rigord’s Deeds of Phillip Augustus.

1202, King John refused King Philip’s summons to Paris as his vassal. The French court awarded his lands to his nephew Arthur of Brittany. King Philip attacked Norman territories capturing most of Brai.

7/1202, Arthur did homage to King Philip for Brittany.

8/1/1202, Arthur of Brittany, potential heir to the throne of England, imprisoned at Rouen by King John under the care of Robert de Vieuxpont. [Where Arthur was likely killed by King John.]

4/3/1203 at Rouen, King John killed Arthur of Brittany. (S) Antiquities of Shropshire, V2, Eyton, 1855, P212.

Children of Guy and Constance:

i. Alix of Brittany (19989755), born 9/5/1201 in Brittany.

ii. Catherine of Thouars, born 9/5/1201 in Brittany.

1212, Catherine married Andre, seigneur de Vitre.

1237-40, Catherine died.

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