Robert II of France
Robert II, called the Pious or the Wise, was King of the Franks from 996 until his death. The second reigning member of the House of Capet, he was born in Orléans to Hugh Capet, immediately after his own coronation, Roberts father Hugh began to push for the coronation of Robert. Lewis has observed, in tracing the phenomenon in this line of kings who lacked dynastic legitimacy, ralph Glaber, attributes Hughs request to his old age and inability to control the nobility. Robert was eventually crowned on 25 December 987, Robert had begun to take on active royal duties with his father in the early 990s. In 991, he helped his father prevent the French bishops from trekking to Mousson in the Kingdom of Germany for a synod called by Pope John XV and she was the widow of Arnulf II of Flanders, with whom she had two children. Robert divorced her within a year of his fathers death in 996 and he tried instead to marry Bertha, daughter of Conrad of Burgundy, around the time of his fathers death. She was a widow of Odo I of Blois, but was Roberts cousin, for reasons of consanguinity, Pope Gregory V refused to sanction the marriage, and Robert was excommunicated.
After long negotiations with Gregorys successor, Sylvester II, the marriage was annulled, finally, in 1001, Robert entered into his final and longest-lasting marriage to Constance of Arles, the daughter of William I of Provence. Her southern customs and entourage were regarded with suspicion at court, after his companion Hugh of Beauvais urged the king to repudiate her as well, knights of her kinsman Fulk III, Count of Anjou had Beauvais murdered. The king and Bertha went to Rome to ask Pope Sergius IV for an annulment so they could remarry, after this was refused, he went back to Constance and fathered several children by her. Her ambition alienated the chroniclers of her day, who blamed her for several of the kings decisions and Robert remained married until his death in 1031. Robert was a devout Catholic, hence his sobriquet the Pious and he was musically inclined, being a composer and poet, and made his palace a place of religious seclusion where he conducted the matins and vespers in his royal robes.
Roberts reputation for piety resulted from his lack of toleration for heretics and he is credited with advocating forced conversions of local Jewry. He supported riots against the Jews of Orléans who were accused of conspiring to destroy the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, Robert reinstated the Roman imperial custom of burning heretics at the stake. In 1003, his invasion of the Duchy of Burgundy was thwarted, the pious Robert made few friends and many enemies, including his own sons, Hugh and Robert. They turned against their father in a war over power. Hugh died in revolt in 1025, in a conflict with Henry and the younger Robert, King Roberts army was defeated, and he retreated to Beaugency outside Paris, his capital. He died in the middle of the war with his sons on 20 July 1031 at Melun and he was interred with Constance in Saint Denis Basilica and succeeded by his son Henry, in both France and Burgundy
Hedwig of Saxony
Hedwige of Saxony, a member of the Ottonian dynasty, was Duchess consort of the Franks by her marriage to the Robertian duke Hugh the Great, a descendant of Emperor Charlemagne. Upon her husbands death in 956, she acted as a regent during the minority of their son Hugh Capet, the founder of the Elder House of Capet. After her brother Otto I came to power in 936, an alliance and marriage was arranged with the West Frankish duke Hugh the Great and they married probably in May 937. With Hugh, Hedwig had the children, Beatrice married Frederick I. Hugh Capet, who was crowned King of France in 987, emma of Paris, who married Duke Richard I of Normandy in 960. Otto, Duke of Burgundy Henry I, Duke of Burgundy When Hedwigs husband died in 956, although Hugh inherited his fathers estates, he did not rule independently from the beginning. Along with her brother, Archbishop Bruno, Hedwig acted as Hughs regent, Bruno held guardianship over his nephew King Lothair of France, son of his sister Gerberga, and temporarily raised to one of the most powerful nobles in West Francia.
Hedwig backed her brother in his conflict with Count Reginar III of Hainaut, Hedwig is last mentioned in 958 by the West Frankish chronicler Flodoard of Reims and may have died soonafter, a 965 entry by Sigebert of Gembloux seems doubtful. W. Glocker, Die Verwandten der Ottonen und ihre Bedeutung in der Politik, studien zur Familienpolitik und zur Genealogie des sächsischen Kaiserhauses. J. Michelet, History of France, Vol. I, P. Riché, The Carolingians, A Family Who Forged Europe, trans. Medieval Lands Project Hadwig von Sachsen
Henry the Fowler
Henry the Fowler was the duke of Saxony from 912 and the elected king of East Francia from 919 until his death in 936. An avid hunter, he obtained the epithet the Fowler because he was fixing his birding nets when messengers arrived to inform him that he was to be king. By his death in July 936 Henry had prevented collapse of royal power, as had happened in West Francia, Henry died on July 2,936 in his royal palace in Memleben, one of his favourite places. He was buried at Quedlinburg Abbey, established by his wife Matilda in his honor, in 906 he married Hatheburg von Merseburg, daughter of the Saxon count Erwin. She had previously been a nun, the marriage was annulled in 909 because her vows as a nun were deemed by the church to remain valid. She had already given birth to Henrys son Thankmar, the annulment placed a question mark over Thankmars legitimacy. Later that year he married Matilda, daughter of Dietrich of Ringelheim, Matilda bore him three sons, one called Otto, and two daughters and Gerberga, and founded many religious institutions, including the Quedlinburg Abbey where Henry is buried.
Henry became Duke of Saxony after his fathers death in 912, an able ruler, he continued to strengthen the position of his duchy within the weakening kingdom of East Francia, and was frequently in conflict with his neighbors to the South in Duchy of Franconia. On December 23,918 Conrad I, king of East Francia and Franconian duke, although Henry had rebelled against Conrad I between 912 and 915 over the lands in Thuringia, Conrad recommended Henry as his successor. Kingship now changed from Franks to Saxons, who had suffered greatly during the conquests of Charlemagne and were proud of their identity, Henry, as Saxon, was the first non-Frank on the throne. Conrads choice was conveyed by his brother, duke Eberhard III of Franconia at the Imperial Diet of Fritzlar in 919, the assembled Franconian and Saxon nobles elected Henry to be king with other regional dukes not participating in election. Henry, who was elected to kingship by only Saxons and Franconians at Fritzlar, had to subdue other dukes, Duke Arnulf of Bavaria did not submit until Henry defeated him in two campaigns in 921.
Henry besieged his residence at Ratisbon and forced Arnulf into submission, Arnulf had crowned himself as king of Bavaria in 919, but in 921 renounced crown and submitted to Henry while maintaining large autonomy and the right to mint his own coins. Duke Burchard II of Swabia soon swore fealty to the new King, Henry was too weak to impose absolutist rule, and regarded his kingdom as a confederation of stem duchies rather than as a feudal monarchy and saw himself as primus inter pares. In 920 king of West Francia Charles the Simple invaded and marched as far as Pfeddersheim near Worms, on November 7,921, Henry and Charles met and concluded a treaty of friendship. Henry saw an opportunity to wrest Lotharingia when a war over royal succession began in West Francia after coronation of king Robert I. In 923 Henry crossed the Rhine twice, capturing a part of the duchy. The eastern part of Lotharingia was left in Henrys possession until October 924, in 925 duke Gilbert of Lotharingia rebelled
Baldwin V, Count of Flanders
Baldwin V of Flanders was Count of Flanders from 1035 until his death. He was the son of Baldwin IV, Count of Flanders, during a long war as an ally of Godfrey the Bearded, Duke of Lorraine, against the Holy Roman Emperor Henry III, he initially lost Valenciennes to Herman, Count of Mons. Upon the death of Henry III this marriage was acknowledged by treaty by Agnes de Poitou, Baldwin V played host to a grateful dowager queen Emma of England, during her enforced exile, at Bruges. He supplied armed security guards, comprising a band of minstrels, Bruges was a bustling commercial centre, and Emma fittingly grateful to the citizens. She dispensed generously to the poor, making contact with the monastery of Saint Bertin at St Omer, from 1060 to 1067 Baldwin was the co-Regent with Anne of Kiev for his nephew-by-marriage Philip I of France, indicating the importance he had acquired in international politics. As Count of Maine, Baldwin supported the King of France in most affairs, but he was father-in-law to William of Normandy, who had married his daughter Matilda.
Flanders played a role in Edward the Confessors foreign policy. Baldwins half-sister had married Earl Godwins third son, the half-Viking Godwinsons had spent their exile in Dublin, at a time William of Normandy was fiercely defending his duchy. It is unlikely however that Baldwin intervened to prevent the invasion plans of England. By 1066, Baldwin was an old man, and died the following year, Baldwin and Adèle are known to have had three children, Baldwin VI, 1030–1070 Matilda, c. 1031–1083 who married William the Conqueror Robert I of Flanders, c, but this belief is not accepted by the other historians, including Charles Cawley of Medieval Lands and Stewart Baldwin of The Henry Project. D. Sir Frank Stenton, Anglo-Saxon England, The Oxford History of England Heather J. Tanner, Families and Allies, Boulogne and Politics in Northern France and England, c. 879-1160, ISBN 978-9004132436 Harriet H. Wood, The Battle of Hastings, The Fall of Anglo-Saxon England, ISBN 978-1843548072
Count of Flanders
The Count of Flanders was the ruler or sub-ruler of the county of Flanders, beginning in the 9th century. The title was held for a time by the Holy Roman Emperor, during the French Revolution in 1790, the county of Flanders was annexed to France and the peerage ceased to exist. In the 19th century, the title was appropriated by Belgium, the most recent holder died in 1983. Although the early rulers, starting with Arnulf I, were referred to as margraves or marquesses. Since then, the rulers of Flanders have only referred to as Counts. The Counts of Flanders enlarged their estate through a series of diplomatic marriages, the counties of Hainaut, Namur, Béthune, Auxerre, Rethel and Artois were all acquired in this manner. However, the County of Flanders suffered the fate in turn. As a result of the marriage of Countess Margaret III with Philip II, Duke of Burgundy, the county, the Counts of Flanders were associated with the Duchy of Brittany prior to its union with France. In c 1323, the daughter of Arthur II, Duke of Brittany, joanna of Flanders, the granddaughter of Count Robert III and daughter of his son, Count Louis I, married John Montfort.
It was through this alliance that the Duchy of Brittany was eventually joined to the throne of France, baldwin I Iron Arm, married Judith and was granted lands and honours, which would evolve into the County of Flanders. In 1246, King Louis IX of France awarded Flanders to William, when the Habsburg empire was divided among the heirs of Charles V, the Low Countries, including Flanders, went to Philip II of Spain, of the Spanish branch of the House of Habsburg. The fief was claimed by the House of Habsburg and the House of Bourbon, in 1713, the Treaty of Utrecht settled the succession and the County of Flanders went to the Austrian branch of the House of Habsburg. The Emperor Francis II relinquished his claim to the Low Countries in the Treaty of Campo Formio of 1797, in modern times, from 1840 onward, the substantive title Count of Flanders has been granted to two younger sons of the Kings of the Belgians. The second of these died in 1983, and the title not be conferred again. It is a title which is only nominally and ceremonially used.
Genealogy of the counts of Flanders
Richard III, Duke of Normandy
Not to be confused with Richard III Richard III was the eldest son of Richard II who died in 1026. Richards short reign lasted less than a year and it opened with a revolt by his brother and finished in his death by unknown causes. When Richard II died in August 1026, his eldest son, shortly after his reign began his brother Robert, discontented with his province of Hiemois on the border of Normandy, revolted against his brother. He laid siege to the town of Falaise, but was brought to heel by Richard who captured him. No sooner had Richard disbanded his army and returned to Rouen, the duchy passed to his younger brother Robert I. In January 1027 he was married to Adela, of a noble lineage and she is usually identified with Adela, a younger daughter of King Robert II of France, who after Richards death 6 August 1027, remarried to Baldwin V, Count of Flanders. Richards marriage to Adela was childless, by an unknown woman, he had two children, Alice/Alix, who married Ranulph, Viscount of Bayeux Nicolas, Monk at Fecamp, Abbot of Saint-Ouen, Rouen
Matilda of Ringelheim
Saint Matilda was Duchess of Saxony from 912 and German queen from 919 by her marriage with Henry the Fowler, the first king of the Ottonian dynasty. Upon her husbands death in 936, she founded Quedlinburg Abbey to commemorate the late king, Matilda lived to see Western Imperial rule restored when her eldest son Otto was crowned Holy Roman Emperor in 962. Her surname refers to Ringelheim, where her comital Immedinger relatives established a nunnery about 940, the details of St. Matilda was born in Enger near Herford, in the Westphalian part of the German stem duchy of Saxony. She was the daughter of the local count Dietrich and his wife Reinhild, Matildas biographers traced her ancestry back to the legendary Saxon leader Widukind, who presumably was buried in the Enger church. Her sister Frederuna married Count Wichmann the Elder, a member of the Billung dynasty, by the conjugal union, the Ottonian dynasty considerably enlarged their possessions in the western parts of Saxony. Henrys previous marriage with Hatheburg of Merseburg was annulled and they were married at the Pfalz of Wallhausen in 909.
As the eldest surviving son, Henry succeeded his father as Duke of Saxony in 912, in 929 Matilda received the estates of Quedlinburg, Pöhlde, Nordhausen in Thuringia and Duderstadt as her wittum. After her husband died in 936 at Memleben and her son, now King Otto I of East Francia, the abbey was a convent of noble canonesses, where her granddaughter, named Matilda, became abbess in 966. At first the Queen Mother remained at the court of her son, during quarrels between the new king and his rebellious brother Henry, Matilda seemed to have favoured her younger son, as he was born after his fathers accession to the throne. In turn, a cabal of royal advisors is reported to have accused her of decreasing the royal treasury in order to pay for her charitable activities. Matilda died after long illness on 14 March 968 in Quedlinburg Abbey, outliving her husband by 32 years and her and Henrys mortal remains are buried in the crypt of St. Servatius Church in Quedlinburg. Medieval chroniclers like Liutprand of Cremona and Thietmar of Merseburg celebrated Matilda for her devotion to prayer and her first biographer depicted her leaving her husbands side in the middle of the night and sneaking off to church to pray.
St. Matilda founded many religious institutions, including the canonry of Quedlinburg and she founded the convents of St. Wigbert in Quedlinburg, in Pöhlde and Nordhausen, likely the source of at least one of her vitae. She was canonized, with her cult largely confined to Saxony, St. Matildas feast day according to the regional German calendar of saints is 14 March. In 1856–58 the Neo-Gothic St. Matildas Church was erected in Quedlinburg, another St. Matildas Church was consecrated in Laatzen, Lower Saxony in 1938. The Melkite Greek Catholic community of Aleppo built a dedicated to Saint Matilda in 1964. There is a glass window dedicated to Saint Matilda in the parish church of Coole. Widukind, Res gestae Saxonicae, ed. Paul Hirsch and H. -E, Die Sachsengeschichte des Widukind von Korvei
Hugh Capet was the first King of the Franks of the House of Capet from his election in 987 until his death. He succeeded the last Carolingian king, Louis V, the son of Hugh the Great, Duke of the Franks, and Hedwige of Saxony, daughter of the German king Henry the Fowler, Hugh was born in 941. Hugh Capet was born into a well-connected and powerful family with ties to the royal houses of France. Through his mother, Hugh was the nephew to Otto I, Holy Roman Emperor, Henry I, Duke of Bavaria, Bruno the Great, Archbishop of Cologne, and finally, Gerberga of Saxony, Queen of France. Gerberga was the wife of Louis IV, King of France and mother of Lothair of France and Charles and his paternal family, the Robertians, were powerful landowners in the Île-de-France. His grandfather had been King Robert I, King Odo was his granduncle and King Rudolph was his uncle by affinity. Hughs paternal grandmother was a descendant of Charlemagne, after the end of the ninth century, the descendants of Robert the Strong became indispensable in carrying out royal policies.
As Carolingian power failed, the nobles of West Francia began to assert that the monarchy was elective, not hereditary. Robert I, Hugh the Greats father, was succeeded as King of the Franks by his son-in-law, when Rudolph died in 936, Hugh the Great had to decide whether he ought to claim the throne for himself. To block his rivals, Hugh the Great brought Louis dOutremer and this maneuver allowed Hugh to become the most powerful person in France in the first half of the tenth century. Once in power, Louis IV granted him the title of dux Francorum, Louis officially declared Hugh the second after us in all our kingdoms. Hugh gained power when Herbert II of Vermandois died in 943, Hugh the Great came to dominate a wide swath of central France, from Orléans and Senlis to Auxerre and Sens, while the king was rather confined to the area northeast of Paris. The realm in which Hugh grew up, and of which he would one day be king, Hughs predecessors did not call themselves kings of France, and that title was not used by his successors until the time of his descendant, Philip II.
Kings ruled as rex Francorum, the remaining in use until 1190 The lands they ruled comprised only a small part of the former Carolingian Empire. The eastern Frankish lands, the Holy Roman Empire, were ruled by the Ottonian dynasty, represented by Hughs first cousin Otto II and by Ottos son, Otto III. The lands south of the river Loire had largely ceased to be part of the West Francia kingdom in the years after Charles the Simple was deposed in 922. Both the Duchy of Normandy and the Duchy of Burgundy were largely independent, in 956, when his father Hugh the Great died, the eldest son, was about fifteen years old and had two younger brothers. In 954, Otto I appointed his brother Bruno, Archbishop of Cologne and Duke of Lorraine, as guardian of Lothair, in 956, Otto gave him the same role over Hugh and the Robertian principality
In its governance and religious observance a collegiate church is similar to a cathedral, although a collegiate church is not the seat of a bishop and has no diocesan responsibilities. Collegiate churches were supported by extensive lands held by the church. They commonly provide distinct spaces for congregational worship and for the offices of their clerical community. In England these churches were termed minsters, from the Latin monasterium, in less affluent foundations, the pooled endowments of the community were apportioned between the canons, such canons being termed portioners. Both prebendaries and portioners tended in this period to abandon communal living, because each prebend provided a discrete source of income, in the medieval period prebendaries increasingly tended to be non-resident, paying a vicar to undertake divine service in their place. One particular development of the chantry college principle was the establishment in university cities of collegiate foundations in which the fellows were graduate academics, local parish churches were appropriated to these foundations, thereby initially acquiring collegiate status.
This has influenced the design of churches in that the singing choir is seen as representing the idea of a college. The Westminster model of parliamentary seating arrangement arose from Parliaments use of the collegiate St Stephens Chapel Westminster for its sittings, until Westminster Palace burned down in 1834. Three traditional collegiate churches have survived in England since the Middle Ages, at Westminster Abbey in London, St Georges Chapel of Windsor Castle and St Endellions Church, the idea of a collegiate church has continued to develop a contemporary equivalent. Two different examples of collegiate churches in America today are The Collegiate Church of New York City. St. Pauls Collegiate Church at Storrs features contemporary architecture reflecting traditional collegiate church architecture, unlike most historical collegiate churches, this is a non-denominational, evangelical church. According to church leaders, they chose the name collegiate to emphasize the priesthood of all believers, in the Catholic Church, most cathedrals possess a cathedral chapter and are thus collegiate churches.
The number of collegiate chapters other than those of cathedrals has been reduced compared to times past. Three of them are in Rome, the two basilicas of St. Peter and St. Mary Major, together with the Basilica St. Maria ad Martyres. Elsewhere, three can be found in Germany, to wit, St. Martins Church, Landshut and Jacob in Altötting and St. Remigius in Borken. In Portugal the one example that survives is that of the ancient Real Colegiada of Nossa Senhora da Oliveira in Guimarães, one collegiate church can be found in the Czech Republic, Sts. In pre-Reformation England there were usually a number of churches in each diocese. They were mostly abolished during the reign of Edward VI in 1547, as part of the Reformation, almost all continue to serve as parish churches with a resident rector, vicar or curate
William the Conqueror
William I, usually known as William the Conqueror and sometimes William the Bastard, was the first Norman King of England, reigning from 1066 until his death in 1087. A descendant of Rollo, he was Duke of Normandy from 1035 onward, after a long struggle to establish his power, by 1060 his hold on Normandy was secure, and he launched the Norman conquest of England six years later. The rest of his life was marked by struggles to consolidate his hold over England and his continental lands, William was the son of the unmarried Robert I, Duke of Normandy, by Roberts mistress Herleva. His illegitimate status and his youth caused some difficulties for him after he succeeded his father, during his childhood and adolescence, members of the Norman aristocracy battled each other, both for control of the child duke and for their own ends. In 1047 William was able to quash a rebellion and begin to establish his authority over the duchy and his marriage in the 1050s to Matilda of Flanders provided him with a powerful ally in the neighbouring county of Flanders.
By the time of his marriage, William was able to arrange the appointments of his supporters as bishops and his consolidation of power allowed him to expand his horizons, and by 1062 William was able to secure control of the neighbouring county of Maine. In the 1050s and early 1060s William became a contender for the throne of England, held by the childless Edward the Confessor, his first cousin once removed. There were other claimants, including the powerful English earl Harold Godwinson. William argued that Edward had previously promised the throne to him, William built a large fleet and invaded England in September 1066, decisively defeating and killing Harold at the Battle of Hastings on 14 October 1066. After further military efforts William was crowned king on Christmas Day 1066 and he made arrangements for the governance of England in early 1067 before returning to Normandy. Several unsuccessful rebellions followed, but by 1075 Williams hold on England was mostly secure, Williams final years were marked by difficulties in his continental domains, troubles with his eldest son, and threatened invasions of England by the Danes.
In 1086 William ordered the compilation of the Domesday Book, a listing all the landholders in England along with their holdings. William died in September 1087 while leading a campaign in northern France and his reign in England was marked by the construction of castles, the settling of a new Norman nobility on the land, and change in the composition of the English clergy. He did not try to integrate his various domains into one empire, Williams lands were divided after his death, Normandy went to his eldest son, Robert Curthose, and his second surviving son, William Rufus, received England. Norsemen first began raiding in what became Normandy in the late 8th century, permanent Scandinavian settlement occurred before 911, when Rollo, one of the Viking leaders, and King Charles the Simple of France reached an agreement surrendering the county of Rouen to Rollo. The lands around Rouen became the core of the duchy of Normandy. Normandy may have used as a base when Scandinavian attacks on England were renewed at the end of the 10th century.
In an effort to improve matters, King Æthelred the Unready took Emma of Normandy, sister of Duke Richard II, as his second wife in 1002