The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be largely honorary, and vary from country to country and era to era. There is often a variety of ranks within the noble class. g, san Marino and the Vatican City in Europe. Hereditary titles often distinguish nobles from non-nobles, although in many nations most of the nobility have been un-titled, some countries have had non-hereditary nobility, such as the Empire of Brazil. The term derives from Latin nobilitas, the noun of the adjective nobilis. In modern usage, nobility is applied to the highest social class in pre-modern societies and it rapidly came to be seen as a hereditary caste, sometimes associated with a right to bear a hereditary title and, for example in pre-revolutionary France, enjoying fiscal and other privileges. Nobility is a historical and often legal notion, differing from high socio-economic status in that the latter is based on income. Being wealthy or influential cannot, ipso facto, make one noble, various republics, including former Iron Curtain countries, Greece and Austria have expressly abolished the conferral and use of titles of nobility for their citizens.
Not all of the benefits of nobility derived from noble status per se, usually privileges were granted or recognised by the monarch in association with possession of a specific title, office or estate. Most nobles wealth derived from one or more estates, large or small and it included infrastructure such as castle and mill to which local peasants were allowed some access, although often at a price. Nobles were expected to live nobly, that is, from the proceeds of these possessions, work involving manual labour or subordination to those of lower rank was either forbidden or frowned upon socially. In some countries, the lord could impose restrictions on such a commoners movements. Nobles exclusively enjoyed the privilege of hunting, in France, nobles were exempt from paying the taille, the major direct tax. In some parts of Europe the right of war long remained the privilege of every noble. During the early Renaissance, duelling established the status of a respectable gentleman, Nobility came to be associated with social rather than legal privilege, expressed in a general expectation of deference from those of lower rank.
By the 21st century even that deference had become increasingly minimised, in France, a seigneurie might include one or more manors surrounded by land and villages subject to a nobles prerogatives and disposition. Seigneuries could be bought, sold or mortgaged, if erected by the crown into, e. g. a barony or countship, it became legally entailed for a specific family, which could use it as their title. Yet most French nobles were untitled, in other parts of Europe, sovereign rulers arrogated to themselves the exclusive prerogative to act as fons honorum within their realms. Nobility might be inherited or conferred by a fons honorum
Peter II of Courtenay
Peter, Peter II of Courtenay, was emperor of the Latin Empire of Constantinople from 1216 to 1217. Peter II was a son of Peter I of Courtenay, the youngest son of Louis VI of France and his mother was Elisabeth de Courtenay, daughter of Renaud de Courtenay and Hawise du Donjon. Peter first married Agnes I, via whom he obtained the three counties of Nevers and Tonnerre. He took for his wife, Yolanda of Flanders, a sister of Baldwin and Henry of Flanders. Peter accompanied his cousin, King Philip Augustus, on the crusade of 1190 and fought in the Albigensian Crusade in 1209 and 1211 and he was present at the Battle of Bouvines in 1214. On the journey he was seized by the despot of Epirus, Theodore Komnenos Doukas, Peter thus never governed his empire, however, was ruled for a time by his wife, who had succeeded in reaching Constantinople. Two of his sons and Baldwin, in turn emperors of the Latin Empire of Constantinople, by his first wife Agnes I, Countess of Nevers he had one child, Matilda I, Countess of Nevers.
This article incorporates text from a now in the public domain, Hugh
County of Namur
Namur was a county of the Carolingian and Holy Roman Empire in the Low Countries. Its territories largely correspond with the present-day Belgian arrondissement Namur plus the northwestern part of the arrondissement Dinant, the city of Namur most likely arose around the Champeau, a rocky hill between the Sambre and the Meuse. Numerous prehistoric flint weapons have been found in the area, during Roman times the region around Namur was first mentioned in Julius Caesars Commentarii de Bello Gallico in the second half of the 1st century BC. In Caesars wars the Roman legions conquered numerous Belgic cities and settlements, after this defeat the Belgae and their territory were incorporated into the Roman Empire. The county of Namur was first listed as part of the Lommegau in the year 832 in a document by Louis the Pious, in 992, Emperor Otto III titles Albert I count of Namur for the first time. The first count of note was Albert III, who acquired wardship over the prince-abbacy of Stavelot-Malmédy, until the start of the 12th century, Namur was threatened by its powerful neighbours Brabant, Hainaut and Liège.
Important parts of the county were annexed, the city of Dinant, for example, from the 12th century on, the counts of Namur managed to more or less compensate for the losses they had suffered. Count Godfrey, for example, acquired the county of Longwy, the last important figure from the first house that ruled Namur was Henry I. Henry I inherited the counties of Durbuy, La Roche-en-Ardenne and Luxembourg, after Henrys death, a fierce succession war broke out between Baldwin V, Count of Hainaut, and Henrys daughter Ermesinde. Baldwin V eventually received the county of Namur while Ermesine received Luxembourg, the situation remained more or less stable until 1263. In this year, the count of Namur, Baldwin II of Courtenay, sold his county to the count of Flanders, the house of Dampierre would rule until 1421, when the county of Namur was sold to the Burgundian duke Philip the Good. After the county of Namur was bought by Philip the Good, he integrated it into a territorial and political union. From the 15th century on, the Southern Netherlands were ruled by the Habsburgs, under their new rule, the military importance of the city of Namur steadily grew.
The Burgundians and Habsburgs strengthened the city and built new walls around it, during the 16th and 17th centuries the city became an important military stronghold, and was repeatedly besieged for this reason. During the Spanish period, Namur received a bishoprics seat, the Spanish king Philip II wanted to turn Namur into a catholic bastion as a bulwark against the rise of Calvinism. Thus Philip II required several religious orders to establish themselves in Namur, in consequence the city gained a specific catholic character. Philip II managed to make considerable reïnforcements to the Citadel of Namur, in 1577, Philip II sent Don Juan of Austria to the Netherlands as the new governor. In Namur, Don Juan received Margaret of Valois, and organised a magnificent celebration in her honor, Namur has had a crucial military role throughout history
Valenciennes is a commune in the Nord department in northern France. It lies on the Scheldt river, although the city and region experienced a steady population decline between 1975 and 1990, it has since rebounded. The 1999 census recorded that the population of the commune of Valenciennes was 41,278, Valenciennes is first mentioned in 693 in a legal document written by Clovis II. In the 843 Treaty of Verdun, it was made a city between Neustria and the Austrasia. Later in the 9th century the region was overrun by the Normans, in 923 it passed to the Duchy of Lower Lotharingia dependent on the Holy Roman Empire. Once the Empire of the Franks was established, the city began to develop, under the Ottonian emperors, Valenciennes became the centre of marches on the border of the Empire. In 1008, a famine brought the Plague. According to the tradition, the Virgin Mary held a cordon around the city which. Since then, every year at that time, the Valenciennois used to walk around the 14 kilometres road round the town, many Counts succeeded, first as Margraves of Valenciennes and from 1070 as counts of Hainaut.
In 1285, the currency of Hainaut was replaced by the currency of France, Valenciennes was full of activity, with numerous corporations, and outside its walls a large number of convents developed, like that of the Dominicans. In the 14th century, the Tower of Dodenne was built by Albert of Bavaria, where even today, in the 15th century, the County of Hainault, of which Valenciennes is part, was re-attached to Burgundy, losing its autonomy. On the Journée des Mals Brûlés in 1562, a mob freed some Protestants condemned to die at the stake, in the wave of iconoclastic attacks called the Beeldenstorm that swept the Low Countries in the summer of 1566, the city was the furthest south to see an attack. In 1576, when for a time the Southern Netherlands joined the revolt, however, in 1580, Alexander Farnese, Duke of Parma took Valenciennes and Protestantism was eradicated there. Hereafter, Valenciennes remained under Spanish protection, no longer involved in fighting of the Eighty Years War. With its manufacturers of wool and fine linens, the city was able to economically independent.
In 1591, the Jesuits built a school and the foundations of a church of Sainte-Croix, in 1611, the façade of the town hall was completely rebuilt in magnificent Renaissance style. In the seventeenth century the Scheldt was channelled between Cambrai and Valenciennes, benefitting Valenciennes wool and fine arts, to use up flax yarn, women began to make the famous Valenciennes lace. The French army laid siege to the city in 1656, defending the city, Albert de Merode, marquis de Trélon was injured during a sortie on horseback, died as a result of his injuries and was buried in the Church of St. Paul
Virtual International Authority File
The Virtual International Authority File is an international authority file. It is a joint project of national libraries and operated by the Online Computer Library Center. The project was initiated by the US Library of Congress, the German National Library, the National Library of France joined the project on October 5,2007. The project transitions to a service of the OCLC on April 4,2012, the aim is to link the national authority files to a single virtual authority file. In this file, identical records from the different data sets are linked together, a VIAF record receives a standard data number, contains the primary see and see records from the original records, and refers to the original authority records. The data are available online and are available for research and data exchange. Reciprocal updating uses the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting protocol, the file numbers are being added to Wikipedia biographical articles and are incorporated into Wikidata. VIAFs clustering algorithm is run every month, as more data are added from participating libraries, clusters of authority records may coalesce or split, leading to some fluctuation in the VIAF identifier of certain authority records
Michael I Komnenos Doukas
1170, Michael was a descendant of Alexios I Komnenos and a cousin of emperors Isaac II Angelos and Alexios III Angelos. He began his career in 1190, as a hostage to the Third Crusade. During the latter tenure he rebelled against Alexios III but was defeated and forced to flee to the Seljuk Turks, in the aftermath of the sack of Constantinople by the Fourth Crusade in 1204, he attached himself to Boniface of Montferrat. Soon, however, he abandoned the Crusader leader and went to Epirus, Michaels domain in Epirus became a refuge and centre of resistance of the Greeks against the Latin Crusaders. In the meantime, his rule received a boost in legitimacy when he ransomed the deposed Alexios III from captivity, according to chroniclers, Alexios III conferred the hereditary rule of Epirus to Michael and his descendants. By 1210, Michael was secure enough to launch an attack against the Latin Kingdom of Thessalonica, repelled by the intervention of the Latin Emperor Henry of Flanders, Michael quickly switched sides and joined the Latins to prevent the city from falling into Bulgarian hands.
In 1212, he conquered most of Thessaly from the Lombard lords of Thessalonica, at about the same time, his troops briefly took over the Lordship of Salona. He went on to recover Dyrrhachium and the island of Corfu from the Venetians in 1213–14 and he was assassinated soon after in his sleep, and was succeeded by his half-brother Theodore Komnenos Doukas. Michael was the son of the sebastokrator John Doukas. His paternal grandparents were Constantine Angelos and Theodora, a daughter of Emperor Alexios I Komnenos, Michaels uncle, was the father of the future emperors Isaac II Angelos and Alexios III Angelos, who were thus Michaels first cousins. Despite this kinship, he never used the surname Angelos, which has been applied by modern scholars to Michael. The only medieval sources to use the surname Angelos to refer to Michael were pro-Palaiologos historians hostile to him and it is unknown when Michael was born, the only relevant information is the statement of Niketas Choniates that he was a young man in 1201.
The Greek scholar Konstantinos Varzos places his birth approximately in 1170 and he went on to serve as governor of the theme of Mylasa and Melanoudion in Asia Minor during the last years of Isaac IIs first reign, with the rank of pansebastos sebastos. Alexios III re-appointed him to the province, probably in 1200. Demetrios Polemis, in his study on the Doukas family, reports that he was reappointed to the post by Alexios IV, but as Varzos remarks, in early 1201, for unknown reasons, Michael rose in revolt against the emperor. Alexios III campaigned against him in the summer 1201 and defeated him, forcing Michael to seek refuge at the court of the Seljuk Turk Sultan of Rûm, in his service he led Turkish raids into Byzantine territory around the Maeander River valley. The process of Michaels establishment in Epirus is obscure, when the local inhabitants rose in revolt against him, Senachereim called upon Michael for aid. Michael rushed to Nicopolis, but not before the locals had killed Senachereim, after that, himself widowed, took Senachereims widow as his wife and succeeded him as governor
Henry of Flanders
Henry was the second emperor of the Latin Empire of Constantinople. He was a son of Baldwin V, Count of Hainaut. Having joined the Fourth Crusade in about 1201, he distinguished himself at the sieges of Constantinople and he soon became prominent among the princes of the new Latin Empire. He was crowned 20 August 1206, upon Henrys ascension as Latin Emperor, the Lombard nobles of the Kingdom of Thessalonica refused to give him allegiance. A two-year war ensued and after defeating the Templar-supported Lombards, Henry confiscated the Templar castles of Ravennika and Zetouni (Lamia. Henry was a ruler, whose reign was largely passed in successful struggles with Kaloyan, Tsar of Bulgaria. He fought against Boril of Bulgaria and managed to defeat him in the Battle of Philippopolis, Henry campaigned against the Nicean Empire, expanding a small holding in Asia Minor with campaigns in 1207 and in 1211–1212, where he captured important Nicean possessions at Nymphaion. Domestically, Henry appears to have a different character than many of the other Crusader nobles as seen in his even-handed and pragmatic treatment of the Greeks.
Henry appears to have been brave but not cruel, and tolerant but not weak, possessing the superior courage to oppose, in a superstitious age, the pride and avarice of the clergy. The emperor died, poisoned, it is said, by Oberto II of Biandrate, ex-regent of Thessaloniki, gardner suggests this happened at the instigation of his wife, Maria of Bulgaria. On his death his brother-in-law Peter Courtenay was crowned emperor in Rome, in the years 1217 to 1219, the Latin Empire was effectively ruled by Yolanda, Henrys sister and Peters wife, in regency. The last two Latin emperors were Peter and Yolandas sons and Baldwin, Henry first married Agnes of Montferrat, daughter of Boniface of Montferrat, the Crusade leader, but she had died before her fathers death in 1207. Henry had a daughter with an unnamed mistress and this daughter, whose name is not recorded, married Alexii Slav who established his own state in the Rodophe mountains. He was given the title of despot, the Latin and Greek Churches in former Byzantine Lands under Latin Rule.
The Late Medieval Balkans, A Critical Survey from the Late Twelfth Century to the Ottoman Conquest, the Lascarids of Nicæa, The Story of an Empire in Exile. Translated by Shaw, M. R. B, the Last Centuries of Byzantium, 1261-1453. Sturdza, M. D. Dictionnaire Historique et Généalogique des Grandes Familles de Grèce, dAlbanie et de Constantinople
Kingdom of Thessalonica
The Kingdom of Thessalonica was a short-lived Crusader State founded after the Fourth Crusade over conquered Byzantine lands in Macedonia and Thessaly. After the fall of Constantinople to the crusaders in 1204, Boniface of Montferrat, the Venetians felt that Boniface was too closely tied to the Byzantine Empire, as his brother Conrad had married into the Byzantine royal family. The Venetians wanted an emperor whom they could more easily. Boniface reluctantly accepted this, and set out to conquer Thessalonica, at first he had to compete with Emperor Baldwin, who wanted the city. He went on to capture the city in 1204 and set up a kingdom there, subordinate to Baldwin, in 1204–05, Boniface was able to extend his rule south into Greece, advancing through Thessaly, Boeotia and Attica. Bonifaces rule lasted less than two years before he was ambushed by Tsar Kaloyan of Bulgaria and killed on September 4,1207, the kingdom passed to Bonifaces son Demetrius, who was still a baby, so actual power was held by various minor nobles of Lombard origin.
These nobles, under the regent Oberto, began plotting to place William VI of Montferrat, Bonifaces elder son, on the throne, Henry marched against them in 1209 and forced their submission. As a result, Henrys brother Eustace became regent for Demetrius, taking advantage of this situation, Michael I of Epirus, a former ally of Boniface, attacked the kingdom in 1210, as did the Bulgarians. Henry of Flanders eventually defeated both, but after Michaels death in 1214, his brother and successor Theodore began anew the assault on the kingdom. In 1224, just as Demetrius had become old enough to power for himself, Theodore finally captured Thessalonica. I Monferrato e i Savoia nei secoli XII–XV, Torino Runciman, Steven, A history of the Crusades, Cambridge University Press Van Tricht, the Latin Renovatio of Byzantium, The Empire of Constantinople
Philip II of France
Philip II, known as Philip Augustus, was King of France from 1180 to 1223, a member of the House of Capet. Philips predecessors had been known as kings of the Franks, but from 1190 onward, Philip became the first French monarch to style himself king of France. The son of King Louis VII and his wife, Adèle of Champagne, he was originally nicknamed Dieudonné God-given because he was the first son of Louis VII. Philip was given the nickname Augustus by the chronicler Rigord for having extended the Crown lands of France so remarkably, the military actions surrounding the Albigensian Crusade helped prepare the expansion of France southward. Philip did not participate directly in these actions, but he allowed his vassals, Philip transformed France from a small feudal state into the most prosperous and powerful country in Europe. He checked the power of the nobles and helped the towns to free themselves from seigniorial authority and he built a great wall around Paris, re-organized the French government and brought financial stability to his country.
Philip was born in Gonesse on 21 August 1165 and he spent much of the following night attempting to find his way out, but to no avail. Exhausted by cold and fatigue, he was discovered by a peasant carrying a charcoal burner. His father went on pilgrimage to the Shrine of Thomas Becket to pray for Philips recovery and was told that his son had indeed recovered, however, on his way back to Paris, he suffered a stroke. In declining health, Louis VII had his 14-year-old son crowned and anointed as king at Rheims on 1 November 1179 by the Archbishop Guillaume aux Blanches Mains. He was married on 28 April 1180 to Isabelle of Hainaut, the daughter of Baldwin V, Count of Hainaut, and Margaret I, Countess of Flanders, who brought the County of Artois as her dowry. From the time of his coronation, all power was transferred to Philip. Eventually, Louis died on 18 September 1180, while the royal demesne had increased under Philip I and Louis VI, it had diminished slightly under Louis VII. In April 1182, partially to enrich the French crown, Philip expelled all Jews from the demesne, Philips eldest son Louis was born on 5 September 1187 and inherited the County of Artois in 1190, when his mother Isabelle died.
The main source of funding for Philips army was from the royal demesne, in times of conflict, he could immediately call up 250 knights,250 horse sergeants,100 mounted crossbowmen,133 crossbowmen on foot,2,000 foot sergeants, and 300 mercenaries. Towards the end of his reign, the king could muster some 3,000 knights,9,000 sergeants,6,000 urban militiamen, using his increased revenues, Philip was the first Capetian king to build a French navy actively. By 1215, his fleet could carry a total of 7,000 men, within two years, his fleet included 10 large ships and many smaller ones. In 1181, Philip began a war with Philip, Count of Flanders, over the Vermandois, which King Philip claimed as his wifes dowry, finally the Count of Flanders invaded France, ravaging the whole district between the Somme and the Oise before penetrating as far as Dammartin
House of Flanders
The House of Flanders - called the Baldwins - was founded by Baldwin I Iron Arm, husband of Judith, daughter of Charles the Bald. From 1051, the House of Flanders reigned over the County of Hainaut, in 1119, on the death of Baldwin VII, the House of Flanders ceased to rule in Flanders. But in 1191, the House of Flanders recovered the title of Count of Flanders with Baldwin VIII, the dynasty established the Latin Empire of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade. It ruled briefly the County of Namur, the House of Flanders became extinct in 1280 with the death of Margaret II. A cadet branch, the House of Boulogne, ruled over the County of Boulogne, members of this house joined the First Crusade, established the Kingdom of Jerusalem, and produced its first kings. Note first Kings of Jerusalem since the Davidic line of kings
Henry IV, Count of Luxembourg
Henry IV, called the Blind, was count of Luxembourg from 1136 until his death and count of Namur from 1139 until his abdication in 1189. He was the son of Godfrey I, Count of Namur and Ermesinde and he inherited the counties of La Roche and Durbuy from his cousins Henry II of Durbuy and Henry of Laroche. When another cousin, Conrad II of Luxembourg, died he was granted that county by the Emperor Lothair II, at the same time he inherited the advocacies of the abbeys of Saint-Maximin at Trier and Saint-Willibrord at Echternach. This was the cause of conflicts with Albero of Montreuil. Three years later, he inherited Namur from his father, in 1141, he helped Alberon II, Bishop of Liège take Bouillon with Renaut I of Bar. In 1147, he gave up Saint-Maximin, but he regained it on the death of Archbishop Albero de Montreuil in 1152, the new archbishop, Hillin of Falmagne, exchanged the rights over the abbeys with the town of Grevenmacher in 1155. In 1157, he married Laurette, daughter of Thierry of Alsace, Count of Flanders, left without child, he designated his brother-in-law Baldwin IV of Hainault, husband of his sister Alice of Namur, as his heir.
When Baldwin died in 1171, he designated Baldwin V. Baldwin V, in 1171, Henry married a second time, this time to Agnes, daughter of Henry I, Count of Guelders and Agnes of Arnstein. Heirless still, he repudiated her in 1184, but fell seriously ill, in September 1186, a girl, was born to them. This birth called into question the plan of succession, as Henry considered his promise to Baldwin null, Henry, 76 years old, pledged his daughter in marriage to Henry II of Champagne. It was decided that Baldwin would inherit Namur, Ermesinde would inherit Durbuy and La Roche, the fiefs were dispensed in 1189 and after the planned marriage between Ermesinde and the count of Champagne was cancelled Henry bethrothed her instead to Theobald I of Bar. He entered into a war with Henry of Limburg and was defeated on 1 August 1194 at Noville-sur-Mehaigne and he died two years in Echternach