Henry I (4 May 1008 – 4 August 1060) was King of the Franks from 1031 to 1060, the third from the House of Capet. The royal demesne of France reached its smallest size during his reign, and for this reason he is often seen as emblematic of the weakness of the early Capetians. This is not entirely agreed upon, however, as other historians regard him as a strong but realistic king, who was forced to conduct a policy mindful of the limitations of the French monarchy.
Effigy of Henry I from his seal.
|King of the Franks|
|14 May 1027 – 20 July 1031;|
20 July 1031 – 4 August 1060
|Coronation||14 May 1027, Cathedral of Reims|
|Born||4 May 1008|
|Died||4 August 1060 (aged 52)|
|Spouse||Matilda of Frisia|
Anne of Kiev
Emma of France
Robert of France
Hugh I, Count of Vermandois
|Father||Robert II of France|
|Mother||Constance of Arles|
A member of the House of Capet, Henry was born in Reims, the son of King Robert II (972–1031) and Constance of Arles (986–1034). He was crowned King of France at the Cathedral of Reims on 14 May 1027, in the Capetian tradition, while his father still lived. He had little influence and power until he became sole ruler on his father's death.
The reign of Henry I, like those of his predecessors, was marked by territorial struggles. Initially, he joined his brother Robert, with the support of their mother, in a revolt against his father (1025). His mother, however, supported Robert as heir to the old king, on whose death Henry was left to deal with his rebel sibling. In 1032, he placated his brother by giving him the duchy of Burgundy which his father had given him in 1016.
In an early strategic move, Henry came to the rescue of his very young nephew-in-law, the newly appointed Duke William of Normandy (who would go on to become William the Conqueror), to suppress a revolt by William's vassals. In 1047, Henry secured the dukedom for William in their decisive victory over the vassals at the Battle of Val-ès-Dunes near Caen; however, Henry would later support the barons against William until the former's death in 1060.
In 1051, William married Matilda, the daughter of the count of Flanders, which Henry saw as a threat to his throne. In 1054, and again in 1057, Henry invaded Normandy, but on both occasions he was defeated.
Henry had three meetings with Henry III, Holy Roman Emperor—all at Ivois. In early 1043, he met him to discuss the marriage of the emperor with Agnes of Poitou, the daughter of Henry's vassal. In October 1048, the two Henries met again and signed a treaty of friendship. The final meeting took place in May 1056 and concerned disputes over Theobald III and County of Blois. The debate over the duchy became so heated that Henry accused the emperor of breach of contract and subsequently left. In 1058, Henry was selling bishoprics and abbacies, ignoring the accusations of simony and tyranny by the Papal legate Cardinal Humbert. Despite his efforts, Henry I's twenty-nine-year reign saw feudal power in France reach its pinnacle.
King Henry I died on 4 August 1060 in Vitry-en-Brie, France, and was interred in Basilica of St Denis. He was succeeded by his son, Philip I of France, who was 7 at the time of his death; for six years Henry's queen Anne of Kiev ruled as regent. At the time of his death, he was besieging Thimert, which had been occupied by the Normans since 1058.
Henry I was betrothed to Matilda, the daughter of Conrad II, Holy Roman Emperor, but she died prematurely in 1034. Henry then married Matilda of Frisia, but she died in 1044, following a Caesarean section. Casting further afield in search of a third wife, Henry married Anne of Kiev on 19 May 1051. They had four children:
Henry I of FranceBorn: 4 May 1008 Died: 4 August 1060
Robert the Pious
| King of the Franks
14 May 1027 – 4 August 1060
with Robert II as senior king (14 May 1027 – 20 July 1031)
Philip I as junior king (23 May 1059 – 4 August 1060)
| Duke of Burgundy
Robert the Old
Year 1054 (MLIV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar.Ada de Warenne
Ada de Warenne (or Adeline de Varenne) (c. 1120 – 1178) was a Scottish princess, the Anglo-Norman wife of Henry of Scotland, Earl of Northumbria and Earl of Huntingdon. She was the daughter of William de Warenne, 2nd Earl of Surrey by Elizabeth of Vermandois, and a great-granddaughter of Henry I of France. She became mother to two Kings of Scots, Malcolm the Maiden and William the Lion.Anastasia of Kiev
Anastasia of Kiev (c. 1023 – 1074/1096) was Queen of Hungary by marriage to King Andrew the White. She was the eldest daughter of Grand Prince Yaroslav I the Wise of Kiev and Ingigerd of Sweden, and the older sister of Anne of Kiev, Queen consort of Henry I of France.Anne of Kiev
Anne of Kiev (c. 1030 – 1075), also known as Anna Yaroslavna, Anne of Rus, Anne de Russie, or Agnes de Russie, was the queen consort of Henry I of France. She later served as regent during the minority of her son Philip I of France. Anne founded the Abbey of St. Vincent at Senlis.Battle of Mortemer
The Battle of Mortemer was a defeat for Henry I of France when he led an army against his vassal, William the Bastard, Duke of Normandy in 1054. William was eventually to become known as William the Conqueror after his successful invasion and conquest of England.Battle of Varaville
The Battle of Varaville was a battle fought in 1057 by William, Duke of Normandy, against King Henry I of France and Count Geoffrey Martel of Anjou.
In August 1057, King Henry and Count Geoffrey invaded Normandy on a campaign that was aimed at Bayeux and Caen. The size of their army and its composition are unknown. They first arrived in the Hiemois region of Normandy and began raiding and pillaging towards the two towns. Duke William, who appears to have been reluctant to oppose his overlord directly, gathered a large army at Falaise but took no other action besides keeping scouts out to report the invading force's movements. When the invaders reached a ford on the estuary of the Dives River near Varaville, they began to cross but when the tide came in, the process had only been half completed, leaving the army split in two. William seized the opportunity and attacked the half of the invading army that had not yet crossed. Later reports by chroniclers made the battle into a massacre, but contemporary writers barely noticed it. Modern historians have praised William's generalship during the battle, with David Bates noting the battle as an example of William's habit of surprising his enemies with unexpected moves.The main effect was that the invaders retreated quickly from Normandy. The battle also marked the end of the last invasion of Normandy during Duke William's lifetime. After the retreat of Henry and Geoffrey, William was able to extend his influence outside his Norman lands, increasing his power in Maine in the years 1057 through 1060. Other results included Bishop Ivo of Sees switching from an Angevin to a Norman alliance.In the next year, 1058, William invaded King Henry's lands and recaptured the castle at Tillières, which had been lost to the Normans during William's minority.Capetian dynasty
The Capetian dynasty (), also known as the House of France, is a dynasty of Frankish origin, founded by Hugh Capet. It is among the largest and oldest royal houses in Europe and the world, and consists of Hugh Capet's male-line descendants. The senior line ruled in France as the House of Capet from the election of Hugh Capet in 987 until the death of Charles IV in 1328. That line was succeeded by cadet branches, the Houses of Valois and then Bourbon, which ruled until the French Revolution.
The dynasty had a crucial role in the formation of the French state. Initially obeyed only in their own demesne, the Île-de-France, the Capetian kings slowly but steadily increased their power and influence until it grew to cover the entirety of their realm. For a detailed narration on the growth of French royal power, see Crown lands of France.
Members of the dynasty were traditionally Catholic, and the early Capetians had an alliance with the Church. The French were also the most active participants in the Crusades, culminating in a series of five Crusader Kings – Louis VII, Philip Augustus, Louis VIII, Saint Louis, and Philip III. The Capetian alliance with the papacy suffered a severe blow after the disaster of the Aragonese Crusade. Philip III's son and successor, Philip IV, humiliated a pope and brought the papacy under French control. The later Valois, starting with Francis I, ignored religious differences and allied with the Ottoman Sultan to counter the growing power of the Holy Roman Empire. Henry IV was a Protestant at the time of his accession, but realized the necessity of conversion after four years of religious warfare.
The Capetians generally enjoyed a harmonious family relationship. By tradition, younger sons and brothers of the King of France are given appanages for them to maintain their rank and to dissuade them from claiming the French crown itself. When Capetian cadets did aspire for kingship, their ambitions were directed not at the French throne, but at foreign thrones. Through this, the Capetians spread widely over Europe.
In modern times, both King Felipe VI of Spain and Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg are members of this family, both through the Bourbon branch of the dynasty. Along with the House of Habsburg, it was one of the two most powerful continental European royal families, dominating European politics for nearly five centuries.Elizabeth of Vermandois, Countess of Leicester
Elizabeth of Vermandois, or Elisabeth or Isabel de Vermandois (c. 1085 – 1131), was the third daughter of Hugh Magnus and Adelaide of Vermandois, and as such represented both the Capetian line of her paternal grandfather Henry I of France, and the Carolingian ancestry of her maternal grandfather Herbert IV of Vermandois. As the wife of two Anglo-Norman magnates, Robert de Beaumont, 1st Earl of Leicester and William de Warenne, 2nd Earl of Surrey, she is the ancestress of hundreds of well-known families down to the present time. She is the ancestress of all Scottish rulers including and after her grandson Malcolm IV and all English rulers starting with Henry IV.Geoffrey II, Count of Anjou
Geoffrey II, called Martel ("the Hammer"), was Count of Anjou from 1040 to 1060. He was the son of Fulk the Black. He was bellicose and fought against William VII, Duke of Aquitaine, Theobald I, Count of Blois, and William, Duke of Normandy. During his twenty-year reign he especially had to face the ambitions of the Bishop of Le Mans, Gervais de Château-du-Loir, but he was able to maintain his authority over the County of Maine. Even before the death of his father in 1040, he had extended his power up to the Saintonge, where he founded the Abbey aux Dames. The first mention of Geoffrey in the Gesta Normannorum Ducum reads: "Geoffrey, count of the Angevins, nicknamed Martel, a treacherous man in every respect, frequently inflicted assaults and intolerable pressure on his neighbors.""In alliance with King Henry I of France, Count Geoffrey laid siege to Tours in the winter of 1042–3. After the battle of Nouy on 21 August 1044 Count Theobald I of Blois-Chartres (1039–89) was taken prisoner by [Count Geoffrey], to whom he surrendered Tours with Chinon and Langeais, excluding, however, the monastery of Marmoutier." Henry and Geoffrey became estranged after this, and were not reconciled again until c. 1052, when their names appear together in a charter of August of that year. This is in conjunction with the rebellion of William of Talou against the duke of Normandy, and Count Geoffrey's taking possession of the city of Mans (shortly after 26 March 1051).
Allied once again with King Henry, Count Geoffrey assaulted Normandy and seized the towns of Domfront and Alençon, evidently with the help of treachery within. Duke William laid siege to Domfront, which resisted his efforts to retake it throughout the winter of 1052. At this point Talou withdrew from the siege and started his rebellion. Duke William rapidly retook Alençon and then Domfront, driving Count Geoffrey back across the Norman border into Maine.
While Count Geoffrey was off balance, Duke William laid siege to Talou's castle at Arques. King Henry failed to relieve Arques, and Talou's rebellion had failed and he was exiled by late 1053. In late January, early February 1054, Count Geoffrey and King Henry together invaded Normandy and marched down the Seine toward Rouen. The King had divided his army and sent the other wing through eastern Normandy under the command of his brother Eudes, supported by Count Reginald of Clermont, Count Ralph of Montdidier, and Guy I, Count of Ponthieu. This army was defeated in a battle near Mortemer. Upon learning of this reverse, King Henry insisted upon retreating from Normandy, and Count Geoffrey accompanied him.
For the next several years, the war was centered in the County of Maine, with Duke William on the offensive. But King Henry in 1057, "burning to avenge the insult inflicted on him by the duke, summoned Geoffrey, count of Anjou, to prepare a large army for another expedition into Normandy." (GND) This combined effort placed Duke William temporarily on the defensive. He retreated before the invaders as they moved deeper into Normandy. After penetrating to the Bessin, the Franco-Angevin army began to ford the River Dives near the estuary which is tidal. After the king and Count Geoffrey had crossed over, the remainder of their army got stuck on the opposite bank by the incoming tide. Duke William launched a sudden attack and defeated them. King Henry and Count Geoffrey withdrew again from Normandy and never returned. Count Geoffrey continued to offer resistance in Maine against the Norman expansion until his death on 14 November 1060.Gervais de Château-du-Loir
Gervais de Château-du-Loir (1007–1067) was a French nobleman, bishop, and a powerful figure of his time in Northern France. He was Bishop of Le Mans from 1036, and Archbishop of Reims from 1055.
His father was Aimon de Château-du-Loir, whilst his mother was Hildeburge de Bellême, daughter of Yves de Bellême. His maternal uncle Avesgaud de Bellême, Bishop of Le Mans raised Gervais and groomed him to succeed to the Bishopric of Le Mans. He was a strong supporter of the family of Blois, and opposed to the Angevins. At one point he had to seek refuge at the court of William, Duke of Normandy. Henry I appointed him Archbishop of Reims in 1055. As Archbishop, he crowned Philip I of France in 1059. Philip's father Henry I of France was then alive, but died in 1060. Gervais was then regent, with Baldwin V, Count of Flanders, until 1066. Gervais died in 1067 and was buried in Reims Cathedral.Hugh, Count of Vermandois
Hugh (1057 – October 18, 1101), called the Great (Latin Hugo Magnus), was a younger son of Henry I of France and Anne of Kiev and younger brother of Philip I. He was Count of Vermandois in right of his wife (jure uxoris). His nickname Magnus (greater or elder) is probably a bad translation into Latin of a French nickname, le Maisné, meaning "the younger", referring to Hugh as younger brother of the King of France.List of oldest heraldry
This list of oldest heraldry aims to include the oldest documented, non-attributed heraldic achievements for individuals, families, locations or institutions.
Heraldry developed in the High Middle Ages (c. 1000-1250), based on earlier, "pre-heraldic" or "ante-heraldic", traditions of visual identification by means of seals, field signs, emblems used on coins, etc. Notably, lions that would subsequently appear in 12th-century coats of arms of European nobility have pre-figurations in the animal style of ancient art (specifically the style of Scythian art as it developed from c. the 7th century BC).The origin of the term heraldry itself (Middle English heraldy, Old French hiraudie), can be placed in the context of the early forms of the knightly tournaments in the 12th century. Combatants wore full armour, and identified themselves by wearing their emblems on their shields. A herald (Old French heraut, from a Frankish *hariwald "commander of an army") was an officer who would announce the competitors.
The display of heraldic emblems on shields is an innovation of the 12th century. The kite shields shown in the Bayeux Tapestry (c. 1070) sometimes show simple cross or spiral ornaments, but no heraldic emblems. Similarly, Frankish or German round shields of the 11th century (Ottonian, Salian) are sometimes depicted with simple geometric ornamentation, but not with figurative emblems.
Early mention of heraldic shields in Middle High German literature likewise dates to the 12th century.In some cases, the adoption of a symbol on a coat of arms was the culmination of a gradual progression, whereby a family can be seen using a symbol in a quasi-heraldic manner prior to its adoption as part of a formal coat. An example of this are the Counts of Saint-Pol, who between 1083 and 1130 decorated their coins with wheat sheafs that are then found on the equestrian seal of Count Engueraud (1141-50) placed in the blank space surrounding the mounted knight, before appearing on the shield of count Anselm and his successors from 1162. Similarly, the fleur-de-lis progressed from use as a decorative emblem by Henry I of France (1031-60) to then be displayed as a quasi-heraldic symbol by Louis VI, Louis VII, and Philip II (1180-1223) before becoming the charge of the French royal arms under the last of these kings. Lions were used as heraldic emblems by Henry "the Lion" (before 1146), and Alfonso VII of León (d. 1157), and probably by Henry I of England (d. 1135), in the first half of the 12th century, and lions later appear on the coats of arms of their respective realms.
The oldest surviving heraldic seals are the equestrian seals (German: Reitersiegel) used by high nobility in the second half of the 12th century. Among the oldest examples from the Holy Roman Empire, of what would develop into German heraldry, is the lion (or "leopard") of the Staufer coat of arms, first used before 1146 by Henry "the Lion", and in 1181 on the seal of Frederick VI of Swabia. Similar seals are known from England, one of the oldest being the equestrian seal of King Richard Lionheart of the House of Plantagenet, dated 1189, showing a heraldic lion design on the king's shield. His second seal, dated 1198, shows the three lions design which would subsequently become the royal coat of arms of England.
The earliest known colored heraldic representation appears on the funerary enamel of Geoffrey of Anjou (d. 1151), showing a coat of arms that appears to be the same as one later used by some of his descendants. Depiction of heraldic shields in manuscript miniatures becomes more common in the early-to-mid 13th century, and dedicated armorials become fashionable in the mid-to-late 13th century.Matilda of Franconia
Matilda of Franconia (c. 1027 – 1034) was a daughter of Emperor Conrad II and Gisela of Swabia from the Salian dynasty. Matilda’s elder brother was Henry III, Holy Roman Emperor.
At a meeting with King Henry I of France in Deville in Lorraine in May 1033, Conrad agreed to marry five-year-old Matilda to Henry. However, before she could marry, she died in early 1034. Her marriage was arranged to confirm a peace compact agreed between Henry and Conrad.
She was buried in Worms Cathedral.
Conrad’s chaplain Wipo of Burgundy mentioned Matilda as “filia imperatoris Chuonradi et Giselæ, Mahthilda”.Melisende, Viscountess of Châteaudun
Melisende (d. before 1040), Viscountess of Châteaudun, daughter of Hugues, Viscount of Châteaudun, and Hildegarde, Viscountess of Châteaudun.
Very little is known about Melisende. The only written record concerns the donation of the Church of Champrond in Nogent-le-Rotrou (the former capital of Perche) in the first year of the reign of Henry I of France by her son Geoffrey.
Melisende married Fulcois, Count of Montagne, son of Rotrou, Seigneur de Nogent. Melisende and Fulcois had two children:
Geoffrey II, Viscount of Châteaudun and Count of Perche
Hugues du Perche.She was succeeded by her son Geoffrey as Viscount of Châteaudun in 1030.Philip I of France
Philip I (23 May 1052 – 29 July 1108), called the Amorous, was King of the Franks from 1060 to 1108, the fourth from the House of Capet. His reign, like that of most of the early Capetians, was extraordinarily long for the time. The monarchy began a modest recovery from the low it reached in the reign of his father and he added to the royal demesne the Vexin and Bourges.Queen consort
A queen consort is the wife of a reigning king (or an empress consort in the case of an emperor). A queen consort usually shares her husband's social rank and status. She holds the feminine equivalent of the king's monarchical titles, but historically, she does not share the king's political and military powers. A queen regnant is a queen in her own right with all the powers of a monarch, who (usually) has become queen by inheriting the throne upon the death of the previous monarch.
In Brunei, the wife of the Sultan is known as a Raja Isteri with prefix Pengiran Anak, equivalent to queen consort in English, as were the consorts of tsars when Bulgaria was still a monarchy.Ralph I, Count of Vermandois
Ralph I of Vermandois (French: Raoul Ier "le Vaillant") (d. 14 October 1152) was Count of Vermandois. He was a son of Hugh, Count of Vermandois and his wife, Adelaide, Countess of Vermandois. By his father, he was a grandson of Henry I of France, while his mother had been the heiress to Herbert IV, Count of Vermandois.
His only paternal uncle was Philip I of France. Through him Ralph was a first cousin of Louis VI of France and a first cousin once removed of Louis VII of France.
Ralph served as the seneschal of France during the reign of his cousin Louis VII. Under pressure from Queen consort Eleanor of Aquitaine, Louis allowed him to repudiate his wife Eleanor of Champagne, daughter of Stephen, Count of Blois and Adela of Normandy and sister of the reigning King Stephen of England, in favor of Eleanor of Aquitaine's sister, Petronilla of Aquitaine. This led to a war with Theobald II of Champagne, who was the brother of Ralph's first wife Eleanor. The war lasted two years (1142–44) and ended with the occupation of Champagne by the royal army.
Ralph and Petronilla were excommunicated by Pope Innocent II for a marriage deemed illegitimate, overriding three bishops who had already annulled Ralph's prior marriage. In 1148, Pope Eugene III, legitimized the marriage at the Council of Reims.Robert I, Duke of Burgundy
Robert I of Burgundy (1011 – 21 March 1076), known as Robert the Old and "Tête-Hardi", was Duke of Burgundy from 1032 to his death. Robert was son of King Robert II of France and Constance of Arles. His brother was Henry I of France.William Busac
William Busac (1020-1076), son of William I, Count of Eu, and his wife Lesceline. Count of Eu, Count of Soissons, de jure uxoris. William was given the nickname Busac by the medieval chronicler Robert of Torigni.
William appealed to King Henry I of France, who gave him in marriage Adelaide, the heiress of the county of Soissons. Adelaide was daughter of Renaud I, Count of Soissons, and Grand Master of the Hotel de France. William then became Count of Soissons in right of his wife. William and Adelaide had four children:
Renaud II, Count of Soissons
John I, Count of Soissons, married to Aveline de Pierrefonds
Manasses of Soissons, Bishop of Cambrai, Bishop of Soissons (d. 1 Mar 1108)
Lithuise de Blois, married to Milo I of Montlhéry
Unnamed daughter, married to Yves I of Nesle, founder of the House of Nesle.His son Renaud became Count of Soissons upon William’s death, and he was succeeded by his brother John.
|Ancestors of Henry I of France|
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