Louis IX of France

Louis IX (25 April 1214 – 25 August 1270), commonly known as Saint Louis, was King of France, the ninth from the House of Capet, and is a canonized Catholic and Anglican saint. Louis was crowned in Reims at the age of 12, following the death of his father Louis VIII; his mother, Blanche of Castile, ruled the kingdom as regent until he reached maturity. During Louis' childhood, Blanche dealt with the opposition of rebellious vassals and put an end to the Albigensian Crusade which had started 20 years earlier.

As an adult, Louis IX faced recurring conflicts with some of the most-powerful nobles, such as Hugh X of Lusignan and Peter of Dreux. Simultaneously, Henry III of England tried to restore his continental possessions, but was utterly defeated at the battle of Taillebourg. His reign saw the annexation of several provinces, notably parts of Aquitaine, Maine and Provence.

Louis IX was a reformer and developed French royal justice, in which the king was the supreme judge to whom anyone could appeal to seek the amendment of a judgment. He banned trials by ordeal, tried to prevent the private wars that were plaguing the country, and introduced the presumption of innocence in criminal procedure. To enforce the application of this new legal system, Louis IX created provosts and bailiffs.

Following a vow he made after a serious illness and confirmed after a miraculous cure, Louis IX took an active part in the Seventh and Eighth Crusades. He died from dysentery during the latter crusade, and was succeeded by his son Philip III.

Louis's actions were inspired by Christian zeal and Catholic devotion. He decided to severely punish blasphemy (for which he set the punishment to mutilation of the tongue and lips),[1] gambling, interest-bearing loans and prostitution. He spent exorbitant sums on presumed relics of Christ, for which he built the Sainte-Chapelle, and he expanded the scope of the Inquisition and ordered the burning of Talmuds and other Jewish books. He is the only canonized king of France, and there are consequently many places named after him.

Saint Louis IX
Contemporary depiction from about 1230
King of France (more...)
Reign8 November 1226 – 25 August 1270
Coronation29 November 1226 in Reims Cathedral
PredecessorLouis VIII
SuccessorPhilip III
Born25 April 1214
Poissy, France
Died25 August 1270 (aged 56)
French Tunis, North Africa
among others...
FatherLouis VIII, King of France
MotherBlanche of Castile
ReligionRoman Catholicism


Much of what is known of Louis's life comes from Jean de Joinville's famous Life of Saint Louis. Joinville was a close friend, confidant, and counselor to the king, and he also participated as a witness in the papal inquest into Louis' life that ended with his canonisation in 1297 by Pope Boniface VIII.

Two other important biographies were written by the king's confessor, Geoffrey of Beaulieu, and his chaplain, William of Chartres. While several individuals wrote biographies in the decades following the king's death, only Jean of Joinville, Geoffrey of Beaulieu, and William of Chartres wrote from personal knowledge of the king, and all three are biased favorably to the king. The fourth important source of information is William of Saint-Parthus' 19th century biography,[2] which he wrote using the papal inquest mentioned above.

Early life

Louis was born on 25 April 1214 at Poissy, near Paris, the son of Louis the Lion and Blanche of Castile, and baptised in La Collégiale Notre-Dame church. His grandfather on his father's side was Philip II, king of France; while his grandfather on his mother's side was Alfonso VIII, king of Castile. Tutors of Blanche's choosing taught him most of what a king must know—Latin, public speaking, writing, military arts, and government.[3] He was nine years old when his grandfather Philip II died and his father ascended as Louis VIII.[4] Louis was 12 years old when his father died on 8 November 1226. He was crowned king within the month at Reims cathedral. Because of Louis's youth, his mother ruled France as regent during his minority.[5]

Louis' mother trained him to be a great leader and a good Christian. She used to say:[6]

I love you, my dear son, as much as a mother can love her child; but I would rather see you dead at my feet than that you should ever commit a mortal sin.

His younger brother Charles I of Sicily (1227–85) was created count of Anjou, thus founding the Capetian Angevin dynasty.

No date is given for the beginning of Louis's personal rule. His contemporaries viewed his reign as co-rule between the king and his mother, though historians generally view the year 1234 as the year in which Louis began ruling personally, with his mother assuming a more advisory role.[7] She continued to have a strong influence on the king until her death in 1252.[5][8]


On 27 May 1234, Louis married Margaret of Provence (1221 – 21 December 1295), whose sister Eleanor later became the wife of Henry III of England. The new queen's religious zeal made her a well suited partner for the king. He enjoyed her company, and was pleased to show her the many public works he was making in Paris, both for its defense and for its health. They enjoyed riding together, reading, and listening to music. This attention raised a certain amount of jealousy in his mother, who tried to keep them apart as much as she could.[9]

Disputation of Paris

In the 1230s, Nicholas Donin, a Jewish convert to Christianity, translated the Talmud and pressed 35 charges against it to Pope Gregory IX by quoting a series of blasphemous passages about Jesus, Mary or Christianity. There is a Talmudic passage, for example, where Jesus of Nazareth is sent to Hell to be boiled in excrement for eternity. Donin also selected an injunction of the Talmud that permits Jews to kill non-Jews. This led to the Disputation of Paris, which took place in 1240 at the court of Louis IX, where rabbi Yechiel of Paris defended the Talmud against the accusations of Nicholas Donin. The translation of the Talmud from Judeo Aramaic to a non-Jewish, profane language was seen by Jews as a profound violation. The disputation led to the condemnation of the Talmud and the burning of thousands of copies.[10]


When Louis was 15, his mother brought an end to the Albigensian Crusade in 1229 after signing an agreement with Count Raymond VII, Count of Toulouse that cleared the latter's father of wrongdoing.[11] Raymond VI, Count of Toulouse had been suspected of murdering a preacher on a mission to convert the Cathars.[12]

Louis went on two crusades, in his mid-30s in 1248 (Seventh Crusade), and then again in his mid-50s in 1270 (Eighth Crusade).

Seventh Crusade

Gustave Doré, le départ de Louis IX pour la croisade
Engraving representing the departure from Aigues-Mortes of King Louis IX for the Seventh Crusade (by Gustave Doré)
Statue of Louis IX, Basilique du Sacré-Cœur de Montmartre, Paris 2009
Equestrian statue of King Saint Louis at the Sacré-Cœur

In 1248 Louis decided that his obligations as a son of the Church outweighed those of his throne, and he left his kingdom for a disastrous six-year adventure. Since the base of Muslim power had shifted to Egypt, Louis did not even march on the Holy Land; any war against Islam now fit the definition of a Crusade.[13]

Louis and his followers landed in Egypt on 5 June 1249 and began his first crusade with the rapid capture of the port of Damietta.[13][14] This attack caused some disruption in the Muslim Ayyubid empire, especially as the current sultan, Al-Malik as-Salih Najm al-Din Ayyub, was on his deathbed. However, the march from Damietta toward Cairo through the Nile River Delta went slowly. The rising of the Nile and the summer heat made it impossible for them to advance and follow up on their success.[15] During this time, the Ayyubid sultan died, and the sultan's wife Shajar al-Durr set in motion a sudden power shift that would make her Queen and eventually place the Egyptian army of the Mamluks in power. On 8 February 1250 Louis lost his army at the Battle of Al Mansurah[16] and was captured by the Egyptians. His release was eventually negotiated in return for a ransom of 400,000 livres tournois (at the time France's annual revenue was only about 1,250,000 livres tournois) and the surrender of the city of Damietta.[17]

C croisade7 prisonnier1
Louis IX was taken prisoner at the Battle of Fariskur, during the Seventh Crusade (Gustave Doré).

Four years in Latin Kingdoms

Following his release from Egyptian captivity, Louis spent four years in the Latin kingdoms of Acre, Caesarea, and Jaffa, using his wealth to assist the Crusaders in rebuilding their defences[18] and conducting diplomacy with the Islamic powers of Syria and Egypt. In the spring of 1254 he and his army returned to France.[13]

Louis exchanged multiple letters and emissaries with Mongol rulers of the period. During his first crusade in 1248, Louis was approached by envoys from Eljigidei, the Mongol military commander stationed in Armenia and Persia.[19] Eljigidei suggested that King Louis should land in Egypt, while Eljigidei attacked Baghdad, to prevent the Saracens of Egypt and those of Syria from joining forces. Louis sent André de Longjumeau, a Dominican priest, as an emissary to the Great Khan Güyük Khan (r. 1246–48) in Mongolia. Güyük died before the emissary arrived at his court, however, and nothing concrete occurred. Instead his queen and now regent, Oghul Qaimish, politely turned down the diplomatic offer.[20]

Louis dispatched another envoy to the Mongol court, the Franciscan William of Rubruck, who went to visit the Great Khan Möngke (1251–1259) in Mongolia. He spent several years at the Mongol court. In 1259, Berke, the ruler of the Golden Horde, westernmost part of the Mongolian Empire, demanded the submission of Louis.[21] On the contrary, Mongolian Emperors Möngke and Khubilai's brother, the Ilkhan Hulegu, sent a letter seeking military assistance from the king of France, but the letter did not reach France.[22]

Eighth Crusade

Mort de Louis IX le Saint
Death of Saint Louis: On 25 August 1270, Saint Louis dies under his fleurdelisé tent before the city of Tunis. Illuminated by Jean Fouquet, Grandes Chroniques de France (1455–1460)

In a parliament held at Paris, 24 March 1267, Louis and his three sons took the cross. On hearing the reports of the missionaries, Louis resolved to land at Tunis, and he ordered his younger brother, Charles of Anjou, to join him there. The crusaders, among whom was the English prince Edward Longshanks, landed at Carthage 17 July 1270, but disease broke out in the camp. Many died of dysentery, and on 25 August, Louis himself died.[18][23]

Patron of arts and arbiter of Europe

Louis' patronage of the arts drove much innovation in Gothic art and architecture, and the style of his court radiated throughout Europe by both the purchase of art objects from Parisian masters for export, and by the marriage of the king's daughters and female relatives to foreign husbands and their subsequent introduction of Parisian models elsewhere. Louis' personal chapel, the Sainte-Chapelle in Paris, was copied more than once by his descendants elsewhere. Louis most likely ordered the production of the Morgan Bible, a masterpiece of medieval painting.

Pope Innocent IV with Louis IX at Cluny

During the so-called "golden century of Saint Louis", the kingdom of France was at its height in Europe, both politically and economically. Saint Louis was regarded as "primus inter pares", first among equals, among the kings and rulers of the continent. He commanded the largest army and ruled the largest and wealthiest kingdom, the European centre of arts and intellectual thought at the time. The foundations for the famous college of theology later known as the Sorbonne were laid in Paris about the year 1257.[15] The prestige and respect felt in Europe for King Louis IX were due more to the attraction that his personality created rather than to military domination. For his contemporaries, he was the quintessential example of the Christian prince and embodied the whole of Christendom in his person. His reputation for saintliness and fairness was already well established while he was alive, and on many occasions he was chosen as an arbiter in quarrels among the rulers of Europe.[7]

Shortly before 1256, Enguerrand IV, Lord of Coucy, arrested and without trial hanged three young squires of Laon whom he accused of poaching in his forest. In 1256 Louis had him arrested and brought to the Louvre by his sergeants. Enguerrand demanded judgment by his peers and trial by battle, which the king refused because he thought it obsolete. Enguerrand was tried, sentenced, and ordered to pay 12,000 livres. Part of the money was to pay for masses in perpetuity for the men he had hanged.

In 1258, Louis and James I of Aragon signed the Treaty of Corbeil, under which Louis renounced his feudal overlordship over the County of Barcelona and Roussillon, which was held by the King of Aragon. James in turn renounced his feudal overlordship over several counties in southern France including Provence and Languedoc. In 1259 Louis signed the Treaty of Paris, by which Henry III of England was confirmed in his possession of territories in southwestern France and Louis received the provinces of Anjou, Normandy (Normandie), Poitou, Maine, and Touraine.[5]

Religious nature

Louis IX Receives Discipline
Louis IX allowing himself to be whipped as penance

The perception of Louis IX as the exemplary Christian prince was reinforced by his religious zeal. Louis was an extremely devout Catholic, and he built the Sainte-Chapelle ("Holy Chapel"),[7] located within the royal palace complex (now the Paris Hall of Justice), on the Île de la Cité in the centre of Paris. The Sainte Chapelle, a prime example of the Rayonnant style of Gothic architecture, was erected as a shrine for what Louis believed to be the Crown of Thorns and a fragment of the True Cross, supposed precious relics of the Passion of Christ. He purchased these in 1239–41 from Emperor Baldwin II of the Latin Empire of Constantinople, for the exorbitant sum of 135,000 livres (the construction of the chapel, for comparison, cost only 60,000 livres).

Louis IX took very seriously his mission as "lieutenant of God on Earth", with which he had been invested when he was crowned in Reims. To fulfill this duty, he conducted two crusades, and even though both ended disastrously, they contributed to his prestige. Everything he did was for what he saw as the glory of God and the good of his people. He protected the poor and was never heard to speak ill of anyone. He excelled in penance, leaving to us both a hair shirt and a scourge, and had a great love for the Church. He was merciful even to rebels. When he was urged to put to death a prince who had followed his father in rebellion, he refused, saying: "A son cannot refuse to obey his father."[6]

Hair shirt and scourge of Louis IX. Treasury of Notre-Dame de Paris.

In 1230 the King forbade all forms of usury, defined at the time as any taking of interest and therefore covering most banking activities. Where the original borrowers from Jewish and Lombard lenders could not be found, Louis exacted from those lenders a contribution towards the crusade which Pope Gregory was then trying to launch.[15] Louis also ordered, at the urging of Pope Gregory IX, the burning in Paris in 1243 of some 12,000 manuscript copies of the Talmud and other Jewish books. Eventually, the edict against the Talmud was overturned by Gregory IX's successor, Innocent IV.[24]

In addition to Louis' legislation against banking and to his burning of Jewish books, he expanded the scope of the Inquisition in France and set the punishment for blasphemy to mutilation of the tongue and lips.[1] The area most affected by this expansion was southern France where the Cathar sect had been strongest. The rate of these confiscations reached its highest levels in the years before his first crusade, and slowed upon his return to France in 1254. In 1250, he headed a crusade and was taken prisoner. During his captivity, he recited the Divine Office every day. After his release against ransom, he visited the Holy Land before returning to France.[6] In these deeds, Louis IX tried to fulfill what he saw as the duty of France as "the eldest daughter of the Church" (la fille aînée de l'Église), a tradition of protector of the Church going back to the Franks and Charlemagne, who had been crowned by the Pope Leo III in Rome in 800. Indeed, the kings of France were known by the title "most Christian king" (Rex Christianissimus). The relationship between France and the papacy was at its peak in the 12th and 13th centuries, and most of the crusades were actually called by the popes from French soil.

Louis was renowned for his charity. Beggars were fed from his table, he ate their leavings, washed their feet, ministered to the wants of the lepers, and daily fed over one hundred poor. He founded many hospitals and houses: the House of the Filles-Dieu for reformed prostitutes; the Quinze-Vingt for 300 blind men (1254), hospitals at Pontoise, Vernon, Compiégne.[25]

St. Louis installed a house of the Trinitarian Order in his château of Fontainebleau. He chose Trinitarians as his chaplains, and was accompanied by them on his crusades. In his spiritual testament he wrote: "My dearest son, you should permit yourself to be tormented by every kind of martyrdom before you would allow yourself to commit a mortal sin."[6]


  1. Blanche (12 July/4 December[26] 1240 – 29 April 1243), died in infancy.
  2. Isabella (2 March 1241 – 28 January 1271), married Theobald II of Navarre.
  3. Louis (23 September 1243/24 February 1244[26] – 11 January/2 February 1260). Betrothed to Berengaria of Castile in Paris on 20 August 1255.[26]
  4. Philip III (1 May 1245 – 5 October 1285), married firstly to Isabella of Aragon in 1262 and secondly to Maria of Brabant in 1274.
  5. John (1246/1247[26] – 10 March 1248), died in infancy.
  6. John Tristan (8 April 1250 – 3 August 1270), Count of Valois, married Yolande II, Countess of Nevers.
  7. Peter (1251 – 6/7 April 1284), Count of Perche and Alençon, married Joanne of Châtillon.
  8. Blanche (early 1253[26] – 17 June 1320), married Ferdinand de la Cerda, Infante of Castile.
  9. Margaret (early 1255[26] – July 1271), married John I, Duke of Brabant.
  10. Robert (1256 – 7 February 1317), Count of Clermont, married Beatrice of Burgundy. The French crown devolved upon his male-line descendant, Henry IV, when the legitimate male line of Robert's older brother Philip III died out in 1589.
  11. Agnes (1260 – 19/20 December 1327[26]), married Robert II, Duke of Burgundy.

Louis had his two children that died in infancy to be buried at the Cistercian abbey of Royaumont; in 1820 they were transferred to Saint-Denis Basilica.[27]

Death and legacy

San Domenico47
Reliquary of Saint Louis (end of the 13th century) Basilica of Saint Dominic, Bologna, Italy

During his second crusade, Louis died at Tunis on 25 August 1270, in an epidemic of dysentery that swept through his army.[23][28][29] Uncommon in Muslim burial practice, the territory where he died, his body was subject to the process known as mos Teutonicus (a postmortem funerary custom used in medieval Europe whereby the flesh was boiled from the body, so that the bones of the deceased could be transported hygienically from distant lands back home) for its transportation back to France.[30] He was succeeded by his son, Philip III.

His heart and intestines, however, were conveyed by his younger brother, Charles I of Naples, for burial in the cathedral of Monreale near Palermo.[31] His bones were carried in a lengthy processional across Sicily, Italy, the Alps, and France, until they were interred in the royal necropolis at Saint-Denis in May 1271.[32] Charles and Philip later disbursed a number of relics to promote his veneration.[33]

Veneration as a saint

Saint Louis
Saint Louis, painting by El Greco c. 1592 – 95
King of France, Confessor
Born25 April 1214
Poissy, France
Died25 August 1270 (aged 56)
Tunis in what is now Tunisia
Venerated inRoman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion
Canonized11 July 1297 by Pope Boniface VIII
Feast25 August
AttributesDepicted as King of France, generally with a crown, holding a sceptre with a fleur-de-lys on the end, possibly with blue clothing with a spread of white fleur-de-lys (coat of arms of the French monarchy)
PatronageFrance, French monarchy, Third Order of St. Francis, Archdiocese of New Orleans, Roman Catholic Diocese of Port-Louis, hairdressers; passementiers (lacemakers)

Pope Boniface VIII proclaimed the canonization of Louis in 1297;[34] he is the only French king to be declared a saint.[35] Louis IX is often considered the model of the ideal Christian monarch.[34] The impact of his canonization was so great that many of his successors were named Louis.

Named in his honour, the Sisters of Charity of St. Louis is a Roman Catholic religious order founded in Vannes, France, in 1803.[36] A similar order, the Sisters of St Louis, was founded in Juilly in 1842.[37][38]

He is honoured as co-patron of the Third Order of St. Francis, which claims him as a member of the Order. Even in childhood, his compassion for the poor and suffering people had been obvious to all who knew him and when he became king, over a hundred poor people ate in his house on ordinary days. Often the king served these guests himself. Such acts of charity, coupled with Louis' devout religious practices, gave rise to the legend that he joined the Third Order of St. Francis. Though it is unlikely that Louis did join the order, his life and actions proclaimed him one of them in spirit.[3]

Places named after Saint Louis

The cities of San Luis Potosí in Mexico; St. Louis, Missouri; St. Louis Park, Minnesota; St. Louis, Michigan; San Luis, Arizona; San Luis, Colorado; Saint-Louis du Sénégal; Saint-Louis in Alsace; as well as Lake Saint-Louis in Quebec, the Mission San Luis Rey de Francia in California and São Luís, Maranhão in Brazil are among the many places named after the French king and saint.

The Cathedral Saint-Louis in Versailles; the Basilica of St. Louis, King of France completed in 1834 and the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis completed in 1914, both in St. Louis, Missouri; and the St. Louis Cathedral, New Orleans were also named for the king. The French royal Order of Saint Louis (1693–1790 and 1814–1830), the Île Saint-Louis as well as a hospital in the 10th arrondissement of Paris also bear his name. The national church of France in Rome also carries his name: San Luigi dei Francesi in Italian or Saint Louis of France in English. Also the Cathedral of St Louis in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, the Church of St Louis in Moscow, Russia, and rue Saint Louis of Pondicherry.

Port-Louis, the capital city of Mauritius, as well as its cathedral are also named after St. Louis, who is the patron saint of the island.

Thailand: Saint Louis Hospital, and Saint Louis Church in Sathon, Bangkok were named after St.Louis, the patron saint of the founder. The name "Saint Louis" also exists as the "Saint Louis neighbourhood" and Soi Saint Louis 1, 2 and 3 alley (Soi Sathon 11, 13 and 15, officially), which are the area within the hospital.

Notable portraits

A bas-relief of St. Louis is one of the carved portraits of historic lawmakers that adorns the chamber of the United States House of Representatives.

Saint Louis is also portrayed on a frieze depicting a timeline of important lawgivers throughout world history, on the North Wall of the Courtroom at the Supreme Court of the United States.[39]

A statue of St. Louis by the sculptor John Donoghue stands on the roofline of the New York State Appellate Division Court at 27 Madison Avenue in New York City.

The Apotheosis of St. Louis is an equestrian statue of the saint, by Charles Henry Niehaus, that stands in front of the Saint Louis Art Museum in Forest Park.

A heroic portrait by Baron Charles de Steuben hangs in the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Baltimore. An 1821 gift of King Louis XVIII of France, it depicts St. Louis burying his plague-stricken troops before the siege of Tunis at the beginning of the Eighth Crusade in 1270.

In fiction

  • Davis, William Stearns, "Falaise of the Blessed Voice" aka "The White Queen". New York, NY: Macmillan, 1904
  • Peter Berling, The Children of the Grail
  • Jules Verne, "To the Sun?/Off on a Comet!" A comet takes several bits of the Earth away when it grazes the Earth. Some people, taken up at the same time, find the Tomb of Saint Louis is one of the bits, as they explore the comet.
  • Adam Gidwitz, The Inquisitor's Tale


  1. ^ a b Olivier Bobineau. "Retour de l'ordre religieux ou signe de bonne santé de notre pluralisme laïc ?". Le Monde.fr. Retrieved 27 October 2015.
  2. ^ Vie de St Louis, ed. H.-F. Delaborde, Paris, 1899
  3. ^ a b "Saint Louis, King of France, Archdiocese of St. Louis, MO". Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  4. ^ Plaque in the church, Collégiale Notre-Dame, Poissy, France.
  5. ^ a b c "Louis IX". Encarta. Microsoft Corporation. 2008.
  6. ^ a b c d Fr. Paolo O. Pirlo, SHMI (1997). "St. Louis". My First Book of Saints. Sons of Holy Mary Immaculate – Quality Catholic Publications. pp. 193–194. ISBN 971-91595-4-5.
  7. ^ a b c "Goyau, Georges. "St. Louis IX." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 9. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 24 Feb. 2013". Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  8. ^ Shadis 2010, p. 17-19.
  9. ^ Goldstone 2007, p. 27-35.
  10. ^ Naomi Seidman, Faithful Renderings: Jewish-Christian Difference and the Politics of Translation, pp. 136–138
  11. ^ Goldstone 2007, p. 17.
  12. ^ Goldstone 2007, p. 11.
  13. ^ a b c "Crusades: Crusades of the 13th century". Encarta. Microsoft Corporation. 2008.
  14. ^ Tyerman, p. 787
  15. ^ a b c "Lives of Saints, John J. Crawley & Co., Inc". Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  16. ^ Dupuy 1993, p. 417.
  17. ^ Tyerman, pp. 789–798
  18. ^ a b "Bréhier, Louis. "Crusades." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 4. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908. 24 Feb. 2013". Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  19. ^ Jackson 1980, p. 481-513.
  20. ^ The Empire of the Steppes: A History of Central Asia. Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  21. ^ Denis Sinor – The Mongols in the West. Journal of Asian History v.33 n.1 (1999)
  22. ^ Aigle, Denise (2005). "The Letters of Eljigidei, H¨uleg¨u and Abaqa: Mongol overtures or Christian Ventriloquism?" (PDF). Inner Asia. 7 (2): 143–162. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
  23. ^ a b Magill & Aves, p. 606.
  24. ^ "The Pope Who Saved the Talmud". The 5 Towns Jewish Times. Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  25. ^ "Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/St. Louis IX".
  26. ^ a b c d e f g "Capetian Kings". Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  27. ^ Brown 1990, p. 810.
  28. ^ Cross & Livingstone, p. 1004.
  29. ^ Lock, p. 183.
  30. ^ Westerhof 2008, p. 79.
  31. ^ Gaposchkin, p. 28.
  32. ^ Gaposchkin, pp. 28–29.
  33. ^ Gaposchkin, pp. 28–30; 76.
  34. ^ a b Louis IX, Oxford Dictionary of Saints, (Oxford University Press, 2004), 326.
  35. ^ "Louis". The New Encyclopædia Britannica: Micropædia. 7 (15 ed.). 1993. p. 497. ISBN 9780852295717.
  36. ^ "Who We Are". Sisters of Charity of St. Louis. 2017. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
  37. ^ "Our Father and Patron St. Louis / St. Louis, King of France, 1214–1270 AD" St. Louis Handbook for Schools. Sisters of St Louis. p. 8.
  38. ^ "Our history". Sisters of St Louis. 2015. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
  39. ^ "US Supreme Court Courtroom Friezes" (PDF). Retrieved 19 February 2019.


  • Brown, Elizabeth A. R. (Autumn 1990). "Authority, the Family, and the Dead in Late Medieval France". French Historical Studies. 16 (4).
  • Cross, Frank Leslie; Livingstone, Elizabeth A., eds. (2005). The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0192802909.
  • Davis, Jennifer R. (Autumn 2010). "The Problem of King Louis IX of France: Biography, Sanctity, and Kingship". Journal of Interdisciplinary History. 41 (2): 209–225. doi:10.1162/JINH_a_00050.
  • Dupuy, Trevor N. (1993). The Harper Encyclopedia of Military History. HarperCollins.
  • Gaposchkin, M. Cecilia. (2008). The Making of Saint Louis: Kingship, Sanctity, and Crusade in the Later Middle Ages. Cornell University Press. ISBN 9780801476259.
  • Goldstone, Nancy (2007). Four Queens: The Provençal Sisters who ruled Europe. New York: Viking Penguin. ISBN 9780670038435.
  • Jackson, Peter (July 1980). "The Crisis in the Holy Land in 1260". The English Historical Review. 95 (376): 481–513. doi:10.1093/ehr/XCV.CCCLXXVI.481. ISSN 0013-8266. JSTOR 568054.
  • Jordan, William Chester (1979). Louis IX and the Challenge of the Crusade: A Study in Rulership. Princeton.
  • Le Goff, Jacques (2009). Saint Louis. University of Notre Dame Press. ISBN 0268033811.
  • Lock, Peter (2013). The Routledge Companion to the Crusades. Routledge. ISBN 1135131376.
  • Magill, Frank Northen; Aves, Alison, eds. (1998). Dictionary of World Biography: The Middle Ages. 2. Routledge. ISBN 1579580416.
  • Shadis, Miriam (2010). Berenguela of Castile (1180–1246) and Political Women in the High Middle Ages. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-312-23473-7.
  • Streyer, J.R. (1962). "The Crusades of Louis IX". In Setton, K.M. A History of the Crusades. Philadelphia.
  • Westerhof, Danielle (16 October 2008). Death and the Noble Body in Medieval England. Boydell Press. ISBN 1843834162.

External links

Louis IX of France
Born: 25 April 1214 Died: 25 August 1270
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Louis VIII
King of France
8 November 1226 – 25 August 1270
Succeeded by
Philip III
Alexander Stewart, 4th High Steward of Scotland

Alexander Stewart (died 1283), also known as Alexander of Dundonald, was 4th hereditary High Steward of Scotland from his father's death in 1246.

A son of Walter Stewart, 3rd High Steward of Scotland by his wife Bethóc, daughter of Gille Críst, Earl of Angus, Alexander is said to have accompanied Louis IX of France on the Seventh Crusade (1248–1254). In 1255 he was one of the councillors of King Alexander III, though under age.He was the principal commander under King Alexander III of Scotland at the Battle of Largs, on 2 October 1263, when the Scots defeated the Norwegians under Haakon IV. The Scots invaded and conquered the Isle of Man the following year, which was, with the whole of the Western Isles, then annexed to the Crown of Scotland.

Apotheosis of St. Louis

Apotheosis of St. Louis is a statue of King Louis IX of France, namesake of St. Louis, Missouri, located in front of the Saint Louis Art Museum in Forest Park. Part of the iconography of St. Louis, the statue was the principal symbol of the city between its erection in 1906 and the construction of the Gateway Arch in the mid-1960s.

Blanche of France, Infanta of Castile

Blanche of France (French: Blanche de France) (1253–1323) was a daughter of King Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence, and sister of King Philip III of France and Queen Isabella of Navarre.

Disputation of Paris

The Disputation of Paris, also known as the Trial of the Talmud, took place in 1240 at the court of the King Louis IX of France. It followed the work of Nicholas Donin, a Jewish convert to Christianity who translated the Talmud and pressed 35 charges against it to Pope Gregory IX by quoting a series of allegedly blasphemous passages about Jesus, Mary, or Christianity. Four rabbis defended the Talmud against Donin's accusations.

Eighth Crusade

The Eighth Crusade was a crusade launched by Louis IX of France against the city of Tunis in 1270. The Eighth Crusade is sometimes counted as the Seventh, if the Fifth and Sixth Crusades of Frederick II are counted as a single crusade. The Ninth Crusade is sometimes also counted as part of the Eighth. The crusade is considered a failure after Louis died shortly after arriving on the shores of Tunisia, with his disease-ridden army dispersing back to Europe shortly afterwards.

Fall of Haifa (1265)

In 1265, the army of Baibars the Mamluk captured Haifa, destroying its fortifications, which had been rebuilt by Louis IX of France, as well as the majority of the city's homes to prevent the European Crusaders from returning.

Fall of Krak des Chevaliers

The Crusader fortress of Krak des Chevaliers fell to the Mamluk sultan Baibars in 1271.

Baibars went north to deal with Krak des Chevaliers after the death of Louis IX of France on 29 November 1270.

La Neuville-en-Hez

La Neuville-en-Hez is a commune in the Oise department in northern France.

The commune is located 60 km north of Paris, less than 18 km east of Beauvais, 36 km west of Compiegne and 54 km south of Amiens.

The village formed around the twelfth-century castle built by Count Raoul de Clermont, some of which still remains.

It contains the Church of Our Lady of the Nativity, dating from the thirteenth century and the convent of Notre Dame de la Garde dating from the fifteenth century.

A statue to King Louis IX of France commemorates the legend that the saint king was born here.

Louis of France (1244–1260)

Louis of France (21 or 24 February 1244 – 11 January 1260) was the eldest son of King Louis IX of France and his wife Margaret of Provence. As heir apparent to the throne, he served as regent for a brief period.

Margaret of France, Duchess of Brabant

Margaret of France (1254–1271) was a daughter of Louis IX of France and his wife Margaret of Provence. She was a member of the House of Capet and was Duchess of Brabant by her marriage to John I, Duke of Brabant.

Odo, Count of Nevers

Odo of Burgundy (1230 – 4 August 1266) was Count of Nevers and Auxerre and the heir of Hugh IV, Duke of Burgundy. His mother was Yolande of Dreux. He died at Acre on 7 August 1266.He never inherited the duchy, due to his death before his father; Burgundy was thereafter ruled by Odo's brother Robert. Odo married Maud of Dampierre and had three daughters, all of whom became rulers of their parents' counties:

Yolande II, Countess of Nevers (1247–1280), married 1)Jean-Tristan, prince of France and count of Valois (son of Louis IX of France);and 2)Robert III of Flanders

Margaret, Countess of Tonnerre (1250–1308), married king Charles I of Naples

Adelaide, Countess of Auxerre (1251–1290)

Peter I, Count of Alençon

Peter I of Alençon (born 1251 in Holy Land - d. 6 April 1284 in Salerno, Italy) was the son of Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence. He became Count of Alençon in 1269 and in 1284, Count of Blois and Chartres, and Seigneur de Guise in 1272 and 1284. He was also Count of Perche.He was born in the Holy Land while his father headed the Seventh Crusade. Back in France, he lived in Paris until 1269 when his father gave him in appanage the County of Alençon.

He accompanied his father to Tunis during Eighth Crusade (1270), but this expedition was a fiasco, because of the dysentery epidemic that decimated the army of crusaders. His father and his brother Jean Tristan succumbed to the disease.

Back in France Peter married in 1272 Joan of Châtillon, which brought him the lands Blois, Chartres and Guise. They had two sons who did not live:

Louis (1276-7)

Philip (1278–79)In 1282, after the Sicilian Vespers, he went in Naples to rescue his uncle Charles I of Naples. He waged war on behalf of Charles, but died in Salerno in 1284. His body was taken to Paris, where he was buried, with his heart interred at the now-demolished church of the Couvent des Jacobins, also in Paris. After his death without surviving son, his portion of Alençon returned to the Crown. His widow did not remarry and sold Chartres in 1286 to King Philip IV the Fair. On her death Guise and Blois passed to her cousin Hugh of the House of Châtillon.

Psalter of Saint Louis

Two lavishly illustrated illuminated manuscript psalters are known as the Psalter of Saint Louis (and variants) as they belonged to the canonized King Louis IX of France. They are now in Paris and Leiden, and are respectively good examples of French Gothic and English Romanesque illumination.

Robert, Count of Clermont

Robert of Clermont (1256 – 7 February 1317) was created Count of Clermont in 1268. He was the son of King Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence. In 1272, Robert married Beatrice of Burgundy, heiress of Bourbon and had the following issue:

Louis I, le Boiteux (1279–1342), first Duke of Bourbon.

Blanche of Clermont (1281–1304); married in 1303 in Paris Robert VII, Count of Auvergne and Boulogne, grandmother of Joan I, Countess of Auvergne.

John of Clermont (1283–1316), Baron of Charolais; married c. 1309 Jeanne d'Argues, widow of Hugh, Count of Soissons, and had issue.

Mary of Clermont (1285–1372, Paris), Prioress of Poissy

Peter of Clermont (1287 – aft. 1330), Archdeacon of Paris

Margaret of Clermont (1289–1309, Paris); married firstly, in 1305, Raymond Berengar of Andria, and secondly, in 1308, John I, Marquis of Namur.During his first joust, in 1279, Robert suffered head injuries which rendered him an invalid for the remainder of his life.Robert is considered the founder of the House of Bourbon, a family which, with the passing of centuries came to govern as Kings of Navarre (1572-1830), Kings of France (1589–1848; due to the extinction of all legitimate agnatic progeny of all his elder brothers), Kings of Spain (1700–present), Kings of the Two Sicilies (1735–1860), Dukes of Parma (1748–1796 and 1847–1859) and grand dukes of Luxembourg (1964–present).

Robert's godfather, chosen by Louis IX, was Humbert of Romans, the Dominican Master of the Order at the time of Robert's birth.Robert is mentioned in the prologue of the Coutumes de Beauvaisis by Philippe de Beaumanoir.He was buried in the now-demolished church of the Couvent des Jacobins in Paris.

Robert is a supporting character in Les Rois maudits (The Accursed Kings), a series of French historical novels by Maurice Druon. He was portrayed by Alexandre Rignault in the 1972 French miniseries adaptation of the series, and by Ioan Siminie in the 2005 adaptation.

Robert II, Duke of Burgundy

Robert II of Burgundy (1248 – 21 March 1306) was Duke of Burgundy between 1272 and 1306. Robert was the third son of duke Hugh IV and Yolande of Dreux.He married Agnes, youngest daughter of Louis IX of France, in 1279 and had the following issue:

Hugh V, Duke of Burgundy (1282–1315)

Blanche (1288–1348), married Edward, Count of Savoy

Margaret (1290–1315), married king Louis X of France

Joan (1293–1348), married count of Maine and Valois, king Philip VI of France

Odo IV, Duke of Burgundy (1295–1350)

Louis, Prince of Achaea (1297–1316), married Matilda of Hainaut

Mary (1298–1336) married Edward I, Count of Bar

Robert, Count of Tonnerre (1302–1334), married Joanna, heiress of TonnerreIn 1284, Robert was invested with the duchy of Dauphiné by Rudolf of Habsburg. This was followed by two years of warfare which was ended when King Philip IV of France paid Robert 20,000 livres tournois to renounce his claim to the Dauphiné.Robert ended the practice of giving away parts of the Burgundian estate to younger sons and as dowries to the daughters. From then on, the whole duchy, however already diminished by earlier dowries, passed unfragmented to the eldest son.

Robert de Sorbon

Robert de Sorbon (French: [sɔʁbɔ̃]; 9 October 1201 – 15 August 1274) was a French theologian, the chaplain of Louis IX of France, and founder of the Sorbonne college in Paris.

Siege of Damietta (1249)

The Siege of Damietta of 1249 was part of the Seventh Crusade.

Louis IX of France landed at Damietta in 1249. Egypt would, Louis thought, provide a base from which to attack Jerusalem, and its wealth and supply of grain would keep the crusaders fed and equipped. On June 6 Damietta was taken with little resistance from the Egyptians, who withdrew further up the Nile. Louis was able to build a stockade for the whole Crusade camp with the wood from 24 captured Egyptian trebuchets. The flooding of the Nile had not been taken into account, however, and it soon grounded Louis and his army at Damietta for six months, where the knights sat back and enjoyed the spoils of war. Louis ignored the agreement made during the Fifth Crusade that Damietta should be given to the Kingdom of Jerusalem, now a rump state in Acre, but he did set up an archbishopric there (under the authority of the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem) and used the city as a base to direct military operations against the Muslims of Syria.

Treaty of Paris (1259)

The Treaty of Paris (also known as the Treaty of Albeville) was a treaty between Louis IX of France and Henry III of England, agreed to on 4 December 1259, ending 100 years of conflicts between the Capetian and Plantagenet dynasties.


The term écu (French pronunciation: ​[eky]) or crown may refer to one of several French coins. The first écu was a gold coin (the écu d'or) minted during the reign of Louis IX of France, in 1266. Écu (from Latin scutum) means shield, and the coin was so called because its design included the coat of arms of France. The word is related to scudo and escudo. The value of the écu varied considerably over time, and silver coins (known as écu d'argent) were also introduced.

Ancestors of Louis IX of France
8. Louis VII of France
4. Philip II of France
9. Adela of Champagne
2. Louis VIII of France
10. Baldwin V of Hainaut
5. Isabella of Hainaut
11. Margaret I of Flanders
1. Louis IX of France
12. Sancho III of Castile
6. Alfonso VIII of Castile
13. Blanche of Navarre
3. Blanche of Castile
14. Henry II of England
7. Eleanor of England
15. Eleanor of Aquitaine
Merovingians (486–751)
Robertians and Bosonids (751–987)
House of Capet (987–1328)
House of Valois (1328–1589)
House of Lancaster (1422–1453)
House of Bourbon (1589–1792)
First Republic (1792–1804)
First Empire (1804–1815)
Bourbon Restoration (1815–1830)
July Monarchy (1830–1848)
Second Republic (1848–1852)
Second Empire (1852–1870)
Government of National Defense (1870–1871)
Third Republic (1871–1940)
Vichy France (1940–1944)
Provisional Government (1944–1947)
Fourth Republic (1947–1958)
Fifth Republic (1958–present)

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