Edward's paternal grandmother Eleanor of Provence was the second of four sisters, daughters of Count Raymond Berenger V of Provence and Beatrice of Savoy, who all became queens (for more information about them, see Nancy Goldstone's non-fiction book Four Queens: The Provencal Sisters Who Ruled Europe, and also Sherry Jones' forthcoming novel Four Sisters, All Queens). The eldest, Marguerite, married Louis IX of France in 1234 and was the mother of Philip III (and others); Eleanor married Henry III of England in 1236 and was the mother of Edward I (and others); Sanchia married Henry III's brother Richard of Cornwall, future king of Germany, in 1243, and was the mother of Edmund, earl of Cornwall; Beatrice married Louis IX's brother Charles of Anjou, future king of Sicily, in 1246, and was the mother of Charles, king of Naples (and others). Philip III, Edward I, Edmund of Cornwall, Charles of Naples and their siblings were thus all very closely related, being the offspring of one set of sisters and two sets of brothers.
It's the descendants of Charles, king of Naples (c. 1248/54 - 5 May 1309) whom I mainly want to talk about today. His father Charles of Anjou was crowned king of Sicily in 1266; the story of how he took the kingdom from Manfred, illegitimate son of the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II, and then lost it again to Manfred's daughter Constanza and her husband Pedro III of Aragon and died in exile, is a fascinating one. The other children of Beatrice of Provence (d. 1267) and Charles of Anjou (d. 1285) were: Beatrice (d. 1275), who married Philip de Courtenay, titular emperor of Constantinople, and whose only child Catherine married Philip IV of France's brother Charles of Valois; Blanche (d. 1270), who married Robert of Béthune, count of Flanders; Philip (d. 1277), titular king of Thessalonica; Isabella (d. 1304), who married László IV, king of Hungary.
Charles of Naples - first cousin once removed of Edward II, whose wedding to Isabella of France he attended the year before his death - had many titles: king of Albania, king of Naples, prince of Salerno, prince of Achaea (part of the Peloponnese peninsula in Greece), prince of Taranto (a port in Apulia, southern Italy), count of Provence and count of Anjou. He was not, however, king of Sicily as his father had been; the kingdom passed to Pedro III of Aragon and then to two of his sons and their descendants. He is known to history as Charles 'the Lame' (le Boiteux in French). In 1270, Charles married Marie of Hungary (c. 1257-1323), sister of László IV who married his sister Isabella. Two of Marie's sisters were queens of Serbia, while the fourth married the Byzantine emperor Andronikos II Palaiologos, whose second wife was Edward II's first cousin once removed Yolande of Montferrat. Charles of Naples and Marie of Hungary's many children, Edward II's second cousins, are the main focus of this post:
- Charles Martel, titular king of Hungary (1271-1295). The eldest son and named after his father Charles of Naples and his grandfather Charles of Anjou. Charles Martel ('Hammer') was seen by some as the successor of his mother's childless brother László IV of Hungary, though never ruled the country. His son Charles (or Károly in Hungarian) sent to Hungary as a child by his grandfather Charles of Naples in 1300, did successfully press the family's claim, however, and eventually ruled the country, and was also king of Croatia. Charles Martel married Clementia of Hapsburg (also d. 1295), one of the daughters of Rudolf, king of Germany and duke of Austria, Styria and Carinthia; their daughter Clemence married Louis X of France in 1315 and was the mother of the short-lived John I 'the Posthumous' of France. (Clementia of Hapsburg's brother Hartmann was betrothed to Edward II's sister Joan of Acre from 1278 to 1281, when he drowned in the Rhine.) Charles Martel died the month before his twenty-fourth birthday.
- Marguerite, countess of Anjou in her own right, countess of Valois (1273-1299). Marguerite took Anjou with her as dowry when she married Philip IV's brother Charles, count of Valois (1270-1325) in 1290 (his second wife was Marguerite's first cousin Catherine de Courtenay, titular empress of Constantinople, mentioned above; his third was Mahaut of Châtillon or of St Pol, whose sister Marie married Aymer de Valence, earl of Pembroke). Marguerite was the mother of Philip VI, the first Valois king of France, and through her daughter Jeanne, the grandmother of Edward III's queen Philippa of Hainault.
- Saint Louis of Toulouse (1274-1297). Elected bishop of Toulouse just a few months before his death at the age of twenty-three, the same age as his elder brother, having previously been elected archbishop of Lyon in 1294. Louis was canonised by Pope John XXII in April 1317, his feast day 19 August, the date of his death; the great-uncle after whom he was presumably named, Louis IX of France, had been canonised in 1297. For more info about him, see here.
- Robert 'the Wise', king of Naples, titular king of Sicily and Jerusalem, prince of Salerno, duke of Calabria, count of Provence, Forcalquier and Piedmont (1277-1343). The fourth child and third son of Charles of Naples and Marie of Hungary, and the eldest to outlive their father. I can hardly do justice to Robert's long and eventful life here, or to his contested claims to the throne of Jerusalem, which came from Marie of Antioch (d. 1277). Edward II tactfully addressed his kinsman as 'king of Sicily and Jerusalem' when he unsuccessfully tried to claim a share of the county of Provence from him in 1323. Robert married firstly Violante or Yolande, daughter of Pedro III of Aragon and Constanza of Sicily - two of her brothers really did reign as kings of Sicily - and secondly Sancha, daughter of Jaime, king of Majorca. His heir when he died was his granddaughter Jeanne or Joanna, whose mother was one of the many daughters of the prolific Charles of Valois, by his third wife Mahaut of Châtillon. The notorious, much-married and murdered Queen Jeanne is the subject of another of Nancy Goldstone's books.
- Philip, titular emperor of Constantinople, king of Albania, prince of Achaea, prince of Taranto, despot of Epirus*, lord of Durazzo** (1278-1333).
* a successor state of the Byzantine Empire in Greece and Albania
** a city in Albania.
I've mentioned Philip of Taranto before, as he sent a violist named Robert Daverouns to Edward II in 1316. In 1294 he married Thamar Angelina Komnena, great-niece of the Byzantine emperor Michael VIII Palaiologos (Edward II wrote to Michael's son Andronikus, and his cousin Empress Eirene, in 1314, asking them to help free Sir Giles Argentein). Philip and Thamar's marriage was not successful: Thamar, raised in the Orthodox faith, was forced to convert to Catholicism and renamed Caterina, and in 1309, Philip accused her of adultery with no fewer than forty noblemen, annulled their marriage and imprisoned her. She died in 1311. Philip then married, in 1313, his first cousin once removed Catherine of Valois, daughter of - who else? - Charles of Valois and his second wife Catherine de Courtenay, titular empress of Constantinople. Philip's children included: Jeanne, who married Oshin, king of Armenia; Marguerite, who married the titular duke of Athens; and Philip, despot of Romania, who married his first cousin Violante, daughter of Jaime II of Aragon, who had once been proposed as a bride for Edward III.
- Blanche, queen of Aragon (c. 1280-1310). Blanche married Jaime II, king of Aragon, in 1295. Jaime succeeded his brother Alfonso III, who was planning his marriage to Edward II's sister Eleanor when he died suddenly in 1291. He himself first married Sancho IV of Castile's eldest daughter Isabel, but had the marriage annulled when Sancho died in 1295, and married Blanche soon afterwards. Blanche's son succeeded as Alfonso IV in 1327; her grandson the future Pedro IV (b. 1319) was betrothed to Edward II's younger daughter Joan in 1325; Edward had previously made plans to marry his son and heir Edward III to Blanche and Jaime II's youngest daughter Violante (b. 1310). Edward II said in February 1325 that Jaime "is old and decrepit and it is not certain that he is not dead," although Jaime lived for another two years and nine months. After Blanche's death aged about thirty, Jaime married Marie de Lusignan, daughter of the king of Cyprus, and fourthly Elisenda de Montcada, daughter of an Aragonese nobleman.
- Raymond Berenger, count of Andria (1281-1307). Died unmarried.
- John, a priest (1283-1308), and Tristan, born and died 1284.
- Eleanor or Alienore, queen of Sicily (1289-1341). She married Fadrique (Frederick), king of Sicily, one of the sons of Pedro III of Aragon and Constanza of Sicily, whose sister Violante married her brother Robert 'the Wise'. Her children included Pedro, king of Sicily, and Constanza, who married firstly Henry of Lusignan, king of Cyprus, and secondly Leo IV, king of Armenia.
- Marie, queen of Majorca (1290-1346/47). Married in 1309 to Sancho I, king of Majorca, who died childless in 1324. His father was the brother of Pedro III of Aragon, of Isabel, who married Philip III of France, and of Violante, who married Alfonso X of Castile.
- Peter 'Tempesta', count of Eboli and Gravina (1291-1315). Died childless.
- John, lord of Durazzo, count of Gravina (1294-1336). (Another John.) In 1318 he married, as her third husband, Matilda of Hainault, after abducting her with the connivance of his brothers Robert and Philip, but their marriage was annulled for non-consummation in 1321. John married secondly Agnes of Périgord, by whom he had three sons.
- Beatrice, Countess of Andria (1295-1335). She married firstly the decades-older Azzo VIII d'Este, marchese of Ferrara, who died in January 1308 when she was still barely pubescent, and secondly Bertrand III des Baux, count of Andria, with whom she had one daughter.
Interesting! (But shouldn't Melusine be in here somewhere?) :)
Darn! I *knew* I'd forgotten someone! :-)
Edward seems to have been related to just about everyone who was anyone in Europe :-) How you keep track of it all is amazing. I wonder if Edward himself ever got confused by the relationships and had to be helped out by a clerk?
Thanks, Carla! I seem to have a good memory for his family relations, somehow...:-)
Yes, probably, because it must have got really confusing. I suppose at least he could address every royal as 'cousin' without being more specific. :)
A very good memory Kathryn! and once again, well-researched!
And I'd love to know if your site had many hits after the 'Braveheart' documentary:>
Those relations are like Amercian cheese pizza - you get hold of a bit of cheese and half of the pizza will cling to it. :)
So Styria and Carinthia is the English version of Steiermark and Kärnten. Styria sounds like a place where vampires may live while 'Steiermark' certainly doesn't give that vibe.
Those new verification words, though .... vampire or devil names for sure. :P
Thanks, Anerje! :)
Oooh, I forgot to check it then. :( Braveheart was on TV in the US a few days ago and I got something like 70 hits in 2 hours for 'Wallace and Isabella' stuff. :/
Hehe, Gabriele! :) I didn't know the German name Steiermark, though have heard Kärnten a few times.
Word verifs can get really long and complicated. :)
Antonia Fraser's biography says that Mary Queen of Scots was in the habit of addressing most of the Scots nobility as 'cousin', because nearly all of them were. Edward II may have done the same.
Yes, he mostly did, Carla - the English nobility and European royalty were almost all 'cousin'. :)
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