1423 - 1483
|1. ||Louis XI King Of FRANCE was born 03 Jul 1423, Bourges (son of Charles VII King Of FRANCE and Marie Of ANJOU); died Between 24 and 30 Aug 1483; was buried , Notre-Dame de Clery, Montils. |
Excerpt from Wikipedia:
Louis XI the Prudent (French: Louis XI le Prudent) (July 3, 1423 ? August 30, 1483), also informally nicknamed l'universelle aragne (old French for "universal spider"), or the "Spider King," was King of France (1461?1483). He was the son of Charles VII of France and Mary of Anjou, a member of the Valois Dynasty, grandson of Charles VI and Isabeau de BaviËre and one of the most successful kings of France in terms of uniting the country. His 22-year reign was marked by political machinations, which earned him his nickname.
His scheming and love for intrigue made him many enemies, in particular those who bore the name "Charles":
Charles VII, his own father,
Charles de Valois, Duc de Berry, his brother, and
Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, who was to be his greatest foe.
Louis is known to have been shrewd and often vicious. But, in curbing the power of the dukes, he re-established the power of the monarchy, and ensured the survival of the French nation itself. For all his diabolical qualities, he used them to create tremendous good for his country.
He was born at Bourges, Cher in 1423, during the period when the English held northern France. His father Charles the Dauphin (or "crown prince") held only the centre and south. Louis was the grandson of the strong-willed Yolande of Aragon, the princess who was the driving force in saving France from the English. Louis despised his father, regarding him as a weakling. His marriage on June 24, 1436 to Margaret of Scotland, daughter of King James I of Scotland, was forced upon him and did not help their relationship.
In 1440 Louis was part of the uprising known as the Praguerie, which sought to submit Charles and install Louis as Regent. The uprising failed and Louis was forced to submit to the King, who forgave him. Louis continued soldiering. In 1444 he fought the Swiss at the Battle of Brise and was impressed by their military might.
Louis still loathed Charles however and on the 27 September 1446 he was ordered out of court and sent to his own province of DauphinČ, where he was ordered to establish order. Despite frequent summons by the King, the two would never to meet again. In DauphinČ, Louis ruled as King in all but name, continuing his intrigues against his father. On February 14, 1451, Louis, 27, married again, without Charles' consent. It was a strategic marriage to the eight-year-old Charlotte of Savoy (1443- December 1, 1483). It would not be consummated until she was fourteen and their children included:
Anne of France, (April, 1461 ? November 14, 1522), who became Duchess of Bourbon,
Jeanne (April 23, 1464 ? February 4, 1505), who became Duchess of Orleans,
Charles VIII of France (June 30, 1470 ? April 8, 1498)
Finally in August 1456, Charles sent an army to DauphinČ. Louis fled to Burgundy where he was granted refuge by Duke Philip the Good and his son Charles the Bold and settled in the castle of Genappe. King Charles was furious when Philip refused to hand Louis over; he knew the man and warned that the Duke was "giving shelter to a fox who will eat his chickens".
In 1461 Louis learned that his father was dying. He thus hurried to Reims to be crowned in case his brother, Charles, Duke de Berry, beat him to it.
The Entry of Louis XI. into Paris.--Facsimile of a Miniature in the "Chroniques" of Monstrelet, Manuscript of the Fifteenth Century (Imperial Library of Paris).
Louis as King
Ironically, after being such a thorn in his father's side, Louis pursued many of the same interests as he had done less successfully: submitting the powers of the Dukes and Barons of France. He justified this as sheer Realpolitik: it was now in his best interests, since he was now the king. He suppressed many of his former co-conspirators, who had thought him their friend. He became extremely fiscally prudent, whereas he had previously been lavish and extravagant. He wore rough and simple clothes and mixed with ordinary people and merchants.
A candid account of some of Louis' activities is given by the courtier, Philippe de Commines, in his memoirs of the period.
The Feud with Charles the Bold
Philip the Good was keen to start a Crusade and Louis gave him money in exchange for a number of territories including Picardie and Amiens. But Philip's son, Charles, was angry, feeling that he was being deprived of his inheritance. He joined a rebellion called the League of the Public Weal, led by Louis' brother Charles. Although the rebels were largely unsuccessful in battle, Louis was forced to grant an unfavourable peace as a matter of political expediency.
Upon becoming Duke in 1467, Charles seriously considered having an independent Kingdom of his own. But he had many problems with his territories, especially with the people of Liege who were constantly rising against him. Louis was their ally.
In 1468 Louis and Charles met in Peronne, but in the course of the negotiations they learned that the Liegois had again risen up and killed the Burgundian governor. Charles was furious. Commines and the Duke's other advisors had to calm him down for fear that he might hit the King. Louis was forced into a humiliating treaty, giving up many of the lands he had acquired and witnessing the siege of Liege in which hundreds were massacred.
But once out of Charles' reach, Louis declared the treaty invalid and set about building up his forces. His aim was to destroy Burgundy once and for all. War broke out in 1472, but Charles' siege of Beauvais and other towns were unsuccessful and he finally sued for peace. Commines rallied to the King's side and was made welcome.
Dealings with England
Meanwhile England was going through its own civil conflict known as the Wars of the Roses. Louis had an interest in this conflict since Charles the Bold was allied with the Yorkists who opposed King Henry VI. When the Earl of Warwick fell out with Edward IV, whom he had placed on the throne, Louis granted him refuge in France. He then encouraged Warwick to form an alliance with his bitter enemy, Margaret of Anjou, in order to restore her husband Henry VI to the throne. The plan worked and Edward was forced into exile, but he later returned and Warwick the Kingmaker was killed at the Battle of Barnet in 1471.
Now the undisputed master of England, Edward invaded France in 1475, but Louis was able to negotiate the Treaty of Picquigny by which the English gave up their claim to the French throne once and for all. Louis bragged that although his father had driven the English out by force of arms, he'd driven them out by force of p‚tČ, venison and good wine.
Settling with Charles the Bold
Louis still had to take care of the Duke of Burgundy and for this he employed the Swiss, whose military might was renown and which he had admired at Brise.
War broke out between Charles and the Swiss, but it was a disastrous campaign for the Duke and he was finally killed at the Battle of Nancy on January 5, 1477.
Louis had won over his sworn enemy. Other lords who still favoured the Feudal system gave in to his authority. Others like Jacques d'Armagnac, Duke of Nemours were executed.
Louis then started developing the Kingdom. He encouraged trade fairs and the building and maintenance of roads. He is seen as one of the first modern Kings of France, taking it out of the Middle Ages.
Louis XI was very superstitious. He surrounded himself with astrologers. Interested in science, he once pardoned a man sentenced to death on condition that he serve as a guinea pig in a gallstone operation.
By war, by cunning and with sheer guile, Louis XI overcame France's feudal lords, and at the time of his death in the chateau at Plessis-lez-Tours, he had united France and laid the foundations of a strong monarchy. He was however a secretive, isolated and reclusive man and few mourned his passing.
Louis XI died in August of 1483 and was interred in the Notre-Dame de ClČry Basilica  in ClČry-Sant-AndrČ in the Arrondissement of OrlČans. His wife Charlotte died a few months later and is interred with him. Louis XI was succeeded by his son, Charles VIII, who was thirteen, and his eldest daughter Anne of France became Regent.
Walter Scott's posthumous attack on Louis XI
Louis XI's undermining of the Feudal system and of the knightly code of Chivalry rooted in that system earned him the uncompromising posthumous enmity of the Nineteenth Century Romantic writer Sir Walter Scott.
Scott's foreword to the novel "Quentin Durward" constitutes a bitter attack on the French king, three and a half centuries dead at the time of writing (1831). Scott wrote that "(...) Among those who were the first to ridicule and abandon the self-denying principles in which the young knight was instructed, and to which he was so carefully trained up, Louis XI was the chief. That Sovereign was of a character so purely selfish - go guiltless of entertaining any purpose unconnected with his ambition, covetousness and desire of selfish enjoyment - that he seems almost an incarnation of the devil himself, permitted to do his utmost to corrupt our ideas of honour at the very source."
Later in the same essay, Scott compared Louis XI to Goethe's Mephistopheles.
Louis married Margaret Of SCOTLAND 24 Jun 1436. Margaret (daughter of James I King of SCOTLAND and Joan-Jane BEAUFORT) was born 1424, Linlithgow, Scotland; died 16 Aug 1445, Chalons; was buried , Chalons Cathedral. [Group Sheet]
Louis married Charlotte Of SAVOY 14 Feb 1451. Charlotte was born 1443; died 01 Dec 1483. [Group Sheet]
- Anne Of FRANCE was born Apr 1461; died 14 Nov 1522.
- Jeanne Of FRANCE was born 23 Apr 1464; died 04 Feb 1505.
- Charles VIII Of FRANCE was born 30 Jun 1470; died 08 Apr 1498.
|2. ||Charles VII King Of FRANCE was born 22 Feb 1403 (son of Charles VI King Of FRANCE and Isabeau Of BAVARIA); died 21 Jul 1461, Mehun-sur-Yevre. |
Excerpt from Wikipedia
Charles VII the Victorious, or the Well-Served (French: Charles VII le Victorieux, or le Bien-Servi) (February 22, 1403 ? July 22, 1461) was king of France from 1422 to 1461, a member of the Valois Dynasty.
Born in Paris, Charles was the fifth and only surviving son of Charles VI of France and Isabeau de BaviËre. Four of his elder brothers were dauphin in their turn but died without issue during the lifetime of their parents: Charles (1386), Charles (1392-1401), Louis, Duke of Guyenne (1397-1415) and Jean, Duke of Touraine (1398-1417). Charles, being the fifth dauphin, added to instability of the kingdom, which was under English attack. His survival was in doubt (apparently his own parents were not eager to protect him nor keep him as heir). There was also considerable doubt about his legitimacy, his mother being renowned for her affairs.
As a young man he was taken in by his future mother-in-law Yolande of Aragon, Queen of the Four Kingdoms, kept away from the royal court, and kept protected. On the death of his father in 1422, the French throne did not pass to Charles but to his infant nephew, King Henry VI of England in accordance with his father's Treaty of Troyes signed in 1420. The English right to the throne of France had been granted as part of the Treaty in an effort to put an end to the raging Hundred Years' War. Under the Treaty, King Henry of England ruled Northern France through a regent in Normandy; the Dauphin was disinherited and pronounced a bastard by Queen Isabeau. Charles and his advisors, who did not accept the treaty, set up court in a fortified castle at Chinon.
Without any organized French army, the English strengthened their grip over France until March 8, 1429 when Joan of Arc, claiming divine inspiration, urged Charles to declare himself king and raise an army to liberate France from the English.
One of the important factors that aided in the ultimate success of Charles VII was the support from the powerful and wealthy family of his wife Marie d'Anjou (1404-1463), particularly the mother-in-law the Queen Yolande of Aragon. Despite whatever affection he had for his wife, the great love of Charles VII's life was his mistress, AgnËs Sorel.
After the French won the Battle of Patay, Charles was crowned King Charles VII of France on July 17, 1429, in Reims Cathedral. Over the following two decades, King Charles VII recaptured Paris from the English and eventually recovered all of France with the exception of the northern port of Calais.
While Charles VII's legacy is far overshadowed by the deeds and eventual martyrdom of Joan of Arc, he did something his predecessors had failed to do by uniting most of the country under one French king and, starting with the general parliament at Orleans in 1439, creating for the first time a standing army, which would yield the powerful gendarme cavalry companies notable in the wars of the sixteenth century. He established the University of Poitiers in 1432 and his policies brought some economic prosperity to the citizens. Although his leadership was sometimes marked by indecisiveness, hardly any other leader left a nation so much better improved than when he came on the scene.
King Charles VII died on July 22, 1461 at Mehun-sur-YËvre, but his latter years were marked by an open revolt by his son who succeeded him as Louis XI.
Charles married Marie Of ANJOU 1422. Marie (daughter of Louis II Of Naples And ANJOU and Yolande Of ARAGON) was born 1404; died 1463. [Group Sheet]
|4. ||Charles VI King Of FRANCE was born 03 Dec 1368 (son of Charles V The Wise Of FRANCE and Jeanne DE BOURBON); died 21 Oct 1422. |
He was born in Paris, the son of King Charles V and Jeanne de Bourbon. At the age of eleven, he was crowned King of France in 1380 in the cathedral at Reims. He married Isabeau of Bavaria in 1385. Until he took complete charge as king in 1388, France was ruled by his uncle, Philip the Bold.
Charles VI was known both as Charles the Well Beloved and later as Charles the Mad, since, beginning in his mid-twenties, he experienced bouts of psychosis. These fits of madness would recur for the rest of his life. Based on his symptoms, doctors believe the king may have suffered from schizophrenia, porphyria or Bipolar disorder.
 The King goes mad
His first known fit occurred in 1392 when his friend and advisor, Olivier de Clisson, was the victim of an attempted murder. Although Clisson survived, Charles was determined to punish the would-be assassin Pierre de Craon who had taken refuge in Brittany. Contemporaries said Charles appeared to be in a "fever" to begin the campaign and appeared disconnected in his speech. Charles set off with an army on July 1, 1392. The progress of the army was slow, nearly driving Charles into a frenzy of impatience.
While travelling through a forest on a hot August morning, a barefoot man dressed in rags rushed up to the King's horse and grabbed his bridle. "Ride no further, noble King!" he yelled. "Turn back! You are betrayed!" The king's escorts beat the man back but did not arrest him, and he followed the procession for a half-hour, repeating his cries.
The company emerged from the forest at noon. A page who was drowsy from the sun dropped the king's lance, which clanged loudly against a steel helmet carried by another page. Charles shuddered, drew his sword and yelled "Forward against the traitors! They wish to deliver me to the enemy!" The king spurred his horse and began swinging his sword at his companions, fighting until his chamberlain and a group of soldiers were able to grab him from his mount and lay him on the ground. He laid still and did not react, falling into a coma. The king killed at least one knight in his delirium, and possibly more (the exact numbers differ in the chronicles from the time).
Charles' uncle Philip II, Duke of Burgundy (aka Philip the Bold) assumed the regency on the spot, dismissing Charles' advisers in the process. This was to be the start of a major feud which would divide the Kings of France and the Dukes of Burgundy for the next 85 years.
The king would suffer from periods of mental illness throughout his life. During one attack in 1393, Charles could not remember his name, did not know he was king and fled in terror from his wife. He did not recognize his children, though he knew his brother and councillors and remembered the names of people who had died. In later attacks, he roamed his palaces howling like a wolf, refused to bathe for months on end and suffered from delusions that he was made of glass.
 The Bal des Ardents
In January 1393, Queen Isabeau de BaviËre organised a party to celebrate the marriage of one of her ladies-in-waiting. The King and five other lords dressed up as wild men and danced about chained to one another. They were "in costumes of linen cloth sewn onto their bodies and soaked in resinous wax or pitch to hold a covering of frazzled hemp, "so that they appeared shaggy & hairy from head to foot"". In view of the obvious danger of fire, there was a ban on torches in the room. Nonetheless, the King's brother, Louis of Valois, Duke of OrlČans, approached with a lighted torch, according to some accounts teasing the dancers with it. One of the dancers caught fire and there was panic. The Duchesse de Berry, who recognized Charles, hid him under her dress and saved his life. Four of the other men perished. This incident became known as the Bal des Ardents (the 'Ball of the Burning Men').
Most accounts seem to agree that Louis' action was an accident; he was merely trying to find his brother. Be that as it may, Louis soon afterwards pursued an affair with the Queen and was murdered by his political rival John, Duke of Burgundy (aka John the Fearless) in 1407.
Charles' royal secretary Pierre Salmon spent much time in discussions with the king while he was suffering from his intermittent but incapacitating psychosis. In an effort to find a cure for the king's illness, stabilize the turbulent political situation, and secure his own future, Salmon supervised the production of two distinct versions of the beautifully illuminated guidebooks to good kingship known as Pierre Salmon's Dialogues.
 Dealing with England
Charles VI's reign was marked by the continuing war with the English (the Hundred Years' War). An early attempt at peace occurred in 1396 when Charles' daughter, the seven-year-old Isabella of Valois married the 29-year-old Richard II of England.
The peace in France did not last. The feud between the Royal family and the house of Burgundy led to chaos and anarchy. Taking advantage, Henry V of England led an invasion which culminated in 1415 when the French army was defeated at the Battle of Agincourt. In 1420, Charles -- now utterly incapacitated by his disease -- signed the Treaty of Troyes which recognized Henry as his successor, declared his son a bastard and bethrothed his daughter, Catherine of Valois, to Henry (see English Kings of France).
In fact there really were many doubts as to the Dauphin Charles' legitimacy, his mother being notorious for her affairs. He was also of a weak and feeble nature which caused conflict with both her and his own son, the future Louis XI.
Many people, including Joan of Arc, believed that the king only agreed to such disastrous and unprecedented terms under the mental stress of his illness and that, as a result, France could not be held to them.
Charles VI died in 1422 at Paris and is interred with his wife, Isabeau de BaviËre in Saint Denis Basilica.
He was eventually succeeded by his son Charles VII. Apparently Catherine of Valois passed Charles' mental illness onto her son, Henry VI. His inability to govern helped spark the Wars of the Roses.
Charles married Isabeau Of BAVARIA 17 Jul 1385. Isabeau (daughter of Stephen III Duke Of BAVARIA and Taddea VISCONTI) was born 1371; died 24 Sep 1435. [Group Sheet]
|5. ||Isabeau Of BAVARIA was born 1371 (daughter of Stephen III Duke Of BAVARIA and Taddea VISCONTI); died 24 Sep 1435. |
Isabeau de BaviËre (also Isabella of Bavaria-Ingolstadt; ca. 1370 ? September 24, 1435) was a Queen Consort of France (1385 - 1422) after marrying Charles VI of France, a member of the Valois Dynasty, on July 17, 1385. She assumed a prominent role in public affairs during the disastrous later years of her husband's reign.
Isabeau of Bavaria was the daughter of Stephen III of Bavaria-Ingolstadt and Taddea Visconti.
Her paternal grandparents were Stephen II, Duke of Bavaria, a son of Emperor Louis IV, and Elisabeth of Sicily (whose name Isabella received), daughter of king Frederick III of Sicily and his wife Eleonora of Anjou. Eleonora was herself a daughter of Charles II of Naples and Maria Arpad of Hungary. Maria was a daughter of Stephen V of Hungary and Elizabeth of the Cumans (whose namesake her great-granddaughter, and through that, ultimately queen Isabella became). Elizabeth was daughter of Koteny (Kuthens, Zayhan) of the Cumans, a chieftain apparently descending from the Kipchaks and lord of the clan of Kun which had settled to Hungary after Mongol pressure drove them westwards.
Her maternal grandparents were BarnabÚ Visconti, Lord of Milan and Regina-Beatrice della Scala. Regina was daughter of Mastino II della Scala, Lord of Verona from 1329 to 1351 and his wife Taddea di Carrara.
Isabeau of Bavaria was the prominent and unpopular queen of an unsuccessful reign. She assumed an unusually powerful role in government to fill the gap left by her husband's frequent bouts of insanity. Around this time she organised the disastrous Bal des Ardents, or 'Ball of the Burning Men'. She was named Regent due to her husband suffering greatly from what now is believed to have been schizophrenia, and she successfully replaced herself with a royal mistress, Odette de Champdivers. Her husband was never the wiser, and rarely made any public appearances.
Others who vied for power in the place of the King included the King's brother Louis of Valois, Duke of OrlČans, and their cousin John the Fearless, Duke of Burgundy. Queen Isabeau's strong partisanship for the Duke of OrlČans led to rumors of an extramarital affair. Orleans' bitter feud with Burgundy reached a crisis point when the former was assassinated in 1407. Bitter resentment continued and the late duke's supporters became known as the Armagnacs.
Henry V of England took advantage of French internal strife and invaded the northwest coast. He delivered a crushing defeat to the French at Agincourt. Nearly an entire generation of military leaders died or fell prisoner in a single day. John the Fearless, still feuding with Queen Isabeau, remained neutral as Henry V conquered towns in northern France.
Most of Isabeau's twelve children did not survive to adulthood. Shortly after her fifth and final son assumed the title of dauphin as heir to the throne, the sixteen-year-old future Charles VII of France negotiated a truce with John the Fearless in 1418. Armagnac partisans murdered John while the two met on a bridge under Charles's guarantee of protection.
The new Duke of Burgundy Philip the Good entered an active alliance with the English. With most of northern France under foreign domination, Isabeau agreed to the Treaty of Troyes in 1420. This arranged the marriage of her daughter Catherine of Valois to Henry V and assigned the French royal succession to Henry V and their children. Isabeau's detractors and the Dauphin's political enemies cited this treaty as evidence that he was not the legitimate son of Charles VI. The treaty did not have its intended effect on the French royal succession but did have an ultimate effect on English royal succession. Catherine's second marriage resulted in the eventual Tudor dynasty.
Both Charles VI and Henry V died within two months of each other in 1422. Charles VII, now fully grown, claimed that the Treaty of Troyes was illegal and assumed leadership of the Armagnac party, ruling what was left of central and southern France, and taking his father's former mistress, Odette de Champdivers, as his own.
Isabeau and her son Charles VII shared no apparent love for each other. Charles was to face a similar relationship with his own son Louis XI. Charles' principal female mentor was his childhood guardian Yolande of Aragon.
Isabeau moved to English-controlled territory and exerted no further influence over public affairs. She died in Paris in 1435 and is interred in the Saint Denis Basilica.
Posterity has not been kind to Isabeau of Bavaria. A popular saying late in her life was that France had been lost by a woman and would be recovered by a girl. Many took this to be a prediction of Joan of Arc.
In fairness to Isabeau it must be noted that her leadership confronted double prejudice as a woman and a foreigner. There are a few bright spots in her reign, such as her artistic patronage. Isabeau aided the era's most significant French author Christine de Pizan and sponsored artisans who developed innovative techniques in decorative arts.
|8. ||Charles V The Wise Of FRANCE was born 31 Jan 1338, Vincennes, Ile-de-France (son of John II King Of FRANCE and Bonne Of BOHEMIA); died 16 Sep 1380. |
Charles V the Wise (French: Charles V le Sage) (January 31, 1338 ? September 16, 1380) was king of France from 1364 to 1380 and a member of the Valois Dynasty. His reign marked a high point for France during the Hundred Years' War, with his armies recovering much of the territory ceded to England at the Treaty of Bretigny.
Charles was born at Vincennes, Śle-de-France, France, the son of King Jean II and Bonne of Luxembourg. Upon his father's succession to the throne in 1350, Charles became Dauphin. He was the first French heir to use the title, after the region of DauphinČ was acquired by his father.
The future king was highly intelligent but physically weak, with pale skin and a thin, ill-proportioned body. He made a sharp contrast to his father -- who was tall, strong and sandy-haired -- and gossip at the time suggested he was not Jean's son. Similar rumors would pursue Charles' grandson, Charles VII.
 The Regency and the Bourgeois Rising
King Jean was a brave warrior but a poor ruler who alienated his nobles through arbitrary justice and the elevation of associates considered unworthy. After a three-year break, the war resumed in 1355, with Edward, The Black Prince, leading an English-Gascon army in a violent raid across southwestern France. After checking an English incursion into Normandy, Jean led an army of about 16,000 south, crossing the Loire in September, 1356, attempting to outflank the Prince's 8,000 soldiers at Poitiers. Rejecting advice from one captain to surround and starve the Prince -- a tactic Edward feared -- Jean ordered a charge up a slope where the enemy forces were entrenched. In the subsequent Battle of Maupertuis (Poitiers), English archery all but annihilated the French cavalry, and Jean was captured. Charles led a battalion at Poitiers which withdrew early in the struggle; whether the order came from Jean (as he later claimed) or whether Charles himself ordered the withdrawal is unclear.
The outcome of the battle left many embittered at the nobility, who popular opinion accused of betraying the King, but Charles and his brothers escaped blame, and he was received with honor upon his return to Paris. The Dauphin summoned the Estates-General in October to seek money for the defense of the country. But the parliament, furious at what they saw as poor management, organized into a body led by Etienne Marcel, the Provost of Merchants (a title roughly equivalent to mayor of Paris today). Marcel demanded the dismissal of seven royal ministers, their replacement by a Council of 28, made of nobles, clergy and bourgeois, and the release of Charles II of Navarre, a leading Norman noble with a claim on the French throne who had been imprisoned by Jean for the murder of his constable. The Dauphin refused the demands, ordered the Estates-General to dismiss and left Paris.
A contest of wills followed. In an attempt to raise money, Charles tried to devalue to the currency; Marcel ordered strikes, and the Dauphin was forced to cancel his plans and recall the Estates in February, 1357. The Third Estate presented the Dauphin with a Grand Ordinance, a list of 61 articles that would have required the Estates-General to approve all future taxes, assemble at their own volition and elect a Council of 36 -- with 12 members from each Estate -- to advise the king. Charles eventually signed the ordinance, but his dismissed councilors took news of the document to King Jean, imprisoned in Bordeaux. The King renounced the entire ordinance before being taken to England by Prince Edward.
Charles made a royal progress through the country that summer, winning support from the provinces. Marcel, meanwhile, enlisted Charles of Navarre, who claimed his claim to the throne was at least as good as that of King Edward of England's. The Dauphin, re-entering Paris, won the city back.
Marcel, meanwhile, used the murder of a citizen seeking sanctuary to make an attack close to the Dauphin. Summoning a group of tradesmen, the Provost marched at the head of an army of 3,000, entered the royal palace and had the crowd murder two of the Dauphin's marshals before his eyes. Charles, horrified, momentarily pacified the crowd, but sent his family away and left the capital as quickly as he could. Marcel's action destroyed the Third Estate's support among the nobles, and the Provost's subsequent support for the Jacquerie undermined his support from the towns; he was murdered by a mob on July 31, 1358. Charles was able to recover Paris the following month; he later issued a general amnesty for all, except close associates of Marcel.
 The Treaty of Bretigny
Jean's capture gave the English the edge in peace negotiations. The King signed a treaty in 1359 that would have ceded most of western France to England and imposed a ruinous ransom of 4 million ecus on the country. The Dauphin (backed by his councillors and the Estates General) rejected the treaty, and King Edward used this as an excuse to invade France later that year. Edward reached Reims in December and Paris in March, but Charles, trusting on improved municipal defenses, forbade his soldiers from direct confrontation with the English. Charles relied on improved fortifications made to Paris by Marcel, and would later rebuild the Left Bank wall and built a new wall on the Right Bank that extended to a new fortification called the Bastille.
Edward pillaged and raided the countryside but could not bring the French to a decisive battle, and eventually agreed to reduce his terms. This non-confrontational strategy would prove extremely beneficial to France during Charles' reign.
The Treaty of Bretigny, signed on May 8, 1360, ceded a third of western France -- mostly in Aquitaine and Gascony -- to the English, and lowered the King's ransom to 3 million ecus. Jean was released the following October, his second son, Louis I of Anjou, taking his place as a hostage.
Though his father had regained his freedom, Charles suffered a personal tragedy. His three-year-old daughter, Jeanne, and his infant daughter Bonne died within two weeks of each other; the Dauphin was said at their double funeral to be "so sorrowful as never before he had been." Charles himself had been severely ill, with his hair and nails falling out; some suggest the symptoms are those of arsenic poisoning.
Jean proved as ineffective at ruling upon his return to France as he had before his capture. When Louis of Anjou escaped from English custody, Jean announced he had no choice but to return to captivity himself -- an action that, despite the cult of chivalry, seemed extreme to 14th century minds. Jean arrived in London in January 1364, became ill, and died the following April.
 King of France
Statue of Charles V of FranceCharles was crowned King of France in 1364 at the cathedral at Reims, France. The new king was highly intelligent but close-mouthed and secretive, with sharp eyes, a long nose and a pale, grave manner. He suffered from gout in the right hand and an abscess in his left arm, possibly a side-effect of an attempted poisoning in 1359. Doctors were able to treat the wound but told him that if it ever dried up, he would die within 15 days. "Not surprisingly," said historian Barbara Tuchman, "the King lived under a sense of urgency." His manner may have concealed a more emotional side; his marriage to Jeanne de Bourbon was considered very strong, and he made no attempt to hide his grief at her funeral or those of his children, five of whom predeceased him.
His reign was dominated by the war with the English, and two major problems: Recovering the territories ceded at Bretigny, and ridding the land of the Tard-Venus (French for "latecomers"), mercenary companies that turned to robbery and pillage after the treaty was signed. In achieving these aims, Charles turned to a minor noble from Brittany named Bertrand du Guesclin. Referred to as a "hog in armor," du Guesclin had fought in that province's bitter civil wars, and learned to fight guerrilla warfare. Du Guesclin defeated Charles II of Navarre in Normandy in 1364 and eliminated the noble's threat to Paris; he was captured in battle in Britttany the following year but quickly ransomed.
To attempt to rid the land of the Tard-Venus, Charles first hired them for an attempted crusade into Hungary, but their reputation for brigandage preceded them, and the citizens of Strasbourg refused to let them cross the Rhine on their journey. Charles next sent the mercenary companies (under the leadership of Du Guesclin) to fight in a civil war in Castile between Pedro the Cruel and his brother, Don Enrique of Trastamare. Pedro had English backing, while Enrique was supported by the French.
Du Guesclin and his men were able to drive Pedro out of Castile in 1365, but The Black Prince, now serving as his father's viceroy in southwestern France, took up Pedro's cause. At the Battle of N·jera (Navarette) in April, 1367, the English defeated Du Guesclin's army and took the Breton prisoner a second time. Despite the defeat, the campaign had destroyed several companies of Tard-Venus and given France a temporary respite from their depredations.
 The war resumes
The Black Prince's rule in Gascony became increasingly autocratic, and when Pedro defaulted on his debts after Najera, the Prince taxed his subjects in Guienne to make up the difference. Nobles from Gascony petitioned Charles for aid, and when the Black Prince refused to answer a summons to Paris to answer the charges, Charles judged him disloyal and declared war in May, 1369. Legally, Charles had no right to do this -- the French had given up sovereignty over Gascony under the Treaty of Bretigny -- but the king ignored this.
Instead of seeking a major battle, as his predecessors had done, Charles chose a strategy of attrition, spreading the fighting at every point possible. The French were aided by the navy of Castile (Du Guesclin had captured Pedro the Cruel by deceit in 1369 and turned him over to Enrique, who promptly killed his brother with a dagger) and by the declining health of the Black Prince, who had developed dropsy and quickly become an invalid. Where Charles could, he negotiated with towns and cities to bring them back into the French fold. Bertrand du Guesclin, appointed Constable of France in 1370, beat back a major English offensive in northern France with a combination of hit-and-run raids and bribery.
The English were crippled by the loss of major leaders and their own tendency to raid the countryside instead of embarking on major offensives. By 1374, Charles had recovered all of France except Calais and Aquitaine, effectively nullifying the Treaty of Bretigny. Peace, however, remained elusive; treaty negotiations began in 1374 but were never able to come up with more than extended truces, owing to Charles' determination to have the English recognize his sovereignty over their lands.
 Papal Schism
In 1376, Pope Gregory XI, fearing a loss of the Papal States, decided to move his court back to Rome after nearly 70 years in Avignon. Charles, hoping to maintain French influence over the papacy, tried to persuade Pope Gregory XI to remain in France, arguing that "Rome is wherever the Pope happens to be." Gregory refused.
The Pope died in March, 1378. When cardinals gathered to elect a successor, a Roman mob, concerned that the predominantly French college would elect a French pope who would bring the papacy back to Avignon, surrounded the Vatican and demanded the election of a Roman. On April 9, the cardinals elected Bartolomeo Prigamo, Archbishop of Bari and a commoner by birth, as Pope Urban VI. The new pope quickly alienated his cardinals by criticizing their vices, limiting the areas where they could receive income and even rising to strike one cardinal before a second restrained him. The French cardinals left Rome that summer and declared Urban's election invalid because of mob intimidation (a reason that had not been cited at the time of the election) and elected Cardinal Robert of Geneva as Pope Clement VII that September.
The French cardinals quickly moved to get Charles' support. The theology faculty of the University of Paris advised Charles not to make a hasty decision, but he recognized Clement as Pope in November and forbade any obedience to Urban. Charles' support allowed Clement to survive -- he would not have been able to maintain his position without the aid of the King -- and led to the Papal Schism, which would divide Europe for nearly 40 years. Historians have severely criticized Charles for allowing the division to take place.
Charles' last years were spent in the consolidation of Normandy (and the neutralization of Charles of Navarre). Peace negotiations with the English continued unsuccessfully. The taxes he had levied to support his wars against the English had caused deep disaffection among the working classes.
The abcess on the King's left arm dried up in early September, 1380, and Charles prepared to die. On his deathbed, perhaps fearful for his soul, Charles announced the abolition of the hearth tax, the foundation of the government's finances. The ordinance would have been impossible to carry out, but its terms were known, and the government's refusal to reduce any of the other taxes on the people sparked the Maillotin revolt in 1381.
The King died on September 16, 1380, and was succeeded by his twelve-year-old son, Charles VI.
While he was in many ways a typical medieval king, Charles V has been praised by historians for his willingness to ignore the chivalric conventions of the time to achieve his aims, which led to the recovery of the territories lost at Bretigny.
His successes, however, proved ephemeral. Charles' brothers, who dominated the regency council that ruled in the king's name until 1388, quarreled amongst themselves and divided the government. Charles VI, meanwhile, preferred tournaments to the duties of kingship, and his descent into madness in 1392 put his uncles back in power. By 1419, the country was divided between Armagnac and Burgundian factions and Henry V was conquering the northern part of France. The hard-won victories of Charles V had been lost through the venality of his successors.
April 8, 1350 to Jeanne de Bourbon (February 3, 1338 ? February 4, 1378)
Charles married Jeanne DE BOURBON 08 Apr 1350. Jeanne (daughter of Peter I Duke Of BOURBON and Isabelle DE VALOIS) was born 03 Feb 1338; died 04 Feb 1378. [Group Sheet]
|12. ||Louis I Of Naples And ANJOU was born 23 Jul 1339, Chateau de Vincennes (son of John II King Of FRANCE and Bonne Of BOHEMIA); died 20 Sep 1384, Bisellia. |
Louis I of Anjou (July 23, 1339, Ch‚teau de Vincennes, ? September 20, 1384, Biselia) was the second son of King John II of France and Bonne of Luxembourg. He was the Count of Anjou 1356?1360, Duke of Anjou 1360?1384, Count of Maine 1356?1384, Duke of Touraine 1370?1384, and titular King of Naples and Jerusalem and Count of Provence and Forcalquier 1382?1384.
Louis was present at the Battle of Poitiers (1356), in the battalion commanded by his brother Charles, the Dauphin. They hardly fought and the whole group escaped in the middle of the confrontation. Although humiliating, their flight allowed them to avoid capture by the English, who won the battle decisively. King John II and Louis' younger brother Philip were not so fortunate and were captured by the English, commanded by Edward, the Black Prince. Their ransom and peace conditions between France and England were agreed in the Treaty of BrČtigny, signed in 1360. Amongst the complicated items of the treaty was a clause that determined the surrender of 40 high-born hostages as guarantee for the payment of the king's ransom. Louis, already Duke of Anjou, was in this group and sailed to England in October 1360. However, France was not in good economic condition and further installments of the debt were delayed. As consequence, Louis was in English custody for much more than the expected six months. He tried to negotiate his freedom in a private negotiation with Edward III of England and, when this failed, decided to escape. On his return to France, he met his father's disapproval for his unknightly behavior. John II considered himself dishonored and this, combined with the fact that his ransom payments agreed to in the Treaty of BrČtigny were in arrears, caused John to return to captivity in England to redeem his honor.
From 1380 to 1382 Louis served as regent for his nephew, King Charles VI of France, but left France in the latter year to claim the throne of Naples following the death of Queen Joanna I. She had adopted him to succeed her, as she was childless and did not wish to leave her inheritance to any of her close relatives, with whom she had quarreled. While he was able to succeed her as Count of Provence and Forcalquier after her murder in 1382 by Charles of Durazzo (her second cousin), he was unsuccessful in regaining the Kingdom of Naples from Charles.
Louis married Marie Lady Of GUISE 1360. Marie (daughter of Charles Of BLOIS and Joanna Of BRITTANY) was born 1345; died 1404. [Group Sheet]
|14. ||John I Of ARAGON was born 27 Dec 1350 (son of Peter IV King Of ARAGON and Elionor Of SICILY); died 19 May 1396. |
- Also Known As: Juan I Of Aragon
John I (December 27, 1350 ? May 19, 1396), King of Aragon 1387-96, called Juan el Cazador in Spanish (the Hunter, in English, or el Descurat in Catalan) or el Amador de la gentileza (the Lover of Elegance, in English, or l'Amador de la Gentilesa in Catalan), John the Hunter, was the eldest son of Peter IV and his third wife Eleanor of Sicily, who was the daughter of King Pietro II of Sicily. He was born in Perpignan, in the province of Roussillon which at that time belonged to Aragon, and died during a hunt in forests near Foix‡ by a fall from his horse, like his namesake, cousin and contemporary of Castile. He was a man of insignificant character, with a taste for artificial verse.
Events of his reign
Once on the throne, John abandoned his father's relatively Anglophile policy and made an alliance with France. He continued Aragon's support for the Pope of the Avignon line, Clement VII, in the Western Schism. John also made an alliance with Castile, and confirmed in 1388 a treaty with Navarre fixing borders between these kingdoms.
In 1389-90, the Aragonese battled the troops of the Count of Armagnac, who was attempting to conquer the lands of the vassal kingdom of Majorca. The attack went from Embord· to Gerona. The invaders were defeated in 1390 by Aragonese troops commanded by the Infante don Martin, the king's brother (and successor).
During 1388-90, John gradually lost all lands of the Duchies of Athens and Neopatras in Greece.
In 1391, John promulgated legislation on Jews in different cities of Aragon. Also in 1391, his administration faced a revolt in the vassal kingdom of Sicily, where the population had proclaimed Louis of Durazzo as king.
John was a protector of culture of Barcelona. He established in 1393 the Consistor of Barcelona (jocs florals), imitating the same office in Toulouse.
Aragon had been attempting to subjugate Sardinia since the reign of James II, and gradually the Aragonese had conquered most of the island. However, in the 1380s, the remaining independent principality Arborea became a fortress of rebellion and the Aragonese were rapidly driven back by Eleanor Visconti Doria. The Aragonese continued in John's reign to attempt to suppress rebels in Sardinia and regain lost territories. However, during John's reign, practically the whole of Sardinia was lost.
John's reign was characterized by disastrous financial administration.
He died without sons, and was succeeded by his younger brother Martin. Two daughters, however, survived to adulthood.
John married Yolande Of BAR 1384. [Group Sheet]