World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Geoffrey V, count of Anjou

Article Id: WHEBN0009433326
Reproduction Date:

Title: Geoffrey V, count of Anjou  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: England and King David I
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Geoffrey V, count of Anjou

"Geoffrey of Anjou" redirects here. For other uses, see Geoffrey of Anjou (disambiguation).
Geoffrey Plantagenet
Duke of the Normans
Count of Anjou, Maine and Mortain

Enamel effigy of Geoffrey Plantagenet, Count of Anjou on his tomb at Le Mans. His decorated shield shows the early origins of the Royal Arms of England.
Count of Anjou
Reign 1129 – 7 September 1151
Predecessor Fulk V the Younger
Successor Henry I Curtmantle
Consort of England (Disputed)
Reign 7 April 1141 – 1 November 1141
Predecessor Matilda of Boulogne
Successor Matilda of Boulogne
Spouse Matilda of England
Issue
Henry II of England
Geoffrey, Count of Nantes
William X, Count of Poitou
House House of Plantagenet
Father Fulk of Jerusalem
Mother Ermengarde of Maine
Born (1113-08-24)24 August 1113
Died 7 September 1151(1151-09-07) (aged 38)
Château-du-Loir, France
Burial Le Mans Cathedral, Le Mans

Geoffrey V (24 August 1113 – 7 September 1151), called the Handsome (French: le Bel) and Plantagenet, was the Count of Anjou, Touraine, and Maine by inheritance from 1129 and then Duke of Normandy by conquest from 1144. By his marriage to the Empress Matilda, daughter and heiress of Henry I of England, Geoffrey had a son, Henry Curtmantle, who succeeded to the English throne and founded the Plantagenet dynasty to which Geoffrey gave his nickname.

Early life

Geoffrey was the elder son of Fulk V of Anjou and Eremburga de La Flèche, daughter of Elias I of Maine. He was named after his great-grandfather Geoffrey II, Count of Gâtinais Geoffrey received his nickname from the yellow sprig of broom blossom (genêt is the French name for the planta genista, or broom shrub) he wore in his hat. King Henry I of England, having heard good reports on Geoffrey's talents and prowess, sent his royal legates to Anjou to negotiate a marriage between Geoffrey and his own daughter, Matilda. Consent was obtained from both parties, and on 10 June 1128 the fifteen-year-old Geoffrey was knighted in Rouen by King Henry in preparation for the wedding.

Marriage

In 1128 Geoffrey married Empress Matilda, the daughter and heiress of King Henry I of England by his first wife Edith of Scotland, and widow of Henry V, Holy Roman Emperor. The marriage was meant to seal a peace between England/Normandy and Anjou. She was eleven years older than Geoffrey, and very proud of her status as an Empress (as opposed to being a mere Countess). Their marriage was a stormy one with frequent long separations, but she bore him three sons and survived him.

Count of Anjou

The year after the marriage Geoffrey's father left for Jerusalem (where he was to become king), leaving Geoffrey behind as count of Anjou. John of Marmoutier describes Geoffrey as handsome, red-headed, jovial, and a great warrior; however, Ralph of Diceto alleges that his charm camouflaged a cold and selfish character.

When King Henry I died in 1135, Matilda at once entered Normandy to claim her inheritance. The border districts submitted to her, but England chose her cousin Stephen of Blois for its king, and Normandy soon followed suit. The following year, Geoffrey gave Ambrieres, Gorron, and Chatilon-sur-Colmont to Juhel de Mayenne, on condition that he help obtain the inheritance of Geoffrey's wife. In 1139 Matilda landed in England with 140 knights, where she was besieged at Arundel Castle by King Stephen. In the "Anarchy" which ensued, Stephen was captured at Lincoln in February, 1141, and imprisoned at Bristol. A legatine council of the English church held at Winchester in April 1141 declared Stephen deposed and proclaimed Matilda "Lady of the English". Stephen was subsequently released from prison and had himself recrowned on the anniversary of his first coronation.

During 1142 and 1143, Geoffrey secured all of Normandy west and south of the Seine, and, on 14 January 1144, he crossed the Seine and entered Rouen. He assumed the title of Duke of Normandy in the summer of 1144. In 1144, he founded an Augustine priory at Chateau-l'Ermitage in Anjou. Geoffrey held the duchy until 1149, when he and Matilda conjointly ceded it to their son, Henry, which cession was formally ratified by King Louis VII of France the following year.

Geoffrey also put down three baronial rebellions in Anjou, in 1129, 1135, and 1145–1151. He was often at odds with his younger brother, Elias, whom he had imprisoned until 1151. The threat of rebellion slowed his progress in Normandy, and is one reason he could not intervene in England. In 1153, the Treaty of Wallingford allowed Stephen should remain King of England for life and that Henry, the son of Geoffrey and Matilda should succeed him.

Death

Geoffrey died suddenly on 7 September 1151. According to John of Marmoutier, Geoffrey was returning from a royal council when he was stricken with fever. He arrived at Château-du-Loir, collapsed on a couch, made bequests of gifts and charities, and died. He was buried at St. Julien's Cathedral in Le Mans France.

Children

Geoffrey and Matilda's children were:

  1. Henry II of England (1133–1189)
  2. Geoffrey, Count of Nantes (1 June 1134 Rouen- 26 July 1158 Nantes) died unmarried and was buried in Nantes
  3. William X, Count of Poitou (1136–1164) died unmarried

Geoffrey also had illegitimate children by an unknown mistress (or mistresses): Hamelin; Emme, who married Dafydd Ab Owain Gwynedd, Prince of North Wales; and Mary, who became a nun and Abbess of Shaftesbury and who may be the poetess Marie de France. Adelaide of Angers is sometimes sourced as being the mother of Hamelin.

Heraldry

The first reference to Norman heraldry was in 1128, when Henry I of England knighted his son-in-law Geoffrey and granted him a badge of gold lions (or leopards) on a blue background. (A gold lion may already have been Henry's own badge.) Henry II used two gold lions and two lions on a red background are still part of the arms of Normandy. Henry's son, Richard I, added a third lion to distinguish the arms of England.

Fictional portrayals

Geoffrey was portrayed by actor Bruce Purchase in the 1978 BBC TV series The Devil's Crown, which dramatised the reigns of his son and grandsons in England.

Geoffrey is an important character in Sharon Penman's novel When Christ and His Saints Slept, which deals with the war between his wife and King Stephen. The novel dramatizes their stormy marriage and Geoffrey's invasion of Normandy on his wife's behalf.

Ancestors

See also

Normandy portal
  • John of Marmoutier

References

  • Jim Bradbury, "Geoffrey V of Anjou, Count and Knight", in The Ideals and Practice of Medieval Knighthood III
  • Charles H. Haskins, "Normandy Under Geoffrey Plantagenet", The English Historical Review, volume 27 (July 1912), pp. 417–444

External links

  • Geoffrey V, Count of Anjou At Find A Grave
Geoffrey Plantagenet
Born: 24 August 1113 Died: 7 September 1151
French nobility
Preceded by
Fulk V
Count of Maine
1126–1151
Succeeded by
Elias II
Count of Anjou
1129–1151
Succeeded by
Henry II
Preceded by
Eustace
Count of Mortain
1141–1151
Preceded by
Stephen
Duke of Normandy
1144–1150
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.