Adelicia of Louvain

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Adeliza van Leuven

Also Known As: "Adelicia of Louvain (Leuven", "Löwen)", "Adela", "Aleidis", "Adèle", "Aelis", "Aleliza", "Adelheid van Leuven", "Adelheid of Brabant", "'Fair Maid of Brabant' Adeliza 'Adela' of Louvain", "Adel; Adelicia de Louven; Adelisa; Adelis; Lucy; Adela of Brabant;"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: Leuven, Flemish Region, Belgium
Death: Died in Flanders, Brabant, Belgium
Place of Burial: Affligem Abbey, Brabant, Belgium
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Godfried I, duke of Lower Lorraine and Ida of Namur(Chiny) van Leuven
Wife of Henry I "Beauclerc", King of England and William "Stronghand" d'Aubigny, 1st Earl of Arundel
Mother of Alice d'Aubigny; Agnes d'Aubigny of Arundel; William IV d'Aubigny 2nd Earl of Arundel & Sussex; Olivia II d'Aubigny; Agatha d'Aubigny of Arundel and 4 others
Sister of Hendrik van Leuven; Ida van Leuven; Godfried II van Leuven, hertog van Neder-Lotharingen; Albert Comte de Namur and Clarissa van Brabant
Half sister of Jocelin of Lorraine, 4th Baron de Percy

Occupation: Queen of England - See http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Adeliza_of_Louvain, queen consort of the Kingdom of England from 1121 to 1135, the second wife of Henry I, Queen of England, Princess of Brabant, FAIR MAID OF BRABARD, 2nd wife of Henry I
Managed by: Terry Jackson (Switzer)
Last Updated:

About Adelicia of Louvain

From Wikipedia (English):

Adeliza of Louvain, sometimes known in England as Adelicia of Louvain, also called Adela and Aleidis; (c. 1103 – 23 April 1151) was Queen of England from 1121 to 1135, as the second wife of King Henry I. She was the daughter of Godfrey I, Count of Louvain.

Early life and family

Adeliza of Louvain was born in 1105 in Louvain, present-day Belgium. She was renowned for her beauty, reflected in the epithet ‘the fair maiden of Brabant.’ The chronicler Henry of Huntingdon also mentions Adeliza’s beauty in an interlude in his Historia Anglorum stating, “A jewel grows pale on you, a crown does not shine. Put adornment aside, for nature provides your adornment...”

Her father was Godfrey I, Count of Louvain (1095-1139), Landgrave of Brabant, and Duke of Lower Lotharingia (1106-1128), an ally of Henry V, Holy Roman Emperor. After the death of Adeliza’s mother, Ida of Chiny, Godfrey married Clementia of Burgundy, the mother of Baldwin VII, Count of Flanders who had fought with the French against the Normans in 1118. Adeliza's brother, Joscelin of Louvain, married the heiress to the Percy fortune. He is often referred to as an “opportunist.”

From Wikipedia (French):

Adélaïde de Louvain (également appelée Adelicia, Adèle, Aelis ou Aleliza) (, abbaye d'Affligem), est la seconde épouse du roi d'Angleterre Henri Ier Beauclerc († 1135) de 1121 à 1135.

Biographie

Adélaïde de Louvain est la fille de Godefroi le Barbu, duc de Basse-Lotharingie, landgrave de Brabant, comte de Louvain et de Bruxelles, et de sa première épouse, Ide de Namur.

Elle épouse Henri Ier d'Angleterre, dit Beauclerc († 1135), le 24 janvier 1121 alors qu’elle a dix-huit ans et son mari cinquante-trois. Elle est couronnée le jour même ou le lendemain à Windsor. On pense généralement qu’Henri ne l’épouse que pour avoir un héritier mâle1. Bien qu’il soit le monarque britannique à avoir engendré le plus grand nombre de bâtards, son seul héritier légitime, Guillaume Adelin l’a précédé dans la mort, noyé dans le naufrage de la Blanche-Nef le 25 novembre 1120. En plus de lui donner la possibilité d'engendrer un fils, ce mariage renforce ses liens diplomatiques avec l'empire allemand.

Adélaïde, contrairement aux précédentes reines d'Angleterre, ne prend pratiquement pas part à la politique anglo-normande. Elle n'assure jamais la régence et ne joue aucun rôle à la cour du roi. Comme part de sa dot, elle reçoit, entre autres, le comté de Shropshire, qu'elle administre avec sa propre maison. Ses deux premiers chanceliers, qu'elle a fait venir de Lorraine, se voit confier un évêché durant le règne d'Henri Ier. Geoffroy devient évêque de Bath en 1123 et Simon, évêque de Worcester en 1125.

Bien que le rôle d’Adélaïde de Louvain soit, au cours de son mariage, à la différence des autres reines anglo-normandes, mineure dans la vie publique anglaise, elle laisse néanmoins sa marque en tant que mécène de la littérature et plusieurs œuvres, y compris le bestiaires que lui a dédié Philippe de Thaon. Elle aurait également commandité une biographie versifiée d’Henri Beauclerc, mais celle-ci n’a pas survécu. Ceci suggère qu'elle avait reçu une éducation littéraire dans sa jeunesse1. Toutefois, en près de quinze ans de mariage, le couple n'a aucun enfant.

À la mort de son mari le 1er décembre 1135, Adélaïde se retire quelque temps au monastère de Wilton, près de Salisbury. Elle est présente à la consécration du tombeau d’Henri à l’abbaye de Reading au premier anniversaire de sa mort1. En 1138 ou 1139, elle se remarie avec un ancien conseiller de son mari, Guillaume d’Aubigny, amenant avec elle une dot de reine, y compris le grand château et l'honneur d’Angleterre. De plus, Étienne de Blois fera d’Aubigny comte de Lincoln (1139-1140), puis comte d'Arundel (1141-1176).

Durant la guerre civile anglo-normande, Adélaïde accueille sa belle-fille Mathilde l'Emperesse lorsqu'elle débarque à Arundel en septembre 11391. Assiégée par une armée, elle obtient un sauf-conduit pour elle1. Elle et son mari restent loyal à Étienne dans la suite du conflit.

Sept des enfants d’Adélaïde et de Guillaume d’Aubigny devaient survivre jusqu’à l'âge adulte, au nombre desquels le comte Guillaume (II) d’Aubigny, père de Guillaume (III) d’Aubigny qui fut au nombre des vingt-cinq barons fidéjusseurs nommés dans la clause 61 de garantie de la Magna Carta. Anne Boleyn et Catherine Howard descendront également de ce mariage. Adélaïde est également devenue durant son deuxième mariage une bienfaitrice active de l’église, ayant donné, entre autres, des terrains à l’abbaye de Reading en l’honneur de son premier mari.

Adélaïde passera ses années dernières à l’abbaye d'Affligem où elle décède probablement le 24 mars 1151. Elle est enterrée à côté de son père dans l’église de cette abbaye où elle est restée jusqu’à la Révolution.

From Wikipedia (Dutch):

Adelheid van Leuven (Leuven, rond 1103 - Affligem, 23 april 1151) was een hoogadelijke 12e-eeuwse vrouw, die op jonge leeftijd koningin van Engeland werd.

Afkomst

Zij was van dochter van Godfried I van Leuven en van Ida van Namen. In 1121 huwde zij met Hendrik I van Engeland, nadat deze weduwnaar was geworden en geen mannelijke opvolger had. Het huwelijk met Adelheid bleef echter kinderloos. Adelheid werd mecenas van de letterkunde in Engeland.

From Rootsweb Post-em:

ID: I01917 Adeliza (Adela) of Louvain

ADELIZA of LOUVAIN (d. 1151), second queen of Henry I, was daughter of Godfrey ('Barbatus') of Louvain, duke of Brabant or Lower Lotharingia, descended in the male line from Charles the Great. The date of her birth is not known, but she is described as 'puella' in 1120. It was partly the report of her singular beauty (on which all the chroniclers agreed), and partly 'ob spem prolis adipiscendæ' (Gervase, i. 92, Rolls Ser.), that Henry, then in his fiftieth year (and a widower since May 1118), sought her hand in the above year. The contract of marriage was signed 16 April 1120; but, owing to the delay in the bride's arrival, the marriage itself did not take place till 24 Jan. 1120-1, the royal pair being crowned by the Archbishop of Canterbury six days later. It was on the occasion that Henry of Huntingdon (p. 243, Rolls Ser.) composed, in praise of her beauty, the elgiacs beginning:

Anglorum regina, tuos, Adeliza, decores

Ipsa referre parans musa stupore riget.


Of a gentle and retiring disposition she took no part in politics, but devoted herself to soothing and pacifying the disappointed and sullen king. She also interested herself greatly in the literary movement of the day, taking under her special patronage Geoffroi Gaimar, Philip du Than, the author of the 'Voyage de St. Brandan,' and David the Trouveur. On the death of Henry (1 Dec. 1135) she disappears from view; but it is probable that she retired to the castle of Arundel which, with its honour, had been left to her in dower for life. We find her residing there in 1139, when the empress landed in the neighbourhood, and was received into the castle 'ab Adeliza quondam regis Henrici regina tunc autem amica (_sic_) vel uxor W. Comitis de Arendell' (Gervase, ed. Stubbs, i. 110). The date of her marriage to William de Albini [see Albini, William de, d. 1176] is unknown; but as she left by him seven children, it cannot have been long after Henry's death. Her only recorded acts after 1139 are her foundation of the small priories of Pyneham and of the Causeway (De Calceto), and her benefactions to that of Boxgrove, all in Sussex, with her gifts to Henry's abbey of Reading and to the cathedral church of Chichester. To the latter she presented the prebend of West Dean in the year 1150, after which date there are no further traces of her. It is stated by Sandford that 'she was certainly buried at Reading;' but she has since been proved to have left her husband and retired to the abbey of Affigam near Alost, in Flanders, which had been founded by her father and uncle, and to which her brother Henry had withdrawn in 1149. Here she died in 24 March 1151 (_Annals of Margam_), and was buried: 'Affligenam delat vivendi finem facit ix. kal. Aprilis et sepulta est e grgione horologii nostri' (Sanderus, _Chorograhia Sacra Brabantiæ_). While lady of Arundel she had subenfeoffed her brother Joceline ('the Castellan') in the lordship of Petworth on the occasion of his marriage with the heiress of the Percies, by whom he was ancestor of the earls of Northumberland. [Stickland's Lives of the Queens of England (1840), vol. i.; Lawrence's Memoirs of the Queens of England (1838), vol. i.; Henry Howard's Howard Memorials (1834), X.; Butkens' Trophéesdu Brabant, vol. i.; Sanderus' Chorographia Sacra Brabantiæ.] J. H. R.* [Ref: DNB, Editors, Leslie Stephen & Sidney Lee, MacMillan Co, London & Smith, Elder & Co., NY, 1908, vol. i, pp. 137-8]

  • John Horace Round, M.A., LL.D., author of this article.

For precise source refs, p. 138 begins "prolis adipiscendæ"

From Rootsweb Post-em:

Adeliza's failure to bear Henry I a child during the 14 years of their marriage (1121-35) is indeed puzzling, given the number of children both legitimate and illegitimate he had previously sired, and given the fact that after her second marriage, at the age of about 35, she went on to produce 7 children. First and foremost we should remember that Henry and Adeliza married in 1121, when he was in his mid-fifties, a goodly age in that time. It appears from what little we can surmise about the birth dates of his illegitimate and legitimate children that the birth rate among them had already tapered off quite strikingly by 1120, and it's quite possible Henry was no longer quite as successful in reproductive mode as he had once been. Furthermore, I know of no historian who has stated that Henry and Adeliza ever became particularly close or devoted to each other, certainly no more so than Henry had been with his first wife the good Queen Edith-Matilda. If his marriage to Adeliza failed on that very basic level, her childlessness by him would not be quite so surpsising.

A dear friend of mind who is presently preparing the first scholarly biography of Adeliza's predecessor Edith-Matilda has opined, though not in print so far, that Henry perhaps was not terribly serious about fathering another child, but always expected, or at least hoped, that his legitimate daughter Matilda (the Empress) would succeed him. This was because he truly wanted the old Anglo-Saxon royal blood, which Matilda had through her mother, to return to the English throne. Certainly there is plenty of evidence that one of the reasons Henry usually cited to justify her succession to the throne when, in the last years of his life, he repeatedly got his barons to swear allegiance to Matilda as his heir, was that she carried the blood of the Old English kings as well as that of the Norman conquerors. Incidentally, as one example of the points of interest we can gather from carefully studying the lives of royal women in the medieval period: if Adeliza married William d'Aubigny at 35 and had 7 children, she was very obviously bearing them well after the age of 40. [Ref: [Ref: Utz 10 Jan 1999 msg to SGM quoting John Carmi Parsons]

One might argue it is possible that the second Earl was not her son, but William and the Queen dowager definitely had a child. CP 5:157, shows that their daughter Alice/Adelise married John, Count of Eu, Lord of Hastings, and cites the following charter from the Cartulary of Robertsbridge:

Ego Aliz Comitissa Augi concessi ... pro anima Willelmi Comitis Arundell' patris mei et Aliz Regine matris mee et pro anima domini mei J. Comitis Augi et Godefridi fratris mei ... et pro salute anime mee et omnium antecessorum et successorum ....


She calls Aliz the Queen her mother (interesting wording concerning how she addressed her husband). So, unless this is a case of immaculate deception, there were children, actually quite a few, depending on the account you believe (perhaps you meant she had no chidren by Henry I, which is true, but that would be the aged king's fault, not the fault of his young bride, who was younger than the King's daughter, the Empress Matilda).

Adeliza was the daughter of Godfrey of Louvain, duke of Lower Lotharingia and became, in her mid-to late teens, the second wife of Henry I in January of 1121, about three years after the death of Henry's first vafe Matilda. Adeliza had no children by Henry during the 15 years as his wife but had seven by her second husband, William dalbini. Henry's need for a wife in 1120 was made urgent by the death of his son and heir William in the White Ship disaster.

Most likely in 1138, three years after the death of Henry I, Adeliza married William d'Albini pincerna, son of the butler of first Henry and then Stephen. William d'Albini pincerna senior had solidly supported Stephen, as did William d'Albini pincerna, the younger until 1139. 'Their court was at Arundel (also refered to as the rape of Arundel).

By November 1139 the elder Wiliam was deceased and the younger William was earl of Lincoln, created by Stephen. (the editors of Regesta, Vol. III suggest the elder was dead by June 1139). Regesta, Vol. III show William as a frequent attestor for Stephen between 1135 and November, 1139.

Adeliza was an active monastic patron following Henry I's death. Her gifts were to Waltham Abbey (early Charters of Waltham Abbey), Reading Abbey (Reading Abbey Cartularies), the monks of St-Vincents, Knights Templars, Waverly Abbey and others. The only surviving Pipe Roll from Henry's reign indicates that in 1130 Adeliza held land in Oxfordshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire, Lincolnshire, Berkshire, Gloucestershire (Berkeley), London, Middlesex and Devon.

…Adeliza retired to the monastery of Affligem (favored by her father and brothers) shortly before her death in 1151. Another article has suggested that Adeliza, as a child, was educated at Affligem. [Ref: Utz 10 Jan 1999 msg to SGM]

Regards, Curt

From NewWorldEncyclopedia.org:

Adeliza of Louvain (also called Adela and Aleidis; 1103/1105 to April 23, 1151) was queen consort of the Kingdom of England from 1121 to 1135. She was the second wife of Henry I. After her husband's death, Adeliza gave shelter to her step-daughter, Empress Matilda, during the civil war between Matilda and Stephen of Blois for the throne of England.

The daughter of Count Godfrey I of Leuven, she married the much older Henry I shortly after the death of his only legitimate heir. After Henry's death, she married William d'Aubigny, 1st Earl of Arundel, who had been a chief adviser to the king. Seven of their children survived to adulthood. Although she had remained married to Henry for nearly 15 years, they were unable to produce an heir.

Her grandson, William d'Aubigny, 3rd Earl of Arundel was one of the 25 guarantors of the Magna Carta. She was a patron of the church and spent her final years at Affligem Abbey in Flanders, where she died at the approximate age of 46 or 48 years old.

Early life and first marriage

Adeliza was the queen consort to King Henry I of England.Adeliza was born around 1103 at Louvain, or Leuven, Belgium. Other than her being the daughter of Godfrey I of Leuven little is known of her life either before or after she married Henry I of England.

She married Henry, who was the son of William the Conqueror, on February 2, 1121. Her age at the time is uncertain, although she is thought to have been somewhere between 15 and 18 years old, while Henry was 53. Henry's main reason for marrying again was his desire for a male heir. However, despite his reputation for siring the largest number of illegitimate children of any British monarch, Henry had only one legitimate male heir, William Adelin, who had died before his father on November 25, 1120 in the White Ship disaster, the year before Henry married Adeliza.

Adeliza was reputedly an attractive and healthy young woman. This, together with her father's pedigree as duke of Lower Lotharingia made her a good candidate to serve as the prospective mother of a new heir to the British throne. However, no children were born during the almost 15 years of her marriage to Henry.

Adeliza donated lands to Reading Abbey, where Henry I was entombed in 1136Unlike some other Anglo-Norman queens, Adeliza played little part in the public life of the realm during her tenure as queen consort. Whether this is because of personal inclination or because Henry preferred to keep her nearby in hopes of her conceiving a male heir, is unknown. She did, however, leave a mark as a patron of literature. Several works, including a bestiary by Philip de Thaon, were dedicated to her. She is also said to have commissioned a verse biography of King Henry, but if she did, it is no longer extant.

When her husband died on December 1, 1135, Adeliza retired for a time to the monastery of Wilton, near Salisbury. She was present at the dedication of Henry's tomb at Reading Abbey on the first anniversary of his death, and endowed the abbey with lands in his honor.

Second marriage

Arundel Castle was part of Adeliza's dowry when she married William d'Aubigny. She later added apartments to the castle to accommodate the entourage of Empress Matilda, who stayed there for a time during the civil war with Stephen of England.As she was still young, Adeliza came out of mourning some time before 1139 and married William d'Aubigny, 1st Earl of Arundel, who had been one of Henry's chief advisers. She brought with her a queen's dowry, including the great castle of Arundel. The new king, Stephen of England, created d'Aubigny, Earl of Arundel and Earl of Lincoln.

Although her husband was a staunch supporter of Stephen during the Anglo-Norman civil war, her personal inclination may have been toward the cause of Empress Matilda, who was her stepdaughter. When the empress sailed for England in 1139, it was to Adeliza that she appealed for shelter. She therefore landed near Arundel and was received as a guest of the former queen. The stone apartments constructed to accommodate the empress and her entourage survive to this day.

Adeliza and William had seven children surviving to adulthood. All were born at Castle Arundel in Sussex, but their dates are uncertain: William d'Aubigny, (1140) 2nd Earl of Arundel; Olivia (1141); Godfrey (1143); Alice (1145); Agatha (1147); Rayner (1149); and Henry (1151).

One of Adeliza's brothers, Joscelyn de Louvain (Jocelin, Gosuinus), came to England and married Agnes de Percy, heiress of the Percy family. Joscelyn may actually have been an illegitimate son of Adeliza's father and thus her half-brother. His children took their name from their mother's lineage, and their descendants include the medieval Earls of Northumberland.

Later life and legacy

Adeliza spent her final years in the abbey of Affligem in Flanders, which she richly rewarded with landed estates. She died in the abbey and was buried in its church next to her father. An eighteenth century floor plan of the church shows her tombstone located halfway up the left nave. However, her grave was demolished during the French Revolution about 1798. Her remains were later reburied in the cloister of the re-erected abbey.

Adeliza was a patron of literature during her marriage to Henry I and of the church during her second marriage, giving property to Reading Abbey in honor of her former husband and to several other, smaller foundations. Her son William was father to William d'Aubigny, 3rd Earl of Arundel who was one of the 25 guarantors of the Magna Carta.

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Adelicia of Louvain's Timeline

1105
1105
Leuven, Flemish Region, Belgium
1122
January 29, 1122
Age 17
Windsor, Berkshire, England
1135
1135
Age 30
Arundel Castle, near the Sussex coast
1136
1136
Age 31
England, West Sussex, Arundel (Arundel Castle)
1138
1138
Age 33
Arundel,,Sussex,England
1139
1139
Age 34
1139
Age 34
Buckenham, Norfolk, England
1141
1141
Age 36
Of Castle Arundel, Sussex, England
1147
1147
Age 42
Castle Arundel, Sussex, England
1149
1149
Age 44
Castle Arundel, Sussex, England