Ermengarde de Anjou d'Anjou, Duchess of Aquitaine and Brittany (1068 - 1147) MP

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Birthplace: Anjou, Isere, Rhone-Alpes, France
Death: Died in Convent of St. Anne, Jerusalem, Palestine
Occupation: had to endure her lot, even under pain of death, even burned, Patron of Fontevraud Abbey; died a nun
Managed by: Bianca May Evelyn Brennan
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About Ermengarde de Anjou d'Anjou, Duchess of Aquitaine and Brittany

CURATOR's NOTE: PLEASE DO NOT MERGE HER WITH HER GRANDMOTHER, ERMENGARDE d'ANJOU 1018-1076l

Ermengarde of Anjou (d. 1146) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ermengarde of Anjou (ca. 1068 – 1 June 1146) was a member of the comital House of Anjou and by her two marriages was successively Duchess of Aquitaine and Brittany. Also, she was a patron of Fontevraud Abbey.

Early years

Born in Angers, she was the eldest child of Count Fulk IV of Anjou but the only one born by his first wife, Hildegarde of Beaugency. Having lost her mother in 1070, at only two years of age, she received a good education and grew to be pious and concerned about religious reform, especially the struggle against the secular appropriation of church property. She was also noted for her beauty in her youth.

Duchess of Aquitaine

In 1089, her marriage was arranged to the young Duke and poet, William IX of Aquitaine. However, this union proved a dismal failure. Her husband was a voracious philanderer, whose affairs infuriated his wife. She suffered from severe mood swings, vacillating between vivacity and sullenness, and would nag her husband. She also had a habit of retiring in bad temper to a cloister after an argument, cutting off all contact with the outside world, before suddenly making a reappearance in the court as if her absence had never occurred. Such behavior, coupled with her failure to conceive a child, led William to send her back to her father and have the marriage dissolved in 1091.

Her behavior during her marriage to the Duke has been described by both Marion Meade and Alison Weir as schizophrenic, with Weir adding a suggestion of manic depression.

Duchess of Brittany

In 1093, her father married her to Duke Alan IV of Brittany, probably to secure an alliance against Normandy, then controlled by William the Conqueror’s son, Robert Curthose. The union produced three children: Conan (later Duke Conan III of Brittany), Havise (wife of Baldwin VII of Flanders, who repudiated her in 1110) and Geoffrey (who died young in Jerusalem in 1116).

Her husband left for Palestine in 1096 to take part in the First Crusade and she assumed control of the Duchy from then until 1101.

She spent little time in Rennes or the west of Brittany, preferring Nantes and the Saumur region. Influenced by Robert of Arbrissel, she approved the expansion of the abbey at Fontevraud, to which she withdrew on two occasions. An admirer of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux (to whose abbey she made donations), she favored the creation of Cistercian abbeys. She was also a benefactress of the monastery of Buzay, near Nantes.

Alan IV, an unpopular ruler, was forced to abdicated in favor of his son in 1112, and he and Ermengarde were separated after this. The former Duke retired to the monastery of Redon, where he died on 13 October 1119.

Later years

By 1116, Ermengarde was living in Fontevrault Abbey, where she reputedly became a friend of her first husband's second wife, Philippa of Toulouse.

In 1118, after the death of Philippa, Ermengarde decided to avenge her deceased friend. She went south from Fontevrault to the court of her former husband, Duke William of Aquitaine, where she demanded to be recognized as the rightful Duchess. William ignored this remarkable request. Accordingly, in October 1119, she suddenly appeared at the Council of Reims, being held by Pope Calixtus II, demanding that the Pope excommunicate William, oust his mistress from the ducal palace, and restore Ermengarde to her rightful place as the Duchess of Aquitaine. The Pope "declined to accommodate her"; however, Ermengarde continued to trouble William for several years afterwards.

Death

Ermengarde at one point went on Crusade to Palestine; she returned ten years later, and some historians believe her life ended in Jerusalem at the convent of Saint Anne. But obituary lists at the abbey of Saint-Saveur de Redon record a date of death in 1146 in Redon where her second husband was buried. Certainly, it is believed that she died a nun. The contradictions about her death and the records of her burial maybe indicated that in fact she died in Jerusalem, but later her body was transferred to Redon.

See also

   * Ermengarde of Anjou (c. 1018-1076), her paternal grandmother
==================

-------------------- http://epistolae.ccnmtl.columbia.edu/woman/31.html

Ermengarde of Anjou, countess of Brittany

There are letters written to and by Ermengarde of Anjou, countess of Brittany.

Ermengard was the daughter of Fulk le Réchin, count of Anjou, and of Lancelotte de Beaugenci. She was betrothed first to Guillaume VII, count of Poitiers, but the marriage was cancelled because of consanguinity, probably before it was consummated. She married Alain Fergent count of Brittany in about 1092 and gave birth to two sons and a daughter, Conan III, Geoffroy, and Hedvige/Hedwig. Life in Brittany seems to have been rather rough compared to the elegance of the court she had known in Anjou but Ermengard took an active part in the government of Brittany for four decades. She served as regent while Alain was on crusade, 1096-1101, and participated in her son's rule through much of her life.

Ermengard's husband retired to the abbey of Redon in 1112 after a serious illness, perhaps with some persuasion from her, and she retired to Fontevrault at the same time, but he stayed until he died in 1119, while Ermengard left Fontevrult after the death of its founder, Robert of Abrissel. She returned to the court of her son, Conan who had married an illegitimate daughter of Henry I of England, and played an active role in the government. Her name appears regularly in charters and she was present at political and religious assemblies.

Ermengard visited Fontevrault again in 1129, where her widowed niece was, Matilda of Anjou who had been married to prince William, son of Henry I. Shortly thereafter she followed St. Bernard to Dijon, and received the veil from his hands in 1130, but she left the cloister again, perhaps in 1132, to visit her brother Fulk after he became king of Jerusalem by his marriage to Melisende. While she was there, she worked to restore the church of the Holy Saviour in Nablus. She left in 1135 and returned to the court of Brittany, where she died in June, 1147.

Biographical notes: Birth date: c.1069 Birth place: Death date: 1147 Letters available on http://epistolae.ccnmtl.columbia.edu/woman/31.html Sender(s): Receiver(s): Date: Marbod, bishop of Rennes Ermengarde of Anjou, countess of Brittany c.1096? Geoffrey of Vendôme, abbot Ermengarde of Anjou, countess of Brittany 1117? Geoffrey of Vendôme, abbot Ermengarde of Anjou, countess of Brittany c.1131? Bernard of Clairvaux, abbot Ermengarde of Anjou, countess of Brittany 1130-32? Bernard of Clairvaux, abbot Ermengarde of Anjou, countess of Brittany 1130-32? Robert d'Arbrissel Ermengarde of Anjou, countess of Brittany c.1109 -------------------- Ermengarde d' ANJOU [Parents] 1, 2, 3 was born 1068 in , Anjou, France. She died 4 1 Jun 1147 in , Bretagne, France. Ermengarde married Alan IV "Fergent" Duke of Brittany on 1091 in Bretagne, France.

They had the following children:

		M	i	 Conan III de BRETAGNE Duke of Brittany was born 1092 and died 17 Sep 1148.
		F	ii	 Hawise de BRETAGNE was born 1105.

Ermengard was the daughter of Fulk le Réchin, count of Anjou, and of Lancelotte de Beaugenci. She was betrothed first to Guillaume VII, count of Poitiers, but the marriage was cancelled because of consanguinity, probably before it was consummated. She married Alain Fergent count of Brittany in about 1092 and gave birth to two sons and a daughter, Conan III, Geoffroy, and Hedvige/Hedwig. Life in Brittany seems to have been rather rough compared to the elegance of the court she had known in Anjou but Ermengard took an active part in the government of Brittany for four decades. She served as regent while Alain was on crusade, 1096-1101, and participated in her son's rule through much of her life. Ermengard's husband retired to the abbey of Redon in 1112 after a serious illness, perhaps with some persuasion from her, and she retired to Fontevrault at the same time, but he stayed until he died in 1119, while Ermengard left Fontevrult after the death of its founder, Robert of Abrissel. She returned to the court of her son, Conan who had married an illegitimate daughter of Henry I of England, and played an active role in the government. Her name appears regularly in charters and she was present at political and religious assemblies. Ermengard visited Fontevrault again in 1129, where her widowed niece was, Matilda of Anjou who had been married to prince William, son of Henry I. Shortly thereafter she followed St. Bernard to Dijon, and received the veil from his hands in 1130, but she left the cloister again, perhaps in 1132, to visit her brother Fulk after he became king of Jerusalem by his marriage to Melisende. While she was there, she worked to restore the church of the Holy Saviour in Nablus. She left in 1135 and returned to the court of Brittany, where she died in June, 1147.

Ermengarde was a Princess of Anjou who was also successively Duchess of Aquitaine, Duchess of Brittany, and the patron of Fontevraud Abbey. She was born in Angers around 1067, the daughter of Fulk IV of Anjou and Hildegarde of Beaugency.

Having lost her mother at a young age, she received a good education and grew to be pious and concerned about religious reform, especially over the struggle against the secular appropriation of church property.

Her first wedding, in 1089, was to the young duke and poet William IX of Aquitaine, but he annuled the marriage three years later.

In 1093, her father married her to the Duke of Brittany, Alan IV, probably to secure an alliance against Normandy, now controlled by William the Conqueror’s son. Her husband left for Palestine in 1096 to take part in the First Crusade and she assumed control of the Duchy from then until 1101.

She spent little time in Rennes or the west of Brittany, preferring Nantes and the Saumur region. Influenced by Robert of Arbrissel, she approved the expansion of the abbey at Fontevraud, to which she withdrew on two occasions. An admirer of Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, she favoured the creation of Cistercian abbeys.

After her husband’s death in 1095, she returned to Brittany to support the new duke, her young son Conan III. In 1117, at the age of 50, she accompanied her son on the Second Crusade.

She returned to Palestine ten years later, and some historians believe her life ended in Jerusalem at the convent of Saint Anne. But obituary lists at the abbey of Saint-Saveur de Redon record a date of death in 1147 in Redon where her husband was buried. ---------------------------

Extract from Duby, Georges: The Knight, The Lady, And the Priest. The Making of Modern Marriage in Medieval France. 1983, Allen Lane, London p159: “ ..Ermengarde ..was given in marriage by her father Fouque Rechin, to William of Acquitaine. After William had repudiated her she was married to the count of Nantes. She tried to leave him for Fontevraud, asking that the marriage be annulled. But the bishops refused, and Robert of Arbrissel had to send her back to her husband, exhorting her to be obedient, to accept her lot in life, her “order” as a wife and a mother. (Patrologie Latinae 176, 987) She was to be patient and resigned, he said, and follow a little rule specially designed for her. It provided for much giving of alms, but neither too much prayer nor too much mortification, so that her body should remain healthy. What she was supposed to do was endure even under pain of death, even were she to be burned alive, as the wife of her great grandfather, Fouque Nerra had been burned for alleged adultery. But ERmengarde, the daughter of a prince, astounded the bishops at the Council of Reims in 1119 by appearing before them, widow at last, to accuse her first husband of bigamy. But then, had not she herself, they might have replied, in both her marriages, shown herself to be difficult and disobedient?”

-------------------- Ermengarde d' Anjou was born after 1065.

She married our ancestor (through a different wife) Guillaume IX "le Troubadour," duc de Guyenne, comte de Poitiers, son of Guillaume VI Gui-Geoffroi, comte de Poitou, duc d' Aquitaine et de Gascogne and Hildegarde de Bourgogne; they were divorced (annulled) before 1093.

She then married our ancestor (through her) Alain IV "Fergent," duc de Bretagne, son of Hoël II, comte de Cornoüaille & de Dol and Hawise de Tours, in 1093.

Ermengarde d' Anjou died in Jerusalem, Outremer, as a nun.

See "My Lines"

( http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~cousin/html/p367.htm#i7817 )

from Compiler: R. B. Stewart, Evans, GA

( http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~cousin/html/index.htm )

view all 11

Ermengarde d'Anjou, Duchess of Aquitaine Fergant's Timeline

1068
1068
Anjou, Isere, Rhone-Alpes, France
1082
1082
Age 14
Of,,,France
1090
1090
Age 22
Brittany, France
1092
1092
Age 24
1093
1093
Age 25
Bretagne, France
1093
Age 25
France
1110
1110
Age 42
Bretagne, France
1130
1130
Age 62
Bretagne, Indre, Centre, France
1147
June 1, 1147
Age 79
Convent of St. Anne, Jerusalem, Palestine
????