Maria Komnene, Queen consort of Jerusalem (c.1154 - 1217) MP

‹ Back to Komnene surname

Is your surname Komnene?

Research the Komnene family

Maria Komnene, Queen of Jerusalem's Geni Profile

Share your family tree and photos with the people you know and love

  • Build your family tree online
  • Share photos and videos
  • Smart Matching™ technology
  • Free!

Share

Nicknames: "Porphyrogenita", "Marie", "Komnene", "Komnenos"
Birthplace: Constantinople, Byzantine Empire
Death: Died in Constantinople, Byzantine Empire
Occupation: Reine, de Jérusalem
Managed by: Knut Stangenberg
Last Updated:

About Maria Komnene, Queen consort of Jerusalem

Maria Komnene or Comnena (Greek: Μαρία Κομνηνή, Maria Komnēnē), (c. 1154 – 1208/1217), was the second wife of King Amalric I of Jerusalem and mother of Queen Isabella of Jerusalem. She was the daughter of John Komnenos, sometime Byzantine dux in Cyprus, and Maria Taronitissa, a descendant of the ancient Armenian kings. Her sister Theodora married Prince Bohemund III of Antioch, and her brother Alexios was briefly, in 1185, a pretender to the throne of the Byzantine Empire. Marriage of Maria and Amalric

After the annulment of his first marriage to Agnes of Courtenay, Amalric was anxious to forge an alliance with Byzantium and asked the emperor Manuel I Komnenos for a bride from the imperial family. Maria was the emperor's grandniece and he bestowed upon her a rich dowry. The marriage of Amalric and Maria was celebrated with much fanfare at Tyre, on 29 August 1167.

Maria bore him a daughter, Isabella, in 1172, and a stillborn child in 1173. On his deathbed, in 1174, Amalric left Nablus to Maria, who became dowager queen upon his death.

In 1177, Maria married Balian of Ibelin, who commanded the defense of Jerusalem against Saladin in 1187. She bore him at least four children:

   Helvis of Ibelin, who married (1) Reginald of Sidon (widower of Agnes of Courtenay), and (2) Guy of Montfort
   John of Ibelin, Lord of Beirut and constable of Jerusalem, who married Helvis of Nephin, then Melisende of Arsur
   Margaret, who married (1) Hugh of Tiberias (stepson of Raymond III of Tripoli), and (2) Walter of Caesarea
   Philip of Ibelin, bailli (regent) of Cyprus, who married Alice of Montbéliard.

Maria and Balian supported Conrad of Montferrat (uncle of the late King Baldwin V) in his struggle for the crown against Guy of Lusignan. They arranged for Maria's daughter by Amalric, Isabella, to have her first marriage annulled so that she could marry Conrad, giving him a stronger claim to the throne. In this, Maria and Balian gained the enmity of Richard I of England and his chroniclers. The anonymous author of the Itinerarium Peregrinorum et Gesta Regis Ricardi wrote of them:

   Steeped in Greek filth from the cradle, she had a husband whose morals matched her own: he was cruel, she was godless; he was fickle, she was pliable; he was faithless, she was fraudulent.

As the grandmother of Alice of Champagne (Isabella's daughter by her third husband, Henry II of Champagne), Maria conducted the marriage negotiations with Cyprus in 1208 – Alice was to marry Hugh I of Cyprus. Blanche of Navarre, Regent and Countess of Champagne, widow of Alice's paternal uncle, provided the dowry for Alice. This is the last time Maria is mentioned, and she was certainly dead by 1217.

view all 12

Maria Komnene, Queen of Jerusalem's Timeline

1154
1154
Constantinople, Byzantine Empire
1167
August 29, 1167
Age 13
Tyr, , , , Liban,
1172
1172
Age 18
of, Japhe
1172
Age 18
1177
1177
Age 23
France
1179
1179
Age 25
Of,Beirut,Tripoli,Syria
1180
1180
Age 26
Of,Ibelin,,Palestine
1185
1185
Age 31
Cyprus
1217
1217
Age 63
Constantinople, Byzantine Empire
1217
Age 63