Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com: accessed ), memorial page for Stephen of Anjou (26 Dec 1332–9 Aug 1354), Find a Grave Memorial no. 41137606, citing Saint Stephen Basilica (ruins), Székesfehérvár, Székesfehérvári járás, Fejér, Hungary ; Maintained by Lutetia (contributor 46580078) .
Once news of Stephen's capture reached him, Geoffrey of Anjou invaded Normandy again and, in the absence of Waleran of Beaumont, who was still fighting in England, Geoffrey took all the duchy south of the river Seine and east of the river Risle.
Aug 04, 2020 · King Stephen of England and his wife, Matilda of Boulogne, had 3 children who survived infancy, and yet – on his death – Stephen disinherited his surviving son, William, to leave his throne to Henry, Count of Anjou and Duke of Normandy. Henry was the son of Stephen’s bitter enemy, Empress Matilda.
Stephen, king of England from 1135 to 1154. He gained the throne by usurpation but failed to consolidate his power during the ensuing civil strife. Stephen was the third son of Stephen, Count of Blois and Chartres, and Adela, daughter of King William I the Conqueror.
Matilda had been defeated but the succession remained in dispute: Stephen wanted his son Eustace to be named heir, and Matilda wanted her son Henry of Anjou to succeed to the crown. Civil war continued until Matilda departed for France in 1148.
- Early Life
- Empress Matilda & Civil War
- Defending The Realm
- Death & Successor
Stephen was born c. 1097 CE in Blois, France, his parents being Stephen Henry, Count of Blois and Adela of Normandy, the daughter of William the Conqueror and sister of Henry I. Stephen was sent to his uncle Henry’s court from the age of ten and, establishing himself as one of the king’s favourites, he received riches and lands. He also had a lucky escape in 1120 CE when the White Ship carrying Henry's heir William (b. c. 1103 CE) sank in the English Channel drowning all on board except a butcher from Rouen. If Stephen had not had a bout of diarrhoea, he would have been on the ship himself. If William had not died, then Stephen would almost certainly never have been king. Stephen married Matilda of Boulogne (c. 1103-1152 CE) sometime in or prior to 1125 CE. Matilda was the daughter of Eustace III, Count of Boulogne and Mary of Scotland, daughter of Malcolm III of Scotland (r. 1058-1093 CE) and the sister of Henry I’s wife. She would be a formidable ally in her husband’s fight to kee...
Despite two marriages, King Henry I of England left no legitimate male heir and so his nominated successor was his daughter Matilda (b. 1102 CE) whom the king had made his barons swear loyalty to (including Stephen). Matilda is often called Empress Matilda after her marriage in 1114 CE to Holy Roman Emperor Henry V (r. 1111-1125 CE). Following the emperor’s death, Matilda married Count Geoffrey of Anjou (l. 1113-1151 CE) in 1128 CE. The Count was also known by the nickname ‘Plantagenet’ because his family coat of arms included the broom plant (planta genista). Despite Henry’s wishes, many barons did not like the idea of a female ruler or the idea of a member of the house of Anjou as their sovereign and so they supported their own man Stephen, Count of Blois, then the richest baron in England. Stephen also had a very decent pedigree as a grandson of William the Conqueror and a nephew of Henry I. Crucially, at the time of the king’s death in December 1135 CE, Stephen was the first to...
Empress Matilda’s husband Count Geoffrey was as ambitious as his wife to control England, and another even more important ally in Matilda’s cause was Robert Fitzroy, Earl of Gloucester, an illegitimate son of Henry I. Initially, Robert Fitzroy had supported Stephen but he subsequently switched to Matilda’s side in the civil war, although a premature uprising by his followers was ruthlessly crushed by Stephen in April 1138 CE. In fact, the king’s opponents were mounting up as even his own brother, Henry of Blois, fell out of favour with him over who should control the see of Canterbury. Yet another enemy was Ranulf, the Earl of Chester, justifiably upset that the king had given away his castle at Carlisle to the Scottish king (see below for Stephen’s border troubles). Unfortunately, the king could not always buy loyalty by giving out royal lands as his predecessor Henry I had already overused this strategy and left the Crown somewhat impoverished. In addition, barons now had the leve...
While the country was ripped apart by the divided barons, the king was also threatened by the actions of his neighbours. The first to nibble away at Stephen’s territory was the Count of Anjou, husband of Empress Matilda. He invaded Normandy in 1137 CE and despite Stephen’s expedition there, the local barons proved less than willing to fight yet another war over this hotly contested territory. Stephen was obliged to withdraw and leave Normandy to fend for itself. Meanwhile, David I of Scotland, the uncle of Empress Matilda, was flexing his muscles and attacked Northumbria, Lancashire, and Yorkshire in the north of England in 1138 CE. The Sottish king would eventually grab control of Cumberland, Northumberland, Durham, Westmorland, and Lancaster but was at least pushed back by Stephen’s victory near Northallerton in Yorkshire at the battle of the Standard in August 1138 CE. In the east of Stephen’s kingdom, 1146 CE saw the Welsh brothers Cadell ap Gruffydd (d. 1175 CE) and Maredudd wi...
In 1153 CE, King Stephen was something of a broken man following the death of his wife and son Eustace (b. 1127 CE) that year. He now faced Henry's third invasion and hoped for a decisive pitched battle, but in the event, neither side's soldiers or leaders were very keen on a fight. Consequently, on 6 November, Stephen signed with Henry the Treaty of Wallingford, which recognised him as Stephen’s official heir. In return, Stephen was allowed to keep his crown for the rest of his life. The barons had no better candidate to support than Henry, and it was clear to all that the civil war had not done anybody any good (even if its chaos has perhaps been exaggerated by later historians) and the last thing England needed was another tussle for the throne. As one anonymous medieval chronicler put it, "For nineteen long winters, God and his angels slept" (quoted in McDowall, 26). It was time for unity and peace. Consequently, when Stephen died on 25 October 1154 CE at Dover in Kent, Henry wa...
In 1153 Stephen agreed to the Treaty of Westminster with Matilda’s son Henry of Anjou. This stated that Stephen should remain king for life (in the event this was less than one more year) and then Henry should succeed him. Upon Stephen’s death in 1154, Henry was crowned King Henry II, the first of the Plantagenet line of kings.
On the death of Henry I in 1135, his favourite nephew, Stephen of Blois, son of his sister Adela, hurried to London, where he secured election and coronation within the month. This contravened the oath he and his fellow barons had sworn in 1127 to Henry's daughter, the Empress Matilda. His election was confirmed by the Pope in 1136.
Geoffrey V (24 August 1113 – 7 September 1151), called the Handsome, the Fair (French: le Bel) or Plantagenet, was the Count of Anjou, Touraine and Maine by inheritance from 1129, and also Duke of Normandy by conquest from 1144.