Blogiversary: 10/2/2013

Monday, September 30, 2013

Eleanor of Aquitane

Courtesy of
In King John, Shakespeare portrayed Eleanor as a 'canker'd grandam', governed by lust for power, who schemed against her husband Henry II - a crime for which she spent fifteen years in prison - and dominated her children's lives, ruthlessly turning them against their father, the King. It is also well known that she feuded bitterly with at least one daughter-in-law and contributed to the death of her own grandson.

And, yet, there was another side to this powerful queen consort. Splendid in person, rank, and fortune, Queen of France - as the wife of Louis VII - and then of England, Eleanor of Aquitaine was worshipped by men, loved by her children, and idealised in the songs of the troubadours. She was renowned for her beauty and her generosity. Emerging at the King's death to become regent, she immediately ordered the release of prisoners throughout England, announcing: "By my own experience prisons are hateful to men and to be released from them is a most delightful refreshment to the spirit." She also patronised the great abbey at Fontevrault, a refuge for the wives of brutal husbands.

Today her glamour, her patronage of the poets, and her throwing off of the ferocious constraints with which convention shackled women in the twelfth century, are almost forgotten, as are her very real gifts as a politician and a ruler.

Reference: Eleanor of Aquitaine the Mother Queen by Desmond Seward.
This is my connection to Eleanor of Aquitaine: Kyong-Mi ArcalaThomas James Arcala Sr. my father → Lenore Evelyn Barron his mother → Harvey Joseph Barron her father → Suzanne Ouellette his mother → Norbert Ouellette her father → Jean-Baptiste Ouellette, IV his father → Geneveva Ouellette his mother → Jean-Baptiste Ouellette her father → François Ouellette his father → Marie-Thérèse Mignault dite Chatillon his mother → Marie-Louise Cloutier her mother → (Xainte) Dupont her mother → Paul-Michel DuPont her father → Denis DuPont his father → Charles Dupont his father → Charles Louis du Pont his father → Francois du Pont his father → Jean du Pont L'Abbe, II his father → Herve du Pont-L'Abbe, VIII his father → Herve du Pont-L'Abbe, VII his father → Hervi du Pont-L'Abbe, VI his father → Peronelle de Rochefort his mother → Philippa de Laval her mother → Jeanne de Brienne her mother → Sir Louis de Brienne, Viscount de Beaumont her father → Berenguela de León, emperatriz consorte de Constantinopla his mother → Berenguela I la Grande, reina de Castilla her mother → Leonor de Inglaterra, reina consorte de Castilla her mother → Eleanor of Aquitaine, Queen of France and England her mother

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