Arnulf was an infant when he succeeded his grandfather Arnulf I in 964 or 965. Like his grandfather and his son Baldwin IV, Arnulf II usually appears in his own acts with the title of "marquis" [Cart. S.-Pierre de Gand, 1: 43-54, passim]. He was at first under the guardianship of Baldwin alias Balzo (d. 973), who was an illegitimate son either of Adalolf, brother of Arnulf I ["Hic etenim Baldzo filius fuit Adalulfi, qui erat uterinus frater Arnulfi magni eundemque Baldzonem ex concubina genuit, ...", De Arnulfo comite, MGH SS 9: 304] or of Raoul, brother of Baldwin II ["Obiit Balzo, filius Rodulfi comitis" Ann. Bland., s.a. 973, Grierson (1937), 21; Ann. Formos., s.a. 973, ibid. 126]. Count Arnulf's name appears in lists of the abbots of St. Bertin [MGH SS 13: 391 ("Ernulfus comes abba"), 607 ("Arnoldus abbas")], but if this is correct, he probably would have held the office in name only while he was a child. He was succeeded by his underage son Baldwin IV. For a recent account of the reign of Arnulf II, see Dunbabin (1989).
Date of Birth: ca. 960 (still an infant at the deaths
of his father and grandfather)
Place of Birth: Unknown.
Date of Death: (23 or 30?) March 988 (or, much less likely,
The year of Arnulf's death is not given consistently in the annals ["Obiit Arnulfus marchysus, nepos magni Arnulfi." Ann. Bland., s.a. 989, Grierson (1937), 22; "Obiit Arnulfus, nepos magni Arnulfi. Sepultus est in Blandinio.", Ann. Elmarenses, s.a. 988, ibid., 87; "Obiit Arnulfus, nepos magni Arnulfi", Ann. Formos., s.a. 991, ibid., 126; "Obiit Arnulfus iunior." Annales Elnonenses ("minores"), s.a. 988, ibid., 152]. However, a charter of count Baldwin IV dated 1 April 988 indicates that he was dead by that date ["Ego Balduinus marchisus, cum matre mea Susanna regina, post excessum vite patris mei Arnulfi marchysi, ..." Cart. S.-Pierre de Gand, 56 (#64)]. The date of 30 March is given by the Chronicle of Tronchiennes ["Trigesimo die Martii, Arnulphus Junior, relicto Balduino filio adhuc impubere, diem suum clausit: alii tribuunt anno sequenti." Chronicon Trunchinense, s.a. 988, Corpus Chron. Fland. 1: 596] and in Arnulf's claimed epitaph ["Inclytus Arnulphus comes hic est carne sepultus, / Arnulphus Magnus cujus habetur avus. / Hic nos ditavit, nec ab avo degeneravit, / Nam Camphim, Harnes et bona plura dedit. / Martis terdena lux ibat solis habena, / Cum pius hic heros transiit ad superos. // Auxit quippe data, fecit et esse rata. / Hujus Susanna conjux fuerat veneranda, / Balduinum generans, pignus avorum imitans. / Hunc, rex justorum, socium fac esse tuorum, / Atque bonis veris gaudeat in superis. / Terdena luce, cum Martius esset in axe, / Corpus humo tradit, cum moriendo cadit." Adrien de Budt, Chronicon Flandriae, Corpus Chron. Fland. 1: 273]. Anselme states that the date was 23 March, but does not give a source [Anselme 2: 715]. In Vanderkindere's interpretation of the evidence, the title of regina given to Susanna in the above charter indicates that her marriage to king Robert II had already occurred by that date, in which case Arnulf's death would have to be placed on 30 March 987, for Robert and Susanna would certainly not have married on the day after Arnulf's death [Vanderkindere (1902), 1: 295]. On the other hand, if the word regina simply indicates that Rozala/Susanna was emphasizing her rule of Flanders on behalf of her underage son [see Stewart (2006), where other examples are given], that would fit well with a death date of Arnulf a couple of days earlier. Since it is improbable that Susanna and Robert were married as early as 1 April 988, the latter is much more likely.
Place of Death: Unknown.
Father: Baldwin III, d. 1 January 962, joint count of Flanders.
Mathilde, d. 25 May 1009, daughter of Hermann, duke of Sachsen (Saxony).
["Qui Balduinus ex Mathilde filium genuit Arnolfum minorem, ..." De Arnulfo comite, MGH SS 9: 304; "Hic [i.e., Baldwin III] duxerat filiam Herimanni ducis Saxonum Mathildem, ex qua genuit Arnulfum." Genealogia comitum Flandriae Bertiniana, MGH SS 9: 306]
Susanna, d. 13 December 1003, daughter of Berengar II,
king of Italy. She m. (2) Robert II,
king of France.
["Arnulfus, filius eius [Mathilde] ex priori marito Balduino, duxit filiam Berengeri regis Langobardorum, Ruzelam quae et Susanna, ex qua suscepit Balduinum Barbatum." Genealogia comitum Flandriae Bertiniana, MGH SS 9: 306; "Post immaturum Arnulfi iunioris marchionis mortem, cuius avus Magnus exstitit Arnulfus, Balduinus, filius eius, cum matre Rozala derelictus est parvulus. Hic enim est qui postea Prolixae-barbae dictus est Balduinus, cuius mater Rozala filia fuit Berengarii regis Italiae, quae post mortem Arnulfi principis Roberto regi Francorum nupsit, et Susanna dicta mutato nomine, regina regnavit." Ex vita Bertulfi Renticensis, c. 33, MGH SS 15, part 2: 638]. Although it cannot be ruled out that she was baptized under a double name, it seems more likely that Rozala was her baptismal name and that Susanna was a name adopted later. She appears as "Susanna regina" in a charter of her son Baldwin IV shortly after the death of her first husband Arnulf [Cart. S.-Pierre de Gand, 56 (#64), see above], where the title probably refers to her status as ruler of Flanders during the minority of her son rather than "queen" of France [see Stewart (2006)]. Her marriage to Robert II of France does not attract much attention in the sources, and must not have lasted long ["His ita sese habentibus, Rotbertus rex cum in undevicesimo aetatis anno, iuventutis flore vernaret, Susannam uxorem genere Italicam, eo quod anus esset, facto divortio repudiavit." Richer iv, 87, MGH SS 3: 651; Ex vita Bertulfi Renticensis, above]. She died in 1003 ["Obiit Susanna regina." Ann. Bland. & Ann. Elnonenses, s.a. 1003, Grierson (1937), 23, 153], undoubtedly on 13 December, the date recorded in the Lüneburg necrology [see Althoff (1984), 373 (K 48)], and not on the "ante dies septem mensis Februarii" recorded in her supposed epitaph ["Hoc conditorio regina Susanna quiescit, / Hic spectans reditum iudicis etherei. / Occidit ante dies septem mensis Februarii, / Dans animam superis ossaque, terra, tibi." MGH Poetae Latini 5: 299].
Mathilde, d. 24 July 995.
The date of 24 July is given in her supposed epitaph ["Indolis emerite Mathildis filia clari / Hic iacet Arnulfi magnificique viri. / Lumine deciduo caruit que .VIIII. kalendas / Augusti, domina solvens iura suo." MGH Poetae Latini 5: 298]. The year was undoubtedly 995, as indicated by an act of Susanna and Baldwin IV on that date ["Susanna regina cum filio suo Baldwino pro animo filie sue Mathildis ... Actum est autem hoc VIIº kal. augusti anno verbi incarnati DCCCCXCIIº, indictione VIIIª, regnante Rotberto rege, anno Xº regiminis domni Adalwini abbatis." Cart. S.-Pierre de Gand, 60 (#71); Here, "DCCCCXCII" must be read "DCCCCXCV" (a common error in reading minims), to match the indiction and the year of abbot Adalwine; see also Fayen (1906), 96 (#102), where the same document is read "DCCCCXCV" (citation courtesy of Peter Stewart)]. For her alleged (and possibly nonexistent) husband "Guilbert de Beaumont", see below in the Commentary section.
Baldwin IV, d. 29 or 30 May 1035, marquis of Flanders 987×8-1035,
m. Otgive of
[Genealogia comitum Flandriae Bertiniana, MGH SS 9: 306 (see above)]
children (due to mistaken identity):
The following two individuals were sons of men named Arnulf, but not of Arnulf II of Flanders. They are listed as sons of Arnulf II by Anselme, who cites Oudegherst [Anselme 2: 715]. The basis is a very careless misidentification of two members of the witness list to a charter of Baldwin IV of Flanders ["S. Balduini iunioris marchysi. S. Adelberti comitis, filii Arnulphi. S. Theoderici comitis, filii Arnulphi comitis." Cart. S.-Pierre de Gand, 69 (#87)].
He was in fact a son of Arnulf, count of Valenciennes, who was still alive at the time of the charter in 998, as the charter itself shows [Cart. S.-Pierre de Gand 69 (#87); see also ibid., 63 (#75)]
He was in fact Dirk III of the dynasty of the counts of Holland, son of count Arnulf of that dynasty [see, e.g., Cart. S.-Pierre de Gand, 65 (#78)].
Falsely attributed son (existence unlikely, evidently a fabrication):
Eudes, count of Cambrai, m. (1) Adèle
de Beaumont, his niece; (2) Adèle de
(existence of both spouses also doubtful)
This falsehood, which has been picked up by some printed and internet references, is based largely on George Andrews Moriarty's The Plantagenet Ancestry, which in turn was evidently based on the work of a certain T. Friedrich von Stauffenberg. The account (in Moriarty's handwriting) reads as follows [Moriarty, 277]:
"T. Friedrich von Stauffenberg Esq. M. B. of Washington, D. C. has made an extensive study of the neglected cadets of the counts of Flanders and their descendants, based on the chartularies of the abbeys of St. Omer, St. Pierre, St. Bavo, Notre Dame d'Ourscamp and Cysoing and the most reliable chronicles of the Flemish region."
"The records of St. Pierre de Cambrai record an [sic] remembrance for the soul of
CountOdo (Eudes), son of Count Arnulf, and Susanne 'lately Queen of France (i.e. Susanne of Italy, who married 1st Arnulf Count of Flanders and 2ndly Robert King of France before 988, divorced 992, cf. p. 14 ante). It provides for prayers for his soul and the souls of his father Arnulf, his mother Susanne, his sister Mathilda, widow of Guilbert de Beaumont.' "
"Eudes caused a scandal by marrying his neice [sic] Adele de Beaumont, daughter of Mathilda <About 1009/10>. He was anathematized by Pope Benedict IX and a letter of his brother Count Baldwin IV to the Pope in 1012 regarding the matter is in Migne P.L. vol. 116[?] or 117[?]. Adele died before 1015/16 and the chartularies of both St. Peter de Cambrai and St. Omer record Eudes' charters "in Poenitentia." He remarried Adele daughter of Thibaud Seigneur of Bois Ferrand, called 'Thibaud de Louvain' by Alberic de Trois Fontaines, Orderic Vitalis and William of Jumièges. By his first wife he had 2 sons Richard and Roger who joined the Normans in Italy and by his second wife Adele of Bois Ferrand he had Englebert of Brienne (see vols. ix, p. 84 and xiii, p. 257), Roger Count of St. Pol, and Peter Count of Arlon."
This is followed by a genealogical table repeating the above information in tabular form. The page numbers in the two references to Migne are difficult to read in Moriarty's handwriting, and could be volumes 126-7 or 136-7. Moriarty's work is essentially a collection of handwritten notes, based largely on secondary sources, and was certainly not intended to be published in its present form. In the present case, it seems unlikely that Moriarty did any further research of his own to follow up the notes he took from Stauffenberg's work (which I have not seen). If he had, he would undoubtedly have noticed that Benedict VIII (not IX) was pope in 1012, and that volumes 116-7 (or 126-7, 136-7) do not contain letters of either Benedict. In addition, there appears to be no reference to a 'Thibaut de Louvain' in the works of Aubry de Troisfontaines, Orderic Vitalis, or Guillaume de Jumièges. Furthermore, standard histories of the city of Cambrai make no mention of this Eudes, despite the fact that the alleged marriage of a count to his own niece that attracted the attention of the pope would, if true, be a notable event that historians would be unlikely to miss. I know of no evidence which would confirm even the existence of count Eudes of Cambrai (or of either of his two wives, or of Guilbert de Beaumont, etc.). Given that the bibliographical references do not seem to check out, it is difficult to regard these claims as anything other than a fabrication.
Anselme = Père Anselme, Histoire généalogique et chronologique de la maison royale de France, 9 vols (Paris, 1726-33).
Althoff (1984) = Gerd Althoff, Adels- und Königsfamilien im Spiegel ihrer Memorialüberlieferung (Munich, 1984).
Brandenburg (1964) = Erich Brandenburg, Die Nachkommen Karls des Großen (Frankfurt, 1964).
Cart. S.-Pierre de Gand = A. Van Lokeren, Chartes et documents de l'abbaye de Saint-Pierre au Mont Blandin à Gand, 2 vols. (Gand, 1868-71).
Corpus Chron. Fland. = Joseph-Jean de Smet, Corpus Chronicorum Flandriae, 4 vols. (Brussels, 1837-1865).
Dunbabin (1989) = Jean Dunbabin, "The reign of Arnulf II, count of Flanders, and its aftermath", Francia 16 (1989): 53-65.
Fayen (1906) = Arnold R. Fayen, ed., Liber traditionum sancti Petri Blandiniensis (Cartulaire de la ville de Gand, deuxième série, Chartes et documents I, Ghent, 1906).
Grierson (1937) = Philip Grierson, ed., Les Annales de Saint-Pierre de Gand et de Saint-Amand (Brussels, 1937). [Annales Blandinenses, Annales Elmarenses, Annales Formoselenses, Annales Elnonenses]
MGH SS = Monumenta Germaniae Historica, Scriptores series.
Moriarty = George Andrews Moriarty, "The Plantagenet Ancestry", MS (available on film number 441438 at the Family History Library and elsewhere). These notes of the author were not intended for publication, but are often cited as if they were.
Stewart (2006) = Peter Stewart, "Rozala Susanna and Robert II, king of the Franks", posting to the internet newsgroup/mailing list soc.genealogy.medieval/GEN-MEDIEVAL, 27 July 2006.
Vanderkindere (1902) = Léon Vanderkindere, La Formation Territoriale des Principautes Belge au Moyen Age (2 vols., 2nd ed., Brussels, 1902, reprinted 1981).
Werner (1967) = Karl Ferdinand Werner, "Die Nachkommen Karls des Großen bis um das Jahr 1000 (1.-8. Generation)", Karl der Große 4 (1967), 403-483.
Compiled by Stewart Baldwin
Uploaded 27 May 2002
Major revision uploaded 12 October 2006 (with thanks to Peter Stewart, for comments on the previous version).
Minor revision uploaded 25 November 2007 (with thanks again to Peter Stewart, for comments on the previous version).
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