MALE Geoffroy (III)

Count of Gâtinais, after 1028-1042×5.

Geoffroy appeared in a charter of Franco, bishop of Paris, dated 26 May 1028, at which time he and his full brother Liétaud were called the heirs of their maternal half-brother Aubry, count of Gâtinais [see discussion below]. At some point after that, he succeeded as count of Gâtinais (Château-Landon). He was evidently still living in 1042, and deceased by 1045. His marriage to Ermengarde, the heiress of Anjou, led to the acquisition of Anjou by his sons, making him a direct male-line ancestor of the "Plantagenet" dynasty. For "Férreol" as a possible nickname of Geoffroy, see below under his possible daughter who married Joscelin I de Courtenay. Because of different interpretations of the evidence, there is no "standard" numbering of the counts of Gâtinais named Geoffroy. The numbering here follows the outline of Settipani (1997), 233-4.

Date of Birth: Say 1000?
Place of Birth: Unknown.
His mother's first husband, Geoffroy (II) of Gâtinais, was living in 991 and probably deceased by 997.

Date of Death: 30 April 1042×5.
The date of 30 April (ii kal. May, no year) is given both in a charter of 1060×8, in which Geoffroy III le Barbu gave a donation for the soul of his uncle and predecessor Geoffroy and his father Geoffroy ["Ipsi vero constitutum habent pro isto beneficio annis singulis facere anniversarium patris mei Gaufridi quod est II kalendas maii, non minus diligenter quam abbatum suorum anniversaria", Halphen (1906), 134, 303; Estournet, 124], and the obituary of Saint-Serge give the same date [Halphen (1906), 134]. Assuming that the statement of his son Foulques that he was aged 17 in 1060 is correct, Foulques was born in 1042 or 1043. As I see no good reason to rule out the possibility that Foulques was posthumous, I have allowed for a date as early as 1042 [as opposed to 1043×5, Saint-Phalle (2000), 236; Settipani (2000), 254]. An act in the cartulary of Notre-Dame du Ronceray shows that Ermengarde was already widowed before the death of her mother Hildegarde on 1 April 1046, placing Geoffroy's death on 30 April 1045 or earlier. [Halphen (1906), 293 (act #169); Guillot (1972), 1: 102; Saint-Phalle (2000), 236; Settipani (2000), 254]
Place of Death: Unknown.

Father: Hugues du Perche.
A charter of Franco, bishop of Paris, dated 26 May 1028 (and quoted in full below), mentions count Aubry of Gâtinais (son of a deceased count Geoffroy of Gâtinais) and his two brothers and heirs Geoffroy and Letaud, sons of an otherwise unidentified Hugues du Perche. This younger Geoffroy was almost certainly the same man as the later count Geoffroy of Gâtinais who was father of the Angevin counts Geoffroy III and Foulques IV, as is discussed in detail in the Commentary section below.

Mother: Béatrix, daughter of Aubry II, count of Mâcon, and widow of Geoffroy (II), count of Gâtianis.
[Poupardin (1900), 208; see discussion below]

Spouse:

Ermengarde, d. 1076, heiress of Anjou. She m. (2) Robert I, d. 1076, duke of Burgundy.

Children:
Numerous sources verify that Geoffroy III and Foulques IV were brothers, and maternal grandsons of Foulques III "Nerra" (see below and on the page for Ermengarde). See the Commentary section for the identity of the father of Geoffroy III and Foulques IV.

MALE Geoffroy III "le Barbu", d. aft. 1096, count of Gâtinais, before 1060-1068; count of Anjou, 1060-1068;
m. before 1060, Julienne, living 10 August 1067,
daughter of Hamelin, lord of Langeais.
A charter (1052×1060) of Landeric, abbot of Saint-Pierre de Chartres, shows that Geoffroy was already count of Gâtinais before the death of his uncle Geoffroy Martel of Anjou ["... Notum esse volumus, tam presentibus quam futuris sancte Dei ecclesie cultoribus, quoniam adii presentiam Gausfridi, Andegavorum comitis, aput eum querimoniam de ejus nepote Gausfrido, territorii scilicet Guastinensis comite, ...", Devaux (1885), 82-3]. Geoffroy was married to his wife Julienne before 1060, when she witnessed an act for Saint-Nicolas d'Angers [Halphen (1906), 290 (#158)], and she subscribed to another act on 7 August 1067 [Halphen (1906), 298 (act #186); for her parentage, see ibid., 135]. Geoffroy was deposed by his brother, who imprisoned him from 1068 to 1096 [see Halphen (1906), 147-8].

MALE Foulques IV "le Réchin", b. 1042×3, d. 14 April 1109, count of Anjou, 1068-1109;
m. (1) Hildegard de Baugency,
daughter of Lancelin II de Baugency.
m. (2) Ermengarde de Bourbon, daughter of Archambaud IV, sire de Bourbon.
m. (3) 21 January 1076, Orengarde (Aurengarde) de Châtel-Aillon, daughter of Isembard de Châtel-Aillon.
m. (4) NN de Brienne, daughter of Gautier I, count of Brienne.
m. (5) Bertrade de Montfort, d. 1117, daughter of Simon I de Montfort-l'Amaury.

Possible additional child:

FEMALE NN, m. Joscelin I de Courtenay.
Joscelin de Courtenay is said to have married a daughter of a count Geoffroy Férreol ["Joscelinus [de Cortinaco] desponsavit filiam comitis Gaufridi Foërole", Ex Continuatione Aimoni, RHF 11- 276]. The use of Férreol as a nickname of this Geoffroy of Gâtianis comes from a gloss to Gesta Consulum Andegavorum ["Isti du, scilicet Gofridus Barbatus & Fulco Richin fuerunt filii Gofridi Foerole illustris viri de Gastinensio & Lundonensio, orti ex sorore Martelli praedicti." This gloss to Spicilegium 3, p. 258 appears on an unnumbered page in the introduction of Spicilegium, vol. 3, on the page immediately preceding page 1]. The name of this supposed daughter appears as "Hildegarde" in late sources [e.g., Anselme 1: 527; 6: 13], suggesting confusion with the Ermengarde's daughter of that name by her second husband Robert of Burgundy (see the page on Ermengarde). Thus, if it is the case that count Geoffroy Férreol is to be identified with count Geoffroy of Gâtianis, there does not appear to be any good evidence for the name of the daughter who married Joscelin de Courtenay.

Other connections (see the Commentary section for details):

Mother's first husband: Geoffroy (II), d. 991×7, count of Gâtinais, before 979-991×7, m. Béatrix de Mâcon.
Sometimes incorrectly identified as the father of the present count Geoffroy. For his chronology, see Settipani (1997), 233.

Half-brother through his mother: Aubry (Albericus), d. 1028×1030, count of Gâtinais, after 997-1028×1030, son of Geoffroy (II) (d. 991×7) and Béatrix.
He was count of Château-Landon (Gâtinais) on 26 May 1028, when a charter of Franco, bishop of Paris, mentions him, his father Gosfredus (deceased), and his two maternal half-brothers and heirs Gosfredus and Letaldus, sons of Hugo of Perche, and he is briefly mentioned at about the same time by André de Fleury's Vita Gauzlini, which records his donation of lands situated in the region of Auxerre to the abbey of Fleury ["Albericus, comes Nandonensium, sui juris alodum, in Altissioderensi territorio situm, Dei genitricis Mariæ plene devotionis largitus est munere." Vita Gauzlini, c. 29 (pp. 72-3)]. Around 1030, Béatrix donated to the abbey of Fleury as "countess" [ibid.], suggesting that Aubry was deceased by that time [see Devaux (1892), 257; Estournet (1928), 121; Settipani (1997), 255]. He is sometimes incorrectly identified as the full brother of the present count Geoffroy, and sometimes incorrectly combined with the present Geoffroy into a supposed count Aubry/Geoffroy of Gâtinais [see discussion below].

(Full) brother: Liétaud (Letaldus), living 26 May 1028, lord of Yevre, viscount of Gâtinais.
See Estournet (1928) for his descendants.



Commentary

The parentage of Geoffroy III le Barbu and Foulques IV le Réchin of Anjou

Although the medieval sources agree that the father of Geoffroy III and Foulques IV was a count of Gâtinais (or of Château-Landon, the main stronghold of the region), they disagree in giving his name as either Aubry (Albericus) or Geoffroy (Gaufridus, Gosfredus, etc.). Several twelfth century sources, for example Orderic Vitalis [iii, 6; iv, 13], Chronicon Sancti Maxentii Pictavensis [s.a. 1060, Marchegay & Mabille (1869), 402], and Hugh of Fleury [RHF 12: 797] name the father as Albericus [see Watson (1897), 1-2, for quotes from these sources and others]. Most early authors follow these twelfth century sources in making the father a count Aubry of Gâtinais.

However, contemporary sources prove clearly that the father's name was Geoffroy. In addition to the act of Geoffroy le Barbu already mentioned above which names his father as Geoffroy, Foulques le Réchin names his parents as Gauffridus and Ermengardis in a donation of 1074×6 [Halphen (1906), 134, 310-1 (act #232)]. The fragment of Angevin history claiming to have been written by Foulques IV in his twenty-eighth year also gives Geoffroy as the name of his father ["Ego Fulco, comes Andegavensis, qui fui filius Gosfridi de Castro Landono & Ermengardis, filie Fulconis comitis Andegavensis, et nepos Gosfridi Martelli, qui fuit filius ejusdem avi mei Fulconis et frater matris mee, cum tenuissem consulatum Andegavinum viginti octo annis ..." Fragmentum Historiae Andegavensis, Halphen-Poupardin (1913), 232]. Of great importance are the Saint-Aubin genealogies, evidently composed during the reign of Foulques IV le Réchin, which not only give the name of the father of Geoffroy III and Foulques IV, but provide his maternal ancestry: "Letaldus comes Vesconsiosis (et Umbertus comes Matisconiensis fratres fuerunt ...); ex Letaldo Albericus natus est; ex Alberico Beatrix; ex Beatrice Gosfridus comes de Castello Landonensi. Ex Gaufrido Gaufridus et Fulco presens." [Poupardin (1900), 208; see the table below]

Thus, the father of Geoffroy le Barbu and Foulques le Réchin was a count Geoffroy of Gâtinais, and this brings up the problem of how to reconcile the various statements that the father's name was Aubry. We first need to examine the earlier counts of Gâtinais more closely.

The parentage of count Geoffroy of Gâtinais

In addition to the above sources, there are two records from a slightly earlier period which mention counts of Gâtinais (or Château-Landon) in a genealogical context. First, there is a letter of Abbo of Fleury written in 997 to Pope Gregory V, which complained that Qauz[-], nepos of count Wal[-] of Château-Landon (who was then at Rome), was ravaging church lands ["... Est quidem Qauz, nepos Wal comitis de castro Nantonis, qui devastat possessiones nostri monasterii; de quo precor ut cum ipso Wal, qui nunc Romae est, loquamini, minando contra ejus nepotem virgam excommunicationis nisi resipuerit, si inveni gratiam in oculis vestris; ..." PL 139: 421]. The two names were abbreviated, but are generally interpreted as Walterius (Gautier) and Q[u]auzfridus (Geoffroy). While this record is of major interest in trying to determine the succession of the counts of Gâtinais, it will not be of immediate relevance in determining the parentage of Geoffroy.

Of more importance is the following charter of bishop Franco of Paris, dated 26 May 1028 (with the most important parts emphasized in bold face):
"In nomine regis eterni. Ego Franco, annuente Dei clementia, Parisiorum humilis episcopus, notum fieri volumus tam presentium etati quam futurorum posteritati, quia donnus Rainaldus episcopus, noster predecessor, dedit quasdam villas, inconsulte et absque consilio regalis potestatis, de mensa episcopi, videlicet Buxas et Cabiosas, sitas in comitatu Vuastinensi, Gosfredo, comiti Landonensis castri; quod et factum est pro nulla utilitate ecclesie, sed propter vuerram et discordiam que tunc temporis erat inter patrem suum nomine Burchardum, et comitem Odonem, quod ita longo tempore permansit. Postea vero, auxiliante Domino nostro atque genetrice ejus Maria, necnon patrocinante juvamine domini nostri piisimi regis Reberti atque Constantie, ejus conjugis, nobilissime regine, et per nostram apud eos humilem deprecationem, talis facta est conventio inter nos et Albericum, illius supradicti Gosfredi filium et heredem, et insuper, faventibus fratribus ipsius Alberici, filiis Hugonis Pertice, scilicet Gosfredo et Letoldo, quia unam ex ipsis potestatibus, nomine Cabiosas, cum ecclesia que est in illa villa, reddiderunt; alteram vero ecclesiam, que est in villa que dicitur Buxas, similiter reddiderunt, ea videlicet ratione ut, quamdiu Adraldus clericus advixerit, eandem ecclesiam teneat nobisque censum de ea reddat, et post ejus ad hac vita discessum, ad jus Sancte Marie et nostrum redeat. Cetera autem ad easdem villas pertinentia, ipsi Alberico et duobus heredibus ejus per manus firmitatem concedimus; eo videlicet tenore ut omni anno, in festivitate Sancte Marie, que est VI idus septembris, in censum x solidos denariorum ad mensam nostram persolvant. Quod si inde negligentes apparuerint, legaliter emendent et minime perdant. Ut autem hec manus firmitas vigorem per omnia teneat, auctoritate domini nostri regis et regine atque prolis eorum, manu propria eam firmavimus, fidelibusque nostris clericis ac laicis corroborandam tradidimus. Actum apud monasterium Kalas, VII kal. junii, regnante serenissimo rege Roberto anno XXXº, Henrico autem ejus filio II. S. Rotberti regis. S. Henrici regis. S. Constantie regine. S. Rotberti ejus filii/ S. Franconis episcopi. S. Gosfredi decani. S. Olrici archidiaconi. S. Lisierni archidiaconi. S. Alberti archidiaconi .... S. Waleranni comitis. S. Drogonis comitis .... Harduinus scripsit atque recensuit vice Lantberti cancellarii."
[Cart. Notre-Dame de Paris, 1: 326-7 (#19); also printed (with minor differences) in Devaux (1885), 81-2 (Pièces justificatives II, quoted here); Watson (1897), 4; for the date of 1028 (as opposed to 1026), see Estournet (1928), 122]

Thus, we see that during the war between the counts Bouchard of Vendôme and Eudes of Blois (i.e., 991 [see Lex (1892), 64-72]), the count of Gâtinais was a count Geoffroy, probably to be identified with the Geoffroy who was count in 979 and 984 [see Settipani (1997), 233], and that in 1028, his son and heir was a certain count Aubry, whose brothers (by the same mother) Geoffroy and Liétaud, sons of Hugues du Perche, were his heirs. Our main raw data can be outlined in tabular form as follows.

Although the sources do not explicitly identify the woman ("NN" in the above table) who married both Geoffroy of Château-Landon (Gâtinais) and Hugues du Perche with Béatrix de Mâcon, it is not difficult to see that there is no other reasonable possibility. Béatrix's son Geoffroy had to be living in the early 1040's in order to be the father of Foulques IV, so her son Geoffroy was not the count who died before 1028, and her husband could not have been count Aubry, since he had no children in 1028 (his half-brothers were his heirs) and any hypothetical child of his born after 1028 would be too young to be the father of Geoffroy III and Foulques IV of Anjou. Thus, the chronology, along with the obvious onomastic observation that "NN" had sons named Aubry and Liétaud, while Béatrix had a father and grandfather with the same names, clinches the identification. This leads to several alternatives:

Scenario 1: The twelfth century sources are correct in making Aubry and not Geoffroy the father of Geoffroy III and Foulques IV of Anjou.
This scenario was widely assumed by earlier authors who were not aware of the above charter evidence [e.g., Devaux (1885, 1892)], but has now been generally abandoned.

Scenario 2: Counts Aubry and Geoffroy of Gâtinais were the same person, a count with the double name Aubry-Geoffroy.
In order to reconcile the sources making an Aubry the father of Geoffroy III le Barbu and Foulques IV le Réchin with the sources making a Geoffroy their father, Ménage in 1683 suggested that the father's name was Geoffroy Aubry [Ménage (1683), 118]. Ménage was followed in this by Watson in 1897, but with the names in the other order ("Alberic-Geoffrey") [Watson (1897), 3]. Arguments which attempt to explain away inconvenient contradictions by identifying people with different names need to be treated with great caution, and it is unlikely that Aubry would use his younger brother's name as a second name. Furthermore, Béatrix is mentioned in Vita Gauzlini acting as countess of Château-Landon in 1030 or not long before, indicating that Aubry was probably deceased by that time, too early to be the father of Foulques IV [see Settipani (1997), 233-4]. Although this record does not conclusively prove that Aubry was deceased by 1030, it gives further evidence against an already weak theory. To accept this identification, one has to argue that Aubry was still living in the 1040's, and that Aubry used the name of his younger half-brother, based on no than the fact that sources of a century later conflict with the contemporary evidence. It is much more likley that this conflict is due to the confusion of two brothers, both counts of Gâtinais, one the uncle and the other the father of Geoffroy III and Foulques IV of Anjou.

Scenario 3: Geoffroy was a full brother of count Aubry.
This scenario directly contradicts the 1028 charter of bishop Franco, which makes Geoffroy and Liétaud maternal half-brothers of Aubry. Indeed, those who propose this scenario (or at least appear to do so) do not explain the evidence for their conclusions. Louis Halphen simply mentions Geoffroy and Liétaud as brothers of Aubry, without giving their parentage or mentioning that the charter only made them maternal half-brothers [Halphen (1906), 134]. It may be that Halphen was simply trying to avoid discussing the problem of the parentage of Geoffroy of Gâtinais as not being relevant to his discussion, but the resulting statement is certainly misleading. In direct contradiction to the charter of 1028, Maurice Chaume makes Aubry and Geoffroy sons of Béatrix by her first marriage to Geoffroy of Gâtinais and Liétaud a son of Hugues du Perche [Chaume (1925), 533]. Constance Bouchard makes both Aubry (Alberic) and Geoffroy the sons of Geoffroy of Château-Landon and Béatrix of Mâcon in a table [Bouchard (1981), 511 (Figure 2)]. When the evidence is cited later in the same article, she states that Béatrix was married to the lord of Château-Landon and was the father of the present Geoffroy, without mentioning the second marriage of Béatrix, thus encouraging the same conclusion as the table [ibid., 518: the father of Béatrix's sons is not explicitly identified on this page]. Bernard Bachrach makes Geoffroy of Gâtinais a son of Geoffroy [Bachrach (1993), 264] and of Béatrix [ibid., 201], but his table does not include Aubry, so it is not clear whether he is suggesting Scenario 2 or Scenario 3. Since no good reasons appear to have been offered for contradicting the charter of 1028, there is no good reason to accept this scenario.

Scenario 4: The father of Geoffroy III and Foulques IV was a count Aubry-Geoffroy, brother of count Aubry, and maternal half-brother of Geoffroy and Liétaud.
This suggestion [Moriarty (1945)] multiplies individuals without any good evidence, and is the result of carelessly combining the scenarios given in Watson (1897) and Chaume (1925), evidently without noticing that these were two contradictory interpretations based on the same evidence. This scenario can be discarded without hesitation.

Scenario 5: Geoffroy was a son of Hugues du Perche and (eventually) succeeded his maternal half brother Aubry as count of Gâtinais.
This scenario was evidently first suggested by Estournet (1928), and it appears to have been overlooked by both Bouchard (1981) and Bachrach (1993), neither of whom cite Estournet's article. More recently, this theory has been revived and persuasively argued in work by Settipani (1997, 2000) and Saint-Phalle (2000). This scenario assumes that the Geoffroy who was named in 1028 as one of the two heirs of his maternal half-brother count Aubry of Gâtinais was the same person as the count Geoffroy who was the father of Geoffroy III and Foulques IV of Anjou. Indeed, if one rejects the unlikely theory that Aubry and Geoffroy were the same person, then it is difficult to see who else count Geoffroy of Gâtinais could be, as it is clear from the chronology that he had to be living in 1028 (in order to be the father of both Geoffroy III and Foulques IV). The principal objection that could be advanced against this scenario is that the "succession" to Gâtinais would then appear irregular to modern eyes (assuming that the claim to Gâtinais came through Aubry's father). However, there is no need to apply "modern" standards to when we have clear contemporary evidence that Aubry's heirs were his two maternal half-brothers. For that reason, I see no need to strengthen the argument by making Geoffroy a lineal descendant of earlier counts of Gâtinais through various conjectures [as is attempted in Saint-Phalle (2000) and Settipani (2000)]. The facts that Geoffroy was a half-brother of the previous count and a son-in-law of the powerful count of Anjou seem to be a good enough claim in an age when there were still no clear "rules" for hereditary succession. Thus, the most natural interpretation of the evidence is that count Aubry of Gâtianis was followed as count by his maternal half-brother Geoffroy who was named as one his heirs in the 1028 charter of bishop Franco of Paris.


Bibliography

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Bachrach (1993) = B. Bachrach, Fulk Nerra, the Neo-Roman Consul, 987-1040 (University of California Press, 1993).

Ballu (1890) = C. Ballu, "De la suzeraineté des comtes d'Anjou sur le Gâtinais", Annales de la Société Historique & Archéologique du Gâtinais 8 (1890): 157-182.

Bouchard (1981) = Constance B. Bouchard, "The Origins of the French Nobility: A Reassessment", The American Historical Review 86 (1981): 501-532.

Cart. Notre-Dame de Paris = Benjamin Guérard, Cartulaire de l'église Notre-Dame de Paris, 4 vols. (Paris, 1850).

Chaume (1925) = Maurice Chaume, Les origines du duché de Bourgogne, (vol. 1, Dijon, 1925).

Devaux (1885) = J. Devaux, "Étude chronologique sur les comtes de Gâtinais", Annales de la Société Historique & Archéologique du Gâtinais 3 (1885): 55-83.

Devaux (1892) = J. Devaux, "Origines Gâtinaises" (parts I & II), Annales de la Société Historique & Archéologique du Gâtinais 10 (1892): 241-260.

Estournet (1928) = "Les origines historiques de Nemours et sa charte de franchises (1170)" (parts I-III), Annales de la Société Historique & Archéologique du Gâtinais 39 (1928): 105-158.

Guillot (1972) = Olivier Guillot, Le Comte d'Anjou et son entourage au XIe siècle (Paris, 1972).

Halphen (1906) = Louis Halphen, Le comté d'Anjou au XIe siècle (Paris, 1906).

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Lex (1892) = Léonce Lex, Eudes, comte de Blois, de Tours, de Chartres, de Troyes et de Meaux (995-1037) et Thibaud, son frère (995-1004) (Troyes, 1892).

Mabille (1871) = Émile Mabille, Introduction au Chroniques des Comtes d'Anjou (Société de l'Histoire de France, vol. 155, Paris, 1871).

Ménage (1683) = Ménage, Histoire de Sablé. première partie (Paris, 1683).

Moriarty (1945) = G. Andrews Moriarty, "The Origin of the Plantagenets", New England Historical and Genealogical Register 99 (1945): 34-7.

PL = P. Migne, Patrologiae Cursus Completus, series Latina, 221 vols. (Paris, 1844-1859).

Poupardin (1900) = René Poupardin, "Généalogies angevines du XIe siècle", Mélanges d'Archéologie et d'Histoire (Paris, Rome) 20 (1900):199-208.

RHF = Recueil des historiens des Gaules et de la France.

Saint-Phalle (2000) = Edouard de Saint-Phalle, "Les comtes de Gâtinais aux Xe et XIe siècles", in Keats-Rohan & Settipani, eds., Onomastique et Parenté dans l'Occident médiéval (Oxford, 2000).

Settipani (1997) = Christian Settipani, "Les comtes d'Anjou et leur alliances aux Xe et XIe siècles", in K. S. B. Keats-Rohan, ed., Family Trees and the Roots of Politics (Woodbridge, Suffolk, 1997): 211-267.

Settipani (2000) = Christian Settipani, "Les vicomtes de Châteaudun et leur alliés", in Keats-Rohan & Settipani, eds., Onomastique et Parenté dans l'Occident médiéval (Oxford, 2000), 247-261.

Spicilegium = Luc d'Achery, Spicilegium sive collectio veterum aliquot scriptorum qui in Galliæ bibliothecis delituerant, 3 vols. in folio (Paris, 1723).

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Compiled by Stewart Baldwin

First uploaded 11 May 2006.

Minor revision uploaded 24 April 2008.

Minor revision uploaded 24 January 2011.

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