1120 - 1149 A.D - The Templars

Intro

Intro paragraph

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(Feature Photo: Illustration of the crowning of King Louis VI from the 14th century Grandes Chroniques de France)

 

1120  

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Henry V is the Holy Roman/German emperor, Matilda (Henry I’s daughter) is his queen  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

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At this time, Europe is mostly made up of the Holy Roman Empire that included: Poland, Hungary, France, Italy, England, Sweden, as well as Spain that is broken up into Portugal, Leon & Castille, Al-Andalus, Aragon and County of Barcelona, then there is the Byzantine Empire which has the whole of Greece and part of Turkey, then there’s the Seljuq Empire in the Middle East (including Israel).

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Louis VII is born to king Louis VI and Adèlaide of Maurienne (he will both marry and divorce Eleanor of Aquitaine)

The Bible is not in the hands of the people yet, no printing press, no one is memorizing Bible verses, the Catholic Church wields tremendous spiritual power over the kingdoms of Europe—France, Germany, England, Italy, Spain, then there is also the Christian Byzantine Empire

January 16, The Council of Nablus convenes under the auspices of King Baldwin II of Jerusalem and Warmund, the Latin patriarch of Jerusalem and was...

“...attended by many of the highest-ranking churchmen in the Holy Land, including the archbishop of Caesarea, the bishops of Nazareth, Bethlehem and Ramla, and—significantly, as it would later turn out—the priors of the Holy Sepulcher and the Temple of the Lord in Jerusalem. The purpose of the gathering at Nablus—a town nestled in a valley between two mountains in central Palestine, notable for its plentiful olive trees—was to provide a set of written laws, or ‘canons,’ by which the kingdom could be properly governed in a manner pleasing to God. The Council of Nablus produced twenty-five decrees…”

These decrees included declarations against sexual immorality including adultery, sodomy, bigamy, pimping, prostitution, theft, and sexual relations with Muslims, and the punishments ranged from penance and exile to castration and nose slicing (The Templars pg. 29-30)

“The Templars are founded as an order of Christian religious warriors by a French knight, Hugh of Payns, and (so it was later said) eight of his companions, who were looking for a purpose in Jerusalem in the turbulent aftermath of the First Crusade. The initial intention of this little band was to form a permanent bodyguard for Western pilgrims following in Christ’s footsteps on the dangerous roads of the Holy Land…Having received royal approval from the Christian king in Jerusalem and papal blessing from Rome, the Templars quickly institutionalized and expanded. They set up their headquarters in the Holy City in the al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount (known to Muslims as the Haram al-Sharif), sent emissaries to Europe to round up men and financial support and sought out famous patrons"

(The Templars pg. 4)

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 The Knights of the Temple

“The twelfth-century archbishop and chronicler William of Tyre explained that, ‘because…they live next to the Temple of the Lord in the king’s palace they are called the brothers of the Knighthood of the Temple.’" (The Templars pg. 34)

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November 25, William the Aetheling, son of Henry I and Matilda of Scotland, the literate, capable queen descended from the line of Wessex kings who had ruled England before the Norman Conquest, dies in a shipwreck on the White Ship as it makes its journey from Barfleur across the English Channel

 

1121 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Henry V is the Holy Roman/German emperor, Matilda (Henry I’s daughter) is his queen  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

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During the 12th century, the pilgrim’s guidebook The Pilgrim’s Guide to Santiago de Compostela is written, it helps pilgrims find their way to the pilgrimage site of Santiago de Compostela, which is the third most important pilgrimage site next to Rome and Jerusalem, in it, the author describes the Poitevins, who live in the duchy of Poitou in what is now France, as...

“...handsome, full of life, brave, elegant, witty, hospitable, and good soldiers and horsemen, and the natives of Saintonge as uncouth, while the Gascons—although frivolous, garrulous, cynical, and promiscuous—are generous as their poverty permitted” and as for the duchy of Aquitaine, one chronicler, Heriger of Lobbes, described it this way, “Opulent Aquitaine, sweet as nectar thanks to its vineyards dotted about with forests, overflowing with fruit of every kind, and endowed with a superabundance of pasture land...”

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Ali ibn Yusuf invades Iberia again

The people of Aquitaine are mostly of Romano-Basque origin (Eleanor Of Aquitaine pg. 5-6) 

 

1122 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Henry V is the Holy Roman/German emperor, Matilda (Henry I’s daughter) is his queen  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

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"In the 12th century, Europe is split into principalities called feudatories, each under the rule of a king, duke or count, and personal allegiance or fealty was what counted, this is expressed in the ceremony of homage, in which a kneeling vassal would place his hands between those of his overlord and swear to render him service and obedience, the most powerful lords could command obedience and aide from lesser rulers; a breach of fealty is generally held to be dishonorable, and although some paid mere lip service to the ideal, the threat of intervention in a dispute by one’s overlord often remained an effective restraint, on the other hand, an overlord is bound to offer protection, friendship, and aid to a vassal beset with enemies, so the system has its advantages"

(Eleanor Of Aquitaine pg. 3)

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Eleanor of Aquitaine is born, the daughter of William, tenth Duke of Aquitaine, her exact date of birth is unknown, but she is born into a Europe dominated by feudalism, in the 12th century there is no concept of nationhood or patriotism, and subjects owe loyalty to their ruler, rather than the state (Eleanor of Aquitaine, pg. 3) and she is raised in one of Europe’s most cultured courts and given an excellent education, she later became an important patron of poets and writers (she also became the mother of Richard I and John I of England) 

It is decided that the Holy Roman Emperor could invest bishops over secular lands but the pope would still be the only one who could invest bishops with their spiritual authority (History of the World, Map by Map, pg. 119)

 

1123 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Henry V is the Holy Roman/German emperor, Matilda (Henry I’s daughter) is his queen  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

St. Bartholomew the Great church is built in London, it is the city’s oldest surviving parish church (the gate house is from the 17th century)

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The Silk Road between Luoyang in China and Ctesiphon in modern day Iraq, is flowing, and the city of Dunhuang in China is thriving, it has become an important center for Buddhism, where Buddhist pilgrims and travelers from India reached the city via the Silk Road to spread the religion, over a 1,000 year period (between 336-1227) they dug what is now the famous Mogoa Caves in Dunhuang, decorating them with murals depicting aspects of Buddhist culture

(History of the World Map by Map pg. 102-103)

The dukedom of Aquitaine is wealthy, thanks to its export of wine and salt, and it is a land in which the religious life flourished, as its rulers erected and endowed numerous fine churches and abbeys, notably the famous abbey at Cluny, and the Aquitanian Romanesque cathedrals in Poitiers and Angoulême, built in the style typified by elegant archways with radiating decoration and lively but grotesque sculptures of monsters and mythical creatures (its overlord is King VI of France, even though the Kingdom of France is much smaller than it and all the other duchies in western France), the dukedom of Aquitaine includes the feudatory of Poitou, and the counties of Saintonge, Angoulême, Périgord, the Limousin, La Marche, and the remote region of Augvergne, the dukedom of wine-producing Gascony, or Guienne, with its bustling port of Bordeaux, and the Agenais is also part of Eleanor of Aquitaine’s inheritance    

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1124 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Henry V is the Holy Roman/German emperor, Matilda (Henry I’s daughter) is his queen  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire  David I begins his reign in Scotland

 

1125 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Henry V the Holy Roman/German emperor, dies and Lothair II ascends the throne until 1137 (Matilda, Henry I’s daughter is now no longer empress of the Holy Roman/German Empire, she had no kids with Henry V, and is now back on the market, will marry Geoffrey of Anjou, Count of Anjou in three years BKQ 72)  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire  David I is king of Scotland

Alfonso, king of Aragon leads a spectacular military raid far into southern Andalusia against the Moors as part of his Reconquista (Encyclopedia Britannica, The Templars pg. 50)

Lu You, the Song poet, is born in the Song Dynasty in China, he became a compassionate person who was extremely distressed over the widespread female infanticide and urged for the establishment of a maternity fund, he died in 1210 (History of China pg. 327)

 

1126 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Lothair II is Holy Roman/German Emperor  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor  Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire  David I is king of Scotland

Hugh of Payns (founder of the Knights Templars) sets off for France

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux is 36 years old and had been the abbot of his own monastery in Clairvaux (“clear valley”) in the county of Champagne... 

“...the monastery sat in secluded, marshy ground watered by the river Aube, flanked by two shallow hills: one planted with vines, the other with crops. Here several dozen white-mantled Cistercian monks lived under Bernard’s direction, following a strict, stripped-back monastic rule.”

(The Templars pg. 37)

“Sometime before October 1126, Bernard of Clairvaux received a letter from King Baldwin II of Jerusalem,” in which the king asked Bernard to help the Templars obtain approval from the pope for their order (The Templars pg. 38)

 

1127 

KINGS & RULERS: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Lothair II is Holy Roman/German Emperor  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor  Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire David I is king of Scotland

Henry I grants Rochester Castle to Corbeil, Archbishop of Canterbury, and his successors

Henry I arranges a marriage for Matilda his daughter, (she’ll become the mother-in-law to Eleanor of Aquitaine), to Geoffrey of Anjou, who is only fourteen, “The Normans had little affection for the Angevins and did not like to consider that Geoffrey might become their king.” (British Kings and Queens pg. 70)

“Somewhere between October 1127 and spring of 1129, Hugh of Payns and his companions…tracked down Henry I, king of England and duke of Normandy, whom Hugh pressed for permission to raise funds across the channel. Their encounter was recorded in the Anglo Saxon Chronicle: ‘Hugh of the Knights Templars came from Jerusalem to the king of Normandy; the king received him with great ceremony, and gave him great treasures of gold and silver, and sent him thereafter to England, where he was welcomed by all good men.’”

(The Templars pg. 41)

 

1128

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Lothair II is Holy Roman/German Emperor  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor  Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire  David I is king of Scotland

David I of Scotland builds an Augustinian abbey on forested land below the slopes of the old volcanic mound of Arthur’s Seat (where the Holyrood Abbey and House will later stand), the Abbey of Holyrood prospered from an early date and contained royal chambers for use by the sovereign (Holyrood Tour Book)

 

1129  

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  Lothair II is Holy Roman/German Emperor  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine emperor  Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire  David I is king of Scotland

Sunday, January 13, The Council of Troyes officially met. 

“The seat of the Count of Champagne, Troyes was a prestigious commercial hub whose skyline was dominated by two great religious buildings: the Romanesque cathedral of Saint Peter and Saint Paul, and the Abbey of Saint Loup, a famously learned house of Augustinian canons…Hugh had called the gathering so that the Templars could be officially recognized and given a form of quasi-monastic rule.”

(The Templars pg. 42-43)

Geoffrey of Anjou asks Henry I (his father-in-law) to give him custody of the castles along the French coast, and Henry I refuses, after this their relationship deteriorates rapidly, especially after Matilda leaves Geoffrey because she cannot abide him (by 1135 Henry I and Geoffrey are openly at war) (British Kings and Queens pg. 70)

King Baldwin II of Jerusalem attacks Damascus and “the Arab chronicler Ibn al-Qalanisi estimated that the Christian army was tens of thousands strong, thick with reinforcements from overseas.’” (The Templars pg. 41)

Bernard of Clairvaux writes his tract De Laude, and addresses it directly to Hugh of Payns, the character and purpose of the Templars occupy the first four chapters, and the remainder—a further nine chapters—was a guided tour of the sites of the Holy Land that the Templars were to defend, it begins with the Temple itself, then goes on to mention Bethlehem, Nazareth, the Mount of Olives, the river Jordan, the Holy Sepulcher and the villages of Bethpage and Bethany—popular pilgrim sites within a day’s ride of Jerusalem (The Templars pg. 49)

 

1130 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks; No Holy Roman Emperor (1125-1133)  Innocent II becomes the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome on February 12 (until 1143)  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor  Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire – David I is king of Scotland

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“The twelfth century was one of the richest times of Christian renewal in the whole Middle Ages. Monasticism was exploding in popularity, and flowering with a diversity unseen since the early days of the Church. ‘O how innumerable a crowd of monks has by divine grace multiplied above all in our days,’ wrote an abbot  in the 1130s. ‘It has covered almost the entire countryside of Gaul [i.e., France] and filled the towns, castles and fortresses.’ This was more than rhetoric: it has been estimated that between the middle of the eleventh and the middle of the twelfth centuries the number of religious houses in many parts of Europe had expanded by 1000 percent.” – “By the 1130s the war on the Iberian Peninsula had gained the political and spiritual status of a crusade.”

(The Templars pg. 37, 61)

 

The Islamic Almoravid Empire is stretched across northwest/east Africa and into what is now Spain and Portugal, and Alfonso the Battler of Spain has been fighting them for most of his adult life by this point, “in the 1130s and 1140s the Templars flooded into Spain”

(The Templars pg. 64)

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In the 1130s, a school of translators is established at Toledo in modern day Spain (which had been in Muslim hands from ______ and re-conquered by the Christians between 1030-1200) by Archbishop Raymond, they translate many Arabic and Hebrew works as many scientific and philosophic works by Greek scholars have survived only in the Islamic world, often translated into Arabic and added to by Muslim writers, in the 1100s they filtered into Europe, through areas such as Sicily and parts of Spain, such as Toledo, that had recently been conquered from Muslim powers, manuscripts of many works by Aristotle, Ptolemy, and Euclid were then translated into Latin and helped fuel the 12th century revival in scholarship (A History of the World Map by Map 105) 

 

1131 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks No Holy Roman Emperor (1125-1133)  Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor  Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire  David I is kind of Scotland  King Baldwin II of Jerusalem dies and Fulk of Anjou becomes king of Jerusalem

 

1132 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks  No Holy Roman Emperor (1125-1133)  Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome  John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor  Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

Fountains Abbey, a major Cistercian house, is founded in England

 

1133 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England  Louis VI is king of the West Franks; Lothair II (sometimes called Lothair III) becomes Holy Roman Emperor – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

 

1134 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England – Louis VI is king of the West Franks – Lothair II (sometimes called Lothair III) is Holy Roman Emperor – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

“In July, Alfonso the Battler, king of Aragón, set up camp outside the city of Fraga and commanded his servants to bring him his relics. He had quite an impressive collection. Over the course of a long and colorful career the sixty-one-year-old king had acquired fragments of the bodies or belongings of the Virgin Mary, several apostles, a few early Christian martyrs and assorted other saints, all of which were housed in small ivory boxes leafed with gold or silver and studded with precious gems. His finest relic of all was a piece of timber said to have come from the cross on which Jesus was crucified, which had been carved into a small crucifix and was kept in a jewel-encrusted ark made of solid gold. Alfonso had stolen it from a monastery in León, on the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela,”

(The Templars pg. 52-54)
 

Alfonso tried attacking the relief train of camels that were bringing relief into the city, but it was a trap and Alfonso’s whole army and camp were either captured or killed, he dies on September 7 most likely from wounds sustained in battle, he left a third of his kingdom to the Templars—and the other thirds to other orders—which meant they now had a part in the Reconquista in Spain, as well as land, power, and even people subject to them 

His brother, Ramiro is bishop of Barbastro-Roda when Alfonso dies, the aristocracy takes him out of holy orders and puts him on the throne, despite Alfonso leaving the crown to the three religious military orders 

 

1135 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Henry I is king of England – Louis VI is king of the West Franks – Lothair II (sometimes called Lothair III) is Holy Roman Emperor – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

On December 1, Henry I, King of England, travels to the castle at Lyons-la-Forêt in upper Normandy to enjoy some hunting, but is taken ill the last weekend in November and his illness progresses terribly until he dies by the end of the week, aged 68 (buried in Reading Abbey), though Henry I made all the barrens swear fealty to his daughter Matilda, her cousin Stephen, upon hearing of his uncles death, quickly leaves Boulogne (the seat of his wife’s family), crosses directly to England and straight to London to have himself proclaimed King of England and is crowned in Westminster Abbey on December 26,

Matilda is pregnant with her third son at the time and couldn’t move as swiftly as her cousin – King Ramiro II of Aragon marries Agnes of Aquitaine

 

1136 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England (William the Conqueror’s grandson through his daughter Adela, Stephen is also married Matilda, the niece of his father’s first wife Matilda and granddaughter of Malcolm III of Scotland, she is also fifth in descent from Edmund Ironside, Stephen has thus married into the royal blood of Wessex) – Louis VI is king of the West Franks – Lothair II (sometimes called Lothair III) is Holy Roman Emperor – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

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King Steve

King Stephen of England is starting out as a popular king, affable nature, but a firm hand that rapidly commanded respect

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May 24 Hugh of Payns dies Petronilla is born to King Ramiro II of Aragon and his wife, Agnes of Aquitaine  

 

1137 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VI is king of the West Franks until he dies on August 3 and Louis VII becomes king (b. 1120, r. until 1180) – Lothair II (sometimes called III) is Holy Roman Emperor until December 4, when he dies and there is no Holy Roman Emperor until 1155, however, Conrad III is elected as king of Germany (formally called “king of the Romans”) until 1152, he is the first in the Hohenstaufen Empire that will last until 1250 – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

Eleanor of Aquitaine is left with a vast inheritance when both her brother and father die in this same year, she then becomes the most eligible heiress in Europe, that same year she marries prince Louis of France, and when King Louis VI of France (her father-in-law) dies this same year, Louis becomes king Louis VII of France and Eleanor becomes queen of France (the couple have two daughters)

Eighteen of the Knights Templars are besieged along with Fulk of Anjou, King of Jerusalem in the castle of Montferrand

King Stephen of England’s wife gives the Templars the wealthy and well-connected manor of Cressing, in Essex, (Now Temple Cressing), to which Stephen later added nearby land in Witham, he wanted the Templars on his side and not Matilda’s as they both fought for their right to the English throne, this period of war between them is called the Anarchy (The Templars pg. 61)

Petronilla is betrothed to Raymond Berengar IV, Count of Barcelona who is twenty-four (marriage ratified in 1150 when she was fourteen)

 

1138 

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks, Eleanor of Aquitaine is his queen – No Holy Roman Emperor (1338-1155) – Conrad III is king of Germany – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

Maimonides (Jewish Sephardic philosopher, physician and astronomer who wrote that King Solomon hid the Ark of the Covenant in a network of tunnels under the temple mount) is born in Córdoba, Spain

 

1139

KINGS & RULERS: Stephen is king of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks, Eleanor of Aquitaine is his queen – No Holy Roman Emperor (1338-1155) – Conrad III is king of Germany – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire

Matilda, Henry I’s daughter and cousin of Stephen, king of England, sails to England to take the throne by force, she’s supported by her half-brother, Robert of Gloucester and her uncle, King David of Scotland

Alfonso I wrests Portugal from fealty to the Kingdom of León, and establishes it as an independent kingdom (History of the World Map by Map pg. 379)

 

1140

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks – No Holy Roman Emperor (1338-1155) – Conrad III is king of Germany – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome

By this time the Templars have been gaining strength

“The Templars are building up vast networks of property in Champagne, Blois, Brittany, Aquitaine, Toulouse, and Provence, establishing commanderies to fix their local presence, dozens of Templar houses sprang up from the Gulf of Genoa to the new Atlantic kingdom of Portugal, which was also being clawed out of Islamic hands and resettled by Christians under the self-proclaimed first king of Portugal, Afonso I Henriques, during the 1140s, Afonso Henriques cleared the valley of the lower Tagus, eventually conquering as far south as Lisbon, where the river empties into the Atlantic Ocean"

(The Templars pg. 61) 

 

1141

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks – No Holy Roman Emperor (1338-1155) – Conrad III is king of Germany – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire 

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Nice Try, Matilda

Matilda’s (king Stephen’s cousin and wife of Geoffrey V, Count of Anjou) forces capture King Stephen at the Battle of Lincoln, but her attempt to be crowned in Westminster Abbey falls apart in the face of bitter opposition from London crowds

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1142

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks – No Holy Roman Emperor (1338-1155) – Conrad III is king of Germany – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor – Ali ibn Yusuf is the emir of the Almoravid empire 

 

1143

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks – No Holy Roman Emperor (1338-1155) – Conrad III is king of Germany – Innocent II is the 164th Pope/Bishop of Rome until September 24, when he dies, and on September 26, Celestine II becomes Pope/Bishop of Rome – John II Komnenos is the Byzantine Emperor until he dies on March 8, and his son Manuel I Komnenos becomes the Byzantine Emperor (b. 1118, r. 1143-1180), the fourth and youngest son of John II, he is chosen as emperor over his elder brother Isaac by his father on his deathbed, Manuel becomes an energetic ruler, launching campaigns against the Turks, humbling Hungary, achieving supremacy over the Crusader states, and tries unsuccessfully to recover Italy, his extravagance and constant campaigning however, will deplete the Empire’s resources (Wikipedia) – Ali ibn Yusuf, the emir of the Almoravid empire dies

 

1144

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks – No Holy Roman Emperor (1338-1155) – Conrad III is king of Germany – Celestine II is Pope/Bishop of Rome until March 8 when he dies and on March 12, Lucius II becomes Pope/Bishop of Rome 

 

1145

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks – No Holy Roman Emperor (1338-1155) – Conrad III is king of Germany – Lucius II is the 166th Pope/Bishop of Rome until February 15 when he dies and on March 12, Eugene III becomes the 167th Pope/Bishop of Rome

 

1146

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks

 

1147

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks

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Third Time's a Charm?

April 7 King Stephen is deposed, and Matilda is briefly queen up to November 1 when Stephen is restored to the throne 

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Eleanor of Aquitaine (and queen of France) accompanies her husband king Louis VII of France on the Second Crusade, traveling to Constantinople and Jerusalem (the crusade is a failure, and relations between the couple deteriorate even further as she doesn’t produce a son for him)

“In April 1147 he (Afonso I Henriques, first king of the new Kingdom of Portugal) issued a charter diverting the revenues of every church in the region of his castle at San-tarém into Templar hands, ‘for the…knights and their successors to have to hold with perpetual rights so that no clergy or layperson may make any claim in them.’ Later he swapped this with the Templars for a superb castle in Cera and allowed them to found a new town for their headquarters, which they called Tomar. Knitting the Templars into the affairs of his new kingdom brought security and prestige. It was also a practical way of colonizing and garrisoning newly won land.”

(The Templars pg. 61)

The Almohad Caliphate conquers the Almoravid Empire’s capital city of Marrakesh in Morocco, it was a North African Berber Muslim empire which, at its height, controlled much of the Iberian Peninsula (Spain and Portugal) and North Africa, at this point much of present-day Spain and Portugal is called the Al-Andalus and the Almohad capital there was Seville (1147-1162), Córdoba (1162-1163), then Seville again (1163-1248), so during this time was the “Reconquista” when the Spanish kingdoms in present-day Spain were trying to push the Muslims off their land  

Crusaders help the Portuguese to capture Lisbon from local Muslim rulers (A History of the World, Map by Map 106)

 

1148

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks

The Aragonese Templars help the king of Aragon lay siege to the city of Tortosa in present-day Spain (The Templars 65)

 

1149

RULERS & ROYALTY: Stephen is on the throne of England – Louis VII is king of the West Franks

The Aragonese Templars help the king of Aragon lay siege to the city of Lèrida in present-day Spain (The Templars pg. 65)