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Eleanor of AquitaineQueen and Rebel$
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Jean Flori and Editions Payot

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780748622955

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748622955.001.0001

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Duchess of Aquitaine and Normandy

Duchess of Aquitaine and Normandy

(p.56) 3 Duchess of Aquitaine and Normandy
Eleanor of Aquitaine

Jean Flori

Olive Classe


A great deal of discussion goes on today about Eleanor of Aquitaine's position with regard to power. This chapter can state now that the theory which makes King Louis VII a weak sovereign dominated by his wife, and Duke Henry of Normandy a tyrannical, domineering, controlling husband, must be abandoned or at least much emended. The legal documents do not support it. The chapter knows of about a score of them involving Eleanor between 1137 and 1152. Nearly all relate to Aquitaine, whose Duchess she was. All were issued before the French royal pair set off on the Second Crusade (which indicates that after the Antioch incident, King Louis had a real distrust of Eleanor). Even in ‘her’ hereditary lands, Eleanor usually acted jointly with the King, who also bore the title of Duke of Aquitaine, just as she did that of Queen of France.

Keywords:   Eleanor of Aquitaine, Louis VII, Henry of Normandy, Second Crusade, Queen of France

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