Monthly Archives: February 2017

Cináed mac Ailpín

On this day, 13 February 858, Cináed mac Ailpín (Kenneth MacAlpin), died. He was my 36th great-grandfather through one line and a multi-times (still trying to unravel this one) great-grandfather through another.

Cináed mac Ailpín was born in 810 in Iona, Scotland. The son of Ailpín, he is regarded by many as the founder of medieval Scotland.

By 843, at roughly the same time that the people of Wales were separated from the invading Saxons by Offa’s Dyke, Cináed mac Ailpín was creating the Kingdom of Alba (Scotia) by unifying the warring societies of the Anglos, Britons, Picts, and Scots.

His success was due in part to the continued threat of Viking raids. In 872, Harald Fairhair seized control of Norway, causing many of the jarls to seek out new lands. Norse settlements grew in Caithness, the Isle of Man, Orkney, Ross, Shetland, Sutherland, and the Western Isles.

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Categories: Cole-Marriner Line, Famous Faces and Places, On This Day, Royal Roots, Watts-Stark Line | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

William IX of Aquitaine

On this day 890 years ago—10 February 1127, William IX of Aquitaine died in Poitiers, France. He was my 27th great-grandfather through his son William X of Aquitaine and my two-times 29th great-grandfather through his daughter Agnes of Aquitaine.

William IX is best known as the earliest troubadour whose work has survived to modern-day (as evidenced by the video below). William IX’s songs are boisterous, amorous, humorous, sometimes coarse or raunchy, and full of courtly love.

Categories: Famous Faces and Places, On This Day, Watts-Stark Line | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Battle of Al-Manṣūrah

On this date, 8 February, in the year 1250, three of my kin fought in the Battle of Al-Manṣūrah, a key battle of the Seventh Crusade. These ancestors were Louis IX of France (my two-times 24th great-grandfather), Robert I of Artois (my 24th great-grandfather), and William Longespée (my 23rd great-grandfather).


Louis IX of France

Louis IX, born on 25 April 1214, was the eldest son of Louis VIII and Blanche of Castile.

On 27 May 1234, Louis married Margaret of Provence. Together, they had eleven children:

  1. Blanche, born 1240, died in infancy
  2. Isabella, born 2 March 1241
  3. Louis, born circa 23 September 1243
  4. Philip III, born 1 May 1245 (my two-times 23rd great-grandfather, through his son Phillip IV and through his daughter Margaret)
  5. John, born circa 1246, died in infancy.
  6. John Tristan, born 8 April 1250 – 3 August 1270), married Yolande of Burgundy
  7. Peter I, born 1251
  8. Blanche, born early 1253
  9. Margaret, born early 1255
  10. Rober, born 1256
  11. Agnes, born 1260
Categories: Famous Faces and Places, On This Day, Royal Roots, Watts-Stark Line | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

John of Gaunt

On this day, 3 February, in the year 1399, John of Gaunt died at the age of 58. He was my two-times 19th great-grandfather through both his son John Beaufort and his daughter Joan Beaufort.

Born on 6 March 1340, in Ghent, Flanders (now part of modern-day Belgium), John was the third of four surviving sons of Edward III and Philippa of Hainault.

In his infancy, John was created Earl of Richmond. With that title, John was admitted into the Most Noble Order of the Garter upon the death of Thomas Holland, Earl of Kent—one of the original knights of the Order.

As a young man, John was described as tall and well-built and was a well-known womanizer. In his young adulthood, John had an affair with Marie de St. Hilaire of Hainaut, a lady-in-waiting to his mother Queen Philippa. From this relationship, an illegitimate daughter, Blanche, was born in 1359.

Categories: Famous Faces and Places, On This Day, Royal Roots, Watts-Stark Line | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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