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Robert II, Count of Artois

Robert II
Count of Artois
Reign1250–1302
PredecessorRobert I
SuccessorMatilda
BornSeptember 1250
Died11 July 1302(1302-07-11) (aged 51)
near Kortrijk, County of Flanders
Spouse
Issue
HouseHouse of Artois
FatherRobert I of Artois
MotherMatilda of Brabant

Robert II (September 1250 – 11 July 1302) was the Count of Artois, the posthumous son and heir of Robert I and Matilda of Brabant.[1] He was a nephew of Louis IX of France. He died at the Battle of the Golden Spurs.

Life

An experienced soldier, Robert was named as regent of the Angevin Kingdom of Naples in 1285,[2] while the kingdom was engaged in the War of the Sicilian Vespers. He took part in the Aragonese Crusade and attempted an invasion of Sicily in 1287.[3] In 1288, Robert began work on a great park at Hesdin Castle. The park contained a menagerie, aviaries, fishponds, orchards, an enclosed garden and facilities for tournaments.[4] It also contained mechanical statues including waving monkeys draped in skins.[5]

He defeated the Flemings in 1297 at the Battle of Furnes.[6] He was again sent into Flanders in July 1302, where he began to ravage the countryside and attempted to take the town of Kortrijk (Courtrai).

Battle of the Golden Spurs

He then met the Flemish army at the Battle of the Golden Spurs. His infantry advanced with great success against the Flemings (mostly city militia), but he ordered their recall to allow his cavalry to make the final, victorious charge. But on the broken, marshy ground, his knights were unable to gain enough momentum to break the Flemish shieldwall, and they were knocked down and slaughtered. Robert led some of the reserves in a second charge in an attempt to reverse their fortunes. Artois was unhorsed by Willem van Saeftinghe. He and his troops were cut down by the Flemish infantry.[7]

Family

In 1262, in Paris, Robert married Amicie de Courtenay (1250–1275),[8] daughter of Pierre de Courtenay, Seigneur de Conches, a great-grandson of Louis VI, and Perronelle de Joigny. They had three children:

After Amicie's death, Robert married twice more: first, in 1277, to Agnes of Dampierre (1237–1288), heiress of Bourbon,[8] and then, on 18 October 1298 to Margaret (died 1342),[8] daughter of John II, Count of Hainaut. After Robert's death, his daughter Mahaut inherited Artois, but his grandson Robert III unsuccessfully tried to claim it.[1]

In popular culture

Robert II and his "contrivances for amusement"[9] at Hesdin are depicted in the segment "You’ve Been Artois’d!" from Horrible Histories, season 3, episode 1.[10]

References

  1. ^ a b Henneman 1995, p. 143.
  2. ^ Stanton 2019, p. 198.
  3. ^ Housley 1992, p. 204.
  4. ^ Landsberg 1995, p. 22.
  5. ^ Macdougall 1986, p. 117,127.
  6. ^ Funck-Brentano 1922, p. 375.
  7. ^ Dunbabin 1991, p. 178.
  8. ^ a b c d e Dunbabin 2011, p. xiv.
  9. ^ Fliegel, Stephen N. (2002). "The Cleveland Table Fountain and Gothic Automata". Cleveland Studies in the History of Art. 7: 16. ISSN 1092-3934. JSTOR 20079718.
  10. ^ "You've Been Artois'd!". Horrible Histories. Season 3. Episode 1. Retrieved 27 November 2021 – via YouTube.

Sources

  • Dunbabin, Jean (1991). A Hound of God: Pierre de la Palud and the Fourteenth-Century Church. Oxford University Press.
  • Dunbabin, Jean (2011). The French in the Kingdom of Sicily, 1266–1305. Cambridge University Press.
  • Funck-Brentano, Frantz (1922). The Middle Ages. Heinemann.
  • Henneman, John Bell Jr. (1995). "Artois". In Kibler, William W.; Zinn, Grover A.; Earp, Lawrence (eds.). Medieval France: An Encyclopedia. Routledge.
  • Housley, Norman (1992). The Later Crusades, 1274–1580: From Lyons to Alcazar. Oxford University Press.
  • Landsberg, Sylvia (1995). The Medieval Garden. Thames and Hudson.
  • Macdougall, Elisabeth B., ed. (1986). Medieval Gardens. Dumbarton Oaks.
  • Stanton, Charles D. (2019). "BATTLE OF THE COUNTS (23 JUNE 1287)". Roger of Lauria (c.1250-1305): “Admiral of Admirals,”. Boydell & Brewer. pp. 198–209. doi:10.2307/j.ctvd58tqg.18.
Robert II, Count of Artois House of ArtoisCadet branch of the Capetian dynastyBorn: September 1250 Died: 11 July 1302 Preceded byRobert I Count of Artois 1250–1302 Succeeded byMahautdisputed by Robert III
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Robert II, Count of Artois
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