Ellie Wood Keith Genealogy

Alphonse VII, King of Castile and León

Alphonse VII, King of Castile and León

Male 1105 - 1157  (52 years)

Personal Information    |    Media    |    Sources    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name Alphonse VII  
    Suffix King of Castile and León 
    Born 1 Mar, 1105  Caldas DE Reis, Galice, Spain Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    History Alfonso VII was born on 1 March 1104, the son of Raymond, comte de Bourgogne and Urraca, queen of Castile and León. Nicknamed \'the Emperor\', he became king of León, Galicia and Castile in 1126 on the death of his mother.

    In November 1128 Alfonso married Berenguela of Barcelona, daughter of Ramon Berenguer III \'el Grande\', conde de Barcelona, Provence and Carcassonne and Aldonza/Doulce/Dulcia de Gevaudan, heiress of Provence. Alfonso and Berenguela had six children, of whom four would have progeny, including their sons Sancho III and Fernando II. Their daughter Sancha married Sancho VI, king of Navarre, and Constance married Louis VII, king of France.

    Berenguela died in 1149, and in 1152 Alfonso married Richza/Rikinsa of Poland, daughter of Wladislaw II, king of Poland, duke of Kraków and Slaski, and Agnes von Österreich. They had a daughter Sancha, who married Alfonso II \'the Chaste\', king of Aragón.

    By a mistress, an Asturian noblewoman named Gontrada Perez, Alfonso VII had an illegitimate daughter Urraca, who married Garcia VI, king of Navarre. By another mistress Urraca Fernández, widow of Rodrigo Martinez and daughter of Fernando Garcia de Hita, señor de Guadalaxara, señor de Hita y de Cuéllar, and his second wife Estefania Armengol de Urgel, he had an illegitimate daughter Estefania who would also have progeny as the tragic wife of Fernán Ruiz \'el Castellano\' de Castro, señor de la casa de Castro, murdered by her husband.

    Alfonso was a dignified and somewhat enigmatic figure. A vague tradition had always assigned the title of emperor to the sovereign who held León. Sancho \'the Great\' considered it the _imperiale culmen_ and minted coins with the inscription _Imperator Toitus Hispaniae_ after being crowned in León. This sovereign was considered the most direct representative of the Visigoth kings who were themselves the representatives of the Roman Empire. But though given in charters, and claimed by Alfonso VI of León and Alfonso I of Aragón, the title had been little more than a flourish of rhetoric.

    In León, Alfonso VII was crowned \'Emperor of All Spain\' in 1135 after the death of Alfonso I of Aragón. The weakness of Aragón enabled him to make his superiority effective, although Alfonso I of Portugal never recognised him as liege, thereby affirming the new kingdom\'s independence. He appears to have striven for the formation of a national unity which Spain had never possessed since the fall of the Visigoth kingdom. The elements he had to deal with could not be welded together.

    Alfonso was at once patron of the church and a protector, if not a supporter, of the Muslims, who formed a large part of his subjects. His reign ended in an unsuccessful campaign against the rising power of the Almohades. Though he was not actually defeated, his death on 21 August 1157 in the pass of Muradel in the Sierra Morena, while on his way back to Toledo, occurred in circumstances which showed that no man could be what he claimed to be - \'king of the men of the two religions.\'

    Alfonso was succeeded by his sons Fernando in León and Sancho in Castile. Arnaldo, bishop of Astorga, wrote an account of Alfonso VII\'s life and reign known as the _Chronica Adefonsi Imperatoris._  [1
    Died 21 Aug, 1157  La Fresneda, Aragon, Spain, age 52 Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried 21 Aug, 1157  La Fresneda, Aragon, Spain Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I222  Ellie Wood Keith
    Last Modified 16 Feb 2018 

    Father Ramond De Bourgogne,   b. 1059, France Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 26 Mar, 1107, Spain, age 48 Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 48 years) 
    Relationship putative 
    Mother Queen Urraca I De Castille,   b. 1081,   d. 8 Mar, 1126, Spain, age 45 Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 45 years) 
    Relationship putative 
    Family ID F111  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Berenguela De Barcelone,   b. 1108, Spain Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 15 Jan, 1149, Palencia, Castille, Spain, age 41 Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 41 years) 
    Children 
    +1. Infante Don Fernando II De Leon,   b. 1137, Leon, Spain Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 22 Jan, 1188, Benavente, Castille, Espagne, age 51 Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 51 years)
    Last Modified 13 May 2017 
    Family ID F105  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Richeza De Pologne,   b. Poland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Jun 1185, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Sancha De Castille,   b. 21 Sep 1154-1155, Spain Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 9 Nov 1208, Aragon, Spain, age 54 Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 53 years)
    Last Modified 16 May 2017 
    Family ID F238  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Photos
    Alphonse VII King of Castile and Leon
    Alphonse VII King of Castile and Leon

  • Sources 
    1. [S64] Genealogics, Leo Van de Pas, http://www.genealogics.org/getperson.php?personID=I00020542&tree=LEO.