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8 mars 2011 2 08 /03 /mars /2011 19:33

source : http://www.royal.gov.uk/

 

Henry I 'Beauclerc' (r. 1100-1135)
The Normans

William II was followed on the throne by his younger brother, Henry. He was crowned three days after his brother's death, against the possibility that his eldest brother Robert might claim the English throne.

After the decisive battle of Tinchebrai in 1106 in France, Henry completed his conquest of Normandy from Robert, who then (unusually even for that time) spent the last 28 years of his life as his brother's prisoner.

An energetic, decisive and occasionally cruel ruler, Henry centralised the administration of England and Normandy in the royal court, using 'viceroys' in Normandy and a group of advisers in England to act on his behalf when he was absent across the Channel.

Henry successfully sought to increase royal revenues, as shown by the official records of his exchequer (the Pipe Roll of 1130, the first exchequer account to survive). He established peaceful relations with Scotland, through his marriage to Mathilda of Scotland.

Henry's name 'Beauclerc' denoted his good education (as the youngest son, his parents possibly expected that he would become a bishop); Henry was probably the first Norman king to be fluent in English.

In 1120, his legitimate sons William and Richard drowned in the White Ship which sank in the English Channel. This posed a succession problem, as Henry never allowed any of his illegitimate children to expect succession to either England or Normandy.

Henry had a legitimate daughter Matilda (widow of Emperor Henry V, subsequently married to the Count of Anjou). However, it was his nephew Stephen (reigned 1135-54), son of William the Conqueror's daughter Adela, who succeeded Henry after his death, allegedly caused by eating too many lampreys (fish) in 1135, as the barons mostly opposed the idea of a female ruler.

 

The offical website of The British Monarchy

 

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