Sicilian Connection Update

Roger I of Sicily at the battle of Cerami

Further to my last post cousin Hamish has pointed out that I have got the above slightly wrong having checked this out at GENEALOGY.EU  by Miroslav Marek, which only goes to prove that using an iPhone has major limitations. He’s added this to the family tree here. I used the Wiki links instead but the Sicilian link does start with Roger I Count of Sicily (1031-1101). I’m descended via his son Roger II, Count, later King, of Sicily (1095-1154) through Roger I’s 3rd and last wife Adelaide del Vasto. This seems to be different from the information my cousin Hamish has, which I’m guessing is from Miroslav Marek’s GENEALOGY.EU site. He has Roger II’s mother down as Eremberga d’Evreux. This is strange as according to the Wki Roger I’s first wife was Judith, daughter of William, Count of Évreux and Hawisa of Échauffour. His second was Eremburga of Mortain, daughter of “William, Count of Mortain” (probably William Warlenc). Therefore Eremberga d’Evreux seems to be a name made up from Roger I’s first wife Judith d’Evreux and his second wife Eremburga of Mortain.

I’ll take Roger II as being the son of Roger I’s third and last wife Adelaide del Vasto, niece of Boniface, Lord of Savona. She was later as Queen consort of Jerusalem due to her later marriage to Baldwin I of Jerusalem, as his third wife.

Adelaide del Vasto was the daughter of Manfred del Vasto (brother of Boniface del Vasto, marquess of Western Liguria, and Anselm del Vasto). Her father’s family was a branch of the Aleramici, sharing a common descent from Aleramo of Montferrat with the Marquesses of Montferrat. Her brothers founded the lines of the Marquesses of Saluzzo, of Busca, of Lancia, of Ceva, and of Savona. Her paternal grandparents were Teto II del Vasto, and his wife Berta, daughter of margrave Odalrico of Turin.

Roger II of Sicily

Roger II (Mileto 22 December 1095[1] – 26 February 1154) was King of Sicily, son of Roger I of Sicily (above) and successor to his brother Simon. He began his rule as Count of Sicily in 1105, later became Duke of Apulia and Calabria (1127), then King of Sicily (1130). Roger had succeeded in uniting all the Norman conquests in Italy into one kingdom with a strong centralized government. Roger II’s third marriage was in 1151 to Beatrice of Rethel, a grandniece of King Baldwin II of Jerusalem.

Beatrice and her daughter Constance

Roger II and Beatrice’s daughter Constance (1154-1198) was the heiress of the Norman kings of Sicily and the wife of Henry VI (1165-1197), King of Germany (1190-1197), Holy Roman Emperor (1191-1197). She was Queen of Sicily in 1194-1198, jointly with her husband from 1194 to 1197, and with her infant son Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor, in 1198.  Seems like Henry VI got a lucky break when  Leopold V, Duke of Austria, gave him his prisoner, king Richard I of England. The ransom of 150,000 silver marks was a huge sum for that age, and provided him with enough money to raise a powerful army to conquer southern Italy. It also amazes me how just how sickeningly ruthless these ancestors were. For example, when Henry was crowned King of Sicily he’s said to have have his young predecessor William III blinded and castrated, whilst also burning alive many Sicilian nobles. But apparently he was also a poet, which on one hand seems strange although no doubt this was probably normal for a medieval king.

Henry VI and Constance of Sicily

I seemed to have missed a few generations after Henry and Constance’s son Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor in my earlier post because I’m descended through his son Manfred (1232, Venosa – 26 February 1266) who was the King of Sicily from 1258 to 1266. Apparently, he was a natural son of the emperor Frederick II but according to the Wiki his mother, Bianca Lancia (or Lanzia), is reported by Matthew of Paris to have been married to the emperor while on her deathbed. Manfred first married Beatrice, daughter of Amadeus IV, count of Savoy, by whom he had a daughter, Constance (Hohenstaufens of Sicily d: 1302), who became the wife of King Peter III of Aragon. Their son Frederick II (or III) (13 December 1272 – 25 June 1337) was the regent (from 1291) and subsequently King of Sicily from 1295 until his death. He married Eleonore d´Anjou, of Naples (1289-1341), she was the third daughter of Charles II of Naples and Mary of Hungary. Her paternal grandparents were Charles I of Sicily and Beatrice of Provence. Her maternal grandparents were Stephen V of Hungary (died 1272) and his wife, queen Elisabeth, who was daughter of Zayhan of Kuni, a chief of the Cuman tribe and had been a pagan before her marriage. Frederick II/III and Eleonore d´Anjou‘s daughter Elizabeth of Sicily (1310–1349) married Stephen II, Duke of Bavaria, son of Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor and Beatrix of Silesia-Glogau. Frederick and Elizabeth’s second son was Frederick II (1339 – 4 December 1393), Duke of Bavaria from 1375. His second marriage was to Maddalena Visconti, daughter of Bernabò Visconti and Beatrice Regina della Scala. Their daughter Elisabeth (1383–13 November 1442, Ansbach), married to Frederick I, Margrave of Brandenburg. Their son John “the Alchemist”(1405–1465), Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach married in 1416 Princess Barbara of Saxe-Wittenberg (1405–1465). Their daughter Dorothea of Brandenburg (1431 – 10 November 1495) married Christian I of Denmark. Their daughter Margaret of Denmark, Queen of Scotland married James III of Scotland. Their son James IV of Scotland married Margaret Tudor, and I’m descended through their grandson son Robert Stewart, 1st Earl of Orkney (b.1533), who was the natural son of James V and Euphame Elphinstone. Guess this makes me a A Right Royal Bastard, but you can see for yourself the next 16 or so generations here.

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2 thoughts on “Sicilian Connection Update

  1. I agree that Roger II, Count, later King, of Sicily’s mother as Adelaide del Vasto. Roger I Count of Sicily other wives all died before Roger II was born. As also shown at GENEALOGY.EU. I now have it posted like that.
    Thanks. Hamish

    1. You are way more thorough than me, but was fun to find this all out while I was on holiday. Hard work too using just my iPhone. Must get one of those iPad thingies ;-)

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