William I "Longsword", Duke of Normandy

William I "Longsword", Duke of Normandy

Male Abt 900 - 943  (~ 43 years)

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  • Born Abt 900  Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    History He was also known as Guillaume Longue-espee, in French.

    In 927, he succeeded as the Duke of Normandy, upon the death of his father.

    Most of William's career was spent in relative obscurity, but in the late 930s he suddenly emerged onto the stage of Frankish royal politics, first because of his war with Arnulf of Flanders, and then because of his support for King Louis IV (d'Outremer) at a time when Louis' star seemed to be fading.

    In December 942, at the peak of his good relations with Louis, Arnulf called for a peace conference with William. At the conference, William was murdered (traditionally, Arnulf is said to have arranged the murder). [see picture below]

    A Planctus (mourning poem) was composed probably shortly after William's death. Jules Lair suggests plausibly if not definitively that it was in 943. This poem, although it survives only in corrupt and incomplete versions and is largely hagiographic in content, nevertheless is a critical source for early Norman history. It is by far the earliest work written about the Normans from a Norman point of view, and some historical nuggets can be gleaned from it. [see picture below]  [2, 3, 4
    Died 17 Dec 943  France Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2, 3
    Buried Rouen Cathedral, Rouen, Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Tomb effigy of William Longsword in the cathedral of Rouen, dating to the 14th century
    Tomb effigy of William Longsword in the cathedral of Rouen, dating to the 14th century
    Siblings 4 siblings 
    Person ID I3052  | Roy Line, Boudreau Line
    Last Modified 5 Sep 2019 

    Father Rolf Ragnvaldsson, Duke of Normandy,   b. Abt 870, Mære, Norway Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 927 - 932, Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 62 years) 
    Mother Poppa de Bayeux,   b. Abt 872, Bayeux, Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married 0891 
    Family ID F2457  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Sporte de Bretagne  [1, 2, 3
    Married Abt 932  [2
    • The were married under pagan rites.
    Children 
    +1. Richard I "the Fearless", Duke of Normandy,   b. 933, Fécamp, Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 Nov 996, Fécamp, Normandy, France Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 63 years)
     2. Raoul D'Ivry
    Last Modified 6 Sep 2019 
    Family ID F2454  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Luitgarde de Vermandois,   b. 915 - 920,   d. 943  (Age 23 years)  [1, 3, 5
    Married 940  [1
    Notes 
    • Sewell gives their marriage year as 935. [3]
    Last Modified 3 Dec 2019 
    Family ID F2456  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - Abt 900 - Normandy, France Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 17 Dec 943 - France Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - Rouen Cathedral, Rouen, Normandy, France Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Photos
    William Longsword
    William Longsword
    Murder of William Longsword
    Murder of William Longsword
    Page of the Planctus
    Page of the Planctus

  • Sources 
    1. [S60] Stuart, Roderick W. Royalty for Commoners, The Complete Known Lineage of John of Gaunt, Son of Edward III, King of England, and Queen Philippa Fourth Edition, (Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, 2002).

    2. [S1460] Norr, Vernon M. Some Early English Pedigrees , (Washington DC: by author, 1968).

    3. [S65] Sewell, Robert James. Sewell: A History of the Sewell Family from the Earliest Times, (unknown: manuscript, March 2008).

    4. [S1500] Planctus for William Longsword, (Online http://www.ukans.edu/carrie/Planctus/Planctus/index.html).

    5. [S59] Weis, Frederick Lewis. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 Fifth Edition, (Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1982).



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