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Humphrey of Hauteville

Humphrey of Hauteville

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Humphrey of Hauteville surnamed Abagelard, was the Count of Apulia and Calabria from 1051 to his death.

Humphrey was probably the youngest son of Tancred of Hauteville
Tancred of Hauteville
Tancred of Hauteville was an 11th-century Norman petty lord about whom little is known. His historical importance comes entirely from the accomplishments of his sons and later descendants...

 by his first wife Muriel. Some sources make Geoffrey
Geoffrey of Hauteville
Geoffrey of Hauteville was a Norman military leader, the second youngest son of Tancred of Hauteville by his first wife Muriella. He joined his brothers in the Mezzogiorno around 1053, arriving with his half-brothers Mauger and William...

 and Serlo
Serlo of Hauteville
Serlo I of Hauteville was a son of Tancred of Hauteville by his first wife, Muriella, probably the youngest, though some sources call him the eldest. Born before 1010, he was the eldest son of Tancred's to remain in Normandy...

 his younger brothers. He is usually said to have accompanied his elder brothers William
William Iron Arm
William Iron Arm was a Norman adventurer, founder of the fortunes of the Hauteville family. One of twelve sons of Tancred of Hauteville, he journeyed to the Mezzogiorno with his younger brother Drogo in the first half of the eleventh century , in response to requests for help made by fellow...

 and Drogo
Drogo of Hauteville
Drogo of Hauteville succeeded his brother, William Iron Arm, with whom he arrived in southern Italy c. 1035, as the leader of the Normans of Apulia....

 to the Mezzogiorno
Mezzogiorno
The Midday is a wide definition, without any administrative usage, used to indicate the southern half of the Italian state, encompassing the southern section of the continental Italian Peninsula and the two major islands of Sicily and Sardinia, in addition to a large number of minor islands...

 circa 1035 on the basis of Goffredo Malaterra
Goffredo Malaterra
Gaufredo Malaterra was an eleventh century Benedictine monk and historian, possibly of Norman origin. He travelled to the southern Italian peninsula, passing some time in Apulia before entering the monastery of Sant'Agata at Catania, on the isle of Sicily...

; however, he may have arrived later, in 1044, during the reign of his elder brother William. Around 1047, he was granted the lordship (or countship) of Lavello
Lavello
Lavello is a town and comune in the province of Potenza, in the region of Basilicata of southern Italy; it is located in the Vulture traditional region, in the middle Ofanto valley.-History:...

 by his brother Drogo, whom he succeeded as Count of Apulia in August 1051. In his early years in Lavello, he employed a young Richard Drengot
Richard I of Capua
Richard I Drengot was a count of Aversa and prince of Capua .He was the son of Asclettin, count of Acerenza, younger brother of Asclettin, count of Aversa, and nephew of Rainulf Drengot, the Norman adventurer who had first travelled to southern Italy in 1017 and progressed to set up the first...

, who was later to serve him against the pope. In 1053, Humphrey received his three brothers, Geoffrey and their half-brothers Mauger
Mauger of Hauteville
Mauger of Hauteville was a younger son of Tancred of Hauteville by his second wife, Fressenda...

 and a younger William
William of the Principate
William of Hauteville was one of the younger sons of Tancred of Hauteville by his second wife Fressenda. He is usually called Willermus instead of Wilelmus in Latin annals and so is often called Guillerm instead of Guillaume in French...

, on their arrival in Italy. He granted Mauger the Capitanate and William the Principate
Principate
The Principate is the first period of the Roman Empire, extending from the beginning of the reign of Caesar Augustus to the Crisis of the Third Century, after which it was replaced with the Dominate. The Principate is characterized by a concerted effort on the part of the Emperors to preserve the...

.

His reign began amid the troubles which had ended his brother's. Humphrey vigorously punished the insitgators of his brother's assassination, especially the principal murderer. Many Norman knights were in rebellion and pillaging papal lands. Guaimar IV of Salerno
Guaimar IV of Salerno
Guaimar IV was Prince of Salerno , Duke of Amalfi , Duke of Gaeta , and Prince of Capua in Southern Italy over the period from 1027 to 1052. He was an important figure in the final phase of Byzantine authority in the Mezzogiorno and the commencement of Norman power...

 supported Humphrey's succession, but he was soon assassinated. Pope Leo IX
Pope Leo IX
Pope Saint Leo IX , born Bruno of Eguisheim-Dagsburg, was Pope from February 12, 1049 to his death. He was a German aristocrat and as well as being Pope was a powerful secular ruler of central Italy. He is regarded as a saint by the Roman Catholic Church, with the feast day of April 19...

 organised a coalition against the Normans and marched south. The pope's forces and those of the Normans fought the Battle of Civitate
Battle of Civitate
The Battle of Civitate was fought on 18 June 1053 in Southern Italy, between the Normans, led by the Count of Apulia Humphrey of Hauteville, and a Swabian-Italian-Lombard army, organised by Pope Leo IX and led on the battlefield by Gerard, Duke of Lorraine, and Rudolf, Prince of Benevento...

 near Civitate sul Fortore on 18 June 1053. Humphrey led the armies of the Hautevilles
Hauteville family
The family of the Hauteville was a petty baronial Norman family from the Cotentin which rose to prominence in Europe, Asia, and Africa through its conquests in the Mediterranean, especially Southern Italy and Sicily...

 (assisted by his younger half-brother Robert Guiscard
Robert Guiscard
Robert d'Hauteville, known as Guiscard, Duke of Apulia and Calabria, from Latin Viscardus and Old French Viscart, often rendered the Resourceful, the Cunning, the Wily, the Fox, or the Weasel was a Norman adventurer conspicuous in the conquest of southern Italy and Sicily...

) and Drengots
Drengot family
The Drengots were a Norman family of mercenaries, one of the first to head to the Mezzogiorno of Italy to fight in the service of the Lombards. They became the most prominent family after the Hautevilles.-Origins:...

 (assisted by Richard Drengot) against the combined forces of the Papacy and the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
The Holy Roman Empire was a realm that existed from 962 to 1806 in Central Europe.It was ruled by the Holy Roman Emperor. Its character changed during the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period, when the power of the emperor gradually weakened in favour of the princes...

. The Normans destroyed the papal army and captured the pope, whom they imprisoned in Benevento
Benevento
Benevento is a town and comune of Campania, Italy, capital of the province of Benevento, 50 km northeast of Naples. It is situated on a hill 130 m above sea-level at the confluence of the Calore Irpino and Sabato...

, which they had been authorised by the emperor to capture in 1047. They finally released him on 12 March 1054. Leo died soon after.

In the aftermath of Civitate, the Normans under Humphrey took advantage of the severely weakened papacy to further their conquest. He took Oria
Oria
-Places:Italy* Oria, Apulia, a town in the Apulia region, Province of Brindisi* Oria, Lombardy, a village in the municipality of Valsolda, in the Province of ComoSpain* Oria, Spain, a municipality in the Province of Almería, Andalusia...

, Nardò
Nardò
Nardò is a town and comune of 31,185 inhabitants and comune in the southern Italian region of Apulia, in the province of Lecce.-History:...

, and Lecce
Lecce
Lecce is a historic city of 95,200 inhabitants in southern Italy, the capital of the province of Lecce, the second province in the region by population, as well as one of the most important cities of Puglia...

 by the end of 1055. Robert Guiscard, the hero of Civitate, meanwhile conquered Minervino Murge
Minervino Murge
Minervino Murge is a town and comune in the province of Barletta-Andria-Trani in western Puglia, southern Italy, on the western flank of the Murgia Barese mountain chain. It is 16 km south of Canosa di Puglia and 17 km north of Spinazzola, in the Alta Murgia National Park.The town's...

, Otranto
Otranto
Otranto is a town and comune in the province of Lecce , in a fertile region once famous for its breed of horses.It is located on the east coast of the Salento peninsula. The Strait of Otranto, to which the city gives its name, connects the Adriatic Sea with the Ionian Sea and Italy with Albania...

, and Gallipoli
Gallipoli
The Gallipoli peninsula is located in Turkish Thrace , the European part of Turkey, with the Aegean Sea to the west and the Dardanelles straits to the east. Gallipoli derives its name from the Greek "Καλλίπολις" , meaning "Beautiful City"...

 before Humphrey sent him back to Calabria in fear of his growing power and influence. Upon his death in 1057 (or 1056 according to some sources), Humphrey was succeeded as count by Robert. Humphrey had given Guiscard the guardianship of his young sons, but Guiscard confiscated their inheritance.

Relatives


Humphrey's wife was called a "sister of the Duke of Sorrento" by Amatus of Montecassino
Amatus of Montecassino
Amatus of Montecassino , a Benedictine monk at the Abbey of Montecassino is one of three Italo-Norman chroniclers, the others being William of Apulia and Goffredo Malaterra...

. This would make her Gaitelgrima
Gaitelgrima
Gaitelgrima is a Lombard feminine name. There are several notable Gaitelgrimas in history. The identities of these four women are often confused because they were all closely related to each other and to two men: Guaimar III of Salerno and his son, Guaimar IV, whose enumeration is often altered...

, a daughter of Guaimar III of Salerno
Guaimar III of Salerno
Guaimar III was duke of Salerno from around 994 to his death. His date of death is sometimes given as 1030 or 1031, but the most reliable sources consistently indicate 1027. Under his reign, Salerno entered an era of great splendour...

. It is often stated that his wife was Gaitelgrima
Gaitelgrima, daughter of Guaimar IV
Gaitelgrima was the daughter of Guaimar IV of Salerno and Gemma. She was married off by her brother Gisulf II of Salerno to Jordan I of Capua as was her sister, Sichelgaita, to Robert Guiscard....

, the widow of his brother Drogo, however this is impossible. Humphrey had two children:
  • Abagelard
    Abelard of Hauteville
    Abelard of Hauteville was the eldest son of Humphrey, count of Apulia and Calabria , and his Lombard wife, Gaitelgrima of Salerno, also known as Altrude...

    , born after 1044 and died in Greece
    Greece
    Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

     in 1081
  • Herman
    Herman of Hauteville
    Herman of Hauteville was the younger son of Humphrey, count of Apulia and Calabria , and his Lombard wife, Gaitelgrima of Salerno, also known as Altrude...

    , born after 1045 and died in Byzantium
    Byzantium
    Byzantium was an ancient Greek city, founded by Greek colonists from Megara in 667 BC and named after their king Byzas . The name Byzantium is a Latinization of the original name Byzantion...

     in 1097


We know that Humphrey also had at least one daughter because of a story told by Amatus. Abelard was fleeing Robert Guiscard with "Gradilon, the husband of his sister" in 1078 when in revolt against his uncle. Gradilon was captured by the Guiscard's troops near Trevico
Trevico
Trevico is a town and comune in the province of Avellino, Campania, Italy....

 in the summer of 1079 and blinded.

Sources

  • Ghisalberti, Albert (ed). Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani: II Albicante – Ammannati. Rome
    Rome
    Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

    , 1960.
  • Gwatkin, H.M., Whitney, J.P. (ed) et al. The Cambridge Medieval History: Volume III. Cambridge University Press
    Cambridge University Press
    Cambridge University Press is the publishing business of the University of Cambridge. Granted letters patent by Henry VIII in 1534, it is the world's oldest publishing house, and the second largest university press in the world...

    , 1926.
  • Norwich, John Julius
    John Julius Norwich
    John Julius Cooper, 2nd Viscount Norwich CVO — known as John Julius Norwich — is an English historian, travel writer and television personality.-Early life:...

    . The Normans in the South 1016-1130. Longmans: London
    London
    London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

    , 1967.
  • Chalandon, Ferdinand. Histoire de la domination normande en Italie et en Sicilie. Paris
    Paris
    Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

    , 1907.
  • Gravett, Christopher, and Nicolle, David. The Normans: Warrior Knights and their Castles. Osprey Publishing
    Osprey Publishing
    Osprey Publishing is an Oxford-based publishing company specializing in military history. Predominantly an illustrated publisher, many of their books contain full-colour artwork plates, maps and photographs, and the company produces over a dozen ongoing series, each focusing on a specific aspect of...

    : Oxford
    Oxford
    The city of Oxford is the county town of Oxfordshire, England. The city, made prominent by its medieval university, has a population of just under 165,000, with 153,900 living within the district boundary. It lies about 50 miles north-west of London. The rivers Cherwell and Thames run through...

    , 2006.
  • Beech, George. A Norman-Italian Adventurer in the East: Richard of Salerno. 1993.

External links