Louis IX of France

Louis IX of France

Overview
Louis IX commonly Saint Louis, was King of France from 1226 until his death. He was also styled Louis II, Count of Artois
Counts of Artois
The counts of Artois were the rulers over the County of Artois from the 9th century until the abolition of the countship by the French revolutionaries in 1790.-List of Counts of Artois:*Odalric...

 from 1226 to 1237. Born at Poissy
Poissy
Poissy is a commune in the Yvelines department in the Île-de-France in north-central France. It is located in the western suburbs of Paris from the center.In 1561 it was the site of a fruitless Catholic-Huguenot conference, the Colloquy at Poissy...

, near Paris, he was an eighth-generation descendant of Hugh Capet, and thus a member of the House of Capet
House of Capet
The House of Capet, or The Direct Capetian Dynasty, , also called The House of France , or simply the Capets, which ruled the Kingdom of France from 987 to 1328, was the most senior line of the Capetian dynasty – itself a derivative dynasty from the Robertians. As rulers of France, the dynasty...

, and the son of Louis VIII
Louis VIII of France
Louis VIII the Lion reigned as King of France from 1223 to 1226. He was a member of the House of Capet. Louis VIII was born in Paris, France, the son of Philip II Augustus and Isabelle of Hainaut. He was also Count of Artois, inheriting the county from his mother, from 1190–1226...

 and Blanche of Castile
Blanche of Castile
Blanche of Castile , was a Queen consort of France as the wife of Louis VIII. She acted as regent twice during the reign of her son, Louis IX....

. He worked with the Parliament of Paris in order to improve the professionalism of his legal administration.

He is the only canonised king of France; consequently, there are many places named after him, most notably St. Louis
St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis is an independent city on the eastern border of Missouri, United States. With a population of 319,294, it was the 58th-largest U.S. city at the 2010 U.S. Census. The Greater St...

, Missouri, in the United States, São Luís do Maranhão
São Luís, Maranhão
São Luís is the capital and largest city of the Brazilian state of Maranhão. The city is located on Ilha de São Luís in the Baía de São Marcos , an extension of the Atlantic Ocean which forms the estuary of Pindaré, Mearim, Itapecuru and other rivers. Its coordinates are 2.53° south, 44.30° west...

, Brazil and both the state and city of San Luis Potosí
San Luis Potosí
San Luis Potosí officially Estado Libre y Soberano de San Luis Potosí is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 58 municipalities and its capital city is San Luis Potosí....

, in Mexico.
Discussion
Ask a question about 'Louis IX of France'
Start a new discussion about 'Louis IX of France'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Timeline

1249   Andrew of Longjumeau is dispatched by Louis IX of France as his ambassador to meet with Mongol Khagan of the Mongol Empire.

1250   The Seventh Crusade is defeated in Egypt, Louis IX of France is captured.

1259   Kings Louis IX of France and Henry III of England agree to the Treaty of Paris, in which Henry renounces his claims to French-controlled territory on continental Europe (including Normandy) in exchange for Louis withdrawing his support for English rebels.

1260   The spectacular Cathedral of Chartres is dedicated in the presence of King Louis IX of France; the cathedral is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

1269   King Louis IX of France orders all Jews found in public without an identifying yellow badge to be fined ten livres of silver.

1270   The Eighth Crusade and siege of Tunis end by an agreement between Charles I of Sicily (brother to King Louis IX of France, who had died months earlier) and the sultan of Tunis.

 
Encyclopedia
Louis IX commonly Saint Louis, was King of France from 1226 until his death. He was also styled Louis II, Count of Artois
Counts of Artois
The counts of Artois were the rulers over the County of Artois from the 9th century until the abolition of the countship by the French revolutionaries in 1790.-List of Counts of Artois:*Odalric...

 from 1226 to 1237. Born at Poissy
Poissy
Poissy is a commune in the Yvelines department in the Île-de-France in north-central France. It is located in the western suburbs of Paris from the center.In 1561 it was the site of a fruitless Catholic-Huguenot conference, the Colloquy at Poissy...

, near Paris, he was an eighth-generation descendant of Hugh Capet, and thus a member of the House of Capet
House of Capet
The House of Capet, or The Direct Capetian Dynasty, , also called The House of France , or simply the Capets, which ruled the Kingdom of France from 987 to 1328, was the most senior line of the Capetian dynasty – itself a derivative dynasty from the Robertians. As rulers of France, the dynasty...

, and the son of Louis VIII
Louis VIII of France
Louis VIII the Lion reigned as King of France from 1223 to 1226. He was a member of the House of Capet. Louis VIII was born in Paris, France, the son of Philip II Augustus and Isabelle of Hainaut. He was also Count of Artois, inheriting the county from his mother, from 1190–1226...

 and Blanche of Castile
Blanche of Castile
Blanche of Castile , was a Queen consort of France as the wife of Louis VIII. She acted as regent twice during the reign of her son, Louis IX....

. He worked with the Parliament of Paris in order to improve the professionalism of his legal administration.

He is the only canonised king of France; consequently, there are many places named after him, most notably St. Louis
St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis is an independent city on the eastern border of Missouri, United States. With a population of 319,294, it was the 58th-largest U.S. city at the 2010 U.S. Census. The Greater St...

, Missouri, in the United States, São Luís do Maranhão
São Luís, Maranhão
São Luís is the capital and largest city of the Brazilian state of Maranhão. The city is located on Ilha de São Luís in the Baía de São Marcos , an extension of the Atlantic Ocean which forms the estuary of Pindaré, Mearim, Itapecuru and other rivers. Its coordinates are 2.53° south, 44.30° west...

, Brazil and both the state and city of San Luis Potosí
San Luis Potosí
San Luis Potosí officially Estado Libre y Soberano de San Luis Potosí is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 58 municipalities and its capital city is San Luis Potosí....

, in Mexico. Saint Louis was also a tertiary
Third order
The term Third Order designates persons who live according to the Third Rule of a Roman Catholic religious order, an Anglican religious order, or a Lutheran religious order. Their members, known as Tertiaries, are generally lay members of religious orders, i.e...

 of the Order of the Holy Trinity and Captives (known as the Trinitarians). On 11 June 1256, the General Chapter of the Trinitarian Order formally affiliated Louis IX at the famous monastery of Cerfroid, which had been constructed by Felix of Valois north of Paris.

Sources


Much of what is known of Louis's life come from Jean de Joinville
Jean de Joinville
Jean de Joinville was one of the great chroniclers of medieval France.Son of Simon de Joinville and Beatrice d'Auxonne, he belonged to a noble family from Champagne. He received an education befitting a young noble at the court of Theobald IV, count of Champagne: reading, writing, and the...

's famous biography of Louis, Life of Saint Louis. Joinville was a close friend, confidant, and counsellor to the king, and also participated as a witness in the papal inquest into Louis' life that ended with his canonisation in 1297 by Pope Boniface VIII
Pope Boniface VIII
Pope Boniface VIII , born Benedetto Gaetani, was Pope of the Catholic Church from 1294 to 1303. Today, Boniface VIII is probably best remembered for his feuds with Dante, who placed him in the Eighth circle of Hell in his Divina Commedia, among the Simonists.- Biography :Gaetani was born in 1235 in...

.

Two other important biographies were written by the king's confessor
Confessor
-Confessor of the Faith:Its oldest use is to indicate a saint who has suffered persecution and torture for the faith, but not to the point of death. The term is still used in this way in the East. In Latin Christianity it has come to signify any saint, as well as those who have been declared...

, Geoffrey of Beaulieu
Geoffrey of Beaulieu
Geoffrey of Beaulieu, from Évreux in Normandy, was a French biographer who died towards the end of the 13th century.From a noble family, nothing is known of the early life of this friar of the Dominican Order...

, and his chaplain, William of Chartres. The fourth important source of information is William of Saint-Parthus' biography, which he wrote using the papal inquest mentioned above. While several individuals wrote biographies in the decades following the king's death, only Jean of Joinville, Geoffrey of Beaulieu, and William of Chartres wrote from personal knowledge of the king.

Early life


Louis was born in 1214 at Poissy, near Paris, the son of King Louis VIII
Louis VIII of France
Louis VIII the Lion reigned as King of France from 1223 to 1226. He was a member of the House of Capet. Louis VIII was born in Paris, France, the son of Philip II Augustus and Isabelle of Hainaut. He was also Count of Artois, inheriting the county from his mother, from 1190–1226...

 and Blanche of Castile
Blanche of Castile
Blanche of Castile , was a Queen consort of France as the wife of Louis VIII. She acted as regent twice during the reign of her son, Louis IX....

. A member of the House of Capet
House of Capet
The House of Capet, or The Direct Capetian Dynasty, , also called The House of France , or simply the Capets, which ruled the Kingdom of France from 987 to 1328, was the most senior line of the Capetian dynasty – itself a derivative dynasty from the Robertians. As rulers of France, the dynasty...

, Louis was twelve years old when his father died on 8 November 1226. He was crowned king within the month at Reims
Reims
Reims , a city in the Champagne-Ardenne region of France, lies east-northeast of Paris. Founded by the Gauls, it became a major city during the period of the Roman Empire....

 cathedral. Because of Louis's youth, his mother ruled France as regent
Regent
A regent, from the Latin regens "one who reigns", is a person selected to act as head of state because the ruler is a minor, not present, or debilitated. Currently there are only two ruling Regencies in the world, sovereign Liechtenstein and the Malaysian constitutive state of Terengganu...

 during his minority.

His younger brother Charles I of Sicily
Charles I of Sicily
Charles I , known also as Charles of Anjou, was the King of Sicily by conquest from 1266, though he had received it as a papal grant in 1262 and was expelled from the island in the aftermath of the Sicilian Vespers of 1282...

 (1227–85) was created count of Anjou
Anjou
Anjou is a former county , duchy and province centred on the city of Angers in the lower Loire Valley of western France. It corresponds largely to the present-day département of Maine-et-Loire...

, thus founding the second Angevin
Capetian House of Anjou
The Capetian House of Anjou, also known as the House of Anjou-Sicily and House of Anjou-Naples, was a royal house and cadet branch of the direct House of Capet. Founded by Charles I of Sicily, a son of Louis VIII of France, the Capetian king first ruled the Kingdom of Sicily during the 13th century...

 dynasty.

No date is given for the beginning of Louis's personal rule. His contemporaries viewed his reign as co-rule between the king and his mother, though historians generally view the year 1234 as the year in which Louis began ruling personally, with his mother assuming a more advisory role. She continued as an important counselor to the king until her death in 1252.

On 27 May 1234, Louis married Margaret of Provence (1221 – 21 December 1295), whose sister Eleanor
Eleanor of Provence
Eleanor of Provence was Queen consort of England as the spouse of King Henry III of England from 1236 until his death in 1272....

 was the wife of Henry III of England
Henry III of England
Henry III was the son and successor of John as King of England, reigning for 56 years from 1216 until his death. His contemporaries knew him as Henry of Winchester. He was the first child king in England since the reign of Æthelred the Unready...

.

Crusading


When he was 15, Louis' mother brought an end to the Albigensian Crusade
Albigensian Crusade
The Albigensian Crusade or Cathar Crusade was a 20-year military campaign initiated by the Catholic Church to eliminate Catharism in Languedoc...

 in 1229 after signing an agreement with Count Raymond VII of Toulouse
Raymond VII of Toulouse
Raymond VII of Saint-Gilles was Count of Toulouse, Duke of Narbonne and Marquis of Provence from 1222 until his death. He was the son of Raymond VI of Toulouse and Joan of England...

 that cleared the latter's father of wrong-doing. Raymond VI of Toulouse
Raymond VI of Toulouse
Raymond VI was count of Toulouse and marquis of Provence from 1194 to 1222. He was also count of Melgueil from 1173 to 1190.-Early life:...

 had been suspected of murdering a preacher on a mission to convert the Cathars.

Louis's piety and kindness towards the poor was much celebrated. He went on two crusades, in his mid-30s in 1248 (Seventh Crusade
Seventh Crusade
The Seventh Crusade was a crusade led by Louis IX of France from 1248 to 1254. Approximately 800,000 bezants were paid in ransom for King Louis who, along with thousands of his troops, was captured and defeated by the Egyptian army led by the Ayyubid Sultan Turanshah supported by the Bahariyya...

) and then again in his mid-50s in 1270 (Eighth Crusade
Eighth Crusade
The Eighth Crusade was a crusade launched by Louis IX, King of France, in 1270. The Eighth Crusade is sometimes counted as the Seventh, if the Fifth and Sixth Crusades of Frederick II are counted as a single crusade...

).

He had begun with the rapid capture of the port of Damietta
Damietta
Damietta , also known as Damiata, or Domyat, is a port and the capital of the Damietta Governorate in Egypt. It is located at the intersection between the Mediterranean Sea and the Nile, about north of Cairo.-History:...

 in June 1249, an attack which did cause some disruption in the Muslim Ayyubid empire, especially as the current sultan was on his deathbed. But the march from Damietta towards Cairo
Cairo
Cairo , is the capital of Egypt and the largest city in the Arab world and Africa, and the 16th largest metropolitan area in the world. Nicknamed "The City of a Thousand Minarets" for its preponderance of Islamic architecture, Cairo has long been a centre of the region's political and cultural life...

 through the Nile River Delta went slowly. During this time, the Ayyubid sultan died, and a sudden power shift took place, as the sultan's wife Shajar al-Durr set events in motion which were to make her Queen, and eventually place the Egyptian army of the Mamluks in power. On 6 April 1250 Louis lost his army at the Battle of Fariskur
Battle of Fariskur
The Battle of Fariskur was fought on April 6, 1250, between the Crusaders led by Louis IX King of France and Egyptian forces led by Turanshah.-Background:...

 and was captured by the Egyptians. His release was eventually negotiated, in return for a ransom of 400,000 livres tournois (at the time France's annual revenue was only about 250,000 livres tournois, so it was necessary to obtain a loan from the Templars), and the surrender of the city of Damietta.

Following his release from Egyptian captivity, Louis spent four years in the Crusader kingdoms of Acre
Acre, Israel
Acre , is a city in the Western Galilee region of northern Israel at the northern extremity of Haifa Bay. Acre is one of the oldest continuously inhabited sites in the country....

, Caesarea, and Jaffa
Jaffa
Jaffa is an ancient port city believed to be one of the oldest in the world. Jaffa was incorporated with Tel Aviv creating the city of Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel. Jaffa is famous for its association with the biblical story of the prophet Jonah.-Etymology:...

. Louis used his wealth to assist the Crusaders
Crusaders
The Crusaders are a New Zealand professional rugby union team based in Christchurch that competes in the Super Rugby competition. They are the most successful team in Super Rugby history with seven titles...

 in rebuilding their defences and conducting diplomacy with the Islamic powers of Syria
Syria
Syria , officially the Syrian Arab Republic , is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea to the West, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, and Israel to the southwest....

 and Egypt. Upon his departure from the Middle East, Louis left a significant garrison in the city of Acre for its defence against Islamic attacks. The historic presence of this French garrison in the Middle East was later used as a justification for the French Mandate.

Louis exchanged multiple letters and emissaries with Mongol
Mongol Empire
The Mongol Empire , initially named as Greater Mongol State was a great empire during the 13th and 14th centuries...

 rulers of the period. During his first crusade in 1248, Louis was approached by envoys from Eljigidei
Eljigidei
Eljigidei was a Mongol commander in Persia, fl. He supposedly commanded a strong contingent when Chingis Khan invaded Khwarizm in 1219–1223. Ogedei was close to Eljihidey. That's why Eljigidei was given command over the Mongol forces in Persia, by the new khan Güyük in 1246, replacing Baiju...

, the Mongol ruler of Armenia
Armenia
Armenia , officially the Republic of Armenia , is a landlocked mountainous country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia...

 and Persia
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

. Eljigidei suggested that King Louis should land in Egypt, while Eljigidei attacked Baghdad, in order to prevent the Saracens of Egypt and those of Syria from joining forces. Louis sent André de Longjumeau, a Dominican priest, as an emissary to the Great Khan Güyük Khan
Guyuk
Guyuk may refer to:*Guyuk, Nigeria, a town*Uğurtaş, a town in Turkey, formerly called Güyük*Güyük Khan , the Great Khan of the Mongol Empire...

 in Mongolia. However, Güyük died before the emissary arrived at his court, and nothing concrete occurred. Louis dispatched another envoy to the Mongol court, the Franciscan William of Rubruck
William of Rubruck
William of Rubruck was a Flemish Franciscan missionary and explorer. His account is one of the masterpieces of medieval geographical literature comparable to that of Marco Polo....

, who went to visit the Great Khan Möngke Khan
Mongke
Mongke means "eternal" in Mongolian language and may refer to:-Medieval:* Möngke Khan , Great khan of the Mongol Empire* Yesü Möngke, khan of Chagatai khanate, 1247-1252* Mengu-Timur Mongke (also Mönkh, Monkh, Munkh) means "eternal" in Mongolian language and may refer to:-Medieval:* Möngke Khan...

 in Mongolia.

Patron of arts and arbiter of Europe



Louis' patronage of the arts drove much innovation in Gothic art
Gothic art
Gothic art was a Medieval art movement that developed in France out of Romanesque art in the mid-12th century, led by the concurrent development of Gothic architecture. It spread to all of Western Europe, but took over art more completely north of the Alps, never quite effacing more classical...

 and architecture
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

, and the style of his court radiated throughout Europe by both the purchase of art objects from Parisian masters for export and by the marriage of the king's daughters and female relatives to foreign husbands and their subsequent introduction of Parisian models elsewhere. Louis' personal chapel, the Sainte-Chapelle
Sainte-Chapelle
La Sainte-Chapelle is the only surviving building of the Capetian royal palace on the Île de la Cité in the heart of Paris, France. It was commissioned by King Louis IX of France to house his collection of Passion Relics, including the Crown of Thorns - one of the most important relics in medieval...

in Paris, was copied more than once by his descendants elsewhere. Louis most likely ordered the production of the Morgan Bible
Morgan Bible
The Morgan Bible is a medieval picture bible of 44 folios. It is also called the Morgan Bible of Louis IX, the Book of Kings, the Crusader Bible, and the Maciejowski Bible...

, a masterpiece of mediaeval painting.

Saint Louis ruled during the so-called "golden century of Saint Louis", when the kingdom of France was at its height in Europe, both politically and economically. The king of France was regarded as a primus inter pares among the kings and rulers of the continent. He commanded the largest army, and ruled the largest and most wealthy kingdom of Europe, a kingdom which was the European centre of arts and intellectual thought (La Sorbonne) at the time. The prestige and respect felt in Europe for King Louis IX was due more to the attraction that his benevolent personality created rather than to military domination. For his contemporaries, he was the quintessential example of the Christian prince, and embodied the whole of Christendom
Christendom
Christendom, or the Christian world, has several meanings. In a cultural sense it refers to the worldwide community of Christians, adherents of Christianity...

 in his person. His reputation of saintliness and fairness was already well established while he was alive, and on many occasions he was chosen as an arbiter in the quarrels opposing the rulers of Europe.

Shortly before 1256 Enguerrand IV of Coucy
Coucy
Coucy is the name or part of the name of several communes in France:* Coucy-la-Ville, in the Aisne département, very close to* Coucy-le-Château-Auffrique, in the Aisne département, location of:** Château de Coucy...

 arrested and without trial hanged three young squires of Laon whom he accused of poaching in his forest. In 1256 Louis had him arrested and brought to the Louvre
Palais du Louvre
The Louvre Palace , on the Right Bank of the Seine in Paris, is a former royal palace situated between the Tuileries Gardens and the church of Saint-Germain l'Auxerrois...

 by his sergeants. Enguerrand demanded judgment by his peers and trial by battle which was refused by the king because Louis thought it obsolete. Enguerrand was tried, sentenced and ordered to pay 12,000 livres. Part of the money was to pay for masses in perpetuity for the men he had hanged.

Religious nature


The perception of Louis IX as the exemplary Christian prince was reinforced by his religious zeal. Louis was a devout Catholic, and he built the Sainte-Chapelle
Sainte-Chapelle
La Sainte-Chapelle is the only surviving building of the Capetian royal palace on the Île de la Cité in the heart of Paris, France. It was commissioned by King Louis IX of France to house his collection of Passion Relics, including the Crown of Thorns - one of the most important relics in medieval...

("Holy Chapel"), located within the royal palace complex (now the Paris Hall of Justice), on the Île de la Cité
Île de la Cité
The Île de la Cité is one of two remaining natural islands in the Seine within the city of Paris . It is the centre of Paris and the location where the medieval city was refounded....

in the centre of Paris. The Sainte Chapelle, a perfect example of the Rayonnant style of Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

, was erected as a shrine for the Crown of Thorns
Crown of Thorns
In Christianity, the Crown of Thorns, one of the instruments of the Passion, was woven of thorn branches and placed on Jesus Christ before his crucifixion...

 and a fragment of the True Cross
True Cross
The True Cross is the name for physical remnants which, by a Christian tradition, are believed to be from the cross upon which Jesus was crucified.According to post-Nicene historians, Socrates Scholasticus and others, the Empress Helena The True Cross is the name for physical remnants which, by a...

, precious relic
Relic
In religion, a relic is a part of the body of a saint or a venerated person, or else another type of ancient religious object, carefully preserved for purposes of veneration or as a tangible memorial...

s of the Passion
Passion (Christianity)
The Passion is the Christian theological term used for the events and suffering – physical, spiritual, and mental – of Jesus in the hours before and including his trial and execution by crucifixion...

 of Jesus. Louis purchased these in 1239–41 from Emperor Baldwin II
Baldwin II of Constantinople
Baldwin II of Courtenay was the last emperor of the Latin Empire of Constantinople.He was a younger son of Yolanda of Flanders, sister of the first two emperors, Baldwin I and Henry of Flanders...

 of the Latin Empire
Latin Empire
The Latin Empire or Latin Empire of Constantinople is the name given by historians to the feudal Crusader state founded by the leaders of the Fourth Crusade on lands captured from the Byzantine Empire. It was established after the capture of Constantinople in 1204 and lasted until 1261...

 of Constantinople
Constantinople
Constantinople was the capital of the Roman, Eastern Roman, Byzantine, Latin, and Ottoman Empires. Throughout most of the Middle Ages, Constantinople was Europe's largest and wealthiest city.-Names:...

, for the exorbitant sum of 135,000 livre
Livré
Livré-la-Touche is a commune in the Mayenne department in north-western France. Prior to October 6, 2008, it was known as Livré....

s (the chapel, on the other hand, cost only 60,000 livres to build).

Louis IX took very seriously his mission as "lieutenant of God on Earth", with which he had been invested when he was crowned in Rheims. Thus, in order to fulfill his duty, he conducted two crusades, and even though they were unsuccessful, they contributed to his prestige. Contemporaries would not have understood if the king of France did not lead a crusade to the Holy Land
Holy Land
The Holy Land is a term which in Judaism refers to the Kingdom of Israel as defined in the Tanakh. For Jews, the Land's identifiction of being Holy is defined in Judaism by its differentiation from other lands by virtue of the practice of Judaism often possible only in the Land of Israel...

. In order to finance his first crusade Louis ordered the expulsion of all Jews engaged in usury
Usury
Usury Originally, when the charging of interest was still banned by Christian churches, usury simply meant the charging of interest at any rate . In countries where the charging of interest became acceptable, the term came to be used for interest above the rate allowed by law...

 and the confiscation of their property, for use in his crusade. However, he did not cancel the debts owed by Christians. One-third of the debts was forgiven, but the other two thirds were to be remitted to the royal treasury. Louis also ordered, at the urging of Pope Gregory IX
Pope Gregory IX
Pope Gregory IX, born Ugolino di Conti, was pope from March 19, 1227 to August 22, 1241.The successor of Pope Honorius III , he fully inherited the traditions of Pope Gregory VII and of his uncle Pope Innocent III , and zealously continued their policy of Papal supremacy.-Early life:Ugolino was...

, the burning in Paris in 1243 of some 12,000 manuscript copies of the Talmud
Talmud
The Talmud is a central text of mainstream Judaism. It takes the form of a record of rabbinic discussions pertaining to Jewish law, ethics, philosophy, customs and history....

 and other Jewish books. This was the first instance of such legislation against the Talmud as heretical in the history of Christendom, was due to mediaeval courts' concerns that its production and circulation might weaken the faith of Christian individuals and threaten the Christian basis of society, the protection of which was the duty of any Christian monarch.

In addition to Louis' legislation against Jews and usury, he expanded the scope of the Inquisition
Inquisition
The Inquisition, Inquisitio Haereticae Pravitatis , was the "fight against heretics" by several institutions within the justice-system of the Roman Catholic Church. It started in the 12th century, with the introduction of torture in the persecution of heresy...

 in France. The area most affected by this expansion was southern France where the Cathar
Cathar
Catharism was a name given to a Christian religious sect with dualistic and gnostic elements that appeared in the Languedoc region of France and other parts of Europe in the 11th century and flourished in the 12th and 13th centuries...

 heresy had been strongest. The rate of these confiscations reached its highest levels in the years prior to his first crusade, and slowed upon his return to France in 1254.

In all these deeds, Louis IX tried to fulfill the duty of France, which was seen as "the eldest daughter of the Church" (la fille aînée de l'Église), a tradition of protector of the Church going back to the Franks
Franks
The Franks were a confederation of Germanic tribes first attested in the third century AD as living north and east of the Lower Rhine River. From the third to fifth centuries some Franks raided Roman territory while other Franks joined the Roman troops in Gaul. Only the Salian Franks formed a...

 and Charlemagne
Charlemagne
Charlemagne was King of the Franks from 768 and Emperor of the Romans from 800 to his death in 814. He expanded the Frankish kingdom into an empire that incorporated much of Western and Central Europe. During his reign, he conquered Italy and was crowned by Pope Leo III on 25 December 800...

, who had been crowned by the Pope in Rome in 800. Indeed, the official Latin title of the kings of France was Rex Francorum, i.e. "king of the Franks" (until Louis' grand-father's reign, Philip II
Philip II of France
Philip II Augustus was the King of France from 1180 until his death. A member of the House of Capet, Philip Augustus was born at Gonesse in the Val-d'Oise, the son of Louis VII and his third wife, Adela of Champagne...

 whose seal reads Rex Franciae, i.e. "king of France"), and the kings of France were also known by the title "most Christian king" (Rex Christianissimus). The relationship between France and the papacy was at its peak in the 12th and 13th centuries, and most of the crusades were actually called by the popes from French soil. Eventually, in 1309, Pope Clement V
Pope Clement V
Pope Clement V, born Raymond Bertrand de Got was Pope from 1305 to his death...

 even left Rome and relocated to the French city of Avignon
Avignon
Avignon is a French commune in southeastern France in the départment of the Vaucluse bordered by the left bank of the Rhône river. Of the 94,787 inhabitants of the city on 1 January 2010, 12 000 live in the ancient town centre surrounded by its medieval ramparts.Often referred to as the...

, beginning the era known as the Avignon Papacy
Avignon Papacy
The Avignon Papacy was the period from 1309 to 1376 during which seven Popes resided in Avignon, in modern-day France. This arose from the conflict between the Papacy and the French crown....

 (or, more disparagingly, the "Babylonian captivity
Babylonian captivity
The Babylonian captivity was the period in Jewish history during which the Jews of the ancient Kingdom of Judah were captives in Babylon—conventionally 587–538 BCE....

").

Ancestry





Issue


  1. Blanche (1240 – 29 April 1243), died young
  2. Isabelle (2 March 1241 – 28 January 1271), married Theobald II of Navarre
    Theobald II of Navarre
    Theobald II , called the Young, was Count of Champagne and Brie and King of Navarre from 1253 until his death....

  3. Louis of France (25 February 1244 – January 1260)
  4. Philip III
    Philip III of France
    Philip III , called the Bold , was the King of France, succeeding his father, Louis IX, and reigning from 1270 to 1285. He was a member of the House of Capet.-Biography:...

     (1 May 1245 – 5 October 1285), married firstly to Isabella of Aragon
    Isabella of Aragon
    Isabella of Aragon , infanta of Aragon, was, by marriage, Queen consort of France in the Middle Ages from 1270 to 1271.-Life:...

     in 1262 and secondly to Maria of Brabant in 1274
  5. John (1248–1248), died young
  6. Jean Tristan of Valois
    Jean Tristan of France
    John Tristan of France was a French prince of the Capetian dynasty. He was jure uxoris Count of Nevers from 1265 to 1270, Count of Auxerre and Tonnerre and also Count of Valois and Crépy ....

     (1250 – 3 August 1270), married Yolande of Burgundy
    Yolande of Burgundy
    Yolande II or Yolande of Burgundy , was the daughter of Odo of Burgundy, and Matilda II, Countess of Nevers....

  7. Peter I of Alençon
    Peter, Count of Perche and Alençon
    Peter of France or Peter I of Alencon was the son of Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence. He became Count of Alençon in 1269 and in 1284, Count of Blois and Chartres, and Seigneur de Guise in 1272 and 1284.He was born in the Holy Land while his father headed the Seventh Crusade...

     (1251–84), married Joanne of Châtillon
  8. Blanche of France (1253–1323)
    Blanche of France (1253–1323)
    Blanche of France was a daughter of King Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence, and sister of King Philip III of France and Queen Isabella of Navarre.-Biography:...

    , married Ferdinand de la Cerda, Infante of Castille
    Ferdinand de la Cerda, Infante of Castile
    Don Ferdinand de la Cerda was the Crown Prince of Castile, eldest son of King Alfonso X of Castile and Violant of Aragon. His nickname, de la Cerda, means "of the bristle" in Spanish, a reference to being born with a strand of thick hair running down his chest.In November 1268 he married Princess...

  9. Margaret of France (1254–71), married John I, Duke of Brabant
    John I, Duke of Brabant
    John I of Brabant, also called John the Victorious was Duke of Brabant , Lothier and Limburg .-Life:...

  10. Robert, Count of Clermont
    Robert, Count of Clermont
    Robert of France was made Count of Clermont in 1268. He was son of King Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence...

     (1256 – 7 February 1317), married Beatrice of Burgundy. He was an ancestor of King Henry IV of France
    Henry IV of France
    Henry IV , Henri-Quatre, was King of France from 1589 to 1610 and King of Navarre from 1572 to 1610. He was the first monarch of the Bourbon branch of the Capetian dynasty in France....

    .
  11. Agnes of France
    Agnes of France, Duchess of Burgundy
    Agnes of France , Daughter of France by birth, was the youngest daughter of Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence. She served as regent of Burgundy during the minority of her son.- Family :...

     (ca 1260 – 19 December 1327), married Robert II, Duke of Burgundy
    Robert II, Duke of Burgundy
    Robert II of Burgundy was duke of Burgundy between 1271 and 1306, inheriting the title from his brother Eudes of Burgundy, who had no male heirs. Robert was the third son of duke Hugh IV and Yolande of Dreux...


Death and legacy



During his second crusade, Louis died at Tunis
Tunis
Tunis is the capital of both the Tunisian Republic and the Tunis Governorate. It is Tunisia's largest city, with a population of 728,453 as of 2004; the greater metropolitan area holds some 2,412,500 inhabitants....

, 25 August 1270, and was succeeded by his son, Philip III
Philip III of France
Philip III , called the Bold , was the King of France, succeeding his father, Louis IX, and reigning from 1270 to 1285. He was a member of the House of Capet.-Biography:...

. Louis was traditionally believed to have died from the bubonic plague
Bubonic plague
Plague is a deadly infectious disease that is caused by the enterobacteria Yersinia pestis, named after the French-Swiss bacteriologist Alexandre Yersin. Primarily carried by rodents and spread to humans via fleas, the disease is notorious throughout history, due to the unrivaled scale of death...

 but the cause is thought by modern scholars to have been dysentery
Dysentery
Dysentery is an inflammatory disorder of the intestine, especially of the colon, that results in severe diarrhea containing mucus and/or blood in the faeces with fever and abdominal pain. If left untreated, dysentery can be fatal.There are differences between dysentery and normal bloody diarrhoea...

. The Bubonic Plague did not strike Europe until 1348, so the likelihood of his contracting and ultimately dying from the Bubonic Plague was very slim.

Christian tradition states that some of his entrails were buried directly on the spot in Tunisia, where a Tomb of Saint-Louis can still be visited today, whereas his heart and other parts of his entrails were sealed in an urn and placed in the Basilica of Monreale
Monreale
Monreale is a town and comune in the province of Palermo, in Sicily, Italy, on the slope of Monte Caputo, overlooking the very fertile valley called "La Conca d'oro" , famed for its orange, olive and almond trees, the produce of which is exported in large quantities...

, Palermo
Palermo
Palermo is a city in Southern Italy, the capital of both the autonomous region of Sicily and the Province of Palermo. The city is noted for its history, culture, architecture and gastronomy, playing an important role throughout much of its existence; it is over 2,700 years old...

, where they still remain. (Sicily was at that time ruled by his younger brother, Charles of Anjou, and the French army returned to France through the Kingdom of Naples and Sicily.) His corpse was taken, after a short stay at the Basilica of Saint Dominic in Bologna
Bologna
Bologna is the capital city of Emilia-Romagna, in the Po Valley of Northern Italy. The city lies between the Po River and the Apennine Mountains, more specifically, between the Reno River and the Savena River. Bologna is a lively and cosmopolitan Italian college city, with spectacular history,...

, to the French royal necropolis at Saint-Denis
Saint Denis Basilica
The Cathedral Basilica of Saint Denis is a large medieval abbey church in the commune of Saint-Denis, now a northern suburb of Paris. The abbey church was created a cathedral in 1966 and is the seat of the Bishop of Saint-Denis, Pascal Michel Ghislain Delannoy...

, resting in Lyon
Lyon
Lyon , is a city in east-central France in the Rhône-Alpes region, situated between Paris and Marseille. Lyon is located at from Paris, from Marseille, from Geneva, from Turin, and from Barcelona. The residents of the city are called Lyonnais....

 on the way. His tomb at Saint-Denis was a magnificent gilt brass monument designed in the late 14th century. It was melted down during the French Wars of Religion
French Wars of Religion
The French Wars of Religion is the name given to a period of civil infighting and military operations, primarily fought between French Catholics and Protestants . The conflict involved the factional disputes between the aristocratic houses of France, such as the House of Bourbon and House of Guise...

, at which time the body of the king disappeared. Only one finger was rescued and is kept at Saint-Denis.

Veneration as a saint


Pope Boniface VIII
Pope Boniface VIII
Pope Boniface VIII , born Benedetto Gaetani, was Pope of the Catholic Church from 1294 to 1303. Today, Boniface VIII is probably best remembered for his feuds with Dante, who placed him in the Eighth circle of Hell in his Divina Commedia, among the Simonists.- Biography :Gaetani was born in 1235 in...

 proclaimed the canonization of Louis in 1297; he is the only French monarch to be declared a saint
Saint
A saint is a holy person. In various religions, saints are people who are believed to have exceptional holiness.In Christian usage, "saint" refers to any believer who is "in Christ", and in whom Christ dwells, whether in heaven or in earth...

.

Louis IX is often considered the model of the ideal Christian monarch. Because of the aura of holiness attached to his memory, many kings of France were called Louis, especially in the Bourbon dynasty, which directly descended from one of his younger sons.

The Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Louis is a Roman Catholic religious order founded in 1842 and named in his honor.

He is also honored as co-patron of the Third Order of St. Francis
Third Order of St. Francis
The Third Order of St. Francis is a third order within the Franciscan movement of the Roman Catholic Church. It includes both congregations of vowed men and women and fraternities of men and women living standard lives in the world, usually married...

, which claims him as a member of the Order.

He is also venerated in the Church of England
Church of England
The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England and the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The church considers itself within the tradition of Western Christianity and dates its formal establishment principally to the mission to England by St...

.

Places named after Saint Louis


The cities of San Luis Potosí
San Luis Potosí
San Luis Potosí officially Estado Libre y Soberano de San Luis Potosí is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 58 municipalities and its capital city is San Luis Potosí....

 in Mexico; St. Louis
St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis is an independent city on the eastern border of Missouri, United States. With a population of 319,294, it was the 58th-largest U.S. city at the 2010 U.S. Census. The Greater St...

, Missouri; St. Louis
St. Louis, Michigan
St. Louis is a city in Gratiot County in the U.S. state of Michigan. As of the 2000 census, the city population was 4,494. The 2010 census estimate places the population at 7,482.-Geography:...

, Michigan; San Luis
San Luis, Arizona
San Luis is a city in Yuma County, Arizona, United States. The population was 15,322 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Yuma Metropolitan Statistical Area. San Luis was the second fastest-growing place among all cities and towns in Arizona of any size from 1990 and 2000...

, Arizona; San Luis
San Luis, Colorado
The Town of San Luis is a statutory town that is the county seat and the most populous town of Costilla County, Colorado, United States. The population was 739 at the 2000 census.-History:...

, Colorado; Saint-Louis du Sénégal; Saint-Louis
Saint-Louis, Haut-Rhin
Saint-Louis is a commune in the Haut-Rhin department in Alsace in north-eastern France.The inhabitants are called Ludoviciens.-Geography:...

 in Alsace; as well as Lake Saint-Louis
Lake Saint-Louis
Lake Saint-Louis, or in French , is a lake in extreme southwestern Quebec, Canada, adjoining the Island of Montreal at the confluence of the Saint Lawrence and Ottawa Rivers.The lake is bounded to the north and east by the Island of Montreal...

 in Quebec, the Mission San Luis Rey de Francia
Mission San Luis Rey de Francia
Mission San Luis Rey de Francia, also known as Mission San Luis Rey or San Luis Rey Mission Church, was founded on June 13, 1798 in coastal Las Californias, in the present day U.S. city of Oceanside in California. The local Quechnajuichom Native American tribe became known as the Luiseño 'Mission...

 in California and rue Saint Louis of Pondicherry are among the many places named after the king and saint.

The Cathedral Saint-Louis in Versailles; the Basilica of St. Louis, King of France
Basilica of St. Louis, King of France
The Basilica of Saint Louis, King of France, formerly the Cathedral of Saint Louis, and colloquially the Old Cathedral, was the first cathedral west of the Mississippi River and until 1845 the only parish church in the city of St. Louis, Missouri. It is one of two Catholic basilicas in St...

 and the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis, both in St. Louis, Missouri; and the St. Louis Cathedral, New Orleans
St. Louis Cathedral, New Orleans
Saint Louis Cathedral , also known as the Basilica of St. Louis, King of France, is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans; it has the distinction of being the oldest continuously operating cathedral in the United States...

 were also named for the king. The French royal Order of Saint Louis
Order of Saint Louis
The Royal and Military Order of Saint Louis was a military Order of Chivalry founded on 5 April 1693 by Louis XIV and named after Saint Louis . It was intended as a reward for exceptional officers, and is notable as the first decoration that could be granted to non-nobles...

 (1693–1790 and 1814–1830), the Île Saint-Louis
Île Saint-Louis
The Île Saint-Louis is one of two natural islands in the Seine river, in Paris, France . The island is named after King Louis IX of France ....

 as well as a hospital in the 10th arrondissement of Paris also bear his name.

Many places in Brazil called São Luís in Portuguese are named after the French Saint Louis.

Port-Louis, the capital city of Mauritius, as well as its cathedral are also named after St. Louis, who is the patron saint of the island.

Famous portraits


A bas-relief of St. Louis is one of the carved portraits of historic lawmakers that adorns the chamber of the United States House of Representatives
United States House of Representatives
The United States House of Representatives is one of the two Houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate.The composition and powers of the House are established in Article One of the Constitution...

.

Saint Louis is also portrayed on a frieze
Frieze
thumb|267px|Frieze of the [[Tower of the Winds]], AthensIn architecture the frieze is the wide central section part of an entablature and may be plain in the Ionic or Doric order, or decorated with bas-reliefs. Even when neither columns nor pilasters are expressed, on an astylar wall it lies upon...

 depicting a timeline of important lawgivers throughout world history in the Courtroom
Courtroom
A courtroom is the actual enclosed space in which a judge regularly holds court.The schedule of official court proceedings is called a docket; the term is also synonymous with a court's caseload as a whole.-Courtroom design:-United States:...

 at the Supreme Court of the United States
Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the United States. It has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all state and federal courts, and original jurisdiction over a small range of cases...

.

A statue of St. Louis by the sculptor John Donoghue stands on the roofline of the New York State Appellate Division Court at 27 Madison Avenue in New York City.

The Apotheosis of St. Louis
Apotheosis of St. Louis
Apotheosis of St. Louis is a statue of King Louis IX of France, namesake of St. Louis, Missouri, located in front of the Saint Louis Art Museum in Forest Park. Prior to the completion of the Gateway Arch, the statue was the principal symbol of the city. It has served in the iconography of St...

 is an equestrian statue of the saint, by Charles Henry Niehaus
Charles Henry Niehaus
Charles Henry Niehaus , was an American sculptor, born in Cincinnati, Ohio.-Education:Niehaus began working as a marble and wood carver and then gained entrance to the McMicken School of Design in Cincinnati and later studied at the Royal Academy in Munich, Germany...

, that stands in front of the Saint Louis Art Museum
Saint Louis Art Museum
The Saint Louis Art Museum is one of the principal U.S. art museums, visited by up to a half million people every year. Admission is free through a subsidy from the cultural tax district for St. Louis City and County.Located in Forest Park in St...

 in Forest Park.

In fiction

  • Davis, William Stearns, "Falaise of the Blessed Voice" aka "The White Queen". New York, NY: Macmillan, 1904
  • Peter Berling
    Peter Berling
    Peter Berling is a German actor and writer. He has worked on several occasions with director Werner Herzog, in his collaborations with actor Klaus Kinski....

    , The Children of the Grail
    The Children of the Grail
    The Children of the Grail is a historical novel published in 1996 and a series based on it written by Peter Berling.*The Children of the Grail...


External links