Before he was born, Geoffrey’s father, Fulk V of Anjou, made an agreement with Henry I
of England. The treaty was to be sealed with the marriage of Geoffrey’s sister, Matilda, to Henry’s son and heir, William Aetheling
1119 (24th August)
Geoffrey of Anjou was born to Fulk V of Anjou and Jerusalem and his wife Ermengarde, Countess of Maine.
1120 (25th November)
White Ship Disaster
The heir to the throne of England, William Aetheling, died after the ship he was returning to England in hit rocks and sank just outside Barfleur.
1125 (23rd May)
Henry V of Germany died leaving his wife, Matilda
, daughter of Henry I, a widow.
Henry I of England, keen to renew the treaty with Anjou, proposed a new alliance to be sealed with the marriage of Geoffrey to his daughter and heir, Matilda.
1128 (10th June)
Geoffrey was knighted by King Henry I.
1128 (17th June)
Geoffrey married Matilda, daughter of Henry I, widow of Henry V, Holy Roman Emperor at Le Mans.
Geoffrey became Count of Anjou, Touraine and Maine after his father gave up the title to marry Melisende and become King of Jerusalem.
Geoffrey and Matilda were totally incompatible. He was 11 years younger than her and they had nothing in common. Matilda left Geoffrey and returned to her father, Henry I, at Rouen. Geoffrey demanded Matilda return but she remained with her father.
Geoffrey’s illegitimate son, Hamelin, was born .
Geoffrey’s wife, Matilda went to England with her father.
1131 (8th September)
The English nobility agreed to recognise Matilda as heir to the English throne and swore allegiance.
Geoffrey and his wife, Matilda, were reconciled and she returned to him.
1133 (5th March)
A son, Henry
, was born to Geoffrey and Matilda.
1134 (1st June)
A son, Geoffrey, was born to Geoffrey and Matilda.
1135 (1st December)
King Henry I died. Although the nobles had sworn to accept Matilda as Queen, Matilda’s cousin, Stephen of Blois
, took the throne.
Matilda was unable to sail to England to challenge Stephen because she was pregnant. Geoffrey made raids into Normandy but was unable to take control.
1136 (21st July)
A son, William, was born to Geoffrey and Matilda.
Geoffrey had been attacking areas in the south of Normandy. He had such success that Stephen was forced to cross the Channel to try to defend his land. Unable to defeat Geoffrey, Stephen was forced to make terms.
Matilda’s half-brother, Robert of Gloucester agreed to support Matilda’s claim to the throne.
Robert of Gloucester crossed the Channel to Normandy to help Geoffrey take control of Normandy, but they were unsuccessful. Robert returned to England.
Geoffrey remained in Normandy when Matilda invaded England, landing at Arundel in Sussex.
Matilda, supported by her half-brother, Robert of Gloucester, gained control of south-west England.
1141 (2nd February)
Battle of Lincoln
Matilda’s forces defeated and captured King Stephen. Matilda declared herself Queen of England.
1141 (24th June)
Matilda had hoped to be crowned on this day but the people of London rose up against her and she was forced to flee to Oxford.
1141 (14th September)
Rout of Winchester
Matilda was unable to withstand the siege of Winchester. Although she managed to escape Robert of Gloucester was captured.
Matilda, who could not continue to fight without Robert of Gloucester, agreed to release Stephen in exchange for the release of Robert of Gloucester.
Geoffrey’s eldest son, Henry
, went to England to help his mother Matilda.
Geoffrey succeeded in taking Avranchin and Mortain.
Geoffrey succeeded in taking the Contentin.
1144 (14th January)
Geoffrey succeeded in taking Rouen which gave him control of Normandy. He assumed the title Duke of Normandy.
Geoffrey recalled his son, Henry, to Normandy so that he could learn the administration of Normandy to which he was now heir.
Geoffrey was formally invested as Duke of Normandy.
Geoffrey founded an Augustine priory at Chateau-l’Hermitage in Anjou.
Geoffrey’s brother, Elias, rebelled against Geoffrey’s rule of Anjou, Touraine and Maine. Geoffrey defeated and captured Elias and imprisoned him.
Robert of Gloucester died. This left Matilda unable to continue her fight against Stephen.
Geoffrey’s son, Henry, returned to England with a mercenary force to try to take the throne from Stephen. The mission failed because Henry did not have sufficient funds to pay his men and his mother, Matilda, refused to pay the men for him.
Matilda and Henry returned to Normandy.
Geoffrey passed the title, Duke of Normandy, to his eldest son, Henry.
Geoffrey died of a fever. He was buried in St Julien’s Cathedral.