Jean de Beaumanoir
|Spouse(s)||Tiphaine de Chemillé, Marguerite de Rohan|
Jean, or Jehan de Beaumanoir, marshal of Brittany for Charles of Blois, and captain of Josselin, is remembered for his share in the famous Combat of the Thirty during the War of Breton Succession (1341–1364) between the warring parties of competing claimants for the Dukedom.
Jean IV de Beaumanoir was the son of Jean III de Beaumanoir, Lord of Beaumanoir and Merdrignac and Marie de Dinan-Montafilant, known as “Marie du Guildo”, and the nephew of Robert. Jean IV succeeded his father as Lord of Merdrignac. He was also a friend and a comrade in arms of Bertrand du Guesclin, a fellow Breton Knight and Constable of France.
Jean first married Tiphaine de Chemillé, who gave him two sons, who died both childless:
Jean then married Marguerite de Rohan, daughter of Alain VII of Rohan and widow of Olivier V de Clisson. They had three daughters who married into the most prominent breton families of the time:
During the War of the Succession in Brittany (1341-1365), Jean embraces the cause of Charles de Blois against John de Montfort for the ducal crown of Brittany and is one of the heroes who stands out most at the battle of La Roche-Derrien (1347).
Robert Bemborough, the English captain of Ploërmel, who supported the rival claimant John de Montfort, was the nearest enemy leader. In 1351, Beaumanoir sent him a challenge, which resulted in an "emprise" — an arranged chivalric combat — which took place near Ploërmel, between picked combatants.
Beaumanoir commanded thirty Bretons, Bemborough a mixed force of twenty Englishmen (including Sir Robert Knolles and Sir Hugh Calveley), six German mercenaries and four Breton partisans of Montfort. The battle, fought with swords, daggers, spears, and axes, mounted or on foot, was extremely vicious. When de Beaumanoir was badly wounded and asked for water, his fellow combatant Geoffroy du Bois is supposed to have said to him "Drink your blood, Beaumanoir; your thirst will pass" (Bois ton sang, Beaumanoir, la soif te passera).De Beaumanoir's men emerged victorious, and he became an icon of medieval chivalry.
When his faction was eventually defeated at the Battle of Auray in 1364, de Beaumanoir helped to negotiate the Treaty of Guérande, which ended the war, receiving in return the title of Marshal of Brittany.
The Battle of Auray took place on 29 September 1364 at the French town of Auray. This battle was the decisive confrontation of the Breton War of Succession, a part of the Hundred Years' War.
The Combat of the Thirty, occurring on 26 March 1351, was an episode in the Breton War of Succession fought to determine who would rule the Duchy of Brittany. It was an arranged fight between selected combatants from both sides of the conflict, fought at a site midway between the Breton castles of Josselin and Ploërmel among 30 champions, knights, and squires on each side. The challenge was issued by Jean de Beaumanoir, a captain of Charles of Blois supported by King Philip VI of France, to Robert Bemborough, a captain of Jean de Montfort supported by Edward III of England.
John III the Good was Duke of Brittany, from 1312 to his death and 5th Earl of Richmond from 1334 to his death. He was the son of Duke Arthur II of Brittany and Mary of Limoges, his first wife. John was strongly opposed to his father's second marriage to Yolande of Dreux, Queen of Scotland and attempted to contest its legality.
Joan of Penthièvre or Joan the Lame reigned as Duchess of Brittany together with her husband, Charles of Blois, between 1341 and 1364. Her ducal claims were contested by the House of Montfort, which prevailed only after an extensive civil war, the War of the Breton Succession. After the war, Joan remained titular Duchess of Brittany to her death. She was Countess of Penthièvre in her own right throughout her life.
The War of the Breton Succession was a conflict between the Counts of Blois and the Montforts of Brittany for control of the Sovereign Duchy of Brittany, then a fief of the Kingdom of France. It was fought between 1341 and 12 April 1365. It is also known as the War of the Two Jeannes due to the involvement of two queens of that name.
John of Montfort, sometimes known as John IV of Brittany, and 6th Earl of Richmond from 1341 to his death. He was the son of Arthur II, Duke of Brittany and his second wife, Yolande de Dreux. He contested the inheritance of the Duchy of Brittany by his niece, Joan of Penthièvre, which led to the War of the Breton Succession, which in turn evolved into being part of the Hundred Years' War between England and France. John's patron in his quest was King Edward III of England. He died in 1345, 19 years before the end of the war, and the victory of his son John IV over Joan of Penthièvre and her husband, Charles of Blois.
Charles of Blois-Châtillon, nicknamed "the Saint", was the legalist Duke of Brittany from 1341 until his death, via his marriage to Joan, Duchess of Brittany and Countess of Penthièvre, holding the title against the claims of John of Montfort. The cause of his possible canonization was the subject of a good deal of political maneuvering on the part of his cousin, Charles V of France, who endorsed it, and his rival, Montfort, who opposed it. The cause fell dormant after Pope Gregory XI left Avignon in 1376, but was revived in 1894. Charles of Blois was beatified in 1904.
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Sir Robert Bemborough (d.1351) was a medieval knight who led the Montfortist faction during the Combat of the Thirty. This was an arranged battle between thirty knights from both sides during the Breton War of Succession, a struggle for control of the duchy between the House of Montfort and the House of Blois. Bemborough was killed in the battle.
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