William IV, Count of Jülich

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William IV, Count of Jülich (c. 1210 – 16 March 1278) was the son and heir of William III of Jülich and Mathilde of Limburg, daughter of Waleran III, Duke of Limburg. [1]

William was Count of Jülich from 1207 to 1219. He was a nephew of the previous Count, William II. He married Mathilde, daughter of Waleran III, Duke of Limburg. He died in 1219 during the Fifth Crusade in Egypt, and was succeeded by his son William IV.

Duchy of Limburg duchy in Western Europe between 1065-1795

The Duchy of Limburg or Limbourg was a state of the Holy Roman Empire. Its main territory including the capital Limbourg is today located within the Belgian province of Liège, with a small part in the neighbouring province of Belgian Limburg, within the east of Voeren.

Waleran III, Duke of Limburg Duke of Limburg and Count of Arlon

Waleran III was initially lord of Montjoie, then count of Luxembourg from 1214. He became count of Arlon and duke of Limburg on his father's death in 1221. He was the son of Henry III of Limburg and Sophia of Saarbrücken.


William's father joined the Crusades in 1217 and died in the Siege of Damietta in 1218. William succeeded his father as Count of Jülich under the guardianship of his uncle, Eberhard of Hengenbach. In the 1220s and early 1230s William greatly expanded his territory. In 1234 he fought in the battle of Altenesch against the Stedingers and was made imperial administrator of Konzen and Aachen, guardian of Kornelimünster and over the possessions of Essen Abbey on the left bank of the Rhine river. He also won the imperial fiefdoms of Sinzig, Hengenbach-Heimbach, Merzenich, Thürnich, Düren and Bardenberg, thus doubling the possessions of the Counts of Jülich.

Crusades Military campaigns of Western Christians in the Middle Ages against Muslims and others

The Crusades were a series of religious wars sanctioned by the Latin Church in the medieval period. The most commonly known Crusades are the campaigns in the Eastern Mediterranean aimed at recovering the Holy Land from Muslim rule, but the term "Crusades" is also applied to other church-sanctioned campaigns. These were fought for a variety of reasons including the suppression of paganism and heresy, the resolution of conflict among rival Roman Catholic groups, or for political and territorial advantage. At the time of the early Crusades the word did not exist, only becoming the leading descriptive term around 1760.


Stedingen is an area north of Bremen in the delta of the Weser river in north-western Germany.

Konzen is the surname of the following people:

By 1240 William's territorial expansion created conflict on the eastern side of his territory with the Archbishop of Cologne. William was a loyal supporter of the House of Hohenstaufen which made him a rugged opponent of Cologne Archbishop Konrad von Hochstaden, under whose rule more disputes with William broke out. As a result of the Hochstander inheritance, William gained parts of Münstereifel, which moved him even closer to his opponent. In 1242 in the battle of Lövenich, William captured Konrad and forced him to renew all of William's Cologne fiefs. In 1262 William and Engelbert I, Count of the Mark, came to the assistance of the Teutonic Knights during the Siege of Königsberg. In the battle of Zülpich in 1267, William captured Engelbert II of Falkenburg, Archbishop of Cologne, and held him captive in the castle of Nideggen until 1270/71, again forcing the Archbishop to recognize all of William's Cologne fiefs. As a result of this action, William was excommunicated by Pope Clement IV from 1268 to 1270.

Konrad von Hochstaden was Archbishop of Cologne from 1238 to 1261.

Engelbert I, Count of the Mark was a German nobleman. He was the ruling Count of the Mark from 1249 until his death.

Siege of Königsberg

The Siege of Königsberg was a siege laid upon Königsberg Castle, one of the main strongholds of the Teutonic Knights, by Prussians during the Great Prussian Uprising from 1262 possibly though 1265.

William supported Richard of Cornwall as King of the Romans and Richard confirmed all of William's imperial fiefs. William also supported the Kingdom of France against King Alfonso X of Castile in 1267/77. He stood against Guelders, Cleves and Heinsberg because of their similar interests.

King of the Romans title used by medieval German monarchs (for the monarch of the ancient Roman kingdom, use Q55375123)

King of the Romans was a title used by Syagrius, then by the German king following his election by the princes from the time of Emperor Henry II (1014–1024) onward. The title was predominantly a claim to become Holy Roman Emperor and was dependent upon coronation by the Pope.

Kingdom of France kingdom in Western Europe from 843 to 1791

The Kingdom of France was a medieval and early modern monarchy in Western Europe. It was one of the most powerful states in Europe and a great power since the Late Middle Ages and the Hundred Years' War. It was also an early colonial power, with possessions around the world.

Alfonso X of Castile King of Castile

Alfonso X, called the Wise, was the King of Castile, León and Galicia from 30 May 1252 until his death in 1284. During the election of 1257, a dissident faction chose him to be Roman-German king on 1 April. He renounced his claim to Germany in 1275, and in creating an alliance with England in 1254, his claim on Gascony as well.

On the night of 16 March 1278, which has become known as Gertrudisnacht [2] (Night of St. Gertrude), William, along with his sons William and Roland (and according to some sources, a third son), entered the town of Aachen to collect taxes for King Rudolph I of Germany. There was a riot and William and his sons were killed. The city of Aachen was later ordered to pay a high compensation to William's widow Richardis on account of his murder.

Family and children

By contract on 12 March 1237, William was betrothed to Margaret of Guelders, daughter of Gerard III, Count of Guelders and Margaret of Brabant. Most sources accept Margaret as the mother of William's elder children but there is no evidence that this marriage was ever consummated. Further, William is known to have married Margaret's sister, Richardis of Guelders (c. 1215 – 1293/98), prior to January 1250 but there is no evidence of a papal dispensation which would have been required for William to marry the sister of his first wife. Thus, it's possible that Richardis was the mother of all of William's children. William had eleven children, as well as a natural son Roland (and possibly a second natural son) who died with him in the riot at Aachen.

Gerard III, Count of Guelders Dutch noble

Gerard III of Guelders was the Count of Guelders and Zutphen from 1207 until his death in 1229. He was a son of Count Otto I of Guelders, and is sometimes called Gerard IV or Gerard V. He married Margaretha of Brabant, the daughter of Duke Hendrik I of Brabant, in 1206.

  1. Matilda (c. 1238 – bef. 1279), married 1258 John, Count of Looz
  2. Margaret (c. 1240 – 12 October 1292/93), married 1261 Dieter III, Count of Katzenelnbogen
  3. William (c. 1240 – 16 March 1278), died with his father in the riot at Aachen. Married Marie of Flanders, daughter of Guy, Count of Flanders and Matilda of Bethune. They had one son, William the younger.
  4. Richardis (c. 1243 – after 1291), married before 1265 William, Count of Salm
  5. Walram (1240/45 – 1297)
  6. Otto (c. 1245 – after 1283), Archdeacon at Liege from 1282
  7. Gerhard (before 1250 – 1328)
  8. Catharine (c. 1250 – after 1287), married before 1273 John of Arberg
  9. Petronilla (c. 1255 – after 1300), married before 1276 Ludwig, Count of Arnsberg
  10. Blancheflor (c. 1255 – after 1330), married before 1277 Henry, Count of Sponheim
  11. Mechtild (c. 1255 – aft. 1287)

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Margaret of Cleves, also spelled Margaretha or Margarethe was the wife of Count Adolf II of the Marck and mother of Adolf III of the Marck. She was a daughter of Count Dietrich VIII of Cleves and Margaret of Guelders, who was a daughter of Reginald I of Guelders.


  1. Walther Möller, Stammtafeln westdeutscher Adelsgeschlechter im Mittelalter (Darmstadt, 1922, reprint Verlag Degener & Co., 1995), Vol. 1, page 14.
  2. Wikipedia.de
Preceded by
William III
Count of Jülich
Succeeded by