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Encyclopedia > Comte de Provence

The now-extinct title of Count of Provence belonged to local families of Frankish origin, to the House of Barcelona, to the House of Anjou and to a cadet branch of the House of Valois. From 1032 to 1246 the county was part of the Holy Roman Empire, and a fief of the French Crown from 1246. It was definitely incorporated into the French royal domain in 1481.


Early Kings, Dukes, Marquesses and Counts of Provence

The first known rulers of Provence, some of whom may have styled themselves Kings or Dukes or Marquesses of Provence, descend from Rotbold or Roubaud (between 949 and 965) and his son Boson of Arles (b. 928 - d. 965/7), of a noble Frankish family which constituted the so called First House of Burgundy. Count Boson of Arles received Provence in 947. Upon his death his two sons, Guilhem I the Liberator (b. 950, d. 994) and Rotbold (Roubaud) II (b. 961, d. 1008) succeeded him without dividing his dominions. This indivisibility was maintained by their respective descendants. It is thus impossible to ascertain who succeeded whom in the County as various reigns overlap.

Descendants of Rotbold (or Roubaud) II and of Guilhem (or William or Guillaume) I as Counts of Provence include:

  • 961-1008 - Rotbold (or Roubaud) III, son of Rotbold II
  • 994-1018 - Guilhem (or William or Guillaume) II, son of Guilhem I
  • 1014-1024 or 1037 - Guilhem (or William or Guillaume) IV of Arles, son of Rotbold III
  • 1018-1030 - Guilhem (or William or Guillaume) III, son of Guilhem II
  • 1018-1051 - Foulques (or Folch) Bertrand, son of Guilhem II
  • 1032-1062 - Geoffroi I, son of Guilhem II
  • 1051-1094 - Guilhem Betrand I or Betrand II, son of Foulques Bertrand
  • 1063-1067? - Geoffroi II, son of Geoffroi I
  • 1094-1118 - Gerberge, daughter of Foulques Bertrand
  •  ??? Adela´de of Provence, daughter of Guilhem Betrand I
  • 1063-1093 - Bertrand II, son of Geoffroi I
  • 1093-1112 - Gerberge of Provence, daughter of Geoffroi I

Gerberge died in 1112, passing the county to her daughter Douce, whose husband, Ramon Berenguer III, Count of Barcelona thus became Ramon Berenguer I of Provence.

Counts of Provence of the House of Barcelona

Ramon Berenguer IV left no male heirs, so he left the counties of Provence and Forcalquier to his fourth daughter, Beatrice, and her husband, Charles d'Anjou


  1. To accommodate claims of the count of Toulouse in 1125 Provence was divided along the Durance. Lands north of the river constituted the marquessate of Provence, ruled by Toulouse, and south of the river was the county proper, ruled by the House of Barcelona.
  2. The County of Forcalquier was incorporated into the domains of Alfonso II upon his marriage with Gersande de Forcalquier (1193)

Angevin Counts of Provence-Forcalquier, Kings of Naples

Queen Joan died heirless, leaving the county to Louis I of Anjou, son of King John II of France the Good, of the House of Valois

Counts of Provence and Forcalquier, Dukes of Anjou and (nominal) Kings of Sicily, of the Valois-Anjou dynasty

  • 1382-1384 Louis I of Anjou, Count and then Duke of Anjou (1351), Duke of Calabria and Count of Maine (1356), Duke of Touraine (1370), nominal King of Sicily (1382)
  • 1384-1417 Louis II of Anjou, Duke of Anjou, Calabria and Touraine, Count of Maine, nominal King of Sicily (1384), Count of Guise (1404), son of Louis I
  • 1417-1434 Louis III of Anjou, Duke of Anjou and Touraine, nominal King of Sicily (1417), Duke of Calabria (1424), son of Louis II
  • 1434-1480 Rene I of Naples the Good, Count of Guise (1417-1422), Duke of Lorraine and Bar (1431), King of Naples and (nominal) Sicily and Jerusalem (1434-1442), Duke of Anjou and Touraine (1434), King of Aragon and Count of Barcelona (in dispute, 1466-1472), son of Louis II
  • 1480-1481 Charles III (V of Maine), a.k.a. Charles of Maine, Count of Maine and Guise (1472), nephew of Rene I

Upon his death the heirless Charles du Maine bequests the counties of Provence-Forcalquier to King Louis XI of France. From this point, the title of Count of Provence becomes simply one of the many hereditary titles of the French monarchy.

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