In a charter dated 6 March 974, Adèle donated her hereditary domains to Saint-Aubin in Angers. Witnesses included, among others, her husband Geoffroy, sons Foulques and Geoffroy, and count Heribert ["Signum Gauzfredi comitis. Signum Fulconis, filii ejus. Signum Gauzfredi, filii ejus. ... Signum Raynardi calumpniatoris. Signum Raynaldi, episcopi Andegavensis. Signum Raynaldi vicecomitis, patris ejus. Signum Sulpitii. Signum Heriberti comitis. Signum Gauzfredi vicecomitis. Signum Harduini, episcopi Turonensis. Signum Odonis comitis, qui hanc donationem fieri jussit." Cart. S.-Aubin, 7-10].
Date of Birth: Unknown.
Place of Birth: Unknown.
Date of Death: Living 6 March 974.
Place of Death: Unknown.
Robert, count of Meaux and Troyes.
Mother: Adélaïde alias Werra, daughter of Giselbert, count of Chalon and Troyes.
For Adèle's parentage, see the Commentary section.
Spouse: Geoffroy I Grisegonelle, d. 987, count of Anjou.
See the page of Geoffroy I for details.
Foulques III Nerra, d. 1040, count of Anjou.
Geoffrey, living 6 March 974.
Ermengarde, d. aft. 992, m. Conan I de Rennes, d. 992.
Gerberge, d. aft. 988, m. Guillaume IV, count of Angoulême.
Falsely attributed father (actually her grandfather): Heribert II, d. 943, count of Vermandois.
The parentage of Adèle
The major medieval source for Adèle's parentage is an eleventh century collection of Angevin genealogies, which includes a genealogical table of Adèle's relatives [Poupardin (1900), 207]. The following figure shows the relationships in this table.
Most of the identifications of individuals in this table are routine. Adela's son Fulco is Foulques Nerra of Anjou, and Leutgardis is clearly Liégard, daughter of Heribert II of Vermandois (the two Guillaumes and Guy [Widdo] being of the family of the counts of Poitou). The one problem with the table is the attachment of a long desceription to the elder Herbertus, which reads "fraudulentissimus qui Karolum regem dolosa et perjura fraude apprehensum in custodia diutius apud Castellum Theoderici detinuit et ad tempus quidem pro inimitia inter se et Radulfum regem relaxavit sed rursus in vincula retrusit." This describes the capture of Charles the Simple, which was a deed of Heribert II, not Heribert I. Although there is clearly an error here, it is not clear whether the author was mistakenly misidentifying the captor of Charles, or mistakenly adding a generation to the chart. The subtle distinction between these two alternatives does not affect the statement of Adèle's parentage. It is clear that the table is making her a daughter of count Robert of Troyes. The witness list of Adèle's donation charter in 974 gives some additional support for this information. The count Heribert who witnessed the charter would be either Heribert II's son Heribert le Vieux, count of Omois, or the latter's nephew Heribert le Jeune, son of count Robert of Meaux and Troyes. What remains is to show that certain objections which have been raised do not suffice to change this picture.
In 1871, when Mabille stated (without proof) that Adèle was a sister of Robert of Troyes and not his daughter, he was evidently unaware of the Saint-Aubin genealogies, which would not be published until 1900 [Mabille (1871), lxx]. When Ferdinand Lot, evidently also unaware of these genealogies, cited Mabille's opinion in 1901, he used the supposed "succession" to the countship of Troyes as a reason for accepting Mabille's hypothesis [Lot (1901), 271]. When Étienne, count of Meaux and Troyes (son of count Heribert le Jeune), died between 1019 and 1023, power in Meaux and Troyes passed to Eudes II of Blois and Chartres, a grandson of Liégard, a daughter of Heribert II. If this were an ordinary example of succession, the suggestion that Adèle was a daughter of Robert would apparently introduce the problem that the Angevins (Adèle's descendants) were "closer" heirs than Eudes in 1019×1023, a problem which would disappear if Adèle were Robert's sister instead.
Against this objection, the following points can be made for accepting the evidence of the Saint-Aubin genealogies as they stand.
mother or sister:
Falsely attributed identification:
Adélaïde, m. (1) Lambert, d. probably 978, count of Chalon; (2) Geoffroy I Grisegonelle, d. 987, count of Anjou.
For an account of the various confusions which have led to these problems, see the page of Adélaïde.
In a variation of the above,
Adèle has also been falsely identified with Adélaïde:
Falsely attributed husband: Lambert, d. probably 978, count of Chalon.
Lambert's widow Adélaïde did marry Geoffroy I Grisegonelle, in a marriage which occurred after Lambert's death. Adélaïde should not be confused with Geoffroy's first wife Adèle, who was already married to Geoffroy by 974. See the page of Adélaïde for more.
Cart. S.-Aubin = Bertrand de Broussillon, Cartulaire de l'abbaye de Saint-Aubin d'Angers, 3 vols. (Angers, 1903).
Lot (1901) = Ferdinand Lot, "Herbert le Jeune et la succession des comtés champenois", Annales de l'Est 15 (1901), 265-283.
Mabille (1871) = Émile Mabille, Introduction au Chroniques des Comtes d'Anjou (Société de l'Histoire de France, vol. 155, Paris, 1871).
Poupardin (1900) = René Poupardin, "Généalogies angevines du XIe siècle", Mélanges d'Archéologie et d'Histoire (Paris, Rome) 20 (1900):199-208.
Compiled by Stewart Baldwin
First uploaded 23 May 2007.
Minor revision uploaded 24 April 2008.
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