King Richard I marries Berengaria of Navarre 1191

walwyn Sun, 05/27/2012 - 23:01
Sunday, May 12, 1191

On the 12th of May 1191 King Richard I of England married, in the Chapel of St George Limassol on Cyprus, Berengaria of Navarre daughter of Sancho VI of Navarre.1


Richard's fleet had been dispersed by a storm after leaving Sicily, some ships had been wrecked on the coast of Cyprus, and the survivors taken prisoner by the island's ruler Isaac of Komnenos. When Richard arrived Isaac refused to release of the prisoners, and Richard invaded the island.2


Richard had for the previous 20 years been engaged to be married to Alice the sister of Philip II of France, but had decided to marry the 21yo Berengaria of Navarre. This he tried to keep secret from Philip, but Philip subsequently found out the Berengaria was travelling from Naples to meet them with Richard's mother Eleanor of Aquitaine. When Philip confronted Richard about this Richard declared that he wouldn't marry Alice as she had been his father's mistress.3


It was this quarrel that set the two kings against each other, ultimately led to Philip's early departure from the Crusade, and Richard's imprisonment by Duke Leopold V of Austria.