Blanche of Navarre, Queen of Castile

For other persons of this name, see Blanca of Navarre (disambiguation).
Blanche of Navarre
Spouse(s) Sancho III of Castile
Noble family House of Jiménez
Father García Ramírez of Navarre
Mother Margaret of L'Aigle
Born after 1133
Laguardia, Álava
Died 12 August 1156(1156-08-12)

Blanche of Navarre (aft. 1133, Laguardia, Álava August 12, 1156) was Queen of Castile, the daughter of King García Ramírez of Navarre and his first wife Margaret of L'Aigle.

Blanche married Sancho III of Castile, co-king of Castile (with his father) on January 30, 1151 in Calahorra, Logroño; however, she died before her husband’s accession as sole ruler in 1157. She had at least one son who is buried in the church of San Pedro in Soria. On November 11, 1155 she gave birth to the future king Alfonso VIII. There appears to be no record of her activities thereafter, except for her death on August 12, 1156. While it had been suggested that she might have died from the complications of a new pregnancy, an art historian Elizabeth Valdez del Álamo maintains that she died from sequelae of the birth of her son.[1] That her death was caused by a pregnancy is recorded in an epitaph.

She and Sancho had at least two sons:

There may also have been an older son who died in infancy.

Sancho donated money to the monastery called Santa María la Real of Nájera where Blanche is buried. The sarcophagus of the queen is regarded as a primary example of the ability to express artistically human emotions in the 12th century.



  1. Lament for a lost queen: the sarcophagus of Doña Blanca in Najera, Elizabeth Valdez del Álamo, Memory and the Medieval Tomb, The Art Bulletin, June, 1996.
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