Mathilde of Bourbon

Mathilde of Bourbon
Spouse(s) Gaucher IV of Vienne
Guy II of Dampierre
Noble family House of Bourbon
Father Archambault of Bourbon
Mother Alix of Burgundy
Born c.1165/69
Died 18 June 1228(1228-06-18)

Mathilde of Bourbon (French: Mahaut de Bourbon; c.1165/69[1] 18 June 1228) was a French noblewoman. She was the ruling Lady of Bourbon from 1171 until her death.[2]


Matilda was the only child of Archambault of Bourbon and his wife Alix (or Adelaide) of Burgundy. She was born in the second half of the 1160s.

Her father, the heir apparent of Bourbon, died in 1169, without ever inheriting the lordship. Her grandfather, Archambault VII, died in 1171. Mathilde, as his only surviving grandchild, succeeded him.

Before 1183, she married Gaucher IV of Vienne, Lord of Salins.[1] After he returned from the Third Crusade, they frequently quarreled. In the end, he became violent and had her locked up.[3]:p. 117 She fled to her grandmother's estate in Champagne[3]:p. 217 During her escape, she allegedly also used violence,[3]:p. 117 and for this she was excommunicated by Archbishop Henri de Sully of Bourges.[4] After she arrived in Champagne, she asked Pope Celestine III for a divorce from her husband, arguing that Gaucher IV and she were close relatives and that the marriage therefore had been inadmissible. The Pope tasked the bishops of Autun and Troyes and the abbot of Monthiers-en-Argonne with investigating her claim. These men found that Mathilde and her husband were third cousins, as they were both great-great-grandchildren of William II, Count of Burgundy, and that, therefore, her claim that they were too closely related was justified. The pope granted the divorce,[5] and also lifted the excommunication.

In September 1196,[6] only a few months after her divorce, she married Lord Guy II of Dampierre. Thus, the Bourbonnais fell to the House of Dampierre. This marriage lasted 20 years: he died in 1216.

Mathilde died twelve years after her husband. After her death, Margaret, her daughter from her first marriage claimed the Lordship of Bourbon. Guy II had initially recognized Margaret as heir of Bourbon, however, he later claimed the Lordship for his oldest son, Archambault VIII. In the end, Archambault prevailed.

Marriages and issue

Her first husband was Gaucher IV of Vienne, Lord of Salins. Together, they had one daughter:

Her second husband was Guy II of Dampierre. With him, she had seven children:[1]



  1. 1 2 3 Theodore Evergates, The Aristocracy in the County of Champagne, 1100-1300, (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007), 217.
  2. House of Bourbon, in: Lexikon des Mittelalters, vol. 2, Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, Munich, 2002, ISBN 3-423-59057-2, column 501
  3. 1 2 3 T. Evergates: The aristocracy in the county of Champagne, 1100-1300
  4. Volkert Pfaff: Das kirchliche Eherecht am Ende des zwölften Jahrhunderts, in: Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung für Rechtsgeschichte. Kanonistische Abteilung, vol. 63, Böhlau, Weimar, 1977, p. 99
  5. Luc d'Achery: Spicilegium immersive Collectio veterum aliquot scriptorium in qui Galliae bibliothecis delituerant, vol. 3, new edition, Paris, 1723, pp. 557-558, (Online)
  6. Etienne Pattou: Première Maison de Bourbon (Bourbon ancien), 2006, p. 3 (PDF, 435 kB)
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