Arnulf I Count of “The Great” Flanders

Arnulf I Count of “The Great” Flanders

Death 28 Mar 965 (aged 74–75)
Burial Ghent, Arrondissement Gent, East Flanders (Oost-Vlaanderen), Belgium
Memorial ID 61435379 View Source

Arnulf the Great or Arnoul I "The Old" Count of Flanders, 3rd Count of Flanders

Arnulf was the son of Baudouin / Baldwin II and Ælfthryth of Wessex, and the grandson of Baudouin I and Judith of France (daughter of Charles the Bald), Alfred the Great and Ealhswith of Gaini. He was named after his distant ancestor, Saint Arnulf of Metz in order to affirm his descent from Charlemagne and the Carolingian dynasty.

Arnulf married an unknown woman and had at least one daughter who married Isaac of Cambrai, and her son succeeded his father as Arnulf, Count of Cambrai. Hildegarde, listed below, may have been from this marriage.

He married a second time to Adele de Vermandois, the daughter of Herbert II and Hildebrante, the daughter of Robert I de Morvais, the King of the West Franks. They were married in 934 and had the following children:

* Hildegarde, married Dirk II, Count of Holland
* Liutgard, married Wichmann IV, Count of Hamaland
* Egbert, died 953
* Baldwin III of Flanders, married Mathilde of Saxony, daughter of Hermann Billung
* Elftrude, married Siegfried, Count of Guînes

Arnulf became Count of Flanders at his father's death in 918, while his younger brother, Adeloft, became the Count of Boulgone. Adeloft died in 933, wherein Arnulf took control but passed it along to his brother's son, Arnulf II. Arnulf ruled the County of Flanders, an area that is now northwestern Belgium and southwestern Holland. He expanded his territory to the south, including parts of Artois, Ponthieu, Amiens, and Ostravent. He actively used the conflicts between Charles the Simple and Robert I of France, and later the quarrels between Louis IV and his barons to further his own ambitions and wealth.

Arnulf's conflicts in the south with the Normans trying to maintain their borders led to the ambush and murder of William Longspee, the son of Rollo Rognavaldsson, by Arnulf's men during a peace conference between William and Louis IV of France.

After the wars ceased, Arnulf would concentrate of reform of the government. His son, Baldwin III died before his father, and his grandson, Baldwin III, became the new Count.

Bio by Anne Shurtleff Stevens

Please note the parent links have not been done formally as there has been no certifiable record of their burials.