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Arthur III, Duke of Brittany

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Arthur III (in Breton Arzhur III) (24 August 1393 – 26 December 1458), known as the Justicier and as Arthur de Richemont, was Lord of Parthenay and titular Count (Earl) of Richmond in England and for eleven months at the very end of his life, Duke of Brittany and Count of Montfort after inheriting those titles upon the death of his nephew.


Belonging to the family of Montfort, he was a younger son of Duke John V and his third wife Joanna of Navarre. Just a year before his own death, Arthur succeeded his nephew Peter II as Duke. Arthur was also titular Earl of Richmond; the earldom had often been granted to the Dukes of Brittany, but after the death of Arthur's father, the English refused to recognize his heirs as earls. Nevertheless, they continued to style themselves "Count of Richmond", while the English title was given to John, Duke of Bedford, Plantagenet (1389-1435) in 1414.

Arthur was an important figure at the French court even before becoming Duke of Brittany. He was one of the supporters of the charismatic Joan of Arc. Arthur was known for his tenacity and bad temper, characteristics that led to his expulsion from the court in 1427. By 1435, however, he had regained influence, enabling him to orchestrate the Treaty of Arras between Charles VII of France and Philip III, Duke of Burgundy.

Arthur sided with the Armagnac faction against the Burgundians during the civil conflict in France between 1410 and 1414. He fought at the Battle of Agincourt on October 25, 1415, where he was wounded and captured. He was released by the English in 1420 and helped persuade his brother, Duke John, to sign the Treaty of Troyes. In 1422, the English created him Duke of Touraine. However, he subsequently returned to the allegiance of the Dauphin in 1424, was made Constable of France with support from Yolande of Aragon in 1425 and fought alongside Joan of Arc during her victory at the Battle of Patay on June 18, 1429. He then helped arrange the Treaty of Arras (1435), which cemented the peace between France and Burgundy leading to the eventual defeat of the English. He was commander of the French army at the Battle of Formigny on April 15, 1450, the next-to-the-last battle of the Hundred Years' War that sealed the reconquest of Normandy.


Arthur was married three times, but had no legitimate children although he had a natural daughter named Jacqueline who was legitimatized in 1443. He was succeeded as Duke of Brittany by his nephew Francis II, count of Étampes.

His wives were as follows:

  1. married in Dijon on 10 October, 1423 Marguerite of Burgundy (d. 1441), daughter of John the Fearless, Duke of Burgundy and widow of Dauphin Louis, Duke of Guyenne.
  2. married in Nérac ca. 29 August, 1442 Jeanne d'Albret (d. 1444), daughter of Charles II, Count of Dreux
  3. married on July 2, 1445 Catherine of Saint Pol (d. 1492), daughter of Peter I, comte de St-Pol


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This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at Arthur III, Duke of Brittany. The list of authors can be seen in the page history.

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