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Catherine I of Courtenay

Catherine I of Courtenay
Titular Empress of Constantinople
Reign 15 December 1283 – 11 October 1307
Marquise de Namur
Dame de Courtenay, de Montargis, and de Blacon
Spouse Charles of Valois
John, Count of Chartres
Catherine II of Valois, Princess of Achaea
Joan of Valois
Isabella of Valois
House Courtenay
Father Philip of Courtenay
Mother Beatrice of Sicily
Born 25 November 1274
Died 11 October 1307 (aged 32)
Paris, France
Burial Eglise des Jacobins, Paris
Religion Roman Catholic

Catherine I of Courtenay (25 November 1274 – 11 October 1307) was Titular Empress of Constantinople from 1283 to her death in 1307. In 1301, she became the second wife of Charles of Valois, by whom she had one son and three daughters; the eldest of these, Catherine II of Valois, Princess of Achaea succeeded her as titular empress.


She was born on 25 November 1274, the only daughter and heir of the titular Emperor of Constantinople Philip I of Courtenay by Beatrice of Sicily. Her maternal grandparents were King Charles I of Sicily and Beatrice of Provence. The latter was the fourth daughter of Ramon Berenguer IV, Count of Provence and Beatrice of Savoy.

Upon her father's death which occurred on 15 December 1283,[1] Catherine inherited his claims to the Latin throne of Constantinople and was recognized as empress by the Latin states in Greece, despite the city having been re-taken by the Empire of Nicaea in 1261.

Catherine was betrothed three times; however, these betrothals all ended in failure, until finally on 28 February 1301 at the Priory of St. Cloud near Paris, she succeeded in marrying as his second wife, Count Charles of Valois, son of King Philip III of France and Isabella of Aragon. On 23 April 1301, Charles became titular emperor with Catherine until her death in Paris on 11 October 1307 at the age of 32. She was buried at the Eglise des Jacobins[2] the following day, 12 October. Jacques de Molay, Grand Master of the Knights Templar served as one of her pallbearers.


By Charles of Valois, Catherine I had four children:

See also


Catherine of Courtenay
Born: 25 November 1274 Died: 11 October 1307
Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Philip of Courtenay
Latin Empress of Constantinople

with Charles, Count of Valois (1301–1307)
Succeeded by
Catherine of Valois


  • Peter Lock, The Franks in the Aegean 1204–1500, New York, 1995.

External links

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