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(kəpē`shənz), royal house of France that ruled continuously from 987 to 1328; it takes its name from Hugh CapetHugh Capet
, c.938–996, king of France (987–96), first of the Capetians. He was the son of Hugh the Great, to whose vast territories he succeeded in 956. After the death of Louis V, last Carolingian king of France, the nobles and prelates elected him king, setting
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. Related branches of the family (see ValoisValois
, royal house of France that ruled from 1328 to 1589. At the death of Charles IV, the last of the direct Capetians, the Valois dynasty came to the throne in the person of Philip VI, son of Charles of Valois and grandson of Philip III.
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; BourbonBourbon
, European royal family, originally of France; a cadet branch of the Capetian dynasty. One branch of the Bourbons occupies the modern Spanish throne, and other branches ruled the Two Sicilies and Parma.
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) ruled France until the final deposition of the monarchy in the 19th cent. The first historical ancestor was Robert the StrongRobert the Strong,
d. 866, French warrior, marquess of Neustria; father of the French kings Eudes and Robert I and ancestor of the Capetians. He joined the rebellious nobles against Charles II, Emperor of the West. They invited Louis the German to invade France (858).
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, count of Anjou and of Blois. His son, EudesEudes
or Odo
, c.860–898, count of Paris, French king (888–898). The son of Robert the Strong, he was an antecedent of the Capetian royal house in France.
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, count of Paris, was elected (888) king after the deposition of the Carolingian king Charles III (Charles the Fat). From 893 to 987 the crown passed back and forth between CarolingiansCarolingians
, dynasty of Frankish rulers, founded in the 7th cent. by Pepin of Landen, who, as mayor of the palace, ruled the East Frankish Kingdom of Austrasia for Dagobert I.
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 and descendants of Robert the Strong. Eudes's brother, Robert IRobert I,
c.865–923, French king (922–23), son of Count Robert the Strong and younger brother of King Eudes. He inherited from Eudes the territory between the Seine and the Loire rivers.
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, was chosen king in 922 but died in 923. The title, waived by his son, Hugh the GreatHugh the Great,
d. 956, French duke; son of King Robert I and father of Hugh Capet. Excluded from the succession on his father's death by his brother-in-law Raoul, he supported the candidacy of Louis IV, the Carolingian heir, after Raoul's death (936).
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, passed to Robert's son-in-law, RaoulRaoul
, d. 936, duke of Burgundy, king of France (923–36). Elected king to succeed his father-in-law, Robert I, Raoul fought the Normans and the Hungarians, who repeatedly invaded France.
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, duke of Burgundy. In 987, Hugh's son, Hugh Capet, became king. His direct descendants remained on the throne until the death (1328) of Charles IV, when it passed to the related house of Valois. The successors of Hugh Capet were Robert II, Henry I, Philip I, Louis VI, Louis VII, Philip II, Louis VIII, Louis IX, Philip III, Philip IV, Louis X, John I, Philip V, and Charles IV. Their reign marked the expansion of royal authority, the revival of towns and commerce, and the beginning of the modern French state.


See R. Fawtier, The Capetian Kings of France (1941, tr. 1960); A. Lewis, Royal Succession in Capetian France (1982); R. McKitterick, The Frankish Kingdoms under the Carolingians (1983); J. Dunbabin, France in the Making, 843–1180 (1985).



a dynasty of French kings (from 987 to 1328). The founder of the dynasty was Hugh Capet, who was elected king after the death of the last king of the Carolingian dynasty. Under the Capetians, the monarchy became hereditary rather than elective (this was at first a de facto development but became de jure after the 12th century). The Capetians succeeded in expanding the territory of the royal domain and were able to consolidate three-fourths of the territory of modern France by the beginning of the 14th century. Capetian policies promoted the establishment of a centralized state. After the death of Charles IV, who left no sons, the French crown passed to the Valois dynasty (a branch of the Capetians).

The Capetian dynasty consisted of Hugh Capet (who ruled from 987 to 996), Robert II (996–1031), Henry I (1031–60), Philip I (1060–1108), Louis VI the Fat (1108–37), Louis VII (1137–80), Philip II Augustus (1180–1223), Louis VIII (1223–26), Louix IX (Saint Louis; 1226–70), Philip III the Bold (1270–85), Philip IV the Fair (1285–1314), Louis X (1314–16), Philip V(second son of Philip IV; 1316–22), and Charles IV (third son of Philip IV; 1322–28).


Petit-Dutaillis, C. Feoda’naia monarkhiia vo Frantsii i v Anglii X—XIIII vv Moscow, 1938. (Translated from French.)
Fawtier, R. Les Capétiens et la France. Paris, 1942.
Calmette, J., Le Réveil capétien. [Paris, 1948.]
Bailly, A. Les Grands Capétiens. Paris [1952].
References in periodicals archive ?
They resonate with Saint-Pathus' Vie et miracles de Saint Louis, interweaving history and hagiography, and through patronage and bequest, associate Charles dynastically with the last Capetians through visual references to Jeanne d'Evreux's book of hours.
See William Chester Jordan, The French Monarchy and the Jews: From Philip Augustus to the Last of the Capetians (Philadelphia, 1989), 105-27.
There were over 50 independent baronies in France in the early Capetian period.
The cult also reached beyond the Ile-de-France, as cadet branches of the Capetian line sought to strengthen their connection to the French royal house.
The political power of Capetian kings was not excluded from this masculine, monastic ideal.
David's Adultery with Bathsheba and the Healing Power of the Capetian Kings.
This is an enjoyable book, containing some useful insights into Capetian kingship, but it is also a deeply infuriating one, with more than a hint of jingoistic patrotism to it: Duby may be speaking in the language of the day, but he seems to enjoy and share a vision of Capetian and French power as God-given, and it does not seem coincidence that the only late mediaeval episode he dwells on is the story of the Maid of Orleans.
On Saint-Denis, where eight Carolingian and eight Capetian kings and queens were buried in the second half of the thirteenth century, see Sommers Wright, 224-43.
Agnes's writings, for instance, can be studied within the categories of royal and Capetian sanctity, (9) and the three works can be analyzed in terms of Franciscan (Agnes and Felipa) and Carthusian (Marguerite) spirituality.
The success of a ruling dynasty depended upon the production and survival of legitimate (preferably male) heirs, as the Capetian experience demonstrated.
Paxton demonstrates that Fleury's contemporary hagiographical and biographical texts depict Abbots Abbo (988-1004) and Gauzlin (1005-30) countering the political weakness of the first two Capetian monarchs Hugh (987-996) and Robert (996-1031) by reversing the positions of king and abbot: the kings gained the stature of religious leaders while the abbots "as worldly leaders exercis[ed] power on their own authority and on their own terms" (199).
9"; and "Non legitur in historia Francorum: Stephen of Tournai, the Last Merovingians, and the Capetian Dynasty.