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Montfort, Simon de(mŏnt`fərt, Fr. môNfôr`), c.1160–1218, count of Montfort and earl of Leicester. A participant in the Fourth Crusade (1202–4), he did not join in the sack of Constantinople, but instead proceeded to Syria. He later led the crusade against the AlbigensesAlbigenses
[Lat.,=people of Albi, one of their centers], religious sect of S France in the Middle Ages. Beliefs and Practices
Officially known as heretics, they were actually Cathari, Provençal adherents of a doctrine similar to the Manichaean dualistic
..... Click the link for more information. . Capable, ambitious, and fanatically religious, he commanded the Crusaders who remained in S France after the taking (1209) of Carcassone and, with papal approval, was elected viscount of Béziers and of Carcassone by the armies. In 1211 he attacked the remaining territories of Raymond VIRaymond VI,
1156–1222, count of Toulouse (c.1194–1222). His tolerant attitude toward the Albigenses resulted in his repeated excommunication, although he temporarily made peace with the church in 1209.
..... Click the link for more information. of Toulouse and overran all but Toulouse and Montauban. Pope Innocent III attempted to make him recognize Peter IIPeter II,
1174–1213, king of Aragón (1196–1213) and count of Barcelona, son and successor of Alfonso II. He had himself crowned (1204) at Rome by Pope Innocent III, whom he accepted as overlord of Aragón and Catalonia.
..... Click the link for more information. of Aragón as overlord, but in 1213 Simon defeated Peter and Raymond at Muret. He was proclaimed lord of Toulouse and Montauban by the Crusaders (1215), and his title was confirmed by the pope at the Lateran Council. Raymond recaptured (1217) some of his territories, and Simon renewed the warfare; he was killed while besieging Toulouse. Through his mother he claimed the English earldom of Leicester, to which his right was intermittently recognized by King John. His son was Simon de Montfort, the leader of the English barons.
Montfort, Simon de
Earl of Leicester. Born circa 1208 in Montfort, He de France; died Aug. 4, 1265, in Evesham. English political figure, one of the leaders of the baronial opposition to King Henry III.
De Montfort was among the authors of the Provisions of Oxford (1258), which sharply curtailed royal authority in favor of the barons. He contributed to the issuance of the Provisions of Westminster in 1259 and to the introduction of other measures that took into account the interests of the lesser knights and urban dwellers.
After civil war broke out in 1263, De Montfort and his supporters gained a victory over royal forces at Lewes on May 14, 1264. Becoming de facto dictator, or lord protector, of England, he summoned the first parliament in January 1265, thus laying the foundation for representation according to social estate in England. De Montfort’s forces were defeated by royal troops at Evesham, where he was killed in battle.