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[Fr.,=of Anjou], name of two medieval dynasties originating in France. The first ruled over parts of France and over Jerusalem and England; the second ruled over parts of France and over Naples, Hungary, and Poland, with a claim to Jerusalem.
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(also Angevin), the English royal house that ruled from 1154 to 1399. Its founder was Henry II, count of Anjou. The dynastic name was derived from the nickname of Henry IPs father, Count Geoffrey le Bel of Anjou, who decorated his helmet with a sprig of broom (Latin planta genista). Henry II and his immediate successors ruled over a domain that included, besides England, extensive territories in France. However, the dynasty lost most of its French lands at the beginning of the 13th century.
The Plantagenet rulers included Henry II (1154–89), Richard I, Coeur de Lion (1189–99), John Lackland (1199–1216), Henry III (1216–72), Edward I (1272–1307), Edward II (1307–27), Edward III (1327–77), and Richard II (1377–99). After the overthrow of Richard II, the throne was occupied by the Lancastrian (1399–1461) and Yorkist (1461–85) collateral branches of the Plantagenet family.