- Montfort, Simon de
born 1165?died June 25, 1218, Toulouse, FranceFrench leader of the Albigensian Crusade.From 1209 he led a Crusade against the Cathari heretics, and he became governor of the lands he conquered in southern France. The fourth Lateran Council gave him Toulouse (1215), but Raymond VI, count of Toulouse, refused to accept defeat, and Montfort was killed while besieging the city. His eldest son ceded the Montfort lands in southern France to King Louis VIII.IIlater Earl of Leicesterdied Aug. 4, 1265, Evesham, Worcestershire, Eng.The second son of Simon de Montfort, he gave up Montfort lands in France but revived the family claim to the English earldom of Leicester.His marriage to Henry III's sister (1238) offended the barons and led to his temporary exile. Simon distinguished himself on a Crusade to the Holy Land (1240–42) and joined Henry's failed invasion of France (1242). Sent to pacify Gascony (1248), he was censured for his harsh methods there and recalled. He joined the other leading barons in forcing Henry to accept the Provisions of Oxford. When Louis IX annulled the Provisions, Simon defeated and captured Henry (1264) and summoned (1265) what became the beginning of the modern Parliament. He governed England for less than a year before being defeated and killed by Henry's son Edward.
* * *▪ French crusaderborn 1165?died June 25, 1218, Toulouse, Fr.French leader of the Albigensian Crusade declared by Pope Innocent III against the Cathari, an unorthodox religious group in southern France.In 1190 Montfort married Alice de Montmorency (died 1221). During the Fourth Crusade (1202–04) he participated in the siege of Zara and later fought in Syria. Beginning in 1209 he led the fight against the Cathari (better known as Albigenses after the town of Albi) in a crusade that quickly became a war of conquest by the northern French against the nobility of the south. Having conquered Béziers and Carcassonne, he was chosen to govern those lands. When most of the crusaders departed after the 40-day term they had promised to serve, he was left with large territories still to conquer. After he had won the important Battle of Muret in 1213, the lands of Raymond VI, count of Toulouse, were adjudged to Montfort by the fourth Lateran Council (1215) because of Raymond's failure to root out heretics. He now styled himself count of Toulouse, viscount of Béziers and Carcassonne, and duke of Narbonne, but Raymond did not accept defeat. He occupied Toulouse in September 1217. Montfort was killed while besieging the city. His son Amaury (died 1241) soon abandoned the crusade and ceded the Montfort lands in southern France to King Louis VIII.
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