County of La Marche

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La Marche
Flag of La Marche
Coat of arms of La Marche
Coat of arms
Time zoneCET
Map of France in 1154, showing location of County of La Marche

The County of La Marche (French pronunciation: ​[maʁʃ]; Occitan: la Marcha) was a medieval French county, approximately corresponding to the modern département of Creuse.

La Marche first appeared as a separate fief about the middle of the 10th century, when William III, Duke of Aquitaine, gave it to one of his vassals named Boso, who took the title of count. In the 12th century, the countship passed to the family of Lusignan. They also were sometimes counts of Angoulême and counts of Limousin.

With the death of the childless Count Guy in 1308, his possessions in La Marche were seized by Philip IV of France. In 1316 the king made La Marche an appanage for his youngest son the Prince, afterwards Charles IV. Several years later in 1327, La Marche passed into the hands of the House of Bourbon. The family of Armagnac held it from 1435 to 1477, when it reverted to the Bourbons.

In 1527 La Marche was seized by Francis I and became part of the domains of the French crown. It was divided into Haute Marche and Basse Marche, the estates of the former continuing until the 17th century. From 1470 until the Revolution, the province was under the jurisdiction of the parlement of Paris.

Counts of La Marche[edit]

La Marche dynasty[edit]

  • Boso I le Vieux (the Old), count of La Marche and count of Périgord (958–988)
  • Aldebert I, count of La Marche and Périgord (988–997)
    • Boso II, count of La Marche and Périgord (988–1010)
  • Bernard I (1010–1041)
    • His daughter, Almodis, married firstly with Hugh V of Lusignan, and their son Hugh VI inherited later the county of Marche by her right.
  • Aldebert II (1047–1088), son of Bernard I
  • Boso III (1088–1091), son of Aldebert II
    • Eudes I, son of Bernard I, probably ruled as regent for his nephew Boso III (1088)

Lusignan dynasty[edit]

Capetian dynasty[edit]

Capetian-Bourbon dynasty[edit]

Armagnac dynasty[edit]

Capetian-Bourbon dynasty[edit]

Orleanist pretenders to Count of La Marche[edit]

The title was granted to Thibaut, a younger son of Henri, the Orléanist claimant to the throne of France.

  • Prince Thibaut, Count of La Marche (1948–1983)
  • Prince Robert, Count of La Marche (b. 1976, r. 1983- )

See also[edit]