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Beatrice of Burgundy (1143 - November 15, 1184) Beatrice was the only daughter of Renaud III, Count of Burgundy and Agatha of Lorraine. She was the second wife and Empress of Frederick I, Holy Roman Emperor. Her maternal grandparents were Simon I, Duke of Lorraine and his wife Adelaide of Leuven. Beatrice was active at the Hohenstaufen court, encouraging literary works and chivalric ideals. She accompanied her husband on his travels and campaigns across his kingdom, and Frederick Barbarossa was known to be under Beatrice's influence.

The poem Carmen de gestis Frederici I imperatoris in Lombardia, written about 1162, describes Beatrice upon her wedding day:

"Venus did not have this virgin's beauty,
Minerva did not have her brilliant mind
And Juno did not have her wealth.
There never was another except God's mother Mary
And Beatrice is so happy she excels her."

Marriage and issue

Beatrice and Frederick were married June 9, 1156 at Würzburgmarker. By this marriage Frederick obtained control of the vast county of Burgundy.

They had the following:

  1. Sophie (b. 1161 - d. 1187), married to Margrave William VI of Montferrat.
  2. Beatrice (b. 1162 - d. 1174). She was betrothed to King William II of Sicily but died before they could be married.
  3. Frederick V, Duke of Swabia (b. Pavia, 16 July 1164 - d. 28 November 1170).
  4. Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor (b. Nijmegen, November 1165 - d. Messina, 28 September 1197).
  5. Conrad (b. Modigliana, February 1167 - d. Acre, 20 January 1191), later renamed Frederick VI, Duke of Swabia after the death of his older brother.
  6. Daughter (Gisela?) (b. October/November 1168 - d. 1184).
  7. Otto I, Count of Burgundy (b. June/July 1170 - killed, Besançon, 13 January 1200).
  8. Conrad II, Duke of Swabia and Rothenburg (b. February/Marc 1172 - killed, Durlach, 15 August 1196).
  9. Renaud (b. October/November 1173 - d. in infancy).
  10. William (b. June/July 1176 - d. in infancy).
  11. Philip of Swabia (b. August 1177- killed, Bamberg, 21 June 1208) King of Germany in 1198.
  12. Agnes (b. 1181 - d. 8 October 1184). She was betrothed to King Emeric of Hungary but died before they could be married.

In Literature

Beatrice is a character in Umberto Eco's novel Baudolino.


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