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Margaret of Burgundy, Queen of France


Margaret of Burgundy, Queen of France

Margaret of Burgundy
Romanticized portrait of Queen Margaret
Queen consort of France
Tenure 1314–1315
Queen consort of Navarre
Tenure 1305–1315
Born c. 1290
Died 14 August 1315 (aged 24–25)
Château Gaillard, Normandy
Spouse Louis X of France
Issue Joan II of Navarre
House House of Burgundy
Father Robert II, Duke of Burgundy
Mother Agnes of France
Religion Roman Catholicism

Margaret of Burgundy (French: Marguerite; 1290 – 14 August 1315) was Queen of France and Navarre as the first wife King Louis X and I.


  • Life 1
  • Legacy 2
  • In fiction 3
  • Ancestry 4
  • References 5


Margaret was a princess of the ducal House of Burgundy, a branch of the Capetian dynasty. She was the eldest daughter of Robert II, Duke of Burgundy (1248–1306) and Agnes of France (1260–1327), the youngest daughter of Louis IX of France and Margaret of Provence.[1]

In 1305, Margaret married her first cousin once removed, Louis I, King of Navarre, who in 1314 acceded to the French throne as Louis X of France.[2] They had one daughter, Joan (born 1312, died 1349).

Early in 1314, before Louis came to the throne, Margaret was allegedly caught in an act of adultery in the Tour de Nesle Affair. Her sister-in-law Isabella of France was a witness against her, and Margaret was imprisoned for the last two years of her life, along with her sister-in-law Blanche of Burgundy. After Louis came to the throne, Margaret was confined at Château Gaillard and after poor treatment caught a cold and died.[3] Therefore, she was imprisoned for the entire time that she was nominally queen of France.

An alternate version of the story states that she did not die at Chateau Gaillard, but escaped and was taken in by her cousin Marie of Couches, and that she died at the chateau of Couches in 1333. The chateau is known locally as the chateau of Margaret of Burgundy.


Margaret's daughter, Joan, later became queen regnant of Navarre as Joan II (1311–1349). Her paternity was under doubt because of her mother's alleged adultery.

In 1361, Margaret's succession rights became important in the premature death of Philip I, Duke of Burgundy (her grandnephew), since the closest Burgundian heirs were descendants of Margaret and of her sister, Joan the Lame. Margaret's grandson and heir Charles II of Navarre claimed the duchy on the basis of primogeniture, but Joan the Lame's son John II of France on the basis of proximity, being one generation closer to the Burgundian dukes. The case was ruled in favour of John, who became Duke of Burgundy, later bestowing the Duchy upon his son, Philip the Bold.

In fiction

Margaret is portrayed in La Roi en fer and La Reine étranglée, two 1955 novels in Maurice Druon's Les Rois maudits (The Accursed Kings) series of historical novels. She was played by Muriel Baptiste in the 1972 French miniseries adaptation of the series, and by Hélène Fillières in the 2005 adaptation.[4][5]



  1. ^ Anne Echols and Marty Williams, An Annotated Index of Medieval Women, (Markus Weiner Publishing Inc., 1992), 300.
  2. ^ Anne Echols, 300.
  3. ^ Jim Bradbury, The Capetians: Kings of France, 987-1328, (Continuum Books, 2007), 277.
  4. ^ (2005 miniseries)"Les Rois maudits"Official website: (in French). 2005. Archived from the original on 15 August 2009. Retrieved 25 July 2015. 
  5. ^ : Casting de la saison 1"Les Rois maudits" (in French).  
French royalty
Preceded by
Blanche of Artois
Queen consort of Navarre
Succeeded by
Clementia of Hungary
Preceded by
Joan I of Navarre
Queen consort of France
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