Eleanor was born in 1122 to Duke William X of Aquitaine. The holdings of her father were equal to those of the French royalty, making him one of the most influential and important men in the region. She inherited her father s wealth and influence upon his death, and later that year was wed to Louis VII of France. He became King of France a month later, and as his queen, she proved to be a talented advisor. Eleanor accompanied him during the Second Crusade, organizing his policy and advising his political choices. It was during the Crusades that their marriage ended, and despite having produced two daughters, it was annulled by Louis in 1152. His reasoning was that of Blood relationship, but the reality was of course that of jealousy and suspicion.
Eleanor was rumored to be having an intimate affair with a cousin, but whether that was true or not is unknown. What is known is that soon after the end of her marriage to Louis of France, Eleanor became independently wealthy and powerful again. Several months later she married Henry II of England, positioning herself into an even greater position of power in Europe. When Henry was crowned King Of England in 1154, Eleanor became the ruler of England, Normandy and thanks to Henry s holdings and holdings of her own, much of France. It was during this period that she mothered eight children with Henry, including the future Kings Richard... [continues]
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