Joan I

or Joanna I Italian Giovanna

born 1326
died May 22, 1382, Lucania, Kingdom of Naples

Countess of Provence and queen of Naples (1343–82).

She belonged to the house of Anjou, and her marriage to the brother of the king of Hungary was intended to reconcile Hungarian and Angevin claims on Naples. Suspected of her husband's murder, she fled to Avignon (1348). She sold Avignon to the papacy in return for being cleared of the crime, then went back to Naples in 1352. She recognized the antipope Clement VII in 1378, and Pope Urban VI crowned Charles of Durazzo king of Naples in 1381. When Charles captured Naples, he imprisoned Joan and had her killed.

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▪ queen of France
byname  Joan of Navarre,  French  Jeanne de Navarre 
born Jan. 14, 1273, Bar-sur-Seine, Fr.
died April 2, 1305, Vincennes

      queen consort of Philip IV (the Fair) of France (from 1285) and queen of Navarre (as Joan I, from 1274), mother of three French kings—Louis X, Philip V, and Charles IV.

      Joan was the sole daughter and heir of Henry I, king of Navarre, her brother Theobald (Thibaut) having died at an early age. She married (Aug. 16, 1284) the future Philip IV, thus bringing to the French crown her rights to Navarre and the countships of Champagne and Brie. On her death in childbirth in 1305 these rights were transmitted to her son, the future Louis X. Joan was a woman of great intelligence and vivacity, a lover of arts and letters who founded the famous college of Navarre.

▪ queen of Naples
Joan also spelled  Joanna  
born 1326
died May 22, 1382, Lucania, Kingdom of Naples [Italy]

      countess of Provence and queen of Naples (1343–82) who defended her claim as well as that of the house of Anjou to the throne of Naples, only to lose it to Charles of Durazzo (Charles III of Naples). Beautiful and intelligent, she was also a patron of the poets and scholars of her time.

      Joan I succeeded her grandfather, King Robert, in 1343, after her marriage to her cousin Andrew, brother of Louis I of Hungary (1342–82); her accession was intended to reconcile the Hungarian and Angevin claims on Naples. The swarm of Hungarians who followed Andrew to Naples, however, antagonized many of the Angevins at court, including Joan herself. Consequently, when Andrew was assassinated (Sept. 18, 1345), Joan was accused of having been privy to the crime.

      Joan married Louis of Taranto in 1347 but fled to Avignon, Fr., when Louis I of Hungary invaded Naples in 1348, seeking to avenge Andrew's assassination. During her exile, she sold Avignon to the papacy on condition that she be declared innocent of the assassination. She was able to return to Naples permanently in 1352, thanks to the intervention of Pope Innocent VI.

      After Louis of Taranto's death (1362), Joan married James III, king of Majorca, who, whether fearing for his life or attempting to recover his own kingdom, was almost continuously absent from Naples until his death in 1375. Meanwhile, Joan had consolidated her rule somewhat and had recognized Frederick III as king of Sicily, thereby ending an ancient Sicilian dispute between the Angevins and the Aragonese.

      In 1376 Joan married the military adventurer Otto of Brunswick and later recognized as her heir to the throne Louis, Duke d'Anjou, brother of the French king Charles V. In 1378 she also recognized the antipope Clement VII. Charles of Durazzo (Charles III), whom Joan had previously recognized as her heir, secured the aid of Pope Urban VI, who crowned him king of Naples in Rome (1381). Charles captured Naples in June, declaring himself king. He imprisoned Joan in the castle of Muro, where he had her suffocated.

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Universalium. 2010.

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