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Á
lands controlled by the Penthievre family, settled on these estates. The
other contingent lacked the unity of the Richmond tenants. These
were Bretons from the north-east of the duchy who received grants of
land in the midlands, the south-west and the Welsh Marches, mainly
from Henry I.
It is self-evident that these Bretons, who were so involved in Anglo-
Norman and Angevin society through landholding and marriage,
cannot have been monolingual in Breton or in any way insular in their
culture and politics. It is surely signi®cant that in establishing the caput
of his honour near Gilling (North Yorks.), Alan Rufus gave it the
Romance name of Richmond, rather than a name derived from
Brittany or the Breton language.
In addition to their participation in the Norman conquest of
England, Bretons joined in the other contemporary Frankish movement
of the First Crusade. A Breton contingent, led by Duke Alan IV, fought
alongside the Normans.41 One source (albeit probably a partisan one)
accords Alan IV a prominent role, describing him as the ®rst lay
magnate to take the cross at Clermont in 1095, and as leading the
Frankish delegation to meet the emperor at Byzantium.42 In joining the
®rst crusade, Bretons shared an experience common to other contem-
porary French nobles and knights. After 1099, Bretons continued to
make pilgrimages, armed and unarmed, to Jerusalem.43
As to coinage, Brittany followed the pattern common to western
Francia following the breakdown of Carolingian royal authority. The
royal prerogative of minting coins devolved to the level of the dukes
but no further. The only coins minted in Brittany other than at ducal
Á
mints were those of the lords of Penthievre, a cadet branch of the ducal

M. Jones, `Les Bretons et les croisades', MSHAB 71 (1994) 367±80; J. Riley-Smith, The ®rst
41

crusaders, 1095±1131, Cambridge, 1997, Appendix 1.
Academie des Inscriptiens et Belles-Lettres, `Li estoire de Jerusalem et d'Antioche', Recueil des
42

historiens des croisades: Historiens occidentaux, 5 vols., v, Academie des Inscriptions et Belles-
Lettres, Paris, 1844±95, p. 625±37.
Preuves, cols. 588, 603, 622, 647, 672.
43


12
Introduction
dynasty which did not acknowledge ducal authority. Breton coinage
was consistent with that of neighbouring regions in terms of its design
and value.44
There is some evidence for the circulation of `foreign' coinage in
Brittany before the mid-twelfth century. A coin-hoard from the 1080s
deposited at Bain is predominantly composed of Breton ducal coinage,
but also contains some coins minted by the counts of Anjou and one
specimen of French royal coinage minted at Mantes. There is more
evidence for Breton coins circulating outside Brittany in this period,
mainly in Normandy. Among these are specimens of the coinage of
Á Á
Penthievre, minted at Guingamp by Stephen, lord of Penthievre
45
(1098±c. 1136), if not before. Deniers of Guingamp were common
currency within the continental domains of the Angevin empire. As
such, they were included in an Angevin royal ordonnance on exchange
rates, which indicates that deniers of Guingamp were of approximately
the same value as those of Angers and Tours.46
On the subject of the integration of Brittany into the Frankish world,
one cannot overestimate the role of the church. All nine dioceses of
Brittany were within the ecclesiastical province of Tours, which,
through provincial councils and archiepiscopal acts, ensured a degree of
co-ordination between the Breton dioceses and the other, Frankish,
dioceses of the province (Tours, Angers and Le Mans).
The dispute with Tours over the claims of the archbishop of Dol to
metropolitan status, pursued from the mid-eleventh century and
throughout the twelfth, is deceptive because it suggests that the Breton
church had a national identity and that it sought independence from the
`French' archbishop of Tours.47 Not all of the dioceses of Brittany
recognised Dol's metropolitan status, however. In fact the dukes do not
seem to have supported Dol, and the dioceses which were in comital/
ducal hands (Rennes, Nantes, Vannes and Cornouaille) were not
suffragans of Dol in this period. From 1122 until its ®nal demise in
1199, the archbishopric of Dol in fact had only two suffragans, the

bishops of Saint-Brieuc and Treguier, with the remaining six dioceses of
Brittany accepting the supremacy of Tours. The dioceses of Saint-


F. Poey d'Avant, Monnaies feodales de France, 3 vols., Paris, 1858, i, pp. 38±9.
44

‚ ‚ ‚‚ ‚
J. Duplessy, Les tresors monetaires medievaux et modernes decouverts en France, i, 751±1223, Paris 1985,
45

no. 30 (Bain) and, outside Brittany, nos. 138, 220, 223, and 239; A. Bigot, Essai sur les monnaies

du royaume et duche de Bretagne, Paris 1857, pp. 65±73.
Bigot, Monnaies de Bretagne, p. 354.
46


For accounts of this con¯ict, see G. Conklin, `Les Capetiens et l'affaire de Dol de Bretagne
47

‚glise de France 78 (1992) 241±63; P. de Fougerolles, `Pope
1179±1199', Revue d'histoire de l'e
Gregory VII, the Archbishopric of Dol and the Normans', Anglo-Norman Studies 21 (1999 for
1998), 47±66. See below, pp. 69±75.

13
Brittany and the Angevins
‚ Á
Brieuc and Treguier were controlled by the lords of Penthievre, who,
throughout the period of the Dol dispute, maintained a policy of
independence from the dukes of Brittany. The decision of their bishops
to support the archbishop of Dol, contrary to ducal policy, was a
Á
manifestation of their dependence upon the lords of Penthievre.
Gregorian reform was at ®rst stubbornly resisted in Brittany, where
the counts and other magnates treated the bishoprics within their
territories as family property.48 By the twelfth century, though, the
reform movement began to take effect. Bishops from outside Brittany
were appointed, such as the Angevin Marbod, bishop of Rennes
(1093±1123), and Baldric of Bourgeuil, archbishop of Dol (1107±30).
Native Breton bishops shared the education and values of their brother
bishops, no doubt due to the fact that the Breton clergy moved freely
between Brittany and Francia. Peter Abelard, for instance, was born at
Le Pallet in the county of Nantes. After the downfall of his scholastic
career, Abelard was elected abbot of the ancient Breton abbey of Saint-
Gildas de Rhuys. Bernard de Moelan was chancellor of the cathedral of
È
Chartres before returning to his native Cornouaille as bishop of
Quimper (1159±67). Bernard d'Escoublac was a monk at Clairvaux
before becoming bishop of Nantes (c. 1148±70). Josce, bishop of Saint-
Brieuc (1150±1157), became archbishop of Tours (1157±74). William
the Breton was educated at Mantes, returned to his native diocese of

Saint-Pol de Leon, then entered the service of Philip Augustus. Breton
clerics enjoyed a high reputation as scholars. 49
As to the regular clergy, no Breton monastery survived unscathed the
Viking attacks of the early tenth century. All the Breton monasteries of
the eleventh century were, therefore, refounded, or were new founda-
tions, initially with monks from outside Brittany. Similarly, at this time
many smaller monasteries were founded or refounded as priories directly
dependent upon these `foreign' abbeys.50
From the turn of the twelfth century, Brittany was at the forefront in
the growth of the new religious orders. Initially, the forests which
formed the marches of Brittany, Normandy and Maine attracted
hermits and ascetic communities. The abbey of Savigny was founded
Á Á
there under the patronage of the lords of Fougeres. Ralph I de Fougeres
also offered property to Bernard, the founder of Tiron, but apparently

‚ Ã Á
Chedeville and Tonnerre, Bretagne feodale, pp. 239±54; L. Maµtre, `Le situation du diocese de
48

Á Ã
Nantes au XIe et au XIIe siecles', AB 26 (1910±11), 489±518; G. Devailly, `Une enquete en
‚ ‚
cours: L'application de la reforme gregorienne en Bretagne', AB 75 (1968), 293±316.
R. L. Poole, `The masters of the schools at Paris and Chartres in John of Salisbury's time',
49

English Historical Review 139 (1920), 321±42 at 338±42.


Chedeville and Tonnerre, Bretagne feodale, pp. 223±9; R. Grand, L'art roman en Bretagne, Paris,
50

1958; D. Andrejewski (ed.), Les abbayes bretonnes, Paris, 1982.

14
Introduction
there was not room in the forest for both holy men, and Bernard and
his followers moved on.51 Robert of Arbrissel, the founder of
Fontevraud, originated in this area. One of his followers, Ralph de la
Ã
Fustaye, founded the abbey of Saint-Sulpice-la-Foret, north-east of
52
Rennes, modelled on Fontevraud. The Cistercian order enjoyed
early and rapid success, under the patronage of both the ducal family
and the lords of Penthievre.53 The Angevin Ermengard, especially as
Á
dowager-duchess, seems to have played an important role in religious
reform in Brittany. She was in correspondence not only with Marbod,
Ã
the reformist bishop of Rennes, but also Gerard of Angouleme,
Robert of Arbrissel, Bernard of Clairvaux and Geoffrey of Vendome.54
Ã
All were, no doubt, eager to bene®t from Ermengard's patronage and
her in¯uence with her son, Duke Conan III, to implement their
reforming ideals in the duchy. Apart from liturgies containing some
obscure Celtic saints,55 by the mid-twelfth century there was nothing
to distinguish the church in Brittany from that of the neighbouring
provinces.
Finally, as an example of integration, I would cite the seignorial

family of Leon. While most of the evidence of relationships between
the Breton aristocracy and that of neighbouring provinces derives from

the eastern parts of Brittany, the case of the lords of Leon, from the
extreme north-west, proves that geographical situation was not a

conclusive factor. The populace of the barony of Leon was culturally
Breton and spoke the Breton language. The lords themselves con-
tinued to use Breton personal names.56 In the eleventh and twelfth

centuries, institutions of Carolingian origin were present in Leon. The

lords of Leon themselves seem to have been descendants of the
Carolingian vicecomes of that pagus, who usurped the public authority
of their of®ce. Their baronial administration had Carolingian aspects

`Gaufridus Grossus, monachus Tironiensis, Vita Beati Bernardi', in J.-P. Migne (ed.), Patrologi±
51

cursus completus . . . series latin±, clxxii, Paris, 1854, cols. 1363±1446, at 1404±5.
‚‚
Ã
H. Guillotel, `Les premiers temps de l'abbaye de Saint-Sulpice-la-Foret', Bulletins de la Societe
52

‚ologie de Bretagne (1971±1974), 60±2.
d'Histoire et d'Arche
Du®ef, Cisterciens, pp. 81±8.
53

PL, 171, cols. 1659±60; PL, 172, cols. 1324±5; PL, 157, cols. 205±6; B. S. James (ed. and
54

trans.), The letters of St Bernard of Clairvaux, London, 1753, nos. 119 and 120; J. de Petigny,
Á
‚ Á
`Lettre inedite de Robert d'Arbrissel a la comtesse Ermengarde', Bibliotheque de l'Ecole des
Chartes, 3rd ser., 5 (1854), 225±35. I am very grateful to Elisabeth Bos for these references.
Duine, Inventaire liturgique, passim.
55

The lords were named Guihomar or Herveus. While the latter is usually the Latin version of the
56


Frankish Herve, in this case it may be for the Breton name `Hoarvei' (or variants thereof ). A
Breton saint of this name was particularly associated with the north-west of Brittany (Duine,

Inventaire liturgique, pp. 52, 60, 214, 217, and 229). See also A.-Y. Bourges, `Guillaume le Breton
Á
et l'hagiographie bretonne aux XIIe-XIIIe siecles', AB 102 (1995), 35±45 at 43.

15
Brittany and the Angevins
and they employed typically Frankish household of®cers such as a
seneschal.57

In terms of external relations, the lords of Leon seem to have
followed a policy of splendid isolation. Effectively independent of the
dukes of Brittany, they eschewed participation in the Norman conquest

of England, and Harvey de Leon was said to have declined an invitation
to the court of Henry I. Making it very clear that he did so only of his
own free will, he later crossed to England in support of King Stephen.58
Stephen rewarded Harvey with marriage to his illegitimate daughter
and endowed him with the earldom of Wiltshire and the honour of
Eye, around 1139. Harvey showed his interest in the long-term future
of his English estates in his attempt to make Eye priory an abbey, ending
its dependence on the Norman abbey of Bernay.59 If a lord of Leon was

involved to this extent with Anglo-Norman affairs, it is safe to say that
no part of Brittany was isolated from the currents of English and French
politics and culture.
Angevin rule did not introduce completely new and alien institutions
into Breton society. It is misconceived to attempt to understand

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