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RAMON Berenguer I, Count of Barcelona

HUSBAND:
RAMON Berenguer I, Count of Barcelona. el Vell ("the Old") was Count of Barcelona in 1035-1076
He promulgated the earliest versions of a written code of Catalan law, the Usages of Barcelona.

Born in 1024, son of Berenguer Ramon I, The Crooked. He succeeded his father, Berenguer Ramon the Crooked in 1035. It is during his reign that the dominant position of Barcelona among other Catalan counties became evident.

Ramon Berenguer campaigned against the Moors, extending his dominions as far west as Barbastro and imposing heavy tributes (parias) on other Moorish cities. Historians claim that those tributes helped create the first wave of prosperity in Catalan history. During his reign Catalan maritime power started to be felt in Western Mediterranean. Ramon Berenguer the Old was also the first count of Catalonia to acquire lands (counties of Carcassonne and Razés) and influence north of the Pyrenees.

Another major achievement of his was beginning of codification of Catalan law in the written Usatges or Usatici of Barcelona which was to become the first full compilation of feudal law in Western Europe. Legal codification was part of the count's efforts to forward and somehow control the process of feudalization which started during the reign of his weak father, Berenger Ramon. Another major contributor was the Church acting through the institution of the Peace and Truce of God. This established a general truce among warring factions and lords in a given region for a given time. The earliest extant date for introducing the Truce of God in Western Europe is 1027 in Catalonia, during the reign of Ramon Berenguer the Old.

Ramon Berenguer I together with his third wife Almodis also founded the Romanesque cathedral of Barcelona, to replace the older basilica presumably destroyed by Almanzor. Their velvet and brass bound wooden coffins are still shown in the Gothic cathedral which replaced Ramon Berenguer's building.

He was succeeded by his twin sons Ramon Berenguer II and Berenguer Ramon II. It has been speculated that the obscure wife of Henry of Burgundy, the grandmother of Alfonso Henriques, first king of Portugal, was his sister.

WIFE (1):
Isabel (or Elisabeth) of Narbonne or of Béziers


CHILDREN of RAMON Berenguer I, Count of Barcelona
  1. Berenguer (died young)
  2. Arnau (died young)
  3. Pere Ramon (1050-1073?). Murdered his father's wife, Almodis, and was exiled


WIFE (2):
Blanca.
(origin unknown).

CHILDREN of RAMON Berenguer I, Count of Barcelona
  1. ?


WIFE (3):
Almodis de La Marche, countess of Limoges.
Almodis de la Marche (c. 1020 – 16 October 1071) was the daughter of Bernard I, Count of Marche. She married (1) Hugh V of Lusignan around 1038 and they had one son:
* Hugh VI of Lusignan (c. 1039-1101)

Almodis and Hugh of Lusignan divorced due to consanguinity, and Hugh arranged for her to marry (2) Count Pons of Toulouse in 1040. Together they produced several children, including:
* William IV of Toulouse
* Raymond IV of Toulouse
* Hugues of Toulouse (died young)
* Almodis of Toulouse, married Count Pierre of Melgueil

She was still Pons' wife in April 1053, but shortly thereafter Almodis was abducted by Ramon Berenguer I, Count of Barcelona. He kidnapped her from Narbonne with the aid of a fleet sent north by his ally, the Muslim emir of Tortosa. They married immediately (despite the fact both of her previous husbands were still alive) and they appear with their twin sons in a charter the next year. Pope Victor II excommunicated Almodis and Ramon for this illegal marriage until 1056. Together they produced four children.

Almodis maintained contact with her former husbands and many children, and in 1066/1067 she traveled to Toulouse for her daughter's wedding. A few years before, in 1060, Hugh V of Lusignan had revolted against his lord, Duke William VIII of Aquitaine, in support of Almodis' son William IV of Toulouse. Her sons supported one another in military campaigns; Hugh VI of Lusignan, Raymond IV of Toulouse, and Berenguer Ramon all took the Cross.

Her third husband Ramon had a son from a previous marriage, Pedro Ramon, who was his heir. Pedro apparently resented Almodis' influence and was concerned she was trying to replace him with her own two sons. He murdered her in October 1071. Pedro was disinherited and exiled for his crime, and fled the country. When his father died in 1076, Barcelona was split between Berenguer Ramon and Ramon Berenguer, Almodis' sons. The family history of murder did not end with Pedro Ramon, as Berenguer Ramon earned his nickname "The Fratricide" when he killed his own twin brother.

CHILDREN of RAMON Berenguer I, Count of Barcelona
  1. Berenguer Ramon II, Count of Barcelona the Fratricide (1053/54-1097)
  2. RAMON Berenguer II, Count of Barcelona. The Towhead (1053/54-1082).
  3. Inés. married Hugh d'Albo
  4. Sancha. married Guilhem Ramon, count of Cerdanya


SOURCES:

HOW ARE WE RELATED:
Ramon Brrnguer I, Count of Barcelona (1023-1076) md Almodis  de La Marche, countess of Limoges.
Ramon Berenguer II, Count of Barcelona (c1053-1082) and Maud of Apulia
Ramon Berenguer III (1082-)  Md Douce I, Countess of Provence, (c1090-c1127) 
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Ramon Berenguer IV, Count of Barcelona (c1114-1162),                                        Berenguela, 
    md Petronilla of Aragon.                                                                                       Md Alfonso VII, King of Spain
                                                                                                                                             (see separately)
Alfonso II, King of Aragon. (1157-1196).  md Sancha of Castile.  
Alfonso II, Count of Provence. (1174-1209)  Md Gersenda II of Sabran. 
Ramon Berenguer IV, Count of Provence.  (1198-1245). Md Beatrice of Savoy
Eleanor of Provence (c1223-1298) and Henry III, King of England (1207-1272)
    ___________________|_____________________________
    |                                                                                                         |                                   
Edward I, King of England  (1239-1307)     Edmund, Crouchback (1244-1296)  
and Eleanor of Castile                                                and Blanche de Artois   
                                                                                     (see separately)         

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    |                                                             |                                                                                  |
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  and Isabella of France             and Gilbert de Clare                                         and Humphrey de Bohun
                                                       (see separately)                                                 (see separately)

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