Philip II
Philip II
King of France
Reign 1st August, 1137 - 17th June, 1148
Predecessor Louis VI
Successor Robert III
Born 1116
Died 17th June, 1148
Spouse Matilda of Champagne
Issue Adele

Robert III

House Capet
Father Louis VI
Mother Adélaide of Maurienne

Philip II ruled over France for eight years in the mid-12th century before leaving his kingdom to go on crusade.

The eldest son of Louis VI, he was crowned co-king in 1129, however was apparently a severe disappointment to the elder king. Arrogant, disobedient and refusing to listen to warnings or admonishments, in the words of his chroniclers 'made himself a burden to all'. The nobles had little expectation of him yet when his father died in 1137 and he took the full reins of power he did not send the kingdom off the course Louis VI had set. Indeed he was praised by his previously critical chroniclers that he showed admirable thoughtful qualities, even if he did prefer the company of 'rowdy young lords' rather than some of his more elderly advisors.

He would also considerably improve relations with Anglia, calling Cnut III his 'Flemish Rock', indeed they had a common enemy in the Dukes of Normandy. Philip had however loftier ambitions; he had long-harboured the desire to go on pilgrimage to Jerusalem. This would slowly gather pace and seizing on the fall of Edessa a Second Crusade was announced. Philip eagerly signed up. His young son Robert was crowned co-king and he set off for the Holy Land.

This adventure would effectively ruin France for a generation as Robert would fall under the influence of Philip's brother Louis who alienated the nobility with his clear grasping of power. Robert himself would die in 1147 and with Louis in disgrace and other brothers in the church it left the French nobles little option but to crown his elder sister Adele co-ruler in his place. Adele would succeed in her own right when news reached France that Philip had died at the Siege of Damascus. Civil war would soon follow.

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