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Your Guide to Malta and Gozo - The Angevins

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The Angevins

 

Conrad, King of Germany

Conrad, Frederick II's son by Yolanda of Brienne was made King of Germany, whilst his half brother Manfred was proclaimed Prince of Taranto. He was also appointed Conrad's representative in Italian territory. Innocent IV was determined to destroy the Hohenstaufen in Italy, in order to achieve this, he tried to convince the Kings of England and France to take over Sicily. Manfred ascended the Sicilian throne in 1258.

Pope Urban IV was highly perturbed when news of the upcoming marriage between Peter — son of James of Aragon and Constance — daughter of Manfred, reached him. The Pope promised Louis IX of France that his brother, Charles of Anjou would be made king of Sicily if he were to successfully topple the Hohenstaufen there. Louis however was uninterested, so Urban suggested to Henry III of England that Richard, Earl of Cornwall would be handed the Sicilian crown if the English drove the Hohenstaufen out of Sicily. In 1266, Charles invaded Sicily and the French Pontiff Clement IV crowned him King.

Conrad Capece attempted to reconquer Sicily from Tunisia for the Hohenstaufens, and asked the Pisans for military help. In return, the Pisans would have been given Malta. The Hohenstaufens however lost the battle and Malta came under Angevin rule. Charles appointed Bertrand de Reali to run Malta and in 1273, a Maltese by the name of Roberto Kaforio was appointed administrator and treasurer in order to assist de Reali.  

Angevin Rule was abruptly terminated in the War of the Sicilian Vespers. On March 30th 1282 at the Church of the Holy Spirit in Palermo, Drouet, a French officer is said to have sexually harassed a young married woman. Her enraged husband killed him and this sparked off a violent confrontation between the French and the locals. The French were massacred. Peter of Aragon and his wife Constance took over Sicily. The Angevins in Malta were ousted in June, 1283. 1287 saw a failed Angevin attempt to recapture Malta.