Siddhesh Joshi

Helena Angelina Doukaina

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Mother  Theodora Petraliphaina
Name  Helena Doukaina
House  Despotate of Epirus

Helena Angelina Doukaina
Issue  Beatrice, Marchioness of Saluzzo Frederick of Sicily Henry of Sicily Enzio of Sicily Flordelis of Sicily
Father  Michael II Komnenos Doukas
Died  March 14, 1271, Nocera Inferiore, Italy
Spouse  Manfred, King of Sicily (m. 1259)
Children  Enzio of Sicily, Beatrix of Sicily, Henry of Sicily, Frederick of Sicily, Flordelis of Sicily
Parents  Theodora of Arta, Michael II Komnenos Doukas
Similar People  Manfred - King of Sicily, Frederick II - Holy Roman E, Bianca Lancia, Beatrice of Savoy

Helena Angelina Doukaina (c. 1242 – 1271) was Queen of Sicily as the second wife of King Manfred. Queen Helena was the daughter of Michael II Komnenos Doukas, Despot of Epirus, and Theodora Petraliphaina. Her marriage was an expression of the alliance of her father and the ruler of Sicily against the growing power of the Empire of Nicaea.


Helena Angelina Doukaina Helena Angelina Doukaina c 1242 1271 Polyvore


Helena Angelina Doukaina Helena Angelina Doukaina c 1242 1271 Polyvore

She was married to Manfred of Sicily 2 June 1259, after the death of his first wife Beatrice of Savoy in 1257 and his own rise to the throne on 10 August 1258. D. J. Geanakoplos notes that this marriage was surprising, considering Manfred's father Frederick II had been in an alliance with John III Vatatzes, the late ruler of the Empire of Nicaea, but "one must consider that conquest of the Byzantine Empire had been a traditional Norman aim for almost a century, and that Manfred was now in a strong enough position in Italy to discard his father's alliance and to look to those who could assist him in his ambitions for Balkan domination." Few details of how this marriage was arranged have come down to us. "It would be of interest," Geanakoplos observes, "to know who took the initiative to promote the marriage alliance; whether Manfred's marriage preceded that of William of Achaea to Anna, another daughter of Michael II; and, most important, whether Manfred's Epirote possessions were secured from Michael II actually as a result of conquest or as a dowry."

Manfred had captured Dyrrhachium and its surrounding area within the following two years. Michael II still had a territorial claim at the city but at the time was preparing to besiege Thessalonica. Helena's dowry included all rights to Dyrrhachium and its surrounding area along with the island of Corfu. Corfu was the only clear territorial gain for Manfred.


Manfred was killed at the Battle of Benevento on 26 February 1266 while fighting against his rival and successor Charles I of Sicily. Charles captured Helena and imprisoned her. She lived five years later in captivity into the castle of Nocera Inferiore where she died in 1271.


Helena and Manfred had five children:

  • Beatrice of Sicily (c. 1258 – before 1307); imprisoned in Castel dell'Ovo until released, later married, firstly, Rainer Gherardesca, and secondly Manfred IV of Saluzzo.
  • Frederick of Sicily (c. 1259 – last mentioned alive in 1312), blinded and imprisoned in Castel del Monte.
  • Henry of Sicily (May 1262 – 31 October 1318), blinded and imprisoned in Castel del Monte.
  • Enzio of Sicily (c. 1261 – c. 1301), blinded and imprisoned in Castel del Monte.
  • Flordelis of Sicily (c. 1266 – last mentioned alive in 1297), imprisoned in Castel dell'Ovo until released.
  • References

    Helena Angelina Doukaina Wikipedia

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