Wednesday, October 31, 2012

[October 31] John VIII, emperor of Constantinople

Local Name: Iōannēs (Ίωάννης Η' Παλαιολόγος)
Parents: Manuel II, emperor of Constantinople, and Helena of Serbia
Born: 18 December 1392
House: Palaeologos
Spouse(s): (1) Anna, daughter of Basil I, grand prince of Moscow, and Sophia of Lithuania, then (2) Sophia, daughter of Theodore II, marquess of Montferrat, and Joanna of Bar, then (3) Mara, daughter of Alexios IV, emperor of Trebizond, and Theodora Kantakouzene
Predecessor: Manuel II
Reign: 1425 – 1448
Brief: John became co-emperor with his father around the age of twenty-four. By the time he was thirty, he was in charge of the defenses of Constantinople as the city was besieged by Ottoman Sultan Murad II. In the hope that he could secure the protection of the city, he travelled to Italy and agreed to the union of the Orthodox and Catholic churches. While away, his father died and he became the sole ruler of Constantinople. John returned to Italy for the Council of Florence in 1439, but the proposed union of the churches failed due to opposition by the patriarchate of Constantinople. By good diplomacy with the Ottomans, John managed to save his city from complete conquest, but that would be achieved during the reign of his brother, Constantine XI, who had served as regent during John's travels and succeeded the emperor in 1448.
Date of Death: 31 October 1448
Successor: Constantine XI

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Cosimo III, grand duke of Tuscany (1723)
  • Victor Amadeus II, duke of Savoy (1732)
  • Eberhard IV Ludwig, duke of Württemberg (1733)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

[October 30] Frederick I, king of Württemberg

Parents: Frederick II Eugene, duke of Württemberg, and Sophia Dorothea of Brandenburg-Schwedt
Born: 6 November 1754
House: Württemberg
Spouse(s): (1) Augusta, daughter of Charles William Ferdinand, duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, and Augusta of Great Britain, then (2) Charlotte, daughter of George III, king of Great Britain, and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
Predecessor: Frederick II Eugene
Reign: 1805 – 1816
Brief: A towering and wide figure at nearly seven feet with girth to match, it is no surprise that Frederick of Württemberg rose to such greatness through the Napoleonic Wars. Prior to his coronation, Frederick served as the governor-general of Eastern Finland for Empress Catherine the Great of Russia. In 1786, Frederick was booted out of Russia after his wife, Augusta, sought asylum from her abusive husband. In the year of his elevation to the duchy of Württemberg, Frederick married again, this time to the daughter of the king of Great Britain. French troops soon after occupied most of Württemberg and the royal family was forced to flee to Vienna. While there, Napoléon proclaimed him elector of Württemberg and granted the duke new ecclesiastical territories as well as former free cities that were within his realm. Two years later, in 1805, Württemberg was proclaimed a kingdom after Frederick loaned troops to Napoléon's army. For eight years, Frederick supported the French in the wars, but in 1813, he changed sides and joined the Allies. He was confirmed as king at the Congress of Vienna and, after much debate, was allowed to keep all of his annexed lands. Frederick died the following year and his son, William, succeeded him.
Date of Death: 30 October 1816
Successor: William I

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Charles IX, king of Sweden (1611)
  • Go-Komyo, emperor of Japan (1654)

Monday, October 29, 2012

[October 29] Gustaf V, king of Sweden

Parents: Oscar II, king of Sweden, and Sofia of Nassau
Born: 16 June 1858
House: Bernadotte
Spouse(s): Victoria, daughter of Frederick I, grand duke of Baden, and Louise of Prussia
Predecessor: Oscar II
Reign: 1907 – 1950
Brief: Acting as king of Sweden through two world wars was a tough job for Gustav V. Born to a dynasty that had just become a constitutional monarchy prior to his ascension, Gustav was somewhat disappointed by his limited powers and used whatever he could to wield control over Sweden. In 1911, a liberal government was elected but Gustav meddled and the entirety of the government resigned in 1914, allowing Gustav to install a new government of his own. This government served against the wishes of Parliament throughout World War I, during which time Gustav V served as commander of the armed forces. In 1914, the king also met with the kings of Norway and Denmark to negotiate a triple alliance that denied participation in the war and emphasized Scandinavian unity. In 1917, a new liberal government was installed and Gustav reluctantly reclused himself from further governance. In the build-up to World War II, Gustav appeared to many as a Nazi sympathizer. During the war, he congratulated Hitler on attacking Russia even while suggesting that the Jews be treated more leniently. In 1941, Sweden was forced to allow German troops through Swedish territory to avoid war, a move that marred Gustav's legacy thereafter. Gustav did not appear publicly much after the war and died of complications related to the flu in 1950 at the age of 92.
Date of Death: 29 October 1950
Successor: Gustav VI Adolf

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Boleslaw III, duke of Poland (1138)
  • Conradin, duke of Swabia (1268)
  • Frederick I, margrave of Baden (1268)
  • Stephen II, king of Serbia (1321)
  • Mohammadu Maccido, sultan of Sokoto (2006)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

[October 28] Anna, empress of Russia

Local Name: Anna Ioannovna (Анна Иоанновна)
Parents: Ivan V, tsar of Russia, and Praskovia Saltykova
Born: 7 February 1693
House: Romanov
Spouse(s): Frederick William, duke of Courland, son of Frederick Casimir Kettler and Elisabeth Sophie of Brandeburg
Predecessor: Peter II
Reign: 1730 – 1740
Brief: Anna lived a somewhat tragic life. She married the duke of Courland at the age of seventeen only for the man to die three months later on the return trip home. She took over the government of Courland thereafter, remaining unwed the rest of her life. When Emperor Peter II died in 1730, Anna, who was the emperor's niece, was proclaimed his successor. The hoped that by installing her as empress, the nobles could regain some of their lost powers and establish a constitutional monarchy. Anna, in response, indebted herself to the Russian military and lesser nobility and ruled as an autocrat as those before her had. She went power hungry almost immediately, publicly insulting anyone who would mock her or get in her way. She even forced a noble to wed an elderly common woman in a ceremony that involved a zoo's worth of animals and an ice palace, just to insult the man. She replaced many court functionaries with Baltic Germans, and she secured an alliance with Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI, committing Russia to the War of the Polish Succession in 1735. Anna also began attacking targets east and south of Russia in a bit to expand the state. She became ill in 1739 and proclaimed her grand-nephew, who was one-year-old at the time, her heir. Soon after Anna died the next year, Elizabeth, the daughter of Peter the Great, deposed little Ivan VI and took the throne.
Date of Death: 28 October 1740
Successor: Ivan VI

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Maxentius, emperor of Rome (312)
  • Margaret I, queen of Denmark (1412)
  • Ashikaga Yoshihide, shogun of Japan (1568)
  • Jahangir, emperor of India (1627)

Saturday, October 27, 2012

[October 27] Vytautas, grand duke of Lithuania

Local Name: Witold Kiejstutowicz
Surnamed: "The Great"
Parents: Kestutis, grand duke of Lithuania, and Birute
Born: circa 1350
House: Kestutis
Spouse(s): (1) Anna of Smolensk, and after a second unknown wife, (3) Juliana, daughter of Ivan Olshanski
Reign: 1392 – 1430
Brief: Vytautas enters history as a general supporting his father, Kestutis, during the Lithuanian Civil War. Kestutis died soon after this early mention, and Vytautas escaped to the Teutonic Knights in Estonia where he found the support he needed. Vytautas was baptized and fought against the Lithuanian grand duke Jogaila with the support of the Knights. In 1384, he switched sides and joined Jogaila, burning Teutonic castles and reclaiming Lithuanian land. The Union of Kreva was soon signed with Poland in 1385, uniting the two states under one monarch, with Vytautas becoming the king of Poland. Things quickly fell apart and the aspiring grand duke fled back to the Teutonic Knights to renegotiate an alliance. Again, in 1391, Vytautas abandoned the Knights and burned castles as he returned to Lithuania to serve as grand duke under King Jogaila (now named Wladyslaw II Jagiello). From this point forward, Vytautas remained faithful to Lithuania, fighting against the Timurids on behalf of the Golden Horde in the hope of reclaiming lands long ago taken by the Horde. He then joined a crusade against the Mongols which resulted in various territorial swaps and some political problems, but pushed the Mongols back. After he returned, Vytautas began a new war with the Teutonic Knights, burning castles and conquering large pieces of land. By the end of the war in 1411, the Teutonic Knights were little more than a political entity in the north, no longer a threat to anyone. For the remainder of his reign, Vytautas worked with Poland to consolidate rule and leadership, agreeing to unify the two countries on his death and earning the title "king" from the Holy Roman Emperor, though he was never formally invested with the crown. The grand duke died before a second crown arrived in 1430. 
Date of Death: 27 October 1430
Successor: Svitrigaila

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Æthelstan, king of England (939)
  • Hugh IV, duke of Burgundy (1271)
  • John II, duke of Brabant (1312)
  • Albert II, Holy Roman Emperor (1439)
  • Ulugh Beg, shah of Samarkand (1449)
  • Ivan III, grand prince of Moscow (1505)
  • Jellaldin Mohammed Akbar, emperor of India (1605)

Friday, October 26, 2012

[October 26] Ælfred, king of Wessex

Surnamed: "The Great"
Parents: Æthelwulf, king of Wessex, and Osburh
Born: 849
House: Wessex
Spouse(s): Ealhswith, daughter of Æthelred, ealdorman of the Gaini, and Eadburh of Mercia
Reign: 871 – 899
Brief: Prior to his coronation, Alfred travelled with his father throughout Europe. As the fourth son, it was unlikely that he would ever rule. Each brother succeeded the prior in turn, with Alfred rising to prominence during the reign of Æthelred I. He was in charge of the Wessex military and fought against the Danes in up to ten battles in 870-871, the last at Merton causing the death of Æthelred and the ascension of Alfred to the kingship. The Danes settled around York while Alfred consolidated his rule. In 876, the Danes invaded the interior of England and Alfred was put on the defensive, losing all of his allies to the Viking threat. He fought back starting in 787 by raising an army and attacking Danish strongholds throughout England. Alfred won the battle and forced the conversion of the Danes to Christianity and may have delineated the borders between the two kingdoms around 880. A long peace ensued during which time Alfred reoccupied the former capital of London and began to rebuild the city. Anglo-Saxon kingdoms throughout England submitted to Alfred's authority during this time. Alfred reformed the legal system, the economy, and the status of religion within Wessex and his dependencies. Danish attacks increased in the early 890s but Alfred was prepared this time. He fought them off at every turn and died in 899, probably from Crohn's disease.
Date of Death: 26 October 899
Successor: Edward the Elder

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Andrew II, king of Hungary (1235)
  • Horio Tadaharu, daimyo in Japan (1633)

Thursday, October 25, 2012

[October 25] Antoine, duke of Brabant

Parents: Philip II, duke of Burgundy, and Margaret III, countess of Flanders
Born: August 1384
House: Capet-Valois
Spouse(s): (1) Jeanne, daughter of Waleran III, count of Ligny, and Maud of Kent, then (2) Elisabeth, duchess of Luxembourg, daughter of John, duke of Görlitz, and Richardis Catherine of Sweden
Predecessor: Jeanne
Reign: 1406 – 1415
Brief: Although second in birth to his brother John, future duke of Burgundy, Antoine received the duchy of Brabant from his aunt who died without children in 1406. Little is known about his life prior to the battle of Agincourt. When he arrived at the battle, he worse improvised armor and a surcoat made from a flag. He arrived late, but quickly entered the fray During the battle, he fought well but was captured by a group of English archers. Being dressed so poorly, he was executed as a common knight later that day among a group of nobles that included the counts of Alençon, and Nevers, and the duke of Lorraine. King Henry V of England did not know that he had such valuable nobles in his possession and he was strapped for men and money, leaving him little option but to execute prisoners. The battle was a complete loss for France and intensified the Hundred Years' War. 
Date of Death: 25 October 1415
Successor: John IV

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Marcellinus, pope of Rome (304)
  • Boniface V, pope of Rome (625)
  • Magnus I, king of Norway (1047)
  • Stephen, king of England (1154)
  • Charles, count of Dreux (1415)
  • John I, count of Alençon (1415)
  • Frederick, duke of Lorraine (1415)
  • Philip II, count of Nevers (1415)
  • João II, king of Portugal (1495)
  • George II, king of Great Britain (1760)
  • Abbas Mirza, shah of Persia (1833)
  • Alexander I, king of Greece (1920)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

[October 24] Valdemar IV, king of Denmark

Surame: "A New Dawn" (Atterdag)
Parents: Christopher II, king of Denmark, and Euphemia of Pomerania
Born: circa 1320
House: Estridsen
Spouse(s): Hedvig, daughter of Eric II, duke of Schelswig, and Adelaide of Holstein-Rendsburg
Predecessor: Christopher II
Reign: 1340 – 1375
Brief: Valdemar was a king in exile for the first eight years of his life. His father, Christopher, had been killed and the nobles of Denmark had taken over led by Count Gerhard III. In 1340, Gerhard was assassinated and Valdemar proclaimed king, though the nobles still hoped to control the young man. Almost as soon as he became king, Denmark went bankrupt. Valdemar spent most of his reign buying back lost lands, angering much of his populace by his high taxes. He was given the town of Copenhagen by the bishop of Roskilde, and Valdemar proclaimed it his new capital. By 1347, all of Denmark was back under royal control. The plague arrived two years later after an abandoned ship crashed on Danish soil. The plague killed up to 66% of the population, but Valdemar did not reduce taxes; instead he used it as an opportunity to take back more lands from the nobility. In the 1360s, open war broke out between Denmark and the Hanseatic League, with Denmark losing and being forced to sign the Treaty of Stralsund in 1370. He died five years later, still fighting the Jutlanders and other neighbors to assert Denmark's dominance in the region.
Date of Death: 24 October 1975
Successor: Olaf II

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Hugues, king of West Francia (996)
  • Said ad-Din Qutuz, sultan of Egypt (1260)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

[October 23] Chulalongkorn, king of Thailand

Full Name: Phra Bat Somdet Phra Poramintharamaha Chulalongkorn Phra Chunla Chom Klao Chao Yu Hua (พระบาทสมเด็จพระปรมินทรมหาจุฬาลงกรณ์ฯ พระจุลจอมเกล้าเจ้าอยู่หัว)
Surnamed: "The Great Beloved King" (พระปิยมหาราช)
Parents: Mongkut, king of Thailand, and Debsirindra
Born: 20 September 1853
House: Chakri
Spouse(s): (1) Sunandha Kumariratana, daughter of Mongkut, king of Thailand, and Piam, (2) Sukhumala Marasri, daughter of Mongkut, king of Thailand, and Samli, (3) Savang Vadhana, daughter of Mongkut, king of Thailand, and Piam, (4) Saovabha Phongsri, daughter of Mongkut, king of Thailand, and Piyamavadi, among many others
Predecessor: Mongkut
Reign: 1868 – 1910
Brief: Chulalongkorn, the fifth monarch of Thailand in his dynasty, was one of the most progressive leaders in Thailand's history, though he lost large portions of his kingdom to France and the United Kingdom. Ascending to the throne at the age of fifteen, Chulalongkorn toured India and Indonesia to learn modern administrative structures during his youth. In 1874, he added a Council of State and Privy Council to his government to better manage it. Wars in neighboring Burma forced Chulalongkorn to modernize his army throughout the 1880s, establishing a Royal Military Academy in 1887. Because he sent his sons to Europe to be educated, many returned with ideas favoring a constitutional monarchy, which Culalongkorn felt was premature in Thailand. French expansionism in Cambodia and Laos, both protectorates of Thailand, led to the Franco-Siamese War of 1893, which Thailand lost. The king felt that Thailand needed a larger navy, and he founded the Royal Thai Naval Academy in 1898 to support that cause. To fight future colonial powers. Chulalongkorn centralized his rule, increased patriotism by abolishing slavery and corvée labor, and improved his relationship with Raj India. He died in 1910 from kidney disease.
Date of Death: 23 October 1910
Successor: Vajiravudh

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Ignatius, patriarch of Constantinople (877)
  • Yazaman al-Khadim, emir of Tarsus (891)
  • Diago, emperor of Japan (930)

Monday, October 22, 2012

[October 22] Charles, mayor of the palace

Surnamed: "The Hammer" (Martel)
Parents: Pepin II, mayor of the palace
Born: circa 688
House: Carolingian
Spouse(s): (1) Rotrude, daughter of Leudwinus, count of Treves, and Willigard of Bavaria, then (2) Swanhild of the Agilolfings
Predecessor: Pepin II
Reign: 717 – 741
Brief: The career of Charles Martel began with a bang in 715 when he broke out of prison to be acclaimed mayor of the palace of Neustria. King Chilperic II and Mayor Ragenfrid, his rival, rallied against him and dealt Charles his only defeat the next year. In 717, he reentered the fray and defeated both his rivals, marching to Neustria and claiming victory, replacing Chilperic with Chlotar IV as king of Austrasia. Thus began Charles' long life of military success. He began his wars by attacking first the pagan Saxons, and then the rest of the Germanic tribes. By 731, Charles had turned his attention to the Moors in the south. At the Battle of Toulouse in 721, Charles had stopped the Muslim advance, but now a new war would be started to push the Muslims back into Hispania. A new push northward by the Muslims met with the hammer that was Charles Martel at the Battle of Tours. The defeat of the Umayyad Caliphate there may have been so important as to have saved Western Europe from complete Islamic domination. Charles continued pushing the Muslims southward even as he also continued incursions into Germany and Italy. The death of King Theuderic IV in 737 left the Merovingian throne vacant, and Charles took the title "prince and duke of the Franks" until his own death four years later. Charles spent the last four years of his life reorganizing the administration of his various realms to create a more efficient sate, which he then handed to his successors, Carloman and Pippin the Short.
Date of Death: 22 October 741
Successor: Carloman

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Fernando I, king of Portugal (1383)
  • William IV, prince of Orange (1751)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

[October 21] Go-Tsuchimikado, emperor of Japan

Local Name: 後土御門天皇
Parents: Go-Hanazono, emperor of Japan, and Öinomikado, daughter of Fujiwara Takanaga
Born: 3 July 1442
House: Japan
Spouse(s): Kasannoin Fujiwara
Predecessor: Go-Hanazono
Reign: 1464 – 1500
Brief: While little of note can be said of the reigns of the emperors of Japan in this era, a few important events occurred during Go-Tsuchimikado's reign that effected the future of the Japanese imperial family. Go-Tsuchimikado reigned during the Önin War, where Shinto shrines and temples across Japan were pillaged and ransacked. This led directly to the decline of the imperial family's financial stability. Tsuchimikado's reign was the longest prior to Emperor Meiji, but most of its was under the indirect leadership of first the emperor's uncle, and then his father. By the time the latter died in 1471, the war had devastated the reputation of the imperial family and few sought to revive it. Emperor Go-Tsuchimikado's death in 1500 was a passing note. His successor, his eldest son Go-Kashiwabara, lacked the funds to pay for a state funeral, and Tsuchimikado's body lay in a storeroom for a month while donations were made for his burial. Kashiwabara's reign was the lowest point in the history of the Japanese imperial family.
Date of Death: 21 October 1500
Successor: Go-Kashiwabara

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Alix, duchess of Brittany (1221)
  • Charles VI, king of France (1422)
  • Toda Katsushige, daimyo in Japan (1600)

Saturday, October 20, 2012

[October 20] Henri X, duke of Bavaria

Surnamed: "The Proud"
Parents: Henry IX, duke of Bavaria, and Wulfhilde of Saxony
Born: circa 1108
House: Welf
Spouse(s): Gertrud, daughter of Lothar III, Holy Roman Emperor, and Richenza of Northeim
Predecessor: Henri IX
Reign: 1126 – 1138
Brief: Henry was the eldest surviving son of his parents, and the heir not only to Bavaria, but to Saxony as well. He shared his territories with his younger brother, Welf VI. Henry furthered his fortunes in 1127 by marrying the only child of Holy Roman Emperor Lothar III. She was the heiress to three more Saxon families. Much of Henry's reign was spent campaigning for the Hohenstaufen brothers Frederick II of Swabia and Conrad of Franconia. Civil unrest in Bavaria forced Henry to forcefully repression rebellion. In 1136, Henry lead an army to southern Italy where he devastated the land. For his actions, he was made margrave of Tuscany and named Lothar's successor in Saxony. Lothar died the next year and Henry was a strong candidate for the Imperial crown, but he was blocked and Conrad of Franconia became emperor. A dispute broke out, and Henry was deprived of Saxony and Bavaria. He was preparing for war soon after retaking Saxony in 1139 when he died suddenly. Bavaria passed to a brother of the Emperor while Saxony passed to Albert the Lion of the Ascania family. Henry's son, Henry the Lion, eventually regained both duchies.
Date of Death: 20 October 1139
Successor: Leopold

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor (1740)

Friday, October 19, 2012

[October 19] John, king of England

Surnamed: "Lackland" (sanz Terre)
Parents: Henry II, king of England, and Eleanor, duchess of Aquitaine
Born: 24 December 1166
House: Plantagenet
Spouse(s): (1) Isabel, daughter of William, earl of Gloucester, and Hawise de Beaumont, then (2) Isabella, daughter of Aymer, count of Angoulême, and Alice of Courtenay
Predecessor: Richard I
Reign: 1199 – 1216
Brief: No other English monarch is less understood than King John. Demonized by romantic sagas such as Robin Hood, and praised as the establisher of the Magna Carta, few of the stories of John's life are entirely true. His rise to power came at the cost of his agnatic senior, Arthur, duke of Brittany, the son of John's elder brother, Geoffrey. When Richard I died, Arthur was to become king, but John seized the throne. In 1202, the king of France declared all John's French possessions to either be forfeit or Arthur's. While Arthur himself was captured in 1203 and died under mysterious circumstances, Normandy was completely lost to the French. By 1204, only Aquitaine remained as an English possession on the continent.

For the next decade, John campaigned and rallied support for his war to retake Normandy. In 1209, John was excommunicated for heavy interference in church lands within England and only reconciled in 1213. The fame of John's reign derives from the First Barons' War that was a direct result of the French wars. At a meeting near Windsor Castle in 1215, King John signed a peace agreement that gave the barons large independent powers from the king. It became the Magna Carta, "Great Charter," but it did not last for long. John contacted the pope who excommunicated the entire baronial assembly, and the Barons' War continued for another year. The king of Scots, Alexander II, and Llywelyn the Great of Wales both joined the barons in the rebellion, but the barons were still losing, so they invited Prince Louis, the French heir, to England and offered him the throne. Louis quickly conquered much of the south while John was in the north, but then began to lose the support of the barons. When John finally died of dysentery in October of 1216, the war only lasted another year. Louis abandoned his claim to the throne at the 1217 Treaty of Lambeth and the Magna Carta was reissued for the reign of the child Henry III.
Date of Death: 19 October 1216
Successor: Henry III

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Urban III, pope of Rome (1187)
  • Francesco I, grand duke of Tuscany (1587)
  • Louis, king of Portugal (1889)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

[October 18] Sancho III, king of Navarre

Surnamed: "The Great" (El Mayor)
Parents: García II, king of Navarre, and Jimena of Cea
Born: circa 992
House: Jiménez
Spouse(s): Muniadona Mayor, daughter of Sancho, count of Castile, and Urraca of Castile
Predecessor: García II
Reign: 1004 – 1035
Brief: Becoming king of Navarre as a minor, Sancho had great aspirations for his country and for Iberia in general. As early as 1015, he was working to expand his frontiers into Umayyad Spain. Opportunities arose to annex Sobrarbe and Ribagorza, and the county of Barcelona was forced to become a vassal to the Navarrese king. Next, he managed to annex Castile in 1027 following the untimely death of its count. The majority of Christian Spain was now under Sancho's control. Borders now secured, Sancho improved the major thoroughfare through the Pyrenees to Gascony where his ally, the duke of Gascony, could send pilgrims and knights to fight in the Reconquista. In 1034, after years of fighting, Sancho subdued and annexed León, the ancestral senior kingdom in Iberia, and had himself crowned Emperor of Spain. Unfortunately, a year later he was assassinated. His Iberian empire was divided between his many sons, never to be reunited again.
Date of Death: 18 October 1035
Successor: García III

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Jin Mingdi, emperor of China (325)
  • Leopold IV, duke of Bavaria (1141)
  • Gregory XII, pope of Rome (1417)
  • Pius III, pope of Rome (1503)
  • Fasilides, emperor of Ethiopia (1667)
  • Ludwig III, king of Bavaria (1921)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

[October 17] Petronila, queen of Aragón

Parents: Ramiro II, king of Aragón, and Agnes of Aquitaine
Born: 29 June 1136
House: Jiménez
Spouse(s): Ramon Berenguer IV, count of Barcelona, son of Ramon Berenguer III, count of Barcelona, and Douce I, countess of Provence
Predecessor: Ramiro II
Reign: 1137 – 1164
Brief: From the moment Petronilla was born, it was known that she would rule as queen regnant. She was married at the age of one to the count of Barcelona, Ramon Berenguer IV. Her father then abdicated the throne and resumed his monastic life leaving the regency of Aragón to Ramon Berenguer.  At the age of 15, she consummated her marriage and eventually produced five children. In 1162, her husband died and for two years she ruled solely. In 1164, she abdicated the throne in favor of her son, Ramon Berenguer, who changed his name to Alfonso II. He had already become count of Barcelona when his father died and, upon succeeding to the Aragonese throne, he became the first ruler over both realms. Petronilla does not seem to have taken up the regency for her son and died a decade later. She was buried in Bercelona Cathedral, though her tomb has long since been lost.
Date of Death: 17 October 1174
Successor: Alfonso II

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Boniface II, pope of Rome (532)

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

[October 16] Victor Amadeus III, king of Sardinia

Parents: Charles Emmanuel III, king of Sardinia, and Polyxena of Hesse-Rotenburg
Born: 26 June 1726
House: Savoy
Spouse(s): Maria Antonietta, daughter of Felipe V, king of Spain, and Elisabeth Farnese
Predecessor: Charles Emmanuel III
Reign: 1773 – 1796
Brief: Victor Amadeus was raised in the manner of a military general, though he surrounded himself with intellectuals. He was not overly public and he was highly religious, but his people loved him since he was kind and generous. As king of Sardinia, he maintained a conservative government that focused on strengthening the bureaucracy and reorganizing the military. When the French Revolution broke out, his two son-in-laws, the count of Artois and the count of Provence, to settle in Sardinia as a means to protect them. At the Battle of Montenotte, and then the battles of Millesimo and Mondovi—all in 1796—Sardinia lost most of its continental possessions, which were declared the Republic of Alba. Victor Amadeus was forced to become a French vassal, abandoning the First Coalition, and had to cede Nice and Savoy to France via the Treaty of Paris. He died a few months later with the knowledge that his ancestral lands in Savoy were under French occupation and his country was in economic ruin.
Date of Death: 16 October 1796
Successor: Charles Emmanuel IV

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Nicholas V, antipope of Rome (1333)
  • Louis, king of Sicily (1355)
  • Gregory XIV, pope of Rome (1591)

Monday, October 15, 2012

[October 15] Lambert, Holy Roman Emperor

Parents: Guy III, duke of Spoleto, and Ageltrude
Born: 880
House: Guideschi
Spouse(s): (1) Isabel, daughter of John, earl of Atholl, and Marjory of Mar, then (2) Isabella, daughter of Uilleam II, earl of Ross, and Euphemia
Predecessor: Guy
Reign: 892 – 898
Brief: The earliest records of Lambert begin with his coronation alongside his father in 891 at the age of roughly eleven. Pope Formosus, however, found the Guideschi emperor and his son intolerable and requested Arnulf of Carinthia, another man of Carolingian descent, to come and liberate Rome. A civil war in Italy broke out between the Guideschi's and Arnulf, with Guy dying in late 892. In 894, Arnulf returned with another army but decided against conquering all of Italy and deposing Lambert. For a third time in 895, Arnulf invaded but Lambert would not meet him in battle, which lost him considerable support among the nobility but saved his life. Arnulf conquered Rome in 896, freeing the pope and earning the crown. Lambert was formally deposed but Arnulf suffered a stroke and the pope died soon after, thus Lambert reasserted his claim. The new pope and his successor confirmed Lambert as emperor, but Lambert was assassinated in 898 while hunting after capturing Adalbert of Tuscany, one of his many rivals for the Italian throne. The Imperial throne was contested between multiple claimants while Spoleto fell to his brother, Guy IV.
Date of Death: 15 October 898
Successor: Arnulf (as Holy Roman Emperor), Guy IV (in Spoleto)

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Theophilus, pope of Alexandria (412)
  • Otto-Henry, duke of Burgundy (1002)
  • Urban VI, pope of Rome (1389)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

[October 14] Edward Bruce, high king of Ireland

Local Name: Edubard a Briuis
Parents: Robert, lord of Annandale, and Marjorie, countess of Carrick
Born: 1280
House: Bruce
Spouse(s): (1) Isabel, daughter of John, earl of Atholl, and Marjory of Mar, then (2) Isabella, daughter of Uilleam II, earl of Ross, and Euphemia
Predecessor: Brian Ó Néill
Reign: 1315 – 1318
Brief: As the younger brother of Robert the Bruce, king of Scots, Edward had high hopes for his life. These were realized in 1307 when he began campaigning for his brother as a general. He and Robert were the only survivors in the family when they were forced to go on the run and he commanded a unit during the famous Battle of Bannockburn in 1314 which secured Robert's crown. Edward then turned his eyes toward Ireland, which had not had a high king since 1260 when Brian Ó Néill was defeated by the Normans. Edward hoped to open a second front in the war against England by invading Ireland and claiming the vacant crown. He invaded Ireland with a large army but the English and their allies met him almost immediately. The English were routed and Edward was able to muster enough Irish nobles to proclaim him king. All of Ireland went up in rebellion, and the English were put on the defensive, eventually being forced into an area surrounding Dublin. Then in 1317, a famine struck Ireland, weakening his army and stalling the war. The next summer, the English were finally able to defeat the Scots-Irish alliance at the Battle of Faughart and Edward was killed. Ireland was never again able to assert itself against English colonial efforts and remained until the 1920s an English vassal state.
Date of Death: 14 October 1318

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:
  • Harold II, king of England (1066)
  • Kujo Yoritsugu, shogun of Japan (1256)
  • Amago, daimyo in Japan (1610)
  • Tewoflos, emperor of Ethiopia (1711)

Friday, October 12, 2012

[October 13] Iyasus I, emperor of Ethiopia

Surnamed: "The Great"
Local Name: ኢያሱ
Parents: Yohannes I, emperor of Ethiopia, and Sabla Wangel
Born: circa 1662
House: Solomon
Predecessor: Yohannes I
Reign: 1682 – 1706
Brief: Serving as governor of the Gojjam province until he was declared heir in 1682, Iyasus was a kind-hearted emperor. He was known for his devotion to administration, calling councils on both theological and governmental matters. He encouraged trade and lowered tariffs. A rebel uprising in 1684 forced him to suppress a usurper, Yeshaq. Iyasus was a diplomat who sent out envoys to many European countries including France. In 1699, an envoy returned with a French physician, Charles Poncet, who wrote about his stay in Ethiopia and his impressions of the emperor, which were overwhelmingly favorable. After a campaign in 1706, Iyasus retired to an island on Lake Tana, sparking an uprising by his son Tekle Haymanot. Iyasus was assassinated when he attempted to return to his capital and retake his throne. 
Date of Death: 13 October 1706
Successor: Tekle Haymanot I

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Claudius, emperor of Rome (54)
  • Robert I, count of Flanders (1093)
  • Maximilian I Joseph, king of Bavaria (1825)

[October 12] St. Edwin, king of Northumbria

Local Name: Ēadwine
Parents: Ælle, king of Deira
Born: circa 586
House: Deira
Spouse(s): (1) Cwenburg, daughter of Cearl, king of Mercia, then (2) Æthelburg, daughter of Ethelbert, king of Kent, and Bertha of the Franks
Predecessor: Æthelfrith
Reign: 616 – 632
Brief: Soon after Edwin was born, he was sent into exile with a rival relative taking the Deiran throne. His loyalty to Raedwald, king of East Anglia and bretwalda, ensured his succession to the Northumbrian throne in 616. Edwin ruled mostly as a client king, first under Raedwald and then under King Eadbald of Kent. Because of his marriage to Æthelburg in 627, all of Northumbria was converted to Christianity. By the year of his marriage, Edwin was the most powerful king in England, ruling over all of the north, parts of Mercia, the Isle of Man, and Anglesey. Late historians proclaimed Edwin a bretwalda—overlord—of the Angles and Saxons. He continued his conquest and subjugation of England and Wales until Penda of Mercia rose up in rebellion in 632. At the Battle of Hatfield Chase, Edwin was killed and his two sons were captured and executed. Northumbria reverted to paganism for a time, though a saint cult grew around the king.
Date of Death: 12 October 632
Successor: Osric (in Deira) and Eanfrith (in Bernicia)

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Honorius I, pope of Rome (638)
  • John IV, pope of Rome (642)
  • Leopold II, margrave of Austria (1095)
  • Michael IX, emperor of Constantinople (1320)
  • Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor (1576)
  • Frederick IV, king of Denmark and Norway (1730)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

[October 11] Sulaiman Khan, sultan of Bengal

House: Karrani
Predecessor: Taj Khan
Reign: 1566 – 1572
Brief: Serving as the second sultan of the Karrani dynasty to rule over Bengal, Sulaiman Khan ruled a small terrritory in the east of India under the authority of the Mughal Emperor Akbar. When Akbar defeated the Afghans in the west, many fled to Bengal to settle under the Karrani flag. Sulaiman fought constantly with his own desire to dominate the region. Avoiding publishing coins in his name, he sought to appease the emperor by placing Akbar's name in mosques and adding his name to the Khutbah sermon every Friday. In 1568, Sulaiman sent his son Bayazid with the general Kala Pahar against Orissa's king Mukunda Deva north of Bengal. He successfully conquered the entire region and append it to his growing realm. He followed this conquest with another to Kamata (Koch Bihar) and defeated them soundly. Sulaiman himself remained in his new capital at Tanda, which he had moved from Gaur when he ascended the throne. He died in 1572 leaving his small empire to Bayazid.
Date of Death: 11 October 1572
Successor: Bayazid Khan

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Robert I, count of Dreux (1188)
  • Boniface VIII, pope of Rome (1303)
  • Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor (1347)

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

[October 10] Hussein, Imam of Shi'a Islam

Full Name: Hussein ibn Ali ibn Abi Talib (حسين بن علي بن أبي طالب)
Parents: Ali, caliph of Islam, and Fatimah of Medina
Date of Birth: 8 January 626
House: Banu Hashim
Spouse(s): (1) Shahrbanu, daughter of Yazdegerd III, shah of Persia, (2) Rubab, daughter of Imra al-Qais, and (3) Layla, daughter of Abi Murrah bin 'Urwah
Predecessor: Hasan
Reign: 669 – 680
Brief: Hussein was the last grandchild born to the prophet Muhammad in his lifetime, the son of his daughter, Fatimah, and her husband, Ali. After Muhammad had died, Ali became the leader of the holy family and Hasan, Hussein's elder brother, was designated heir. Ali served briefly as Caliph of Islam from 656 to 661 but when Hasan was to become the next caliph, Muaqiyah, a member of the Umayyad faction, took control. Once he had consolidated power, Muaqiyah poisoned Hasan leaving control over the holy family and the schism Shi'a Islam group to Hussein in 669. Muaqiyah appointed his son, Yazid, his heir and Hussein rose up in rebellion against the Umayyad Caliphate. A succession war broke out since Muaqiyah was claiming the right to appoint an heir, something that had not yet been done with the Caliphate. When the old caliph died in 679, Hussein moved against the man's son, Yazid I. Their two armies met near the town at Karbala, where they bickered for days before Hussein's group of followers attacked the larger Umayyad army. The entire group was killed and beheaded, then left for forty days without burial. His youngest son, Ali, was not present at the battle and succeeded him.
Date of Death: 10 October 680
Successor: Ali

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Hugues IV, king of Cyprus (1359)
  • Carol I, king of Romania (1914)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

[October 9] Alexander I, king of Yugoslavia

Local Name: Aleksandar (Александар Ујединитељ)
Surnamed: "The Unifier" (Ujedinitelj)
Parents: Peter I, king of Serbia, and Zorka of Montenegro
Date of Birth: 16 Dcember 1888
House: Karadordevic
Spouse(s): Maria, daughter of Ferdinand, king of Romania, and Marie of Edinburgh
Predecessor: Peter I
Reign: 1929 – 1934
Brief: The second son of King Peter I of Serbia, Alexander became the crown prince when his brother was forced to renounce the throne due to mental instability. Alexander came into his own during the First and Second Balkan Wars where he served as the commander of the First Army. In 1914, Alexander was declared regent for his father. As World War I wore on, Alexander and his army were pushed back into Montenegro, Albania, and finally the Greek island of Corfu, but they were able to regroup and push the Central Powers out of the Balkans by the time peace was declared in 1918. In December 1918, Alexander accepted the title of King of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes for his father. Three years later, Alexander was that king. A coup in January 1929 allowed Alexander to take direct control over his government and he renamed the country the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, a name the kingdom had been popularly called since 1918. On 9 October 1934, Alexander was on a state visit to France when a gunman shot the king, his chauffeur, and the French foreign minister. All three died by the end of the day. The assassin was immediately cut down with a sword by a mounted French policeman before the crowd beat him to death. Alexander's assassination was one of the first recorded on film.
Date of Death: 9 October 1934
Successor: Peter II

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Clement II, pope of Rome (1047)
  • John I, king of Castile (1390)
  • Ashikaga Yoshiaki, shogun of Japan (1597)
  • Ernst Ludwig, grand duke of Hesse and by Rhine (1937)
  • Pius XII, pope of Rome (1958)

Monday, October 8, 2012

[October 8] John I, duke of Brittany

Local Name: Yann Iañ
Surnamed: "The Red" (Le Roux)
Parents: Peter, earl of Richmond, and Alix, duchess of Brittany
House: Dreux
Spouse(s): Blanche, daughter of Theobald I, king of Navarre, and Agnes of Beaujeu
Predecessor: Alix
Reign: 1221 – 1286
Brief: Surnamed for the color of the beard he frequently sported, John I is a long-ruling but little discussed duke of Brittany. Until 1237, his father, Peter, ruled as regent for him after his mother, Alix, the heiress and duchess died. The year before he took over the government, he married the daughter of the Navarrese king. Much of his reign was consumed by a feud with the bishopric of Nantes and the Breton clergy, though it never became violent. In 1240, John exiled the Jews from Brittany, though he did cancel all debts owed by the Jews to the state. In 1270, he joined the Eighth Crusade with King Louis IX and survived the plague that took the life of the king. He died sixteen years later in the midst of a century of relative peace in Brittany.
Date of Death: 8 October 1286
Successor: John II

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Fushimi, emperor of Japan (1317)
  • John George I, elector of Saxony (1656)
  • Yongzheng, emperor of China (1735)

Sunday, October 7, 2012

[October 7] St. Mark, pope of Rome

Parents: Priscus, a Roman citizen
Predecessor: Sylvester I
Reign: 336
Brief: A little known pope of the era of Emperor Constantine the Great, Saint Mark is often confused with the evangelist and colleague of St. Peter. While not much can be said of his nine-month reign as pope, it is said that the early lists of bishops and martyrs were compiled during his pontificate. The Bishop of Ostia, a bishopric within Rome, was granted the power to consecrate popes during his reign, and that bishop later became synonymous with the Dean of the College of Cardinals. He is also said to have founded the Basilica of San Marco in Rome and a cemetery church over the Catacomb of Balbina, outside of Rome, where he was eventually buried after dying of natural causes.
Date of Death: 7 October 336
Successor: Julius I

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Charles III, king of France (929)
  • Victor Amadeus I, duke of Savoy (1637)
  • Guru Gobind Singh, Sikh Guru (1708)

Saturday, October 6, 2012

[October 6] Charles II, emperor of Rome

Surnamed: "The Bald"
Parents: Louis I, emperor of Rome, and Judith
Date of Birth: 13 June 823
House: Carolingian
Spouse(s): (1) Ermentrude, daughter of Odo I, count of Orléans, and Engeltrude, then (2) Richilde, daughter of Bivin, count of Ardennes
Predecessor: Louis II
Reign: 875 – 877
Brief: The youngest son of Emperor Louis the Pious, Charles was a somewhat unexpected heir who was given West Francia following the Treaty of Verdun n 843. In the fighting prior to the treaty, Charles allied with his brother, Louis, against Emperor Lothair I, defeating him in 841. As king in what would one day be France, Charles ruled a relatively peaceful land except for the southern regions where constant warfare with the Moors occasionally drew his interest. After some infighting throughout the 860s, Charles and Louis divided the lands of Lothair II according to the Treaty of Mersen. Viking attacks from the north and rebellions in Brittany dominated the remaining years of his administration in West Francia. In a surprise move, the king was crowned Emperor Charles II in 875 following the death of his nephew. This sparked a new round of civil war between the rival branches of the Carolingians. To make matters worse, increased attacks by the Moors in Italy forced Charles to send an army to help the pope, though few of his nobles would back the expedition. Emperor Charles died while returning from the short campaign in southern Italy and was buried in Burgundy.
Date of Death: 6 October 877
Successor: Charles III (as Emperor), Louis II (in West Francia)

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Samuil, tsar of Bulgaria (1014)
  • Dawit I, emperor of Ethiopia (1413)
  • Charles Emmanuel IV, king of Sardinia (1819)
  • Duc Duc, emperor of Vietnam (1883)

Thursday, October 4, 2012

[October 5] Alfonso VIII, king of Castile

Surnamed: "The Noble"
Parents: Sancho III, king of Castile, and Blanche of Navarre
Date of Birth: 11 November 1155
House: Burgundy
Spouse(s): Eleanor, daughter of Henry II, king of England, and Eleanor, duchess of Aquitaine
Predecessor: Sancho III
Reign: 1158 – 1214
Brief: Raised by a trouble regency alliance, Alfonso asserted himself at the age of fifteen and began to actively retake lands held by the Almohad Moors. He had his first victory in 1177 against the city of Vuenca, and he followed by forming an brief alliance between Navarre, León, Portugal, and Arágon against the southern Muslim empire. The Treaty of Cazola in 1179 defined which areas of the south would go to which countries. Open warfare between the Christians and the Almohads broke out in 1195 and at the Battle of Alarcos, Alfonso was defeated by Caliph Abu Yaqub Yusuf al-Mansur. Castile went on the defensive and were pushed back to the hills just south of Toledo, Castile's capital. In 1212, the pope called a second crusade which Alfonso led. One-by-one, the cities of the Almohads were retaken and at Las Navas de Tolosa on July 16th, Caliph Muhammad an-Nasir fled and the Almohads left the peninsula. Alfonso died two years later and was succeeded by his son, Enrique.
Date of Death: 5 October 1214
Successor: Enrique I

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Justin II, emperor of Constantinople (578)
  • Henry III, Holy Roman Emperor (1056)
  • Philippe III, king of France (1285)

[October 4] Herman VI, margrave of Baden-Baden

Parents: Herman V, margrave of Baden, and Irmengard of the Palatinate
Date of Birth: 11 July 1238
House: Zähringen
Spouse(s): Gertrude, daughter of Henry, duke of Mödling, and Agnes of Thuringia
Predecessor: Hermann V
Reign: 1243 – 1250
Brief: Although ruling over a relatively marginal German marcher county, Herman rose to prominence in 1248 when he married Gertrude, the niece of the last member of the Babenberg dynasty which had ruled over Austria for the past four centuries. He claimed the duchies immediately on behalf of his wife and allowed his younger brother, Rudolf, to rule them in his name. A rival, Ottokar II, king of Bohemia, claimed the duchy in 1252 on behalf of his own wife, Margaret, sister of the last Babenburg duke, and things became complicated. Unfortunately for Herman's family, the aristocracy of Austria favored Ottokar over the margraves of Baden, despite the fact that the Baden margraves had papal approval of his titles. Ottokar kept them until 1278 when they were reverted by Imperial decree to the House of Habsburg, which now ruled the Holy Roman Empire. Little mattered to Herman, however, as he died quietly in 1250 and his son, Frederick, succeeded him in his claims to Austria.
Date of Death: 4 October 1250
Successor: Frederick I

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Vladimir, prince of Novgorod (1052)
  • William III, count of Ponthieu (1221)
  • Kameyama, emperor of Japan (1305)
  • Sarsa Dengel, emperor of Ethiopia (1597)

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

[October 3] Dafydd II, prince of Wales

Parents: Gruffudd of Gwynedd and Serena of Wales
Date of Birth: 11 July 1238
House: Aberffraw
Spouse(s): Elizabeth, daughter of William de Ferrers, earl of Derby, and Margaret de Quincy
Predecessor: Llywelyn III
Reign: 1282 – 1283
Brief: The last prince of an autonomous Welsh state, Dafydd II was the grandson of Llywelyn the Great on both his parent's sides. At the age of 17, he joined his brother, Owain, in battle against their brother, Llywelyn, at the Battle of Bryn Derwin. Dafydd rose up in rebellion again in 1263 when Llyweyln was recognized as prince of Wales. A third rebellion in 1277 was his last, and in December 1282, Dafydd became prince of Wales. For six months, Dafydd and his brother, Owain, fought a guerrilla campaign against King Edward I of England. On June 22nd, he was captured and for a week paraded on a caravan into England. Parliament condemned the prince to death in what became the first English execution for high treason, and the first case of royal hanging, drawing, and quartering. 
Date of Death: 2 October 1238
Successor: Madog

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Iziaslav I, grand prince of Kiev (1078)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

[October 2] Gilbert, duke of Lorraine

Parents: Reginar, duke of Lorraine, and Hersinda
Date of Birth: 890
House: Reginarid
Spouse(s): Gerberga, daughter of Henry I, king of Germany, and Matilda of Ringelheim
Predecessor: Gebhard
Reign: 925 – 939
Brief: Charles III was king over the West Franks when Gilbert became the dux Lotharingiae around 910. The time of his nomination to the kingship remains uncertain, but it is clear that the duke was loyal to his overlord while Charles was in exile in Lorraine. In 925, after Charles had been imprisoned by King Robert I, Gilbert shifted his allegiance to Henry the Fowler, the king of Germany. The duke married the king's daughter, Gerberga and his titles in Lorraine were renewed. When Henry died in 936, Gilbert rebelled and shifted back to his West Frankish loyalties, perhaps in the hope that he could remain autonomous. At the Battle of Andernach, Henry's son Otto I reasserted German authority over Lorraine, imprisoning Gilbert. Gilbert drowned while attempting to escape over the Rhine. The duchy was given to the duke of Bavaria as a fief.
Date of Death: 2 October 939
Successor: Henri

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Athalaric, king of the Ostrogoths (534)
  • Demetrios I, patriarch of Constantinople (1991)

Monday, October 1, 2012

[October 1] Abdur Rahman Khan, emir of Afghanistan

Native Name: عبد رحمان خان
Surnamed: "The Iron Amir"
Parents: Mohammad Afzal Khan, emir of Afghanistan
Date of Birth: around 1840
House: Barakzai
Predecessor: Ayub
Reign: 1880 – 1901
Brief: The early years of Abdur Rahman's life were dominated by political infighting over the succession to the Afghan throne. In 1868, Abdur was finally forced to flee to Persia after briefly serving as governor of northern Afghanistan for his brother, Azam Khan. After eleven years in exile, the British government invited him to return to Afghanistan and take over the government following the conclusion of the Second Anglo-Afghan War in 1880. It only took a few years to remove most of the British presence from the land and secure his throne from would-be usurper relatives. Balanced between British India on one side and the Russian Empire on the other, Abdur Rahman attempted to remain as a neutral buffer between the two states. By the time of his death, he had consolidated full control over Afghanistan like none of the rulers before him, defeating local tribes and silencing rebellious family members, though he did all this through blatant coercion, espionage, and despotism. The internationally-recognized border of Afghanistan with Pakistan was determined by international conference during his reign. His son succeeded to the emirate after him.
Date of Death: 1 October 1901
Successor: Habibullah Khan

Other Monarchs Who Died Today:

  • Eadwig, king of the English (959)
  • Alan III, duke of Brittany (1040)
  • Gerard de Ridefort, grand master of the Knights Templar (1189)
  • Boniface IX, pope of Rome (1404)
  • Mindon Min, king of Burma (1878)


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