Guilla of Provence

Guilla of Provence or of Burgundy (died before 924) was an early medieval Frankish queen in the Rhone valley.

It is certain that she was first consort of king Rudolf I of Upper Burgundy (who was proclaimed king in 888 and died on 25 October 911) and later, from 912, consort of Hugh of Arles, border count of Provence, who in 926 became king of Northern Italy.

Everything else in her genealogy is more or less uncertain. She is believed to have been a daughter of king Boso of Lower Burgundy (Provence), and she is presumed to have been the mother of king Rudolf II of Upper Burgundy and Italy. These two kinships enjoy some indicative support from near-contemporary sources. The first-mentioned kinship would make her a sibling, at least half-sister, of king Louis III of Italy. The second would mean she were an ancestress of the last independent Burgundian royal house, and through it ancestress of last Ottonian emperors, of the last Carolingian king of France, of a number of dukes of Swabia, of the later Guelph dynasty, and of the Salian Imperial House, as well as of practically all European royal families since High Middle Ages.

Furthermore, genealogies that are regarded mostly as wishful thinking by critical research, have for centuries claimed that:

  • Guilla's mother was Ermengarde of Italy, one of the heiresses of last Carolingians, who was daughter of Emperor Louis II, king of Italy, and became the last of the wives of king Boso of Lower Burgundy. This, however, is fairly unlikely, as Ermengarde's marriage with king Boso took place in 878, a date when Guilla was likely already born.
  • Guilla was the only wife of king Rudolf I of Upper Burgundy. This is not certain, as she possibly was yet of an age capable of child-bearing at her marriage in 912 with the count Hugh, the future Italian king; and her first husband, the king Rudolf I, is mentioned as having several children already by 888 (who thus could have been born of an earlier, to us unknown, wife of Rudolf).

Queen Guilla's date of death, after 912 and before 924, is determined because of a charter (expressing her to be dead) dated in 924. After her death, in 926, her widower, Count Hugh, took over the kingdom of Italy from Rudolf II of Burgundy (who was either stepson or own son of Guilla).

Name Guilla of Provence
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