Matthew, Count of Boulogne

Matthew, Count of Boulogne, also known as Matthew of Alsace (c.  1137–1173) was the second son of Thierry, Count of Flanders and Sibylla of Anjou. Matthew forcibly abducted the nun Marie de Boulogne, daughter of Stephen, King of England, and constrained her into marriage, claiming the title of Count of Boulogne jure uxoris in 1160. The forced marriage was opposed by the Church and finally annulled in 1170, but he continued to rule as count until his death.

Matthew, Count of Boulogne
Blason Courtenay.svg
Coat of arms of the county of Boulogne
Count of Boulogne
Reign1160 - 1173
PredecessorMarie I
Bornc.  1137
Died1173 (aged c. 36)
Noble familyHouse of Alsace
Spouse(s)Marie de Boulogne
Eleanor of Vermandois
IssueIda, Countess of Boulogne
Matilda of Flanders, Duchess of Brabant
FatherThierry, Count of Flanders
MotherSibylla of Anjou

Matthew and Marie had two daughters: Ida, Countess of Boulogne, and Maud of Boulogne.[1] Maud married Henry I, Duke of Brabant.[2] In 1171, Matthew married Eleanor, daughter of Ralph I, Count of Vermandois, they had one short-lived daughter.[3]

Matthew was a supporter of Henry the Young King,[4] and received lands in England. He died fighting at the siege of Driencourt,[5] during the 1173–74 revolt of Henry II of England's sons, under the leadership of Philip of Flanders. Wounded by a crossbow bolt, he did not recover.[6]


  1. ^ McDougall 2017, p. 204.
  2. ^ George 1875, p. table xxix.
  3. ^ Dyggve 1935, p. 67-68.
  4. ^ Strickland 2016, p. 139.
  5. ^ Flori 2007, p. 106.
  6. ^ Gillingham 1989, p. 67.


  • Dyggve, Holger Petersen (1935). "Personnages historiques figurant dans la poésie lyrique française des XII e et XIII e siècles. III: Les dames du »Tournoiement» de Huon d'Oisi". Neuphilologische Mitteilungen (in French). 36 (2): 65–91.
  • Flori, Jean (2007). Eleanor of Aquitaine: Queen and Rebel. Edinburgh University Press.
  • George, Hereford Brooke (1875). Genealogical Tables Illustrative of Modern History. Oxford at the Clarendon Press.
  • Gillingham, John (1989). Richard the Lionheart. Yale University Press.
  • McDougall, Sara (2017). Royal Bastards: The Birth of Illegitimacy, 800-1230. Oxford University Press.
  • Strickland, Matthew (2016). Henry the Young King, 1155-1183. Yale University Press.

Preceded by Count of Boulogne
with Marie
Succeeded by