Sancha of Castile (21 September 1154/5 – 9 November 1208) was the only surviving child of King Alfonso VII of Castile by his second wife, Richeza of Poland. On January 18, 1174, she married King Alfonso II of Aragon at Zaragoza; they had at least eight children who survived into adulthood.
|Sancha of Castile|
|Queen consort of Aragon|
|Tenure||18 January 1174 – 25 April 1196|
|Born||21 September 1154/5|
|Died||9 November 1208|
Villanueva de Sigena, Kingdom of Aragon
|Spouse||Alfonso II of Aragon|
|Constance of Aragon|
Peter II of Aragon
Alfonso II, Count of Provence
|House||Castilian House of Ivrea|
|Father||Alfonso VII of León and Castile|
|Mother||Richeza of Poland|
A patroness of troubadours such as Giraud de Calanson and Peire Raymond, the queen became involved in a legal dispute with her husband concerning properties which formed part of her dower estates. In 1177 she entered the county of Ribagorza and took forcible possession of various castles and fortresses which had belonged to the crown there.
After her husband died at Perpignan in 1196, Sancha was relegated to the background of political affairs by her son Peter II. She retired from court, withdrawing to the Hospitaller convent for noble ladies, the Monastery of Santa María de Sigena, at Sigena, which she had founded. There she assumed the cross of the Order of St John of Jerusalem which she wore until the end of her life. The queen mother entertained her widowed daughter Constance at Sigena prior to her leaving Aragon to marry Emperor Frederick II in 1208. She died soon afterwards, aged fifty-four, and was interred in front of the high altar of her foundation at the Monastery of Santa María de Sigena; her tomb is still there to be seen.
- Peter II (1174/76 – 14 September 1213), King of Aragon and Lord of Montpellier.
- Constance (1179 – 23 June 1222), married firstly King Imre of Hungary and secondly Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor.
- Alfonso II (1180 – February 1209), Count of Provence, Millau and Razès.
- Eleanor (1182 – February 1226), married Count Raymond VI of Toulouse.
- Ramon Berenguer (ca. 1183/85 – died young).
- Sancha (1186 – aft. 1241), married Count Raymond VII of Toulouse, in March 1211
- Ferdinand (1190 – 1249), cistercian monk, Abbot of Montearagón.
- Dulcia (1192 – ?), a nun at Sijena.
- Doran, John; Smith, Damian J. (2008). Pope Celestine III (1191-1198): Diplomat and Pastor. Ashgate.
- Kedar, Benjamin Z.; Phillips, Jonathan; Riley-Smith, Jonathan, eds. (2005). Crusades. Vol. 4. Ashgate Publishing.
- Luscombe, David; Riley-Smith, Jonathan, eds. (2004). The New Cambridge Medieval History, C.1024-c.1198. Vol. IV. Cambridge University Press.
- Martin, Therese, ed. (2012). Reassessing the Roles of Women as 'Makers' of Medieval Art and Architecture. Brill.