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Number 50. May of 2002. Spanish language  Principal menu

Ramiro II th, The Monk

     One assumes been born in Jaca, 1084 and passed away in Huesca the 16 of August of 1157. He was king of Aragón, the last of the children of Sancho Ramirez and Felicia de Roucy.
     The Aragonese monarchy, then was dual: of a side, a western nucleus that spoke ` euzkera '; and of another one, the Eastern regions, of Romance language. At those moments, in the Court it was let feel certain tendencies of beyond the Pyrenees; so that an Abbot of the Midi, call Frotardo (of Saint Ponce of Thomieres - France -), influenced directly in the monarch, since Ramiro was sent by its father - in 1093- to that monastery, with the intention of which he got to be monk. Ramiro lived his childhood there, but little more he knows during his stay, unless in 1105 still he was in that monastery. However, the death of his brother Pedro, and the proclamation of Alfonso like king, would force to him to approach the throne.
     In 1110he is in Spain already , and Alfonso El Batallador (the Fighting) orders then to him the government of the abbey of Sahagún, in where he attracted the respect of bourgeois and enmity of monks. To the end of 1114, bishop he is named of Burgos city; soon to be it of Pamplona, although without canonical effectiveness.
    In the meantime, the kingdom underwent modifications with the conquests of Alfonso, and it appeared an important economic crisis, and parallelly social tensions of classes. The defeat of Fraga city, would also demonstrate certain fragility of the army (1134); by then, Ramiro was chosen bishop of Roda town, being shortly after, the 7 of September, when Alfonso would pass away, in Poleñino town. His testament, that was not lacking of legal anomalies, instituted three heiresses: the Orders of Temple, Santo Sepulcro and the Hospital of San Juán; what created serious problems to Ramiro .
     The situation was the following one: Jaca chose to Ramiro king; Pamplona to García Ramírez; Alfonso VII seized of Soria and Rioja, to the time that Ramiro is forced to negotiate with Muslims (truces) and the kingdom of Pamplona, by means of pacts (1135). At that time, García Ramírez, stays as king (military subjects), but recognizes the sovereignty of Ramiro II (he governs the town). It was managed to fit the borders, but the pact was left shortly broken by the union of Alfonso VII and García Ramírez. The kingdom of Aragón lost its euzkeras roots.
     Between 1135-1136 Inocencio II it urges to Ramiro to that he fulfills the testament of the Batallador (Fighting) and then movements of opposition appear; a difficult situation is crossed, and it is gotten to suspect that it had been expelled from the kingdom. In the month of October he is in Biel town and he introduces changes in the possessions: Pedro Talesa appears like Lord of Huesca.
     In order to surpass the economic crisis, it resorted to the treasure of the churches and from the monasteries and the 13 of November of 1135, it gets to devaluate the currency of Jaca, with which the popular wraths against the Jews was untied.
     But... he found an unexpected solution: he married with Inés de Poitiers, widow of Toars; although this determination was not well received by the nobles.
     Ramiro, however, resolved it with the decapitation of seven nobles that broke the truce with the Muslims (the legend of the Bell of Huesca arises here). The situation untied a revolt in 1136 that could be dominated not without abundant blood. Ramiro Ramiro II El Monje, is named King of Aragón, in 1134looked for support in Alfonso VII, with whom agreed. But the birth of Petronila, put a light of hope of the crisis outing, finding who would marry her to govern the kingdom. To this aim, was chosen Ramón Berenguer IV, count of Barcelona, being carried out the agreement in Barbastro the 11 of August of 1137; this would allow to a reconstruction of territories and competitions of government.
     Of this luck, Ramiro would be ` king, gentleman, and father in his kingdom and the counties of Ramon Berenguer; and the count would commit itself to vindicate the Saragosse kingdom, Tudela and other Navarrese seats. He obtained this way that the León city emperor, gave back his possessions on territories of Saragosse; from this cession, Ramón Berenguer took the title from ` Princeps aragonensium'. Also Ramón Berenguer, managed to solve the claims of the military orders, but he failed as opposed to the problem of Navarre; in the armed confrontation, García Ramírez takes several Aragonese seats, and in an incursion by the Channel of Berdún, he arrived until Jaca, setting fire to the Burgo Nuevo (1141).
     Before the military failure, the count opened negotiations with García Ramírez, arriving itself at the pact of 1149, in which marriage Ramón Berenguer with Blanca, daughter of the monarch of Pamplona, but it does not get itself to fulfill and in 1151 the count marries with the Aragonese, being assured the stability the kingdom and the union the counties dominated by Ramón Berenguer.
     Ramiro, retired in the priorato of San Pedro El Viejo of Huesca, passed away in 1157. Aragón, haved surpassed the most important and dangerous crisis of its history. The opening to the Cantabrian had was lost, but the access to the Mediterranean offered a good perspective. .

* Gathered of diverse sources for M. Tomé

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