Jean II de Croÿ
Jean II belonged to the powerful House of Croÿ. He was the second surviving son of Jean I de Croÿ and Marie de Craon. His elder brother was Antoine I de Croÿ. Jean II de Croÿ was a prominent member of the Burgundian court. He governed Hainaut and Namur in the name of the Dukes of Burgundy as grand bailli de Hainaut. His dominions were centred on the town of Chimay, of which he became the first count. In 1430, he was made one of the very first Knights of the Order of the Golden Fleece.
He had been godfather to Charles the Bold in 1433 and to the Dauphin in 1459. In 1435 he played an important part in the formation of the Congress of Arras. He was subsequently charged with bringing the city of Amiens under Burgundian control. In 1436 he commanded the Burgundian-Flemish army that besieged Calais and was blamed for the complete failure of the expedition. During the Revolt of Ghent (1449–1453), he lifted the siege of Oudenaarde and in 1453, he defeated William I of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel at Thionville, securing the Duchy of Luxembourg for Burgundy.
He was also amongst those who took the Vow of the Pheasant in 1454. Jean had a great influence on Philip the Good, for which he was hated by Charles the Bold. When Charles the Bold came to power in 1465, he exiled Jean, as well as his son Philip I of Croÿ-Chimay and his brother Antoine I de Croÿ. Jean only reconciled with Charles in 1473, the year of his death.
Marriage and children
He was the progenitor of the only line of the House of Croÿ extant today, that of Croÿ-Solre.
He married Marie of Lalaing (1390–1474) and had three children.
- Jacqueline (1430–1500)
- Philip de Croy-Chimay (Mons, 1430 – Bruges September 18, 1482), lord of Quievrain, his successor
- Catherine (1440–1515)
- Richard Vaughan, Philip the Good, (Boydell Press, 2002), 195-196.
- Richard Vaughan, Charles the Bold, (Boydell Press, 2002), 248.