Joan II of Navarre

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Joan II
Jana2Navarra SaintDenis.jpg
Queen of Navarre
Reign 1 February 1328 – 6 October 1349
Coronation 5 March 1329 (Pamplona)
Predecessor Charles I
Successor Charles II
Spouse Philip III, King of Navarre
Issue Maria, Queen of Aragon
Blanche, Queen of France
Charles II, King of Navarre
Agnes, Countess of Foix
Philip, Count of Longueville
Louis, Duke of Durazzo
House House of Capet
Father Louis I, King of Navarre
Mother Margaret of Burgundy
Born 28 January 1312
Died 6 October 1349(1349-10-06) (aged 37)

Joan II (28 January 1312 – 6 October 1349) was Queen of Navarre from 1328 until her death. She was the only child of Louis X of France, King of France and Navarre, and Margaret of Burgundy. Because Margaret was known to have been involved in an extramarital affair, Joan's paternity was questioned by those who wished to refute her claim to the thrones of France, Navarre and Champagne.


On the deaths of Louis X (1316) and his son, John I (also 1316), both of whom had been kings of France and Navarre, she was excluded from the succession in favor of Louis' brother Philip V of France (Philip II of Navarre), the second surviving son of Philip IV of France. Philip V prevailed for a number of reasons, including her youth, doubts regarding her paternity, and the Estates-General's determination that women should not be allowed to rule France. The last reason, however, was not applicable to Navarre because there was already precedent there for succession by a female. The only reason that she was not officially declared a bastard was that Philip needed the political support of her mother's brother Odo IV, Duke of Burgundy, who did not want to perpetuate the scandal of his sister's behavior. After Philip V's brother and successor Charles IV of France (Charles I of Navarre) died in 1328, there was no male heir to either crown in the direct line from Philip IV. Instead, a more distant Philip, a descendant of Philip IV's younger brother Charles of Valois, successfully claimed the throne as Philip VI of France in preference to Joan and a number of other females closer to the line of succession. Philip was not descended from Joan I of Navarre, and hence had no claim to the crown of Navarre.

Queen of Navarre[edit]

Joan became Queen of Navarre through a treaty with Philip VI, who was not a descendant of the later kings of Navarre, and who could not invoke a rule against female succession in Navarre. In the treaty, she had to renounce her claims not only to the crown of France but also to her grandmother's estates in Brie and Champagne (which were merged in the French royal domain). In compensation, she received the counties of Angoulême and Mortain as well as a portion of Cotentin (Longueville). Later on she exchanged Angoulême for three estates in Vexin:- Pontoise, Beaumont-sur-Oise, and Asnière-sur-Oise.

She reigned as Queen of Navarre until her death in 1349, together with her husband, Philip III of Navarre as de jure uxoris king, 1329–1343. Philip was also Count of Évreux, the heir of Count Louis of Évreux (youngest son of Philip III of France), and thus of Capetian male blood. Because of his patrimonial lands, together with Joan's gains in Normandy and her rights in Champagne, the couple had extensive possessions in Northern France. She was buried alongside him in the Basilica of St Denis, though both their hearts were buried at the now-demolished church of the Couvent des Jacobins in Paris.

Altogether, Joan and Philip had eight children. She was succeeded by their son Charles II of Navarre. Their daughter Blanche d'Évreux became the second wife of Philip VI of France.

Although Joan never ascended the French throne, her descendants and heirs, the kings of Navarre, were to eventually reach the throne of France when Henry IV of France inherited the crown two centuries later, in 1589. From then onwards, all kings of France were Joan's heirs general. The kings of France had already been descended from her since the ascension of Henry II; these were not, however, senior descendants of Joan.



  1. ^ Jonathan Sumption, The Hundred Years War, Volume 2: Trial by Fire, (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1999), 103.


Joan II of Navarre
Born: 28 January 1312 Died: 6 October 1349
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Charles I
Queen of Navarre
Succeeded by
Charles II
Title last held by
Countess of Angoulême
Title next held by
Charles de la Cerda
Title last held by
Joan I
Countess of Mortain
Title next held by
Vacant Countess of Longueville
Succeeded by