Walter III, Count of Brienne
Walter III of Brienne (died June 14, 1205) was the Count of Brienne 1191–1205, Prince of Taranto, Duke of Apulia, and Count of Lecce, and titular King of Sicily 1201–1205. He was the son of Erard II of Brienne and Agnès of Montfaucon.
In 1200 he married Elvira, daughter of Tancred of Sicily and sister and heiress of the deposed king William III of Sicily. At the time of their marriage, she and her family were exiles in France, trying to find allies to reclaim the Kingdom of Sicily from the young King Frederick. As her husband, Walter was recognized by Pope Innocent III as Prince of Taranto, Duke of Apulia, and Count of Lecce. After the Battle of Agnella in 1201, he took the title of King of Sicily. In 1204, he was besieged in the fortress of Terracina by Diepold of Vohburg and lost an eye to an arrow, but he broke the siege and put Diepold to flight. On June 11, 1205, he was ambushed by a sally of Diepold's while besieging him at Sarno and mortally wounded. He died in German hands on June 14, 1205, and was buried at the church of St. Maria della Foce in Sarno.
In 1205, his widow gave birth to his son
- Walter IV of Brienne; but he received only the County of Brienne, his Sicilian inheritance having been confiscated because of his father's rebellion.
- Guy Perry, John of Brienne: King of Jerusalem, Emperor of Constantinople, c.1175-1237, (Cambridge University Press, 2013), 16.
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