1137 (The People's Chronology)
William X, duke of Aquitaine and Gascony, count of Poitu, dies while on a pilgrimage at Santiago de Compostela, Spain, April 9 at age 37, leaving his daughter Eleanor of Guienne, 15, as duchess of Aquitaine and countess of Poitu. Her feudal overlord, Louis VI (Louis the Fat), sends his 16-year-old son, Louis Capet, to Bordeaux to marry her but dies at Paris August 1 at age 56 after a 29-year reign in which he has fought England's Henry I and regained royal authority over the feudal lords of the Ile-de-France and Orléans. Eleanor of Aquitaine inherits her father's lands, becomes queen of France, and unites Aquitaine with the Capetian line; her husband will reign until 1180 as Louis VII, but her own destiny will be quite different (see 1146).
Ramon Berenguer IV, count of Barcelona, is married August 11 to the Aragonese princess Petronila (Peronella), whose father, Ramiro II, abdicates November 13 in favor of his son-in-law and daughter. Ramon Berenguer will never call himself king of Aragon, but his descendants will reign as such. Ramiro's abdication initiates a period of wars and intrigues among the Spanish kingdoms that will continue until 1149 even as they face the common threat presented by the Muslim Almohads.
The prince of North Wales Gruffydd ap Cynan dies at age 56 after having rebuilt Welsh power overturned earlier by England's late Henry I. Gruffydd's sons Owain and Cadwaladr work to revive the power of the principality of Gwynedd behind the Snowdonian range.
Denmark's Erik II Emune dies September 18 at age 47 (approximate) after a 3-year reign and is succeeded by his illegitimate 10-year-old son, who will reign until his death in 1157 as Sweyn III (Svend Grathe), but challenges to his legitimacy will soon arise.
The Norwegian pretender Sigurd I Slembi releases the blind Magnus IV from confinement in hopes of installing him as king, having failed to gain support for his own claim to the throne. Many of the Viking chieftains recognize Magnus as the rightful heir to the throne of the late Harald IV, but supporters of Harald's son Inge I Haraldsson and Sigurd II oppose him as civil war wracks the country (see 1139).
The Holy Roman Emperor Lothair II dies at the Tyrolean village of Breitenwang December 4 at age 67 while retreating from Italy after a mutiny among his troops and a breach with Pope Innocent II over the question of who shall control Apulia. His son-in-law Heinrich der Stolze, duke of Bavaria, inherits the duchy of Saxony (but see 1138).
Antioch is forced to pay homage to the Byzantine emperor John II Comnenus, who has conquered Cilician (Little) Armenia.