1159 (The People's Chronology)
An English army led by Henry II's chancellor Thomas à Becket, 41, invades Toulouse to assert the rights of Henry's wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine, but Louis VII drives the English off (see 1152; 1160).
Poland's exiled duke Wladyslaw Wygnaniec dies in exile at Altenburg May 30 at age 53 (approximate), having been driven out by his brothers in 1146.
The Japanese emperor Nijo is dethroned and imprisoned along with his father, the former emperor Goshirakawa, by Noboyori Fujiwara and Yoshitomo Minamoto, who stage a palace revolution (the Heiji Disturbance) while Kiyomori Taira is away from Kyoto visiting the Kumano shrine (see 1158). Kiyomori returns at news of the coup, kills Fujiwara, reinstates the emperor Nijo, and becomes the power behind the throne (see 1160).
Pope Adrian IV (Nicholas Breakspear) dies September 1 after a 5-year reign and is succeeded by Siena-born Rolando Cardinal Bandinelli, who will reign until 1181 as Alexander III.
Nonfiction: Policratus by John of Salisbury is the first medieval attempt to formulate an extended and systematic treatment of political philosophy. A protégé of Theobald, archbishop of Canterbury, John denounces Henry II for exacting funds from the Church to support his invasion of Toulouse and presents the first explicit defense of tyrannicide.