Past Life Eleanor of Aquitaine

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Noted for: One of the most powerful and influential figures of the Middle Ages.

Country: France

Personality: High spirited and determined.

Eleanor of Aquitaine was born into a Europe dominated by feudalism. In the twelfth century there was no concept of nationhood or patriotism and subjects owed loyalty to their ruler, rather than the state. It was rare for a woman to exercise political power. Eleanor of Aquitaine was among the few notable exceptions.

Eleanor was heiress to one of the richest domains in mediaeval Europe. She was taught to ride at an early age and in later life she enjoyed hawking. Eleanor tried to re-create the ambience in which she had grown up, commissioning plays in Latin and encouraging troubadours and jongleurs to visit and entertain her household and guests.

The court in which Eleanor grew up was sophisticated and highly civilised and enjoyed a standard of living luxurious for its time. She had inherited many of the traits of her forebears and was energetic, intelligent, sophisticated, headstrong and perhaps lacking in self-discipline.