Philippe IV, the Fair (French Philippe le Bel) (1268 - November 29, 1314) was King of France from 1285 to 1314. A member of the Capetian Dynasty, he was born at the Royal Palace of Fontainebleau, Seine-et-Marne the son of King Philippe III and Isabelle d'Aragon. He was called Philippe the Fair because of his handsome appearance. As king, he was determined to strengthen the monarchy at any cost.
King Philippe IV arrested Jews so he could seize their goods to accommodate his spendthrift lifestyle. When he also levied taxes on the French clergy of one half their annual income, he caused an uproar within the Roman Catholic Church and the papacy. Still, Philippe emerged victorious with a French archbishop made Pope Clement V and the official papal palace was built in Avignon in southern France.
On October 13, 1307, what may have been all the Knights Templar in France were simultaneously arrested by agents of Philippe the Fair, to be later tortured into admitting heresy in the Order. A modern historical view is that Philippe, who seized the treasury and broke up the monastic banking system, simply sought to control it for himself.
Philippe IV’s rule signaled the decline of the papacy’s power from its near complete authority. He died in a hunting accident and is buried in Saint Denis Basilica.
The children of Philippe IV and Jeanne of Navarre were:
He was succeeded by his son, Louis X.
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