Last modified on August 12, 2016, at 06:56


Poitou was a province, or county, in central western France, part of the Duchy of Aquitaine, and containing its capital, Poitiers. Near Poitiers in 732, Charles Martel won the battle that halted the Muslim advance into western Europe; and also nearby, Edward the Black Prince defeated and captured John II of France and Philip the Bold of Burgundy in battle in 1356

The region was in English hands from 1152, when Eleanor of Aquitaine married the future Henry II, to its loss by King John in 1204 (though not formally ceded until 1259). It was held by the English again from 1356 to 1373 during the Hundred Years War. Richard I, "the Lionheart", was brought up there and would have spoken French with a Poitou accent.