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It may also be telling that the cathedral in Poitiers is dedicated to St Peter, who seems to have loomed large in the lives of the Dukes of Aquitaine and Petronella is the feminine form of the name.Or she could have been baptised Petronella and called Aelith.The Pope, on receiving a complaint from Theobald of Champagne on his disparaged sister’s/niece’s/cousin’s behalf, immediately reversed the annulment and put Ralph and Petronella under interdict.

Which brings us back to Aelith and Petronella as separate individuals rather than the same person.I suspect it has been taken from a novel rather than being a provable fact.As everyone knows, while Wikipedia is a good starting point, it’s never, ever to be trusted.Then again it could be Petronella Countess of Leicester, we don’t know.In the pipe roll of 1158, there is a reference to a payment for the passage of the Queen’s sister (it doesn’t name her and the wording might refer to the King’s sister – in which case it would be an illegitimate one, very likely Emma who was one of Eleanor’s ladies until circa 1173).

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