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Alphonso Ii

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ALPHONSO II., King of Aragon (1162-1196) was the son of Ray mond Berenger, count of Barcelona, and of Petronilla, niece of Alphonso the Battler, and daughter of Ramiro, surnamed the Monk. He succeeded to the county of Barcelona in 1162 on the death of his father, at the age of I I, and in I 164 his mother re nounced her rights in Aragon in his favour. Though christened Ramon (Raymond), the favourite name of his line, he reigned as Alphonso out of a wish to please his Aragonese subjects, to whom the memory of the Battler was dear. As king of Aragon he took a share in the work of the reconquest, by helping his cousin, Al phonso VIII. of Castile, to conquer Cuenca, and to suppress one Pero Ruiz de Azagra, who was endeavouring to carve out a king dom for himself in the debatable land between Christian and Mo hammedan. But his double position as ruler, both north and south, of the eastern Pyrenees, distracted his policy. In character and interests he was rather Provencal than Spanish, no enemy of the Albigensian heretics, a favourer of the troubadours and himself a poet in the southern French dialect.

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