Battle of Noville

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Battle of Noville
date August 1, 1194
place Noville-sur-Mehaigne / Belgium
output Victory of the House of Flanders
Parties to the conflict
Blason for Hainaut ancien.svg Blason Comte-de-Flandre.svg
House of Flanders
Limburg New Arms.svg
Lower Lorraine coalition

Count Balduin V./VIII. of Hainaut-Flanders

Duke Heinrich III. from Limburg

Troop strength
160 knights
200 noble servants
10,000 infantrymen
400 knights
20,000 infantrymen



The Battle of Noville , sometimes called the Battle of Neuville in older literature , was a military clash in medieval Belgium . It took place on August 1, 1194 near Namur , near Noville-sur-Mehaigne (municipality of Éghezée / Province of Namur ). Count Balduin V./VIII. von Hainaut-Flanders triumphed over a coalition of Lower Lorraine imperial princes under Duke Heinrich III. from Limburg .


Within a few years, Count Baldwin V of Hainaut had risen from a rather subordinate feudal lord of the former Lower Lorraine on the border of the Holy Roman Empire to France to one of the most powerful princes of this region, by successively in 1188 his uncle Heinrich the Blind , Count of Luxembourg who took over the county of Namur and took over the great county of Flanders in 1191 . This increase in power by Baldwin V brought the other princes of Lower Lorraine together into a community of interests, which was largely led by Henry the Blind and the two dukes Heinrich III. of Limburg and Henry I of Leuven-Brabant .

The political tensions finally erupted in 1193 after the bishopric election in Liège , in which the Duke of Limburg prevailed over one of his sons in a way contrary to canonical suffrage. Since the diocese of Liège was the secular liege lord of Hainaut, Count Baldwin V naturally joined the opponents of this election, which supported Pope Coelestin III. won. The conflict was ultimately decided militarily when the coalition with an army led by the Duke of Limburg invaded the Namurois and was put to battle there on August 1, 1194 near Noville-sur-Mehaigne by Count Balduin V.

The battle and consequences

as battle participants are named:

House of Flanders Lower Lorraine coalition
Blason for Hainaut ancien.svgCount Balduin V./VIII. of Hainaut-Flanders Baldwin of Flanders Robert of Wavrin, Seneschal of Flanders Nicholas IV of Rumigny
Blason Comte-de-Flandre.svg
Blason Colombey les Belles 54.svg
Blason Rumigny, svg
Limburg New Arms.svgDuke Heinrich III. von Limburg
Limburg New Arms.svg Heinrich (IV.) von Limburg Walram von Limburg Simon von Limburg , Bishop of Liege Count Friedrich III. by Vianden Count Albert II of Dagsburg Gerhard von Jülich
Limburg New Arms.svg
Limburg New Arms.svg
Armoiries de Brandenbourg.svg
Blason de la ville de Dabo (Moselle) .svg
Blason Nord-Pas-De-Calais.svg

There are no detailed reports on the course of the battle. All that is written is that the Count of Hainaut-Flanders won a complete victory despite being numerically inferior, while many on the Lorraine side met their deaths. The Duke of Limburg and his eldest son fell into captivity, from which they later had to buy themselves out, while the other high knights fled.

With his victory, Baldwin V von Hainaut was able to preserve the territorial conglomerate of his family that he had put together in the years before. His aged uncle, Henry the Blind, on the other hand, had to endure the irretrievable loss of his father's inheritance, the County of Namur, and when he died in 1196 was only able to bequeath Luxembourg to his young heiress, Ermesinde . The battle also decided the investiture dispute in the diocese of Liège, in which the Limburg bishop had to renounce the church office there in 1195.


The primary source for the Battle of Noville is the Chronicle of Hainaut by the clergyman Gislebert von Mons , who was a follower of the Count of Hainaut.


  1. Gerhard von Jülich († approx. 1199) was a younger brother of Count Wilhelm II von Jülich .
  2. Cf. Gislebert von Mons, Chronicon Hanoniense, in: MGH SS 21, p. 587f.