Philip The Bold (le Hardi), duke of Burgundy, son of John the Good of France, born Jan. 15, 1342, died at the chateau of Hall, in Hainaut, April 27, 1404. The duchy having reverted to the crown of France on the death of the last member of the first ducal house in 1361, Philip, chosen by King John from among the princes on account of the courage which had gained him his surname at Poitiers, was invested with the title by letters of Sept. 6, 1363; but he did not actually assume the government and the title till 1364, his brother Charles V., who ascended the throne during that year, having confirmed the grant. On June 19, 1369, he married at Ghent Margaret of Flanders, widow of his predecessor and heiress of Flanders, Artois, Bethel, and Nevers, as well as of enormous wealth. He displayed much wisdom in administration, and although he took command of the king's army sent to oppose the English duke of Lancaster in Normandy,' and fought against the English in 1372, 1374, and 1377, he kept aloof from the family and party conflicts of the time until the death of Charles (1380), when he became involved with his elder brother, the duke of Anjou, in the contest for the regency during the minority of Charles VI. Among the confused events of the times, whatever mastery remained to the divided and menaced government was finally left in the hands of Philip; but even after 1382, when the duke of Anjou went to Naples, his rule was interrupted by constant dissensions and insurrections.
When in 1388 Charles declared his assumption of the throne, Philip was compelled to yield to his nephew the duke of Orleans; but on the king's becoming insane in 1392 he again placed himself at the head of affairs despite the opposition of Orleans, and held it without interruption till 140.2. In 1396, finding his own possessions suffering from the war with England, he concluded an armistice with that kingdom. In 1402 the duke of Orleans seized the government during Philip's absence, but he was at once compelled to yield. For the remaining two years of Philip's life his regency continued without important interference.