Henri was born in the County of Champagne on July 29, 1166. He was the eldest son of the Count of Champagne and his wife, Princess Marie of France. Marie was the daughter of King Louis VII of France by his first wife, Eleanor, Duchess of Aquitaine. His father's sister Adela followed Eleanor as wife of Louis VII and became Queen of France, while his younger brother Theobald married Eleanor of Aquitaine and Louis VII’s other daughter Alix. In short, young Henri was very "well connected" to the French royal house, and through his grandmother to the Plantagenets as well.
With and by his marriage, Henry of Champagne became titular King of Jerusalem. Henry's reign is the subject of a separate entry which will be posted on December 30.