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He is styled as Count by the grace of God of  in 963 and already count of Bidgau and Methingau through inheritance since 959. In 974, he became count of Mons, and Hainault jointly with Arnold, Count of Valenciennes, after the fall of Reginar IV. Charles, Duke of Lower Lorraine, was a supporter of Reginar and defeated Godfrey and Arnold at Mons in 976, where the former was captured.
After his release, he was at the side of the Emperor Otto II fighting Lothair of France at Verdun in 985, but he was again taken captive, along with his son Frederick, and held several years. He was released in 987 by Hugh Capet, whose political ally was Adalberon, Godfrey's brother, having crowned Hugh and Godfrey being an enemy of Charles of Lower Lorraine, Hugh's Carolingian rival.
In 989, he was made prisoner a third time by Herbert III of Vermandois. He was liberated before 995, when he appears at the synod of Mousson. In 998, he lost his Hainault portion (the county of Mons) to Reginar IV.
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