Lucrezia Borgia, Duchess of Ferrara (1480 - 1519) MP

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Birthplace: Subiaco, Lazio, Italy
Death: Died in Ferrara, Emilia-Romagna, Italy
Occupation: Contessa di Pesaro
Managed by: Flemming Allan Funch
Last Updated:

About Lucrezia Borgia, Duchess of Ferrara

Lucrezia BORGIA (April 18, 1480-1519 June 24) was the daughter of Rodrigo BORGIA, the powerful Renaissance Valencian who later became Pope Alexander VI, and Vannozza dei CATTANEI. Her brothers included Cesare BORGIA, Giovanni BORGIA, and Gioffre BORGIA.

Lucrezia's family later came to epitomize the ruthless Machiavellian politics and sexual corruption alleged to be characteristic of the Renaissance Papacy. Lucrezia was cast as a femme fatale, a role she has been portrayed in many artworks, novels and films.

NO authentic portrait of Lucrezia is known, though several paintings, such as Bartolomeo VENEZIANO's fanciful portrait (see illustration) have been said to depict her. She is described as having heavy blonde hair which fell past her knees, a beautiful complexion, hazel eyes which constantly changed colour, a full, high bosom and a natural grace which made her appear to "walk on air" ; these were the physical attributes that were highly appreciated in Italy during that period.

Not enough is known about the historical Lucrezia to be certain that the stories about her active involvement in her father's and brother's crimes are true. Her father and/or brother certainly arranged several marriages for her, to important or powerful men, in order to advance their own political ambitions. Lucrezia was married to Giovanni SFORZA (Lord of Pesaro), Alfonso of ARAGON (Duke of Bisceglie), and Alfonso d'ESTE (Prince of Ferrara). Tradition has it that Alfonso of Aragon was an illegitimate son of the King of Naples and that Cesare may have had him murdered after his political value waned...

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Marriages

[edit] First marriage: Giovanni Sforza

Lucrezia Borgia was born at Subiaco, near Rome. By the time she was thirteen, she had been betrothed twice, but her father called off both engagements.

After Rodrigo became Pope Alexander VI, he had Lucrezia marry Giovanni Sforza to establish an alliance with that powerful Milanese family. The wedding was a scandalous event but was not much more extravagant than many other Renaissance celebrations.

Before long, the Borgia family no longer needed the Sforzas, and the presence of Giovanni Sforza in the papal court was superfluous. The Pope needed new, more advantageous political alliances, so he may have covertly ordered the execution of Giovanni. The generally accepted version is that Lucrezia was informed of this by her brother Cesare, and she warned her husband, who fled Rome.

Possibly Pope Alexander VI never made such an order, and it was a plot on the part of Cesare and Lucrezia to drive her husband away. Regardless, Alexander and Cesare were pleased with the chance to arrange another advantageous marriage for Lucrezia. But before that could occur, they needed to get rid of Giovanni Sforza.

Alexander asked Giovanni's uncle, Cardinal Ascanio Sforza, to persuade Giovanni to agree to a divorce. Giovanni refused and accused Lucrezia of paternal and fraternal incest. Since the marriage had supposedly not been consummated, the Pope said that the marriage was not valid, and offered Giovanni Lucrezia's dowry to agree. The Sforza family threatened to withdraw their protection of Giovanni if he refused Alexander's offer. Having no choice, Giovanni Sforza signed confessions of impotence and documents of annulment before witnesses.

[edit] Affair with Perotto

There has been speculation that during the prolonged process of the annulment, Lucrezia consummated a relationship with someone, probably Alexander's messenger Perotto. The result was that she was actually pregnant when her marriage was annulled for non-consummation, and this is one of the facts her detractors have cited to support their derogatory view of her character. The child, named Giovanni but known to historians as the Roman Infante, was born in secret (1498) before Lucrezia's marriage to Alfonso of Aragon.

Some believe the child was her brother Cesare's, but that Perotto, due to his fondness for Lucrezia, claimed that it was his. During her pregnancy, she stayed away from Rome at a convent, so no one would know, and Perotto would bring her messages from her father in Rome. According to this theory, Lucrezia was worried that if news of her pregnancy reached the citizens of Rome, they would surely know it was Cesare's child. Cesare, at the time, was a Cardinal of the Holy Church; if he had been sharing an illicit sexual relationship with his sister during her marriage to Giovanni, it would have to be concealed from everyone, especially their father (the Pope).

In 1501, two papal bulls were issued concerning the child, Giovanni Borgia. In the first, he was recognized as Cesare's child from an affair before his marriage. The second, contradictory, bull recognized him as the son of Alexander VI. Lucrezia's name is not mentioned in either, and rumours that she was his mother have never been proven. The second bull was kept secret for many years, and Giovanni was assumed to be Cesare's son. This is supported by the fact that in 1502, he became Duke of Camerino, one of Cesare's recent conquests, hence the natural inheritance of the Duke of Romagna's oldest son. However, some time after Alexander's death, Giovanni went to stay with Lucrezia in Ferrara, where he was accepted as her half-brother.

Second marriage: Alfonso of Aragon (Duke of Bisceglie)

At his first meeting with Alfonso, before the marriage took place, Cesare was very impressed by his good looks and nature. This soon changed to jealousy and hatred. It was said that Cesare did not like Alfonso because Lucrezia was very happy with him and had, since her marriage to him, stopped giving Cesare as much attention. Also, Cesare himself had a bout of syphilis and many scars remained on his face, even after recovery. This made him very conscious of his appearance, and so he started wearing masks and dressing in black. His condition is said to have made him hate Alfonso of Aragon all the more, and once when the Prince was visiting them in Rome, Cesare's men had attacked him during the night. To retaliate, Alfonso's men shot arrows at Cesare one day while he strolled in the garden. This infuriated Cesare, and he had his servant(s) strangle Alfonso while in the recovery room. Lucrezia and Alfonso had only one child, Rodrigo, who predeceased his mother in August 1512 at the age of twelve.

While the reason for Alfonso's murder could have been jealousy, it did have a political background. Just like Lucrezia's first marriage, the second one soon became a useless alliance and a reason for embarrassment for the Pope and his son. Cesare had just allied himself with King Louis XII of France, who claimed the duchy of Naples, which was in the hands of Alfonso's family at the time. Whatever the reasons for his murder, Lucrezia was genuinely fond of her husband and broken–hearted upon his death.

[edit] Third marriage: Alfonso d'Este (Duke of Ferrara)

After the death of her second husband, Lucrezia's father, Pope Alexander VI, wanted to arrange a third marriage. She then married Alfonso d'Este, Duke of Ferrara. She gave her third husband a number of children and proved to be a respectable and accomplished Renaissance duchess, effectively rising above her questionable past and surviving the fall of the Borgias following her father's death.

Neither partner was faithful: Lucrezia enjoyed a long relationship with her bisexual brother-in-law, Francesco II Gonzaga, Marquis of Mantua [10][11] as well as a love affair with the poet Pietro Bembo. Francesco's wife was the cultured intellectual Isabella d'Este, the sister of Alfonso, to whom Lucrezia had made overtures of friendship to no avail. The affair between Francesco and Lucrezia was passionate, more sexual than sentimental as can be attested in the fevered love letters the pair wrote one another. The affair ended when Francesco contracted syphilis and had to perforce end sexual relations with Lucrezia.[12]

Lucrezia met the famed French soldier, the Chevalier Bayard while the latter was co-commanding the French allied garrison of Ferrara in 1510. According to his biographer, the Chevalier became a great admirer of Lucrezia's; considering her a "pearl amoung women". How much she returned his admiration is unknown.

Lucrezia Borgia died in Ferrara on 24 June 1519 from complications after giving birth to her eighth child. She was buried in the convent of Corpus Domini.[13]

On 15 October 1816, the Romantic poet Lord Byron visited the Ambrosian Library of Milan. He was delighted by the letters between Borgia and Bembo ("The prettiest love letters in the world"[14][15]) and claimed to have managed to steal a lock of her hair ("the prettiest and fairest imaginable."[15]) held on display[16][17][18].

[edit] Children

Lucrezia was mother to seven or eight known children:

Giovanni Borgia, "infans Romanus" ("Child of Rome", c. 1498–1548). The child's paternity was acknowledged by Perotto, but Alexander and Cesare have also been identified as the father. It is also possible that this child (identified in later life as Lucrezia's half-brother) was the result of a liaison between Rodrigo Borgia (Pope Alexander VI, Lucrezia's father) and an unknown mistress, as averred in a Papal Bull, and was not Lucrezia's child.

Rodrigo Borgia of Aragon (November 1, 1499 — August, 1512). Son by Alfonso of Aragon.

Ercole II d'Este, Duke of Ferrara (April 5, 1508 — October 3, 1559).

Ippolito II d'Este (August 25, 1509 — December 1, 1572). Archbishop of Milan and later Cardinal.

Alessandro d'Este (1514–1516).

Leonora d'Este (July 3, 1515 — July 15, 1575). A nun.

Francesco d'Este, Marchese di Massalombarda (November 1, 1516 — February 2, 1578).

Isabella Maria d'Este (Born and deceased on June 14, 1519). Complications at birth caused the death of Lucrezia ten days later.

At least one biographer (Maria Bellonci) claims that Lucrezia gave birth to three more children, one by Alfonso of Aragon and two by Alfonso d'Este, who did not survive infancy. She is also thought to have had at least four miscarriages.

Lucrezia is the ancestress of many notable people, including American Civil War general P.G.T. Beauregard[19] and actress Brooke Shields.[20] She is a collateral relative of most of the royal families of modern Europe including that of the United Kingdom.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucrezia_Borgia

The Borgias or Borjas were an Italian noble family of Spanish origin remembered today for their corrupt rule of the Papacy during the Renaissance. They are in fact thought to be "history's first criminal family", and a forerunner to the Italian Mafia.[1] The patriarch of the family, Rodrigo Borgia (1431-1503), "became a bishop, cardinal and vice-chancellor of the church."[2] He was later elected Pope, taking the name Alexander VI and kept that position for at least eleven years. Other members of the Borgia family were Lucrezia Borgia and Cesare Borgia, daughter and son of Rodrigo Borgia, respectively. Among the many accusations against the Borgia family, some are of incest, adultery, murder, and scandal.

Second marriage: Alfonso of Aragon (Duke of Bisceglie)

At his first meeting with Alfonso, before the marriage took place, Cesare was very impressed by his good looks and nature. This soon changed to jealousy and hatred. It was said that Cesare did not like Alfonso because Lucrezia was very happy with him and had, since her marriage to him, stopped giving Cesare as much attention. Also, Cesare himself had a bout of syphilis and many scars remained on his face, even after recovery. This made him very conscious of his appearance, and so he started wearing masks and dressing in black. His condition is said to have made him hate Alfonso of Aragon all the more, and once when the Prince was visiting them in Rome, Cesare's men had attacked him during the night. To retaliate, Alfonso's men shot arrows at Cesare one day while he strolled in the garden. This infuriated Cesare, and he had his servant(s) strangle Alfonso while in the recovery room. Lucrezia and Alfonso had only one child, Rodrigo, who predeceased his mother in August 1512 at the age of twelve.

While the reason for Alfonso's murder could have been jealousy, it did have a political background. Just like Lucrezia's first marriage, the second one soon became a useless alliance and a reason for embarrassment for the Pope and his son. Cesare had just allied himself with King Louis XII of France, who claimed the duchy of Naples, which was in the hands of Alfonso's family at the time. Whatever the reasons for his murder, Lucrezia was genuinely fond of her husband and broken–hearted upon his death.

[edit] Third marriage: Alfonso d'Este (Duke of Ferrara)

After the death of her second husband, Lucrezia's father, Pope Alexander VI, wanted to arrange a third marriage. She then married Alfonso d'Este, Duke of Ferrara. She gave her third husband a number of children and proved to be a respectable and accomplished Renaissance duchess, effectively rising above her questionable past and surviving the fall of the Borgias following her father's death.

Neither partner was faithful: Lucrezia enjoyed a long relationship with her bisexual brother-in-law, Francesco II Gonzaga, Marquis of Mantua [10][11] as well as a love affair with the poet Pietro Bembo. Francesco's wife was the cultured intellectual Isabella d'Este, the sister of Alfonso, to whom Lucrezia had made overtures of friendship to no avail. The affair between Francesco and Lucrezia was passionate, more sexual than sentimental as can be attested in the fevered love letters the pair wrote one another. The affair ended when Francesco contracted syphilis and had to perforce end sexual relations with Lucrezia.[12]

Lucrezia met the famed French soldier, the Chevalier Bayard while the latter was co-commanding the French allied garrison of Ferrara in 1510. According to his biographer, the Chevalier became a great admirer of Lucrezia's; considering her a "pearl amoung women". How much she returned his admiration is unknown.

Lucrezia Borgia died in Ferrara on 24 June 1519 from complications after giving birth to her eighth child. She was buried in the convent of Corpus Domini.[13]

On 15 October 1816, the Romantic poet Lord Byron visited the Ambrosian Library of Milan. He was delighted by the letters between Borgia and Bembo ("The prettiest love letters in the world"[14][15]) and claimed to have managed to steal a lock of her hair ("the prettiest and fairest imaginable."[15]) held on display[16][17][18].

[edit] Children

Lucrezia was mother to seven or eight known children:

-1. Giovanni Borgia, "infans Romanus" ("Child of Rome", c. 1498–1548). The child's paternity was acknowledged by Perotto, but Alexander and Cesare have also been identified as the father. It is also possible that this child (identified in later life as Lucrezia's half-brother) was the result of a liaison between Rodrigo Borgia (Pope Alexander VI, Lucrezia's father) and an unknown mistress, as averred in a Papal Bull, and was not Lucrezia's child.

-2. Rodrigo Borgia of Aragon (November 1, 1499 — August, 1512). Son by Alfonso of Aragon.

-3. Ercole II d'Este, Duke of Ferrara (April 5, 1508 — October 3, 1559).

-4. Ippolito II d'Este (August 25, 1509 — December 1, 1572). Archbishop of Milan and later Cardinal.

-5. Alessandro d'Este (1514–1516).

-6. Leonora d'Este (July 3, 1515 — July 15, 1575). A nun.

-7. Francesco d'Este, Marchese di Massalombarda (November 1, 1516 — February 2, 1578).

-8. Isabella Maria d'Este (Born and deceased on June 14, 1519). Complications at birth caused the death of Lucrezia ten days later.

At least one biographer (Maria Bellonci) claims that Lucrezia gave birth to three more children, one by Alfonso of Aragon and two by Alfonso d'Este, who did not survive infancy. She is also thought to have had at least four miscarriages.

Lucrezia is the ancestress of many notable people, including American Civil War general P.G.T. Beauregard[19] and actress Brooke Shields.[20] She is a collateral relative of most of the royal families of modern Europe including that of the United Kingdom.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borgia

--------------------

Lucrezia Borgia (1)

F, #331583, b. 18 April 1480, d. 24 June 1519

Last Edited=19 Jan 2009

Lucrezia Borgia was born on 18 April 1480. (1) 

She was the daughter of Rodrigo Borgia and Vannozza dei Cattanei. (1)

She married, thirdly, Alfonso I d'Este, Duca di Ferrara, son of Ercole I d'Este, Duca di Ferrara. (1)

She married, secondly, Alfonso de Aragón, son of Alfonso II, King of Naples and Truzia Gazzela. (1)

She married, firstly, Giovanni Sforza, son of Costanzo I Sforza, on 12 June 1492. (1)

She died on 24 June 1519 at age 39 at Ferrara, Italy, from birth complications. (1)

    Her marriage to Giovanni Sforza was annulled. (1)

Child of Lucrezia Borgia

-1. Giovanni Borgia (1) b. 1498, d. 1548

Child of Lucrezia Borgia and Alfonso de Aragón

-1. Rodrigo Borgia de Aragón (1) b. 1 Nov 1499, d. Aug 1512

Children of Lucrezia Borgia and Alfonso I d'Este, Duca di Ferrara

-1. Ercole II d'Este, Duca di Ferrara+1 b. 5 Apr 1508, d. 3 Oct 1559

-2. Ippolito II d'Este1 b. 25 Aug 1509, d. 1 Dec 1572

-3. Alessandro d'Este (1) b. 1514, d. 1516

-4. Leonora d'Este1 b. 3 Jul 1515, d. 15 Jul 1575

-5. Francesco d'Este, Marchese di Massalombarda (1) b. 1 Nov 1516, d. 2 Feb 1578

-6. Isabella Maria d'Este (1) b. 14 Jun 1519, d. 14 Jun 1519

Forrás / Source:

http://thepeerage.com/p33159.htm#i331583

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The other two photo:

Bartolomeo Veneto: Flóra (korábban Lucrezia Borgia arcképének tartották)

See:

http://hu.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucrezia_Borgia

Translation:

Bartolomeo Veneto: Flóra (it was considered Lucrezia Borgia portrait earlier) -------------------- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucrezia_Borgia

_____________

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=7855976&ref=wvr

view all 17

Lucrezia Borgia, duchessa di Ferrara, Modena e Reggio's Timeline

1480
April 18, 1480
Subiaco, Lazio, Italy
1493
1493
Age 12
1498
July 21, 1498
Age 18
Rome?
1498
Age 17
1499
November 1, 1499
Age 19
1502
February 2, 1502
Age 21
Rome
September 5, 1502
Age 22
1505
September 19, 1505
Age 25
1508
April 5, 1508
Age 27
1509
1509
Age 28
Este - son of Alfonso I