Paradoxplace Italy Photo Galleries

Overview of Paradoxplace Florence pages

Paradoxplace Artists of the Italian Renaissance

The Early (Renaissance) Medicis in the Glorious 1400s

The Medici Popes Leo X and Clement VII

The Later Medici Grand Dukes of Tuscany and their Women

About Paradoxplace


The Medici Queens of France


Books and a DVD on the Medici


Caterina (Catherine)

1519 - 1589 (70)


1573 - 1642 (69)

Medici 1 - The Glorious 1400s       The Medici Popes       Medici 2 - The Grand Dukes

The Chapel of the Magi

The Medici Family in the Sassetti Chapel

Sandro Botticelli's Painting of the Medici Magi Adoring the Virgin

Painters and Copiers: Bronzino, dell'Altissimo, Sustermans







CATERINA - CATHERINE de'MEDICI (1519 - 1589 (70)



Father-in-Law Francls I - Jean Clouet, Louvre Museum, Paris



Father-in-Law Francls I - Jean Clouet workshop copy, Louvre Museum, Paris



Catherine de'Medici - Anon, Louvre Museum. Paris



Clemente VII marries Catherine and Henri II, Uffizi Storeroom


Protected by Clement VII, Lorenzo and Madeleine's orphaned daughter Caterina (Catherine de Medici 1519 - 1589 (70) - great granddaughter of Il Magnifico), grew up to become a very powerful lady -  Queen Consort of Henry II (1519 - 1547 - 1559 (40)) (son of Flashy Francis I) of France, and mother, after nearly nine years of nothing, of ten children including three weak French Kings (for two of whom she was Queen Regent) - Francis II, Charles IX and Henri III.


Her son Henry III, a transvestite who was the last Valois French King, was murdered by a Dominican friar in August 1589.




Catherine de Medici, Leonie Frieda

 Buy from Amazon USA

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Husband Henri II, Musée Condé, Chantilly (from book above)



Son Henri III - F Quesnel (attrib), Louvre Museum, Paris




Henri II and Catherine in death - formale (above), informale (below) - both in the Basilique St-Denis, Paris


This photo comes from the book "Catherine de Medici" by Leonie Frieda -  Buy from Amazon USA  -  Buy from Amazon UK




The French Wars of Religion  1562 - 1598


Stop start wars of attrition between Catholics and Protestants (aka Calvinists and Huguenots) across France, which can be broken down into 8 sub-wars, numerous battles, ineffective treaties and edicts, and an unbelievable half century of self inflicted misery and suffering for people and church buildings and furnishings.


St-Bartholomew's Day Massacres


Whilst Charles IX was still king, Queen Catherine had engineered the marriage of her daughter (Charles' sister) Marguerite de Valois, to the Protestant Henri III of Navarre.  The wedding took place in Catholic Paris despite the refusal of the Pope to sanction it.  A few days later, on St-Bartholomew's Day (24 August 1472), Admiral Gaspard de Coligny, Huguenot leader and High Admiral of France, was murdered.  This was followed by the targeted killing of dozens of Huguenot nobles still in Parts after the wedding, and the rounding up and massacre of hundreds of other Huguenots in Paris and then throughout France.   The St-Bartholomew's Day and subsequent massacres went down in history as the most barbaric of the barbarisms of the French Religious wars, and many blamed Catherine for being the brains behind it.  However history has been kinder to her and pointed the finger at others.


Protestant Henry III of Navarre became Catholic Henry VI of France, and when the half Medici Marguerite died, he married the full Medici Maria .........


Wikipedia Page on the Wars of Religion






The Bourbons, The History of a Dynasty, J.H.Shennan The Habsburgs, Andrew Wheatcroft








MARIA de'MEDICI 1573 - 1642 (69)



Maria de'Medici as Regent of France aged 38 in 1611 - Frans Pourbus Jnr - Uffizi, Florence



A later Medici daughter - Maria (1573 - 1642 (69)) (daughter of Francesco and Joan) also became Queen Consort of France by becoming the second wife of the first French Bourbon King Henry IV (1553 - 1589 - 1610 (57)) (a k a Henry III, Protestant King of Navarre, who became Henry IV Catholic King of France, and was crowned at Chartres on his way to Paris after famously saying "Paris is well worth a mass"). 


Maria was then Queen Regent for their 9 year old son Louis XIII (1601 - 1610 - 1643 (42)) after Henry was assassinated in 1610.  After getting even with Henry's mistresses and various courtiers, and advised by the improbably named "unscrupulous Italian" Concino Concini and later the emergingly famous Cardinal Richelieu (1585 - 1642 (57)), Maria managed to dissipate the healthy coffers left by Henry and overstay her regency to 1617 -  three years beyond its due date.   


Then son Louis XIII took over, Concini got assassinated, Richelieu went from strength to strength, and the half Habsburg half Medici Maria was exiled, then reconciled with her son, then exiled for good to the Netherlands in 1631 as Bourbon France took on Habsburg Spain. 


Maria's grandson Louis XIV - “Louis the Great” and “the Sun King” (1638 - 1643 - 1715 (77)) - became the longest reigning king in French history.



Maria de'Medici - P P Rubens, Prado Museum, Madrid




Henri III of Navarre, IV of France, the first Bourbon King - Frans Pourbus the Younger, Louvre




Louis XIV in 1701 - by Hyacinthe Rigaud in  the Louvre Museum




The Château de Beauregard is just south of Blois in the Loire Valley.  It contains a gallery of 327 copies of portraits of Kings and famous people from the early 1300s to the mid 1600s, which Maria de'Medici was instrumental in organizing.  The Uffizi in Florence houses the Giovio collection - a similar project of copies of portraits of the famous organized by Duke Cosimo de'Medici I in the 1500s - though Cosimo had the advantage of being able to use the artistic talents of Bronzino, del'Altissimo and Sustermans.






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