Lilies & Lions, An Alternative History
La Reine de l’Italien by Jean-Michel Brian (c.1543)
|Reign||3 August 1496 – 30 May 1518|
|Coronation||3 August 1496|
|Predecessor||Isabella of Bruges|
|Successor||Blanche of Provence|
|Born||18 April 1483
Subiaco, Papal States
|Died||24 June 1554 (aged 71)
Parma, Grand-Duchy of Parma
|Burial||Saint Denis Basilica, Kingdom of France|
Lucrece, Queen of Aragon
Arthur, King of France
|Noble family||House of Borgia|
|Father||Pope Alexander VI|
|Mother||Vannozza dei Cattanei|
Lucrezia Borgia (French pronunciation: Lucrece [looˈkrees], Italian pronunciation: [luˈkrɛttsja ˈbɔrdʒa], Valencian: Lucrècia [luˈkrɛsiə]; 18 April 1483 – 24 June 1554) was the queen consort of France and England from 1496 until the death of her husband in 1518.
Lucrezia Borgia was born in Subiaco, near Rome. Her mother was Vannozza dei Cattanei, one of the mistresses of Lucrezia's father, Rodrigo Borgia (Pope Alexander VI).
Lucrezia first met Arthur of Lancaster in May 1492 during his visit for his coronation by Pope Alexander VI. Unbeknownst to her, her father had been making arrangements for her marriage to the Angevin king, providing for a powerful alliance between the Papacy and the Crown of France. It was during this vist that Arthur also met Lucrezia's brother and cardinal at the time, Cesare.
Reportedly, Arthur found Lucrezia well and the two were inseperable for a time. Relations between her brother and the young king also seemed amiable. With an agreement to a rather large dowry, and a promise for more Angevine soldiers in the Balkans, Arthur was married to Lucrezia on xxx, 1492. From Rome, the two travelled first south to Naples where they were hosted by Charles IV and then returned to France, landing in Marseille late in the year.
In 1439, having spent many years as a hostage in Marseille, Lucrezia was freed from imprisonment after a payment from an old friend of her brother, Giovanni Farnese. The now Grand-Duke of Parma welcomed her back to Italy as a queen. Records say that he had her escorted into Parma with celebrators lining the streets, all of the legacy of her brother's ill-fated rule as emperor gone.
The story of Lucrezia and her life has been told in countless forms of media, ranging from books to television to cinema.