Francis I (French: François Ier; Middle French: Francoys; 12 September 1494 – 31 March 1547) was King of France from 1515 until his death in 1547. He was the son of Charles, Count of Angoulême, and Louise of Savoy. He succeeded his cousin and father-in-law Louis XII, who died without a son. Francis was the ninth king from the House of Valois, the second from the Valois-Orléans branch, and the first from the Valois-Orléans-Angoulême branch.
A prodigious patron of the arts, he initiated the French Renaissance by attracting many Italian artists to work on the Château de Chambord, including Leonardo da Vinci, who brought the Mona Lisa with him, which Francis had acquired. Francis' reign saw important cultural changes with the rise of absolute monarchy in France, the spread of humanism and Protestantism, and the beginning of French exploration of the New World. Jacques Cartier and others claimed lands in the Americas for France and paved the way for the expansion of the first French colonial empire.
For his role in the development and promotion of a standardized French language, he became known as le Père et Restaurateur des Lettres (the "Father and Restorer of Letters"). He was also known as François du Grand Nez ("Francis of the Large Nose"), the Grand Colas, and the Roi-Chevalier (the "Knight-King") for his personal involvement in the wars against his great rival Emperor Charles V, who was also King of Spain.
Following the policy of his predecessors, Francis continued the Italian Wars. The succession of Charles V to the Burgundian Netherlands, the throne of Spain, and his subsequent election as Holy Roman Emperor, meant that France was geographically encircled by the Habsburg monarchy. In his struggle against Imperial hegemony, he sought the support of Henry VIII of England at the Field of the Cloth of Gold. When this was unsuccessful, he formed a Franco-Ottoman alliance with the Muslim sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, a controversial move for a Christian king at the time.
Portrait by Jean Clouet, c. 1530
|King of France|
|Reign||1 January 1515 – 31 March 1547|
|Coronation||25 January 1515|
|Born||12 September 1494|
Château de Cognac, Cognac, France
|Died||31 March 1547 (aged 52)|
Château de Rambouillet, France
|Burial||23 May 1547|
Basilica of St Denis, France
Claude, Duchess of Brittany (m. 1514)
Eleanor of Austria (m. 1530)
|Francis III, Duke of Brittany|
Henry II of France
Madeleine, Queen of Scots
Charles, Duke of Orléans
Margaret, Duchess of Savoy
|Father||Charles, Count of Angoulême|
|Mother||Louise of Savoy|
Francis d'Orléans was born on 12 September 1494 at the Château de Cognac in the town of Cognac, which at that time lay in the province of Saintonge, a part of the Duchy of Aquitaine. Today the town lies in the department of Charente.
Francis was the only son of Charles d'Orléans, Count of Angoulême, and Louise of Savoy and a great-great-grandson of King Charles V of France. His family was not expected to inherit the throne, as his third cousin King Charles VIII was still young at the time of his birth, as was his father's cousin the Duke of Orléans, later King Louis XII. However, Charles VIII died childless in 1498 and was succeeded by Louis XII, who himself had no male heir. The Salic Law prevented women from inheriting the throne. Therefore, the four-year-old Francis (who was already Count of Angoulême after the death of his own father two years earlier) became the heir presumptive to the throne of France in 1498 and was vested with the title of Duke of Valois.
In 1505, Louis XII, having fallen ill, ordered that his daughter Claude and Francis be married immediately, but only through an assembly of nobles were the two engaged. Claude was heir presumptive to the Duchy of Brittany through her mother, Anne of Brittany. Following Anne's death, the marriage took place on 18 May 1514. On 1 January 1515, Louis died, and Francis inherited the throne. He was crowned King of France in the Cathedral of Reims on 25 January 1515, with Claude as his queen consort.
As Francis was receiving his education, ideas emerging from the Italian Renaissance were influential in France. Some of his tutors, such as François Desmoulins de Rochefort (his Latin instructor, who later during the reign of Francis was named Grand Aumônier de France) and Christophe de Longueil (a Brabantian humanist), were attracted by these new ways of thinking and attempted to influence Francis. His academic education had been in arithmetic, geography, grammar, history, reading, spelling, and writing and he became proficient in Hebrew, Italian, Latin and Spanish. Francis came to learn chivalry, dancing, and music and he loved archery, falconry, horseback riding, hunting, jousting, real tennis and wrestling. He ended up reading philosophy and theology and he was fascinated with art, literature, poetry and science. His mother, who had a high admiration for Italian Renaissance art, passed this interest on to her son. Although Francis did not receive a humanist education, he was more influenced by humanism than any previous French king.
By the time he ascended the throne in 1515, the Renaissance had arrived in France, and Francis became an enthusiastic patron of the arts. At the time of his accession, the royal palaces of France were ornamented with only a scattering of great paintings, and not a single sculpture, either ancient or modern. During Francis' reign, the magnificent art collection of the French kings, which can still be seen at the Louvre Palace, was begun.
Francis patronized many great artists of his time, including Andrea del Sarto and Leonardo da Vinci; the latter of whom was persuaded to make France his home during his last years. While da Vinci painted very little during his years in France, he brought with him many of his greatest works, including the Mona Lisa (known in France as La Joconde), and these remained in France after his death. Other major artists to receive Francis' patronage included the goldsmith Benvenuto Cellini and the painters Rosso Fiorentino, Giulio Romano, and Primaticcio, all of whom were employed in decorating Francis' various palaces. He also invited the noted architect Sebastiano Serlio (1475–1554), who enjoyed a fruitful late career in France. Francis also commissioned a number of agents in Italy to procure notable works of art and ship them to France.
Francis was also renowned as a man of letters. When Francis comes up in a conversation among characters in Baldassare Castiglione's Book of the Courtier, it is as the great hope to bring culture to the war-obsessed French nation. Not only did Francis support a number of major writers of the period, he was a poet himself, if not one of particular abilities. Francis worked diligently at improving the royal library. He appointed the great French humanist Guillaume Budé as chief librarian and began to expand the collection. Francis employed agents in Italy to look for rare books and manuscripts, just as he had agents looking for art works. During his reign, the size of the library greatly increased. Not only did he expand the library, there is also evidence that he read the books he bought for it, a much rarer event in the royal annals. Francis set an important precedent by opening his library to scholars from around the world in order to facilitate the diffusion of knowledge.
In 1537, Francis signed the Ordonnance de Montpellier, which decreed that his library be given a copy of every book to be sold in France. Francis' older sister, Marguerite, Queen of Navarre, was also an accomplished writer who produced the classic collection of short stories known as the Heptameron. Francis corresponded with the abbess and philosopher Claude de Bectoz, of whose letters he was so fond that he would carry them around and show them to the ladies of his court. Together with his sister, he visited her in Tarascon.
Francis poured vast amounts of money into new structures. He continued the work of his predecessors on the Château d'Amboise and also started renovations on the Château de Blois. Early in his reign, he began construction of the magnificent Château de Chambord, inspired by the architectural styles of the Italian renaissance, and perhaps even designed by Leonardo da Vinci. Francis rebuilt the Château du Louvre, transforming it from a medieval fortress into a building of Renaissance splendour. He financed the building of a new City Hall (the Hôtel de Ville) for Paris in order to have control over the building's design. He constructed the Château de Madrid in the Bois de Boulogne and rebuilt the Château de St-Germain-en-Laye. The largest of Francis' building projects was the reconstruction and expansion of the Château de Fontainebleau, which quickly became his favourite place of residence, as well as the residence of his official mistress, Anne, Duchess of Étampes. Each of Francis' projects was luxuriously decorated both inside and out. Fontainebleau, for instance, had a gushing fountain in its courtyard where quantities of wine were mixed with the water.
Although the Italian Wars (1494–1559) came to dominate the reign of Francis I, the wars were not the sole focus of his policies. Francis merely continued the incessant wars that his predecessors had started and that his successors on the throne of France would drag on after Francis' death. Indeed, the Italian Wars had begun when Milan sent a plea to King Charles VIII of France for protection against the aggressive actions of the King of Naples. Militarily and diplomatically, Francis' reign was a mixed bag of success and failure. Francis tried and failed to become Holy Roman Emperor at the Imperial election of 1519. However, there were also temporary victories, such as in the portion of the Italian Wars called the War of the League of Cambrai (1508–1516) and, more specifically, to the final stage of that war, which history refers to simply as "Francis' First Italian War" (1515–1516), when Francis routed the combined forces of the Papal States and the Old Swiss Confederacy at Marignano on 13–15 September 1515. This victory at Marignano allowed Francis to capture the Italian city-state of Milan. Later, in November 1521, during the Four Years' War (1521–1526) and facing the advancing Imperial forces of the Holy Roman Empire and open revolt within Milan, Francis was forced to abandon Milan, thus, cancelling the triumph at Marignano.
Much of the military activity of Francis's reign was focused on his sworn enemy, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V. Francis and Charles maintained an intense personal rivalry. Charles, in fact, brashly challenged Francis to single combat multiple times. In addition to the Holy Roman Empire, Charles personally ruled Spain, Austria, and a number of smaller possessions neighboring France. He was thus a constant threat to Francis' kingdom.
Francis attempted to arrange an alliance with Henry VIII of England at the famous meeting at the Field of Cloth of Gold on 7 June 1520, but despite a lavish fortnight of diplomacy they failed to reach an agreement.
Francis suffered his most devastating defeat at the Battle of Pavia on 24 February 1525, during part of the continuing Italian Wars known as the Four Years' War. Francis was actually captured by the forces of Charles V after Cesare Hercolani was able to injure his horse, leading Francis to be captured by the Basque Juan de Urbieta and the Spaniards Diego Dávila and Alonso Pita da Veiga. For this reason, Hercolani was named "Victor of the battle of Pavia". Zuppa alla Pavese was supposedly invented on the spot to feed the captive king right after the battle. There are allegations that Francis would have been killed by mistake by one of Charles soldiers had Pedro de Valdivia —the future conqueror of Chile— not intervened.
Francis I was held captive in Madrid. In a letter to his mother he wrote, "Of all things, nothing remains to me but honour and life, which is safe." This line has come down in history famously as "All is lost save honour." In the Treaty of Madrid, signed on 14 January 1526, Francis was forced to make major concessions to Charles V before he was freed on 17 March 1526. An ultimatum from Ottoman Sultan Suleiman to Charles V also played an important role in his release. Among the concessions that Francis I yielded to Charles V were the surrender of any claims to Naples and Milan in Italy. Francis I was also forced to recognise the independence of the duchy of Burgundy, which had become part of France since the death of Charles, Duke of Burgundy on 5 January 1477, during the reign of Louis XI.
Furthermore, France was required to give up all claims to Flanders and the Artois. Additionally, Francis I was allowed to return to France in exchange for his two sons, Francis and Henry, but once he was free he argued that his agreement with Charles was made under duress. He also claimed that the agreement was void because his sons were taken hostage with the implication that his word alone could not be trusted. Thus he firmly repudiated it.
Francis persevered in his hatred of Charles V and desire to control Italy by conquest. The repudiation of the Treaty of Madrid led to the War of the League of Cognac of 1526-30. By the mid-1520s, Pope Clement VII wished to liberate Italy from foreign domination, especially that of Charles V, so to that end he negotiated with Venice to form the League of Cognac. Francis I willingly joined this anti-Imperial league on 22 May 1526.
After the league failed, Francis concluded a secret alliance with the Landgrave of Hesse on 27 January 1534. This was directed against Charles V on the pretext of assisting the Duke of Wurttemberg to regain his traditional seat, from which Charles had removed him in 1519. Francis also obtained the help of the Ottoman Empire and renewed the contest in Italy in the Italian War of 1536–1538 after the death of Francesco II Sforza, the ruler of Milan. This round of fighting, which had little result, was ended by the Truce of Nice. The agreement collapsed, however, which led to Francis' final attempt on Italy in the Italian War of 1542–1546. This time Francis managed to hold off the forces of Charles V and England's Henry VIII. Charles V was forced to sign the Treaty of Crépy because of his financial difficulties and conflicts with the Schmalkaldic League.
Francis had been much aggrieved at the papal bull Aeterni regis: in June 1481 Portuguese rule over Africa and the Indies was confirmed by Pope Sixtus IV. Thirteen years later, on 7 June 1494, Portugal and the Crown of Castille signed the Treaty of Tordesillas under which the newly discovered lands would be divided between the two signatories. All this prompted King Francis to declare, "The sun shines for me as it does for others. I would very much like to see the clause of Adam’s will by which I should be denied my share of the world."
In order to counterbalance the power of the Habsburg Empire under Charles V, especially its control of large parts of the New World through the Crown of Spain, Francis I endeavoured to develop contacts with the New World and Asia. Fleets were sent to the Americas and the Far East, and close contacts were developed with the Ottoman Empire permitting the development of French Mediterranean trade as well as the establishment of a strategic military alliance.
The port city now known as Le Havre was founded in 1517 during the early years of Francis' reign. The construction of a new port was urgently needed in order to replace the ancient harbours of Honfleur and Harfleur, whose utility had decreased due to silting. Le Havre was originally named Franciscopolis after the King who founded it, but this name did not survive into later reigns.
In 1524, Francis assisted the citizens of Lyon in financing the expedition of Giovanni da Verrazzano to North America. On this expedition, Verrazzano visited the present site of New York City, naming it New Angoulême, and claimed Newfoundland for the French crown. Verrazzano's letter to Francis of 8 July 1524 is known as the Cèllere Codex.
In 1534, Francis sent Jacques Cartier to explore the St. Lawrence River in Quebec to find "certain islands and lands where it is said there must be great quantities of gold and other riches". In 1541, Francis sent Jean-François de Roberval to settle Canada and to provide for the spread of "the Holy Catholic faith."
French trade with East Asia was initiated during the reign of Francis I with the help of shipowner Jean Ango. In July 1527, a French Norman trading ship from the city of Rouen is recorded by the Portuguese João de Barros as having arrived in the Indian city of Diu. In 1529, Jean Parmentier, on board the Sacre and the Pensée, reached Sumatra. Upon its return, the expedition triggered the development of the Dieppe maps, influencing the work of Dieppe cartographers such as Jean Rotz.
Under the reign of Francis I, France became the first country in Europe to establish formal relations with the Ottoman Empire and to set up instruction in the Arabic language under the guidance of Guillaume Postel at the Collège de France.
In a watershed moment in European diplomacy, Francis came to an understanding with the Ottoman Empire that developed into a Franco-Ottoman alliance. The alliance has been called "the first nonideological diplomatic alliance of its kind between a Christian and non-Christian empire". It did, however, cause quite a scandal in the Christian world and was designated "the impious alliance", or "the sacrilegious union of the [French] Lily and the [Ottoman] Crescent." Nevertheless, it endured for many years, since it served the objective interests of both parties. The two powers colluded against Charles V, and in 1543 they even combined for a joint naval assault in the Siege of Nice.
In 1533, Francis I sent colonel Pierre de Piton as ambassador to Morocco, initiating official France-Morocco relations. In a letter to Francis I dated 13 August 1533, the Wattassid ruler of Fez, Ahmed ben Mohammed, welcomed French overtures and granted freedom of shipping and protection of French traders.
Francis took several steps to eradicate the monopoly of Latin as the language of knowledge. In 1530, he declared French the national language of the kingdom, and that same year opened the Collège des trois langues, or Collège Royal, following the recommendation of humanist Guillaume Budé. Students at the Collège could study Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic, then Arabic under Guillaume Postel beginning in 1539.
In 1539, in his castle in Villers-Cotterêts, Francis signed the important edict known as Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts, which, among other reforms, made French the administrative language of the kingdom as a replacement for Latin. This same edict required priests to register births, marriages, and deaths, and to establish a registry office in every parish. This initiated the first records of vital statistics with filiations available in Europe.
Divisions in Christianity in Western Europe during Francis' reign created lasting international rifts. Martin Luther's preaching and writing sparked the Protestant Reformation, which spread through much of Europe, including France.
Initially, Francis was relatively tolerant of the new movement, under the influence of his beloved sister Marguerite de Navarre, who was genuinely attracted by Luther's theology. He even considered it politically useful, as it caused many German princes to turn against his enemy Charles V. In 1533 Francis even dared to suggest to Pope Clement VII that he convene a church council in which Catholic and Protestant rulers would have an equal vote in order to settle their differences - an offer rejected by both the Pope and Charles V. Beginning in 1523, however, Francis burned several heretics at the Place Maubert.
Francis' attitude towards Protestantism changed for the worse following the "Affair of the Placards", on the night of 17 October 1534, in which notices appeared on the streets of Paris and other major cities denouncing the Catholic mass. The most fervent Catholics were outraged by the notice's allegations. Francis himself came to view the movement as a plot against him and began to persecute its followers. Protestants were jailed and executed. In some areas whole villages were destroyed. In Paris, after 1540, Francis had heretics such as Etienne Dolet tortured and burned. Printing was censored and leading Protestant reformers such as John Calvin were forced into exile. The persecutions soon numbered thousands of dead and tens of thousands of homeless.
Persecutions against Protestants were codified in the Edict of Fontainebleau (1540) issued by Francis. Major acts of violence continued, as when Francis ordered the execution of one of the historical pre-Lutheran groups, the Waldensians, at the Massacre of Mérindol in 1545.
Francis died at the Château de Rambouillet on 31 March 1547, on his son and successor's 28th birthday. It is said that "he died complaining about the weight of a crown that he had first perceived as a gift from God". He was interred with his first wife, Claude, Duchess of Brittany, in Saint Denis Basilica. He was succeeded by his son, Henry II.
Francis' tomb and that of his wife and mother, along with the tombs of other French kings and members of the royal family, were desecrated on 20 October 1793 during the Reign of Terror at the height of the French Revolution.
His long nose earned him the nickname François du Grand Nez ("Francis of the Big Nose"), he was also colloquially known as the "Grand Colas" or "Bonhomme Colas". For his personal involvement in battles, he was known as le Roi-Chevalier ("the Knight-King") or the le Roi-Guerrier ("the Warrior-King").
On 7 July 1530, Francis I married his second wife Eleanor of Austria, a sister of the Emperor Charles V. The couple had no children. During his reign, Francis kept two official mistresses at court. The first was Françoise de Foix, Countess of Châteaubriant. In 1526, she was replaced by the blonde-haired, cultured Anne de Pisseleu d'Heilly, Duchess of Étampes who, with the death of Queen Claude two years earlier, wielded far more political power at court than her predecessor had done. Another of his earlier mistresses was allegedly Mary Boleyn, mistress of King Henry VIII and sister of Henry's future wife, Anne Boleyn.
The amorous exploits of Francis inspired the 1832 play by Fanny Kemble, Francis the First, and the 1832 play by Victor Hugo, Le Roi s'amuse ("The King's Amusement"), which featured the jester Triboulet, the inspiration for the 1851 opera Rigoletto by Giuseppe Verdi.
Francis was first played in a George Méliès movie by an unknown actor in 1907, and has also been played by Claude Garry (1910), Aimé Simon-Girard (1937), Sacha Guitry (1937), Gérard Oury (1953), Jean Marais (1955), Pedro Armendáriz (1956), Claude Titre (1962), Bernard Pierre Donnadieu (1990). Timothy West (1998) and Emmanuel Leconte (2007- 2010).
Francis receives a mention in a minor story in Laurence Sterne's novel Tristram Shandy. The narrator claims that the king, wishing to win the favour of Switzerland, offers to make the country the godmother of his son. When, however, their choice of name conflicts, he declares war.
He is also mentioned in Jean de la Brète's novel Reine – Mon oncle et mon curé, where the main character Reine de Lavalle idolises him after reading his biography, much to the dismay of the local priest.
He often receives mentions in novels on the lives of either of the Boleyn sisters – Mary Boleyn (d. 1543) and her sister, Queen Anne Boleyn (executed 1536), both of whom were for a time educated at his court. Mary had, according to several accounts, been Francis' one-time mistress and Anne had been a favourite of his sister: the novels The Lady in the Tower, The Other Boleyn Girl, The Last Boleyn, Dear Heart, How Like You This? and Mademoiselle Boleyn feature Francis in their story. He appears in Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall about Henry VIII's minister Thomas Cromwell and is often referred to in its sequel, Bring Up the Bodies.
Francis is portrayed in Diane Haeger's novel Courtesan about Diane de Poitiers and Henri II.
Samuel Shellabarger's novel The King's Cavalier describes Francis the man, and the cultural and political circumstances of his reign, in some detail.
Francis I (played by Timothy West) and Francis's son Henry II (played by Dougray Scott) are central figures in the 1998 movie Ever After, a retelling of the Cinderella story. The plot includes Leonardo da Vinci (played by Patrick Godfrey) arriving at Francis's court with the Mona Lisa.
Francis I of France
Cadet branch of the Capetian dynastyBorn: 12 September 1494 Died: 31 March 1547
| King of France
1 January 1515 – 31 March 1547
as sole duchess
| Duke of Brittany
18 May 1514 – 1 January 1515
as sole duchess
| Duke of Milan
Francis II Sforza
Francis II Sforza
| Duke of Milan|
Merged in the crown
Title last held byLouis
| Duke of Valois
1498 – 1 January 1515
Merged in the crown
Title next held byMargaret
| Count of Angoulême
1 January 1496 – 1 January 1515
Merged in the crown
Title next held byLouise
Events from the year 1516 in France1547 in France
Events from the year 1547 in FranceAbbé
Abbé (from Latin abbas, in turn from Greek ἀββᾶς, abbas, from Aramaic abba, a title of honour, literally meaning "the father, my father", emphatic state of abh, "father") is the French word for abbot. It is the title for lower-ranking Catholic clergymen in France.A concordat between Pope Leo X and King Francis I of France (1516), gave the kings of France the right to nominate 255 commendatory abbots (abbés commendataires) for almost all French abbeys, who received income from a monastery without needing to render service.From the mid-16th century, the title abbé has been used in France for all young clergymen with or without consecration. Their clothes consisted of a black or dark violet robes with a small collar; they were tonsured.Since such abbés only rarely commanded an abbey, they often worked in upper-class families as tutors, spiritual directors, etc.; some (such as Gabriel Bonnot de Mably) became writers.Abu al-Abbas Ahmad ibn Muhammad
Abu al-Abbas Ahmad ibn Muhammad, also Sultan Ahmad, or Ahmed el Outassi, was a Sultan of the Moroccan Wattasid dynasty. He ruled from 1526 to 1545, and again between 1547 and 1549.In 1532, Ahmad ibn Muhammad sent a letter to Francis I of France through trader Hémon de Molon, encouraging the French king to develop trade relations. In 1533, Francis I of France sent as ambassador to Ahmad ibn Muhammad, in the person of colonel Pierre de Piton. In a letter to Francis I dated August 13, 1533, Ahmad ibn Muhammad welcomed French overtures and granted freedom of shipping and protection of French traders.In 1545, Sultan Ahmad was taken prisoner by his southern rivals the Saadians. His successor, Ali Abu Hassun, regent for Ahmad's young son Nasir al-Qasiri, decided to pledge allegiance to the Ottomans in order to obtain their support.France actually started to send ships to Morocco in 1555, under the rule of Henry II, son of Francis I.He married Sayyida al Hurra.Anne de Pisseleu d'Heilly
Anna Jeanne de Pisseleu d'Heilly, Duchess of Étampes (1508 – 1580), was a chief mistress of Francis I of France.
She was a daughter of Adrien de Pisseleu, seigneur d'Heilly, a nobleman of Picardy, who, with the rise of his daughter at court, was made seigneur of Meudon, Master of waters and forests of Île de France, of Champagne and of Brie.Antonio de Leyva, Duke of Terranova
Antonio de Leyva, Duke of Terranova, Prince of Ascoli (1480–1536) was a Spanish general during the Italian Wars. During the Italian War of 1521, he commanded Pavia during the siege of the city by Francis I of France, and took part in the Battle of Pavia in 1525. After the death of Fernando d'Ávalos, Marquis of Pescara, he held further commands in Italy during the War of the League of Cognac and afterwards, finally dying shortly after attempting an invasion of Provence.Battle of Landriano
The Battle of Landriano took place on 21 June 1529, between the French army under Francis de Bourbon, Comte de St. Pol and the Imperial–Spanish army commanded by Don Antonio de Leyva, Duke of Terranova in the context of the War of the League of Cognac. The French army was destroyed and marked the temporary end of the ambitions of Francis I of France to vie for control of northern Italy with Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.Belgioioso, Lombardy
Belgioioso or Belgiojoso (Italian pronunciation: [beldʒoˈjoːzo; -oːso]; Lombard: Belgios [belˈdʒuːs], Belgiojos [ˌbɛldʒuˈjuːs]) is a town and comune in the Province of Pavia, region of Lombardy (northern Italy), with a population of 6,233 (2017).It is 12 km east of the city of Pavia, between the Olona River and the Po River. Due to its geographical location, Belgioioso has become one of the southern suburbs of the city of Milan.
Belgioioso is noted for its medieval castle, the seat of the Belgiojoso family. Francis I of France was held there after the Battle of Pavia.Claude of France
Claude of France (13 October 1499 – 20 July 1524) was a queen consort of France by marriage to Francis I. She was also ruling Duchess of Brittany from 1514. She was a daughter of the French king Louis XII and Anne of Brittany.Eleanor of Austria
Eleanor of Austria (15 November 1498 – 25 February 1558), also called Eleanor of Castile, was born an Archduchess of Austria and Infanta of Castile from the House of Habsburg, and subsequently became Queen consort of Portugal (1518–1521) and of France (1530–1547). She also held the Duchy of Touraine (1547–1558) in dower. She is called "Leonor" in Spanish and Portuguese and "Eléonore" or "Aliénor" in French.Field of the Cloth of Gold
The Field of the Cloth of Gold (French: Camp du Drap d'Or) was a site in Balinghem – equidistant between Ardres in France and Guînes in the then-English Pale of Calais – that hosted a tournament field as part of a summit from 7 to 24 June 1520, between King Henry VIII of England and King Francis I of France.
The summit was arranged to increase the bond of friendship between the two kings following the Anglo-French treaty of 1514. These two monarchs would meet again in 1532 to arrange Francis's assistance in pressuring Pope Clement VII to pronounce Henry's first marriage as illegitimate. Under the guidance of English Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, the chief nations of Europe sought to outlaw war forever among Christian nations.
The site is indicated by a commemorative plaque on the D231 road (Route de Marquise) at 50.8523°N 1.9229°E / 50.8523; 1.9229. Though now in France, Balinghem was at the time regarded as part of England. This caused some tensions between the English and French, as the latter preferred a location closer to the border, but topographical considerations proved the decisive factor.Franco-Hungarian alliance in 1528
A Franco-Hungarian alliance was formed in October 1528 between Francis I of France and John Zápolya, king of Hungary.Françoise d'Alençon
Françoise d'Alençon (1490 – September 14, 1550) was the eldest daughter of René of Alençon and Margaret of Lorraine, and the younger sister and despoiled heiress of Charles IV, Duke of Alençon.
The sister and heiress of Charles IV of Alençon, she was despoiled of her heritage by her sister-in-law Marguerite of Angoulême, sister of King Francis I of France.
Her son Antoine, however, went on to marry Jeanne III of Navarre, born of the second marriage of Marguerite with Henry II of Navarre. The grandson of Françoise and Marguerite, Henry de Bourbon, would become King of France and Navarre.Françoise de Foix
Françoise de Foix, Comtesse de Châteaubriant (c. 1495 – 16 October 1537) was a chief mistress of Francis I of France.French Renaissance
The French Renaissance was the cultural and artistic movement in France between the 15th and early 17th centuries. The period is associated with the pan-European Renaissance, a word first used by the French historian Jules Michelet to define the artistic and cultural "rebirth" of Europe.
Notable developments during the French Renaissance include the spread of humanism, early exploration of the "New World" (as New France by Giovanni da Verrazzano and Jacques Cartier); the development of new techniques and artistic forms in the fields of printing, architecture, painting, sculpture, music, the sciences and literature; and the elaboration of new codes of sociability, etiquette and discourse.
The French Renaissance traditionally extends from (roughly) the French invasion of Italy in 1494 during the reign of Charles VIII until the death of Henry IV in 1610. This chronology notwithstanding, certain artistic, technological or literary developments associated with the Renaissance arrived in France earlier (for example, by way of the Burgundy court or the Papal court in Avignon); however, the Black Death of the 14th century and the Hundred Years' War kept France economically and politically weak until the late 15th century.
The reigns of Francis I of France (from 1515 to 1547) and his son Henry II (from 1547 to 1559) are generally considered the apex of the French Renaissance.Mérindol massacre
For the French doctor, see Antoine Mérindol (1570-1624)
The Mérindol massacre took place in 1545, when Francis I of France ordered the Waldensians of the village of Mérindol to be punished for dissident religious activities. Provençal and Papal soldiers killed hundreds or even thousands of Waldensian villagers.Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts
The Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts (French: Ordonnance de Villers-Cotterêts) is an extensive piece of reform legislation signed into law by Francis I of France on August 10, 1539 in the city of Villers-Cotterêts and the oldest French legislation still used partly by French courts.
Largely the work of Chancellor Guillaume Poyet, the legislative edict had 192 articles and dealt with a number of government, judicial and ecclesiastical matters (ordonnance générale en matière de police et de justice).The Holy Family of Francis I (Raphael)
The Holy Family is a 1518 painting of the Holy Family (Jesus, Mary and Joseph), Saint Elisabeth, an infant John the Baptist and two angels. It is signed by Raphael, but most of the work was delegated to his workshop assistants. It was commissioned by Pope Leo X as a gift to Claude, wife of Francis I of France, hence its name. It is now in the Louvre.The Incredulity of Saint Thomas (Salviati)
The Incredulity of Saint Thomas is a 1543–1547 painting by Francesco Salviati. It was commissioned for the église Notre-Dame-de-Confort in Lyon by Thomas II de Gadagne (also known as Tomaso Guadagni), a Florentine counselor to Francis I of France. It is now held in the Louvre Museum and measures 275 cm by 234 cm. It is signed FRANCESCO SALVIATO FLO. OPUS (S.B.D.) and the apostle shown in three-quarter-profile is a self-portrait of Salviati.Its choice of subject reflects an anti-Medici political viewpoint shared by commissioner and artist. The work proved popular from its arrival in Lyon onwards and was copied by several artists in several media, including an engraving by Master CC. Even after art history began to neglect art produced in and for Lyon, the painting was one of few such works still to be mentioned - for example, it appears in Giorgio Vasari's Lives.
|Ancestors of Francis I of France|
|House of Nantes|
|House of Rennes|
|House of Cornouaille|
|House of Penthièvre|
|House of Plantagenet|
|House of Thouars|
|House of Dreux|
|War of the Breton Succession|
|Montfort of Brittany|
|House of Valois|
Recognised as Francia from 481 to 843, as West Francia from 843 to 987 and as France since 987
Styled President of the Republic since 1871, except from 1940 to 1944 (Chief of State) and 1944 to 1947 (Chairman of the Provisional Government)
Detailed monarch family tree | Simplified monarch family tree | List of Presidents of France
Robertians and Bosonids (751–987)
|House of Capet (987–1328)|
|House of Valois (1328–1589)|
|House of Lancaster (1422–1453)|
|House of Bourbon (1589–1792)|
|First Republic (1792–1804)|
|First Empire (1804–1815)|
|Bourbon Restoration (1815–1830)|
|July Monarchy (1830–1848)|
|Second Republic (1848–1852)|
|Second Empire (1852–1870)|
|Government of National Defense (1870–1871)|
|Third Republic (1871–1940)|
|Vichy France (1940–1944)|
|Provisional Government (1944–1947)|
|Fourth Republic (1947–1958)|
|Fifth Republic (1958–present)|
Debatable or disputed rulers are in italics. Acting heads of state are denoted by an asterisk. Millerand held the presidency in an acting capacity before being fully elected.