Isabella of Portugal (24 October 1503 – 1 May 1539) was Holy Roman Empress and Queen of Spain, Germany, Italy, Naples and Sicily and Duchess of Burgundy by her marriage to Emperor Charles V, and regent of Spain during the absences of her husband during 1529-1532, 1535-1536 and 1538-1539.
Isabella was the granddaughter of the Catholic Monarchs, Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon. Throughout her life, many compared her to her grandmother for her character and her determination in politics. A woman of great beauty and intelligence, Isabella was undoubtedly the Spanish soul of Charles V who, because of his travels in Europe, spent little time in Spain due to political affairs abroad. It was thanks to the governorships of Empress Isabella that Spain was able to remain independent of imperial policies.
|Isabella of Portugal|
|Holy Roman Empress|
Queen consort of Italy
|Tenure||24 February 1530 – 1 May 1539|
|Queen of the Romans|
Queen consort of Spain
|Tenure||10 March 1526 – 1 May 1539|
|Born||24 October 1503|
|Died||1 May 1539 (aged 35)|
Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor (m. 1526)
|Father||Manuel I, King of Portugal|
|Mother||Maria of Aragon|
Isabella was the second child and eldest daughter of King Manuel I of Portugal and his second wife Maria of Aragon. She was named after her maternal grandmother and her aunt Isabella, who had been her father's first wife. Isabella was second-in-line to the throne until the birth of her brother Luis in 1506. However, as the oldest daughter of Manuel I of Portugal, she was a rather attractive candidate for marriage.
Isabella spent a happy childhood in the company of her parents and siblings. She was educated under the supervision of her governess Elvira de Mendoza. She would progressively become a beautiful and intelligent young woman, learning the languages of Latin, Spanish and French, the Christian doctrine and the Renaissance classics. In addition to all this, she was very wealthy, possessing a vast and complete library, composed of works of a spiritual nature, destined for prayer and personal enrichment, as well as more mundane works which were of the Infanta's taste, especially on cavalry.
Isabella's mother left in her will, and in a clear message to her husband Manuel, the desire that Isabella should marry only a king or the legitimate son of kings. The ideal candidate for Isabella's husband was her first cousin Charles, the son of Maria's sister Joanna of Castile and Philip the Handsome. A marriage between Charles and Isabella brought a strong alliance between the kingdoms of Spain and Portugal, in accordance with the wishes of their grandparents Isabella and Ferdinand.
An alliance between Portugal and Spain was essential in order to continue the exploration of the oceans without incurring clashes with Castile. It is evident that Castile needed Portugal as an ally. In the constant evolution of Europe, now that Charles was sovereign of multiple kingdoms, especially after his election as Holy Roman Emperor, Castile needed allies. It was necessary that Portugal fall under the orbit of Castile and not of France, which had happened in the War of Castilian Succession. To have Portugal as an ally of Castile meant having their backs covered in the Peninsula and overseas, as Portugal was the only naval power that could question the supremacy of Castile in the Atlantic. It was, moreover, the richest kingdom in the Christendom. Portuguese consent had allowed Castile to cement its position in the Canaries and on territories of the Kingdom of Fez (Melilla and Cazaza) and their support was necessary to fight the infidel in Barbary. In conclusion, the alliance with Portugal was a guarantee of peace and stability.
However, Charles's Flemish advisors, especially William de Croÿ, convinced him to relegate the Portuguese alliance to the background and replace it with an alliance with England. In 1521, Charles became engaged to his other first cousin Mary Tudor, daughter of Henry VIII of England and Catherine of Aragon, who was sixteen years younger than Charles and still a child. The engagement between Charles and Mary sought to undo an alliance between England and France, articulated by the ambitious Cardinal Thomas Wolsey. Many in Portugal took the rejection of Isabella as an offence, but Isabella remained determined and hopeful that she would marry Charles. The choice was that she would marry only Charles or she would enter a convent.
By 1525, Charles was no longer interested in an alliance with England and could wait no longer for Mary Tudor to get older, as he was determined to have legitimate children. The engagement to Mary Tudor was called off, the alliance with England was abandoned and Charles finally sought to marry Isabella. There were many more advantages in his marrying Isabella - she was closer to Charles in age (she was only three years his junior), she was fluent in Spanish and she offered a handsome dowry of 900,000 Portuguese cruzados or Castilian folds, which was more than enough to solve many of Charles's economic and financial problems brought on by the Italian War of 1521-26. The negotiations and marriage contract for an alliance with Portugal were made - Isabella would marry Charles and her brother King John III of Portugal would marry Charles's youngest sister Catherine of Austria.
In January 1526, Isabella travelled to Spain. Upon her arrival, she was met at the Spanish-Portuguese border by the Duke of Calabria, the Archbishop of Toledo and the Duke of Béjar, who escorted her to Seville, where she was to wait for the Emperor. Isabella arrived in Seville in early March and just a week later, Charles arrived. Although their union was originally a purely political arrangement, Charles fell deeply in love with the beautiful Isabella and their wedding took place that very same day just after midnight on 11 March in the Palace of Alcázar of Seville. Despite the Emperor's absences from Spain, the marriage proved to be a happy one as both partners were always devoted and faithful to one another. Following their wedding, the couple spent a long and happy honeymoon at the Alhambra in Granada and records show that during their honeymoon "when [Charles and Isabella] are together, although there are many people around, they do not notice anyone else; they talk and laugh, and nothing else distracts them."
Isabella proved to be a more than competent politician when she served as regent of Spain during her husband's absences between 1529–1532 and 1535–1539. As Empress, Isabella was not brought up just to be a mother and a wife. Inheriting the blood of her maternal grandmother, she was a determined woman, honouring the education given to her in this direction by her mother and father. All the documentation of the time indicates that Isabella was a profound connoisseur of the problems of the peninsular kingdoms, defending intransigently the royal power, the supreme authority of the monarch and the good common to particular interests. At the external level, her sensible actions were decisive in the defence of the coasts of the peninsula and of North Africa, those invested by piracy.
During her time as regent, the Empress traveled a lot around Spain. Due to the very hot weather of Toledo and Seville, she spent the summers in the milder Avila because she suffered several times from malaria. She traveled regularly in the autumn between Toledo, Valladolid, Seville, Barcelona and Majorca. To mitigate the longings and to deal with important matters of the empire, Charles and Isabella wrote to each other regularly. Sometimes, the emperor did not write for months, to the point of worrying the Empress, who in one letter, "scolded" him, saying that at least, she would write "every twenty days." When she heard that her husband was about to return, she sent for a reception with a large party, but during the time she was alone with her children, the ladies and counselors of the court, Isabella lived a very simple life.
Isabella was also an excellent and devoted mother, as she raised and cared for her children and ensured their educations, especially that of her son Philip II of Spain, were providing them with great knowledge and wisdom and even taught them her native language of Portuguese.
In 1539, Isabella became pregnant for the seventh time, but in the third month of her pregnancy, she contracted another fever, which caused antenatal complications and resulted in the Empress giving birth to a stillborn son. She died two weeks later on 1 May 1539 at the age of 35. The Emperor was left so devastated by his wife's death that he could not bring himself to accompany her body to her original burial place in Granada. Instead, he instructed their son Philip to accompany his mother's body with the nobleman Francis Borgia, while Charles locked himself up in a monastery for two months, where he prayed and mourned for his wife alone. Borgia conveyed Isabella's remains to the Royal Chapel of Granada, the burial place of the Catholic Monarchs, and when he saw the effect of death of the beautiful empress, he decided to "never again serve a mortal master". After the death of his own wife in 1541, Borgia retired from court and became a Jesuit priest.
In the aftermath, Charles never recovered from Isabella's death; he never remarried and he dressed in black for the rest of his life. In memory of her, he commissioned several tributes through art and music, beginning in 1540 when he commissioned the Flemish composer Thomas Crecquillon to compose new music in honour of the Empress. Crecquillon composed his Missa Mort m'a privé as a memorial to Isabella, which expresses the Emperor's grief and great wish for a heavenly reunion with his beloved wife. Another musical tribute to Isabella is Carole cur defles Isabellam that was composed in 1545 by the Franco-Flemish composer Nicolas Payen.
In 1543, Charles commissioned his favourite painter Titian to paint posthumous portraits of Isabella by using earlier ones of her as his model. Titian painted several portraits of the Empress, which included his Portrait of The Empress Isabel of Portugal and La Gloria. He also painted a double portrait of Charles and Isabella together, of which there is a copy by Rubens. Charles kept these portraits with him whenever he travelled and after he abdicated in 1555, he retired to the Monastery of Yuste. The portraits by Titian were among those he brought with him and he would spend hours everyday contemplating them, especially the portrait of Isabella.
In 1574, the body of Empress Isabella was transferred by her son Philip II to the Royal Monastery of San Lorenzo de El Escorial, where she was originally interred into a small vault along with her husband directly underneath the altar of the famous Basilica of the Monastery. This was done in accordance with Charles's last will and testament, in which he left a codicil asking for the establishment of a new religious foundation in which he and Isabella would be reburied together side by side, "half-body under the altar and half under the priest's feet". They remained in this vault until 1654 when they were transferred into the Royal Pantheon of Kings by their great-grandson Philip IV, who, in doing so, disrespected his great-grandfather's wishes.
|Philip II of Spain
||21 May 1527 –
13 September 1598
|Only surviving son, successor of his father in the Spanish crown.|
||21 June 1528 –
26 February 1603
|Married her first cousin Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor.|
||22 November 1529 –
13 July 1530
|Died in infancy.|
||29 June 1534||stillborn.|
||26 June 1535 –
7 September 1573
|Married her first cousin João Manuel, Prince of Portugal.|
||19 October 1537 –
20 March 1538
|Died in infancy.|
||21 April 1539||Miscarried and stillborn.|
Due to Philip II being a grandson of Manuel I of Portugal through his mother he was in the line of succession to the throne of Portugal, and claimed it after his uncle's death (Henry, the Cardinal-King, in 1580), thus establishing the Iberian Union.
Isabella was also known as the "Empress of the Carnation", a nickname she gained after her husband introduced the red carnation to Spain as a token of his love for her. While the couple were honeymooning in Granada, Charles ordered the seeds of a Persian flower, that had never been seen before in Spain, to be planted in the gardens of the Alhambra. The seeds eventually grew into the red carnation and the Empress was so delighted by the new flower that Charles ordered thousands more to be planted in her honour. The red carnation later became the floral emblem of Spain.
Isabella of Portugal
Cadet branch of the House of BurgundyBorn: 24 October 1503 Died: 1 May 1539
Title last held byBianca Maria Sforza
| Holy Roman Empress;
Queen consort of Italy
Title next held byMaria of Austria
| Queen of the Romans
with Anne of Bohemia and Hungary 1531–39
Anne of Bohemia and Hungary
Title last held byJoan of Portugal
| Queen consort of Castile and Léon
Title next held byMary I of England
Title last held byGermaine of Foix
| Queen consort of Aragon, Majorca,|
Valencia, Naples and Sicily;
Countess consort of Barcelona
Events from the year 1430 in FranceBeatrice of Coimbra
Infanta Beatrice of Coimbra (1435–1462) was the 5th child of Infante Peter, Duke of Coimbra, and Isabella of Urgell.
After the battle of Alfarrobeira, where her father's army was defeated by the Portuguese royal army, she left the country and took refuge in Burgundy, under her aunt’s protection: Isabella of Portugal was married to Duke Philip III the Good.
In 1453, Beatrice married Adolph of Cleves, Lord of Ravenstein, nephew of the Duke Philip III the Good. They had issue:
Philip of Cleves (1456-1528)
Louise (1457-1458)She died in Bruges of suspected poisoning in 1462.Catherine, Princess of Asturias
Catherine of Castile (Castilian: Catalina de Castilla; 5 October 1422 - 17 September 1424) was suo jure Princess of Asturias and heiress presumptive to the Castilian throne all her life.
Catherine was born on 5 October 1422 in Illescas, Toledo. She was the first child of King John II of Castile and his first wife, Maria of Aragon. Named after her aunt and grandmother, the Duchess of Villena and Catherine of Lancaster, she immediately became heiress presumptive to the throne of Castile upon her birth. The Infanta was formally recognised as successor to the throne of the kingdom and sworn in as Princess of Asturias on 1 January 1423 by the Cortes of Toledo.However, the Princess of Asturias did not live long enough to succeed her father as Queen of Castile. She died in Madrigal de las Altas Torres on 17 September 1424. Her younger sister, Infanta Eleanor, replaced her as heiress and Princess of Asturias. Princess Catherine is buried in Miraflores Charterhouse, along with her father and stepmother, Isabella of Portugal.Isabel of Portugal, Lady of Viseu
Isabella of Portugal (1364–1395) was the natural daughter of King Ferdinand I of Portugal, from an unknown mother.Isabella of Portugal, Duchess of Burgundy
Isabella of Portugal (22 February 1397 – 17 December 1471) was Duchess of Burgundy as the third wife of Duke Philip the Good. Born a Portuguese infanta of the House of Aviz, Isabella was the only surviving daughter of King John I of Portugal and his wife Philippa of Lancaster. Her son by Philip was Charles the Bold, the last Valois Duke of Burgundy. Isabella was the regent of the Burgundian Low Countries during the absence of her spouse in 1432 and in 1441–1443. She served as her husband's representative in negotiations with England regarding trade relations in 1439 and those with the rebellious cities of Holland in 1444.Isabella of Portugal, Queen of Castile
Isabella of Portugal (Isabel in Portuguese and Spanish) (1428 – 15 August 1496) was Queen consort of Castile and León. She was the mother of Queen Isabella I "the Catholic".
She was born as a scion of a collateral branch of the Aviz dynasty that had ruled Portugal since 1385. Her parents were John, Constable of Portugal, the youngest surviving son of John I of Portugal, and his half-niece and wife, Isabella of Barcelos, the daughter of the first Duke of Braganza, who was an illegitimate son of the king. Isabella's father held some lordships, but was not among the forefront of the Portuguese royal house, there being a multitude of powerful dukes ahead of him.Isabella of Portugal (disambiguation)
Isabella, Isabel, Elizabeth or Elisabeth of Portugal may refer to:
Elizabeth of Portugal (1271–1336), saint, queen consort of Portugal
Isabella of Portugal, Lady of Viseu (1364–1395), natural daughter of King Ferdinand I of Portugal
Isabella of Portugal, Duchess of Burgundy (1397–1471), daughter of King John I of Portugal and third wife of Philip the Good
Isabella of Coimbra (1432–1455), queen consort of Portugal
Isabella of Barcelos (1414–1476), also known as Isabella of Braganza, daughter of Afonso I, Duke of Braganza, wife of Infante John, Constable of Portugal
Isabella of Portugal, Queen of Castile (1428-1496)
Isabella of Viseu (1459–1521)
Isabella, Princess of Asturias (1470–1498), queen consort of Portugal
Isabella of Portugal (1503–1539), infanta of Portugal. Holy Roman Empress, German Queen and Queen consort of Spain.
Isabella of Braganza, Duchess of Guimarães (1514–1576), daughter of Jaime I, Duke of Braganza, wife of Infante Edward, 4th Duke of Guimarães
Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia of Spain (1566–1633), infanta of Portugal
Isabel Luísa, Princess of Beira (1668–1690), infanta of Portugal
Maria Isabel of Braganza (1797–1818), infanta of Portugal, consort Queen of Spain
Infanta Isabel Maria of Portugal (1801–1876), infanta of Portugal
Isabel, Princess Imperial of Brazil (1846–1921)
Isabel, Duchess of BraganzaJoan of Portugal
Joana of Portugal (Portuguese pronunciation: [ʒuˈɐnɐ]; English: Joan; 31 March 1439 – June 13, 1475) was Queen consort of Castile as the second wife of King Henry IV of Castile and a Portuguese infanta, the posthumous daughter of King Edward of Portugal and his wife Eleanor of Aragon. She was born in the Quinta do Monte Olivete Villa, Almada six months after the death of her father.La Gloria (Titian)
La Gloria is a painting by Titian, commissioned by Charles V in 1550 or 1551 and completed in 1554. It was first given this title by José Sigüenza in 1601 - it is also known as The Trinity, The Final Judgement or Paradise.
It shows an image from Augustine of Hippo's The City of God describing the glory gained by the blessed and on the right includes Charles himself, with his wife Isabella of Portugal, his son Philip II of Spain, his daughter Joanna of Austria, Mary of Hungary and Eleanor of Austria, all wearing their shrouds. Titian's signature is shown on a scroll held by John the Evangelist. At the top is an image of the Holy Trinity next to the Virgin Mary and Saint John the Baptist. The painting also features King David, Moses and Noah, along with a figure in green identified as Mary Magdalene, the Erythraean Sibyl, Judith, Rachel or the Catholic Church.
Charles took it to the Monastery of Yuste on his retirement there. It was then moved to the Escorial Monastery until 1837, when it was mentioned as among the works in the Prado Museum.Leonor de Castro Mello y Meneses
Leonor Castro de Mello y Meneses (born 1512, died March 27 of 1546, in Gandía) was a Portuguese noble and court official, the IVth Duchess of Gandia,, and the lady-in-waiting and close friend of the Empress regent Isabella of Portugal.List of Castilian consorts
See also List of Castilian monarchsThis is a list of the queens consort of the Kingdom of Castile.
It is, in part, a continuation of the list of Asturian consorts and the list of Leonese consorts.Maria Isabel of Braganza
Maria Isabel of Braganza (Maria Isabel Francisca de Assis Antónia Carlota Joana Josefa Xavier de Paula Micaela Rafaela Isabel Gonzaga; 19 May 1797 – 26 December 1818) was an Infanta of Portugal who became the Queen of Spain as the second wife of Ferdinand VII of Spain.Maria of Austria
Mary or Maria of Austria may refer to:
Mary of Austria (1505-1558), Queen consort of Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia, governor of the Netherlands for her brother, Charles V
Maria of Spain (1528 - 1603), daughter of Charles V and Isabella of Portugal; wife of Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor
Archduchess Maria of Austria (1531–1581), daughter of Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I and Anna of Bohemia and Hungary
Maria Anna of Spain (1606 – 1646), Archduchess of Austria, Infanta of Spain; daughter of Philip III of Spain and Margaret of Austria; wife of Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor
Archduchess Maria of Austria (disambiguation)Miraflores Charterhouse
Miraflores Charterhouse (Spanish: Cartuja de Miraflores) is an Isabelline style charterhouse, or Carthusian monastery of the Order of the Carthusians, built on a hill (known as Miraflores) about three kilometres from the center of the Spanish city of Burgos, autonomous community of Castile and León.
Its origin dates back to 1442, when King John II of Castile donated a hunting lodge outside Burgos, which had been erected by his father Henry III of Castile "the Mourner" in 1401, to the Order of the Carthusians for its conversion into a monastery, thus fulfilling his father's wishes, as stated in his will. A fire in 1452 caused the destruction of the pavilion, and construction of a new building began in 1454. It is this building, which was placed under the patronage of Saint Mary of the Annunciation, which exists today. The construction was commissioned to Juan de Colonia, and was continued after his death by his son, Simón de Colonia, who completed the structure in 1484 at the behest of Queen Isabella I of Castile, surviving daughter of kings John II of Castile and Isabella of Portugal, whose impressive buried are housed in the monastery.
It is a late-Gothic jewel, and its highlights include the church, whose Isabelline style western facade is decorated with the coats-of-arms of its founders. The monastery consists of a single nave with stellar vault and side chapels, and is topped by a polygonal apse.Portrait of Eleonora Gonzaga della Rovere
Portrait of Eleonora Gonzaga is a 1538 painting by Titian, now in the Uffizi in Florence alongside its pair, Portrait of Francesco Maria della Rovere, showing Eleonora's husband. It formed the prototype for some of his later portraits, such as that of Isabella of Portugal.Portrait of Isabella of Portugal
The Portrait of Isabella of Portugal is an oil-on-canvas portrait of Isabella of Portugal, Holy Roman Empress by Titian dating to 1548. It was part of the Spanish royal collection and is now in the Museo del Prado in Madrid.Portrait of Isabella of Portugal (van Eyck)
Portrait of Isabella of Portugal was a betrothal painting by the Early Netherlandish artist Jan van Eyck, one of his earliest works and now lost, known only from copies. It dates to his 1428-29 visit to Portugal on behalf of Philip the Good, when he was sent as part of an embassy to evaluate the then 30-year-old Isabella's suitability as a bride for Philip.Portrait of Isabella of Portugal (van der Weyden)
The Portrait of Isabella of Portugal is an oil-on-oak Early Netherlandish painting of Isabella of Portugal, Duchess of Burgundy, the third wife of Philip the Good. Executed around 1450, the painting had been attributed to Rogier van der Weyden, but is now believed to be from a member of his workshop.Isabella's expression is slightly mocking. She is dressed is an ornately decorated red and gold brocade dress, tightly pulled below at her waist by a green sash, although the artist did not match the brocade pattern on the sleeves. The high butterfly hennin and the rings on her fingers denote nobility. The duchess' fingers are elongated, typical of van der Weyden's style, yet this is believed to be a copy of an original, now-lost portrait van der Weyden portrait.On the upper right is the inscription PERSICA SIBYLLA IA, which suggests it may have been one of a series of portraits depicting sibyls, an identity which contrasts with Isabella's. The inscription and brown faux wood background are later additions.Who owned the painting before 1629 is unknown. It may have belonged to Alexandre d'Arenberg, duke of Croy and prince of Chimay, from the end about 1590 to 1629. It was bought by a dealer in 1883 and later sold to Adolph Carl de Rothschild a few years later; when he died in 1900, his son, Baron Maurice de Rothschild inherited the painting who sold it to John D. Rockefeller in 1927. It stayed in the Rockefeller family until the Getty Center bought it in 1978.War of the Portuguese Succession
The War of the Portuguese Succession, a result of the extinction of the Portuguese royal line after the Battle of Alcácer Quibir and the ensuing Portuguese succession crisis of 1580, was fought from 1580 to 1583 between the two main claimants to the Portuguese throne: António, Prior of Crato, proclaimed in several towns as King of Portugal, and his first cousin Philip II of Spain, who eventually succeeded in claiming the crown, reigning as Philip I of Portugal.
|Ancestors of Isabella of Portugal|
* also an infanta of Spain and an archduchess of Austria, ** also an imperial princess of Brazil, *** also a princess of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Duchess in Saxony, ¤ title removed in 1920 as her parents' marriage was deemed undynastic
* also an infanta of Spain by marriage
** also a princess of Tuscany by marriage
*** also a princess of Modena by marriage
^also an archduchess of Austria in her own right
^^did not have a royal or noble title by birth