Margaret of Austria – Double disaster

So we now know what happened to Philip the Handsome the decade after his mom died in 1482, but whatever happened to his little sister Margaret of Austria?

In 1482 her father Maximilian I had to sign the treaty of Arras to prevent Flanders falling in the hands of the French king. Maximilian I promised that his daughter would marry the dauphin and he gave up most of his Burgundian assets as her dowry. They got engaged when she was 3 which meant that Margaret had to move to the French court where she was educated at the French court and prepared for her role as queen of France. This situation would’ve been rough for any young kid, but keep in mind that poor Margaret had just lost her mom as well and now she was isolated from her dad and brother as well.

Margaret of Austria 4

Margaret of Austria by Pieter van Coninxloo. Note that she wears her dead mom’s jewellery.

Marguerite d'Autriche, duchesse de Savoie, attribué à Pieter van Coninxloo.

Marguerite d’Autriche, duchesse de Savoie, attribué à Pieter van Coninxloo.

Margaret of Austria

Margaret of Austria by Pieter van Coninxloo.

Margaret had developed true affection for Charles VIII, but in 1491, when she was 11, the French changed their minds! Charles VIII decided to marry Anne of Brittany of all people even though she was already married to Margaret’s dad Maximilian I! So he basically dumped her to marry her new stepmom. Needless to say both Margaret and Maximilian I were quite upset at the situation. Maximilian I was able to force the French to sign the Treaty of Senlis where they returned Margaret to them, returned the territories that they had received as her dowry and they agreed to accept Philip as the ruler of Flanders the year after. The reason he could force the French to sign was that the French king needed his hands free because now he was in conflict with the king of Naples as well.

Portrait of Margaret aged ten by Jean Hey, c 1490.

Portrait of Margaret aged ten by Jean Hey, c 1490.

Close-up

Close-up

Bonsoir mes amis! hilde

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One thought on “Margaret of Austria – Double disaster

  1. Pingback: Lady of Mourning Margaret of Austria | hemmahoshilde (@Hilde's home)

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