I finally had the time to write another post and now it is a year ago I started my blog :).
After all Margaret of Austria went through in Spain losing her husband and only daughter shortly after eachother it’s not surprising that she wasn’t that interested in marrying anyone just a couple of years after, but her brother and father really wanted her to marry Philibert II of Savoy. Philibert II was someone she grew up with at the French court when she was the fiance of Charles VIII. His nickname was the handsome and he was sportive as well. All this probably helped to convince Margaret to marry him.
The reason her dad and brother wanted to marry him was to end the Italian Wars between the king of French and Maximilian.
Philibert II ruled Savoy which lay between the French domains and Maximilian’s land. Philibert II was left alone because he was related to the French king so Savoy was therefor perfect for the Habsburgers to use as a buffer. Philibert II on the other hand could use the dowry and the political influence and experience that Margaret brought to the table. The proposal came with 150 soldiers and the marriage contract was signed in Brussels september 1501.
Margaret got a huge dowry from her brother Philips and Philibert promised to pay her a handsome annuity fee if she would survive him.
After this she travelled than to Genova to marry Philibert II. November 1501 she was married by proxy in a simple church ceremony in Italy where Rene of Savoy, Philibert’s half-brother, stood in for his brother. Soon after she did meet Philibert II and they celebrated the marriage with feasts, receptions and dancing at a convent near Geneva. It seems like Philibert II and Margaret really fell in love with eachother which is nice, because she hadn’t had much luck in love so far.
Maybe the reason it worked out well for them was that they were close in age, Margaret was only a couple of months older, and because Philibert was a widower and could therefor relate to Margaret’s loss. Philibert had been married to his cousin Yolanda who had died only 3 years in to the marriage and left him with the titles to the duchy of Savoy and made him king of Cyprus, Jerusalem and Armenia.
It turned out that Philibert II wasn’t very interested in politics and that he left it up to his half-brother Rene, who was a bastard son of his father to rule Savoy. This was unacceptable for Margaret. She expelled Rene from the court and she even undid her husband’s decision to legitimize Rene which meant that he was once again a bastard and thus unable to rule inherit the throne in the future. She started to rule Savoy herself which wasn’t too bad for Savoy to be fair, because Margaret was a capable ruler and she knew all the right people in Europe to help her get Savoy back on track.
This may have been one of the happiest periods in Margaret’s life. Unfortunately it wouldn’t last very long.
Bonsoir mes amis, Hilde