Philip the Handsome finally in France

Philip the Handsome wanted to leave Spain ever since the death of van Buijsleden, his advisor, 23rd of August 1502. But his in-laws wanted to keep him and Joanna in Spain. They keep Joanna in Spain with the excuse that she is pregnant and therefor shouldn’t travel, but they probably hope that the child will stay in Spain afterwards. They can’t hinder Philip from going back to Flanders, but they could certainly delay it and that’s exactly what they did. First Ferdinand summoned him to come to Madrid. Father-in-law Ferdinand tries to argue that Philip should stay in Spain for his wife and for safety reasons. Spain and Italy are fighting each other and Ferdinand doesn’t want Philip to travel in France during these circumstances unless King Louis XII would send enough soldiers to guarantee the safety of Philip and his entourage. Louis XII sent immediately three princes to Valencia but it was apparently still a lot of negotiations about the safety details because it takes untill the 10th of March 1503, before Philip finally sets foot in France. 7 months of preparations for the trip. The 10th of March Philip arrives in Avignon and the 14th of March he is spotted in Orange. They travel about 10 km a day. In Pont-Saint-Esprit Philip gets word that Joanna gave birth to their son on 10th of March. He traveled to Valencia, but there was an epidemic so they moved on to Lyon to visit King Louis XII and Queen Anne of Brittany, the parents of his first-born son’s fiancee.

philip the handsome 8

Bonsoir, mes amis! Hilde



5 thoughts on “Philip the Handsome finally in France

    • Hi Rosza! Congratz on the great reviews for your book 🙂 It is really hard to find any pictures from the couple around that time, because portraits etc were often reserved for special occasions like births, weddings, coronations and funerals. Joanna and Philip had been away from home for over a year now and hadn’t seen eachother in months by this time. Painting royal portraits was something that was generally done by a court painter or a painter workshop. But I added a Spanish illustration that shows Philip the Handsome or Felipe El Hermoso as they called him to show what he looked like. Clearly grown up now not the child/teenager with the angelic face the way they had painted him in Austria and Flanders. I wonder if it is true that he was not as pretty any more as he once was or if this is, because they Spanish weren’t all that fond of Philip and decided to portray him less flattering than they could have?


  1. Hilde – He’s still pretty handsome in this painting, although his compressed mouth makes him look a bit imperious and not very forgiving. Compared with paintings of Anne of Brittany’s two royal husbands Louis XII and Charles VIII of France, Philip is indeed “El Hermoso.” Take off the “S” in first and 4th lines of above post, so that you say “Philip” and not “Philips.” Posting this on facebook now, my followers will be interested.


    • You’re right about his looks, but I still think that the Spanish we’re messing a bit with him :). I hope that I managed to correct his name everywhere now. My brain messes with me when I read about Philip in Dutch where we call him “Philips de Schone”. Hope your readers will be forgiving :).


  2. Pingback: Ferdinand born on grandpa’s b-day | hemmahoshilde (@Hilde's home)

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