Maddalena de' Medici (1473–1528)

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the favourite daughter of Clarice Orsini, she was “the eye of her heart”

Maddalena de' Medici (1473–1528) daughter to Lorenzo Medici[1] Born in Florence, she was educated with her siblings to the humanistic cultures by figures such as Agnolo Poliziano.[2] In February 1487 she was engaged to be married to Franceschetto Cybo, son of Pope Innocent VIII.[3] They were married in January 1488, and she brought a dowry of 4000 ducats.[3] This marriage brought closer connections for her family and the Vatican, helping her brother Giovanni get appointed as a Cardinal.[3] She used her influence with her father, her brother Piero, and the Pope to help friends and poorer people get aid and positions within the church and governments.[4]

In 1488 she bought a thermal bath resort in Stigliano.[5] She had the property renovated and turned it into a profitable resort.[5]

Maddalena lived in Rome after the election of her brother Giovanni as Pope Leo X in 1513.[6] Shortly after his election, Pope Leo made her son Innocenzo a Cardinal.[6] Maddalena received Roman citizenship and a pension from her brother in 1515.[6] She worked to get all of her children married to noble families.[6] She continued in her role of patron, negotiating with Pope Leo and her nephew, Lorenzo to get clients protection, funds, and release from prison and exile.[7] She died in Rome, and was buried in St. Peter's Basilica by order of her cousin, Pope Clement VII.[citation needed]


Franceschetto and Maddalena had seven children:

  1. Lucrezia Cybo (1489–1492)
  2. Clarice Cybo (1490–1492) born deformed, died as a child
  3. Innocenzo Cybo (1491–1550), Cardinal
  4. Lorenzo Cybo (1500–1549) Duke of Ferentillo, married Ricciarda Malaspina and founded the Cybo Malaspina family
  5. Caterina Cybo (1501–1557), married the Duke of Camerino
  6. Ippolita Cybo (1503–1503)
  7. Giovanni Battista Cybo (1505–1550)




  • Tomas, Natalie R. (2003). The Medici Women: Gender and Power in Renaissance Florence. Aldershot: Ashgate. ISBN 0754607771.