Bona of Savoy
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|Bona of Savoy|
|A portrait of Bona of Savoy|
|Tenure||22 July 1468 -1480|
|Spouse||Galeazzo Maria Sforza|
|Gian Galeazzo Sforza|
Bianca Maria Sforza
|House||House of Savoy|
House of Sforza
|Father||Louis, Duke of Savoy|
|Mother||Anne of Cyprus|
|Died||1 December 1503 (aged 53–54)|
Family and marriage
In 1464, she was to have been betrothed to Edward IV of England, until his secret marriage to Elizabeth Woodville was revealed. Bona married Galeazzo Maria Sforza on 9 May 1468. An alliance between the Sforza and the royal house of France had been rumoured from as early as 1460: and "[i]n June 1464 Bona of Savoy was officially offered to Galeazzo by letters from the King of France and the Duke of Savoy."
Galeazzo and Bona had three children:
- Gian Galeazzo Sforza (20 June 1469- 21 October 1494), married his first cousin Isabella of Naples (2 October 1470- 11 February 1524), by whom he had issue, including Bona Sforza, Queen consort of King Sigismund I of Poland, who in her turn had six children.
- Bianca Maria Sforza (5 April 1472- 31 December 1510), in January 1474, married firstly Philibert I, Duke of Savoy; on 16 March 1494, married secondly, Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I, she had no issue by her two husbands.
- Anna Sforza (21 July 1476- 2 December 1497), married Alfonso I d'Este, Duke of Ferrara. Anna died while giving birth to her only child, a son, who died shortly after his baptism. Alfonso's second wife was Lucrezia Borgia.
Bona of Savoy was considered to have been one of the most powerful women of the period. Her husband Galeazzo Maria Sforza was assassinated, on 26 December 1476, at the age of 32 by three young noblemen on the porch of the cathedral church of San Stefano in Milan. Galeazzo was succeeded after his 10-year reign by his 7-year-old son Gian Galeazzo Sforza (1469–1494) under the regency of Bona. But dissensions soon arose between the regent and her brother-in-law, Ludovico Maria Sforza, nicknamed "Il Moro" (the Moor).
In the first encounter Bona and her chief counsellor, Cicco Simonetta, were victorious, and Ludovico and his brothers were made to leave the city. In order to obtain his re-admission, Ludovico, took advantage of the rivalry between Tassino (the favourite of Bona) and Simonetta. The fall and execution of Simonetta followed. From 1479 the real government of Milan lay in the hands of Ludovico, whose power was further secured in 1480, when he seized his nephew Gian, deprived him of the duchy and assumed control. Consequently, Bona was obliged to leave Milan and Ludovico was left to rule unchallenged.
Bona of Savoy commissioned the Sforza Book of Hours manuscript, which was painted in about 1490 by a famous court artist, Giovan Pietro Birago. She used the book, which contained devotional texts and is considered to be one of the most outstanding treasures of the Italian Renaissance.
|Ancestors of Bona of Savoy|
- ^ The Official Castello Sforzesco Website
- ^ Treasure united with the page it lost 500 years ago - This Britain, UK - Independent.co.uk
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