Duchy of Savoy

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Duchy of Savoy

Ducatus Sabaudiae(lat)
Ducato di Savoia(it)
Duché de Savoie(fr)
Ducato di Savouè(frp)
Ducà 'd Savòja(pms)
14161792
18141847
Savoie flag.svg
Flag of Savoy
Arms of Dukes of Savoy.svg
Coat of arms of Savoy (16th c.)
Motto:  FERT
Lands of Victor Amadeus II, Duke of Savoy.PNG
States of the Duke of Savoy around 1700;
Savoy proper is in the northwest.
StatusDuchy
Capital Chambéry (1416–1562)
Turin (1562–1847)
Common languagesItalian, Piedmontese, French, Latin, Arpitan, Occitan
Religion
Roman Catholicism
GovernmentDuchy
Duke  
 1416–1440
Amadeus VIII
 1831–1847
Charles Albert
Historical era Modern Era
  County of Savoy raised
    to a duchy
 
1416
 Occupied by France
1536–59, 1630,
1690–96, 1703–13
  Acquired Sicily and parts
    of the Duchy of Milan
 
11 April 1713
 Acquired the kingdom
    of Sardinia
in exchange
    for Sicily
 
1720
 Occupied by
     Revolutionary France
 
1792–1814
 
29 November 1847
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Savoie flag.svg County of Savoy
First French Republic Flag of France.svg
Kingdom of Sardinia Civil Flag and Civil Ensign of the Kingdom of Sardinia (1816-1848).svg

From 1416 to 1860, the Duchy of Savoy (Italian : Ducato di Savoia, French : Duché de Savoie) was a state in Western Europe. It was created when Sigismund, King of the Romans, raised the County of Savoy into a duchy for Amadeus VIII. The duchy was an Imperial fief [1] [2] [3] [4] , subject of the Holy Roman Empire with a vote in the Imperial Diet. From the 16th century, Savoy belonged to the Upper Rhenish Circle. Throughout its history, it was ruled by the House of Savoy and formed a part of the larger Savoyard state.

Italian language Romance language

Italian is a Romance language of the Indo-European language family. Italian, together with Sardinian, is by most measures the closest language to Vulgar Latin of the Romance languages. Italian is an official language in Italy, Switzerland, San Marino and Vatican City. It has an official minority status in western Istria. It formerly had official status in Albania, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro (Kotor) and Greece, and is generally understood in Corsica and Savoie. It also used to be an official language in the former Italian East Africa and Italian North Africa, where it still plays a significant role in various sectors. Italian is also spoken by large expatriate communities in the Americas and Australia. Italian is included under the languages covered by the European Charter for Regional or Minority languages in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in Romania, although Italian is neither a co-official nor a regional or a traditional language in these countries, where Italians do not represent a historical minority. In the case of Romania, Italian is listed by the Government along 10 other languages which supposedly receive a "general protection", but not between those which should be granted an "advanced or enhanced" one. Many speakers of Italian are native bilinguals of both Italian and other regional languages.

French language Romance language

French is a Romance language of the Indo-European family. It descended from the Vulgar Latin of the Roman Empire, as did all Romance languages. French evolved from Gallo-Romance, the spoken Latin in Gaul, and more specifically in Northern Gaul. Its closest relatives are the other langues d'oïl—languages historically spoken in northern France and in southern Belgium, which French (Francien) has largely supplanted. French was also influenced by native Celtic languages of Northern Roman Gaul like Gallia Belgica and by the (Germanic) Frankish language of the post-Roman Frankish invaders. Today, owing to France's past overseas expansion, there are numerous French-based creole languages, most notably Haitian Creole. A French-speaking person or nation may be referred to as Francophone in both English and French.

Western Europe region comprising the westerly countries of Europe

Western Europe is the region comprising the western part of Europe. Though the term Western Europe is commonly used, there is no commonly agreed-upon definition of the countries that it encompasses.

Contents

History

15th century

The Duchy was created in 1416 when Sigismund, Holy Roman Emperor (r. 1433–1437) awarded the title of "Duke" to Count Amadeus VIII. [5] [6] [7]

Sigismund, Holy Roman Emperor Monarch from the House Luxemburg, 1387 to 1437 King of Hungary, 1410 to 1437 King of Germany,  1419 to 1437 King of Bohemia and 1433 to 1437 Holy Roman Emperor

Sigismund of Luxembourg was Prince-elector of Brandenburg from 1378 until 1388 and from 1411 until 1415, King of Hungary and Croatia from 1387, King of Germany from 1411, King of Bohemia from 1419, King of Italy from 1431, and Holy Roman Emperor from 1433 until 1437, and the last male member of the House of Luxembourg. In 1396 he led the Crusade of Nicopolis, which attempted to liberate Bulgaria and save the Byzantine Empire and Constantinople from Ottoman rule. Afterwards, he founded the Order of the Dragon to fight the Turks. He was regarded as highly educated, spoke several languages and was an outgoing person who also took pleasure in the tournament. Sigismund was one of the driving forces behind the Council of Constance that ended the Papal Schism, but which also led to the Hussite Wars that dominated the later period of Sigismund's life.

A duke (male) or duchess (female) can either be a monarch ruling over a duchy or a member of royalty or nobility, historically of highest rank below the monarch. The title comes from French duc, itself from the Latin dux, 'leader', a term used in republican Rome to refer to a military commander without an official rank, and later coming to mean the leading military commander of a province.

Being landlocked at its conception in 1388, the then-County of Savoy acquired a few kilometres of coastline around Nice. Other than this expansion, the 14th century was generally a time of stagnation. Pressure from neighboring powers, particularly France, prevented development, which characterizes the rest of the Renaissance era for Savoy.

Nice Prefecture and commune in Provence-Alpes-Côte dAzur, France

Nice is the seventh most populous urban area in France and the capital of the Alpes-Maritimes département. The metropolitan area of Nice extends beyond the administrative city limits, with a population of about 1 million on an area of 721 km2 (278 sq mi). Located in the French Riviera, on the south east coast of France on the Mediterranean Sea, at the foot of the Alps, Nice is the second-largest French city on the Mediterranean coast and the second-largest city in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region after Marseille. Nice is approximately 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) from the principality of Monaco and 30 kilometres (19 mi) from the French-Italian border. Nice's airport serves as a gateway to the region.

The reign of Amadeus VIII was a turning point for the economy and the policy of the state, which deeply marked the history of the nation. His long reign was highlighted by wars (the country expanded its territory by defeating the Duchy of Monferrato and Lordship of Saluzzo), as well as reforms and edicts, and also some controversial actions. The first was in 1434, when he chose to withdraw to the Château de Ripaille, where, living the life of a hermit, he founded the Order of St. Maurice. In 1439, he received an appointment as antipope, which he accepted (under the name of Felix V), although he subsequently resigned a decade later out of a fear of undermining the religious unity of Christians.

Saluzzo Comune in Piedmont, Italy

Saluzzo is a town and former principality in the province of Cuneo, Piedmont region, Italy.

Hermit person who lives in seclusion from society

A hermit is a person who lives in seclusion from society, usually for religious reasons. Hermits are a part of several sections of Christianity, and the concept is found in other religions as well.

Antipope Person who holds a significantly accepted claim to be pope, without being recognized as pope

An antipope is a person who, in opposition to the one who is generally seen as the legitimately elected pope, makes a significantly accepted competing claim to be the pope, the Bishop of Rome, and leader of the Roman Catholic Church. At times between the 3rd and mid-15th centuries, antipopes were supported by a fairly significant faction of religious cardinals and secular or anti-religious monarchs and kingdoms. Persons who claim to be pope, but have few followers, such as the modern sedevacantist antipopes, are not classified with the historical antipopes.

Italian Peninsula in 1494. Italy 1494.svg
Italian Peninsula in 1494.

The second important action of the Government of Amadeo VIII was the creation of the Principality of Piedmont in August 1424, the management of which was entrusted to the firstborn of the family as a title of honor. The duke left the territory largely formed from the old Savoy domain.

As a cultured and refined man, Duke Amadeus gave great importance to art. Among others, he worked with the famous Giacomo Jaquerio) in literature and architecture, encouraging the entry of art to the Italian Piedmont.

Giacomo Jaquerio Italian painter

Giacomo Jaquerio was an Italian medieval painter, one of the main exponents of Gothic painting in Piedmont. He was active in his native town Turin, Geneva and other localities of Savoy.

However, his first son Amedeo died prematurely in 1431 and was succeeded by his second son Louis. Louis was in turn succeeded by the weak Amadeus IX, who was extremely religious (he was eventually declared blessed), but of little practical power to the point that he allowed his wife, Yolande (Violante) of Valois, sister of Louis XI, to make very important decisions. During this period, France was more or less free to control the affairs of Savoy, which bound Savoy to the crown in Paris.

The Duchy's economy suffered during these years, not only because of war, but also because of the poor administration by Violante and the continued donations by Amadeus IX to the poor[ citation needed ] of Vercelli. The future of the nation was entrusted to the hands of a boy, Philibert I, who died at the early age of seventeen, after reigning for ten years. He was succeeded by Charles I, whose ascent to the throne seemed to promise a rebirth of the country.

16th century

When Philibert II died in 1504, he was succeeded by Charles III the Good, a rather weak ruler. Since 1515, Savoy was occupied by foreign armies, and Francis I of France was just waiting for the opportunity to permanently annex the duchy of Savoy and its possessions. In 1536, Francis I ordered the occupation of the Duchy, which was invaded by a strong military contingent. Charles III realized too late the weakness of the state, and tried to defend the city of Turin. However, the city was lost on April 3 of the same year. Charles III retired in Vercelli, trying to continue the fight, but never saw the state free from occupation.

Emmanuel Philibert was the Duke who more than any other influenced the future policy of Savoy, managing to put an end to the more than twenty-year long occupation. The Peace of Cateau-Cambrésis, signed in 1559, restored full autonomy to the duchy, with his marriage to Margaret of France. [8]

Realizing that it could no longer trust France, the main center of life and the capital was moved to Turin, which was afforded better defenses by constructing a complex system of fortifications known as the Cittadella (which still can be observed, although it was largely destroyed by the subsequent expansion of the city). From his military experience in Flanders, Emmanuel Philibert learned how to run an army, having won the famous Battle of St. Quentin. He was the first Duke of Savoy to establish a stable military apparatus that was not composed of mercenaries but rather by specially trained Savoyan soldiers.

His son, Charles Emmanuel I, extended the duchy to the detriment of the lordships of Monferrato and the territory of Saluzzo, previously ceded to France, in 1601 under the Treaty of Lyon. Unfortunately, the wars of Charles Emmanuel ended mostly in defeats. Nevertheless, he is remembered as "Charles the Great" since he was a versatile and cultured man, a poet and a skillful reformer. He was able to manage the Duchy at a time of severe crisis vis-a-vis the European powers and found support from the court of the Habsburgs. The policy of Charles Emmanuel was in fact based more on actions of international warfare, such as the possessions of the Marquis of Saluzzo, and the wars of succession of the duchies of Mantua and Monferrato. Generally, Savoy sided, on these occasions, alongside Spain, but on occasion, he fell back to follow the French (as, for example, the Treaty of Susa required).

17th century

During the seventeenth century, the influence of the court of Versailles put pressure on Savoy. Due to the proximity of the Duchy of Milan, troops were stationed in France, and the disposal of Pinerolo (one of the most important strongholds of Savoy), were situated[ by whom? ] close to Turin.[ clarification needed ] The court, which had been under Spanish influence with Charles Emmanuel I, became oriented towards France under his three successors. Vittorio Amedeo I (in office 1630-1637) had married Madame Royale, Maria Christina of Bourbon-France in 1619. Cristina held the real power in Savoy during the short period of the child-duke Francis Hyacinth (reigned 1637-1638) and during the minority (1638-1648) of Charles Emmanuel II.

The strong French influence, plus various misfortunes, repeatedly hit Savoy following the death of Charles Emmanuel I (26 July 1630). First of all, the plague ran rampant in 1630 and contributed significantly to the already widespread poverty.

The Wars of Succession of Monferrato (1628-1631) were very bloody in the countryside and subjected Casale Monferrato to a long siege (1629). Developments of arms and politics affected the economy and future history, exacerbating the already difficult situation after the death of Victor Amadeus I in 1637. He was succeeded for a short period of time by his eldest surviving son, the 5-year-old Francis Hyacinth. The post of regent for the next-oldest son, Carlo Emanuele II, also went to his mother Christine Marie of France, whose followers became known as madamisti (supporters of Madama Reale). Because of this, Savoy became a satellite state of the regent's brother, King Louis XIII of France. The supporters of Cardinal Prince Maurice of Savoy and Prince Thomas Francis of Savoy (both sons of Charles Emmanuel I), together with their followers, took the name of principisti (supporters of the Princes).

Each warring faction soon besieged the city of Turin. The principisti made early gains, making Turin subject to great looting on 27 July 1639. Only in 1642 did the two factions reach an agreement; by now, the widow of Victor Amadeus I had placed Victor's son Charles Emmanuel II on the throne and ruled as regent in his place, even past the child's age of majority.

A resurgence of religious wars took place during the regency. Subsequently, in 1655, Savoyard troops massacred large numbers of the Protestant population of the Waldensian valleys, an event known as the Piedmont Easter (Pasque Piedmont). Eventually international pressure stopped the massacres.[ citation needed ] A final agreement with the Waldensians was carried out in 1664.[ citation needed ]

The government of Charles Emmanuel II was the first step towards major reforms carried out by his successor Victor Amadeus II in the next century. Of particular importance were the founding of militias in Savoy and the establishment of the first public school-system in 1661. A cultured man, but also a great statesman, Charles Emmanuel imitated Louis XIV. He wanted to limit this[ which? ] to the court in the sumptuous palace of Venaria Reale, a masterpiece of Baroque architecture, and a copy recreated in Italy of the magnificence of the Palace of Versailles. It was a time of great urban expansion, and Charles Emmanuel II promoted the growth of Turin and its reconstruction in the baroque style. After his death in 1675, there followed the period of the regency (1675-1684) of his widow, the new Madama Reale, Maria Giovanna Battista of Savoy-Nemours.

From duchy to kingdom

The son of Charles Emmanuel II, Victor Amadeus II, was kept under the regency of his mother, the French born Marie Jeanne of Savoy. In the early years of the reign, his energetic mother attempted to unite the crown of Savoy with the Portuguese, and thus risked compromising the very survival of the duchy (Savoy would be reduced like other Italian states to a foreign power). Under the determined hand of the regent Victor Amadeus II, Savoy entered into bad relations with the crown in Paris, which led to the invasion of the duchy by French forces. Savoy defeated the army of Louis XIV in the Siege of Cuneo, but was dramatically defeated in the battles of Staffarda and Marsaglia. Victor Amadeus II married Anne Marie d'Orléans, niece of Louis XIV.

Italian Peninsula in 1796. Italy 1796.svg
Italian Peninsula in 1796.

After the War of the Great Alliance, Savoy sided during the first phase of the War of the Spanish Succession alongside Louis XIV. By changing alliances, a new French invasion of Savoy came about, with the troops of the Marquis of Fouillade defeating the troops of Savoy and chasing them into Turin. The event, which succeeded only thanks to the arrival on the battlefield of the duke's cousin, Eugene of Savoy, resolved a conflict that spread destruction in Savoy.

At the end of the war in 1713, Savoy received Sicily, and Victor was awarded the title of King besides the title of Duke of Savoy. According to the treaty of London of 1718, Victor Amadeus II exchanged Sicily for Sardinia in 1720. Sardinia was then changed into the Kingdom of Sardinia. This newly formed country was called States of Savoy or Kingdom of Sardinia, and was composed of several states including Savoy, Piedmont, Aosta Valley, Nice, Oneglia and Sardinia.

After the French Revolution, Savoy was occupied by French Revolutionary forces between 1792 and 1815. The country was first added to the département of Mont-Blanc; then, in 1798, it was divided between the départements of Mont-Blanc and Léman (French name of Lake Geneva). Savoy, Piedmont and Nice were restored to the States of Savoy at the Congress of Vienna in 1814–1815.

In 1860, under the terms of the Treaty of Turin, the Duchy of Savoy was annexed by France. The last Duke of Savoy, Victor Emmanuel II, became King of Italy.

List of Dukes of Savoy

Flag

The flag of Savoy is a white cross on a red field. It is based on a crusader flag, and as such is identical in origin to the flag of the Knights of Malta (whence the modern Flag of Malta and of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta), and others (flags of Denmark and Switzerland, with inverted colors to those of England and Genoa, among others). It was possibly first used by Amadeus III, Count of Savoy, who went on the Second Crusade in 1147.[ citation needed ] In the 18th century, the letters "FERT" were sometimes added in the cantons to distinguish the flag from the Maltese one.

Notes

  1. ^ When the Duchy of Savoy acquired Sicily in 1713 and later Sardinia in 1720, the title of "Duke of Savoy", while remaining a primary title, became a lesser title to the title of King. The Duchy of Savoy remained as a state of the new country until the provincial reform of King Charles Albert, at which point the kingdom became a unitary state.

Related Research Articles

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References

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