|Eleanor of Austria|
Portrait by Joos van Cleve, c. 1530
|Queen consort of Portugal|
|Tenure||16 July 1518 – 13 December 1521|
|Queen consort of France|
|Tenure||4 July 1530 – 31 March 1547|
|Coronation||31 May 1531|
|Born||15 November 1498|
|Died||25 February 1558 59) (aged|
Talavera la Real
Manuel I of Portugal
(m. 1518;died 1521)
Francis I of France
(m. 1530;died 1547)
|Maria, Duchess of Viseu|
|Father||Philip I of Castile|
|Mother||Joanna of Castile|
Eleanor of Austria (15 November 1498 – 25 February 1558), also called Eleanor of Castile, was born an Archduchess of Austria and Infanta of Castile from the House of Habsburg, and subsequently became Queen consort of Portugal (1518–1521) and of France (1530–1547). She also held the Duchy of Touraine (1547–1558) in dower. She is called "Leonor" in Spanish and Portuguese and "Eléonore" or "Aliénor" in French.
Eleanor was born in 1498 at Leuven, the eldest child of Philip of Austria and Joanna of Castile, who would later become co-sovereigns of Castile. Her father was also the son of the reigning Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I and his deceased consort Mary of Burgundy, while her mother was the daughter of the Catholic Monarchs; namely Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile. Her siblings were Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I, Queen Isabella of Denmark, Queen Mary of Hungary and Queen Catherine of Portugal. She was named after her paternal great-grandmother, Eleanor of Portugal, Holy Roman Empress.
When she was a child, Eleanor's relatives tried to marry her to the future King of England, Henry VIII, to whom she was betrothed. However, when Henry's father died and he became King, Henry decided to marry Eleanor's aunt, Catherine of Aragon, who was the widow of King Henry's older brother, Arthur, Prince of Wales. Her relatives also tried to marry her to the French Kings Louis XII or Francis I or to the Polish King Sigismund I, but nothing came of these plans. Eleanor was also proposed as a marriage candidate for Antoine, Duke of Lorraine, in 1510.
In 1517 Eleanor may have had a love affair with Frederick II, Elector Palatine. Her brother King Charles, who had succeeded their elderly grandfather King Ferdinand as King of Spain the year before, once discovered her reading a love letter from Frederick. Charles forced Eleanor and Frederick to swear in front of an attorney that they were not secretly married, after which he expelled Frederick from court. She followed her brother to Spain in 1517.
Eleanor married her uncle by marriage, King Manuel I of Portugal, after a proposed marriage with her cousin, the future King John III of Portugal, did not occur. Her brother Charles arranged the marriage between Eleanor and the King of Portugal to avoid the possibility of Portuguese assistance for any rebellion in Castile. Manuel had previously been married to two of Eleanor's maternal aunts, Isabella of Aragon and Maria of Aragon.
Manuel and Eleanor married on 16 July 1518. They had two children: the Infante Charles (born 18 February 1520 – died 15 April 1521) and the Infanta Maria (born 8 June 1521, and who was later one of the richest princesses of Europe). She became a widow on 13 December 1521, when Manuel died of the plague. As Queen Dowager of Portugal, Eleanor returned to the court of Charles in Spain. Eleanor's sister Catherine later married Eleanor's stepson, King John III of Portugal.
In July 1523, Eleanor was engaged to Charles III, Duke of Bourbon, in an alliance between Charles and Bourbon against France, but the marriage never took place. In 1526, Eleanor was engaged to King Francis I of France during his captivity in Spain.
In 1529, by the treaty called "La Paz de las Damas" (The Ladies' Peace), it was stipulated that the marriage should take place. She was married to Francis on 4 July 1530. They had no children.
Eleanor left Spain in the company of her future stepsons, who were now to be released having been held hostage by her brother. The group met Francis at the border, where Eleanor and Francis were married, and then departed for an official entrance to Bordeaux. Eleanor was crowned Queen of France in Saint-Denis on 31 May 1531. She was dressed in purple velvet at her coronation. Eleanor was ignored by Francis, who seldom performed his marital obligations and preferred his lover Anne de Pisseleu d'Heilly. At the official entrance of Eleanor to Paris, Francis displayed himself openly to the public in a window with his lover Anne for a period of two hours.
Queen Eleanor performed as the queen of France at official occasions, such as at the wedding between her stepson Henry and Catherine de' Medici in 1533. She also performed charity and was praised for this. She also took her stepdaughters, Madeleine and Margaret, into her household to raise them further.
As the French queen, Eleanor did not have any political power; however, she was used as a contact between France and the Holy Roman Empire. Queen Eleanor was present at the peace negotiations between Francis and Charles in Aigues-Mortes in 1538. In 1544, she was given the task of entering peace negotiations with Charles and their sister Mary. In November 1544, she visited Charles in Brussels.
As a queen dowager, Eleanor left France for Brussels in 1548. She witnessed the abdication of Charles in October 1555 and left for Spain with him and their sister Mary in August 1556. She lived with her sister in Jarandilla de la Vera, where they often visited their brother, who retired to a monastery nearby. In 1558, she met her daughter Maria in Badajoz for the first time in 28 years. Eleanor died in 1558 on the return trip from Badajoz.
|Ancestors of Eleanor of Austria|
Charles V was Holy Roman Emperor and Archduke of Austria from 1519, King of Spain from 1516, and Lord of the Netherlands as titular Duke of Burgundy from 1506. As head of the rising House of Habsburg during the first half of the 16th century, his dominions in Europe included the Holy Roman Empire, extending from Germany to northern Italy with direct rule over the Austrian hereditary lands and the Burgundian Low Countries, and a unified Spain with its southern Italian kingdoms of Naples, Sicily, and Sardinia. Furthermore, his reign encompassed both the long-lasting Spanish and short-lived German colonizations of the Americas. The personal union of the European and American territories of Charles V was the first collection of realms labelled "the empire on which the sun never sets".
Joanna, known historically as Joanna the Mad, was Queen of Castile from 1504, and of Aragon from 1516. Modern Spain evolved from the union of these two crowns. Joanna was married by arrangement to Philip the Handsome, Archduke of the House of Habsburg, on 20 October 1496. Following the deaths of her brother, John, Prince of Asturias, in 1497, her elder sister Isabella in 1498, and her nephew Miguel in 1500, Joanna became the heir presumptive to the crowns of Castile and Aragon. When her mother Queen Isabella I of Castile died in 1504, Joanna became Queen of Castile, while her father, King Ferdinand II of Aragon, proclaimed himself 'Governor and Administrator of Castile'. In 1506 Archduke Philip became King of Castile jure uxoris, initiating the rule of the Habsburgs in the Spanish kingdoms, and died that same year. Despite being the ruling Queen of Castile, she had little effect on national policy during her reign as she was declared insane and imprisoned in Tordesillas under the orders of her father, who ruled as regent until his death in 1516, when she inherited his kingdom as well. From 1516, when her son Charles I ruled as king, she was nominally co-monarch but remained imprisoned until her death.
Philip the Handsome, also called the Fair, was Duke of Burgundy from 1482 to 1506 and the first member of the house of Habsburg to be King of Castile.
Charles, Prince of Viana, sometimes called Charles IV of Navarre, was the son of King John II of Aragon and Queen Blanche I of Navarre.
Isabella of Austria, also known as Elizabeth, Archduchess of Austria and Infanta of Castile and Aragon, was Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden as the consort of King Christian II. She was the daughter of King Philip I and Queen Joanna of Castile and the sister of Emperor Charles V. She was born at Brussels. She served as regent of Denmark in 1520.
Catherine of Austria was Queen of Portugal as wife of King John III, and regent during the minority of her grandson, King Sebastian, from 1557 until 1562.
Joanna of Austria was a Princess of Portugal by marriage to John Manuel, Prince of Portugal. She served as regent of Spain to her brother Philip II of Spain during his trip to England to marry Mary I in 1554-1556, and from 1556 to 1559. She was the mother of King Sebastian of Portugal.
Infanta Beatrice of Portugal was Duchess of Savoy by marriage to Charles III, Duke of Savoy. She was the Sovereign Countess of Asti from 1531 to 1538.
Duarte, Duke of Guimarães was a Portuguese infante (prince); the sixth son of King Manuel I of Portugal and his wife Maria of Aragon.
Maria of Portugal, Duchess of Viseu was an Infanta of Portugal, the only daughter of King Manuel I of Portugal and Eleanor of Austria. A noted patron of the arts, Maria's personal wealth rivaled that of the king, her brother, making her the richest woman in Portugal and one of the richest in Europe.
John, Prince of Asturias, was the only son of Queen Isabella I of Castile and King Ferdinand II of Aragon who survived to adulthood.
Isabella, Princess of Asturias was a Queen consort of Portugal and heir presumptive of King Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella I of Castile, as their eldest daughter. Her younger siblings were John, Prince of Asturias, Queen Joanna I of Castile, Maria, Queen of Portugal and Catherine, Queen of England.
Maria of Aragon was a Spanish infanta, and queen consort of Portugal as the second spouse of Portuguese King Manuel I.
Barbara of Austria was Duchess consort of Ferrara, Modena, and Reggio by marriage to Alfonso II d'Este, Duke of Ferrara.
Joanna of Austria was born an Archduchess of Austria as the youngest daughter of Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor, and Anna of Bohemia and Hungary. By marriage, she was the Grand Princess of Tuscany and later the Grand Duchess of Tuscany. One of her daughters was Marie de Medici, second wife of King Henry IV of France.
Charles II Francis of Austria was an Archduke of Austria and ruler of Inner Austria from 1564. He was a member of the House of Habsburg.
Anna of Austria, a member of the Imperial House of Habsburg, was Duchess of Bavaria from 1550 until 1579, by her marriage with Duke Albert V.
Archduchess Eleanor of Austria was a Duchess of Mantua by marriage to William I, Duke of Mantua. She was the daughter of Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor and Anna of Bohemia and Hungary.
Ferdinand II was King of Aragon from 1479 and, by marriage, King of Castile from 1474, reigning over a dynastically unified Spain jointly with his wife Isabella I. Ferdinand is considered de facto the first King of Spain, being described as such during his own lifetime, altough Castile and Aragon remained de jure two different kingdoms until the Nueva Planta Decrees of 1716.
Isabella of Portugal, also known as the "Empress of the Carnation", was Holy Roman Empress, Queen consort of Spain, Germany, and Italy, and Lady of the Netherlands by her marriage to Emperor Charles V. She was regent of Spain during the years 1529-1533, 1537, and 1538-1539.
Maria of Aragon
| Queen consort of Portugal |
16 July 1516 – 13 December 1521
Catherine of Austria
Claude of France
| Queen consort of France |
4 July 1530 – 31 March 1547
Catherine de' Medici