|Siege of Paris|
|Part of the French Wars of Religion|
Coat of arms of the city of Paris.
| French Royal Army |
Kingdom of England
French Huguenot forces
City of Paris
|Commanders and leaders|
| Henry IV of France |
| Duke of Nemours |
Duke of Parma
|12,000 rising to 25,000||Approx. 30,000–50,000 (defenders and relief army)|
The siege of Paris took place in 1590 during the French Wars of Religion when the French Royal Army under Henry of Navarre, and supported by the Huguenots, failed to capture the city of Paris from the Catholic League. Paris was finally relieved from the siege by an international Catholic and Spanish army under the command of Alexander Farnese, Duke of Parma. 
After his victory over the Catholic forces commanded by Charles, Duke of Mayenne and Charles of Guise, Duke of Aumale at the Battle of Ivry on 14 March, Henry of Navarre advanced with his troops on his main objective of Paris, possession of which would allow him to confirm his contested claim to the French throne. Paris at the time was a large walled city of around 200,000–220,000 people. 
On 7 May, Henry's army surrounded the city, imposing a blockade and burnt windmills to prevent food from reaching Paris.  Henry had at this point only around 12,000–13,000 troops, facing defenders estimated at around 30,000, mostly militia. Owing to the limited amount of heavy siege artillery that Henry had brought, it was thought that the Catholic city could only be compelled to surrender through starvation.  The city's defence was placed in the hands of the young Charles Emmanuel, Duke of Nemours. 
Henry set up his artillery on the hills of Montmartre, and bombarded the city from there. In July his force was swelled by reinforcements to 25,000 and by August he had overrun all the suburbs outside the city walls. Henry tried to negotiate the surrender of Paris, but his terms were rejected and the siege continued.
On 30 August, news reached the city that a Spanish-Catholic relief army under general the Duke of Parma was on its way.  The Duke of Parma's army was able to break the siege and send food supplies into the city. After a final attack on the city's ramparts failed, Henry broke off his siege and retreated. An estimated 40,000–50,000 of the population died during the siege, most of starvation.  Some resorted to cannibalism after all animals had been consumed. 
After repeated failures to take the capital of Paris, Henry IV converted to Catholicism in 1593, reportedly declaring that "Paris is well worth a mass". The war-weary Parisians turned on the Catholic League's hardliners, who continued the conflict even after Henry had converted. Paris jubilantly welcomed the formerly Protestant Henry in 1594, and he was crowned King of France that year. Four years later he issued the Edict of Nantes in an attempt to end the religious strife that had torn the country apart. 
Henry IV, also known by the epithets Good King Henry or Henry the Great, was King of Navarre from 1572 and King of France from 1589 to 1610. He was the first monarch of France from the House of Bourbon, a cadet branch of the Capetian dynasty. He was assassinated in 1610 by François Ravaillac, a Catholic zealot, and was succeeded by his son Louis XIII.
Charles IX was King of France from 1560 until his death in 1574. He ascended the French throne upon the death of his brother Francis II in 1560, and as such was the penultimate monarch of the House of Valois.
Henry III was King of France from 1574 until his assassination in 1589, as well as King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1573 to 1575.
The French Wars of Religion is the term which is used in reference to a period of civil war between French Catholics and Protestants, commonly called Huguenots, which lasted from 1562 to 1598. According to estimates, between two and four million people died from violence, famine or diseases which were directly caused by the conflict; additionally, the conflict severely damaged the power of the French monarchy. The fighting ended in 1598 when Henry of Navarre, who had converted to Catholicism in 1593, was proclaimed Henry IV of France and issued the Edict of Nantes, which granted substantial rights and freedoms to the Huguenots. However, the Catholics continued to have a hostile opinion of Protestants in general and they also continued to have a hostile opinion of him as a person, and his assassination in 1610 triggered a fresh round of Huguenot rebellions in the 1620s.
The Catholic League of France, sometimes referred to by contemporary Catholics as the Holy League, was a major participant in the French Wars of Religion. The League, founded and led by Henry I, Duke of Guise, intended the eradication of Protestantism from Catholic France, as well as the replacement of King Henry III.
Charles of Lorraine, Duke of Mayenne, or Charles de Guise, was a French nobleman of the house of Guise and a military leader of the Catholic League, which he headed during the French Wars of Religion, following the assassination of his brothers at Blois in 1588. In 1596, when he made peace with Henry IV of France, the wars were essentially at an end.
The Edict of Saint-Germain, also known as the Edict of January, was a landmark decree of tolerance promulgated by the regent of France, Catherine de' Medici, in January 1562. The edict provided limited tolerance to the Protestant Huguenots in the Catholic realm, though with counterweighing restrictions on their behaviour. The act represented the culmination of several years of slowly liberalising edicts which had begun with the 1560 Edict of Amboise. After two months the Paris Parlement would be compelled to register it by the rapidly deteriorating situation in the capital. The practical impact of the edict would be highly limited by the subsequent outbreak of the first French Wars of Religion but it would form the foundation for subsequent toleration edicts as the Edict of Nantes of 1598.
Jacques d'Albon, Seigneur de Saint-André was a French governor, Marshal, and favourite of Henri II. He began his career as a confident of the dauphin during the reign of François I, reared with the prince under the governorship of his father at court. In 1547 at the advent of Henri's reign he was appointed as his father's deputy, serving as lieutenant general for the Lyonnais. Concurrently he entered the king's conseil privé and was made a Marshal and Grand Chamberlain.
The Edict of Boulogne, also called the Edict of Pacification of Boulogne and the Peace of La Rochelle, was signed in June 1573 by Charles IX of France in the Château de Madrid in the Bois de Boulogne. It was officially registered by the Parlement of Paris on 11 August 1573. The treaty officially ended the fourth phase of the French Wars of Religion.
The Peace of Longjumeau was signed on 23 March 1568 by Charles IX of France and Catherine de' Medici. The edict brought to an end the brief second French Wars of Religion with terms that largely confirmed those of the prior edict of Amboise. Unlike the previous edict it would not be sent to the Parlements to examine prior to its publication, due to what the crown had felt was obstructionism the last time. The edict would not however last, and it would be overturned later in the year, being replaced by the Edict of Saint-Maur which outlawed Protestantism at the beginning of the third war of religion.
The siege of La Rochelle of 1572–1573 was a massive military assault on the Huguenot city of La Rochelle by Catholic troops during the fourth phase of the French Wars of Religion, following the August 1572 St. Bartholomew's Day massacre. The conflict began in November 1572 when inhabitants of the city refused to receive Armand de Gontaut, baron de Biron, as royal governor. Beginning on 11 February 1573, the siege was led by the Duke of Anjou. Political considerations following the duke's election to the throne of Poland in May 1573 resulted in negotiations, culminating on 24 June 1573, that lifted the siege on 6 July 1573. The Edict of Boulogne signed shortly thereafter brought an end to this phase of the civil war.
Louis de Bourbon, Duc de Montpensier was the second Duke of Montpensier, a French Prince of the Blood, military commander and governor. He began his military career during the Italian Wars, and in 1557 was captured after the disastrous battle of Saint-Quentin. His liberty restored he found himself courted by the new regime as it sought to steady itself and isolate its opponents in the wake of the Conspiracy of Amboise. At this time Montpensier supported liberalising religious reform, as typified by the Edict of Amboise he was present for the creation of.
The surprise of Meaux was a failed coup attempt by leading aristocratic Huguenots which precipitated the second French War of Religion. Dissatisfied with their lot, and under the pretext of fear of extermination, Louis, Prince of Condé and Gaspard II de Coligny plotted to seize the king, Charles IX, while he was staying near Meaux. Alerted by the mustering of the Huguenots, the royal court made a dash for Paris, fighting off attempts to break through to them en route. Their plan foiled, the Huguenots laid siege to the city, beginning the second war. The event would be of lasting importance in the reputation it gave its architects for sedition.
The Battle of Craon took place between 21–24 May 1592, between the French Royal army under the Duke of Montpensier and François de Bourbon, Prince of Conti, reinforced by English contingents under Sir John Norreys, against the combined forces of Spain, during their occupation of Brittany, and the Catholic League of France during the War of the Three Henrys and the Anglo-Spanish War (1585–1604), in the context of the French Wars of Religion. Craon was besieged by the army of Henry of Navarre, but the defenders, supported by a Catholic relief force recruited by Philippe Emmanuel, Duke of Mercœur, resisted. At the end, Craon was relieved by the Spaniards under Don Juan del Águila, who defeated the Anglo-French besiegers.
The siege of Amiens was a siege and battle fought during the Franco-Spanish War (1595–1598), as part of both the French Wars of Religion and the Anglo-Spanish War (1585–1604), between 13 May and 25 September 1597. The Spanish, who had sent a large army in March, had captured the city of Amiens easily in a ruse. Henry IV of France, after the surprise of the capture, immediately and quickly built up an army which included a large English force and besieged Amiens on 13 May.
The siege of Calais of 1596, also known as the Spanish conquest of Calais, took place at the strategic port-city of Calais, between 8 and 24 April 1596, as part of the Franco-Spanish War (1595–1598), in the context of the French Wars of Religion, the Anglo-Spanish War (1585–1604), and the Eighty Years' War. The siege ended when the city fell into Spanish hands after a short and intense siege by the Spanish Army of Flanders commanded by Archduke Albert of Austria, Governor-General of the Spanish Netherlands. The French troops in the citadel of Calais resisted for a few days more but finally, on 24 April, the Spanish troops led by Don Luis de Velasco y Velasco, Count of Salazar, assaulted and captured the fortress, achieving a complete victory. The Spanish success was the first action of the campaign of Archduke Albert of 1596.
The siege of Doullens, also known as the Spanish capture of Doullens or the Storming of Doullens, took place between 14 and 31 July 1595, as part of the Franco-Spanish War (1595-1598), in the context of the French Wars of Religion. After ten days of siege, on 24 July, the combined forces of Henri de La Tour d'Auvergne, Duke of Bouillon, André de Brancas, Amiral de Villars, and François d'Orléans-Longueville, tried to relieve the city, but were severely defeated by the Spanish forces led by Don Pedro Henríquez de Acevedo, Count of Fuentes, and Don Carlos Coloma. Villars was taken prisoner and executed, and the Duke of Bouillon fled to Amiens with the rest of the French army. Finally, a few days after, on 31 July, the Spanish troops stormed Doullens. The Spaniards killed everybody in the city, military and civilians alike, shouting "Remember Ham"(Spanish: "Recordad Ham"), in retaliation for the massacre against the Spanish garrison of Ham by the French and Protestant soldiers under Bouillon's orders.
The siege of Caudebec was a military event that took place between 24 April to 21 May 1592 as part of the French Wars of Religion and the Anglo-Spanish War (1585–1604). The Spanish and the French Catholic League forces of Duke of Parma had captured the town of Caudebec on the Seine, where they soon found themselves trapped by the reinforced Royalist Protestant army led by Henry of Navarre consisting of French, English, and Dutch troops. Seeing that Henry's force had now surrounded him, Parma seeing that defeat was inevitable, pulled his 15,000 men across the river in a single night to escape and retreat to the south.
The siege of Orléans was the final key military engagement of the first French Wars of Religion. Having lost the Battle of Dreux the rebel Huguenots fell back with their remaining forces to the city. Francis, Duke of Guise, the only non captive royal commander, moved to lay siege to the town, hoping its capitulation would bring about a total victory for the crowns forces. However, despite reducing the suburbs, he would be assassinated at the siege before he could bring it to a conclusion. As a result the captive Louis, Prince of Condé and Anne de Montmorency at Catherine de' Medici's direction were able to negotiate a compromise end to the first war in the Edict of Amboise.
The Edict of July, also known as the Edict of Saint-Germain was a decree of limited tolerance promulgated by the regent of France, Catherine de' Medici, in July 1561. Whilst it emphasised a continued commitment to banning Huguenot worship in France, it granted pardon for all religious offenses since the reign of Henry II, who had died two years earlier, which was a victory for the Protestant community. A further Protestant victory was in the reaffirmation of the removal of the death penalty for heresy cases. The edict would be overtaken by events, and ultimately left unenforced as France moved first to the landmark Edict of Saint-Germain and then into the Wars of Religion.
Coordinates: 48°51′24″N2°21′06″E / 48.8566°N 2.3518°E