Isabella Clara Eugenia
Isabella Clara Eugenia was sovereign of the Spanish Netherlands in the Low Countries and the north of modern France, together with her husband Albert VII, Archduke of Austria. In some sources, she is referred to as Clara Isabella Eugenia, by birth, she was an infanta of Spain and Portugal. Isabella Clara Eugenia of Austria was born in the Palacio del bosque de Valsaín, Segovia on 12 August 1566, daughter of Philip II of Spain and her paternal grandparents were Emperor Charles V and Isabella of Portugal. Her maternal grandparents were Henry II of France and Catherine de Medici and her father, Philip II, was reportedly overjoyed at her birth and declared himself to be happier on the occasion than he would have been at the birth of a son. Isabellas mother, Elisabeth of Valois, had originally been betrothed to Don Carlos, despite the significant age difference between them, Philip was very attached to Elisabeth, staying close by her side even when she was ill with smallpox. Elisabeths first pregnancy in 1564 ended in a miscarriage of twin daughters and she gave birth to Isabella Clara Eugenia on 12 August 1566, and to Isabellas younger sister Infanta Catherine Michelle of Spain 10 October 1567.
Elisabeth miscarried a daughter in 1568 and died the same day, Isabella grew up with her sister Infanta Catherine Michelle of Spain, beloved by her father and her stepmother Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain, Philips fourth wife. Philip ultimately fathered five children by Anna, all of whom died in childhood except his heir. Isabella was the person whom Philip permitted to help him with his work, sorting his papers. Since 1568, at the age of two, Isabella Clara Eugenia was promised to marry Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor, son of Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor, Maria was a daughter of her paternal grandparents Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, and Isabella of Portugal. Isabella Clara Eugenia, had to wait for more than 20 years before the eccentric Rudolf declared that he had no intention of marrying anybody, at any rate, Isabella Clara Eugenias mother had ceded any claim to the French crown with her marriage to Philip II. However the Parlement de Paris, in power of the Catholic party and her father decided to cede the Spanish Netherlands to her on condition that she marry her cousin, Albert VII, Archduke of Austria.
They were to reign over the Netherlands jointly as duke/count and duchess/countess and it was stipulated that, should they have no children, the Netherlands would revert to the King of Spain upon the death of either spouse. On 18 April 1599, being 33 years old, she married Albert, Albert was the joint sovereign of the Seventeen Provinces and the former viceroy of Portugal. As Albert was the Archbishop of Toledo, he had to be released from his religious commitments by Pope Clement VIII before the wedding could take place. Shortly before Philip II died on 13 September 1598, he renounced his rights to the Netherlands in favor of his daughter Isabella and her fiancé. Beginning in 1601, the couple ruled the Spanish Netherlands together, a false anecdote links Isabella, the siege of Ostend, and the horse coat colour isabelline. The reign of Albert and Isabella is considered the Golden Age of the Spanish Netherlands, the reign of the Archduke Albert of Austria and Archduchess Isabella Clara Eugenia is a key period in the history of the Spanish Netherlands
Madrid is the capital city of the Kingdom of Spain and the largest municipality in both the Community of Madrid and Spain as a whole. The city has a population of almost 3.2 million with an area population of approximately 6.5 million. It is the third-largest city in the European Union after London and Berlin, the municipality itself covers an area of 604.3 km2. Madrid lies on the River Manzanares in the centre of both the country and the Community of Madrid, this community is bordered by the communities of Castile and León. As the capital city of Spain, seat of government, and residence of the Spanish monarch, Madrid is the political, the current mayor is Manuela Carmena from Ahora Madrid. Madrid is home to two football clubs, Real Madrid and Atlético de Madrid. Madrid is the 17th most liveable city in the according to Monocle magazine. Madrid organises fairs such as FITUR, ARCO, SIMO TCI, while Madrid possesses modern infrastructure, it has preserved the look and feel of many of its historic neighbourhoods and streets.
Cibeles Palace and Fountain have become one of the monument symbols of the city, the first documented reference of the city originates in Andalusan times as the Arabic مجريط Majrīṭ, which was retained in Medieval Spanish as Magerit. A wider number of theories have been formulated on possible earlier origins, according to legend, Madrid was founded by Ocno Bianor and was named Metragirta or Mantua Carpetana. The most ancient recorded name of the city Magerit comes from the name of a built on the Manzanares River in the 9th century AD. Nevertheless, it is speculated that the origin of the current name of the city comes from the 2nd century BC. The Roman Empire established a settlement on the banks of the Manzanares river, the name of this first village was Matrice. In the 8th century, the Islamic conquest of the Iberian Peninsula saw the changed to Mayrit, from the Arabic term ميرا Mayra. The modern Madrid evolved from the Mozarabic Matrit, which is still in the Madrilenian gentilic, after the disintegration of the Caliphate of Córdoba, Madrid was integrated in the Taifa of Toledo.
With the surrender of Toledo to Alfonso VI of León and Castile, the city was conquered by Christians in 1085, Christians replaced Muslims in the occupation of the centre of the city, while Muslims and Jews settled in the suburbs. The city was thriving and was given the title of Villa, since 1188, Madrid won the right to be a city with representation in the courts of Castile. In 1202, King Alfonso VIII of Castile gave Madrid its first charter to regulate the municipal council, which was expanded in 1222 by Ferdinand III of Castile
Maria Anna of Spain
Maria Anna of Spain, was by birth Infanta of Spain and by marriage Holy Roman Empress and Queen of Hungary and Bohemia as the wife of Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor. Of her seven siblings, only four survived infancy, Philip IV of Spain, Maria Annas parents had a close kinship, her father was her mothers first cousin once-removed. From early childhood, Maria Anna has played an important role in the projects of her father. London and Madrid began active negotiations, the possible marriage between the Prince of Wales and the Spanish Infanta, was known in history under the name Spanish Match, and caused an internal political crisis in both England and Scotland. In 1623 the Prince of Wales, accompanied by George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham, Maria Anna did not wish to marry a Protestant and Charles would not convert to Catholicism. At the end, the wedding never took place not only for political reasons, Charles eventually married Henrietta Maria of France. At the end of 1626 Maria Anna was betrothed to the brother of her first fiance, Ferdinand.
The formal engagement was preceded by a series of negotiations which were conducted in 1625 and that same year, Prince Ferdinand was crowned King of Hungary, and in 1627 King of Bohemia. In the negotiations were included all the aspects of the Infanta at the court of her future spouse. Despite the desire of the groom that Maria Annas confessor would be the Jesuit Ambrosio Penalosa, Maria Anna had left Madrid for Vienna in December 1629. The travel took more than a year, enroute by sea, in Genoa complications arose due to an epidemic of the plague that erupted in the Italian Peninsula. For this reason, the cortege was unable to stop in Bologna, the cortege moved to Naples, where Maria Anna finally received the award. Leaving the Kingdom of Naples, the Infanta crossed the Papal States, on this section of her journey Maria Anna was accompanied by Roman aristocracy, led by another nephew of Pope Urban VIII, Taddeo Barberini, Prince of Palestrina. On 26 January 1631 she arrived in Trieste, where she met Archduke Leopold Wilhelm of Austria, her future brother-in-law and that day, Maria Anna was married to King Ferdinand of Hungria-Bohemia per procura with Archduke Leopold Wilhelm serving as the proxy.
Before the official wedding, King Ferdinand, not trusting the previous portraits that he had seen of the Infanta, the Royal oberhofmeister asked for an audience with Maria Anna, on this visit, he was accompanied by some nobles, among whom was her groom. Struck by the beauty of the Infanta, King Ferdinand immediately revealed his identity, the love and respect that the future emperor felt for his wife lasted through all their marriage. He was never unfaithful to her or had illegitimate children, in Vienna on 20 February 1631 Maria Anna was formally married with King Ferdinand of Hungary-Bohemia, with festivities lasting a month. The marriage was described as friendly, Maria Anna was described as happy-tempered and intelligent, and she able to ease the feelings of the melancholic Ferdinand
John of Austria
He became a military leader in the service of his half-brother, King Philip II of Spain and is best known for his role as the admiral of the Holy Alliance fleet at the Battle of Lepanto. The date of his birth is unknown, with sources indicating that he was born in the year 1545 and others, like G. Parker or P. Pierson. Pierson makes mention that some contemporaries affirmed that he was born in 1545, but that the oldest evidence found in France with regards to public ceremonies, supports the date of 1547. It is likely that John of Austria was conceived in May 1546, when Emperor Charles V was in Regensburg and it is possible that John had deliberately chosen the 24th of February as his birthday, which was the month and day of his father Charles Vs birth. Shortly after giving birth, Barbara Blomberg was quickly married to Hieronymus Kegel, John of Austrias original name as a child, Geronimo or Jeromín, was an allusion to his stepfather. Charles V decided that his son should be raised in Spain away from his mother and his Majordomo, Luis de Quijada, had reached an agreement with Francisco Massy, a violist of the imperial court, and married to a Spanish woman, Ana de Medina.
In exchange for an income of 50 ducats, the couple had agreed to raise the child. In mid-1551 they together had arrived in Leganés, where Ana de Medina had property, in the summer of 1554, the boy was taken to the castle of Luis de Quijada in Villagarcía de Campos, Valladolid. His wife, Magdalena de Ulloa, took charge of his education, assisted by the Latin teacher Guillén Prieto, the chaplain García de Morales and the squire Juan Galarza. Charles V wrote a codicil, dated 6 June 1554, in which he recognized, For since I was in Germany, after being widowed, I had a child of one unmarried woman. In the summer of 1558, Charles V had ordered Luis de Quijada, his wife Magdalena de Ulloa, the Emperor was already residing nearby at the Monastery of Yuste. From that time forward, and until his own death in September of that year, Charles Vs only surviving legitimate son and heir, now King Philip II after his fathers abdication, was outside of Spain. Rumors had spread about the paternity of the child, which de Quijada had denied, Charles V replied with a note written by his personal secretary Eraso, in whose erasures and amendments were expressed, the Emperors thoughts about how best to deal with such a delicate matter.
It was recommended to wait for Philip IIs return to Spain, Philip II returned from Brussels in 1559, aware of his fathers will. Once he had settled in Valladolid, he had summoned de Quijada to bring along Jeromín to a hunt, the first meeting between the two of them took place on 28 September in the Monastery of Santa María de La Santa Espina. When the King appeared, Luis de Quijada told Jeromín to dismount, when Jeromín did so, Philip II asked him if he knew the identity of his father. When the boy did not know, the King embraced him and explained that they had the same father, in formal style he was your excellency, the address used for a Spanish grandee, and known as Don Juan de Austria. John did not live in a palace, but rather maintained a separate household with Luis de Quijada as the head
Charles II of Spain
Charles II of Spain was the last Habsburg ruler of Spain. His realm included Southern Netherlands, Italian territories, several cities in north Africa and Spains overseas empire, known as the Bewitched, he is noted for his extensive physical and emotional disabilities and his consequent ineffectual rule. He died in 1700, childless and heirless, with all potential Habsburg successors having predeceased him, in his will, Charles named as his successor the almost 17-year-old Philip, Duke of Anjou, grandson of Charles half-sister Maria Theresa of Spain, the first wife of Louis XIV. Charles was born in the Spanish capital, the son of Philip IV of Spain and his second wife, Mariana of Austria. As the only surviving heir of his fathers two marriages, Charles was named Prince of Asturias, the title given to the person first in line to the Spanish throne. The Spanish branch of the Habsburg royal family was noted for extreme consanguinity, well aware that they owed their power to fortunate marriages, they married between themselves to protect their gains.
Philip and Mariana were actually uncle and niece, Charles was not only their son, Charles was physically and mentally disabled and infertile, possibly due to this massive inbreeding. Due to the deaths of his brothers, he was the last member of the male Spanish Habsburg line. Charles did not learn to speak until the age of four nor to walk until eight and his jaw was so badly deformed that he could barely speak or chew. Fearing the frail child would be overtaxed, his caretakers did not force Charles to attend school, the indolence of the young Charles was indulged to such an extent that at times he was not expected to be clean. The only vigorous activity in which Charles is known to have participated was shooting and he occasionally indulged in the sport in the preserves of El Escorial. The years of Charless reign were difficult for Spain, the economy was stagnant, there was hunger in the land, and the power of the monarchy over the various Spanish provinces was extremely weak. Spain’s finances were perpetually in crisis, Charles unfitness for rule meant he was often ignored, and power during his reign became the subject of court intrigues and foreign influence, particularly French and Austrian.
Charles was three years old when his father, Philip IV, died on 17 September 1665, the Council of Castile appointed Philips second wife and Charles mother, Mariana of Austria, regent for the minor king. Charles inherited the Portuguese Restoration War and soon after his accession Spain was plunged into the War of Devolution with France in Spanish Netherlands, as regent, Mariana managed the countrys affairs through a series of favourites, whose merits usually amounted to no more than meeting her fancy. From on he was the de facto prime minister or valido of Spain, the sheer size of the kingdom at that time made this kind of government increasingly damaging to the realms affairs. The treaty ceded the North African enclave of Ceuta to Spain, but marked the loss of Portugal, to end the War of Devolution, Nithard signed the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle. However, the members of the Councils and in particular Charles illegitimate half-brother, in February 1669, a military revolt in Aragon and Catalonia led by Juan José, who proceeded to march toward Madrid, brought about Nithards dismissal
Maria Theresa of Spain
Maria Theresa of Spain, was by birth Infanta of Spain and Portugal and Archduchess of Austria as member of the Spanish branch of the House of Habsburg and by marriage Queen of France and Navarre. Her marriage in 1660 with King Louis XIV was made with the purpose to end the war between France and Spain. Without any political influence in the French court or government, she died at the age of 44 from complications from an abscess on her arm. Born an Infanta of Spain at the Royal Monastery of El Escorial, she was the daughter of King Philip IV, and his wife Elisabeth of France, as a member of the House of Habsburg, Maria Theresa was entitled to use the title Archduchess of Austria. Unlike France, the kingdom of Spain had no Salic Law, when Maria Theresas brother Balthasar Charles died in 1646, she became heiress presumptive to the vast Spanish Empire and remained such until the birth of Philip Prospero, in 1657. She was heiress presumptive once more between 1 November and 6 November 1661– the death of Prince Philip and the birth of Prince Charles, who would inherit the thrones of Spain as Charles II.
In 1658, as war with France began to wind down, anne of Austria desired an end to hostilities between her native country of Spain and her adopted one, France. However, Spanish procrastination led to a scheme in which Frances prime minister, Cardinal Mazarin, pretended to seek a marriage for his master with Margaret Yolande of Savoy. When Philip IV of Spain heard of a meeting at Lyon between the Houses of France and Savoy in November 1658, he reputedly exclaimed of the Franco-Savoyard union that it cannot be, and will not be. Philip sent an envoy to the French court to open negotiations for peace. The negotiations for the contract were intense. This was eventually done but, by the skill of Mazarin and his French diplomats, the renunciation and its validity were made conditional upon the payment of a large dowry. As it turned out, Spain and bankrupt after decades of war, was unable to pay such a dowry, a marriage by proxy to the French king was held in Fuenterrabia. On 9 June the marriage took place in Saint-Jean-de-Luz at the rebuilt church of Saint Jean the Baptist.
After the wedding, Louis wanted to consummate the marriage as quickly as possible, the new queens mother-in-law arranged a private consummation instead of the public one that was the custom. On 26 August 1660, the made the traditional Joyous Entry into Paris. Maria Theresa was very fortunate to have found a friend at court in her mother-in-law and she continued to spend much of her free time playing cards and gambling, as she had no interest in politics or literature. Consequently, she was viewed as not fully playing the part of queen designated to her by her marriage, but more importantly, she became pregnant in early 1661, and a long-awaited son was born on 1 November 1661
Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress
Archduchess Maria of Austria was the spouse of Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia and Hungary. She was the daughter of Emperor Charles V and twice served as regent of Spain, Maria was born in Madrid to Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Spain, and Isabella of Portugal. She grew up mostly between Toledo and Valladolid with her siblings and Joanna and they built a strong family bond despite their fathers regular absences. Maria and her brother, shared similar strong personal views, on 15 September 1548, aged twenty, she married her first cousin Archduke Maximilian. The couple had sixteen children during the course of a twenty-eight-year marriage, while her father was occupied with German affairs and Maximilian acted as regents of Spain from 1548 to 1551 during the absence of Prince Philip. Maria stayed at the Spanish court until August 1551, and in 1552 the couple moved to live at the court of Maximilians father in Vienna. During another absence of her brother, now King Philip II, from 1558 to 1561, Maria was again regent of Spain and returned to Madrid during that time.
After her return to Germany, her husband succeeded his father Ferdinand I as ruler of Germany and Hungary. Maria was a devout Catholic and frequently disagreed with her religiously ambiguous husband and she had great influence over her sons, the future emperors Rudolf and Matthias. Maria returned to Spain in 1582, taking her youngest surviving child Margaret with her, promised to marry Philip II of Spain, Margaret finally refused and took the veil as a Poor Clare. Commenting that she was happy to live in a country without heretics, Maria settled in the Convent of Las Descalzas Reales in Madrid. She was the patron of the noted Spanish composer Tomás Luis de Victoria, Maria exerted some influence together with Queen Margaret, the wife of Philip III of Spain. Margaret, the sister of the future Emperor Ferdinand II, would be one of three women at Philips court who would apply considerable influence over the king, Margaret continued to fight an ongoing battle with Lerma for influence until her death in 1611.
Philip had an affectionate, close relationship with Margaret, and paid her additional attention after she bore him a son, named Philip and they were successful, for example, in convincing Philip to provide financial support to Ferdinand from 1600 onwards. Philip steadily acquired other religious advisors
Margaret Theresa of Spain
Margaret Theresa of Spain, was by marriage Holy Roman Empress, German Queen, Archduchess consort of Austria, Queen consort of Hungary and Bohemia. Margaret Theresa was born on 12 July 1651 in Madrid as the first child of King Philip IV of Spain born from his marriage with his niece Archduchess Mariana of Austria. Because of this marriage, Margarets mother was nearly thirty years younger than her father. On her fathers side, Margarets grandparents were King Philip III of Spain, on her mothers side her grandparents were Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor and his wife Infanta Maria Anna of Spain. The marriage of her parents was purely made for reasons, mainly the search for a new male heir for the Spanish throne after the early death of Balthasar Charles. Besides him, the only surviving child of Philip IVs first marriage was the Infanta Maria Theresa. After Margaret, between 1655 and 1661, four children were born from the marriage between Philip IV and Mariana of Austria, but only one survived infancy, the future King Charles II of Spain.
Margaret didnt develop the health issues and disabilities that her younger brother showed since his birth. During her childhood she was seriously ill, but survived. According to contemporaries, Margaret had an appearance and lively character. Her parents and close friends called her the little angel and she grew up in the Queens chambers in the Royal Alcazar of Madrid surrounded by many maids and servants. The Infanta loved candies, which she hid from the physicians who cared for the health of her teeth. Margarets father and maternal grandfather Emperor Ferdinand III love her deeply, in his private letters King Philip IV called her my joy. At the same time, Margaret was brought up in accordance with the etiquette of the Madrid court. In the second half of the 1650s at the court in Vienna the necessity developed for another dynastic marriage between the Spanish and Austrian branches of the House of Habsburg. The union was needed to strengthen the position of countries, especially against the Kingdom of France.
At first the proposals were for Maria Theresa, the eldest daughter of Philip IV, to marry the heir of the Holy Roman Empire, began discussion about a marriage between Margaret and the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold I. However, the Madrid court hesitated to agree with this proposal, Philip IV already planned to give his younger daughter in marriage to King Charles II of England, in order to prevent his marriage with Catherine of Braganza
A priest or priestess, is a person authorized to perform the sacred rituals of a religion, especially as a mediatory agent between humans and one or more deities. They have the authority or power to administer religious rites, in particular, rites of sacrifice to, and propitiation of and their office or position is the priesthood, a term which may apply to such persons collectively. The necessity to read sacred texts and keep temple or church records helped foster literacy in early societies. Priests exist in many religions today, such as all or some branches of Judaism, the question of which religions have a priest depends on how the titles of leaders are used or translated into English. In some cases, leaders are more like those that other believers will often turn to for advice on spiritual matters, for example, clergy in Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy are priests, but in Protestant Christianity they are typically minister and pastor. The terms priest and priestess are sufficiently generic that they may be used in a sense to describe the religious mediators of an unknown or otherwise unspecified religion.
In many religions, being a priest or priestess is a full-time position, many Christian priests and pastors choose or are mandated to dedicate themselves to their churches and receive their living directly from their churches. In other cases it is a part-time role, for example, in the early history of Iceland the chieftains were titled goði, a word meaning priest. In some religions, being a priest or priestess is by election or human choice. In Judaism the priesthood is inherited in familial lines, in a theocracy, a society is governed by its priesthood. The word priest, is derived from Greek, via Latin presbyter. Old High German has the disyllabic priester, apparently derived from Latin independently via Old French presbtre, the Latin presbyter ultimately represents Greek presbyteros, the regular Latin word for priest being sacerdos, corresponding to Greek hiereus. That English should have only the term priest to translate presbyter. The feminine English noun, was coined in the 17th century, in the 20th century, the word was used in controversies surrounding the ordination of women.
In the case of the ordination of women in the Anglican communion, it is common to speak of priests. In historical polytheism, a priest administers the sacrifice to a deity, in the Ancient Near East, the priesthood acted on behalf of the deities in managing their property. Priestesses in antiquity often performed sacred prostitution, and in Ancient Greece, some such as Pythia, priestess at Delphi. Sumerian and Akkadian Entu or EN were top-ranking priestesses who were distinguished with special ceremonial attire and they owned property, transacted business, and initiated the hieros gamos ceremony with priests and kings
Infanta Catherine Michelle of Spain
Catherine Michelle of Spain was a Duchess consort of Savoy by marriage to Charles Emmanuel I, Duke of Savoy, she served as Regent of Savoy several times during the absence of her spouse. She was the youngest surviving daughter of Philip II of Spain and Elisabeth of Valois, she was the sister of Isabella Clara Eugenia, catherine Michelle was described as beautiful, intelligent and well aware of her high social status. She had a relationship with her father and exchanged letters with him after her marriage. Charles Emmanuel I suggested the marriage as a way of gaining Spanish support for his plans to expand Savoy on the coast of the weakened France, the wedding took place in Zaragoza on 11 March 1585 and the couple made their entrance to Turin in Savoy 10 August 1585. Catherine Michelle was initially unpopular because of her arrogance and attempts to introduce Spanish pomp, however, she soon gained respect because of her political and diplomatic skill, which she used to defend the autonomy of Savoy against Spain.
She refused the Spanish offer to install a Spanish garrison in Turin from Milan with the excuse of giving her a life guard and she is reported to have had great influence on Charles Emmanuel I and to have reformed him for the better. She served as regent several times during the absence of the duke on military campaigns, catherine Michelle died near the end of 1597, she had miscarried earlier that year. Her father died the following year and her sister Isabella married Albert VII, Archduke of Austria, and became Governess of the Netherlands. In 1584, she married Charles Emmanuel I, Duke of Savoy and this marriage produced ten children, Philip Emanuel Victor Amadeus Emanuel Filibert of Savoy, Spanish Viceroy of Sicily
Brussels, officially the Brussels-Capital Region, is a region of Belgium comprising 19 municipalities, including the City of Brussels which is the capital of Belgium. The Brussels-Capital Region is a part of both the French Community of Belgium and the Flemish Community, but is separate from the region of Flanders or Wallonia. The region has a population of 1.2 million and an area with a population of over 1.8 million. Brussels is the de facto capital of the European Union as it hosts a number of principal EU institutions, the secretariat of the Benelux and the headquarters of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization are located in Brussels. Today, it is considered an Alpha global city, historically a Dutch-speaking city, Brussels has seen a language shift to French from the late 19th century onwards. Today, the majority language is French, and the Brussels-Capital Region is a bilingual enclave within the Flemish Region. All road signs, street names, and many advertisements and services are shown in both languages, Brussels is increasingly becoming multilingual with increasing numbers of migrants and minority groups speaking their own languages.
The most common theory of the origin of Brussels name is that it derives from the Old Dutch Broekzele or Broeksel, meaning marsh, Saint Vindicianus, the bishop of Cambrai made the first recorded reference to the place Brosella in 695 when it was still a hamlet. The origin of the settlement that was to become Brussels lies in Saint Gaugericus construction of a chapel on an island in the river Senne around 580. The official founding of Brussels is usually situated around 979, when Duke Charles of Lower Lotharingia transferred the relics of Saint Gudula from Moorsel to the Saint Gaugericus chapel, Charles would construct the first permanent fortification in the city, doing so on that same island. Lambert I of Leuven, Count of Leuven gained the County of Brussels around 1000 by marrying Charles daughter, as it grew to a population of around 30,000, the surrounding marshes were drained to allow for further expansion. The Counts of Leuven became Dukes of Brabant at about this time, in the 13th century, the city got its first walls.
After the construction of the city walls in the early 13th century, to let the city expand, a second set of walls was erected between 1356 and 1383. Today, traces of it can still be seen, mostly because the small ring, Brabant had lost its independence, but Brussels became the Princely Capital of the prosperous Low Countries, and flourished. In 1516 Charles V, who had been heir of the Low Countries since 1506, was declared King of Spain in St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral in Brussels. Upon the death of his grandfather, Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor in 1519 and it was in the Palace complex at Coudenberg that Charles V abdicated in 1555. This impressive palace, famous all over Europe, had expanded since it had first become the seat of the Dukes of Brabant. In 1695, during the Nine Years War, King Louis XIV of France sent troops to bombard Brussels with artillery, together with the resulting fire, it was the most destructive event in the entire history of Brussels
Habsburg Spain refers to the history of Spain over the 16th and 17th centuries, when it was ruled by kings from the House of Habsburg. The Habsburg rulers reached the zenith of their influence and power and this period of Spanish history has been referred to as the Age of Expansion. The Habsburg years were a Spanish Golden Age of cultural efflorescence, in some cases, these individual kingdoms themselves were confederations, most notably, the Crown of Aragon. Isabella and Ferdinand were bestowed the title of Most Catholic Monarchs by Pope Alexander VI in 1496, the Habsburg period is formative of the notion of Spain in the sense that was institutionalized in the 18th century. Her husband Philip I was the Habsburg son of the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I, shortly thereafter Joanna began to lapse into insanity, though how mentally ill she actually was the topic of some debate. In 1506, Philip I was declared jure uxoris king, but he died that year under mysterious circumstances, possibly poisoned by his father-in-law, Ferdinand II.
Since their oldest son Charles was only six, the Cortes reluctantly allowed Joannas father Ferdinand II to rule the country as the regent of Joanna, Spain was now in personal union under Ferdinand II of Aragon. He attempted to enlarge Spains sphere of influence in Italy, as ruler of Aragon, Ferdinand had been involved in the struggle against France and the Republic of Venice for control of Italy, these conflicts became the center of Ferdinands foreign policy as king. The war was less of a success than that against Venice, Ferdinand would die that year. Ferdinands death led to the ascension of young Charles to the throne as Charles I of Castile and Aragon and his Spanish inheritance included all the Spanish possessions in the New World and around the Mediterranean. Upon the death of his Habsburg father in 1506, Charles had inherited the Netherlands and Franche-Comté, in 1519, with the death of his paternal grandfather Maximilian I, Charles inherited the Habsburg territories in Germany, and was duly elected as Holy Roman Emperor that year.
At that point and King Charles was the most powerful man in Christendom, the accumulation of so much power by one man and one dynasty greatly concerned Francis I of France, who found himself surrounded by Habsburg territories. In 1521 Francis invaded the Spanish possessions in Italy and Navarre, the war was a disaster for France, which suffered defeats at Biccoca and Landriano before Francis relented and abandoned Milan to Spain once more. Charless victory at the Battle of Pavia surprised many Italians and Germans, Pope Clement VII switched sides and now joined forces with France and prominent Italian states against the Habsburg Emperor, in the War of the League of Cognac. Henry VIII of England, who bore a grudge against France than he held against the Emperor for standing in the way of his divorce. Although the Spanish army was defeated at the Battle of Ceresole, in Savoy Henry fared better. The Austrians, led by Charless younger brother Ferdinand, continued to fight the Ottomans in the east, with France defeated, Charles went to take care of an older problem, the Schmalkaldic League.
The Protestant Reformation had begun in Germany in 1517, the German Peasants War broke out in Germany in 1524 and ravaged the country until it was brutally put down in 1526, even as far away from Germany as he was, was committed to keeping order