Claude of France
Claude of France, was Sovereign Duchess of the Duchy of Brittany after her mother and Queen of France by marriage to Francis I. Claude was born on 13 October 1499 in Romorantin-Lanthenay as the eldest daughter of Louis XII of France, because her mother had no surviving sons, Claude became heiress to the Duchy of Brittany. The crown of France, could only to and through male heirs. Eager to keep Brittany separated from the French crown, Queen Anne, with help of Cardinal Georges dAmboise, promoted a solution for this problem. A part of the contract promised the inheritance of Brittany to the prince, already the next in line to thrones of Castile and Aragon, Austria. Thus, all the causes of the rivalry between Charles V and Francis I were decided even before the succession of the two princes. Indeed, previously Louise of Savoy obtained from the king a secret promise that Claude could be married to her son, Anne of Brittany, furious to see the triumph of Marshal of Gié, exerted all her influence to obtain his conviction for treason before the Parliament of Paris.
On 9 January 1514, when her died, Claude became Duchess of Brittany. With this union, it was secured that Brittany would remain united to the French crown, the union was short-lived and childless, Louis XII died less than three months later, on 1 January 1515, reputedly worn out by his exertions in the bedchamber. Francis and Claude became king and queen, the time in history that the Duchess of Brittany became Queen of France. As Queen, Claude was eclipsed at court by her mother-in-law, Louise of Savoy, and her sister-in-law and she never ruled over Brittany, in 1515 she gave the government of her domains to her husband in perpetuity. Gabriel Miron repeated his functions under Anne of Brittany and remained as Chancellor of Queen Claude and first doctor, after Francis became king in 1515, Anne Boleyn stayed as a member of Claudes household. Its assumed that Anne served as Claudes translator whenever there were English visitors, such as in 1520, Anne Boleyn returned to England in late 1521, where she eventually became Queen of England as the second wife of Henry VIII.
Diane de Poitiers, another of Claudes ladies, was an inspiration of the School of Fontainebleau of the French Renaissance. Claude was crowned Queen of France at St. Denis Basilica on 10 May 1517 by Cardinal Philippe de Luxembourg and she spent almost all her marriage in an endless round of annual pregnancies. Her husband had mistresses, but was usually relatively discreet. Claude imposed a moral code on her own household, which only a few chose to flout. Both Duchies joined in all good deed to our beautiful kingdom, the pawn of so much dynastic maneuvering, Claude was short in stature and afflicted with scoliosis, which gave her a hunched back, while her husband was bigger and athletic
Henry IV of France
Henry IV, known by the epithet Good King Henry, was King of Navarre from 1572 to 1610 and King of France from 1589 to 1610. He was the first French monarch of the House of Bourbon, baptised as a Catholic but raised in the Protestant faith by his mother Jeanne dAlbret, Queen of Navarre, he inherited the throne of Navarre in 1572 on the death of his mother. As a Huguenot, Henry was involved in the French Wars of Religion, barely escaping assassination in the St. Bartholomews Day massacre, and led Protestant forces against the royal army. Henry, as Head of the House of Bourbon, was a direct descendant of Louis IX of France. Upon the death of his brother-in-law and distant cousin Henry III of France in 1589 and he initially kept the Protestant faith and had to fight against the Catholic League, which denied that he could wear Frances crown as a Protestant. To obtain mastery over his kingdom, after four years of stalemate, as a pragmatic politician, he displayed an unusual religious tolerance for the era.
Notably, he promulgated the Edict of Nantes, which guaranteed religious liberties to Protestants and he was assassinated in 1610 by François Ravaillac, a fanatical Catholic, and was succeeded by his son Louis XIII. Considered a usurper by some Catholics and a traitor by some Protestants, an unpopular king immediately after his accession, Henrys popularity greatly improved after his death, in light of repeated victories over his enemies and his conversion to Catholicism. The Good King Henry was remembered for his geniality and his concern about the welfare of his subjects. He was celebrated in the popular song Vive le roi Henri, Henry was born in Pau, the capital of the joint Kingdom of Navarre with the sovereign principality of Béarn. His parents were Queen Joan III of Navarre and her consort, Antoine de Bourbon, Duke of Vendôme, although baptised as a Roman Catholic, Henry was raised as a Protestant by his mother, who had declared Calvinism the religion of Navarre. As a teenager, Henry joined the Huguenot forces in the French Wars of Religion, on 9 June 1572, upon his mothers death, he became King of Navarre.
At Queen Joans death, it was arranged for Henry to marry Margaret of Valois, daughter of Henry II, the wedding took place in Paris on 18 August 1572 on the parvis of Notre Dame Cathedral. On 24 August, the Saint Bartholomews Day Massacre began in Paris, several thousand Protestants who had come to Paris for Henrys wedding were killed, as well as thousands more throughout the country in the days that followed. Henry narrowly escaped death thanks to the help of his wife and he was made to live at the court of France, but he escaped in early 1576. On 5 February of that year, he formally abjured Catholicism at Tours and he named his 16-year-old sister, Catherine de Bourbon, regent of Béarn. Catherine held the regency for nearly thirty years, Henry became heir presumptive to the French throne in 1584 upon the death of Francis, Duke of Anjou and heir to the Catholic Henry III, who had succeeded Charles IX in 1574. Because Henry of Navarre was the senior agnatic descendant of King Louis IX, King Henry III had no choice
Francis II of France
Francis II was a monarch of the House of Valois-Angoulême who was King of France from 1559 to 1560. He was King consort of Scotland as a result of his marriage to Mary, Queen of Scots. He ascended the throne of France at the age of fifteen after the death of his father, Henry II. His short reign was dominated by the first stirrings of the French Wars of Religion and they were unable to help Catholics in Scotland against the progressing Scottish Reformation and the Auld Alliance was dissolved. Francis was succeeded by two of his brothers in turn, both of whom were unable to reduce tensions between Protestants and Catholics. Born eleven years after his parents wedding, Francis was named for his grandfather and he was baptized on 10 February 1544 at the Chapelle des Trinitaires in Fontainebleau. His godparents were Francis I, Pope Paul III, and his great-aunt Marguerite de Navarre and he became governor of Languedoc in 1546, and Dauphin of France in 1547, when his grandfather Francis I died. Franciss governor was Jean dHumières and his tutor was Pierre Danès and he learned dancing from Virgilio Bracesco and fencing from Hector of Mantua.
King Henry II, his father, arranged a betrothal for his son to Mary, Queen of Scots, in the Châtillon agreement of 27 January 1548. Mary had been crowned Queen of Scots in Stirling Castle on 9 September 1543 at the age of nine following the death of her father James V. Besides being the queen of Scotland, Mary was a granddaughter of Claude, Duke of Guise, once the marriage agreement was formally ratified, the six-year-old Mary was sent to France to be raised at court until the marriage. On 24 April 1558, the fourteen-year-old Dauphin married the Queen of Scots in Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. It was a union that could have given the kings of France the throne of Scotland and a claim to the throne of England through Marys great grandfather. Until his death, Francis held the title King of Scotland and Francis were to have no children during their short marriage, possibly due to Francis illnesses or his undescended testicles. A little over a year after his marriage, on 10 July 1559, Francis became king at the age of fifteen upon the death of his father Henry II, on 21 September 1559, Francis II was crowned king in Reims by his uncle Charles, Cardinal of Lorraine.
The crown was so heavy that nobles had to hold it in place for him, the court moved to the Loire Valley, where the Château de Blois and the surrounding forests were the new kings home. Francis II took the sun for his emblem and for his mottoes Spectanda fides, according to French law, Francis at the age of fifteen was an adult who in theory did not need a regent. But since he was young, and in health, he delegated his power to his wifes uncles from the noble House of Guise, François, Duke of Guise
According to Christian tradition, Saint Denis is a Christian martyr and saint. In the third century, he was Bishop of Paris and he was martyred, with his companions Rusticus and Eleutherius, in connection with the Decian persecution of Christians, shortly after 250 AD. Denis is said to have picked his head up after being decapitated, walked ten kilometres, while preaching a sermon of repentance the entire way and he is venerated in the Roman Catholic Church as patron of Paris, and as one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers. The medieval and modern French name Denis derives from the ancient name Dionysius, gregory of Tours states that Denis was bishop of the Parisii and was martyred by being beheaded by a sword. The earliest document giving an account of his life and martyrdom, dionysii Rustici et Eleutherii dates from c. 600, is attributed to the poet Venantius Fortunatus, and is legendary. There Denis was appointed first Bishop of Paris, the persecutions under Emperor Decius had all but dissolved the small Christian community at Lutetia.
Denis and his companions were so effective in converting people that the non-Christian priests became alarmed over their loss of followers, at their instigation, Roman Governor arrested the missionaries. After a long imprisonment and two of his clergy were executed by beheading on the highest hill in Paris, which was likely to have been a holy place. Of the many accounts of martyrdom, this is noted in detail in the Golden Legend. The site where he stopped preaching and actually died was marked by a shrine that developed into the Saint Denis Basilica. Another account has his corpse being thrown into the Seine, veneration of Saint Denis began soon after his death. Her Vita Sanctae Genovefae attests the presence of a shrine near the present basilica by the close of the fifth century, dagobert I, great-grandson of Chlothar I had the first Royal Basilica built. The Merovingian tradition was originally to bury kings as Clovis and Chlothildis in Paris, yet Chilperic I had his own mother Dowager Queen Aregunda at Saint Denis.
His grandson was clearly following a family tradition, aregundas tomb was discovered in 1959 and her burial items can be seen at Saint-Germain-en-Laye museum. A successor church was erected by Fulrad, who became abbot in 749/50 and was linked with the accession of the Carolingians to the Merovingian throne. In time, the Saint Denis, often combined as Montjoie, Saint Denis. became the war-cry of the French armies. The oriflamme, which became the standard of France, was the banner consecrated upon his tomb and his veneration spread beyond France when, in 754, Pope Stephen II, who was French, brought veneration of Saint Denis to Rome
Henrietta of England
Henrietta of England was the youngest daughter of King Charles I of England and Ireland and his wife, Henrietta Maria of France. Fleeing England with her governess at the age of three, she moved to the court of her first cousin Louis XIV of France, where she was known as Minette. After she married Philippe of France, brother of King Louis XIV, known as Monsieur at court and her marriage was marked by frequent tensions. Henrietta was instrumental in negotiating the Secret Treaty of Dover, in June 1670 – early in the month as her unexpected death. Jacobite claims to the throne of Great Britain following the death of Henry Benedict Stuart descend from her through her daughter Anne Marie and her father was King Charles I of England, her mother the youngest daughter of Henry IV of France and Marie de Medici. All her life, Henrietta would enjoy a relationship with her mother. Her connections with the court of France as niece of King Louis XIII, shortly before the birth of Henrietta, her mother had been forced to leave Oxford for Exeter, where she had arrived on 1 May 1644.
Many thought she would not survive the birth due to her state of health at the time, after a particularly difficult birth, the princess was put in the care of Anne Villiers, Countess of Morton, known at that time as Lady Dalkeith. For the safety of the infant princess, the decided to make her way to Falmouth. Arriving at Falmouth in mid-July, the queen was informed that the infant princess had been ill with convulsions. On 26 July, Henrietta met her father, Charles I of England, prior to his arrival, the king had ordered that the princess would be baptised in accordance with the rites of the Church of England, and she was baptised Henrietta at Exeter Cathedral on 21 July. A canopy of state was erected in honour of her dignity as a Princess of England, while living at the French court, the princess was given the name Anne in honour of her aunt, the French queen Anne of Austria. When she first arrived, she was known as Henrietta dAngleterre or the princesse dAngleterre in France and she and her mother were given apartments at the Louvre, a monthly pension of 30,000 livres and the use of the Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye.
This lavish establishment soon diminished as all the money Queen Henrietta Maria received was given to her husband in England or to exiled cavaliers who had fled to France. During the Fronde, the war that raged in France between 1648 and 1653, Henrietta and her mother stayed at the Louvre. In February 1649, Henriettas mother was informed of the execution of her husband Charles I, at the end of the Fronde, Queen Henrietta Maria and her daughter moved into the Palais Royal with the young Louis XIV and his mother and brother Philippe. At the same time, Queen Henrietta Maria decided to have her daughter, with the arrival of Henriettas brother, Henry Stuart, Duke of Gloucester, in 1652, their small court was increased. After the Fronde was over, the French court made it a priority to find a bride for the king of France
Charles Martel was a Frankish statesman and military leader who as Duke and Prince of the Franks and Mayor of the Palace, was de facto ruler of Francia from 718 until his death. After work to establish a unity in Gaul, Charles attention was called to foreign conflicts, apart from the military endeavours, Charles is considered to be a founding figure of the European Middle Ages. Moreover, Charles—a great patron of Saint Boniface—made the first attempt at reconciliation between the Franks and the Papacy. Pope Gregory III, whose realm was being menaced by the Lombards, wished Charles to become the defender of the Holy See and offered him the Roman consulship and he divided Francia between his sons Carloman and Pepin. The latter became the first of the Carolingians, Charles grandson, extended the Frankish realms to include much of the West, and became the first Emperor in the West since the fall of Rome. Charles The Hammer Martel was the son of Pepin of Herstal and he had a brother named Childebrand, who became the Frankish dux of Burgundy.
In older historiography, it was common to describe Charles as illegitimate and this is still widely repeated in popular culture today. But, polygamy was a legitimate Frankish practice at the time and it is likely that the interpretation of illegitimacy is an idea derived of Pepins first wifes desire to see her progeny as heirs to Pepins power. After the reign of Dagobert I the Merovingians effectively ceded power to the Pippinids and they controlled the royal treasury, dispensed patronage, and granted land and privileges in the name of the figurehead king. Charles father, was the member of the family to rule the Franks. Pepin was able to all the Frankish realms by conquering Neustria. He was the first to call himself Duke and Prince of the Franks, in December 714, Pepin of Herstal died. Prior to his death, he had, at his wife Plectrudes urging, designated Theudoald, his grandson by their late son Grimoald and this was immediately opposed by the nobles because Theudoald was a child of only eight years of age.
To prevent Charles using this unrest to his own advantage, Plectrude had him imprisoned in Cologne and this prevented an uprising on his behalf in Austrasia, but not in Neustria. The Austrasians were not to be supporting a woman and a young child. Before the end of the year, Charles Martel had escaped from prison and that year, Dagobert III, a Merovingian and the Neustrians proclaimed Chilperic II, the cloistered son of Childeric II, as king. In 716, Chilperic and Ragenfrid together led an army into Austrasia, the Neustrians allied with another invading force under Radbod, King of the Frisians and met Charles in battle near Cologne, which was still held by Plectrude. Charles had little time to gather men, or prepare, the king and his mayor besieged Plectrude at Cologne, where she bought them off with a substantial portion of Pepins treasure
Bertrand du Guesclin
Bertrand du Guesclin, nicknamed The Eagle of Brittany or The Black Dog of Brocéliande, was a Breton knight and French military commander during the Hundred Years War. He was Constable of France from 1370 to his death, well known for his Fabian strategy, he took part in six pitched battles and won the four in which he held command. Bertrand du Guesclin was born at Motte-Broons near Dinan, in Brittany, first-born son of Robert du Guesclin and his date of birth is unknown but is thought to have been sometime in 1320. His family was of minor Breton nobility, the seigneurs of Broons and he initially served Charles of Blois in the Breton War of Succession. Charles was supported by the French crown, while his rival, Du Guesclin was knighted in 1354 while serving Arnoul dAudrehem, after countering a raid by Hugh Calveley on the Castle of Montmuran. In 1356–57, Du Guesclin successfully defended Rennes against an English siege by Henry of Grosmont, during the siege, he killed the English knight William Bamborough who had challenged him to a duel.
The resistance of du Guesclin helped restore French morale after Poitiers, when he became King in 1364, Charles sent Du Guesclin to deal with Charles II of Navarre, who hoped to claim the Duchy of Burgundy, which Charles hoped to give to his brother, Philip. On 16 May, he met an Anglo-Navarrese army under the command of Jean de Grailly, Captal de Buch at Cocherel, the victory forced Charles II into a new peace with the French king, and secured Burgundy for Philip. On 29 September 1364, at the Battle of Auray, the army of Charles of Blois was heavily defeated by John IV, Duke of Brittany, de Blois was killed in action, ending the pretensions of the Penthievre faction in Brittany. After chivalric resistance, Du Guesclin broke his weapons to signify his surrender and he was captured and ransomed by Charles V for 100,000 francs. In 1366, du Guesclin, with Guillaume Boitel, his companion, leader of his vanguard. Bertrands elevation must have taken place at Burgos between 16 March and 5 April 1366, but Henrys army was defeated in 1367 by Pedros forces, now commanded by Edward, the Black Prince, at Nájera.
Du Guesclin was again captured, and again ransomed by Charles V, the English army suffered badly in the battle as four English soldiers out of five died during the Castilian Campaign. The Black Prince, affected by dysentery, soon withdrew his support from Pedro, Du Guesclin and Henry of Trastámara renewed the attack, defeating him at the decisive Battle of Montiel. After the battle, Pedro fled to the castle at Montiel, from whence he made contact with du Guesclin, Pedro bribed du Guesclin to obtain escape. Du Guesclin agreed, but told it to Henry who promised him more money, once there, after crossed accusations of bastardy the two half-brothers started a fight to death, using daggers because of the narrow space. At a moment when they fought on the floor, Pedro got the upper side and was about to finish Henry, but Du Guesclin, who had stayed inactive for he was compromised to both, made his final choice. He grabbed Pedro´s ankle and turned him belly-up, thus allowing Henry to stab Pedro to death, Bertrand was made Duke of Molina, and the Franco-Castllian alliance was sealed
Henry II of France
Henry II was a monarch of the House of Valois who ruled as King of France from 31 March 1547 until his death in 1559. The second son of Francis I, he became Dauphin of France upon the death of his elder brother Francis III, Duke of Brittany, as a child and his elder brother spent over four years in captivity in Spain as hostages in exchange for their father. Henry pursued his fathers policies in matter of arts, wars and he persevered in the Italian Wars against the House of Habsburg and tried to suppress the Protestant Reformation, even as the Huguenot numbers were increasing drastically in France during his reign. Henry suffered a death in a jousting tournament held to celebrate the Peace of Cateau-Cambrésis at the conclusion of the Eighth Italian War. The kings surgeon, Ambroise Paré, was unable to cure the infected wound inflicted by Gabriel de Montgomery and he was succeeded in turn by three of his sons, whose ineffective reigns helped to spark the French Wars of Religion between Protestants and Catholics.
Henry was born in the royal Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye, near Paris and his father was captured at the Battle of Pavia in 1525 by the forces of his sworn enemy, Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, and held prisoner in Spain. To obtain his release, it was agreed that Henry and his brother be sent to Spain in his place. They remained in captivity for four years. Henry married Catherine de Medici, a member of the family of Florence, on 28 October 1533. The following year, he became involved with a thirty-five-year-old widow. They had always very close, she had publicly embraced him on the day he set off to Spain. Diane became Henrys mistress and most trusted confidante and, for the next years, wielded considerable influence behind the scenes. Extremely confident and intelligent, she left Catherine powerless to intervene and she did, insist that Henry sleep with Catherine in order to produce heirs to the throne. When his elder brother Francis, the Dauphin and Duke of Brittany, died in 1536 after a game of tennis and he succeeded his father on his 28th birthday and was crowned King of France on 25 July 1547 at Reims Cathedral.
Henrys reign was marked by wars with Austria and the persecution of Protestants, Henry II severely punished them, particularly the ministers, for example by burning at the stake or cutting off their tongues for uttering heresies. Even those only suspected of being Huguenots could be imprisoned and it strictly regulated publications by prohibiting the sale, importation or printing of any unapproved book. It was during the reign of Henry II that Huguenot attempts at establishing a colony in Brazil were made, persecution of Protestants at home did not prevent Henry II from becoming allied with German Protestant princes at the Treaty of Chambord in 1552. Simultaneously, the continuation of his fathers Franco-Ottoman alliance allowed Henry II to push for French conquests towards the Rhine while a Franco-Ottoman fleet defended southern France, an early offensive into Lorraine was successful
Charles the Bald
Charles the Bald was the King of West Francia, King of Italy and Holy Roman Emperor. After a series of wars during the reign of his father, Louis the Pious. He was a grandson of Charlemagne and the youngest son of Louis the Pious by his second wife and he was born on 13 June 823 in Frankfurt, when his elder brothers were already adults and had been assigned their own regna, or subkingdoms, by their father. The attempts made by Louis the Pious to assign Charles a subkingdom, first Alemannia, at a diet in Aachen in 837, Louis the Pious bade the nobles do homage to Charles as his heir. Pepin of Aquitaine died in 838, whereupon Charles at last received that kingdom, which angered Pepins heirs, the death of the emperor in 840 led to the outbreak of war between his sons. In the following year, the two confirmed their alliance by the celebrated Oaths of Strasbourg. The war was brought to an end by the Treaty of Verdun in August 843, Louis received the eastern part of the Carolingian Empire, known as East Francia and as Germany.
Lothair retained the title and the Kingdom of Italy. He received the regions from Flanders through the Rhineland. The first years of Charless reign, up to the death of Lothair I in 855, were comparatively peaceful, during these years the three brothers continued the system of confraternal government, meeting repeatedly with one another, at Koblenz, at Meerssen, and at Attigny. In 858, Louis the German, invited by disaffected nobles eager to oust Charles, Charles was so unpopular that he was unable to summon an army, and he fled to Burgundy. He was saved only by the support of the bishops, who refused to crown Louis the German king, and by the fidelity of the Welfs, in 860, he in his turn tried to seize the kingdom of his nephew, Charles of Provence, but was repulsed. On the death of his nephew Lothair II in 869, Charles tried to seize Lothairs dominions, besides these family disputes, Charles had to struggle against repeated rebellions in Aquitaine and against the Bretons. Led by their chiefs Nomenoë and Erispoë, who defeated the king at the Battle of Ballon and the Battle of Jengland, the Bretons were successful in obtaining a de facto independence.
Charles fought against the Vikings, who devastated the country of the north, the valleys of the Seine and Loire, at the Vikings successful siege and sack of Paris in 845 and several times thereafter Charles was forced to purchase their retreat at a heavy price. By the same edict, he ordered fortified bridges to be put up at all rivers to block the Viking incursions, two of these bridges at Paris saved the city during its siege of 885–886. In 875, after the death of the Emperor Louis II, Charles the Bald, supported by Pope John VIII, traveled to Italy, receiving the crown at Pavia. Louis the German, a candidate for the succession of Louis II, revenged himself by invading and devastating Charles dominions, and Charles had to return hastily to West Francia
Francis, Duke of Anjou
Francis, Duke of Anjou and Alençon was the youngest son of Henry II of France and Catherine de Medici. An attractive child, he was scarred by smallpox at age eight and he changed his name to Francis in honour of his late brother Francis II of France when he was confirmed. In 1574, following the death of his brother Charles IX of France, in 1576, he was made Duke of Anjou and Berry. In 1576, he negotiated the Edict of Beaulieu during the French Wars of Religion, in 1579, he was invited by William the Silent to become hereditary sovereign to the United Provinces. On 29 September 1580, the Dutch States General signed the Treaty of Plessis-les-Tours with the Duke, during the night of 15 September 1575, Alençon ran from the French court after being alienated by his brother King Henry III. Both Henry III and Catherine de Medici feared he would join the Protestant rebels and these fears proved well founded, Francis joined the prince of Condé and his forces in the south. By ‘secret treaties’ that formed part of this settlement, many on the Protestant side were rewarded with land.
Francis was awarded the Duchy of Anjou and thus became the Duke of Anjou, at the same time, in 1579, arrangements began to be made for marrying him to Elizabeth I of England. Alençon, now Duke of Anjou, was in fact the one of Elizabeths foreign suitors to court her in person. He was 24 and Elizabeth was 46, despite the age gap, the two soon became very close, Elizabeth dubbing him her frog. Queen Elizabeth often used unflattering slang names for her favourites such as pygmy for Robert Cecil who was short of stature, her use of the slang name frog was consistent with her habits. Whether or not Elizabeth truly planned marrying Anjou is a debated topic. It is obvious that she was fond of him, knowing that he was probably going to be her last suitor. There are many anecdotes about their flirting, the match was controversial in the English public, English Protestants warned the Queen that the hearts will be galled when they shall see you take to husband a Frenchman, and a Papist. The very common people well know this, that he is the son of the Jezebel of our age, referring to the Dukes mother, Catherine de Medici.
Of her Privy Council, only William Cecil, Lord Burghley, most notable councillors, foremost among them Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester, and Sir Francis Walsingham, were strongly opposed, even warning the Queen of the hazards of childbirth at her age. In these years Walsingham became friends with the diplomat of Henry of Navarre in England and he returned to England without an agreement. Personally, Walsingham opposed the marriage, perhaps to the point of encouraging public opposition, Alençon was a Catholic, and as his elder brother, Henry III, was childless, he was heir to the French throne