Henri, Prince of Condé (1588–1646)

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Henri II de Bourbon
HenriIIdeBourbon-Conde.jpg
Prince of Condé
Tenure 5 March 1588 – 26 December 1646
Predecessor Henri I, Prince of Condé
Successor Louis II, Prince of Condé
Born 1 September 1588
Saint-Jean-d'Angély, Saintonge, France.
Died 26 December 1646(1646-12-26) (aged 58)
Hôtel de Condé, Paris, France.
Spouse Charlotte Marguerite de Montmorency
Issue
Detail
Anne Geneviève, Duchess of Longueville
Louis II, Prince of Condé
Armand, Prince of Conti
Full name
Henri de Bourbon
House House of Bourbon-Condé
Father Henri I, Prince of Condé
Mother Charlotte Catherine de La Trémoille
Religion Roman Catholicism
Signature Henri II de Bourbon's signature
Henri, Prince of Condé, Grand Veneur de France

Henri de Bourbon (1 September 1588 – 26 December 1646) was Prince of Condé (as Henri II) for nearly all his life. The head of the senior-most cadet branch of the House of Bourbon, he was heir presumptive to the king of France for the first few years of his life. Henri was the father of Louis, le Grand Condé, the celebrated French general.

Life[edit]

Henri was born in 1588, the third child and only son of Henri I, Prince of Condé. His mother, Charlotte Catherine de La Trémoille, daughter of Louis III de La Trémoille, Duke of Thouars, was the second wife of his father. She was in prison at Saint-Jean-d'Angély at the time, accused of killing her husband.[1] He had two older sisters, namely Catherine de Bourbon, his paternal half-sister who died unwed in 1595, and Éléonore de Bourbon, who in 1606 was married, aged 19, to 51-year-old Philip William, Prince of Orange.

Henri was a posthumous child, his father having died nearly six months before his birth. He therefore became Prince of Condé within weeks of his birth, as soon as he was recognized and confirmed by the king of France.

King Henry III of France died in August 1589, when Henri was less than one year old, and was succeeded by Henry IV of France, who was the first cousin of Henri's late father, and Henri's godfather. At this point, the new king had no son or brother, and his closest agnatic kin was none other than Henri himself. Thus, from being a distant member of the ruling dynasty, Henri became Prince du Sang and heir presumptive to France, and remained so for twelve years, until the birth of the future Louis XIII of France in September 1601. Having just converted to the Catholic Church himself, the king ensured Henri was raised as a Catholic; his father and grandfather had been leaders of the Calvinist Huguenots. Henri's mother was in prison for six years, accused of poisoning her husband; she was later released.

Later, during the years 1611-38, Henri was second-in-line to the throne of France, behind Gaston, Duke of Orleans. This was the period between the death of Nicolas Henri, Duke of Orleans in November 1611 and the birth of the future Louis XIV of France in September 1638.

Marriage and issue[edit]

In 1609, Henri married Charlotte Marguerite de Montmorency,[2] daughter of Henri I de Montmorency, Duke of Montmorency by his second wife, Louise de Budos.[3] In 1610, Marie de Médicis, wife of King Henry IV, gave the Hôtel de Condé in Paris to Henri as part of a recompense for his agreeing to marry Charlotte. From then on, the Hôtel de Condé became the main residence of the Princes of Condé until 1764. Henri and Charlotte were blessed with three children, all of them protagonists of the Fronde, namely:

Reportedly, King Henry IV fancied Charlotte himself, and arranged the marriage with Condé in order to provide cover for an affair. However, Condé would have none of it, and escaped with his wife first to Brussels and later to Milan, both of which were under the rule of the House of Habsburg. The Condé affair became part of the international conflict known as the War of the Jülich Succession (one of the precursors to the Thirty Years' War).

Ancestors[edit]

Henry's ancestors in three generations
Henry II de Bourbon, prince de Condé Father:
Henri I de Bourbon, prince de Condé
Father's father:
Louis I de Bourbon, prince de Condé
Father's father's father:
Charles of Bourbon, Duke of Vendôme
Father's father's mother:
Françoise of Alençon
Father's mother:
Eléanor de Roucy de Roye
Father's mother's father:
Charles de Roye
Father's mother's mother:
Madeleine de Maillé
Mother:
Charlotte Catherine de La Trémoille
Mother's father:
Louis III de La Trémoille
Mother's father's father:
François II de La Trémoille
Mother's father's mother:
Anne de Laval
Mother's mother:
Jeanne de Montmorency
Mother's mother's father:
Anne de Montmorency
Mother's mother's mother:
Madeleine of Savoy

Titles and styles[edit]

  • 1 September 1588 - 26 December 1646 His Serene Highness The Duke of Enghien
  • 26 December 1646 - 26 December 1646 His Serene Highness The Prince of Condé

References[edit]

  1. ^ Collins 2017, p. 122.
  2. ^ Roche 1967, p. 226.
  3. ^ Ward, Prothero & Leathes 1911, p. vii.

Sources[edit]

  • Collins, James (2017). "Dynastic Instability, the Emergence of the French Monarchical Commonwealth and the Coming of the Rhetoric of "L'etat", 1360s to 1650s". In von Friedeburg, Robert; Morrill, John. Monarchy Transformed: Princes and their Elites in Early Modern Western Europe. Cambridge University Press. 
  • Roche, Daniel (1967). "Aperçus sur la fortune et les revenus des princes de Condé à l'aube du XVIIIe siècle". Revue d'histoire moderne et contemporaine Année. Volume 14 Number 3. 
  • Ward, A.W.; Prothero, G.W.; Leathes, Stanley, eds. (1911). The Cambridge Modern History. Cambridge University Press. 
Henri, Prince of Condé (1588–1646)
Cadet branch of the House of Bourbon
Born: 11 September 1588 Died: 26 December 1646
French royalty
Preceded by
Charles, Cardinal de Bourbon
Heir to the Throne
as Heir presumptive
9 May 1590 — 27 September 1601
Succeeded by
Louis, Dauphin of France
French nobility
Preceded by
Henri I de Bourbon
Prince of Condé
5 March 1588 – 26 December 1646
Succeeded by
Louis II de Bourbon
Military offices
Preceded by
Charles de Bourbon,
comte de Soissons
Lieutenant General of New France
1612 – 8 October 1619
Succeeded by
Henri II de Montmorency,
admiral of France