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Henri IV - An unfinished reign

Glossary

Marguerite de Navarre

1493-1549

Marguerite de Navarre, originally known as Marguerite d’Angoulême, was the sister of François I. She was duchesse de Berry (1517) and of Alençon (1525) before becoming queen of Navarre through her marriage (her second) to Henri II d’Albret (1527). In 1528, she gave birth to Jeanne d’Albret, the future mother of Henri IV. Marguerite de Navarre was a highly cultivated woman who left behind a considerable literary oeuvre, including an incomplete collection of 72 short stories entitled L’Heptaméron. Long before Henri de Navarre and Marguerite de Valois, she made Nérac a haven for "unwelcome opinions about the faith", and sought very early on to reconcile the Catholic Church with both the Protestant reform movement and the reformers. Gérard Roussel, Clément Marot, Lefèvre d’Étaples, Calvin and Théodore de Bèze all sought refuge in the small city of Albret, finding shelter from persecution under the protection of Marguerite de Navarre.

Portrait of Marguerite de Navarre
© RMN / René-Gabriel Ojéda
Caption:
Marguerite d'Angoulême, queen of Navarre (1492-1549), wife of Henri d'Albret, king of Navarre, painting, French School, 1544. Musée Condé de Chantilly, PE262



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