Tag: Naples

The Kingdom of Naples, Part 15: Louis [XII of France] (1501-1504)

Roi_Louis_XII_de_FranceLouis XII (Wikimedia)

Like his predecessor, Charles VIII, King Louis XII of France invaded Naples, having arranged a secret treaty with Ferdinand II of Aragon to divide the kingdom. Conquering the Duchy of Milan in 1500, his army moved on to Naples where he was proclaimed king in 1501. His control of Naples did not last long, as Clara Erskine Clement describes:

Such an alliance as that of Ferdinand and Louis XII. of Spain and France could scarcely endure for long, or be advantageous to either country during its existence. After a series of misunderstandings and quarrels, actual hostilities began in 1502; and, the French army being defeated in four battles in eighteen months, the kingdom of Naples became an absolute possession of Spain. › Continue reading…


The Kingdom of Naples, Part 14: Frederick (1496-1501)

Castello_Aragonese_IschiaIschia (Source: Wikimedia / Creative Commons)

Clara Erskine Clement, in her 1894 book Naples, the City of Parthenope and its Environs, describes the reign and sad end of Frederick, sometimes called Frederick IV or Frederick II, who would be the last independent king of Naples for many centuries: › Continue reading…


The Kingdom of Naples, Part 13: Ferdinand II (1495-1496)

Ferdinand IIFerdinand II of Naples when he was Duke of Calabria
(Source: Wikimedia / Creative Commons)

King Alfonso II of Naples had fled his kingdom in the face of the French invasion. His son, Ferdinand II, would regain the kingdom, but died soon after. As described by Clara Erskine Clement:

Ferdinand II. returned to Naples, and with the aid of the great Spanish captain, Gonsalvo da Cordova, had regained nearly all that his father had lost, when, in October, 1496, he was borne from Somma to Castel Capuano, sick unto death. In the “Cronaca di Notar Giacomo,” this account is given:

“On the following Thursday, the Most Reverend Lord Archbishop, Alexander Carafa, led two solemn processions, one of which went towards the Nunziata, bearing the head and blood of the glorious martyr St. Januarius, followed by a numberless troop of women with burning wax torches. As the procession reached the castle, the queen mother appeared under the portal and threw herself on the ground, upon which the Archbishop uttered three prayers: the first to the Madonna, the second for the sick King, and the third to St. Januarius. Then they all exclaimed ‘Misericordia’ so loudly and tumultuously that the Archbishop could hardly finish the prayer amid the lamentations of the people. On the following Friday, at the seventh hour, another procession was about to march to Santa Maria la Nuova: then came the intelligence that God had taken the Lord King to himself. Cujus anima requiescat in pace.” › Continue reading…


The Kingdom of Naples, Part 12: Alfonso II (1494-1495)

Alfonso IIAlfonso, Duke of Calabria, later Alfonso II, King of Naples
(Source Wikimedia / Creative Commons)

When Ferdinand I, King of Naples, died, the French King, Charles VIII, was preparing to invade. As Clara Erskine Clement describes the ensuing conflict:

Had Ferdinand lived, he would have avoided war with France, if possible; but Alfonso [II], who was as much hated as his father had been, was of a proud and determined character, and prepared to defend himself against his enemy. He made an alliance with Pope Alexander, and together they proposed friendship to the Sultan Bajazet, and advised him to attack the French, warning him of the plan that Charles VIII. had made against Constantinople. The Sultan considered the threatened danger as too distant to demand immediate attention, and declined the alliance with the Holy Father and the King of Naples. › Continue reading…


The Kingdom of Naples, Part 11: Ferdinand I (1458-1494)

Ferrante_I_of_NaplesFerrante/Ferdinand I of Naples, Source: Wikimedia

Alfonso V of Aragon and I of Sicily and Naples left Aragon and Sicily to his legitimate heir, John, and Naples to his illegitimate son, Ferdinand (also written as Ferrante). Clara Erskine Clement describes the place where Ferdinand was declared Alfonso’s heir in Naples: › Continue reading…


The Kingdom of Naples, Part 10: Alfonso I (1442-1458)

Medalla_de_Alfonso_V_de_AragónSilver medal of Alfonso V (1449) by Pisanello. Source: Luis García / Wikimedia / Creative Commons

As described in my previous post, King Alfonso V of Aragon eventually defeated King René of Naples in 1442. He then ruled until his death in 1458 as Alfonso I of Naples. He was also Alfonso I of Sicily, meaning that he ruled over both parts of the former Norman kingdom of Sicily. At his death, he was succeeded in Aragon and Sicily by his son John II and in Naples by his illegitimate son Ferdinand. He thus began the Aragonese dynasty of Naples. › Continue reading…


The Kingdom of Naples, Part 9: René (1435-1442)

René_d'AnjouKing René and his army from the Vigiles de roi Charles VII, 1484
(Source: Wikimedia)

Joanna[II]’s death [in 1435] was the signal for wars and contentions for the throne of Naples between the French and Aragonese claimants, in which a large part of Europe was involved, which continued seventy years and ended in its becoming a Spanish possession.

After the death of Louis III, titular King of Naples, who was the chosen heir of Queen Joanna II, she left her kingdom to Louis’ brother, René of Anjou. René was the son of King Louis II of Naples, who had opposed King Ladislaus of Naples, and grandson of Louis I of Naples, who had been the husband of Joanna I. The quotation above is by Clara Erskine Clement from her book Naples, the City of Parthenope and its Environs (1894). She goes on to describe the events that followed Queen Joanna’s death: › Continue reading…

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