Louis XIII of France

Louis XIII of France

:"For the cognac, see Louis XIII de Rémy Martin."Infobox French Royalty|monarch
name=Louis XIII
title=King of France and Navarre

caption=Louis XIII, by Philippe de Champaigne
reign=14 May 1610 – 14 May 1643
coronation=17 October 1610
predecessor=Henry IV
successor=Louis XIV
spouse=Anne of Austria
issue=Louis XIV
Philip, Duke of Orléans
royal house=House of Bourbon
royal anthem =
father=Henry IV
mother=Marie de' Medici
date of birth=birth date|1601|9|27|df=y
place of birth=Château de Fontainebleau, France
date of death=death date and age|1643|5|14|1601|9|27|df=y
place of death=Paris, France
place of burial=Saint Denis Basilica, France|

Louis XIII (September 27, 1601May 14, 1643) ruled as King of France and Navarre from 1610 to 1643.

Early life

Born at the Château de Fontainebleau, Louis XIII was the eldest child of Henry IV of France (1589–1610) and Marie de' Medici. As the eldest son of the king, he was a Fils de France. His father was the first Bourbon King of France, having succeeded his ninth cousin, Henry III of France (1574–89), in application of Salic law. Louis XIII's paternal grandparents were Antoine de Bourbon, Duke of Vendome and Jeanne d'Albret, Queen of Navarre; his maternal grandparents were Francesco I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany and Johanna, archduchess of Austria, and Eleonora de' Medici, his maternal aunt, was his godmother [cite book |title=Painters and Their Works |url=http://books.google.com/books?id=LoSQhHjfwpoC&printsec=titlepage&dq=#PPP1,M1 |last=James |first=Ralph N. |year=1897 |publisher=University of Michigan |location=Michigan |asin=B000Z6GQ0C |pages=421 ]

Infobox French Monarchical Styles
royal name=King Louis XIII
Par la grâce de Dieu, Roi de France et de Navarre
dipstyle=His Most Christian Majesty
offstyle=Your Most Christian Majesty
altstyle=Monsieur Le Roi

Louis XIII ascended to the throne in 1610, at the age of eight and a half, upon the assassination of his father. His mother acted as Regent until Louis XIII came of age at thirteen, but she clung to power unofficially until he took the reins of government in frustration at the age of fifteen. The assassination of Concino Concini (April 24, 1617), who had greatly influenced Marie's policymaking, and Marie's exile to Blois, removed her from power. Louis then came into his own as ruler of France. He filled his court with loyal friends and sidelined those who remained loyal to his mother. Under Louis XIII's rule, the Bourbon Dynasty sustained itself effectively on the throne that Henry IV had recently secured; but the question of freedom of religion continued to haunt the country.

Cardinal Richelieu played a major role in Louis XIII's administration from 1624, decisively shaping the destiny of France for the next 18 years. As a result of Richelieu's work, Louis XIII became one of the first exemplars of an absolute monarch. Under Louis XIII the Habsburgs were humiliatedFact|date=September 2008Clarifyme|date=September 2008, the French nobility was firmly kept in line behind their King, and the political and military privileges granted to the Huguenots by his father were retracted (while their religious freedoms were maintained). Furthermore, Louis XIII had the port of Le Havre modernized and built a powerful navy. Unfortunately time and circumstances never permitted King and Cardinal to attend to the administrative reforms (particularly of France's tax system) which were urgently needed.

Coin image box 1 double
header = Coin of Louis XIII, struck 1612

caption_left = Obverse: (Latin) "LUVS XIII, R [EX} DE FRAN [CORUM] ET NAVA [RRE] ," or in English, "Louis XIII, King of France and Navarre."
caption_right = Reverse: (Latin) "DOVBLE TOVRNOIS, 1612," or in English, "Double Tournois, 1612."
width = 250
position = left
margin = 0

The King also worked to reverse the trend of promising French artists leaving for Italy to work and study. Louis XIII commissioned the artists Nicolas Poussin and Philippe de Champaigne to decorate the Louvre. In foreign matters, Louis XIII organized the development and administration of New France, expanding the settlement of New France westward along the Saint Lawrence River from Quebec City to Montreal.

Personal relationships

On November 9, 1615, aged only 14, Louis XIII was married to a Habsburg Princess, Anne of Austria (1601–66), daughter of King Philip III of Spain (1578–1621). This marriage followed a tradition of cementing military and political alliances between the Catholic powers of France and Spain with royal marriages. The tradition went back to the marriage of King Philip II of Spain with the French princess, Élisabeth de Valois, the daughter of King Henry II of France, in 1559 as part of the Peace of Cateau-Cambrésis. Their sexual relationship did not begin (other than the consummation of the wedding) until 1619 (when he was 18) [ citation needed ] . The marriage, like many Bourbon-Habsburg relationships, was only briefly happy, and the King's duties often kept them apart. After 23 years of marriage and four miscarriages, Anne finally gave birth to a son in 1638.

There is no evidence whether Louis had mistresses (consequently earning the tile of 'Louis the Chaste'), but persistent rumours insinuated that the King may have been homosexual or at least bisexual. Tallemant des Réaux, in his "Historiettes", gives quite explicit (but inevitably second-hand) descriptions of what happened in the king's bed. ["The King gave his first sign of affection for anybody in the person of his coachman, Saint-Amour. After that he showed feelings for Haran, the keeper of his dogs."] A liaison with an equerry, Francois de Baradas, ended when the latter lost favour fighting a duel after duelling had been forbidden by royal decree. [Louis Cromption, "Homosexuality and Civilization", London, 1991. The grandson of Henry III, Saint-Luc, penned the irreverent rhyme: 'Become a bugger, Baradas / if you are not already one / like Maugiron my grandfather / and La Valette'.]

Though Richelieu was firmly in charge of French policies, the King's favourites left their mark on reign. The first was the Duc de Luynes, 23 years his senior, who was the boy's closest adult friend and adviser at the outset of his reign. The last of the King's favorites (1639–42) was the much younger Marquis de Cinq-Mars, who was executed for conspiring with the Spanish enemy in time of war. The spoiled young aristocrat was beautiful and splendidly dressed, and the gloomy king was captivated and rejuvenated by the dashing youth. Louis' letters to Richelieu are filled with anguished complaints about the distress their lover's quarrels caused him. Tallemant describes how on a royal journey, the king "sent M. le Grand to undress, who returned, adorned like a bride. 'To bed, to bed' he said to him impatiently... and the mignon was not in before the king was already kissing his hands." Cinq Mars, who was himself an ardent womaniser, merely tolerated these passionate attentions. [Louis Cromption, "Homosexuality and Civilization", London, 1991]

After Louis XIII's death in 1643, his wife Anne acted as regent for their four-year-old son, Louis XIV of France (1638–1715).


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boxstyle_4=background-color: #bfc;
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1= 1. Louis XIII of France
2= 2. Henry IV of France
3= 3. Marie de' Medici
4= 4. Antoine of Navarre
5= 5. Jeanne III of Navarre
6= 6. Francesco I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany
7= 7. Johanna of Austria
8= 8. Charles de Bourbon, Duke of Vendôme
9= 9. [http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fran%C3%A7oise_d'Alen%C3%A7on Françoise d'Alençon]
10= 10. Henry II of Navarre
11= 11. Marguerite de Navarre
12= 12. Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany
13= 13. Eleonora di Toledo
14= 14. Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor
15= 15. Anna of Bohemia and Hungary

Marriage and issue

On November 24 1615, Louis XIII married Anne of Austria (September 22 1601January 20 1666). They were childless for almost twenty-three years and had nearly lost hope when the heir to the throne, the future Louis XIV, was born. Many regarded this birth as a divine miracle and, in show of gratitude to God for the long-awaited birth of an heir, his parents named him Louis-"Dieudonné" (“God-given”). As another sign of gratitude, according to several interpretations, seven months before his birth, France was dedicated by his father, Louis XIII, to the Virgin Mary, who, many believed, had interceded for the perceived miracle. [ [http://www.nd-de-graces.com/history/brother_fiacre.htm Our Lady of Graces and the birth of Louis XIV] The website of the [http://www.nd-de-graces.com/accueil.php Sanctuary of Our Lady at Cotignac, Provence] . Retrieved on 2008-01-24] [Henri Bremond. [http://books.google.com/books?id=cWEaAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA381 "La Provence mystique au XVIIe siècle"] . Paris: Plon-Nourrit, 1908. p. 381. "Sans l'assurance d'avoir un fils, Louis XIII n'aurait pas fait le voeu de 1638." Translation: "Without the assurance of having a son, Louis XIII would not have made the vow of 1638."] [cite web|url=http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_761572792/Louis_XIV.html|title=Louis XIV|publisher=MSN Encata|date=2008|accessdate=2008-01-20] However, the text of the dedication does not mention the royal pregnancy and birth as one of its reasons. Also, Louis XIII himself is said to have expressed his skepticism with regards to the miracle after his son's birth. [Claude Dulong. "Anne d’Autriche". Paris: Hachette, 1980. "Irrité de voir tant de courtisans parler de "miracle", Louis XIII aurait répliqué que "ce n'était point là si grand miracle qu'un mari couchât avec sa femme et lui fasse un enfant." Translation: "Irritated to see so many courtiers speak of a “miracle”, Louis XIII is said to have replied: “it was not such a great miracle that a husband slept with his wife and made her a child.”"]

The couple had the following children:

Louis XIII in fiction and film

* Louis XIII, his wife Anne, and Cardinal Richelieu all became central figures in Alexandre Dumas, "père"'s novel, "The Three Musketeers" and subsequent film adaptations. The book depicts Louis as a man willing to have Richelieu as a powerful advisor but aware of his scheming; he is depicted as a bored and sour man, dwarfed by Richelieu's competence and intellect. Films such as George Sidney's or Richard Lester's tend to treat Louis XIII as comical character by depicting him as bumbling and incompetent.
* Louis XIII, his wife Anne, Cardinal Richelieu, Cardinal Mazarin and members of the royal family are mentioned throughout the course of the 1632 Series.
* Louis XIII also appears in novels of Robert Merle's "Fortune de France" series.
* Ken Russell directed the film "The Devils", in which Louis XIII is a significant character, albeit one with no resemblance to the real man. Louis XIII is portrayed as an effeminate homosexual who amuses himself by shooting Protestants dressed up as birds. The film was based on Aldous Huxley's book "The Devils of Loudun".
* Louis XIII also appears in the "Doctor Who" audio drama "The Church and the Crown".


*Moote, A. Lloyd. "Louis XIII, the Just". Berkeley, CA; Los Angeles; London: University of California Press, 1991 (paperback, ISBN 0-520-07546-3).
*Willis, Daniel A. (comp). "The Descendants of Louis XIII". Clearfield, 1999.
*Huxley, Aldous. "The Devils of Loudun". The 1952 book tells the story of the trial of Urbain Grandier, priest of the town who was tortured and burned at the stake in 1634.

ee also

*Absolute monarchy in France
*French monarchs family tree
*Charles II of Guise-Lorraine, Duke of Elbeuf

External links

* [http://napoleonistyka.atspace.com/FRENCH_ARMY.htm The French Army 1600-1900]


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