Biographies & Memoirs

Henri II: His Court and Times

Henri II: His Court and Times

Henri II of France, future father-in-law of Mary Queen of Scots, was a man who was passionately constant in his loves, and equally unbending in his hatreds. His character was skewed by the harsh captivity he and his elder brother, the Dauphin, experienced in Spain as hostages for their father, when the boys were just seven and eight. For nearly four years they were kept from company, from education, even from servants of their own language. By the time they returned home the Dauphin was more Spanish than French, and young Henri was awkward, taciturn and morose.

To give a rounded view of Henri's life, from his unloved youth to the shocking accident that caused his death, the author looks also at the lives of the powerful men and women who influenced him: his libertine and self-centred father François I, his autocratic grandmother Louise of Savoy, his wife Catherine de' Medici, and her hated rival Diane de Poitiers, the Constable Montmorency and growing power of the family de Guise.

Chapter Contents

Chapter I

Chapter II

Chapter III

Chapter IV

Chapter V

Chapter VI

Chapter VII

Chapter VIII

Chapter IX

Chapter X

Chapter XI

Chapter XII

Chapter XIII

Chapter XIV

Chapter XV

Chapter XVI

Chapter XVII

Chapter XVIII

Chapter XIX

Chapter XX

Chapter XXI

Chapter XXII

Chapter XXIII

Chapter XXIV

Chapter XXV

Chapter XXVI

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