Question Time

   Posted by: Dorothea Preis   in News

The following question comes from Pamela J Butler, one of our friends from the American Branch of the Richard III Society.  Did you know the answer?

Name a medieval woman who fits this description:

1. She lived in the late fifteenth century and into the sixteenth century for a few years.
2. She was beautiful and blonde
3. Her father was a powerful ruler, but a bit on the licentious side.
4. Her family used her as a political pawn to further their own ambitions.
5. She died in her late thirties after giving childbirth to a girl.

Yep, you got it!

Lucrezia Borgia.

Loyaulté me lie,
Pamela J. Butler

Any similarities with other persons are completely intentional!  So if you thought the answer was Elizabeth of York, we forgive you.  The similarities with her are interesting, aren’t they?  According to Wikipedia, Lucrezia had ”heavy blonde hair which fell past her knees, a beautiful complexion, hazel eyes which constantly changed colour, a full, high bosom, and a natural grace which made her appear to ‘walk on air’”.  She was born on 18 April 1480 and died on24 June 1519.  The portrait on the right is thought to be the only surviving formal portrait of her.  It was painted  c. 1518 by Dosso Dossi and hangs in the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia.  I was amazed how different the Italian fashion of her time looks to the English one if you think of the portraits of Elizabeth of York or even the later ones of the various wives of Henry VIII.  Lucrezia’s dress reminds me of a Lutheran pastor rather than a medieval lady.

Pamela also remarked that it is interesting that “banner years” keep showing up, like 1492.  Not only did Columbus discover (or rediscover) America, but this was the year Elizabeth Woodville died (actually on today’s date), Borgia was made Pope Alexander VI, the Moors were driven from Spain, and Lorenzo the Magnificent died.

Thank you, Pamela for sharing this with us.  How anyone can think that history is boring, is beyond me.


This entry was posted on Tuesday, June 8th, 2010 at 9:26 and is filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a reply

Name (*)
Mail (will not be published) (*)