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Henry IV (French: Henri IV, read as Henri-Quatre [ɑ̃ʁi katʁ]; 13 December 1553 – 14 May 1610), also known by the epithet "Good King Henry", was King of Navarre
King of Navarre
(as Henry III) from 1572 to 1610 and King of France
King of France
from 1589 to 1610. He was the first monarch of France from the House of Bourbon, another branch of the Capetian dynasty (through Louis IX, as the previous House of Valois
House of Valois
had been through Philip II). He was assassinated in 1610 by François Ravaillac, a fanatical Catholic, and was succeeded by his son Louis XIII.[1] Baptised as a Catholic
but raised in the Protestant faith by his mother Jeanne d'Albret, Queen of Navarre, Henry inherited the throne of Navarre in 1572 on the death of his mother. As a Huguenot, Henry was involved in the French Wars of Religion, barely escaping assassination in the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre. He later led Protestant forces against the royal army. As Head of the House of Bourbon, Henry was a direct male-line descendant of Louis IX
Louis IX
of France, and "first prince of the blood". Upon the death of his brother-in-law and distant cousin Henry III of France
in 1589, Henry was called to the French succession by the Salic law. He initially kept the Protestant faith (the only French king to do so) and had to fight against the Catholic
League, which denied that he could wear France's crown as a Protestant. To obtain mastery over his kingdom, after four years of stalemate, he found it prudent to abjure the Calvinist
faith. As a pragmatic politician (in the parlance of the time, a politique), he displayed an unusual religious tolerance for the era. Notably, he promulgated the Edict of Nantes
Edict of Nantes
(1598), which guaranteed religious liberties to Protestants, thereby effectively ending the Wars of Religion. Considered a usurper by some Catholics and a traitor by some Protestants, Henry became target of at least 12 assassination attempts.[2] An unpopular king immediately after his accession, Henry gained more status after his death.[3] He was admired for his repeated victories over his enemies and his conversion to Catholicism. The "Good King Henry" (le bon roi Henri) was remembered for his geniality and his great concern about the welfare of his subjects. He was celebrated in the popular song "Vive le roi Henri" and in Voltaire's Henriade.


1 Early life

1.1 Childhood and adolescence 1.2 First marriage and Saint Bartholomew's Day Massacre 1.3 Wars of Religion 1.4 " Paris
is well worth a Mass" 1.5 Second marriage

2 Achievements of his reign 3 International relations under Henry IV

3.1 Spain and Italy 3.2 Germany 3.3 Ottoman Empire 3.4 East Asia

4 Character

4.1 Nicknames

5 Assassination 6 Legacy 7 Genealogy

7.1 Ancestors 7.2 Patrilineal descent

8 Religion 9 Marriages and legitimate children 10 Armorial 11 Notes 12 References 13 Further reading 14 External links

Early life[edit] Childhood and adolescence[edit]

Henry III of France
Henry III of France
on his deathbed designating Henry IV of Navarre as his successor (1589)

Henry was born in Pau, the capital of the joint Kingdom of Navarre with the sovereign principality of Béarn.[4] His parents were Queen Joan III of Navarre (Jeanne d'Albret) and her consort, Antoine de Bourbon, Duke of Vendôme, King of Navarre.[5] Although baptised as a Roman Catholic, Henry was raised as a Protestant by his mother,[6] who had declared Calvinism the religion of Navarre. As a teenager, Henry joined the Huguenot
forces in the French Wars of Religion. On 9 June 1572, upon his mother's death, the 19-year-old became King of Navarre.[7] First marriage and Saint Bartholomew's Day Massacre[edit] At Queen Joan's death, it was arranged for Henry to marry Margaret of Valois, daughter of Henry II and Catherine de' Medici. The wedding took place in Paris
on 18 August 1572[8] on the parvis of Notre Dame Cathedral. On 24 August, the Saint Bartholomew's Day Massacre
Saint Bartholomew's Day Massacre
began in Paris. Several thousand Protestants who had come to Paris
for Henry's wedding were killed, as well as thousands more throughout the country in the days that followed. Henry narrowly escaped death thanks to the help of his wife and his promise to convert to Catholicism. He was forced to live at the court of France, but he escaped in early 1576. On 5 February of that year, he formally abjured Catholicism at Tours
and rejoined the Protestant forces in the military conflict.[7] He named his 16-year-old sister, Catherine de Bourbon, regent of Béarn. Catherine held the regency for nearly thirty years. Wars of Religion[edit]

Henry at the Battle of Arques

Henry IV at the Battle of Ivry, by Peter Paul Rubens

Henry IV, as Hercules
vanquishing the Lernaean Hydra
Lernaean Hydra
(i.e. the Catholic
League), by Toussaint Dubreuil, circa 1600

Henry became heir presumptive to the French throne in 1584 upon the death of Francis, Duke of Anjou, brother and heir to the Catholic Henry III, who had succeeded Charles IX in 1574. Because Henry of Navarre was the next senior agnatic descendant of King Louis IX, King Henry III had no choice but to recognise him as the legitimate successor.[9] Salic law
Salic law
barred the king's sisters and all others who could claim descent through only the female line from inheriting. Since Henry of Navarre was a Huguenot, the issue was not considered settled in many quarters of the country, and France
was plunged into a phase of the Wars of Religion known as the War of the Three Henries. Henry III and Henry of Navarre were two of these Henries. The third was Henry I, Duke of Guise, who pushed for complete suppression of the Huguenots
and had much support among Catholic
loyalists. Political disagreements among the parties set off a series of campaigns and counter-campaigns that culminated in the Battle of Coutras.[10] In December 1588, Henry III had Henry I of Guise murdered,[11] along with his brother, Louis Cardinal de Guise.[12] Henry III thought that the removal of Guise would finally restore his authority. Instead, however, the populace were horrified and rose against him. In several cities, the title of the king was no longer recognized. His power was limited to Blois, Tours, and the surrounding districts. In the general chaos, the king relied on King Henry of Navarre and his Huguenots. The two kings were united by a common interest—to win France
from the Catholic
League. Henry III acknowledged the King of Navarre
King of Navarre
as a true subject and Frenchman, not a fanatic Huguenot
aiming for the destruction of Catholics. Catholic
royalist nobles also rallied to the king's standard. With this combined force, the two kings marched to Paris. The morale of the city was low, and even the Spanish ambassador believed the city could not hold out longer than a fortnight. But Henry III was assassinated shortly thereafter (2 August 1589) by a fanatical monk.[13] When Henry III died, Henry of Navarre nominally became king of France. The Catholic
League, however, strengthened by support from outside the country—especially from Spain—was strong enough to prevent a universal recognition of his new title. Most of the Catholic
nobles who had joined Henry III for the siege of Paris
also refused to recognize the claim of Henry of Navarre, and abandoned him. He set about winning his kingdom by military conquest, aided by English money and German troops. Henry's Catholic
uncle Charles, Cardinal de Bourbon, was proclaimed king by the League, but the Cardinal was Henry's prisoner at the time.[14] Henry was victorious at the Battle of Arques and the Battle of Ivry, but failed to take Paris
after besieging it in 1590.[15] When Cardinal de Bourbon died in 1590, the League could not agree on a new candidate. While some supported various Guise candidates, the strongest candidate was probably the Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia of Spain, the daughter of Philip II of Spain, whose mother Elisabeth had been the eldest daughter of Henry II of France.[16] In the religious fervor of the time, the Infanta was recognized to be a suitable candidate, provided that she marry a suitable husband. The French overwhelmingly rejected Philip's first choice, Archduke
Ernest of Austria, the Emperor's brother, also a member of the House of Habsburg. In case of such opposition, Philip indicated that princes of the House of Lorraine would be acceptable to him: the Duke of Guise; a son of the Duke of Lorraine; and the son of the Duke of Mayenne. The Spanish ambassadors selected the Duke of Guise, to the joy of the League. But at that moment of seeming victory, the envy of the Duke of Mayenne was aroused, and he blocked the proposed election of a king.

with portrait of King Henri IV, made in Nuremberg
(Germany) by Hans Laufer

The Parlement
of Paris
also upheld the Salic law. They argued that if the French accepted natural hereditary succession, as proposed by the Spaniards, and accepted a woman as their queen, then the ancient claims of the English kings would be confirmed, and the monarchy of centuries past would be nothing but an illegality.[17] The Parlement admonished Mayenne, as Lieutenant-General, that the Kings of France had resisted the interference of the Pope in political matters, and that he should not raise a foreign prince or princess to the throne of France
under the pretext of religion. Mayenne was angered that he had not been consulted prior, but yielded, since their aim was not contrary to his present views. Despite these setbacks for the League, Henry remained unable to take control of Paris. " Paris
is well worth a Mass"[edit]

Entrance of Henry IV in Paris, 22 March 1594, with 1,500 cuirassiers

On 25 July 1593, with the encouragement of his great love, Gabrielle d'Estrées, Henry permanently renounced Protestantism
and converted to Roman Catholicism—in order to obtain the French crown, thereby earning the resentment of the Huguenots
and his former ally Queen Elizabeth I of England. He was said to have declared that Paris
vaut bien une messe (" Paris
is well worth a mass"),[18][19][20] although there is some doubt whether he said this, or whether the statement was attributed to him by his contemporaries.[21][22] His acceptance of Roman Catholicism secured the allegiance of the vast majority of his subjects. Since Reims, the traditional location for the coronation of French kings, was still occupied by the Catholic
League, Henry was crowned King of France
King of France
at the Cathedral of Chartres
Cathedral of Chartres
on 27 February 1594.[23] He did not forget his former Calvinist
coreligionists, however and was known for his religious tolerance. In 1598 he issued the Edict of Nantes, which granted circumscribed toleration to the Huguenots.[24] Second marriage[edit]

Henry IV and Marie de Médicis

Henry's first marriage was not a happy one, and the couple remained childless. Henry and Margaret separated even before Henry acceded to the throne in August 1589. Margaret lived for many years in the Château d'Usson
Château d'Usson
in the Auvergne. After Henry became king of France, it was of the utmost importance that he provide an heir to the crown to avoid the problem of a disputed succession. Henry favoured the idea of obtaining an annulment of his marriage to Margaret and taking his mistress Gabrielle d'Estrées
Gabrielle d'Estrées
as his bride; after all, she had already borne him three children. Henry's councillors strongly opposed this idea, but the matter was resolved unexpectedly by Gabrielle's sudden death in the early hours of 10 April 1599, after she had given birth to a premature and stillborn son. His marriage to Margaret was annulled in 1599, and Henry married Marie de' Medici
Marie de' Medici
in 1600. For the royal entry of Marie into Avignon
on 19 November 1600, the citizens bestowed on Henry the title of the Hercule Gaulois ("Gallic Hercules"), justifying the extravagant flattery with a genealogy that traced the origin of the House of Navarre to a nephew of Hercules' son Hispalus.[25] Achievements of his reign[edit]

Henri IV on Horseback Trampling his Enemy. Bronze, circa 1615-1620 AD. From France, probably Paris. Victoria and Albert Museum, London

During his reign, Henry IV worked through his faithful right-hand man, the minister Maximilien de Béthune, Duke of Sully, to regularise state finance, promote agriculture, drain swamps, undertake public works, and encourage education. He established the Collège Royal Henri-le-Grand in La Flèche
La Flèche
(today the Prytanée Militaire de la Flèche). He and Sully protected forests from further devastation, built a system of tree-lined highways, and constructed bridges and canals. He had a 1200-metre canal built in the park at the Château Fontainebleau (which may be fished today) and ordered the planting of pines, elms, and fruit trees. He used one construction project to attract attention to his power. When building the Pont-Neuf, a bridge in Paris, he placed a statue of himself in the middle.[26]

Itinerary of François Pyrard de Laval, (1601–1611)

The King restored Paris
as a great city, with the Pont Neuf, which still stands today, constructed over the river Seine
to connect the Right and Left Banks of the city. Henry IV also had the Place Royale built (since 1800 known as Place des Vosges), and added the Grande Galerie to the Louvre Palace. More than 400 metres long and thirty-five metres wide, this huge addition was built along the bank of the Seine
River. At the time it was the longest edifice of its kind in the world. King Henry IV, a promoter of the arts by all classes of people, invited hundreds of artists and craftsmen to live and work on the building's lower floors. This tradition continued for another two hundred years, until Emperor Napoleon I
Napoleon I
banned it. The art and architecture of his reign have become known as the "Henry IV style" since that time. King Henry's vision extended beyond France, and he financed several expeditions of Pierre Dugua, Sieur de Monts and Samuel de Champlain
Samuel de Champlain
to North America. France
lay claim to New France
(now Canada).[27] International relations under Henry IV[edit]

Engraving of Henry IV

Coin of Henry IV, demi écu, Saint Lô (1589)

During the reign of Henry IV, rivalry continued among France, the Habsburg
rulers of Spain, and the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
for the mastery of Western Europe. The conflict was not resolved until after the Thirty Years' War. Spain and Italy[edit] During Henry's struggle for the crown, Spain had been the principal backer of the Catholic
League, and it tried to thwart Henry. Under the Duke of Parma, an army from the Spanish Netherlands
Spanish Netherlands
intervened in 1590 against Henry and foiled his siege of Paris. Another Spanish army helped the nobles opposing Henry to win the Battle of Craon
Battle of Craon
against his troops in 1592. After Henry's coronation, the war continued as an official tug-of-war between the French and Spanish states, but after victory at the Siege of Amiens in September 1597 the Peace of Vervins was signed in 1598. This enabled him to turn his attention to Savoy, with which he also had been fighting. Their conflicts were settled in the Treaty of Lyon of 1601, which mandated territorial exchanges between France
and the Duchy of Savoy. Germany[edit] In 1609 Henry's intervention helped to settle the War of the Jülich succession through diplomatic means. It was widely believed that in 1610 Henry was preparing to go to war against the Holy Roman Empire. The preparations were terminated by his assassination, however, and the subsequent rapprochement with Spain under the regency of Marie de' Medici. Ottoman Empire[edit]

Bilingual Franco-Turkish translation of the 1604 Franco-Ottoman Capitulations between Sultan Ahmed I
Sultan Ahmed I
and Henry IV of France, published by François Savary de Brèves
François Savary de Brèves

Even before Henry's accession to the French throne, the French Huguenots
were in contact with Aragonese Moriscos
in plans against the Habsburg
government of Spain in the 1570s.[29] Around 1575, plans were made for a combined attack of Aragonese Moriscos
and Huguenots
from Béarn
under Henry against Spanish Aragon, in agreement with the king of Algiers
and the Ottoman Empire, but this project floundered with the arrival of John of Austria
John of Austria
in Aragon
and the disarmament of the Moriscos.[30][31] In 1576, a three-pronged fleet from Constantinople was planned to disembark between Murcia
and Valencia
while the French Huguenots
would invade from the north and the Moriscos
accomplish their uprising, but the Ottoman fleet failed to arrive.[30] After his crowning, Henry continued the policy of a Franco-Ottoman alliance
Franco-Ottoman alliance
and received an embassy from Sultan Mehmed III
Mehmed III
in 1601.[32][33] In 1604, a "Peace Treaty and Capitulation" was signed between Henry IV and the Ottoman Sultan Ahmet I. It granted numerous advantages to France
in the Ottoman Empire.[33] In 1606–07, Henry IV sent Arnoult de Lisle
Arnoult de Lisle
as Ambassador to Morocco to obtain the observance of past friendship treaties. An embassy was sent to Tunisia
in 1608 led by François Savary de Brèves.[34] East Asia[edit] Further information: France-Asia relations During the reign of Henry IV, various enterprises were set up to develop trade with faraway lands. In December 1600, a company was formed through the association of Saint-Malo, Laval, and Vitré to trade with the Moluccas and Japan.[35] Two ships, the Croissant and the Corbin, were sent around the Cape of Good Hope
Cape of Good Hope
in May 1601. One was wrecked in the Maldives, leading to the adventure of François Pyrard de Laval, who managed to return to France
in 1611.[35][36] The second ship, carrying François Martin de Vitré, reached Ceylon
and traded with Aceh in Sumatra, but was captured by the Dutch on the return leg at Cape Finisterre.[35][36] François Martin de Vitré was the first Frenchman to write an account of travels to the Far East in 1604, at the request of Henry IV, and from that time numerous accounts on Asia would be published.[37] From 1604 to 1609, following the return of François Martin de Vitré, Henry developed a strong enthusiasm for travel to Asia and attempted to set up a French East India Company
French East India Company
on the model of England and the Netherlands.[36][37][38] On 1 June 1604, he issued letters patent to Dieppe merchants to form the Dieppe Company, giving them exclusive rights to Asian trade for 15 years. No ships were sent, however, until 1616.[35] In 1609, another adventurer, Pierre-Olivier Malherbe, returned from a circumnavigation of the globe and informed Henry of his adventures.[37] He had visited China and India, and had an encounter with Akbar.[37] Character[edit]

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Henry IV, Versailles Museum

Henry IV proved to be a man of vision and courage.[citation needed] Instead of waging costly wars to suppress opposing nobles, Henry simply paid them off. As king, he adopted policies and undertook projects to improve the lives of all subjects, which made him one of the country's most popular rulers ever. Henry is said to have originated the oft-repeated phrase, "a chicken in every pot". The context for that phrase:

Si Dieu me prête vie, je ferai qu'il n'y aura point de laboureur en mon royaume qui n'ait les moyens d'avoir le dimanche une poule dans son pot! (If God keeps me, I will make sure that no peasant in my realm will lack the means to have a chicken in the pot on Sunday!)

This statement epitomises the peace and relative prosperity which Henry brought to France
after decades of religious war, and demonstrates how well he understood the plight of the French worker and peasant farmer. This real concern for the living conditions of the "lowly" population—who in the final analysis provided the economic basis for the power of the king and the great nobles—was perhaps without parallel among the kings of France. Following his death Henry would be remembered fondly by most of the population. Henry's forthright manner, physical courage, and military successes also contrasted dramatically with the sickly, effete languor of the last Valois kings, as evinced by his blunt assertion that he ruled with "weapon in hand and arse in the saddle" (on a le bras armé et le cul sur la selle). He was also a great philanderer, fathering many children by a number of mistresses. Nicknames[edit] Henry was nicknamed "the Great" (Henri le Grand), and in France
is also called le bon roi Henri ("the good king Henry") or le vert galant ("The Green Gallant", for his numerous mistresses).[39] In English he is most often referred to as Henry of Navarre. Assassination[edit] Henry was the subject of attempts on his life by Pierre Barrière in August 1593[40] and Jean Châtel in December 1594.[41] In the third assassination attempt, King Henry IV was killed in Paris on 14 May 1610 by a Catholic
fanatic, François Ravaillac, who stabbed him in the Rue de la Ferronnerie. Henry's coach was stopped by traffic congestion related to the Queen's coronation ceremony, as depicted in the engraving by Gaspar Bouttats.[42][43] Hercule de Rohan, duc de Montbazon, was with him when he was killed; Montbazon was wounded, but survived. Henry was buried at the Saint Denis Basilica. His widow, Marie de' Medici, served as regent for their nine-year-old son, Louis XIII, until 1617.[44]

Assassination of Henry IV, engraving by Gaspar Bouttats

His assassin, François Ravaillac, brandishing his dagger

Lying in state at the Louvre, engraving after François Quesnel

Alleged skull of Henry IV in 1933; his tomb was ransacked during the French Revolution


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Henri IV, Marie de' Medici
Marie de' Medici
and family

The reign of Henry IV had a lasting impact on the French people
French people
for generations afterward. A statue was erected in his honour at the Pont Neuf in 1614, four years after his death. Although this statue—as well as those of all the other French kings—was torn down during the French Revolution, it was the first to be rebuilt, in 1818, and it stands today on the Pont Neuf. A cult surrounding the personality of Henry IV emerged during the Bourbon Restoration. The restored Bourbons were keen to play down the controversial reigns of Louis XV and Louis XVI and instead emphasised the reign of the benevolent Henry IV. The song Marche Henri IV
Marche Henri IV
("Long Live Henry IV") was popular during the Restoration. In addition, when Princess Caroline of Naples and Sicily (a descendant of his) gave birth to a male heir to the throne of France
seven months after the assassination of her husband Charles Ferdinand, Duke of Berry, by a Republican fanatic, the boy was conspicuously named Henri in reference to his forefather Henry IV. The boy was also baptised in the traditional way of Béarn/Navarre, with a spoon of Jurançon wine
Jurançon wine
and some garlic, imitating the manner in which Henry IV had been baptised in Pau. That custom had been abandoned by later Bourbon kings.

Royal Monogram

Henry IV's popularity continued when the first edition of his biography, Histoire du Roy Henry le Grand, was published in Amsterdam in 1661. It was written by Hardouin de Péréfixe de Beaumont, successively bishop of Rhodez
and archbishop of Paris, primarily for the edification of Louis XIV, grandson of Henry IV. A translation into English was made by James Dauncey for another grandson, King Charles II of England. An English edition was derived from this, which was published at London in 1663. Henry served as the loose inspiration behind Ferdinand, the King of Navarre in William Shakespeare's Love's Labour's Lost.[45] Genealogy[edit] Main article: Henry IV of France's succession Ancestors[edit]

Ancestors of Henry IV of France[46]

16. John VIII, Count of Vendôme

8. Francis, Count of Vendôme

17. Isabelle de Beauvau

4. Charles, Duke of Vendôme

18. Peter II, Count of Saint-Pol

9. Marie of Luxembourg

19. Margaret of Savoy

2. Antoine of Navarre

20. Jean II, Duke of Alençon

10. René, Duke of Alençon

21. Marie of Armagnac

5. Françoise of Alençon

22. Frederick II, Count of Vaudémont

11. Margaret of Lorraine

23. Yolande of Anjou

1. Henry IV of France

24. Alain I, Lord of Albret

12. John III of Navarre

25. Françoise de Châtillon

6. Henry II of Navarre

26. Gaston, Prince of Viana

13. Catherine of Navarre

27. Madeleine of Valois

3. Jeanne III of Navarre

28. John, Count of Angoulême

14. Charles, Count of Angoulême

29. Marguerite de Rohan

7. Marguerite of Angoulême

30. Philip II, Duke of Savoy

15. Louise of Savoy

31. Marguerite of Bourbon

Patrilineal descent[edit]

Patrilineal descent

Henry's patriline was his line of descent in the male line, that is, from father to son only. Patrilineal descent governs membership and succession in many royal and noble houses. Henry was a scion of the House of Bourbon, which was a branch of the Capetian dynasty, which sprang from the Robertians. Henry's patriline ran through the house of Bourbon-Vendôme (Counts and then Dukes of Vendôme), descended from a younger son of the Count of Marche, descended from a younger son of the Duke of Bourbon, whose father was a younger son of Louis IX. Louis was the direct descendant of Hugh Capet, who became King of France
King of France
in 987 and made the crown hereditary. Hugh was the heir of the "Robertian" house, Counts of Worms, descended from Robert of Hesbaye. This line has continued to the present day, more than 1,200 years in all, through kings of France, Navarre, France
again, Spain, Portugal, and the Two Sicilies, dukes of Parma, grand dukes of Luxembourg, princes of Orléans, and emperors of Brazil. It is one of the oldest royal patrilines in Europe.

Robert II of Worms and Rheingau (Robert of Hesbaye), 770–807 Robert III of Worms and Rheingau, 808–834 Robert IV the Strong, 820–866 Robert I of France, 866–923 Hugh the Great, 895–956 Hugh Capet, 941–996 Robert II of France, 972–1031 Henry I of France, 1008–1060 Philip I of France, 1053–1108 Louis VI of France, 1081–1137 Louis VII of France, 1120–1180 Philip II of France, 1165–1223 Louis VIII of France, 1187–1226 Louis IX
Louis IX
of France, 1215–1270 Robert, Count of Clermont, 1256–1317 Louis I, Duke of Bourbon, 1279–1342 James I, Count of La Marche, 1319–1362 John I, Count of La Marche, 1344–1393 Louis, Count of Vendôme, 1376–1446 Jean VIII, Count of Vendôme, 1428–1478 François, Count of Vendôme, 1470–1495 Charles de Bourbon, Duke of Vendôme, 1489–1537 Antoine, King of Navarre, Duke of Vendôme, 1518–1562 Henry IV, King of France
King of France
and Navarre, 1553–1610

Religion[edit] Henry IV was baptized a Roman Catholic
on January 5, 1554. He was raised Reformed
by his mother Jeanne III of Navarre. In 1572, after the massacre of French Calvinists, he was forced by Catherine de' Medici and other powerful Roman Catholic
royalty to convert. In 1576, as he managed to escape from Paris, he abjured Roman Catholicism and returned to Calvinism. In 1593, in order to become King of France rather than by his own beliefs, he converted again to Roman Catholicism. Although a formal Roman Catholic, he valued his Calvinist upbringing and was tolerant toward the Huguenots
until his death in 1610, and issued the Edict of Nantes
Edict of Nantes
which granted many concessions to them. Henry's religious affiliation by date: None (1553; not baptized yet) Roman Catholic
(1554; at baptism)[47] Reformed
(1554-1572; raised Calvinist) Roman Catholic
(1572-1576; forced conversion to Roman Catholicism) Reformed
(1576-1593; returned to Calvinism) Roman Catholic
(1593-1610; converted to Roman Catholicism for coronation) Marriages and legitimate children[edit] Main articles: Descendants of Henry IV of France
Descendants of Henry IV of France
and Henry IV of France's wives and mistresses On 18 August 1572, Henry married his second cousin Margaret of Valois; their childless marriage was annulled in 1599. His subsequent marriage to Marie de' Medici
Marie de' Medici
on 17 December 1600 produced six children:

Name Birth Death Notes

Louis XIII, King of France 27 September 1601 14 May 1643 Married Anne of Austria
Anne of Austria
in 1615

Elisabeth, Queen of Spain 22 November 1602 6 October 1644 Married Philip IV, King of Spain, in 1615

Christine Marie, Duchess of Savoy 10 February 1606 27 December 1663 Married Victor Amadeus I, Duke of Savoy, in 1619

Nicolas Henri, Duke of Orléans 16 April 1607 17 November 1611

Gaston, Duke of Orléans 25 April 1608 2 February 1660 Married (1) Marie de Bourbon, Duchess of Montpensier, in 1626 Married (2) Marguerite of Lorraine
Marguerite of Lorraine
in 1632

Henrietta Maria, Queen of England, Queen of Scots, and Queen of Ireland 25 November 1609 10 September 1669 Married Charles I, King of England, King of Scots and King of Ireland, in 1625

Armorial[edit] The arms of Henry IV changed throughout his lifetime:

From 1562, as Prince of Béarn
and Duke of Vendôme

From 1572, as King of Navarre

From 1589, as King of France
King of France
and Navarre<also used by his successors>

Grand Royal Coat of Arms of Henry and the House of Bourbon
House of Bourbon
as Kings of France
and Navarre (1589-1789)

Brittany portal


^ Baird, Henry M., The Huguenots
and Henry of Navarre, Vol. 2, (Charles Scribner's Sons:New York, 1886), [1] p. 486 ^ Pierre Miquel, Les Guerres de religion, Paris, Club France
Loisirs (1980) ISBN 2-7242-0785-8, p. 399 ^ Le Figaro, "Henri IV, Dès sa mort, il entre dans la légende", 1 August 2009 [2] ^ Urzainqui, T./Esarte, P./Et al., p. 17 ^ de La Croix, René, Duc de Castries, The Lives of the Kings and Queens of France, (Alfred A. Knopf:New York, 1979), p. 175 ^ Henri IV Bourbon, Who's Who in Europe 1450 1750, ed. Henry Kamen, (Routledge, 2002), p. 145 ^ a b Trevor N. Dupuy, Curt Johnson and David L. Bongard, Harper Encyclopedia of Military Biography, (Castle Books, 1995), p. 326 ^ R.J. Knecht, Catherine de' Medici, (Longman, 1999), p. 153 ^ Baird, Henry M., The Huguenots
and Henry of Navarre, Vol. 1, (Charles Scribner's Sons:New York, 1886), p. 269 ^ Baird, Vol 1, p. 431 ^ Baird, Vol 2, [3] p. 96 ^ Baird, Vol 2, [4] p. 103 ^ Baird, Vol. 2, [5] pp. 156–157 ^ Baird, Vol. 2, [6] p. 180 ^ Baird, Vol. 2, [7] p. 181 ^ Holt, Mack P., The French Wars of Religion, 1562–2011, (Cambridge University Press, 1995), p. 148 ^ Ranke, Leopold. Civil Wars and Monarchy in France, p. 467 ^ Alistair Horne, Seven Ages of Paris, Random House (2004) ^ F.P.G. Guizot
(1787–1874) A Popular History of France..., gutenberg.org ^ Janel Mueller & Joshua Scodel, eds, Elizabeth I, University of Chicago Press (2009) ^ G. de Berthier de Savigny in his Histoire de France
(1977 p. 167) claims that the Calvinists in revenge attributed the phrase to him. ^ Paul Desalmand & Yves Stallini, Petit Inventaire des Citations Malmenées (2009)[page needed] ^ Robert J. Knecht, The French Civil Wars, (Pearson Education Limited, 2000), p. 269 ^ de La Croix, pp. 179–180 ^ The official account, Labyrinthe royal... quoted in Jean Seznec, The Survival of the Pagan Gods, (B.F. Sessions, tr., 1995) p. 26 ^ Jones, Colin. The Cambridge Illustrated History of France
(1st ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 160. ISBN 0-521-43294-4.  ^ de La Croix, p. 182 ^ ',The Encyclopaedia of Islam: Fascicules 111–112 : Masrah Mawlid', Clifford Edmund Bosworth, p. 799. Google Books. Retrieved 19 December 2010.  ^ ',Divided by faith', Benjamin J. Kaplan, p. 311. Google Books. Retrieved 19 December 2010.  ^ a b The Moriscos
of Spain: their conversion and expulsion, Henry Charles Lea, p. 281 [8] ^ L. P. Harvey. Muslims in Spain, 1500 to 1614. Google Books. p. 343. Retrieved 19 December 2010.  ^ East encounters West: France
and the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
in the eighteenth century, Fatma Müge Göçek, p. 9 [9] ^ a b Randall Lesaffer, [10] Peace treaties and international law in European history, p. 343 ^ Asma Moalla, [11] "The regency of Tunis and the Ottoman Porte, 1777–1814", p. 59 ^ a b c d Asia in the Making of Europe, Volume III: A Century of Advance. Book
1, Donald F. Lach pp. 93–94 [12] ^ a b c The Cambridge History of the British Empire', p. 61. Google Books. Retrieved 19 December 2010.  ^ a b c d Asia in the Making of Europe. Google Books. p. 393. Retrieved 19 December 2010.  ^ A history of modern India, 1480–1950, Claude Markovits p. 144: The account of the experiences of François Martin de Vitré "incited the king to create a company in the image of that of the United Provinces" ^ l'Académie française: Dictionnaire de la langue française (Institut de France. 6th edition. 1835): 'C'est un vert galant' se dit d'un homme vif, alerte, qui aime beaucoup les femmes et qui s'empresse à leur plaire. É.Littré: Dictionnaire Française (Hachette. 1863): Hommme vif, alerte, vigoreux et particulièrement empressé auprès de femmes. Grand Larousse de la Langue Française (Paris. 1973): Homme entreprenant auprès de femmes. And see Discussion under the heading Vert Galant – A look at the Dictionaries ^ Baird, Vol. 2, [13] p. 367 ^ Baird, Vol. 2, [14] p. 368 ^ Pierre de l'Estoile, Journal du règne de Henri IV. Paris: Gallimard (1960), p. 84 ^ Knecht, Robert J. The Murder of le roi Henri, History Today. May 2010 issue. ^ Moote, A. Lloyd, Louis XIII, the Just, (University of California Press, Ltd., 1989), p. 41 ^ G.R. Hibbard (editor), Love's Labour's Lost
Love's Labour's Lost
(Oxford University Press, 1990), p. 49 ^ Robert Knecht, Renaissance France, genealogies; Baumgartner, genealogicl tables. ^ The History of Henry IV., surnamed the Great, King of France
King of France
and Navarre. Written originally in French ... And made English by J. D. i.e. John Dauncey; p. 15


Kingdom of France
Kingdom of France

Baird, Henry M. (1886). The Huguenots
and Henry of Navarre (2 volumes). New York: Charles Scribner's Sons.  Vol. 2 (copies [15] 1 & [16] 2) at Google Books. Baumgartner, Frederic J. (1995). France
in the Sixteenth Century. London: Macmillan. ISBN 0-333-62088-7.  de La Croix, Rene; de Castries, Duc (1979). The Lives of the Kings & Queens of France. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. ISBN 0-394-50734-7.  Dupuy, Trevor N.; Johnson, Curt & Bongard, David L. (1995). The Harper Encyclopedia of Military Biography. Castle Books. ISBN 0-7858-0437-4.  Holt, Mack P. (2005). The French Wars of Religion, 1562–1629. Cambridge: CambridgeUniversity Press. ISBN 0-521-83872-X.  Knecht, R. J. (1998). Catherine de' Medici. London; New York: Longman. ISBN 0-582-08241-2.  ——— (2002). The French Religious Wars, 1562–1598. Oxford: Osprey. ISBN 1-84176-395-0.  ——— (2001). The Rise and Fall of Renaissance France, 1483–1610. Oxford: Blackwell. ISBN 0-631-22729-6.  Merlin, Paolo (2010). A 400 anni dai Trattati di Bruzolo. Gli equilibri europei prima e dopo i Trattati. Susa: Segusium (association).  Moote, A. Lloyd (1991). Louis XIII, the Just. Berkeley: University of California Press. ISBN 0-520-07546-3.  Urzainqui, Tomas; Esarte, Pello; García Manzanal, Alberto; Sagredo, Iñaki; Sagredo, Iñaki; Sagredo, Iñaki; Del Castillo, Eneko; Monjo, Emilio; Ruiz de Pablos, Francisco; Guerra Viscarret, Pello; Lartiga, Halip; Lavin, Josu; Ercilla, Manuel (2013). La Conquista de Navarra y la Reforma Europea. Pamplona-Iruña: Pamiela. ISBN 978-84-7681-803-9. 

Further reading[edit]


Baumgartner, Frederic J. (1995). France
in the Sixteenth Century. London: Macmillan. ISBN 0-333-62088-7.  Briggs, Robin (1977). Early Modern France, 1560–1715. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-289040-9.  Bryson, David M. (1999). Queen Jeanne and the Promised Land: Dynasty, Homeland, Religion and Violence in Sixteenth-century France. Leiden and Boston MA: Brill Academic. ISBN 90-04-11378-9.  Buisseret, David (1990). Henry IV, King of France. New York: Routledge. ISBN 0-04-445635-2.  Cameron, Keith, ed. (1989). From Valois to Bourbon: Dynasty, State & Society in Early Modern France. Exeter: University of Exeter. ISBN 0-85989-310-3.  Finley-Croswhite, S. Annette (1999). Henry IV and the Towns: The Pursuit of Legitimacy in French Urban Society, 1589–1610. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-62017-1.  Frieda, Leonie (2005). Catherine de Medici. London: Phoenix. ISBN 0-7538-2039-0.  Greengrass, Mark (1984). France
in the Age of Henri IV: The Struggle for Stability. London: Longman. ISBN 0-582-49251-3.  Holt, Mack P. (2005). The French Wars of Religion, 1562–1629. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-83872-X.  Lee, Maurice J. (1970). James I & Henri IV: An Essay in English Foreign Policy, 1603–1610. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. ISBN 0-252-00084-6.  LLoyd, Howell A. (1983). The State, France, and the Sixteenth Century. London: George Allen and Unwin. ISBN 0-04-940066-5.  Lockyer, Roger (1974). Habsburg
and Bourbon Europe, 1470–1720. Harlow, UK: Longman. ISBN 0-582-35029-8.  Love, Ronald S. (2001). Blood and Religion: The Conscience of Henri IV, 1553–1593. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press. ISBN 0-7735-2124-0.  Major, J. Russell (1997). From Renaissance Monarchy to Absolute Monarchy: French Kings, Nobles & Estates. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 0-8018-5631-0.  Mousnier, Roland (1973). The Assassination of Henry IV: The Tyrannicide Problem and the Consolidation of the French Absolute Monarchy in the Early Seventeenth Century. Translated by Joan Spencer. London: Faber & Faber. ISBN 0-684-13357-1.  Pettegree, Andrew (2002). Europe in the Sixteenth Century. Oxford: Blackwell. ISBN 0-631-20704-X.  Pitts, Vincent J. (2009). Henri IV of France: His Reign and Age. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 978-0-8018-9027-7.  Salmon, J. H. M. (1975). Society in Crisis: France
in the Sixteenth Century. London: Ernest Benn. ISBN 0-510-26351-8.  Sutherland, N. M. (1973). The Massacre of St. Bartholomew and the European Conflict, 1559–1572. London: Macmillan. ISBN 0-333-13629-2.  ——— (1980). The Huguenot
Struggle for Recognition. New Haven: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-02328-6.  ——— (1984). Princes, Politics and Religion, 1547–1589. London: Hambledon Press. ISBN 0-907628-44-3.  ——— (2002). Henry IV of France
and the Politics of Religion, 1572–1596. 2 volumes. Bristol: Elm Bank. ISBN 1-84150-846-2.  Wolfe, Michael (1993). The Conversion of Henri IV: Politics, Power, and Religious Belief in Early Modern France. Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press. ISBN 0-674-17031-8


George Chapman
George Chapman
(1559?–1634), The Conspiracy and Tragedy of Charles, Duke of Byron (1608), éd. John Margeson (Manchester: Manchester University press, 1988) Alexandre Dumas, La Reine Margot (Queen Margot) (1845) Heinrich Mann, Die Jugend des Königs Henry Quatre (1935); Die Vollendung des Königs Henry Quatre (1938) (in German) M. de Rozoy, Henri IV, Drame lyrique (1774) (in French)

External links[edit]

Wikiquote has quotations related to: Henry IV of France

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Henry IV of France.

Henri IV – An unfinished reign Official website published by the French Ministry of Culture

Henry III of Navarre & IV of France House of Bourbon Cadet branch of the Capetian dynasty Born: 13 December 1553 Died: 14 May 1610

Regnal titles

Preceded by Jeanne III King of Navarre 9 June 1572 – 14 May 1610 Succeeded by Louis XIII
Louis XIII
and II

Preceded by Henry III King of France 2 August 1589 – 14 May 1610

French nobility

Preceded by Antoine of Navarre Duke of Vendôme and Beaumont Count of Marle, La Fère, and Soissons 17 November 1562 – 2 August 1589 Merged into the crown

Preceded by Jeanne III of Navarre Duke of Albret Count of Foix, Armagnac, Comminges, Bigorre, Limoges, and Périgord Viscount of Béarn Lord of Donezan 9 June 1572 – 2 August 1589

v t e

Heads of state of France

Styled President of the Republic after 1871, except from 1940 to 1944 (Chief of State) and 1944 to 1947 (Chairman of the Provisional Government). Detailed monarch family tree Simplified monarch family tree

Merovingians (486–751)

Clovis I Childebert I Chlothar I Charibert I Guntram Chilperic I Sigebert I Childebert II Chlothar II Dagobert I Sigebert II Clovis II Chlothar III Childeric II Theuderic III Clovis IV Childebert III Dagobert III Chilperic II Chlothar IV Theuderic IV Childeric III

Carolingians, Robertians and Bosonids (751–987)

Pepin the Short Carloman I Charlemagne
(Charles I) Louis I Charles II Louis II Louis III Carloman II Charles the Fat OdoR Charles III Robert IR RudolphB Louis IV Lothair Louis V

House of Capet
House of Capet

Hugh Capet Robert II Henry I Philip I Louis VI Louis VII Philip II Louis VIII Louis IX Philip III Philip IV Louis X John I Philip V Charles IV

House of Valois
House of Valois

Philip VI John II Charles V Charles VI Charles VII Louis XI Charles VIII Louis XII Francis I Henry II Francis II Charles IX Henry III

House of Lancaster
House of Lancaster

Henry VI of England

House of Bourbon
House of Bourbon

Henry IV Louis XIII Louis XIV Louis XV Louis XVI Louis XVII

First Republic (1792–1804)

National Convention Directory Consulate

First Empire (1804–1815)

I Napoleon

Bourbon Restoration
Bourbon Restoration

Louis XVIII Charles X Louis XIX Henry V

July Monarchy
July Monarchy

Louis Philippe I

Second Republic (1848–1852)

Jacques-Charles Dupont de l'Eure Executive Commission Louis-Eugène Cavaignac Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte

Second Empire (1852–1870)


Government of National Defense (1870–1871)

Louis-Jules Trochu

Third Republic (1871–1940)

Adolphe Thiers Patrice de Mac-Mahon Jules Armand Dufaure* Jules Grévy Maurice Rouvier* Sadi Carnot Charles Dupuy* Jean Casimir-Perier Charles Dupuy* Félix Faure Charles Dupuy* Émile Loubet Armand Fallières Raymond Poincaré Paul Deschanel Alexandre Millerand Frédéric François-Marsal* Gaston Doumergue Paul Doumer André Tardieu* Albert Lebrun

Vichy France
Vichy France

Philippe Pétain

Provisional Government (1944–1947)

Charles de Gaulle Félix Gouin Georges Bidault Vincent Auriol Léon Blum

Fourth Republic (1947–1958)

Vincent Auriol René Coty

Fifth Republic (1958–present)

Charles de Gaulle Alain Poher* Georges Pompidou Alain Poher* Valéry Giscard d'Estaing François Mitterrand Jacques Chirac Nicolas Sarkozy François Hollande Emmanuel Macron

Debatable or disputed rulers are in italics. Acting heads of state are denoted by an asterisk*. Millerand held the presidency in an acting capacity before being fully elected.

v t e

Monarchs of Navarre

House of Íñiguez

Íñigo Arista García Íñiguez Fortún Garcés

House of Jiménez

Sancho I Jimeno II Garcés García Sánchez I Sancho II García Sánchez II Sancho III García Sánchez III Sancho IV Sancho VA Peter IA Alfonso IA García Ramírez Sancho VI Sancho VII

House of Champagne

Theobald I Theobald II Henry I Joan I

House of Capet

Philip IF Louis IF John IF Philip IIF Charles IF Joan II

House of Évreux

Philip III Charles II Charles III Blanche I

House of Trastámara

John IIA Charles IV Blanche II Eleanor

House of Foix

Francis Phoebus Catherine

House of Albret

John III Henry II Joan III

House of Bourbon

Antoine Henry IIIF Louis IIF

AAlso King of Aragon. FAlso King of France.

v t e

House of Bourbon

Henry IV of France


Margaret of Valois Marie de' Medici


Louis XIII Elisabeth, Queen of Spain Christine Marie, Duchess of Savoy Nicolas Henri, Duke of Orléans Gaston, Duke of Orléans Henriette Marie, Queen of England, Ireland and Scotland


Henri, Duke of Beaumont (1551–1553) Louis, Count of Marle (1555–1557) Madeleine (1556) Catherine, Duchess of Lorraine

Illegitimate children

César, Duke of Vendôme Catherine Henriette, Duchess of Elbeuf Alexandre, Chevalier de Vendôme Henri, Duke of Verneuil Gabrielle Angelique, Duchess of La Valette and Epernon Antoine, Count of Moret Jeanne Baptiste, Abess of Fontevraud Marie Henriette, Abess of Chelles


Anne Marie Louise, Duchess of Montpensier Marguerite Louise, Grand Duchess of Tuscany Élisabeth Marguerite, Duchess of Alençon and Angoulême Françoise Madeleine, Duchess of Savoy Princess Marie Anne Jean Gaston, Duke of Valois Louis XIV
Louis XIV
of France Philippe, Duke of Orléans

Louis XIII
Louis XIII
of France


Infanta Ana Maria Mauricia of Spain 3


Louis XIV
Louis XIV
of France Philippe, Duke of Orléans


Louis, Dauphin of France Princess Anne Élisabeth Princess Marie Anne Princess Marie Therèse, Madame Royale Philippe Charles, Duke of Anjou Louis François, Duke of Anjou Marie Louise, Queen of Spain Philippe Charles, Duke of Valois Anne Marie, Queen of Sardinia Alexandre Louis, Duke of Valois Philippe Charles, Duke of Orléans Élisabeth Charlotte, Duchess of Lorraine

Great grandchildren

Louis, Duke of Burgundy King Felipe of Spain Charles, Duke of Berry Louis, Duke of Orléans

Louis XIV
Louis XIV
of France


Infanta María Teresa of Spain 3 Françoise d'Aubigné, Marchioness of Maintenon


Louis, Dauphin of France Princess Anne Élisabeth Princess Marie Anne Princess Marie Therèse, Madame Royale Philippe Charles, Duke of Anjou Louis François, Duke of Anjou

Illegitimate children

Marie Anne, Princess of Conti Louis, Count of Vermandois Louis Auguste, Duke of Maine Louis César, Count of Vexin Louise Françoise, Duchess of Bourbon Louise Marie Anne, Mademoiselle de Tours Françoise Marie, Duchess of Orléans Louis Alexandre, Count of Toulouse Louise, Baroness of La Queue


Louis, Duke of Burgundy King Felipe V of Spain p Charles, Duke of Berry Louis Auguste, Prince of Dombes Louis Charles, Count of Eu Louise Françoise, Mademoiselle du Maine Louis Jean Marie, Duke of Penthièvre

Great grandchildren

Louis, Duke of Brittany Louis, Duke of Brittany Louis XV of France Louis I of Spain 1 Felipe of Spain 1 Felipe of Spain 1 Ferdinand VI of Spain 1 Charles III of Spain 1 Francisco of Spain 1 Mariana Víctoria, Queen of Portugal 1 Philip, Duke of Parma 1 Maria Teresa Rafaela, Dauphine of France 1 Luis, Count of Chinchón 1 Maria Antonietta, Queen of Sardinia 1 Charles, Duke of Alençon Marie Louise Élisabeth d'Alençon Louis Alexandre, Prince of Lamballe

Louis XV of France


Maria Carolina Sophia Felicity Leszczyńska


Louise Élisabeth, Duchess of Parma Princess Henriette Princess Louise (1728–1733) Louis, Dauphin of France Philippe, Duke of Anjou Marie Adélaïde, Duchess of Louvois Princess Victoire Sophie, Duchess of Louvois Princess Thérèse Princess Louise (1737–1787)


Princess Marie Therèse, Madame Royale Princess Marie Zéphyrine Louis, Duke of Burgundy Xavier, Duke of Aquitaine Louis XVI of France Louis XVIII of France Charles X of France Clothilde, Queen of Sardinia Princess Élisabeth

Illegitimate children included

Charles de Vintimille Agathe Louise de Saint-Antoine Philippe, Duke of Narbonne-Lara Louis, comte de Narbonne-Lara

Louis XVI of France


Archduchess Maria Antonia of Austria 2


Marie Thérèse, Duchess of Angoulême Louis Joseph, Dauphin of France Louis XVII of France Princess Sophie Hélène

Louis XVII of France


Louis had no children; he died aged 10 in 1795. His uncle, the future Louis XVIII of France, proclaimed himself regent but both titles were disputed.

See Bourbon Restoration.

Louis XVIII of France


Princess Marie Joséphine of Savoy

Charles X of France


Princess Maria Teresa of Savoy


Louis Antoine, Duke of Angoulême Sophie, Mademoiselle Charles Ferdinand, Duke of Berry Marie Thérèse, Mademoiselle d'Angoulême


Princess Louise Élisabeth Prince Louis Louise Marie Thérèse, Duchess of Parma Henri, Count of Chambord

Notes 1 also an Infante
or Infanta of Spain 2 also an Archduchess of Austria 3 both p Philip was the first Bourbon king of Spain, the country's present ruling house.

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WorldCat Identities VIAF: 59094245 LCCN: n50040193 ISNI: 0000 0001 2134 8311 GND: 118548174 SELIBR: 205947 SUDOC: 028600045 BNF: cb120154019 (data) BPN: 35573670 NLA: 35187810 NDL: 00810574