On This Day

Charles VIII

King of France Charles VIII

Full Name: Charles VIII, the Affable
Profession: King of France

Nationality:
France
French

Why Famous: Charles VIII as son of Louis VI inherited the French crown at the age of 13. His elder sister Anne, together with her husband served as his regent until Charles turned 21 in 1491.

Charles married Anne, Duchess of Brittany in 1491, even though she was already married by proxy to Maximillian I Holy Roman Emperor. Worried at having his rival surround France on more than one side he invaded Brittany before secretly marrying Anne.

In 1494 he started the Italian wars by invading the Kingdom of Naples, which then controlled the Italian peninsula. Charles successfully marched through Italy, taking Naples in 1495. Charles' military gains did not last, Italian states formed a coalition, the League of Venice, managing to win back the territories lost.

Charles died young, at just 27, in an accident after hitting his head and falling into a coma. He was the last of the elder branch of Valois and his cousin Louis VII inherited not only his crown but his wife, marrying Anne to retain control of Brittany.

Born: June 30, 1470
Birthplace: Château d'Amboise, France
Star Sign: Cancer

Died: April 7, 1498 (aged 27)

Married Life

  • 1491-12-06 King Charles VIII of France (21) marries Anna Duchess of Brittany (14) giving France control over Brittany

Historical Events

  • 1483-05-14 Coronation of Charles VIII of France ("Charles the Affable")
  • 1489-07-22 Treaty of Frankfurt signed between Maximilian of Austria and King Charles VIII of France
  • 1492-11-09 Peace of Etaples between Henry VII of England and Charles VIII of France
  • 1493-05-23 King Charles VIII & Maximilian I of Austria sign Peace of Senlis
  • 1494-11-18 French King Charles VIII occupies Florence
  • 1495-01-28 Pope Alexander VI (Roderic Llançol i de Borgia) gives his son Cesare as hostage to Charles VIII of France
  • 1495-02-22 French King Charles VIII enters Naples to claim crown
  • 1495-05-20 French King Charles VIII leaves Naples
  • 1495-07-06 Battle of Fornovo, near Parma: French King Charles VIII beats Holy League

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