Monday, October 5, 2015

Biography - Anne of Denmark 1574-1619 - the ups & downs of being married to King James VI & I.

1600 Anne of Denmark 1574-1619 queen of James I of England

Anne of Denmark (1574–1619) was queen consort of Scotland, England, & Ireland as the wife of James VI & I (1566-1625).

1578 Queen Anne's mother Sophie of Mecklenburg-Güstrow (1557-1631) was a German noble and Queen of Denmark and Norway.

The 2nd daughter of alcoholic King Frederick II of Denmark & his wife Sophia of Mecklenburg-Güstrow, a descendant of King Hans of Denmark, Anne married James in 1589 at the age of 14. 

17 May 1590, Anne of Denmark was crowned Queen of Scotland.

Fourteen-year-old Anne was immediately under pressure to provide James & Scotland with an heir, but with no sign of a pregnancy in 1590-93, Presbyterian antagonists felt free to talk of James’s "fondness for male company" & whispered against Anne "for that she proves not with child."

1606 John de Critz the elder (English artist, 1551-52-1642) Portrait of James VI & I 

Anne finally produced an heir, Prince Henry Stuart, in early 1594. The royal couple eventually had 7 children, of whom 3 survived infancy.  Two sons, Henry & Charles (later Charles I), & a daughter, Elizabeth, survived into adult life.

1603 Queen Anne's daughter Princess Royal, daughter of James I & VI. She married Frederick V, Elector Palatine at 16, having many children of which 7 reached adulthood. She was Queen consort of Bohemia only 1 winter. Some called her The Winter Queen.

1605 John de Critz the elder (English artist, 1551-52-1642)  Anne of Denmark 1574-1619 queen of James I of England

A lady at court described Queen Anne, "Her features were not regular but her complexion was extremely fair & she had the finest neck that could be seen, which she took care it should be."

1605 John de Critz the elder (English artist, 1551-52-1642) Anne of Denmark 1574-1619 queen of James VI & I

Fourteen-year-old Anne appears to have cared for James when they 1st married. On 28 July 1589, the English spy Thomas Fowler reported that Anne was "so far in love with the King's Majesty as it were death to her to have it broken off & hath made good proof divers ways of her affection which his Majestie is apt in no way to requite."

Anne was crowned queen in 1590. During the bazaar 7-hour ceremony, her gown was opened by the Countess of Mar for presiding minister Robert Bruce to pour "a bonny quantity of oil" on "parts of her breast and arm," so anointing her as queen. Ministers objected, but James insisted that the rite was from the Old Testament.

1607 Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger (1561-1636) Queen Anne, wife of James I & VI 

Although James had a mistress in 1593-1595, (Anne Murray, later Lady Glamis); in Basilikon Doron, written 1597–1598, James described marriage as "the greatest earthly felicitie or miserie, that can come to a man."  Historians have noted, however, "All his life, except perhaps for 6 short months, King James disliked women, regarding them as inferior beings. All his interest was centered on the attractions of personable young men." The couple gradually came to live apart, though, apparently, some degree of mutual respect & affection survived.

Anne demonstrated an independent streak & was willing to use factional Scottish politics in her conflicts with James over the custody of Prince Henry. Anne would do whatever she had to in order to have a hand in the raising of her children.

1606 Robert Peake the Elder (1551-1619) Queen Anne's daughter Princess Elizabeth (1596–1662), Later Queen of Bohemia 

After 1607, Anne & James lived apart, she in London & he in the countryside at Royston. Anne's chaplain, Godfrey Goodman, summed up the royal relationship: "The King himself was a very chaste man, and there was little in the Queen to make him uxorious; yet they did love as well as man and wife could do, not conversing together."

1612 attr Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger (1561-1636) Anne of Denmark Anne of Denmark 1574-1619 queen of James VI & I 

In England, Anne shifted her energies from factional politics to parenting & to patronage of the arts. She constructed a magnificent court of her own, hosting one of the richest cultural salons in Europe. She was a considerable force as a patron of the arts during the Jacobean age.

1610 Robert Peake the Elder (1551-1619) Queen Anne's daughter Elizabeth (1596–1662) Queen of Bohemia  

After 1612, she suffered sustained bouts of ill health gradually withdrawing from the center of court life. A bitter confrontation between James & Anne occurred in 1613, when Anne shot James's favorite dog dead during a hunting session. After his initial rage, James smoothed things over by giving her a £2,000 diamond in memory of the dog, whose name was Jewel.

1617 Paul van Somer (c 1577-1621) Anne of Denmark 1574-1619 queen of James VI & I 

By late 1617, Anne's bouts of illness had become debilitating. John Chamberlain wrote, "The Queen continues still ill disposed and though she would fain lay all her infirmities upon the gout yet most of her physicians fear a further inconvenience of an ill habit or disposition through her whole body." Though she was reported to have been a Protestant at the time of her death, some believe that evidence suggests that she may have converted to Catholicism at some stage in her life.

1617 Paul van Somer (c 1577-1621) Anne of Denmark 1574-1619 queen of James VI & I. 

At her passing, James honored his late wife with verse:

"So did my Queen from hence her court remove
And left off earth to be enthroned above.
She's changed, not dead, for sure no good prince dies,
But, as the sun, sets, only for to rise."

1606 attr John de Critz the elder (English artist, 1551-52-1642) Portrait of James VI & I 

Biography - Isabella Clara Eugenia of Spain 1566–1633 (and lots more ruffs, of course)

Frans Pourbus the Younger (Flemish Baroque Era painter, 1569-1622) Isabella Clara Eugenia of Spain (1566–1633), Archduchess of Austria

Isabella Clara Eugenia of Spain (1566–1633) was sovereign of the Spanish Netherlands in the Low Countries & the north of modern France, together with her husband Albert, whom she did not marry until the age of 33.

Alonso Sánchez Coello The Infantas Isabel Clara Eugenia and Catalina Micaela

She is often referred to as Clara Isabella Eugenia. By birth, she was an infanta of Spain & Portugal.

Anguissola Sofonisba (Italian painter, 1530s-1625) Infantas Isabella Clara Eugenia and Catalina Micaela

Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia of Spain was born in the city of Segovia in 1566, daughter of Philip II of Spain & his 3rd wife Elisabeth of Valois.

Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) by Alonso Sanchez Coello (Spanish painter, c 1531-1588)

Her father, Philip II, was reportedly overjoyed at her birth & declared himself to be happier on the occasion than he would have been at the birth of a son. Philip already had a male heir, Don Carlos of Spain, the child of his 1st marriage to Infanta Maria of Portugal; however, father & son never developed a close relationship.

1579 Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) by Alonso Sanchez Coello (Spanish painter, c 1531-1588) Detail

Isabella's mother, Elisabeth of Valois, gave birth to Isabella Clara Eugenia on 12 August 1566, & then to Isabella's younger sister Catherine Michelle 10 October 1567.  Isabella did not get to know her mother, Elisabeth, who miscarried a son on 3 October 1568 & died the same day.

after Alonso Sanchez Coello (Spanish painter, c 1531-1588) Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633)

Isabella grew up with her sister Infanta Catherine Michelle of Spain, beloved by her father & her new stepmother Anna of Austria, Philip's 4th wife.

Anguissola Sofonisba (1530s-1625). Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633)

Isabella was also the only person whom Philip permitted to help him with his work, sorting his papers & translating Italian documents into Spanish. Isabella remained extremely close to her father, until his death in 1598.  She served as his primary caretaker during the last 3 years of his life, when he was plagued by gout & frequent illness.

Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) of Spain and Governess of The Low Countries by Marcus Geeraerts the Younger, 1618

Since 1568, at the age of 2, Isabella was promised to marry Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor (1552 – 1612), son of Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor, & Maria of Spain. Isabella, however, had to wait for more than 20 long years; before her eccentric intended Rudolf declared, that he had no intention of marrying anybody.

Alonso Sanchez Coello (Spanish painter, c 1531-1588) Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) Detail 

After her uncle, Henry III of France, was assassinated by the fanatical young monk Jacques Clément in 1589, Isabella's doting father Philip II claimed the French Crown on behalf of Isabella.

Studio of Alonso Sanchez Coello (Spanish painter, c 1531-1588) Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633)

The Parlement de Paris, in power of the Catholic party, gave verdict that Isabella Clara Eugenia is "the legitimate sovereign" of France. However, the Huguenot leader, Henry of Navarre, the rightful King by traditional French inheritance laws, ultimately made good his claim to the throne, converted to Catholicism, & was crowned in 1594. Isabella was no longer the "legitimate sovereign" of France.

Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) by Frans Pourbus II

Angered by this turn of events, her father decided to cede the Spanish Netherlands to her on condition that she marry her cousin, Archduke Albert of Austria. They were to reign over the Netherlands jointly as duke/count & duchess/countess.

Archdukes Albrecht and Isabella of Austria, by Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640)

On 18 April 1599, by now 33 years old, she married Albert, who was also the younger brother of her former fiancé of 20 years, Rudolf II.  Albert was the joint sovereign of the Spanish Netherlands & the former viceroy of Portugal.

15991599 Frans Pourbus the Younger (Flemish Baroque Era painter, 1569-1622) Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633)

Shortly before her father Philip II died in 1598, he renounced his rights to the Netherlands in favor of his daughter Isabella & her fiancé. Isabella bore 3 children, Archdukes Philip (1605) & Albert (1607) & Archduchess Anna Mauritia; however, all 3 of Isabella's children died in infancy.  Beginning in 1601, the couple ruled the Spanish Netherlands together, & after her husband Albert's death, Isabella was appointed Governor of the Netherlands on behalf of the King of Spain.

1599 Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) by Juan Pantoja de la Cruz

The reign of the Archdukes Isabella Clara Eugenia & Albert of Austria was a calming period in the history of the Spanish Netherlands. Political upheavals slowed down & their court became a meeting place for intellectuals, artists, & political envoys.

1599 Sofonisba Anguissola (1530-1625) Infantin Isabella Clara Eugenia, 1599

Isabella & her husband stimulated the growth of the region's artistic movement, which resulted in the creation of the Flemish Baroque period.

1605 Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) Alonso Sanchez Coello (Spanish painter, c 1531-1588)

Their patronage of such artists as Peter Paul Rubens, Pieter Brueghel the Younger, Coebergher, the De Nole family, the Van Veens & many others were the beginning of a Golden Age in the Southern Netherlands.

Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) 1598

Brussels became a vital link in the chain of Habsburg Courts & the diplomatic conduits between Madrid, Vienna, Paris, London, Lisbon, Graz, Innsbruck, Prague & The Hague. 

Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) by the workshop of Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640)

When Albert died in 1621, Isabella joined the Third Order of St Francis & was appointed the Governor of the Netherlands on behalf of the King of Spain.

Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) Princess of Portugal by Flemish school

In September 1609, Rubens was appointed as court painter by Albert VII, Archduke of Austria & Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia of Spain, sovereigns of the Low Countries. He remained close to the Archduchess Isabella until her death in 1633, & was called upon not only as a painter but also as an ambassador.

Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633), 1615

Workshop of Peter Paul Rubens and Jan Brueghel (I). Portrait of Isabella Clara Eugenia, Archduchess of Austria, with the château Mariemont in the background. 1615-1625.

Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633)

Infanta Isabella Clara Eugenia (1566–1633) as a Nun by Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) 1625

Biography - Anna Maria van Schurman (1607-1678) painter, engraver, poet, & scholar

Anna Maria van Schurman, painted by Jan Lievens (1607-1674)

Anna Maria van Schurman (1607 - 1678), was a painter, engraver, poet, & scholar. She was born in Cologne, & she was educated at home with her brothers by her father. Anna Maria & her mother left Germany after the death of her father & moved to Ultrecht in the Netherlands.  As a visual artist, she contributed to drawing & engraving on glass. She "decorated their glasses with flowers & insects drawn with a gossamer touch, often accompanied by epigrams in Latin or Greek capitals." She also painted portraits.

But more importantly, she became the 1st female university student of Europe (Utrecht University, 1636) & the most traditionally learned woman of her time. She attended not only private lectures at the University of Utrecht, but also public disputations and “listening” lectures in the fields of languages and medicine, but especially in theology. She lived most of her life behind the Domcathedral in Utrecht, Holland, where she became reknown for her knowledge of theology, philosophy, medicines & of at least 14 languages (Dutch, German, French, English, Italian, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Aramaic, Arabic, Syriac, Samaritan, Persian & Ethiopic).  

In 1636, she was involved in the founding of the University of Utrecht. However, she was allowed to attend classes, which were all male, only while sheltered from their view by a thick curtain!  The University & its founding is discussed in her Opuscula published in 1648.  Her Opuscula Hebraea Graeca Latina et Gallica, prosaica et metrica was reprinted several times (1650, 1652, 1723, 1749). 

She became one of the leading academics of the 17C, in spite of the fact that she had to sit behind a screen in lectures because of her sex. She formed the hub of a European network of learned women & wrote an important text on how women could be educated. The Opuscula also contains her logical defence of women’s right to study, the Dissertatio de ingenii muliebris ad doctrinam et meliores litteras aptitudine, translated into English as The Learned Maid

She also was a literary artist, wrote poetry in German, Dutch, Latin, Greek, Hebrew & corresponded with many learned men & women of the European Res Publica Litteraria.  Thousands of people visited her, among these Queen Christina from Sweden & Maria de Gonzaga from Poland. 

 Johnson, Cornelius (1593-1661) - 1657 Anna Maria van Schurman

Later in life she left the academy, the church, & city of Utrecht to join the wandering protestant Jean Labadie & his followers. Labidie was a French Reformed Church preacher whose ideas about theology she agreed with. After Labidie's death Schurmann became increasingly important in this group of his followers.  She wrote a humanistic autobiography in Latin, the Eukleria.

Biography - Esther Inglis Kello (1571-1624) embroiderer, calligrapher & miniaturist.

Esther Inglis Kello (Embroiderer, calligrapher, & miniaturist, 1571-1624) 1595, Scottish National Portrait Gallery. In this portrait, painted at about the time of her marriage, Esther holds one of her books.  She wears a necklace composed of several strands of tiny beads & on her left hand she has 3 rings. One has an amber-colored stone in a conventional quatrefoil bezel. On her little finger is a plain double hoop & her thumb has another double hoop. This might have been her wedding ring, which some ladies of the period wore on the thumb.

Esther Inglis Kello (1571-1624) became an embroiderer, calligrapher & miniaturist. She made exquisite illuminated manuscripts of religious verses for numerous aristocrats & monarchs.

She was born in France, probably at Dieppe.  Her father, Nicholas Langlois, & her mother, Marie Prisott decided to leave France for England about the time of the St. Bartholomew massacre in 1572.  Her parents with their infant children, fled from France to England & then to Scotland a few years later. They were probably related to the protestant pastor, Jean Langlois, who was martyred at Lyons in 1572.  

Her father Nicholas settled at Edinburgh, where he became master of the French school. On 16 December 1581, Nicholas was granted a pension by James VI for his teaching in Edinburgh. The royal letter mentioned his work forming his pupil's "hands to a perfect shape of letter." Esther was instructed in the art of calligraphy by her mother, & is said by Thomas Hearne to have become nurse to the young Prince Henry. Her patrons included Queen Elizabeth & her ministers, as well as the royal family of Scotland & David Murray.

When she was in her twenties, Esther married a minister, Bartholomew Kello, who also performed some administrative services for Queen Elizabeth. She married about 1596, Bartholomew Kello of Leith, a minister. John Kello, her father-in-law, & her mother-in-law Margaret were long dead by she the time she was born.  He had been hanged.  She had been murdered.  The minister of Spott, Haddingtonshire, in 1567 was hanged for the murder of his wife, Margaret Thomson, on 4 October 1570. His confession was published by Robert Lekprevik at Edinburgh. Esther moved from Scotland to England, as the minister's son Bartholomew was at the rectory of Willingale Spain, Essex, by December 1607.

Esther often did not assume her husband's last name for the purposes of retaining her artistic identity.  Upon moving to Scotland & becoming an artist, she anglicized her father's French name to Inglis. Though Esther & her husband were constantly plagued by poverty, their marriage seems to have been a productive one. They had 6 children, 4 of whom survived to adulthood.

On the inscription of the self-portrait, she wrote, “De dieu le bien/ de moy le rien” ("From the Lord goodness, from myself nothing"), a belief  that Inglis would repeat in her manuscripts. 

Inglis's talents as both a calligrapher & a miniaturist are evident in over 50 extant manuscripts that she presented to various wealthy patrons, including Queen Elizabeth, King James, Prince Henry, Prince Charles, the earl of Essex, & the Sidney & Herbert families. 

Most of the manuscripts are religious verses or translations; the great achievement of the works is their artistic presentation. The books are miniature in size, often only a few inches wide, with intricate borders of foliage & animals, & they are bound in leather, silk, or velvet. The calligraphy is exquisite, extremely detailed, & often microscopic. Inglis was capable of producing over 40 styles of the various scripts described in 16C handwriting treatises.

All but 3 of her books were signed with her maiden name (meaning 'English') in either its French (Langlois) or Scottish (Inglis) form, although in modern libraries her work is usually cataloged under the name Kello. She was an expert calligrapher, writing a variety of hands with equal skill in miniature form. Sometimes the letters were scarcely a millimetre high. She also decorated her books with paintings & drawings, & she often included self-portraits in them (based on the above portrait.  Inglis dedicated her books & manuscripts to European royalty, including Queen Elizabeth I, as well as to other aristocrats. She would send her work to whomever it was dedicated to, and the recipients would send her a gift of money in return.

In many of the dedications of her manuscripts, Inglis apologizes for her temerity in presenting her work since she is only a woman, yet she also takes evident pride in her labors, finishing off several manuscripts with the motto "Vive la plume." She also includes self-portraits in several of her manuscripts, a sign of ownership of the very works she would then present to potential patrons. In spite of the patronage she received, Esther Inglis was in serious debt, when she died in 1624, at the age of 53.

Esther Kello died on 30 August 1624; her husband survived her, dying on 15 March 1638.  She left 2 daughters, Elizabeth & Mary.  Samuel Kello (died 1680), her only son, was educated at Edinburgh (M.A. 1618). Afterwards he was admitted to Christ Church, Oxford, & became rector of Spexall, Suffolk.

Images of manuscripts from The Folger Library.

David Laing, ‘Notes relating to Mrs Esther (Langlois or) Inglis, the Celebrated Calligraphist, with an Enumeration of Manuscript Volumes Written by her between the years 1586 & 1624’, Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, 6 (1868), 284-309

A.H. Scott-Elliot & Elspeth Yeo, ‘Calligraphic Manuscripts of Esther Inglis (1571-1624): A Catalogue’, Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, 84 (March 1990), 11-86

Frye, Susan. Pens and Needles: Women’s Textualities in Early Modern England. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2010.

Tjan-Bakker, Anneke. “Dame Flora’s Blossoms: Esther Inglis’s flower-illustrated manuscripts.” English Manuscript Studies 1500-1700. Vol. 9 (London: British Library, 2000), 49-72.

Ziegler, Georgianna. “’More than feminine boldness’: the gift books of Esther Inglis.” Women Writing and the Reproduction of Culture in Tudor and Stuart England. Ed. Mary E. Burke, et al. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2000: 19-37.