The Visconti

Putting away my book about Bedlam, I noticed the book above. Aha! Time to get re-acquainted.

The Visconti were a fascinating family for many reasons.

I came across them whilst researching Jehanne d’Arc. Because Charles d’Orleans’ mother was Valentina Visconti – daughter of the Giangaleazzo of the title.

I always place this bunch alongside the Sforza, the Gonzaga, the d’Este.

All these noble Italian families have one thing in common – the supernatural, in one form or another.

A long time ago I posted parts of an amazing article about the Visconti-Sforza tarot.

Well, Valentina is also mixed up in the history of these cards. It’s said that she bought them to France when she married Louis d’Orleans, the King’s brother. BTW – Louis is the one who was murdered on a Paris street and had his left hand chopped off!!!


As for the Gonzaga and (especially) the d’Este….I will return to them another time :o)

Giangaleazzo Visconti (1351–1402) was the first Duke of Milan and ruled the city just before the beginning of the Renaissance. He is well known for his attempt to create a unified northern Italy by conquering the other cities in the valley of the Po. Although this attempt failed, he remains a figure of key importance in the history of late medieval Europe. This volume, which was originally published in 1941, constitutes the first full account of his life. Whilst the process of biography was rendered difficult by a lack of first-hand documentation – the carefully accumulated material in Giangaleazzo’s chanceries was destroyed when the Castello of Milan was razed to the ground – an idea of his character was developed through the use of evidence from other government sources. The end product will be of value to anyone with an interest in Giangaleazzo and medieval European history.

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