[MR] Wikipedia: Birth of Mary of Burgundy

Garth Groff and Sally Sanford mallardlodge1000 at gmail.com
Mon Feb 13 03:28:22 PST 2023

Noble Friends,

On this date in 1457 Mary of Burgundy (aka "Mary the Rich") was born at
Coudenberg Castle in Brussels. She was the daughter, and only child of
Charles the Bold, the last Valois Duke of Burgundy, and Isabella of
Bourbon. Charles the Bold was one of the richest men in Europe, and ruled
the French Duchy of Burgundy, other territories within France and the Holy
Roman Empire, as well as most of what are today Belgium, Holland and

After Charles was killed at the Battle of Nancy in early 1477, the
Burgundian empire collapsed. All of the French territories were seized by
the French king Louis XI, as well as some other lands immediately adjacent
to France. Mary was left with most of the Low Countries. To protect what
remained of her inheritance, she married Archduke Maximilian of Austria at
Ghent on 17 August 1477. He was the son of the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick
III, House of Habsburg. Mary and Maximilian continued as co-rulers over
what remained of the Burgundian empire. Max later became Holy Roman Emperor
Maximilian I.

Mary and Maximilian enjoyed a happy marriage, and had two children, Philip
"The Handsome" and Margaret, Duchess of Savoy. Sadly, the marriage was
brief. In 1482 while hawking, Mary's horse stumbled and fell upon her.
Mary's back was broken and she suffered other ultimately fatal internal
injuries, dying on 27 March. She was buried in the Church of Our Lady in

The Burgundian Low Countries passed into full Habsburg control, and
Maximilian was able to check French expansion for a time. The
Low Countries eventually passed to the Spanish Habsburg line. Brutal
Spanish rule and the growth of Protestantism caused a great deal of warfare
and suffering during the 17th century in what would become Belgium and
Holland, but that is beyond our period of interest.

More about Mary of Burgundy is at
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_of_Burgundy .

Yours Aye,

Mungo Napier, Laird of Mallard Lodge  🦆
(and self-confessed Burgundy geek)

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