Copyright Feb 24, 2014 by Dr. Elizabeth Garner and Joe Kiernan
In the previous parts of this series we’ve seen how redhead Jewish DNA flows through almost all of the Royals of Europe and focused on this redheads of Eastern Europe. We will now turn to the Italians.
THE ITALIAN CONNECTION
The major ruling families of Italy during the time that the Dürers were very active in their art were the Medici family out of Florence and the Sforza family out of Milan. We know for a fact that there was extensive artisitic activity happening in Florence under the auspices of the Medicis, probably the richest family in all of Europe, with Michaelangelo having been taken into the home of Cosimo the Elder. Cosimo the Elder sponsored Donatello, Botticelli, Brunelleschi, Marsilio Ficino the mathemetician and also Michelangelo. There was also a major exchange of Ialian artists with the court of the Hungarian King, Matthias Corvinus.
In 1437, Cosimo took over Florence by wit and financial adeptness but most importantly, he brought the Jews back to Florence, who had been kept out of Florence by the Christian moneylenders jealous of competition. This act won the hearts of the Florentines because they could now get loans “like the big shots” allowing the common people to pay off crushing debts, buy homes, expand their businesses. From this point on the Jews’ fate with Florence would be forever linked to that of the de Medici family in Italy. When the Medicis were chased out of town by their enemies, supported by the Vatican, the Jews left with them; when the Medicis took back control of the city, the Jews moved right back to Florence. Jews were sought for private tutoring and intellectuals retreats, causing the Dominicans in Florence ( the Catholic order to which the Pope gave the power of the Inquisition) and in Rome to be scandalized and who then wanted the whole de Medici clan dead.
After Cosimo died, his son Peiro inherited the financial responsibilities and caused disarray. He died after 5 years leaving all on the shoulders of Lorenzo de Medici his oldest son, marrying Clarice Orsini, from an ancient line of roman nobility, raising the social support of the upper class. This marriage allowed the Medici’s to be perceived as a “royal family” of Florence, givng them much more political power.
More political intrigue ensued with the Pope and the DominIcans, and the Medicis lost a very giant monopoly on alum. By 1489 Lorenzo discovered Michaelangelo working for Ghirlandaio and ultimatlely brought him to live in the grand de Medici palace. Thus Michaelangelo was raised with the richest offspring in Europe, taking all his meals with then and studying with the best private tutors of the land.
- CATHERINE DE MEDICI
Almost all of the Medicis were redheads.
Sforza was a ruling family of based in Milan. They acquired the dukedom and Duchy of Milan from the previously ruling Visconti family in the mid-15th century. The Medicis had engineered the destruction of the Viscontis with their replacement by the Sforzas. They lost it to the Spanish Hapsburgs about a century later.
Rising from rural nobility, the Sforzas became condotierri and used this military position to become rulers in Milan. The family governed by force, ruse, and power politics, similar to the Medici in Florence. Under their rule the city-state flourished and expanded.
Giacomo or Jacopo Attendolo (1369–1424), called Sforza (from sforzare, to exert or force), founded the dynasty. A condottiero from Romagna, he served the Angevin kings of Naples and became the most successful dynast of the condottieri.
His son Francesco I Sforza ruled Milan starting in 1447.
The family also held the seigniory of Pesaro starting from Muzio Attendolo’s second son, Alessandro (1409–1473).
The Sforza held Pesaro until 1519, with the death of Galeazzo.
Muzio’s third son, Bozzio (1411–1476), founded the branch of Santa Fiora in Tuscany, who held the title of count of Cotignola. The Sforza ruled the small territory until 1624. Members of this family also held important ecclesiastical and political position in the Papal States, and moved to Rome in 1674 taking the name Sforza Cesarini.
Muzio’s third son, Bozzio (1411–1476), founded the branch of Santa Fiora in Tuscany, who held the title of count of Cotignola. The Sforza ruled the small until 1624. Members of this family also held important ecclesiastical and political positions in the Papal States, and moved to Rome in 1674 taking the name Sforza Cesarini.
The Sforza would later join with the Borgia family, through the arranged marriage of Lucrezia Borgia to Giovanni (the illegitimate son of Constanza of Pesaro).
Ludivico Sforza (known as Ludovico il Moro, famous for taking Leonardo da Vinci into his service)
was defeated in 1500 by the French army of Louis XII of France in the Italian Wars.
After Imperial German troops drove out the French, Maximilian Sforza,
son of Ludovico, became Duke of Milan (1512-1515) until the French returned under Francis I of France and imprisoned him.
OTHER SFORZA REDHEADS
GianGaleazzo Maria Sforza and his wife Isabella of Aragon
BIANCA MARIA SFORZA, WIFE AND EMPRESS OF HOLY ROMAN EMPEROR MAXIMILIAN
LEONARDO DA VINCI’S REDHEAD SFORZA LUDICICO SFORZA’S MISTRESS CECILIA
Cecilia was born into a large family from Siena. Her father’s name was Fazio. He was not of nobility, but he occupied several posts at the Milanese court, including the position of ambassador to Florence and Lucca. Her mother was Margherita Busti, the daughter of a noted doctor of law.
She was educated alongside her six brothers in Latin and literature. In 1483 at the age of ten, Cecilia was betrothed to Stefano Visconti, but the betrothal was broken off in 1487 for reasons unknown. In May 1489, she left home for the Monastero Nuovo, and it was possibly there where she met Ludovico.
Cecilia spoke Latin fluently and was said to be a gifted musician and singer. She also wrote poetry. In about 1489, she sat for Ludovico’s court artist and engineer, Leonardo da Vinci, who painted her celebrated portrait, which is known as The Lady with an Ermine. Isabella d”Este, an admirer of the work of Leonardo, and soon to be the wife of Ludivico, asked to borrow the portrait, but Cecilia replied it no longer looked like her because she had been so young then and ‘nobody seeing it and me together would suppose it was made for me’. She did not lend the portrait.
Even after Ludovico married Beatrice d” Este, Cecilia continued to keep her apartments in Ludovico’s castle. She had a son, Cesare, on 3 May 1491 by Ludovico.
When Beatrice d’Este found out about their relationship, Ludovico was constrained to ask Cecilia to leave the Porta Giovia castle, the seat of the ducal court. She was first installed in the Verme Palace, and then given the Carmagnola Palace in 1492, when she married Count Ludovico Carminati de’ Brambilla, known as “Il Bergamino”. She bore her husband four children. After the death of both her husband and her son (1514–1515), she retired to San Giovanno of Croce, a castle near Cremona.
Cesare, the son of Cecilia and Ludovico Sforza was made abbot of the Church of San Nazaro Maggiore of Milan in 1498; in 1505, he became canon of Milan. He died in 1512.
Prior to and throughout the duration of his marriage, Ludovico is known to have had other mistresses, although it is thought that he kept only one mistress at a time. Bernardina de Corradis
in 1496. Cecilia Gallerani, believed to be a favourite, gave birth to a son named Cesare
who bore him another illegitimate son, Giovani Paulo,
born in the year of Beatrice’s death. He was a conditerrie. Ludovico also fathered a third illegitimate son, called Sforza, who was born around 1484 and died suddenly in 1487; the boy’s mother is unknown.
So almost all the Sforza were redheads with Jewish redhead genes in their ancestry.
MARY STUART, QUEEN OF SCOTS
So even the French and English had the royal redhead Jewish genes, as did the Duerers, from the royals of the Khazars
We will next go to the court of Matthais Corvinus to learn about the Hungarian Renaissance and then to Spain for some significant new discoveries. Stay tuned!