Giovanni was born in Florence on 29 September 1544, the second son of Cosimo I di Medici and his wife, Eleonora of Toledo. Having been made Archbishop of Pisa at a very young age he was made a Cardinal on 31 January 1560 aged 17.
He died of malaria at Livorno on 20 September 1562 in the same attack that carried off his brother, Garzia, and his mother, Eleanor.
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