John of Valois, the Magnificent, (November 30 1340 ? March 15 1416) was Duke of Berry and Auvergne and Count of Poitiers and Montpensier. He was the third son of King John II of France and Bonne of Luxemburg; his brothers were Charles V, King of France, Louis I of Anjou, King of Naples and Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy. He is mainly remembered today as the most important commissioner of illuminated manuscripts and other works of art commissioned by him, above all the Très Riches
Upon the death of his older brother Charles V in 1382, his son and heir, Charles VI was a minor, so Berry and his brothers, along with the king's maternal uncle the Duke of Bourbon acted as regents. Following the death of Louis ofAnjou in 1384, Berry and his brother Burgundy were the dominant figures in the kingdom. The king ended the regency and took power into his own hands in 1388, giving the governance of the kingdom largely to his father's former ministers, who were political enemies of the king's powerful uncles. Berry and Burgundy bided their time, and were soon able to retake power, in 1392, when the King had his first attack of insanity, an affliction which would remain with him throughout his life. The two royal dukes continued to rule until 1402, when the king, in one of his moments of lucidity, took power from them and gave it to his brother Louis, Duke of Orleans.
Simon of Cramaud, a canonist and prelate, served the Duke in his efforts to find a way to end the Great Western schism that was not unfavorable to French interests.
In his later years, John became more of a consensual figure in France. After the death of Philip the Bold in 1404, he was the last survivor of the sons of King John, and generally tried to play the role of a peacemaker between thefactions of his nephews Orleans and John the Fearless. After the murder of Orleans at the orders of the Duke of Burgundy, Berry generally took the Orleanist or Armagnac side in the civil war that erupted, but was always a moderate figure, attempting to reconcile the two sides and promote internal peace. It was largely due to his urging that Charles VI and his sons were not present at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415. Remem -bering his father's fate as a captive after the Battle of Poitiers 59 years before, Berry feared the fate of France should the king and his heirs be taken captive, and successfully prevented their participation. He died a few months after the battle, which proved as disastrous as he had feared.
Marriage(s) and children
Family and Children John of Berry had the following issue by his first wife, Joanna of Armagnac (1346?1387):
Charles of Berry, Count of Montpensier (1362?1382)
John de Valois, Count of Montpensier, (1363?1402), married Princess Catherine of France, daughter of Charles V, King of France
Louis of Berry (1364?1383)
Bonne of Berry (1365?1435), married Amadeus VII of Savoy and Bernard VII, Count of Armagnac
Marie of Berry, Duchess of Auvergne (1367?1434), married: 1) Louis III of Châtillon, 2) Philip of Artois, Count of Eu; 3) John I, Duke of Bourbon
He married secondly Jeanne d'Auvergne.
John of Berry was also a notable patron who commissioned among other works the most famous Book of Hours, the Très Riches Heures.Like other works produced on the dukes auspices, this model of elegance reflected many of the artistic tendencies of the time in its fusion of Flemish realism, of the refined Parisian style, and of Italian panel-painting techniques." His spending on his art collection severely taxed his estates, and he was deeply in debt when he died in 1416 at Paris.
The web site of the Louvre says of him: By his exacting taste, by his tireless search for artists, from Jacquemart de Hesdin to the Limbourg brothers, Jean de Berry made a decisive contribution to the renewal of art which took place in his time and to a number of religious houses, notably Notre Dame de Paris. He is primarily remembered for the very important illuminated manuscripts commissioned by him.
John of Valois, the Magnificent, (November 30 1340 - March 15 1416) was Duke of Berry and Auvergne and Count of Poitiers and Montpensier. He was the third son of Jean II Valois /King John II of France and Bonne Luxembourg, his brothers were Charles V, King of France, Louis I of Anjou, King of Naples and Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy. He is primarily remembered for the very important illuminated manuscripts commissioned by him.
1. ^ Strayer, J. R. (1982). Dictionary of the middle ages. New York: Scribner.[page needed]
2. ^ The Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol.3, (1911), 809.
3. ^ Medieval France: An Encyclopedia, Ed. William W. Kibler, (Routledge, 1995), 498.
4. ^ Victoria and Albert Museum
5. ^ Strayer, J. R. (1982). Dictionary of the middle ages. New York: Scribner.[page needed]
6. ^ Dossier thématique : La France en 1400 : Jean de Berry at museedulouvre.fr (accessed 20 February 2008)
Stein, Wendy A. "Patronage of Jean de Berry (1340?1416)". In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000?. (May 2009)
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