Tripti Joshi

Guglielmo Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua

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Reign  1550 - 1587
Name  Guglielmo Duke
Mother  Margaret Palaeologina

Successor  Vincenzo I Gonzaga
Role  Duke of Mantua
Guglielmo Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua
Born  24 April 1538 Mantua (1538-04-24)
Issue  Vincenzo I, Duke of Mantua Margherita Gonzaga Anna Caterina Gonzaga
Father  Federico II Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua
Died  August 14, 1587, Goito, Italy
Spouse  Archduchess Eleanor of Austria (m. 1561)
Children  Vincenzo Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua, Margherita Gonzaga, Duchess of Ferrara
Parents  Federico II Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua, Margaret Paleologa
Grandchildren  Ferdinando Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua
Similar People  Vincenzo Gonzaga - Duke of, Federico II Gonzaga - Duke of, Francesco IV Gonzaga, Eleanor de' Medici, Alfonso II d'Este - Duke of F

Predecessor  Francesco III Gonzaga

Guglielmo Gonzaga (24 April 1538 – 14 August 1587) was Duke of Mantua and Montferrat from 1550 to 1587. He was the second son of Federico II Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua and Margaret Palaeologina of Montferrat. In 1574, Montferrat was elevated to a Duchy and he became its first duke. He was succeeded by his son Vincenzo.


Patron of music

Guglielmo was particularly interested in sacred vocal music, and is known particularly to music historians for his extensive correspondence with the composer Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina. He built a large new church in Mantua, dedicated to Santa Barbara. He engaged in an unprecedented negotiation with the Papacy to create his own rite for Mantua, and devoted considerable resources to developing a musical repertoire for the church, commissioning works by Giaches de Wert and Palestrina. Part of his correspondence with Palestrina discusses the work commissioned in detail, stipulating Guglielmo's requirements, and therefore giving a sense of his musical preferences. Guglielmo's musical tastes were conservative for the day. He enjoyed imitative contrapuntal music but was concerned to maintain clarity of text, thereby showing the influence of Tridentine reforms. Upon his death, his son Vincent invited followers of the more modern trends to his court.

Marriage and children

On 26 April 1561 William married Eleonora of Austria, sixth daughter of Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor and Anna of Bohemia and Hungary. They were parents to three children:

  • Vincenzo I (21 September 1562 – 9 February 1612). Married Eleonora de' Medici (Eleanor's niece).
  • Margherita Gonzaga (27 May 1564 – 6 January 1618). Married Alfonso II d'Este.
  • Anna Caterina Gonzaga (17 January 1566 – 3 August 1621). Married her maternal uncle Ferdinand II, Archduke of Austria.
  • References

    Guglielmo Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua Wikipedia

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