Isabella De’ Medici: The Glorious Life and Tragic End of a Renaissance Princess

Written by Caroline P. Murphy
Review by Ann Oughton

Charming, amusing, intelligent and immensely wealthy, the beautiful Isabella de’ Medici strutted her stuff centre stage as an indulged star of the most powerful house of Medici. Her father, Duke Cosimo de’ Medici, allowed her a freedom unknown to any other woman in Renaissance Florence. A born hedonist, Isabella lived for pleasure, holding sway over a court of nobles, musicians and artists. It could not last, for when her father died he was succeeded by Isabella’s brother, Francesco, and her life changed dramatically for the worse.

Caroline Murphy relies on newly discovered documents in Italian archives for this latest history of one of the most powerful families in Renaissance Italy, bringing the true story of Isabella in all its colour and her tragic end to the page.