HOME
        TheInfoList






Charles V[a]
Emperor Charles V seated (Titian).jpg
Portrait by Titian, probably with Lambert Sustris, 1548
Reign28 June 1519 – 3 August 1556 (1519-06-28 – 1556-08-03)
Coronation
PredecessorMaximilian I
SuccessorFerdinand I
King of Spain (Castile and Aragon)
Reign14 March 1516 – 16 January 1556
PredecessorJoanna
SuccessorPhilip II
Co-monarchJoanna (until 1555, de jure)
Archduke of Austria
Reign12 January 1519 – 21 April 1521
PredecessorMaximilian I
SuccessorFerdinand I (in the name of Charles V until 1556)
Lord of the Netherlands
Reign25 September 1506 – 25 October 1555
PredecessorPhilip I of Castile
SuccessorPhilip II of Spain
Born24 February 1500
Prinsenhof of Ghent, Flanders, Burgundian Low Countries
Died21 September 1558 (aged 58)
Monastery of Yuste, Crown of Castile, Spain
Burial22 September 1558
Spouse
(m. 1526; died 1539)
Issue
among others
HouseHabsburg
FatherPhilip I of Castile
MotherJoanna of Castile
SignatureCharles V[a]'s signature

Charles V[b] (24 February 1500 – 21 September 1558) was Holy Roman Emperor and Archduke of Austria from 1519 to 1556, King of Spain (Castile and Aragon) from 1516 to 1556, and Lord of the Netherlands as titular Duke of Burgundy from 1506 to 1555. As head of the rising House of Habsburg during the first half of the 16th century, his dominions in Europe included the Holy Roman Empire, extending from Germany to northern Italy with direct rule over the Austrian hereditary lands and the Burgundian Low Countries, and a unified Spain with its southern Italian kingdoms of Naples, Sicily, and [b] (24 February 1500 – 21 September 1558) was Holy Roman Emperor and Archduke of Austria from 1519 to 1556, King of Spain (Castile and Aragon) from 1516 to 1556, and Lord of the Netherlands as titular Duke of Burgundy from 1506 to 1555. As head of the rising House of Habsburg during the first half of the 16th century, his dominions in Europe included the Holy Roman Empire, extending from Germany to northern Italy with direct rule over the Austrian hereditary lands and the Burgundian Low Countries, and a unified Spain with its southern Italian kingdoms of Naples, Sicily, and Sardinia. Furthermore, his reign encompassed both the long-lasting Spanish and the short-lived German colonizations of the Americas. The personal union of the European and American territories of Charles V was the first collection of realms labelled "the empire on which the Sun never sets".[1]

Charles was born in the County of Flanders to Philip the Handsome of the Austrian House of Habsburg (son of Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor, and Mary of Burgundy) and Joanna the Mad of the Spanish House of Trastámara (daughter of Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon). The ultimate heir of his four grandparents, he inherited all of his family dominions at a young age, due to the premature death of his father and the mental illness of his mother. After the death of Philip in 1506, he inherited the Burgundian Netherlands, originally held by his paternal grandmother Mary.[2] In 1516, he became co-monarch of Spain with his mother Joanna, and as such he was the first king of Spain to inherit the country as dynastically unified by the Catholic Monarchs, his maternal grandparents.[3] The Spanish possessions at his accession also included the Castilian West Indies and the Aragonese Kingdoms of Naples, Sicily and Sardinia. At the death of his paternal grandfather Maximilian in 1519, he inherited Austria and was elected to succeed him as Holy Roman Emperor. He adopted the Imperial name of Charles V as his main title, and styled himself as a new Charlemagne.[4]

Charles V revitalized the medieval concept of the universal monarchy and spent most of his life defending the integrity of the Holy Roman Empire from the Protestant Reformation, the expansion of the Ottoman Empire, and a series of wars with France.[5] With no fixed capital city, he made 40 journeys, travelling from country to country; he spent a quarter of his reign on the road.[6] The imperial wars were fought by German Landsknechte, Spanish tercios, Burgundian knights, and Italian condottieri. Charles V borrowed money from German and Italian bankers and, in order to repay such loans, he relied on the proto-capitalist economy of the Low Countries and on the flows of gold and especially silver from South America to Spain. The gold and silver caused widespread inflation. He ratified the Spanish conquest of the Aztec and Inca empires by the Spanish Conquistadores Hernán Cortés and Francisco Pizarro, as well as the establishment of Klein-Venedig by the German Welser family in search of the legendary El Dorado. In order to consolidate power in his early reign, Charles suppressed two Spanish insurrections (Comuneros' Revolt and Brotherhoods' Revolt) and two German rebellions (Knights' Revolt and Great Peasants' Revolt).

Crowned King in Germany, Charles sided with Pope Leo X and declared Martin Luther an outlaw at the Diet of Worms (1521).[7] The same year Francis I of France, surrounded by the Habsburg possessions, started a conflict in Lombardy that lasted until the Battle of Pavia (1525) led to his temporary imprisonment. The Protestant affair re-emerged in 1527 as Rome was sacked by an army of Charles's mutinous soldiers, largely of Lutheran faith. After his forces left the Papal States, Charles V defended Vienna from the Turks and obtained the coronation as King in Italy by Pope Clement VII. In 1535, he annexed the vacant Duchy of Milan and captured Tunis. Nevertheless, the loss of Buda during the struggle for Hungary and the Algiers expedition in the early 40s frustrated his anti-Ottoman policies. Meanwhile, Charles V had come to an agreement with Pope Paul III for the organisation of the Council of Trent (1545). The refusal of the Lutheran

Charles was born in the County of Flanders to Philip the Handsome of the Austrian House of Habsburg (son of Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor, and Mary of Burgundy) and Joanna the Mad of the Spanish House of Trastámara (daughter of Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon). The ultimate heir of his four grandparents, he inherited all of his family dominions at a young age, due to the premature death of his father and the mental illness of his mother. After the death of Philip in 1506, he inherited the Burgundian Netherlands, originally held by his paternal grandmother Mary.[2] In 1516, he became co-monarch of Spain with his mother Joanna, and as such he was the first king of Spain to inherit the country as dynastically unified by the Catholic Monarchs, his maternal grandparents.[3] The Spanish possessions at his accession also included the Castilian West Indies and the Aragonese Kingdoms of Naples, Sicily and Sardinia. At the death of his paternal grandfather Maximilian in 1519, he inherited Austria and was elected to succeed him as Holy Roman Emperor. He adopted the Imperial name of Charles V as his main title, and styled himself as a new Charlemagne.[4]

Charles V revitalized the medieval concept of the universal monarchy and spent most of his life defending the integrity of the Holy Roman Empire from the Protestant Reformation, the expansion of the Ottoman Empire, and a series of wars with France.[5] With no fixed capital city, he made 40 journeys, travelling from country to country; he spent a quarter of his reign on the road.[6] The imperial wars were fought by German Landsknechte, Spanish tercios, Burgundian knights, and Italian condottieri. Charles V borrowed money from German and Italian bankers and, in order to repay such loans, he relied on the proto-capitalist economy of the Low Countries and on the flows of gold and especially silver from South America to Spain. The gold and silver caused widespread inflation. He ratified the Spanish conquest of the Aztec and Inca empires by the Spanish Conquistadores Hernán Cortés and Francisco Pizarro, as well as the establishment of Klein-Venedig by the German Welser family in search of the legendary El Dorado. In order to consolidate power in his early reign, Charles suppressed two Spanish insurrections (Comuneros' Revolt and Brotherhoods' Revolt) and two German rebellions (Knights' Revolt and Great Peasants' Revolt).

Crowned King in Germany, Charles sided with Pope Leo X and declared Martin Luther an outlaw at the Diet of Worms (1521).[7] The same year Francis I of France, surrounded by the Habsburg possessions, started a conflict in Lombardy that lasted until the Battle of Pavia (1525) led to his temporary imprisonment. The Protestant affair re-emerged in 1527 as Rome was sacked by an army of Charles's mutinous soldiers, largely of Lutheran faith. After his forces left the Papal States, Charles V defended Vienna from the Turks and obtained the coronation as King in Italy by Pope Clement VII. In 1535, he annexed the vacant Duchy of Milan and captured Tunis. Nevertheless, the loss of Buda during the struggle for Hungary and the Algiers expedition in the early 40s frustrated his anti-Ottoman policies. Meanwhile, Charles V had come to an agreement with Pope Paul III for the organisation of the Council of Trent (1545). The refusal of the Lutheran Schmalkaldic League to recognize the council's validity led to a war, won by Charles V with the imprisonment of the Protestant princes. However, Henry II of France offered new support to the Lutheran cause and strengthened a close alliance with the sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, the ruler of the Ottoman Empire since 1520.

Ultimately, Charles V conceded the Peace of Augsburg and abandoned his multi-national project with a series of abdications in 1556 that divided his hereditary and imperial domains between the Spanish Habsburgs headed by his son Philip II of Spain and the Austrian Habsburgs headed by his brother Ferdinand, who was Archduke of Austria in Charles's name since 1521 and the designated successor as emperor since 1531.[8][9][10] The Duchy of Milan and the Habsburg Netherlands were left in personal union to the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. The two Habsburg dynasties remained allied until the extinction of the Spanish line in 1700. In 1557, Charles retired to the Monastery of Yuste in Extremadura and died there a year later.

You, noble prince Charles, are more blessed than Alexander the Great. He for his part had seized an immense empire, but not without bloodshed nor was it destined to endure...you were born to a splendid empire...you owe it to heaven that your empire came to you without the shedding of blood, and no one suffered for it.[11]

Entrance gate to the Prinsenhof (Flemish Dutch; literally "Princes' court") in Ghent, where Charles was born.

Charles of Habsburg was born on 24 February 1500 in the Prinsenhof of Ghent, a Flemish city of the Burgundian Low Countries, to Philip of Habsburg and Joanna of Trastámara.[12] His father Philip, nicknamed Philip the HandsomeCharles of Habsburg was born on 24 February 1500 in the Prinsenhof of Ghent, a Flemish city of the Burgundian Low Countries, to Philip of Habsburg and Joanna of Trastámara.[12] His father Philip, nicknamed Philip the Handsome, was the firstborn son of Maximilian I of Habsburg, Archduke of Austria as well as Holy Roman Emperor, and Mary the Rich, Burgundian duchess of the Low Countries. His mother Joanna, known as Joanna the Mad for the mental disorders afflicting her, was a daughter of Ferdinand II of Aragon and Isabella I of Castile, the Catholic Monarchs of Spain from the House of Trastámara. The political marriage of Philip and Joanna was first conceived in a letter sent by Maximilian to Ferdinand in order to seal an Austro-Spanish alliance, established as part of the League of Venice directed against the Kingdom of France during the Italian Wars.[13]

The organization of ambitious political marriages reflected Maximilian's practice to expand the House of Habsburg with dynastic links rather than conquest, as exemplified by his saying "Let others wage war, you, happy Austria, marry". The marriage contract between Philip and Joanna was signed in 1495, and celebrations were held in 1496. Philip was already Duke of Burgundy, given Mary's death in 1482, and also heir apparent of Austria as honorific Archduke. Joanna, on the other hand, was only third in the Spanish line of succession, preceded by her older brother John of Castile and older sister Isabella of Aragon. Although both John and Isabella died in 1498, the Catholic Monarchs desired to keep the Spanish kingdoms in Iberian hands and designated their Portuguese nephew Miguel da Paz as heir presumptive of Spain by naming him Prince of the Asturias. Only a series of dynastic accidents eventually favoured Maximilian's project.[14]

Charles was given birth in a bathroom of the Prinsenhof at 3:00 AM by Joanna not long after she attended a ball despite symptoms of labor pains, and his name was chosen by Philip in honour of Charles I of Burgundy. According to a poet at the court, the people of Ghent "shouted Austria and Burgundy throughout the whole city for three hours" to celebrate his birth.[15] Given the dynastic situation, the newborn was originally heir apparent only of the Burgundian Low Countries as the honorific Duke of Luxembourg and became known in his early years simply as Charles of Ghent. He was baptized at the Saint Bavo's Cathedral by the Bishop of Tournai: Charles I de Croÿ and John III of Glymes were his godfathers; Margaret of York and Margaret of Austria his godmothers. Charles's baptism gifts were a sword and a helmet, objects of Burgundian chivalric tradition representing, respectively, the instrument of war and the symbol of peace.[16]

A painting representing the extended Habsburg family, with a young Charles in the middle.

In 1501, Philip and Joanna left Charles to the custody of his aunt Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy and went to Spain. They returned to visit their son very rarely, and thus Charles grew up parentless in Mechelen together with his sisters Eleanora, Maria and Isabella at the Duchess's court. He received education from Willem II of Croÿ and Adrian of Utrecht. The main goal of their Spanish mission was the recognition of Joanna as Princess of Asturias, given prince Miguel's death a year earlier. They succeeded despite facing some opposition from the Spanis

The organization of ambitious political marriages reflected Maximilian's practice to expand the House of Habsburg with dynastic links rather than conquest, as exemplified by his saying "Let others wage war, you, happy Austria, marry". The marriage contract between Philip and Joanna was signed in 1495, and celebrations were held in 1496. Philip was already Duke of Burgundy, given Mary's death in 1482, and also heir apparent of Austria as honorific Archduke. Joanna, on the other hand, was only third in the Spanish line of succession, preceded by her older brother John of Castile and older sister Isabella of Aragon. Although both John and Isabella died in 1498, the Catholic Monarchs desired to keep the Spanish kingdoms in Iberian hands and designated their Portuguese nephew Miguel da Paz as heir presumptive of Spain by naming him Prince of the Asturias. Only a series of dynastic accidents eventually favoured Maximilian's project.[14]

Charles was given birth in a bathroom of the Prinsenhof at 3:00 AM by Joanna not long after she attended a ball despite symptoms of labor pains, and his name was chosen by Philip in honour of Charles I of Burgundy. According to a poet at the court, the people of Ghent "shouted Austria and Burgundy throughout the whole city for three hours" to celebrate his birth.[15] Given the dynastic situation, the newborn was originally heir apparent only of the Burgundian Low Countries as the honorific Duke of Luxembourg and became known in his early years simply as Charles of Ghent. He was baptized at the Saint Bavo's Cathedral by the Bishop of Tournai: Charles I de Croÿ and John III of Glymes were his godfathers; Margaret of York and Margaret of Austria his godmothers. Charles's baptism gifts were a sword and a helmet, objects of Burgundian chivalric tradition representing, respectively, the instrument of war and the symbol of peace.[16]

In 1501, Philip and Joanna left Charles to the custody of his aunt Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy and went to Spain. They returned to visit their son very rarely, and thus Charles grew up parentless in Mechelen together with his sisters Eleanora, Maria and Isabella at the Duchess's court. He received education from Willem II of Croÿ and Adrian of Utrecht. The main goal of their Spanish mission was the recognition of Joanna as Princess of Asturias, given prince Miguel's death a year earlier. They succeeded despite facing some opposition from the Spanish Cortes, reluctanct to create the premises for Habsburg succession. In 1504, as Isabella passed away, Joanna became Queen of Castile. Philip was recognized King in 1506 but died shortly after, an event that drove the mentally unstable Joanna into complete insanity. She retired in isolation into a tower of Tordesillas. Ferdinand took control of all the Spanish kingdoms, under the pretext of protecting Charles's rights, which in reality he wanted to elude, but his new marriage with Germaine de Foix failed to produce a surviving Trastámara heir to the throne. With his father dead and his mother confined, Charles became Duke of Burgundy and was recognized as prince of Asturias (heir presumptive of Spain) and honorific archduke (heir apparent of Austria).[17]

Inheritances

Habsburg Netherlands, which consisted of a large number of the lordships that formed the Low Countries and covered modern-day Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg. It excluded Burgundy proper, annexed by France in 1477, with the exception of Franche-Comté. At the death of Philip in 1506, Charles was recognized Lord of the Netherlands with the title of Charles II of Burgundy. During Charles's childhood and teen years, William de Croÿ (later prime minister) and Adrian of Utrecht (later Pope Adrian VI) served as his tutors. The culture and courtly life of the Low Countries played an important part in the development of Charles's beliefs. As a member of the Burgundian Order of the Golden Fleece in his infancy, and later its grandmaster, Charles was educated to the ideals of the medieval knights and the desire for Christian unity to fight the infidel.[18] The Low Countries were very rich during his reign, both economically and culturally. Charles was very attached to his homeland and spent much of his life in Brussels.

The Spanish inheritance, resulting from a dynastic union of the crowns of Castile and Aragon, included Spain as well as the Castilian West Indies and the Aragonese Two Sicilies. Joanna inherited these territories in 1516 in a condition of mental illness. Charles, therefore, claimed the crowns for himself jure matris, thus

The Spanish inheritance, resulting from a dynastic union of the crowns of Castile and Aragon, included Spain as well as the Castilian West Indies and the Aragonese Two Sicilies. Joanna inherited these territories in 1516 in a condition of mental illness. Charles, therefore, claimed the crowns for himself jure matris, thus becoming co-monarch of Joanna with the title of Charles I of Castile and Aragon or Charles I of Spain. Castile and Aragon together formed the largest of Charles's personal possessions, and they also provided a great number of generals and tercios (the formidable Spanish infantry of the time). However, at his accession to the throne, Charles was viewed as a foreign prince. Two rebellions, the revolt of the Germanies and the revolt of the comuneros, contested Charles's rule in the 1520s. Following these revolts, Charles placed Spanish counselors in a position of power and spent a considerable part of his life in Castile, including his final years in a monastery. Indeed, Charles's motto, Plus Ultra (Further Beyond), became the national motto of Spain and his heir, later Philip II, was born and raised in Castile. Nonetheless, many Spaniards believed that their resources (largely consisting of flows of silver from the Americas) were being used to sustain Imperial-Habsburg policies that were not in the country's interest.[19]

Charles inherited the Austrian hereditary lands in 1519, as Charles I of Austria, and obtained the election as Holy Roman Emperor against the candidacy of the French King. Since the Imperial election, he was known as Emperor Charles V even outside of Germany and the A.E.I.O.U. motto of the House of Austria acquired political significance. Despite the fact that he was elected as a German prince, Charles's staunch Catholicism in contrast to the growth of Lutheranism alienated him from various German princes who finally fought against him. Charles's presence in Germany was often marked by the organization of imperial diets to maintain religious unity. He was frequently in Northern Italy,

Charles inherited the Austrian hereditary lands in 1519, as Charles I of Austria, and obtained the election as Holy Roman Emperor against the candidacy of the French King. Since the Imperial election, he was known as Emperor Charles V even outside of Germany and the A.E.I.O.U. motto of the House of Austria acquired political significance. Despite the fact that he was elected as a German prince, Charles's staunch Catholicism in contrast to the growth of Lutheranism alienated him from various German princes who finally fought against him. Charles's presence in Germany was often marked by the organization of imperial diets to maintain religious unity. He was frequently in Northern Italy, often taking part in complicated negotiations with the Popes to address the rise of Protestantism. It is important to note, though, that the German Catholics supported the Emperor. Charles had a close relationship with important German families, like the House of Nassau, many of which were represented at his court in Brussels. Several German princes or noblemen accompanied him in his military campaigns against France or the Ottomans, and the bulk of his army was generally composed of German troops, especially the Imperial Landsknechte.[20][21]

It is said that Charles spoke several languages. He was fluent in French and Dutch, his native languages. He later added an acceptable Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[22] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election, though he never spoke it as well as French.[23] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles is: "I speak Spanish/Latin (depending on the source) to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[24] A variant of the quote is attributed to him by Swift in his 1726 Gulliver's Travels, but there are no contemporary accounts referencing the quotation (which has many other variants) and it is often attributed instead to Frederick the Great.[25][26]

Given the vast dominions of the House of Habsburg, Charles was often on the road and needed deputies to govern his realms for the times he was absent from his territories. His first Governor of the Netherlands was Margaret of Austria (succeeded by Mary of Hungary and Emmanuel Philibert, Duke of Savoy). His first Regent of Spain was Adrian of Utrecht (succeeded by Isabella of Portugal and Philip II of Spain). For the regency and governorship of the Austrian hereditary lands, Charles named his brother Ferdinand Archduke in the Austrian lands under his authority at the Diet of Worms (1521). Charles also agreed to favor the election of Ferdinand as King of the Romans in Germany, which took place in 1531. Therefore, it is by virtue of the Worms agreement that Ferdinand became Holy Roman Emperor and obtained hereditary rights over Austria at the abdication of Charles in 1556.[8][27]

Charles V made ten trips to the Low Countries, nine to German-speaking lands, seven to Spain, seven to Italian states, four to France, two to England, and two to North Africa.[6] During his travels, Charles V left a documentary trail in almost every place he went, allowing historians to surmise that he spent over 10,000 days in the Low Countries, 6,500 days in Spain, more than 3000 days in German-speaking territories, and almost 1,000 days in the Italian peninsula. He further spent 195 days in France, 99 in North Africa and 44 days in England. For only 260 days, his exact location is unrecorded, all of them being days spent at sea travelling between his dominions.[28] As he put it in his last public speech: "my life has been one long journey".[29]

Charles V had two conflicting strategies: enhancing the possessions of his family, and protecting Catholicism against Protestants heretics. In both cases, very expensive wars were necessary which diverted resources away from building up the Spanish economy. Elite elements in Spain called for more protection for the commercial networks, which were threatened by the Ottoman Empire. Charles instead focused on defeating Protestantism in Germany and the Netherlands, which proved to be lost causes. Each hastened the economic decline of the Spanish Empire in the next generation.[30]

Burgundy and the Low Countries

During Charles's reign, the Castilian territories in the Americas were considerably extended by conquistadores like Hernán Cortés and Francisco Pizarro. They conquered the large Aztec and Inca empires and incorporated them into the Empire as the Viceroyalties of New Spain and Peru between 1519 and 1542. Combined with the circumnavigation of the globe by the Magellan expedition in 1522, these successes convinced Charles of his divine mission to become the leader of Christendom, which still perceived a significant threat from Islam. The conquests also helped solidify Charles's rule by providing the state treasury with enormous amounts of bullion. As the conquistador Bernal Díaz del Castillo observed, "We came to serve Go

In addition, Habsburg trade in the Mediterranean was consistently disrupted by the Ottoman Empire. In 1538 a Holy League consisting of all the Italian states and the Spanish kingdoms was formed to drive the Ottomans back, but it was defeated at the Battle of Preveza. Decisive naval victory eluded Charles; it would not be achieved until after Charles's death, at the Battle of Lepanto in 1571.

During Charles's reign, the Castilian territories in the Americas were considerably extended by conquistadores like Hernán Cortés and Francisco Pizarro. They conquered the large Aztec and Inca empires and incorporated them into the Empire as the Viceroyalties of New Spain and Peru between 1519 and 1542. Combined with the circumnavigation of the globe by the Magellan expedition in 1522, these successes convinced Charles of his divine mission to become the leader of Christendom, which still perceived a significant threat from Islam. The conquests also helped solidify Charles's rule by providing the state treasury with enormous amounts of bullion. As the conquistador Bernal Díaz del Castillo observed, "We came to serve God and his Majesty, to give light to those in darkness, and also to acquire that wealth which most men covet."[51] Charles used the Spanish feudal system as a model for labor relations in the new colonies. The local Spaniards strongly objected because it assumed the equality of Indians and Spaniards. The locals wanted complete control over labor and got it under Philip II in the 1570s.[52]

On 28 August 1518, Charles issued a charter authorizing the transportation of slaves direct from Africa to the Americas. Up until that point (since at least 1510), African slaves had usually been transported to Castile or Portugal and had then been transhipped to the Caribbean. Charles's decision to create a dire

On 28 August 1518, Charles issued a charter authorizing the transportation of slaves direct from Africa to the Americas. Up until that point (since at least 1510), African slaves had usually been transported to Castile or Portugal and had then been transhipped to the Caribbean. Charles's decision to create a direct, more economically viable Africa to America slave trade fundamentally changed the nature and scale of the transatlantic slave trade.[53]

In 1528 Charles assigned a concession in Venezuela Province to Bartholomeus V. Welser, in compensation for his inability to repay debts owed. The concession, known as Klein-Venedig (little Venice), was revoked in 1546. In 1550, Charles convened a conference at Valladolid in order to consider the morality of the force[54] used against the indigenous populations of the New World, which included figures such as Bartolomé de las Casas.

Charles V is credited with the first idea of constructing an American Isthmus canal in Panama as early as 1520.[55]

After the death of his paternal grandfather, Maximilian, in 1519, Charles inherited the Habsburg Monarchy. He was also the natural candidate of the electors to succeed his grandfather as Holy Roman Emperor. After having paid huge bribes to the electors, he defeated the candidacies of Frederick III of Saxony, Francis I of France, and Henry VIII of England. Charles was the highest bidder and won the crown on 28 June 1519. On 26 October 1520 he was crowned in Germany and some ten years later, on 22 February 1530, he was crowned Holy Roman Emperor by Pope Clement VII in Bologna, the last emperor to receive a papal coronation.[56][57]

Despite holding the imperial throne, Charles's real authority was limited by the German princes. They gained a strong foothold in the Empire's territories, and Charles was determined not to let this happen in the Netherlands. An inquisition was established as early as 1522. In 1550, the death penalty was introduced for all cases of unrepentant heresy. Political dissent was also firmly controlled, most notably in his place of birth, where Charles, assisted by the Duke of Alba, personally suppressed the Revolt of Ghent in mid-February 1540.[33]

Charles abdicated as emperor in 1556 in favour of his brother Ferdinand; however, due to lengthy debate and bureaucratic procedure, the Imperial Diet did not accept the abdication (and thus make it legally valid) until 24 February 1558. Up to that date, Charles continued to use the title of emperor.

Wars with France

Charles suffered from an enlarged lower jaw, a congenital deformity that became considerably worse in later Habsburg generations, giving rise to the term Habsburg jaw. This deformity may have been caused by the family's long history of inbreeding, the consequence of repeated marriages between close family members, as commonly practiced in royal families of that era to maintain dynastic control of territory.[80] He suffered from epilepsy[81] and was seriously afflicted with gout, presumably caused by a diet consisting mainly of red meat.[82] As he aged, his gout progressed from painful to crippling. In his retirement, he was carried around the monastery of St. Yuste in a sedan chair. A ramp was specially constructed to allow him easy access to his rooms.[83]

Abdications and death

Charles and Isabella had seven children, though only three survived to adulthood:

Name Portrait Lifespan Notes
Philip II of Spain
Portrait of Philip II of Spain by Sofonisba Anguissola - 002b.jpg
Name Portrait Lifespan Notes
Philip II of Spain
Due to Philip II being a grandson of Manuel I of Portugal through his mother he was in the line of succession to the throne of Portugal, and claimed it after his uncle's death (Henry, the Cardinal-King, in 1580), thus establishing the personal union between Spain and Portugal.

Charles also had four illegitimate children:

Titles

Charles V styled himself as Holy Roman Emperor since his election, according to a Papal dispensation conferred to the Habsburg family by Pope Julius II in 1508 and confirmed in 1519 to the prince-electors by the legates of Pope Leo X. Although Papal coronation was not necessary to confirm the Imperial title, Charles V was crowned in the city of Bologna by Pope Clement VII in the medieval fashion.

Charles V accumulated a large number of titles due to his vast inheritance of Burgundian, Spanish, and Austrian realms. Following the pacts of Worms (21 April 1521) and Brussels (7 February 1522), he secretly gave the Austrian lands to his younger brother Ferdinand and elevated him to the status of Archduke. Nevertheless, according to the agreements, Charles continued to style himself as Archduke of Austria and maintained that Ferdinand acted as his vassal and vicar.[96][97] Furthermore, the pacts of 1521–1522 imposed restrictions on the governorship and regency of Ferdinand. For example, all of Ferdinand's letters to Charles V were signed "your obedient brother and servant".[98] Nonetheless, the same agreements promised Ferdinand the designation as future emperor and the transfer of hereditary rights over Austria at the imperial succession.

Following the death of Louis II, King of Hungary and Bohemia, at the Battle of Mohacs in 1526, Charles V favored the election of Ferdinand as king of Hungary (and Croatia and Dalmatia) and Bohemia. Despite this, Charles also styled himself as king of Hungary and Bohemia and retained this titular use in official acts (such as his testament) as in the case of the Austrian lands. As a consequence, cartographers and historians have described those kingdoms both as realms of Charles V and as possessions of Ferdinand, not without confusion. Others, such as the Venetian envoys, reported that the states of Ferdinand were "all held in common with the Emperor".[99]

Therefore, although he had agreed on the future division of the dynasty between Ferdinand and Philip II of Spain, during his own reign Charles V conceived the existence of a single "House of Austria" of which he was the sole head.[100] In the abdications of 1554–1556, Charles left his personal possessions to Philip II and the Imperial title to Ferdinand. The titles of King of Hungary, of Dalmatia, Croatia, etc., were also nominally left to the Spanish line (in particular to Don Carlos, Prince of Asturias and son of Philip II). However, Charles's Imperial abdication marked the beginning of Ferdinand's suo jure rule in Austria and his other lands: despite the claims of Philip and his descendants, Hungary and Bohemia were left under the nominal and substantial rule of Ferdinand and his successors. Formal disputes between the two lines over Hungary and Bohemia will be solved with the Onate treaty of 1617.

Charles's full titulature went as follows:

Charles, by the grace of God, Emperor of the Romans, forever August, King of Germany, King of Italy, King of all Spains, of Castile, Aragon, León, of Hungary, of Dalmatia, of Croatia, Navarra, Grenada, Toledo, Valencia, Galicia, Majorca, Sevilla, Cordova, Murcia, Jaén, Algarves, Algeciras, Gibraltar, the Canary Islands, King of Two Sicilies, of Sardinia, Corsica, King of Jerusalem, King of the Indies, of the Islands and Mainland of the Ocean Sea, Archduke of Austria, Duke of Burgundy, Brabant, Lorraine, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola, Limburg, Luxembourg, Gelderland, Neopatria, Württemberg, Landgrave of Alsace, Prince of Swabia, Asturia and Catalonia, Count of Flanders, Habsburg, Tyrol, Gorizia, Barcelona, Artois, Burgundy Palatine, Hainaut, Holland, Seeland, Ferrette, Kyburg, Namur, Roussillon, Cerdagne, Drenthe, Zutphen, Margrave of the Holy Roman Empire, Burgau, Oristano and

Charles also had four illegitimate children:

Charles V styled himself as Holy Roman Emperor since his election, according to a Papal dispensation conferred to the Habsburg family by Pope Julius II in 1508 and confirmed in 1519 to the prince-electors by the legates of Pope Leo X. Although Papal coronation was not necessary to confirm the Imperial title, Charles V was crowned in the city of Bologna by Pope Clement VII in the medieval fashion.

Charles V accumulated a large number of titles due to his vast inheritance of Burgundian, Spanish, and Austrian realms. Following the pacts of Worms (21 April 1521) and Brussels (7 February 1522), he secretly gave the Austrian lands to his younger brother Ferdinand and elevated him to the status of Archduke. Nevertheless, according to the agreements, Charles continued to style himself as Archduke of Austria and maintained that Ferdinand acted as his vassal and vicar.[96][97] Furthermore, the pacts of 1521–1522 imposed restrictions on the governorship and regency of Ferdinand. For example, all of Ferdinand's letters to Charles V were signed "your obedient brother and servant".[98] Nonetheless, the same agreements promised Ferdinand the designation as future emperor and the transfer of hereditary rights over Austria at the imperial succession.

Following the death of Louis II, King of Hungary and Bohemia, at the Battle of Mohacs in 1526, Charles V favored the election of Ferdinand as king of Hungary (and Croatia and Dalmatia) and Bohemia. Despite this, Charles also styled himself as king of Hungary and Bohemia and retained this titular use in official acts (such as his testament) as in the case of the Austrian lands. As a consequence, cartographers and historians have described those kingdoms both as realms of Charles V and as possessions of Ferdinand, not without confusion. Others, such as the Venetian envoys, reported that the states of Ferdinand were "all held in common with the Emperor".[99]

Therefore, although he had agreed on the future division of the dynasty between Ferdinand and Philip II of Spain, during his own reign Charles V conceived the existence of a single "House of Austria" of which he was the sole head.[100] In the abdications of 1554–1556, Charles left his personal possessions to Philip II and the Imperial title to Ferdinand. The titles of King of Hungary, of Dalmatia, Croatia, etc., were also nominally left to the Spanish line (in particular to Don Carlos, Prince of Asturias and son of Philip II). However, Charles's Imperial abdication marked the beginning of Ferdinand's suo jure rule in Austria and his other lands: despite the claims of Philip and his descendants, Hungary and Bohemia were left under the nominal and substantial rule of Ferdinand and his successors. Formal disputes between the two lines over Hungary and Bohemia will be solved with the Onate treaty of 1617.

Charles's full titulature w

Charles V accumulated a large number of titles due to his vast inheritance of Burgundian, Spanish, and Austrian realms. Following the pacts of Worms (21 April 1521) and Brussels (7 February 1522), he secretly gave the Austrian lands to his younger brother Ferdinand and elevated him to the status of Archduke. Nevertheless, according to the agreements, Charles continued to style himself as Archduke of Austria and maintained that Ferdinand acted as his vassal and vicar.[96][97] Furthermore, the pacts of 1521–1522 imposed restrictions on the governorship and regency of Ferdinand. For example, all of Ferdinand's letters to Charles V were signed "your obedient brother and servant".[98] Nonetheless, the same agreements promised Ferdinand the designation as future emperor and the transfer of hereditary rights over Austria at the imperial succession.

Following the death of Louis II, King of Hungary and Bohemia, at the Battle of Mohacs in 1526, Charles V favored the election of Ferdinand as king of Hungary (and Croatia and Dalmatia) and Bohemia. Despite this, Charles also styled himself as king of Hungary and Bohemia and retained this titular use in official acts (such as his testament) as in the case of the Austrian lands. As a consequence, cartographers and historians have described those kingdoms both as realms of Charles V and as possessions of Ferdinand, not without confusion. Others, such as the Venetian envoys, reported that the states of Ferdinand were "all held in common with the Emperor".[99]

Therefore, although he had agreed on the future division of the dynasty between Ferdinand and Philip II of Spain, during his own reign Charles V conceived the existence of a single "House of Austria" of which he was the sole head.[100] In the abdications of 1554–1556, Charles left his personal possessions to Philip II and the Imperial title to Ferdinand. The titles of King of Hungary, of Dalmatia, Croatia, etc., were also nominally left to the Spanish line (in particular to Don Carlos, Prince of Asturias and son of Philip II). However, Charles's Imperial abdication marked the beginning of Ferdinand's suo jure rule in Austria and his other lands: despite the claims of Philip and his descendants, Hungary and Bohemia were left under the nominal and substantial rule of Ferdinand and his successors. Formal disputes between the two lines over Hungary and Bohemia will be solved with the Onate treaty of 1617.

Charles's full titulature went as follows:

Charles, by the grace of God, Emperor of the Romans, forever August, King of Germany, King of Italy, King of all Spains, of Castile, Aragon, León, of Hungary, of Dalmatia, of Croatia, Navarra, Grenada, Toledo, Valencia, Galicia, Majorca, Sevilla, Cordova, Murcia, Jaén, Algarves, Algeciras, Gibraltar, the Canary Islands, King of Two Sicilies, of Sardinia, Corsica, King of Jerusalem, King of the Indies, of the Islands and Mainland of the Ocean Sea, Archduke of Austria, Duke of Burgundy, Brabant, Lorraine, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola, Limburg, Luxembourg, Gelderland, Neopatria, Württemberg, Landgrave of Alsace, Prince of Swabia, Asturia and Catalonia, Count of Flanders, Habsburg, Tyrol, Gorizia, Barcelona, Artois, Burgundy Palatine, Hainaut, Holland, Seeland, Ferrette, Kyburg, Namur, Roussillon, Cerdagne, Drenthe, Zutphen, Margrave of the Holy Roman Empire, Burgau, Oristano and Gociano, Lord of Frisia, the Wendish March, Pordenone, Biscay, Molin, Salins, Tripoli and Mechelen.[citation needed]

Coat of arms of Charles I of Spain and V of the Holy Roman Empire according to the description: Arms of Charles I added to those of Castile, Leon, Aragon, Two Sicilies and Granada present in the previous coat, those of Austria, ancient Burgundy, modern Burgundy, Brabant, Flanders and Tyrol. Charles I also incorporates the pillars of Hercules with the inscription "Plus Ultra", representing the overseas empire and surrounding coat with the collar of the Golden Fleece, as sovereign of the Order ringing the shield with the imperial crown and Acola double-headed eagle of the Holy Roman Empire and behind it the Spanish Cross of Burgundy. From 1520 added to the corresponding quarter to Aragon and Sicily, one in which the arms of Jerusalem, Naples and Navarre are incorporated.

Ancestors