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Henri IV - An unfinished reign


César de Bourbon


César de Bourbon was the oldest illegitimate son of Henri IV and Gabrielle d’Estrées.

Legitimised in 1595, he was given the title of duc de Vendôme. He was appointed governor of Brittany in 1598 at the age of four. His propensity for plotting earned him exile on several occasions under Louis XIII, but was later named grand admiral of France in 1651 and grand master of navigation in 1655.

Putative portrait of César, son of Henri IV
© RMN / Thierry Le Mage
Putative portrait of César, duc de Vendôme, drawing by Daniel Dumontier, 16th-17th c. Musée du Louvre, INV26365

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