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Henri IV - An unfinished reign

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Pavane pour le mariage de Henry


Source : ‘Henri IV et Marie de Médicis: Messe de mariage’; Doulce Mémoire; dir. Denis Raisin-Dadre; Astrée-Naïve E 8808 (2000).


After the sumptuous festivities in Florence, the new queen set sail for her new kingdom from Livorno. She landed in Marseille, and then travelled up the Rhone valley with her entire retinue. On 2 December 1600, she arrived in Lyon, where the French court awaited her. The French festivities began after the arrival of the king, on 9 December, and culminated on 17 December in the city's Saint-Jean cathedral: "the King and Queen, magnificently arrayed, accompanied by a brilliant Court and all of the Nobility, after dining, went to the Église Saint-Jean, where the Legate [Cardinal Aldobrandini] was waiting for them, assisted by Cardinals de Joyeuse, de Gondy, de Givry, and all of the Prelates who were in Lyon […] The trumpets entered the choir first, followed by a few richly attired gentilshommes; then, the chevaliers of the Saint-Esprit, and, after, the princes who went before the King, except for Monsieur le Prince de Conti, who led the Queen, on the right side, and Monsieur de Montpensier, on the other side. Madame de Nemours carried the Queen's train, on the right side, and Madame de Guise on the other side. Afterwards came Madamoiselle de Guise and the other Ladies, qui were sumptuously attired…" (P. de L’Estoile, Mémoires-Journaux, December 1600). The ceremony continued with a low mass, which "lasted a very short time" (L’Estoile), then by the final benediction of the marriage, given by Cardinal Aldobrandini.

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