De barmhartige Augusta | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 134 Number 1
  • ISSN: 0040-7518
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1163



This article shows that Margaret of Brabant (1276-1311), Queen of the Romans, played an influential diplomatic and moral role on the international stage and had great influence on her husband, the Holy Roman Emperor Henry VII, in the perception of her contemporaries, who glorified the love between the two. A study of several letters addressed to her shows how Margaret helped her spouse to build a stable political network based on personal relations. This article then discusses the perception of Margaret in contemporary historiography and it demonstrates that early humanists Albertino Mussato and Giovanni de Cermenate both acknowledge her importance as a political counselor and mediator crucial to Henry’s reign. This view contrasts with other accounts of her life, in which she is solely remembered for her piety and holiness. Indeed, these aspects came to dominate the memory of Margaret soon after her death, as the Franciscans promoted her cult as ‘Holy Empress’.


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