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Reincarnating the Forgotten Francis II: From Puerile Pubescent to Heroic Heartthrob

  • Kelly D. Peebles
Chapter
Part of the Queenship and Power book series (QAP)

Abstract

Son of Henry II and Catherine de Medici, Francis II acceded to the throne in 1559 at the age of 15, not long after his marriage to Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots. Francis’s death was sudden and unexpected, brought on by an abscessed ear infection on 5 December 1560 in Orléans, at a time when religious tension between Catholics and Calvinists was reaching a fever pitch. This chapter reconstructs the posthumous reincarnation of Francis II in two sixteenth-century pamphlets, in Charles-Jean-François Hénault’s eighteenth-century play, François II, roi de France, and in the recent television program Reign. Images of Francis II range from that of a puerile pubescent in these early modern works to that of a heroic heartthrob in the CW Network’s 2013–2017 fantasy drama.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kelly D. Peebles
    • 1
  1. 1.Clemson UniversityClemsonUSA

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