Skip to main content

Charlotte of Savoy (c. 1442–1483)

Charlotte of Savoy (c. 1442–1483)

Queen of France. Name variations: Charlotte d'Savoie. Born in 1442 (some sources cite 1439, 1440 or 1445); died on December 1, 1483 (some sources cite 1515); daughter of Louis I, prince of Piedmont and duke of Savoy, and Anne of Lusignan ; sister of Bona of Savoy (c. 1450–c. 1505); became second wife of Louis XI (1423–1483), king of France (r. 1461–1483), in March 1451; children: Joachim (b. 1459, died at age four months); Anne of Beaujeu (c. 1460–1522); Francis (1466–1466); Charles VIII (1470–1498), king of France (r. 1483–1498); Francis (1473–1473); Jeanne de France (c. 1464–1505).

In March 1451, 28-year-old Louis (XI), then dauphin of France, married nine-year-old Charlotte of Savoy against his father's wishes. His father Charles VII, king of France, promptly deprived his son of his pension and confiscated his French lands. The king was also furious with Charlotte's father, the duke of Savoy, for entering into this marriage conspiracy, and threatened an invasion if the duke did not repudiate the 28-year-old dauphin. In the middle of this tempest, the English landed at Guienne, and father and son were forced to make up, at least temporarily. The marriage, however, was not consummated until 1457.

It was considered an agreeable union, despite the fact that Louis was rarely in the company of his wife. The patient and submissive Charlotte led a secluded existence with her children and her ladies-in-waiting at the royal castle in Amboise, on the Loire. Wrote Philippe de Commynes, Charlotte "was not one of those women in whom a man would take great pleasure but in all a very good lady." Despite a few dalliances, Louis was more faithful to Charlotte than was the norm for princes of his day. Louis died on August 30, 1483; Charlotte died three months later, on December 1.

Previously, in 1436, a 13-year-old Louis had married the charming Scottish princess and poet Margaret of Scotland (1425–1445), daughter of James I and Joan Beaufort . It is said that her marriage to Louis was so wretched that when she died at age 20, her parting words were: "Oh! fie on life! Speak to me no more of it."

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Charlotte of Savoy (c. 1442–1483)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . 23 Feb. 2019 <>.

"Charlotte of Savoy (c. 1442–1483)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . (February 23, 2019).

"Charlotte of Savoy (c. 1442–1483)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . Retrieved February 23, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.