Mancini, Olympia (c. 1639–1708)

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Mancini, Olympia (c. 1639–1708)

Princess of Savoy-Carignan, countess of Soissons, and mistress of Louis XIV . Name variations: Olympe or Olympie; comtesse de Soissons; countess of Soissons. Born around 1639; died in Brussels in 1708; second daughter of Laurent also seen as Lorenzo Mancini and the sister (maiden name Mazarini or Mazarino) of Cardinal Jules Mazarin (chief minister to the young LouisXIV); sister of Marie-Anne Mancini (1649–1714), Marie Mancini (1640–1715), Hortense Mancini (1646–1699), Laure Mancini (1635–1657); cousin of Anne-Marie Martinozzi (1637–1672) and Laura Martinozzi ; married Eugene Maurice de Savoie-Carignan, prince of Savoy-Carignan, in 1657 (died 1673); children: Louis (who served in the army of Baden); Prince Eugene of Savoy (1663–1736).

Olympia Mancini was the wife of Eugene Maurice de Savoie-Carignan, and the mother of Prince Eugene of Savoy, a general who led the armies of Austria in victories over the French and the Turks, establishing Habsburg control over Northern Italy, Hungary, Serbia, and Transylvania, and ending the Turkish threat to Central Europe. Prince Eugene's origins and childhood were shadowed by the intrigues of Versailles, where Cardinal Jules Mazarin entertained hopes of engineering a romance between his niece Olympia and the future French king, Louis XIV. Though they had only a youthful affection for each other, Olympia and Louis were together for a time, prompting rumors that Louis was actually Eugene's father. Olympia was also embroiled, along with her sister Marie-Anne Mancini , in the "Affair of the Poisons." Accused of poisoning her husband and Marie Louise d'Orleans , queen of Spain, Olympia fled France to the Netherlands and eventually died in poverty in Brussels.