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Claude de Lorraine, duc de Guise (20 October 1496, Château de Condé-sur-Moselle, – 12 April 1550, Château de Joinville) was a French aristocrat and general. He became the first Duke of Guise in 1528.

Claude de Lorraine
Duc de Guise
Portrait by Jean Clouet
Born(1496-10-20)20 October 1496
Château de Condé-sur-Moselle
Died12 April 1550(1550-04-12) (aged 53)
Château de Joinville
Noble familyLorraine
Spouse(s)Antoinette de Bourbon
(m. 1513–50; his death)
Marie, Queen of Scotland
Francis, Duke of Guise
Renée, Abbess of St. Pierre
Charles, Archbishop of Reims
Claude, Duke of Aumale
Louis I, Cardinal of Guise
Antoinette, Abbess of Faremoutier
Francis, Grand Prior of the Order of Malta
René, Marquis of Elbeuf
FatherRené II, Duke of Lorraine
MotherPhilippa of Guelders
ReligionRoman Catholicism
Coat of arms of the Duke of Guise

He was a highly effective general for the French crown. His children and grandchildren were to lead the Catholic party in the French Wars of Religion.



He was the second son of René II, Duke of Lorraine, and Philippa of Guelders.[1] He was educated at the French court of Francis I. At seventeen, Claude married Antoinette de Bourbon (1493–1583),[1] daughter of François, Count of Vendôme.

Military serviceEdit

Claude distinguished himself at the Battle of Marignano (1515),[2] and was long in recovering from the twenty-two wounds he received in the battle. In 1521, he fought at Fuenterrabia, and Louise of Savoy ascribed the capture of the place to his efforts. In 1523, he became governor of Champagne and Burgundy, after defeating at Neufchâteau the imperial troops who had invaded this province. In 1525, Claude defeated a peasant army near Saverne (Zabern).[3] On the return of Francis I from captivity in 1528, Claude was made Duke of Guise in the peerage of France, though up to this time only princes of the royal house had held the title of duke and peer of France. The Guises, as cadets of the sovereign House of Lorraine and descendants of the Capetian House of Anjou, claimed precedence over the Bourbon princes of Condé and Conti.

Marriage and issueEdit

Claude married Antoinette de Bourbon,[4] daughter of François, Count of Vendôme and Marie de Luxembourg, on 9 June 1513; they had 12 children:


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Wellman 2013, p. 236.
  2. ^ Spangler 2009, p. 64.
  3. ^ Carroll 2009, p. 35.
  4. ^ Bell 2004, p. 127.


  • Bell, Susan G. (2004). The Lost Tapestries of the City of Ladies. University of California Press.
  • Carroll, Stuart (2009). Martyrs and Murderers: The Guise Family and the Making of Europe. Oxford University Press.
  • Spangler, Jonathan (2009). The Society of Princes: The Lorraine-Guise and the Conservation of Power and Wealth in Seventeenth-Century France. Ashgate Publishing Limited.
  • Wellman, Kathleen (2013). Queens and Mistresses of Renaissance France. Yale University Press.
  •   This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Guise, House of". Encyclopædia Britannica. 12 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 699–703.
Claude, Duke of Guise
Born: 20 October 1496  Died: 12 April 1550
Preceded by
Count of Guise
Lord of Elbeuf

Count of Aumale
Succeeded by
New title
Duke of Guise
Marquis of Elbeuf
Succeeded by