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Catherine de' Medici

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Catherine de' Medici (1519–89), daughter of Lorenzo de' Medici, Duke of Urbino; wife of King Henry II of France; and mother of 3 kings of France. After the death of her eldest son, King Francis II (r.1559–60), she acted as regent of France (until 1563) and was adviser to her son, King Charles IX, (r.1560–74) until his death. She helped Charles IX plan the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre against the Protestants in 1572. Her third son, Henry III, ruled from 1574 to 1589.

See also: Saint Bartholomew's Day, Massacre of.

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