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Biography of Henry IV


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Henry IV (of France). Born in 1553. As son of Anthony of Navarre, a descendant of Louis IX. Was founder of the Bourbon Dynasty, succeeding Henry III in 1589. His marriage with Marguerite de Valois in 1572 was the occasion of the Bartholomew massacres. In 1576 he quitted the court and became leader of the Huguenots and opponent of the League, being the rival of the Guises for the succession. He defeated them at Arques and Ivry, but was unable to conquer Paris without becoming a Roman Catholic, which he did in 1593. He concluded peace with Philip II at Vervins, and issued the Edict of Nantes. The rest of his reign was occupied by domestic reforms. He was assassinated by Ravaillac, 1610.