Giovanni della Rovere

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Giovanni della Rovere (1457 – November 1501) was an Italian condottiero and member of the Della Rovere family. He was a nephew of Pope Sixtus IV, and the brother of Giuliano della Rovere (1443–1513), elected to the papal throne as Pope Julius II in 1503.


Giovanni della Rovere was born at Savona. In 1474, thanks to his uncle, Pope Sixtus IV, he became lord of Senigallia and Mondavio. He was also Prefect of Rome and Duke of Sora and Arce.

He married Giovanna da Montefeltro, daughter of Federico III da Montefeltro, and some of their descendants adopted the surname Montefeltro della Rovere. Their children included Francesco Maria I della Rovere, the first Duke of Urbino, who married Eleonora Gonzaga.

After Charles VIII of France had abandoned the Kingdom of Naples and the Aragonese had been restored there, a conjure was set up against the latter at Isola di Sora, in Giovanni's territories. However, the plot was thwarted, although after it the Duchy of Sora followed a more anti-Spanish and pro-Papal policy, and Giovanni led some pro-French expeditions in Campania and Abruzzo from 1494 to 1501. In 1495 he conquered Ceprano, Montecassino and the Terra Sancti Benedicti. In 1496 he defended the duchy against Prospero Colonna and Frederick IV of Naples, losing some territories, although most of them were later returned him by Pope Alexander VI.

He died at Rome in 1501.

See also[edit]

Preceded by
Leonardo della Rovere
Duke of Sora
Succeeded by
Francesco Maria I della Rovere