Ippolito de' Medici

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Ippolito de' Medici
Titian - Portrait of Ippolito dei Medici - WGA22945.jpg
Noble family Medici
Father Giuliano de' Medici
Mother Pacifica Brandano
Born 1511
Florence, Republic of Florence
Died 10 August 1535 (aged 24)
Itri, Kingdom of Naples

Ippolito de' Medici (1511 – August 10, 1535) was the illegitimate only son of Giuliano di Lorenzo de' Medici.

Ippolito was born in Urbino. His father died when he was only five (1516), and he was subsequently raised by his uncle Pope Leo X and his cousin Giulio.

When Giulio de' Medici was elected pope as Clement VII, Ippolito ruled Florence on his behalf. After the siege of Florence (1529–1530), however, Clement favored his other illegitimate nephew Alessandro, and made Ippolito first archbishop of Avignon and then cardinal instead (1529), sending him as Papal legate to Hungary, where he evinced a talent for soldiering.

He was a friend to, and possibly had a liaison with, Giulia Gonzaga, the Countess of Fondi. He loved Catherine de' Medici but they never married. Alessandro de' Medici caught him and Catherine de' Medici in a private embrace. However, when he was sent away as a Cardinal, they weren't allowed to see each other any longer. Some theories suggest that is the reason Clement made him Cardinal: to keep the two lovers separated.

In 1535, he acted as Florentine ambassador to the emperor Charles V. Ippolito died from malaria in Itri, in southern Lazio, although there were rumors that he had been poisoned by Alexander, whose abuses he was intending to denounce.