Philip the Good
|Philip the Good|
|Philip the Good, wearing the collar of firesteels of the Order of the Golden Fleece he instituted, copy of a Rogier van der Weyden of c.1450|
|Reign||10 September 1419 – 15 June 1467|
|Predecessor||John the Fearless|
|Successor||Charles the Bold|
|Spouse||Michelle of Valois
Bonne of Artois
Isabella of Portugal
|Charles the Bold
David of Burgundy
Anthony, Grand Bastard of Burgundy
|House||House of Valois-Burgundy|
|Father||John the Fearless|
|Mother||Margaret of Bavaria|
|Born||31 July 1396
|Died||15 June 1467 (aged 70)
Philip the Good (French: Philippe le Bon, Dutch: Filips de Goede; 31 July 1396 – 15 June 1467) was Duke of Burgundy as Philip III from 1419 until his death. He was a member of a cadet line of the Valois dynasty (the then Royal family of France). During his reign Burgundy reached the height of its prosperity and prestige and became a leading center of the arts. Philip is known in history for his administrative reforms, patronage of Flemish artists such as Jan van Eyck, of Franco-Flemish composers such as Gilles Binchois, and the capture of Joan of Arc. During his reign he alternated between English and French alliances in an attempt to improve his dynasty's position. As ruler of Flanders, Brabant, Holland, Zeeland, Friesland, Namur and Limburg, he played an important role in the history of the Netherlands.
Family and early life
Born in 1396 in Dijon, Philip was the son of John the Fearless and Margaret of Bavaria-Straubing. His father, the son of the Duke of Burgundy, Philip the Bold, succeeded his father as duke in 1404. On 28 January 1405, Philip was named Count of Charolais in appanage of the duke and probably on the same day, at the age of 8, became engaged to Michele of Valois (1395–1422), daughter of King Charles VI of France and Isabeau of Bavaria. They were married in June 1409.
After Michelle's death, Philip on 30 November 1424 married Bonne of Artois (1393–1425), daughter of Philip of Artois, Count of Eu, and also the widow of his uncle, Philip II, Count of Nevers, in Moulins-les-Engelbert. The latter is sometimes confused with Philip's biological aunt, also named Bonne (sister of John the Fearless, lived 1379–1399), in part due to the Papal dispensation required for the marriage which made no distinction between a marital aunt and a biological aunt.
- Anthony (September 30, 1430, Brussels – February 5, 1432, Brussels), Count of Charolais;
- Joseph (April 24, 1432 – aft. May 6, 1432), Count of Charolais;
- Charles (1433–1477), Count of Charolais and Philip's successor as Duke, called "Charles the Bold" or "Charles the Rash"
Philip also had at least eighteen illegitimate children by various of his 24 documented mistresses, including:
- Corneille of Burgundy (c. 1420 – 1452), captain-general/governor of Luxembourg., killed in the Battle of Bazel (1452);
- Anthony, bastard of Burgundy, (1421 – 1504), lord of La Roche, Sainte-Menehould, Guînes, Lord of Crèvecoeur and Beveren;
- David of Burgundy, (c. 1427 – 1496), bishop of Therouanne and bishop of Utrecht, was a fine amateur artist, and the subject of a biography in 1529;
- Anne of Burgundy (c. 1435 – 1508), governess of Mary of Burgundy, married Adrian of Borssele and later Adolph of Cleves, Lord of Ravenstein;
- Raphaël of Burgundy, also called Raphaël de Marcatellis, (c. 1437 – 1508), abbot of the Saint-Bavo Abbey in Gent and the Saint-Peter Abbey in Oudenburg;
- Baldwin of Burgundy (c. 1446 – 1508), Lord of Fallais, Peer, Boudour, Sint-Annaland, Lovendegem, Zomergem en Fromont;
- Philip of Burgundy (1464–1524), Bishop of Utrecht.
Corneille and Anthony were his favorite bastard sons and successively bore the title of Grand bâtard de Bourgogne (first Corneille and after his death, Anthony).
Early rule and alliance with England
Philip became duke of Burgundy, count of Flanders, Artois and Franche-Comté when his father was assassinated in 1419. Philip accused Charles, the Dauphin of France and Philip's brother-in-law of planning the murder of his father which took place during a meeting between the two at Montereau, and so he continued to prosecute the civil war between the Burgundians and Armagnacs. In 1420 Philip allied himself with Henry V of England under the Treaty of Troyes. In 1423 the alliance was strengthened by the marriage of his sister Anne to John, Duke of Bedford, regent for Henry VI of England.
In 1430 Philip's troops captured Joan of Arc at Compiègne and later handed her over to the English who orchestrated a heresy trial against her, conducted by pro-Burgundian clerics. Despite this action against Joan of Arc, Philip's alliance with England was broken in 1435 when Philip signed the Treaty of Arras (which completely revoked the Treaty of Troyes) and thus recognised Charles VII as king of France. Philip signed for a variety of reasons, one of which may have been a desire to be recognised as the Premier Duke in France. Philip then attacked Calais, but this alliance with Charles was broken in 1439, with Philip supporting the revolt of the French nobles the following year (an event known as the Praguerie) and sheltering the Dauphin Louis.
Philip generally was preoccupied with matters in his own territories and seldom was directly involved in the Hundred Years' War, although he did play a role during a number of periods such as the campaign against Compiègne during which his troops captured Joan of Arc. He incorporated Namur into Burgundian territory in 1429 (March 1, by purchase from John III, Marquis of Namur), Hainault and Holland, Friesland and Zeeland in 1432 (with the defeat of Countess Jacqueline in the last episode of the Hook and Cod wars). He inherited the Duchies of Brabant and Limburg and the Margraviate of Antwerp in 1430 (on the death of his cousin Philip of Saint-Pol); and purchased Luxembourg in 1443 from Elisabeth of Bohemia, Duchess of Luxembourg. Philip also managed in 1456 to ensure his illegitimate son, David, was elected Bishop of Utrecht, and his nephew Louis of Bourbon Prince-Bishop of Liège.
It is not surprising that in 1435, Philip began to style himself "Grand Duke of the West".
In 1463 Philip returned some of his territory to Louis XI. That year he also created an Estates-General based on the French model. The first meeting of the Estates-General was to obtain a loan for a war against France and to ensure support for the succession of his son, Charles I, to his dominions. In 1465 and 1467, Philip crushed two rebellions in Liège.
Philip died in Bruges in 1467.
Court life and patron of the arts
Philip's court can only be described as extravagant. Despite the flourishing bourgeois culture of Burgundy, which the court kept in close touch with, he and the aristocrats who formed most of his inner circle retained a world-view dominated by knightly chivalry. He declined membership in the English Order of the Garter in 1422, which could have been considered an act of treason against the King of France, his feudal overlord. Instead in 1430 he created his own Order of the Golden Fleece, based on the Knights of the Round Table and the myth of Jason.
He had no fixed capital and moved the court between various palaces, the main urban ones being Brussels, Bruges, or Lille. He held grand feasts and other festivities, and the knights of his Order frequently travelled throughout his territory participating in tournaments. In 1454 Philip planned a crusade against the Ottoman Empire, launching it at the Feast of the Pheasant, but this plan never materialized. In a period from 1444 to 1446 he is estimated to have spent a sum equivalent to 2% of Burgundy's main tax income in the recette génerale, with a single Italian supplier of silk and cloth of gold, Giovanni di Arrigo Arnolfini.
His court was regarded as the most splendid in Europe, and became the accepted leader of taste and fashion, which probably helped the Burgundian economy considerably, as Burgundian (usually Netherlandish) luxury products became sought by the elites of other parts of Europe. During his reign, for example, the richest English commissioners of illuminated manuscripts moved away from English and Parisian products to those of the Netherlands, as did other foreign buyers. Philip himself is estimated to have added six hundred manuscripts to the ducal collection, making him by a considerable margin the most important patron of the period. Jean Miélot was one of his secretaries, translating into French such works as Giovanni Bocaccio's Genealogia Deorum Gentilium.
Philip was also a considerable patron of other arts, commissioning many tapestries (which he tended to prefer over paintings), pieces from goldsmiths, jewellery, and other works of art. It was during his reign that the Burgundian chapel became the musical center of Europe, with the activity of the Burgundian School of composers and singers. Gilles Binchois, Robert Morton, and later Guillaume Dufay, the most famous composer of the 15th century, were all part of Philip's court chapel.
In 1428 Jan van Eyck traveled to Portugal to paint a portrait of King John I's daughter Infanta Isabella for Philip in advance of their marriage. With help from more experienced Portuguese shipbuilders Philip established a shipyard in Bruges. Rogier van der Weyden painted his portrait twice on panel, of which only copies survive, wearing the collar of the Order of the Golden Fleece. The only original van der Weyden of Philip to survive is a superb miniature from a manuscript (above left). The painter Hugo van der Goes, of the Early Netherlandish school, is credited with creating paintings for the church where Philip's funeral was held.
- Duchy of Burgundy : 1st Grand Master and Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece
- Kingdom of France - Duchy of Orléans : Knight of the Order of the Porcupine
|Ancestors of Philip the Good|
- Willem Pieter Blockmans and Walter Prevenier, The Promised Lands: The Low Countries under Burgundian Rule, 1369-1530, (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1999), 73.
- Willem Pieter Blockmans and Walter Prevenier, The Promised Lands: The Low Countries under Burgundian Rule, 1369-1530, 73.
- Philippe le Bon (in French)
- Richard Vaughan, Philip the Good: The Apogee of Burgundy, 196.
- Richard Vaughan, Philip the Good: The Apogee of Burgundy, Vol.3, (Boydell Press, 2002), 227.
- Ruth Putnam, Charles the Bold, last Duke of Burgundy, 1433-1477, (G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1908), 69-71.
- Richard Vaughan, Philip the Good: The Apogee of Burgundy, 1.
- National Gallery Catalogues: The Fifteenth Century Netherlandish Paintings by Lorne Campbell, 1998, ISBN 1-85709-171-X
- T Kren & S McKendrick (eds), Illuminating the Renaissance: The Triumph of Flemish Manuscript Painting in Europe, Getty Museum / Royal Academy of Arts, 2003, p. 68, ISBN 1-903973-28-7
- Weir, pp. 272–275.
- Haag et al., pp. 347–349.
|Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article Burgundy.|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Philip III Duke of Burgundy.|
- Brief Profile - Contains a short biography of Philip, from "The Best of Dijon".
- EHistory page - Short sketch of the Duke's life, from E-History.com.
- Joan of Arc's First Letter to Philip - Mention of a letter dictated by Joan of Arc to Duke Philip in June 1429, translated by Allen Williamson.
- Joan of Arc's Second Letter to Philip - Translation by Allen Williamson of a letter dictated by Joan of Arc to Duke Philip on 17 July 1429.
- Philip III - Article from the Web Gallery of Art.
- Philip the Good in the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica at 1911encyclopedia.org
- Burgundy in the 1913 Catholic Encyclopedia at NewAdvent.org
Philip the Good
Cadet branch of the House of ValoisBorn: 31 July 1396 Died: 15 June 1467
John the Fearless
|Duke of Burgundy
Count of Artois and Flanders
Count Palatine of Burgundy
10 September 1419 – 15 July 1467
Charles the Bold
|Count of Charolais
28 January 1405 – November 1433
|Margrave of Namur
1 March 1429 – 15 July 1467
|Duke of Brabant, Limburg and Lothier
14 August 1430 – 15 July 1467
|Count of Hainaut, Holland and Zeeland
April 1432 – 15 July 1467
|Duke of Luxemburg
1443 – 15 July 1467