Vannozza dei Cattanei

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Vannozza dei Cattanei
Vannozza Cattanei.jpg
Born (1442-07-13)13 July 1442
Died 24 November 1518(1518-11-24) (aged 76)
Partner(s) Pope Julius II
Pope Alexander VI
Children Giovanni Borgia
Cesare Borgia
Lucrezia Borgia
Gioffre Borgia
Ottaviano della Croce

Vannozza dei Cattanei (13 July 1442 – 24 November 1518) Giovanna dei Cattanei, nicknamed "Vannozza"[1] was an Italian noblewoman, who was one of the many mistresses of Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia, future Pope Alexander VI. Among them, she was the one whose relationship with him lasted the longest.

Born in 1442 in Mantua to noble parents, Vannozza moved to Rome where she was landlady of several inns (Osterie), at first in the Borgo, then in Campo de' Fiori. Before becoming Alexander's mistress, she had an alleged relationship with Cardinal Giuliano della Rovere, the future Pope Julius II.

The connection with Alexander VI began in 1470, and she bore him four children whom he openly acknowledged as his own:

Before his elevation to the papacy, Alexander VI's passion for Vannozza somewhat diminished, and she subsequently led a very retired life. However, Alexander VI's love for his children by Vannozza remained as strong as ever; it proved, indeed, the determining factor of his whole career. He lavished vast sums on them and lauded them with every honour.

Vannozza had four husbands. First she married Domenico d'Arignano. Her second husband was Antonio da Brescia. In 1480 she married Giorgio della Croce. She had a son named Ottaviano with him. When she became a widow she finally married Carlo Canale.

In fiction[edit]

In Showtime's 2011 series The Borgias, she is played by Joanne Whalley. In Borgia, the French/German production of the same year created by Tom Fontana, she is played by Assumpta Serna. In The Conclave, the Canadian/German production of the 2006 year directed by Christoph Schrewe and written by Paul Donovan, she is played by Nora Tschirner.


  1. ^ Gregorovius, Ferdinand (1904). Lucrezia Borgia. New York: Benjamin Blom. p. 11. Retrieved August 1, 2014. 
  2. ^ I. Cloulas, The Borgias, p. 52


  • R. Gervaso Borgiowie, Katowice 2007
  • Cloulas, Ivan. The Borgias. 
  • Spinosa, Antonio (1999). La saga dei Borgia. Mondadori. 
  • Los Borgia, Juan Antonio Cebrián, Temas de Hoy, 2006. ISBN 84-8460-596-5