Wikipedia:Today's featured article/December 31, 2009

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The Battle of Pavia

The Italian War of 1521–1526 was a part of the Italian Wars. The war pitted Francis I of France and the Republic of Venice against the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, Henry VIII of England, and the Papal States. The conflict arose from animosity over the election of Charles as Emperor in 1519–1520 and from Pope Leo X's need to ally with Charles against Martin Luther. The war broke out across western Europe late in 1521 when the French invaded Navarre and the Low Countries. Imperial forces overcame the invasion and attacked northern France, where they were stopped in turn. The Pope, the Emperor, and Henry VIII then signed a formal alliance against France, and hostilities began on the Italian peninsula. At the Battle of Bicocca, Imperial and Papal forces defeated the French, driving them from Lombardy. Following the battle, fighting again spilled onto French soil, while Venice made a separate peace. The English invaded France in 1523. A French attempt to regain Lombardy in 1524 failed and provided Bourbon with an opportunity to invade Provence at the head of a Spanish army. Francis himself led a second attack on Milan in 1525. (more...)

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