Borgia

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Borgia

(bōr`jä), Span. Borja (bôr`hä), Spanish-Italian noble family, originally from Aragón. When Alfonso de Borja, cardinal-archbishop of Valencia, was pope as Calixtus III (1455–58), several relatives followed him to Rome. His nephew Rodrigo became pope as Alexander VIAlexander VI,
1431?–1503, pope (1492–1503), a Spaniard (b. Játiva) named Rodrigo de Borja or, in Italian, Rodrigo Borgia; successor of Innocent VIII. He took Borja as his surname from his mother's brother Alfonso, who was Pope Calixtus III.
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, and Rodrigo's illegitimate children were Cesare and Lucrezia Borgia; the later reputations of these Borgias made the family name a synonym for avarice and treachery. To the Spanish branch of the family belonged St. Francis BorgiaFrancis Borgia, Saint
, 1510–72, Spanish Roman Catholic reformer, third general of the Jesuits (see Jesus, Society of). He was a member of the famous Borgia family, a great-grandson of Pope Alexander VI, and cousin to Holy Roman Emperor Charles V.
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 and Francisco Borja (1581–1658), a Spanish general and viceroy of Peru. The direct line of the family, whose senior members bore the title duke of Gandia, died out in the 18th cent.

Bibliography

See studies by E. R. Chamberlin (1974) and C. Hibbert (2008).

Borgia

 

(Italian form; Spanish form, Borja), an aristocratic family of Spanish descent (from Aragón), which played a significant role in 15th- and early 16th-century Italian history. The rise of the family began with Alfonso (1378–1458), who became pope under the name of Calistus III (1455–58). His nephew Rodrigo (Pope Alexander VI; 1492–1503) and Rodrigo’s son Cesare (about 1475–1507) attempted, stopping at nothing, to create a big state in central Italy, with Cesare holding absolute power. To this end they arranged marriages for Alexander VI’s daughter Lucrezia (1480–1519) three times for political aims. In 1499, Cesare became the ruler of Romagna. Cesare served as a prototype of the ruler in Machiavelli’s work. After the death of Alexander VI, Cesare’s great plans began to fail, and the Borgia family disappeared from the historical scene.

REFERENCES

Portigliotti, G. I. Borgia. Milan, 1921.
Pepe, G. La politico dei Borgia. Naples, 1946.
Lucas-Dybreton, J. Les Borgia. Paris, 1952.
Brion, M. Le pape et le prince: Les Borgia. Paris, 1953.

Borgia

1. Cesare , son of Rodrigo Borgia (Pope Alexander VI). 1475--1507, Italian cardinal, politician, and military leader; model for Machiavelli's The Prince
2. his sister, Lucrezia , daughter of Rodrigo Borgia. 1480--1519, Italian noblewoman. After her third marriage (1501), to the Duke of Ferrara, she became a patron of the arts and science
3. Rodrigo . See Alexander VI