By: Agnes Mary Frances Robinson (1857-1944)
Margaret of Angoulême, Queen of Navarre , , was the sister of Francis I, King of France. She was highly-educated and was courted by the future Henry VIII of England. However, at the age of seventeen, she was married by royal decree to the untutored dolt, Charles IV of Alençon. After his death she wed Henry II of Navarre by whom she had a daughter and a son, who died in infancy. The author takes us with Margaret on her perilous journey over the Pyrenees to Spain to attempt to free her brother, Francis, held captive by the Holy Roman Emperor. Margaret's support for the first stirrings of the Reformation in France alarmed the Catholic conservatives of the Sorbonne. Her cycle of short stories, the "Heptameron," is still read and enjoyed today.