Blogging the Reformers: Queen Joanna

Joanna was born to King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain in 1479. Her parents were Catholics and persecuted the Christians in their kingdom. Her parents married her to Phillip, Archduke of Burgundy. Around this point in her life she began to move toward the Christian religion that her parents persecuted. She refused to participate in the Roman Catholic services. In 1500 she had a son, who would later be Emperor Charles V. He would be one of the great persecutors of the Christians. In 1504 her mother Isabella died, leaving Joanna as the next heir to the throne. But since she was a Christian, her husband and father conspired to keep her from taking the throne by claiming that she was insane. She was kept in a cruel prison until her death in 1555, at the age of 76. As she was dying she refused the Roman rites, and her last words were, “Jesus Christ crucified, be with me.”1

She was buried at Granda, Spain. We visited that castle on our trip to Europe this spring. Here are a few pictures.

1 J. H. Merle D'Aubigne, History of the Reformation in Europe in the Time of Calvin(Harrisonburg, VA: Sprinkle Publications, 2000) volume 4, book XIV, p. 139


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