Philip IV King Of SPAIN

Male 1605 - 1665  (60 years)


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  • Name Philip IV King Of SPAIN  [1
    Born 08 Apr 1605  [1
    Gender Male 
    Died 17 Sep 1665  [1
    Notes 
    • Philip IV (Felipe IV), (April 8, 1605 ? September 17, 1665) was King of Spain from 1621 to 1665 and also King of Portugal until 1640. The eldest son of Philip III and his wife Margarita of Austria, Philip IV was born at Valladolid. He was known as the Planet King, after the Sun, the fourth planet in the astronomy of the time.

      His reign, after a few years of inconclusive successes, was characterized by political and military decay and adversity. He has been held responsible for the decline of Spain, which was mostly due, however, to organic causes largely beyond the control of any one ruler. Philip certainly possessed more energy, both mental and physical, than his diffident father. His handwritten translation of Francesco Guicciardini's texts on political history still exists, and he was a fine horseman and keen hunter.

      His artistic taste is shown by his patronage of his court painter Diego Vel·zquez; his love of letters by his favoring Lope de Vega, Pedro CalderÛn de la Barca, and other immortal dramatists. He is credited, on fairly probable testimony, with a share in the composition of several comedies. He also commenced the building of the Buen Retiro palace in Madrid, parts of which still remain near the Prado.

      His good intentions were no avail to governance, however. Feeling himself not yet qualified to rule when he ascended to the throne at age 16, he allowed himself to be guided by the most capable men he could find. His favourite, Olivares, was a far more honest and capable man than his predecesssor the Duke of Lerma, and better fitted for the office of chief minister than any Spaniard of the time, perhaps. Philip, however, lacked the confidence to free himself from Olivares' influence once he did come of age. With Olivares' encouragement, he rather busied himself with frivolous amusements. By 1643, when disasters falling on all sides led to the dismissal of the all-powerful minister, Philip had largely lost the power to devote himself to hard work. After a brief struggle with the task of directing the administration of the most extensive and worst-organized multi-national state in Europe, he sank back into indolence and let other favourites govern.

      His political opinions were those he had inherited from his father and grandfather. He thought it his duty to support the House of Habsburg and the cause of the Roman Catholic Church against the Protestants, to assert his sovereignty over the Dutch, and to extend the dominions of his family. The utter exhaustion of his people in the course of perpetual war, against the Netherlands, France and Great Britain, was seen by him with sympathy but he considered it an unavoidable misfortune, since he could not have been expected to renounce his legitimate rights, or to desert what he viewed as the cause of God, the Church and the House of Hapsburg.

      He was idealised by his contemporaries as the model of Baroque kingship. Outwardly he maintained a bearing of rigid solemnity, and was seen to laugh only three times in the course of his entire public life. But, in private, his court was grossly corrupt. Victorian historians prudishly attributed the early death of his eldest son, Baltasar Carlos, to debauchery, encouraged by the gentlemen entrusted by the king with his education. This shocked the king, but its effect soon wore off. Philip IV died broken-hearted in 1665, expressing the pious hope that his surviving son, Carlos, would be more fortunate than himself. On his death, a catafalque was built in Rome to commemorate his life.
    Person ID I53945  Main Tree
    Last Modified 20 Oct 2019 

    Father Philip III Of SPAIN,   b. 14 Apr 1578, Madrid, Spain Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 31 Mar 1621, Madrid, Spain Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 42 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Mother Margarita Of AUSTRIA 
    Relationship Birth 
    Married 1599  [1
    Family ID F17610  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Elizabeth Queen Of SPAIN,   b. 22 Nov 1602,   d. 06 Oct 1644  (Age 41 years) 
    Married 1615  [1
    Family ID F17508  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Sources 
    1. [S03581] Wikipedia Encyclopedia.