Federico I Gonzaga, Marquess of Mantua

Federico I Gonzaga (June 25, 1441 July 14, 1484) was marquess of Mantua from 1478 to 1484, as well as a condottiero.

Federico I Gonzaga
Portrait of Federico I Gonzaga at the Uffizi in Florence
Born25 June 1441
Died14 July 1484(1484-07-14) (aged 43)
Noble familyHouse of Gonzaga
Spouse(s)Margaret of Bavaria
FatherLudovico III Gonzaga
MotherBarbara of Brandenburg


Federico was born in Mantua in 1441, son of Ludovico III and Barbara of Brandenburg. He was a good friend of the court painter Andrea Mantegna and received an education from Mantegna's mother as well as from Vittorino da Feltre (d. 1446) and above all from Iacopo da San Cassiano (from 1446 to 1449) and Ognibene da Lonigo (from 1449).

He fought for the Sforza of Milan until 1470 and succeeded to the marquisate on June 14, 1478. He was, however, forced to split much of the Mantuan possessions with his brothers.

Federico continued to fight as a condottiero, and during his frequent absences Mantua was administered by Eusebio Malatesta, while the local army was under his brother-in-law, Francesco Secco d'Aragona. Federico took part in numerous actions in defence of the Duchy of Milan, in particular against the aggressive Republic of Venice. During one of these wars Francesco Secco occupied Asola and other Venetian territories. Later, after the peace, Ludovico Sforza of Milan asked for the return of Asola to Milan, to which Frederick had to acquiesce.

He died in Mantua at the age of 43, and was buried in the church of Sant'Andrea.


In 1463 he married Margaret of Bavaria, daughter of Albert III, Duke of Bavaria and Anna, Duchess of Brunswick-Grubenhagen; and sister of John IV, Duke of Bavaria. They had the following issue:


See also


  • Coniglio, Giuseppe (1967). I Gonzaga. Varese: Dall'Oglio.

Federico I Gonzaga, Marquess of Mantua
Born: 25 June 1441 Died: 14 July 1484
Preceded by
Ludovico III
Marquess of Mantua
Succeeded by
Francesco II
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