Francesco III Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua

Francesco III Gonzaga (10 March 1533 – 22 February 1550) was Duke of Mantua and Marquess of Montferrat from 1540 until his death. He was the eldest son of Federico II Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua and his wife Margaret Paleologina.

Francesco III Gonzaga
Duke of Mantua
Duke of Mantua (as Francesco III)
Duke of Montferrat (as Francesco I)
PredecessorFederico II Gonzaga
SuccessorGuglielmo I Gonzaga
Born10 March 1533
Died22 February 1550(1550-02-22) (aged 16)
SpouseCatherine of Austria
(m. 1549–50; his death)
HouseHouse of Gonzaga
FatherFederico II Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua
MotherMargaret Paleologina


On 22 October 1549, he married Catherine of Habsburg, a daughter of Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I. The marriage lasted only four months as Francesco drowned in the Lake Como on 21 February 1550. Widowed Catherine returned home to Innsbruck. Habsburgs claimed that the marriage was not consummated to increase Catherine's chances for a better second marriage.



Preceded by
Federico II
Duke of Mantua
Succeeded by
Marquess of Montferrat
(as Francesco I)

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