The Year of Isabella I of Castile – The attempted alliance with Pedro Girón




Isabella prays as portrayed in Isabel
Isabella prays as portrayed in Isabel (2011) (Screenshot/Fair Use)

During her youth, several suitors had been considered for the future Queen Isabella I of Castile.

In 1466, one of the rebels suggested a marriage with Isabella as the best way to get his family’s loyalty back. In this plan, Isabella was to marry Pedro Girón Acuña Pacheco, who was also 18 years her senior. Her half-brother, King Henry IV, agreed to the match, but Isabella was horrified as she considered this match to be beneath her dignity.

Pedro’s brother, Juan Pacheco, was prepared to offer 3,000 lancers and a loan of 70,000 doblas. King Henry told Pedro to “come as fast as possible.”1

Pedro Giron being examined by the surgeon as portrayed in Isabel (2011) (Screenshot/Fair Use)

Isabella sank to her knees and began to pray, begging God to free her from the match. She had not been so vehemently opposed to the match with the King of Portugal as this was, at least, a dignified match. As Pedro rode towards the court, he fell ill and died ten days later on 2 May 1466, much to Isabella’s relief. Queen Joan had not openly opposed her husband’s decision, but she had been against the match.2

King Henry was crestfallen.

  1. Isabella of Castile by Giles Tremlett p.37
  2. A Rainha Adúltera by Marsilio Cassotti p.302






About Moniek Bloks 2745 Articles
My name is Moniek and I am from the Netherlands. I began this website in 2013 because I wanted to share these women's amazing stories.

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