History - OnThisDay - 24 March 1577 - Francis, Duke of Pomerania: A storry about the Duke and a witch ...

Francis of Pomerania (von Pommern) was born on 24 March 1577 in
Barth, northern Germany.

Duchy of Pomerania

The Duchy of Pomerania was located on the southern shore of the Baltic Sea.
It contained parts of northern Germany and Poland.


Francis was the son of Duke Bogislaw XIII and his wife Clara of Brunswick-
Lüneburg.  In his youth he received the best eduction of that time.

He belonged to the noble House of Griffins also called the House of Pomerania.
This was founded in the 12th century and the disolution took place in 1660.


Francis indicated at an early age that he was interested in knighthood and
military affairs.

In 1594 he made a trip to Vienna and Hungary. There he took part in the
siege of Esztergom fortress under Archduke Matthias of Austria. Later,
in 1596 he traveled to Italy and afterwards he returned to Pomerania.

In 1602, Francis became bishop of Cammin. His residence was at Köslin.

In 1604, the King of Sweden offered him the command of 3.000 men infantry
and 1.000 cavalry during the Polish-Swedish war. He refused this in the view
of the neutrality of Pomerania.

In 1607, Francis made a new journey. This brought him to Prague, Switzerland,
France, the Spanish border, England, Scotland and the Netherlands.

Love and Marriage

In 1610, Duke Francies married to Sophie of Saxony, a daughter of
Elector Christian I of Saxony. The marriage remained childless.


In 1616, Francis' brother, Philip, died with no heirs. Francis succeeded him as
ruler of Pomerania-Stettin. The Bishopric of Cammin went to his brother

During Duke Francis's time in office, a 80-year-old nun called
Sidonia von Borcke, was tried for witchcraft.
She was accused of having caused the early death of the Dukes Philip II
and George II, and of causing the other sons of Duke Bogislaw XIII to
remain childless. She was found guilty and executed.


Francis, Duke of Pomerania fell ill, three months after Sidonia von Borcke
was executed. He was still healthy in the morning and after lunch he felt ill. A few
days later he died in Stettin.

Source pictures: wikipedia

Royal Books review: The life and times of Elizabeth I, portraits of the Greatness

The book "The Life and times of Elizabeth I, portraits of the Greatness"
took my interest in the public library on my hometown. I had the chance to
acquire this wonderful book and I discovered a true treasure!

Book: "The Life and times of Elizabeth I, portraits of the Greatness"

About the Book

The life and times of Elizabeth I, portraits of the Greatness was published
by The Hamlyn publishing Group Ltd. 

The General Editor was Dr. Enzo Orlandi. The Text was written by
Massimo Rossaro. 

About the life and times of Elizabeth I

The story starts on 17 November 1558, the day that Queen Mary I of England
died.  Later it continues with the succession after King Henry VIII. First his
son Edward became King, later Queen Mary and finally Queen Elizabeth.
However when she became Queen, the country was a ruin.

The English life then was a mixture of medieval crudeness and Renaissance
refinement. Elizabeth's Court was a travelling court. It moved from one
residence to another. She also had a dazzling wardrobe. The appearance of the
Queen was always striking.

Queen Elizabeth I - Source picture: Wikipedia

But she had a big problem: to be a married woman or not. Robert Dudley,
Earl of Leicester was one of her tutors. There bond stayed close until his
death in 1588.

Later the story continued with the imprisonment and plots of Mary Stuart,
Queen of the Scots.

When Elizabeth came to the throne she wanted a religious policy that was
tolerant. But there was a Pope's Bull of Excommunication against her and
her ministers saw in the activity of the Catholics a threat to the State.

In 1572 the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre took place in France. Between
the two countries the relations were strained during the reign of Queen
Elizabeth I. Though Catherine de' Medici proposed three of her sons as a
husband for the English Queen: Charles IX, Henry III and Duke of Alençon
but finally England was her only love.

Queen Elizabeth took interest in the English fleet and in maritime matters.
Elizabeth took her place in the contest to conquer land and riches in
the New World which was until then the exclusive property of Spain and
Portugal. Of course, the story also mentioned Francis Drake.

Francis Drake: Source picture: Wikipedia

On 8 February 1587 the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots took place.

For years the cold war between Spain and England became more worse.
In July 1588 the Armada (130 ships) appeared before Plymouth. This
was led by the Duke of Medina-Sidonia. On 21 June 1588, Drake
and Hawkins opened fire. Later the first Battle of Britain was won by
Queen Elizabeth's sailors and by the wind.

During the later part of the 1580's a new talent was discovered:
William Shakespeare. The "Twelfth Night" was written by Shakespeare
and to be performed in presence of the Queen, probably in 1599.

Shakespeare - Source picture: Wikipedia

Later the story mentioned the Earl of Essex, Leicester's stepson. He was
placed under house arrest and executed for treason.

Queen Elizabeth I - Source picture: Wikipedia

In her final years, Queen Elizabeth had difficulties to adapt her to the new
and changing times. She always refused to appoint a successor.

Elizabeth became 69 years old and she reigned for 44 years. She was
buried at Westminster Abbey.

"The life and times of Elizabeth I, portraits of the Greatness" offers a brief
synopsis about the life and the time of Queen Elizabeth I. It also shows
wonderful pictures. For me it was a nice and pleasant reading.