Unknown artist – Attributed to Rodrigo de Villandrando

Portrait of Elisabeth of France, Queen of Spain; c. 1621

Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain

Elisabeth of France (1602 – 1644) was Queen consort of Spain (1621 to 1644) and Portugal (1621 to 1640) as the first wife of King Philip IV of Spain. She was the eldest daughter of King Henry IV of France and his second spouse Marie de’ Medici. As a daughter of the king of France, she was born a Fille de France.


Queens of Spain ISABEL

  • Isabel I of Castile (Ávila, 1451-Valladolid, 1504). Queen Regnant of Castile, her kingdom and her husband’s, of which she was Queen consort, form Spain.
  • Isabel of Portugal (Lisbon, 1503-Toledo, 1539). Infanta of Portugal, daughter of Manuel I, wife of Carlos I of Spain, Holy Roman Emperor.
  • Isabel of Valois (Fontainebleau 1546-Madrid, 1568). Princess of France, daughter of Henri III, third wife of Felipe II.
  • Isabel of Bourbon (Fontainebleau 1602-Madrid,1644). Madame Royale, daughter of Henri IV, first wife of Felipe IV.
  • Isabel Farnese (Parma, 1692-Aranjuez, 1766). Princess of Parma, daughter of Odoardo, Hereditary Prince, second wife of Felipe V.
  • Luisa Isabel d’Orléans (Versailles, 1709-Paris, 1742). Princesse du sang, daughter of Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, wife of Luis I.
  • María Isabel of Portugal (Queluz, 1797-Aranjuez, 1818). Infanta of Portugal, daughter of John VI, second wife of Fernando VII.
  • Isabel II of Spain (Madrid, 1830-Paris, 1904). Queen Regnant of Spain (1833-1868), daughter of Fernando VII.

House of Bourbon Spain // Consorts

Maria Luisa of Savoy ♦ 2 November 1701 – 14 February 1714

Elisabeth Farnese ♦ 24 December 1714 – 14 January 1724

Louise Élisabeth d'Orléans ♦ 15 January 1724 – 31 August 1724

Barbara of Portugal ♦ 9 July 1746 – 27 August 1758

Maria Amalia of Saxony ♦ 10 August 1759 – 27 September 1760

Maria Luisa of Parma ♦ 14 December 1788 - 19 March 1808

Maria Isabel of Portugal ♦ 29 September 1816 – 26 December 1818

Maria Josepha Amalia of Saxony ♦ 20 October 1819 – 18 May 1829

Maria Christina of the Two Sicilies ♦ 11 December 1829 – 29 September 1833

Francis, Duke of Cádiz ♦ 10 October 1846 – 30 September 1868

Infanta Doña Mercedes of Spain ♦ 23 January – 26 June 1878

Archduchess Maria Christina of Austri ♦ 25 November 1885 - 17 May 1902

Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg ♦ 31 May 1906 – 14 April 1931

Princess Sophia of Greece ♦ 22 November 1975 –

Queen Letizia


Rodrigo de Villandrando

1. Portrait of Philip, Prince of Asturias (future King Philip IV of Spain), with the court dwarf Miguel Soplillo; c. 1620

2. Portrait of Elisabeth of France (future Queen consort of Spain as the wife of Philip IV); c. 1620

Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain

These pendant portraits are commemorative of the pledge of Philip as heir to the Portuguese crown on 14 July 1619, in a ceremony held in Tomar, Portugal. Philip and Elisabeth, married in 1615, are portrayed with the lavish Portuguese white-and-gold ceremonial garments they wore when they arrived to Lisbon.

The dwarf Miguel Soplillo (d. 1659) was sent as gift by the Archduchess Isabella Clara Eugenia (sovereign of the Spanish Netherlands and Philip’s aunt) to Madrid in 1614, and remained a favourite of Philip IV for 44 years. "The fact of being objectified as a gift did not prevent dwarfs attendants becoming long-standing and much-loved court subjects.“ (source)

Rodrigo de Villandrando (c. 1588–1622) was a court painter during the reign of Philip III of Spain. His death opened the road to court for the young painter Diego Velázquez, who became Philip IV’s royal painter in 1622.


Fleur de Lys Tiara

This tiara, considered the most important diadem of their collection, called “La Buena” (The Good one) and only worn by the Queens of Spain, was a wedding present from King Alfonso XIII to his bride, Princess Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg. Made in 1906 by Ansorena with more than 500 diamonds set in platinum, it features the Fleur de Lys, the Bourbon’s emblem.

From the beginning, this diadem became one of the favorites of the young Queen, who was married wearing it and chose it for her first photo session as Queen of Spain in 1906.
Her Majesty was photographed and painted with the Fleur de Lys on numerous occasions. Shortly after her wedding the Queen opened the tiara and started wearing it in its current form.
Queen Victoria used the tiara throughout her life, and unlike many of her tiaras and  jewels, she never lent it to her daughters, the Infantas Beatriz and María Cristina.Queen Victoria Eugenia lent the tiara to her daughter-in-law, the wife of the Head of the Family, on a few occasions, one of them for the coronation of Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom in 1953.

In her will, the late Queen Victoria Eugenia left the Fleur de Lys tiara to her son Don Juan, Count of Barcelona and pretender to the Spanish throne. The tiara was left for the exclusive use of the Queens so when King Juan Carlos was proclaimed King in 1975, his mother, the Countess of Barcelona passed the tiara to the new Queen, Sofía of Greece and Denmark.
Queen Sofía has used the Fleur de Lys tiara on the grandest occasions, like State Visits from other Monarchies or the 60th Jubilee of the King of Thailand in 2006, the last time she wore the tiara. Following tradition, the next wearer of the tiara would be the Princess of Asturias after her husband becomes Felipe VI, King of Spain.