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Ferdinand I
Ferdinand I being crowned by the infant Jesus in San Benito el Real Valladolid, by Juan Rodríguez de Toledo (c.1410–15), now in the Museo del Prado, Madrid.
Preceded by Martin the Humane
Succeeded by Alfonso the Magnanimous
Personal details
Born (1380-11-27)November 27, 1380
Medina del Campo
Died 2 April 1416(1416-04-02) (aged 35)
Spouse(s) Eleanor of Alburquerque
Religion Roman Catholicism

Ferdinand I (Spanish: Fernando I; 27 November 1380 – 2 April 1416 in Igualada, Catalonia) called of Antequera and also the Just or the Honest) was king of Aragon, Valencia, Majorca, Sardinia and (nominal) Corsica and king of Sicily, duke (nominal) of Athens and Neopatria, and count of Barcelona, Roussillon and Cerdanya (1412–1416). He was also regent of Castile (1406–1416).


Born at Medina del Campo, he was the younger son of king John I of Castile and Eleanor of Aragon.

In 1406, upon the death of his elder brother, king Henry III of Castile, Ferdinand declined the Castilian crown and instead, with Henry's widow Catherine of Lancaster, became coregent during the minority of his nephew John II of Castile. In this capacity he distinguished himself by his prudent administration of domestic affairs.

In a war with the Muslim kingdom of Granada, he conquered the town of Antequera (1410), whence his surname.

After Ferdinand's maternal uncle, the king Martin I of Aragon (Martin II of Sicily), died without surviving legitimate issue, Ferdinand was chosen king of Aragon in 1412 to succeed him in the Compromise of Caspe. The other candidate, count James II of Urgell (see counts of Urgell), revolted and Ferdinand dissolved the county of Urgell in 1413.

Ferdinand created the title of prince of Girona for the heir of the Crown of Aragon in 19 February 1416.

The most notable accomplishment of his brief reign was his agreement in 1416 to depose the antipope Benedict XIII, thereby helping to end the Western Schism, which had divided the Western Church for nearly 40 years.

He is buried in the Aragonese royal pantheon of the monastery of Poblet, in a magnificent tomb ordered by his son Alfonso to Pere Oller in 1417.

The Italian humanist Lorenzo Valla wrote an official biography of Ferdinand (Historiarum Ferdinandi regis Aragonum libri sex).

Family and children

In 1393 Ferdinand married Eleanor of Alburquerque (1374–1435). They had seven children:

  • Alfonso V of Aragon (1396–1458), king of Aragon, Sicily and Naples
  • Maria of Aragon, (1396–1445), queen of Castile, first wife of John II of Castile
  • John II of Aragon (1398–1479)
  • Henry of Aragon (c. 1400-1445), duke of Villena, count of Alburquerque and Empuries, lord of Sogorb, etc. and grand master of the military Order of Santiago
  • Eleanor of Aragon, (1402–1445), queen of Portugal, who married Edward I of Portugal
  • Peter of Aragon (1406–1438), count of Alburquerque and duke of Noto
  • Sancho of Aragon (1410–1416), grand master of the Orders of Calatrava and Alcántara

Appearance and Character

"He was tall, a little more than average, and thin and ruddy, and his cheeks had a few freckles... very patient to all who wanted to talk to him, even if their speeches were ordinary or not well-reasoned..." From Cronica de Juan II by Alvar Garcia de Santa Maria.


See also

  • Crown of Aragon

Further reading

External links

Ferdinand I of Aragon
House of Trastámara
Born: 27 November 1380 Died: 2 April 1416
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Martin the Humane
King of Aragon, Valencia, Majorca,
Sicily, Sardinia and Corsica;
Count of Barcelona, Roussillon and Cerdagne

Succeeded by
Alfonso the Magnanimous

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