Maria1Maria de’ Medici (1540-1557.)

Maria was a member of the very famous Medici family. She was engaged to the Duke of Ferrara but died before the marriage could take place. Known for her beauty and intelligence- it was very sad that she passed away at the young age of 17. 

There are some records that say that Maria was so lovely and closely guarded by her controlling father that when he discovered she had a secret lover, Cosimo I de’Medici stabbed his own daughter in the heart after he caught her with Malatesta de’Malatesti. Cosimo then made up the story that she had died of a spotted fever and had Malatesta thrown in prison. 

The likely, and more widely believed story is that she died of Malaria. 

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