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Mary
Queen of Sicily; Duchess of Athens
Reign 1377 – 25 May 1401
Predecessor Frederick III
Successor Martin I
Spouse Martin of Aragon
House Trinacria
Father Frederick III of Sicily
Mother Constance of Aragon
Born 2 July 1363
Died 25 May 1401

Mary of Sicily (2 July 1363 – 25 May 1401) was Queen of Sicily and Duchess of Athens from 1377 until her death.

Born in Catania, she was the daughter and heir of Frederick III "The Simple" by his first wife Constança of Aragon.

As she was very young at the time of her father's death in 1377, her government was effectively taken over by four baronial families who styled themselves "vicars."

The regent named by Mary's father, Artale Alagona, was initially forced to form a government with other three Vicars, including Francesco II Ventimiglia, count of Manfredi III Chiaramonte, count of Modica, and Guglielmo Peralta, count of Caltabellotta, with a parity of exponents of the "Italian" and "Aragonese" parties. However, the four men ruled in their separate baronal lands alone. In 1379 she was kidnapped by count Guglielmo Raimondo Moncada to prevent her marriage with Giangaleazzo Visconti, Duke of Milan, and imprisoned for two years at Licata. Moncada's move had been approved by King Peter IV of Aragon. In 1382 Mary was rescued by an Aragonese fleet; she was taken first to Sardinia, then, in 1384, to Aragon, where she was married to Martin "The Younger", the grandson of Peter IV (1389).

In 1392 Mary and the two Martins returned with a military force and successfully defeated the opposing barons, ruling jointly until Mary's death in 1401. At that time, Martin repudiated the Treaty of 1372 and ruled Sicily alone. She also survived their only son, Pietro (1398 – 1400). The kingdom remained without a crown prince and it caused a succession crisis for Martin, who ruled by right of his wife. According to the last will of Frederick III, he named his illegitimate son, William of Aragon, Count of Malta as heir presumptive in this case of the extinction of his daughter's line and although William died in c. 1380, he had a daughter, Joan of Aragon, wife of a Sicilain noble man, Pietro di Gioeni, but she cannot have contested the claim of her aunt's husband and Martin's claim was confirmed and he continued to rule until his death.

Mary of Sicily died at Lentini in 1401.

References

  • Lo Forte Scirpo, Maria Rita (2003). C'era una volta una regina...: due donne per un regno: Maria d'Aragona e Bianca di Navarra. Naples: Liguori. ISBN 882 073 527 X.  

External links

Preceded by
Frederick III
Queen of Sicily
1377 – 1401
Succeeded by
Martin I
Duchess of Athens
1377 – 1401
Succeeded by
Nerio I
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