Gian Gastone de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany

last Medici Grand Duke of Tuscany (1671-1737)
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Gian Gastone de' Medici (24 May 1671 – 9 July 1737) was the last Medici Grand Duke of Tuscany. He was the second son of Cosimo III de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany and Marguerite Louise d'Orléans. His sister, Anna Maria Luisa de' Medici, the Electress Palatine, married him to Anna Maria Franziska of Saxe-Lauenburg in 1697. The two remained childless and it was common knowledge that Gian Gastone was homosexual. Gian Gastone succeeded his father as Grand Duke in 1723.

Gian Gastone
A peri-wigged man is resplendent in gold, ermine-fringed coronation robes. The man holds the royal sceptre of Tuscany in his right hand; at the same time clenching the royal crown. The cross of the order of Saint Stephen Pope and Martyr adorns his neck. The Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore lies crumbling against a dark sky outside the window.
Grand Duke of Tuscany
Reign31 October 1723 – 9 July 1737
PredecessorCosimo III de' Medici
SuccessorFrancis Stephen of Lorraine
Born24 May 1671
Pitti Palace, Florence, Tuscany
Died9 July 1737(1737-07-09) (aged 66)
Pitti Palace, Florence, Tuscany
Basilica of San Lorenzo
ConsortAnna Maria Franziska of Saxe-Lauenburg
Full name
Giovanni Battista Gastone de' Medici
HouseHouse of Medici
FatherGrand Duke Cosimo III de' Medici
MotherMarguerite Louise d'Orléans
ReligionRoman Catholicism

In his reign he reversed all his father's laws and stopped taxes for poorer people, repealed (got rid of) the anti-Jewish laws and stopped public executions. His father, Cosimo III, wanted the his sister to succeed him but Spain, Great Britain, Austria and the Dutch Republic disregarded and made Charles III of Spain his heir. Charles changed his claim to Francis III of Lorraine. Francis then became the Grand Duke on 9 July 1737 ending almost 300 years of Medici rule over Florence.

Titles and styles

  • 24 May 1671 - 30 October 1713: His Highness Prince Gian Gastone
  • 30 October 1713 - 31 October 1723: His Royal Highness The Grand Prince [of Tuscany]
  • 31 October 1723 - 9 July 1737: His Royal Highness The Most Serene Grand Duke [of Tuscany]