Ferdinand and Barbara, Married Mad Royals


Fernando VI and Barbara de Braganza and their court. Charles-Joseph Flipart after a sketch by Jacopo Amigoni circa 1750-1758. Museo del Prado/Public domain

Despite ascending to power in a court filled with intrigue, juggling relations with Britain and France, and both likely having mental health conditions, the reign of Ferdinand VI of Spain and his wife Barbara was surprisingly stable.

Holly's Research:

  • Green, Vivian. “The Madness of Kings. Personal Trauma and the Fate of Nations.” Sutton. 1993.
  • Bergamini, John D. “The Spanish Bourbons: The History of a Tenacious Dynasty.” Putnam. 1974.
  • Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica. “War of the Spanish Succession.” Encyclopedia Brittanica. June 17, 2019. https://www.britannica.com/event/War-of-the-Spanish-Succession
  • Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica. “Ferdinand VI, King of Spain.” Encyclopedia Brittanica. Sept. 19, 2018. https://www.britannica.com/biography/Ferdinand-VI
  • Coxe, William. “Memoirs of the Kings of Spain f the House of Bourbon: From the Accession of Philip V. to the Death of Charles III. 1700 to 1788. Drawn from the Original and Unpublished Documents.” Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown. 1815.
  • “Church of Santa Barbara (Salesas Reales Convent).” Madrid Official Tourism. https://www.esmadrid.com/en/tourist-information/iglesia-santa-Barbara?utm_referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com%2F
  • Real Acadamia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando. “History of the Academy.” https://realacademiabellasartessanfernando.com/es/academia/historia
  • Orr, Clarissa Campbell. “Queenship in Europe 1660-1815: The Role of the Consort.” Cambridge University Press. 2004.
  • “The Encyclopaedia Britannica: A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, Literature and General Information, Volume 20.” University Press. 1910. Accessed online: https://books.google.com/books?id=6IPaptbsSGMC&dq
  • Fernán - Núñez, Carlos Gutiérrez de los Ríos, Conde de. “Vida de Carlos III. Tomo II.” Alicante : Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes. 1999. http://www.cervantesvirtual.com/obra/vida-de-carlos-iii-tomo-ii--0/
  • Bos, Joan. “Ferdinand VI of Spain.” Mad Monarchs. Sept. 11, 2011. http://madmonarchs.guusbeltman.nl/madmonarchs/ferdinand6/ferdinand6_bio.htm

Topics in this Podcast: Spanish history, Mental illness, Spain, Philip V, House of Bourbon, 18th century, European history, sad royal childhoods