chapter  6
30 Pages

From Castile to Burgundy: The Evolution of the Queens’ Households during the Sixteenth Century

ByFélix Labrador Arroyo

From the thirteenth to the eighteenth century, royal households gave identity to the dynasties of the European monarchies as well as cohesion to the families of their respective kingdoms. The household constituted one of the founding elements that combined to make the court a political power base from which to organize the kingdom. Each prince established his own household, which included his own form of service: his chapel, and the offices of his household, chamber, stables, guard, and the hunt. Yet, although all desired to be original in order to put a particular stamp on their monarchy, most households formed the same departments and structures that, after a period of steady development, took into their service the political, economic, and social èlites.2