Tatiana Dokuchic
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Category: History

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Today is Ada Lovelace Day, a celebration of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).  It aims to increase the profile of women in STEM and, in doing so, create new role models who will encourage more girls into STEM careers and support women already working in STEM.

Ada Lovelace is a fascinating woman, credited with being the first computer programmer back in the 1830s!

Renaissance Women: Margaret of Austria


By Tatiana Dokuchic, 2013-09-20

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Margaret of Austria, Mary of Burgundy, Maximilian of Austria, Anne of Brittany, Philip the Handsome, Catherine of Aragon, Louise of Savoy, Anne of France



When last we sawAnne Boleyn,ourelegant & intrepid guidefor these Renaissance ramblings, it was 1513 and she was heading to the court of Margaret of Austria to begin her European education(see Anne Boleyn: The French Connection).Modern-day references to Margaret are often brief andmade in passing to denote her relationships with others. Frequently appearing in thebiographies of others; often tagged as "Aunt of" or"Sister in law of"; Margaret has a fascinating story all of her own.


Born in 1480 to Mary of Burgundy and Maximilian of Austria, Margaret of Austriacertainly had a lot of high-powered family connections (both through blood and through marriage) given that her mother was the Duchess of Burgundy in her own right, her father was the elected Holy Roman Emperorand her parents were the co-sovereigns of the Low Countries.



In 1482, when Margaret was only two years of age, hermother diedas the result ofa riding accident. This tragic turn of events accelerated Margaret'sentryinto the political arena and she was soon betrothedto Charles (the current dauphin of France andsoon-to-beCharles VIII) in a deal to end the conflict between Burgundy and France.



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Chteaud'Amboise


As part of this arrangement, a three-year-old Margaret was sent to the French royal court at Amboiseto be raised as the future queen of France. Her education was supervised by Anne of France, her fianc's sister,who was acting as his regent during his minority.Anne, one of the most powerful women ofher time, was both a ruler and an educator of the aristocracy's children, a model that Margaret herself would later emulate.


Posted in: History | 2 comments

Anne Boleyn: The French Connection


By Tatiana Dokuchic, 2013-09-07

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Anne Boleyn, Margaret of Austria, Claude of France, Margueriteof Navarre



Where would you start if you wanted to blog a bit about the Renaissance? Would it be easier if you limited your scope to the French Renaissance? How long would it take and how far would you get before tying yourself up in so many knots that the only sanemove would be to cut and run?



I recently found myself ponderingthese questions (and so many more)but before I could be overwhelmed into inaction I decided to just pick a point and begin. After all it's the journey that counts and since this is purely a pleasure cruise I thought it best tobegin with one of my favourite historical personages, Anne Boleyn.



Now we know that Anne's daughter, Elizabeth I, prided herself on being "mere English" and it's true that Anne's roots were decidedly upper-crust Anglo-Saxon but her early life experiences connected her to thecore of the French Renaissance. Born a courtier andeducated with royalty, Anne Boleynwas aRenaissance woman through & throughand thereforethe perfect travelling companion forthese Renaissance ramblings.


Posted in: History | 4 comments