The Duke of Milan

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Historical Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

A fictional account of the life of Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan (1450 -1465).

Table of Contents

Milan 1465

‘At the subtle moment when a man glances backward, Sisyphus returns to his rock, in that slight pivoting, he contemplates that series o... Read Chapter

The Son of the Father

The beginning of the journey lies in the past. ‘We are leaves in the wind,’ said my father. I see him now, stretched out upon his... Read Chapter

Milan - the contract

'I have heard no woman is safe from you?' she asked.  It was not the sort of question I had been expecting, but what man can exp... Read Chapter

The Mistake

‘Beware of the desire to take what belongs to others and of making unjust war, for God will destroy you.’ If Visconti had been mi... Read Chapter

Genoa 1427

By those that know me I am accounted a prudent man and so not given to flights of fancy or prone to reckless adventures, and with this I ... Read Chapter


I offered myself upon the Altar of Death and found not oblivion, but life. In the beginning I was angry at being cheated of my grand gest... Read Chapter

Sforza Unleashed

Visconti liked to say that after Mortara he unleashed me upon an unsuspecting world. In some respects he was right. Lucca may have been t... Read Chapter


‘I am the most loyal and complaisant of wives, and I have dedicated my life to the comfort of my husband and the prosperity of his affa... Read Chapter


The 1431 campaign was the trial of arms between the two men who would be Duke of Milan. Only one of us was destined to survive. The f... Read Chapter

God's Champion

We signed the marriage contract for Bianca on the 23rd day of February 1432. I had the Duke committed to parchment, but that did not stop... Read Chapter

Cosimo Medici

‘You will like him, said Fiammetta as we walked through the streets of Florence, ‘trust me.’ ‘That is hardly a recommendation... Read Chapter

May God preserve You

‘Was that a yawn I saw?’ ‘No father,’ said Ippolita hiding her face behind the back of her hand. ‘You know how much I like ... Read Chapter

North of the Po

What is the nature of a man’s word? Some men believe that when you give it, you are pledging the very essence of who you are, and you b... Read Chapter


It broke his heart. The soldiers gathered around aware that they were witnessing a moment of history, the meeting of the two greatest... Read Chapter


There is a commonality between a prince and a woman, which at first consideration may seem a little strange yet it is true that both desi... Read Chapter

The Proposal

For some people marrying is a relatively simple transaction between two vaguely interested parties who can at least tolerate the other pe... Read Chapter

The Wheel Turns

‘It was more like an army of occupation than a wedding procession,’ Bianca complained afterwards. She did have a point, but I was not... Read Chapter


‘This was not the start to married life that I envisaged,’ said Bianca. We had spent the afternoon standing on the battlements watchi... Read Chapter


‘Have you missed me?’ she asked. ‘Dearest Fiammetta,’ answered Bianca, you know it’s always a pleasure to see you.... Read Chapter

Federico Montefeltro.

While I do not believe a man’s fate is pre-determined it has always been a comfort to me to know that my enemies have always shown me t... Read Chapter

The Dowry

‘I’m innocent!’ screamed Ciarpellio. ‘I believe you,’ I said and I really did, but it made no difference. It had been fasci... Read Chapter

The Duke

Casale was the battle that changed everything. The road to Casale started with the Duke’s decision to attempt to recover Bianca’s mar... Read Chapter

The Ambrossian Republic

The Duke’s death in August 1447 was as if one of the stars in heaven had ceased to shine leaving behind the cold, dark, emptiness of sp... Read Chapter

The Road to Caravaggio

Pavia threw into relief the inherent weakness of our alliance; the city would gladly surrender, but was adamant that it would be to me al... Read Chapter


Caravaggio Father used to say ‘there only two things in this world that can give an old soldier a new pair of legs, one is a nubile... Read Chapter

The Letter

Some chroniclers say that men are propelled by unseen forces that determine their actions. I do not believe this to be so. Great events o... Read Chapter

Dies Irae

‘If you do not surrender, nothing short of an extraordinary interposition by the Almighty shall save you from my hand,’ I was at my e... Read Chapter

Fall of the Republic

By mid 1449 the Sforzeschi and the Braccieschi were tearing Milan apart in factional fighting. Riots, arson, and outright murder were now... Read Chapter

The Duke of Milan

Some call me tyrant, but this is not so. I am Duke of Milan not by right of some Imperial seal set upon parchment, nor by birth or force ... Read Chapter

The Storm

The Storm We allied with the French King, Charles VIII, in February 1452, in return for assistance against Naples; we would receive a... Read Chapter


Alessandro called Lodi a wrestling bout of two halves. The first, against the Venetians, was little more than a warm up. The respecti... Read Chapter

King Francesco I?

For every act there is a consequence. I picked up my pen, this was one letter a ruler had to write himself. ‘What are you doing... Read Chapter

Reflections upon Mortality.

Sforza is given a glimpse of what will happen after his death.
Read Chapter

The Sins of the Father

Father once said, ‘the only constant in life is that things change,’ he was wrong to say this, for as every parent knows there is ano... Read Chapter

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