She quickly became known for her talent as a poetess as well as for her . . . asparagus eating.
Her most famous exploit probably regards King Henri III of France. During the mid-1500′s Venice was isolated from Spain, and the Venetians hoped that King Henri’s visit would offer them a chance for friendship with France. When he arrived he was offered every hospitality. He visited Titian and Tintoretto, and saw a galley constructed for his benefit. The laws dictating attire were also relaxed, so women were allowed to wear all their jewels at once, not merely on their bodies but also in their hair. And, at the end of his visit he was asked to select one of Venice’s finest courtesans to visit, and he picked Veronica Franco.
Their time together was a huge success. He went away with a miniature portrait of her in hand, and he promised to publish her book of poems. She, in turn, dedicated the book to his “serene splendor.” We should, for a second, talk about her books.