Was Charles V opposed to commoners learning? If so, why?

I read in the acknowledgement section of this book that "The Bibliothèque Nationale was extremely kind in allowing me to use its marvelous facilities and incomparable collections—although I am sure that Charles V might have been upset if he knew that a commoner would be allowed to use some books and manuscripts from his library."

  • 1
    What leads you believe this? What is the context of this question? Is it something he said or did? – Tom Au May 16 '14 at 19:29
  • 1
    @TomAu: I edited it with the context. – Geremia May 16 '14 at 21:38
  • 1
    Curiously the original question fails to specify King Charles V of France who had a large library for his time or Emperor Charles V or some other Charles V. I think "The Bibliothèque Nationale" implies Charles V of France. The only answer assumed Emperor Charles V. – M.A. Golding Jul 24 '16 at 4:35
  • 3
    I suppose the idea intended by the authors is that Charles V would be upset by the idea that his private books were made public. He would be jealous of his private goods, not (necessarily) opposed to public education. – Luís Henrique Jul 24 '16 at 12:36

From Encyclopedia Brittancia

Charles was the son of Philip I the Handsome, king of Castile, and Joan the Mad, and the grandson of Emperor Maximilian I and Mary of Burgundy, as well as of the “Catholic Kings” Isabella I the Catholic, of Castile, and Ferdinand II the Catholic, of Aragon. After his father’s death in 1506, Charles was raised by his paternal aunt Margaret of Austria, regent of the Netherlands. His spiritual guide was the theologian Adrian of Utrecht (later Pope Adrian VI), a member of the devotio moderna, a religious and educational reform movement promoting literacy among the masses.

So the signs point to no, he did not.

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.