Finally, I have named my car.
I don’t think you’ve been introduced yet, dear galleons. I bought a car about a week and a half ago. She looks like this (this is not an actual picture of her, just one I stole from the internets… I’d take a real picture, but the batteries that were in my camera are, uh, otherwise engaged):
She may be old, but she’s classy (leather seats, baby… mmhmm).
Anyway, I’ve really been struggling coming up with a name for her. Which is weird, since I never have any problems naming electronics…
I toyed with quite a few. Caprica. Tabitha (a Eureka reference). Mahrlena. Penelope.
They all sucked. I couldn’t come up with anything good.
Then, it hit me, like a ton of nerdy, history-coated bricks:
Lucrezia Borgia. Man, I love her. I’ve loved her since I was young.
For a quick rundown (for those who don’t know), Lucrezia was the daughter of Rodrigo (who later became Pope Alexander VI) and sister to Cesare. Now, the Borgia family was known for their almost limitless ambition, which would later lead to their downfall. Much of Lucrezia’s life is shrouded in rumor and scandal. It is known she had three husbands. She had a fair number of children, but the one that really stands out is the child known as “infans Romanus.”
The “infans Romanus” (also known as Giovanni) is the subject of much speculation. Officially, paternity was claimed by a man named Perotto, the messenger of Alexander (her father, the pope). It is assumed that Lucrezia had an affair with Perotto while married to her first husband (also named Giovanni). However, there were many rumors that the child was actually fathered by Cesare or Alexander.
Incest. Good times.
Anyway, Lucrezia divorces Giovanni (after he flees Rome to prevent being killed… an execution that may have been ordered on the sly by Alexander himself). Her father and brother then arrange another advantageous political match up, and Lucrezia becomes the wife of a duke named Alfonso. Rumor has it that Cesare did not like Alfonso because Lucrezia was actually happy with her new husband and stopped paying Cesare as much attention.
This hatred of Alfonso led to Cesare having his servant strangle Alfonso in his sleep. Turns out, this murder was also politically advantageous. And, with Lucrezia back on the market, the men in her life arranged yet another marriage for her. To another duke… named Alfonso.
Lucrezia and Alfonso 2 had a handful of children together, but neither was faithful. Lucrezia had a passionate (primarily sexual) affair with her bisexual brother-in-law, Francesco. But then Francesco got syphilis and ended the affair.
Funnily enough, Cesare had syphilis…
The notorious Lucrezia was the only Borgia to survive the fall of the house after her father’s death. These days, she’s painted as a femme fatale, often wearing a hollow ring that she’d use to poison drinks.
In Ivan Cloulas’ The Borgias, there’s a transcribed speech from Alexander to Lucrezia that really sums up the whole Borgia mindset (and might help you understand why I love Lucrezia so much):
Do people say that I am both your father and your lover? Let the world, that heap of vermin as ridiculous as they are feeble-minded, believe the most absurd tales about the mighty! You must know that for those destined to dominate others, the ordinary rules of life are turned upside down and duty acquires an entirely new meaning. Good and evil are carried off to a higher, different plane…
Remember this. Walk straight ahead. Do only what you like, as long as it is of some use to you. Leave hesitation and scruples to small minds, to plebians and subordinates. One consideration alone is worthy of you- the elevation of the House of Borgia, the elevation of yourself.
Anyway, I’ve seen Lucrezia referred to simply as “The Borgia” in texts before, so I thought it would be a stately, regal name for my car.
Everyone knows that articles are what really make a name pop.