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Henry of Navarre was the King of France from 1589-1610. In 1598, Henry, a Catholic who had converted from Calvinism, signed into law the Edict of Nantes, which guaranteed religious freedoms for Protestant Calvinists (aka Huguenots). By allowing for amnesty and the restoration of their civil rights, the minority religions in Catholic-dominated France were appeased and effectively ended the civil wars which had plagued the nation during the late 1500s. A popular ruler, Henry IV--fondly referred to as Henry the Great--was assassinated by a Catholic fanatic in 1610.
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