“He had nonetheless ceased to reign”

The second part of General Belliard’s account of the events following his arrival in Naples in April 1815. Following Murat’s failed campaign against Austria, both the Austrians and English refuse to have any further dealings with him, and will negotiate terms only with his wife, Queen Caroline. Murat’s reign comes to an abrupt end; he …

Continue reading “He had nonetheless ceased to reign”

“Everything captures the imagination”

Two letters from Caroline Murat, newly-crowned Queen of Naples; the first to her uncle, Cardinal Fesch; the second, to her sister-in-law/friend/rival Hortense de Beauharnais, Queen of Holland. Caroline has only recently arrived in Naples, and is not quite adjusted to her new home yet; her accommodations are dreadful, and she already feels forgotten by her …

Continue reading “Everything captures the imagination”

“Napoleon… had prepared the future defection”

Continuing with Murat-related extracts from the memoirs of Baron de Dedem, Dutch ambassador to the court of Naples. Dedem discusses Murat's 1810 expedition to conquer Sicily--the general perception of the populace (and Napoleon) that it would not succeed, and Murat's reaction to its ensuing failure (which Murat would blame at least partially on Napoleon). Source: Un …

Continue reading “Napoleon… had prepared the future defection”

“The people perceived… the sad exchange they had made”

In the last excerpt I posted from the memoirs of Dedem--who was no admirer of Murat--we see Dedem praise Murat for ruling in the interests of his subjects, for reforming and modernizing the Neapolitan administrative, financial, and judicial systems, and for instituting various public works projects. I've found some more excerpts that echo Dedem's sentiments …

Continue reading “The people perceived… the sad exchange they had made”

“This latest separation seems more unbearable…”

Apologies for the infrequent updates lately; I've been working on a side project involving Caroline Murat's 1810 letters to her husband, which may or may not turn into something bigger down the line. So here is one of those letters, written in the middle of Caroline's very long absence from Naples that lasted roughly nine …

Continue reading “This latest separation seems more unbearable…”