“Perhaps you love me still in the depths of your heart.”

While his wife remained in Paris attending Napoleon's new empress well into the summer of 1810, Murat continued organizing his expedition against Sicily, which he hoped to reunite with Naples under one--his--crown. But unbeknownst to Murat, though his brother-in-law had given the expedition his approval--including a small force of French troops, commanded by French generals--Napoleon …

Continue reading “Perhaps you love me still in the depths of your heart.”

“We would be driven to a state of barbarism”

Continuing with Louise Murat's memoirs, we arrive at Murat's decision, in 1815, to march in support of Napoleon following his brother-in-law's triumphant return from Elba. Murat had been urged by Joseph Bonaparte to try to convince Emperor Francis of Austria to ally himself to Napoleon; but the letter Murat ends up sending Francis towards the …

Continue reading “We would be driven to a state of barbarism”

“My annoying opposition to his politics”

Part 3 of Murat-related excerpts from the memoirs of Neapolitan General Guglielmo Pépé. In this excerpt, Pépé discusses the first, ultimately unsuccessful attempt at pushing King Joachim to grant the Neapolitans a constitution in 1814; Lord William Bentinck's personal dislike for Murat; and Murat's inclination towards rewarding those of his generals whose politics (unlike Pépé's) …

Continue reading “My annoying opposition to his politics”

“You can never know how attached to you I am”

Today--25 March--is the shared birthday of Joachim & Caroline Murat (in 1767 & 1782, respectively), so I've put together a little something to provide some insight into their relationship. There's one period in particular during which an abundance of letters exists from Caroline to Joachim: their long separation(s) during most of 1810. Joachim and Caroline …

Continue reading “You can never know how attached to you I am”

“The false words attributed to him”

Emmanuel-Augustin-Dieudonné-Joseph, Count de Las Cases, was one of the few men to voluntarily accompany Napoleon into exile on Saint Helena, along with his son. There, he served the deposed Emperor as a secretary, recording numerous conversations with Napoleon and taking extensive notes, which he later turned into the Mémorial de Sainte-Hélène following his expulsion from the island …

Continue reading “The false words attributed to him”

“I could have fallen at his feet and worshipped him”

Part 2 of Murat-related excerpts from the memoirs of Guglielmo Pépé. This part begins with Pépé's recollection of his first meeting with Murat in Florence in 1802, continues with the crowning and general reception of Murat as King of Naples six years later (and their reaction to Napoleon naming Caroline his immediate heir), and ends …

Continue reading “I could have fallen at his feet and worshipped him”