“It once served… one of our most valiant sovereigns”

Murat entered Warsaw on the 28th of November, 1806, enthusiastically welcomed by the Poles, who believed the French would bring them independence. Even the Duchess d'Abrantes, who was no great admirer of Murat, wrote of that his "splendid type of chivalrous valour... pleased that brave and most impressionable people, which was ready to follow with …

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“I had gone to him… in true despair”

My good friend JosefaVomJaaga has graciously allowed me to share her translation of an excerpt on Murat from Friedrich von Müller’s Erinnerungen aus den Kriegszeiten von (Memoirs of the Wartime of) 1806-1813. Müller (1779-1849) was a Bavarian statesman, and a friend of Goethe; he would eventually manage to persuade Napoleon to permit Weimar to retain …

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“The failure of his absurd enterprise”

We left off yesterday with Countess Potocka's rather unflattering description of Murat following his triumphant entry into Poland in November of 1806; today we will continue with the Countess's recollection of Murat's clumsy and, ultimately, unsuccessful attempt to arrange a liaison with her. This occurs shortly after the arrival of Napoleon and the beginning of …

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“He had the majestic air of actors who are playing kings”

In the interest of ensuring this blog maintains an objective view of its subject, from time to time I intend to post primary accounts that recollect Murat in a negative manner; my goal is to be Murat's biographer, not his hagiographer. And Murat, it must be admitted, was definitely not everyone's cup of tea. Hortense, …

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