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Louis Bonaparte
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Monarch
    (September 2, 1778-July 25, 1846)
    Born in Ajaccio, Corsica, France
    Younger brother of Napoleon Bonaparte
    King of Holland (1806-1810)
    Went into exile in Austria (1810-13) and Switzerland (1813-14)
    Returned to France (1814-15)
    Went into exile in Italy (1815-46)
    Father of Napoleon III
    He suffered from depression.
    His wife, Hortense de Beauharnais, was the daughter of Empress Josephine from Josephine’s first marriage. In short, he married his step-niece.
    In one of his early attempts to address his new subjects in their own language, he called himself the ’rabbit’ (konijn) of Holland instead of ‘king’ (koning).
    He moved the Dutch capital twelve times, prompting the European diplomatic corps to petition him to remain in one place so they could keep up with him.
    During most of his reign as king, Hortense insisted on remaining in Paris and refused to let their sons live with their father in Holland.
    He was nicknamed Louis the Good after he personally oversaw relief efforts during flooding in Holland (1809).
    Napoleon complained that he put Dutch interests ahead of those of France, which eventually prompted Napoleon to engineer his removal from the throne.

Credit: C. Fishel


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