Monday, September 26, 2011


Her life in brief.
Joséphine de Beauharnais, the first Empress of the French, had a life, in many ways, as tumultuous as her famous husband, Napoleon Bonaparte. She made many friends, many enemies and was able to inspire intense feelings of devotion and anger in the “Little Corporal”. Despite their many ups and downs, probably no other woman ever held the affection of the parvenu emperor in quite the same way as his beloved Joséphine. A product of the colonial empire of the Kingdom of France, she was born Marie Joséphe Rose Tascher de La Pagerie on the Caribbean island of Martinique on June 23, 1763. Her father was an officer in the Troupes de Marine and after a hurricane devastated the family sugar plantation a profitable marriage was sought for Joséphine in an effort to change the fortunes of the family. As a result, on December 13, 1779 Joséphine was married to Alexandre Vicomte de Beauharnais but, despite the birth of a son and daughter in subsequent years, the marriage was not a happy one. (Read entire post.)

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