Lucien Bonaparte (1775-1840), Prince Français
The third son of Carlo and Letizia Buonaparte, Lucien was born in Corsica and educated on the French mainland, returning to his homeland at the time of the revolution. In 1793, having embraced the Jacobin cause, he was forced to flee to Marseilles along with the rest of the family. In 1798, at the age of 24, Lucien succeeded his brother Joseph as deputy for Corsica in the Council of Five Hundred, and a year later he would be instrumental in moving the council session to Saint-Cloud and inciting the grenadiers to clear the hall when Napoleon’s overtures were rebuffed by the deputies. Even so, he later disapproved of Napoleon’s dynastic ambitions and secretly married against his brother’s wishes, as a result of which he was forced into exile in Italy. Hounded by Napoleon even there, he attempted to escape to America in 1809, but was captured by the British Navy and spent several years in England. In a final gesture of reconciliation, Lucien rallied to Napoleon during the Hundred Days and stood by him until his final abdication. He would spend his remaining years in Italy, where he wrote about French history.