Bonaparte, Jérôme

BORN 15 Nov 1784, Ajaccio, Corse-du-Sud - DIED 24 Jun 1860, Villegenis (now: Massy, Essone) (near Paris)
GRAVE LOCATION Paris: Dôme des Invalides

Younger brother of Napoleon I. He was educated as a navy officer and went to the United States, where he married Elisabeth Patterson on 27 Dec 1803. But his brother the emperor had other plans and forced him to divorce her in 1805 (A son, Jérôme Napoleon Bonaparte, was born in 1805 London). On 22 Aug 1807 he married Catharina of Württemberg and in the same year he became king of the new kingdom of Westfalen.

He took residence at Wilhelmshöhe near Kassel. He was very popular with the people and his huge spending of money earned him the nickname 'König Lustig'. In 1813 he had to leave Westfalen, but he remained faithful to his brother until the emperor abdicated for the second time in 1815. His wife's father wanted to annul their marriage, but Catharina decided to follow him abroad and lived with him until her death in 1835.

He lived in Austria until 1827 and then in Italy until Louis Napoleon Bonaparte seized power in France in 1848. He was made governor of governor of Les Invalides, where Napoleon I was buried. In 1850 he became a Marshal of France and received the title 'Prince Français'. In 1853 he married Giustina, Marchesa Baldelli, the widow of a nobleman.

24/12/1852Napoleon III declares Jerôme Bonaparte heir to the throne. Jerôme was his uncle and a brother of Napoleon I. [Napoleon III Bonaparte]
16/8/1857Napoleon III awards the first Médailles de Sainte-Hélène. He gave the medals to his uncle Jérome Bonaparte, Comte Vaillant (Minister of War), admiral Hamelin (Minister of Marine), Duc the Plaisance (chancellor of the Légion d'Honneur), General de Flahaut, Comte Ornano (governor of the Invalides), Admiral Perceval-Deschênes and others. [Flahault de la Billarderie, Charles de][Napoleon III Bonaparte]


Jerome Bonaparte's tomb at the Dôme des Invalides, Paris.
Picture by Androom (17 Nov 2006)


Miroir de l'Histoire 108, Paris, 1958
Summa Encyclopedie
Winkler Prins Encyclopedie (editie 1909), 1909

Bonaparte, Joseph

Published: 24 Feb 2007
Last update: 31 Jan 2024