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I Borboni di Napoli; Les Bourbons de Naples

non-fiction, pub:1862-1864, action:1804-1815

    I Borboni di Napoli (italien/Italian)

From A Bibliography of Alexandre Dumas père by Frank Wild Reed:
     A history of the Bourbons of Naples, written in Italian by Dumas, and not translated into French. So it has always been declared, but the discovery of "Le Monte-Cristo" for 1862 reveals the fact that a French text of probably at least the first two volumes appeared therein, as "Les Bourbons de Naples." It is unlikely that he had any collaborator for this work. It comprises a documented history of Naples under Charles III., Ferdinand I., Joseph Bonaparte and Joachim Murat. Period covered 1804-1815.
     For some years Dumas had access to the private royal archives at Naples, including letters by all the principal personages of the period of Ferdinand I. : Nelson, the Hamiltons, the royal family, Caracciolo, Ruffo, etc., as well as the single copy of every squib, pamphlet, ballad, etc., which King Ferdinand had retained for his own amusement when he commanded all others to be burnt, under pain of the severest punishment for all who retained them. Thus Dumas' works of this period are of very special interest.
     The following is a brief synopsis :— (1)
     (1) I owe this synopsis, as well as the list of titles of the various volumes on the next page, and a translation of Dumas' preface, introduction, and a specimen chapter, to the kindness of my friend, Mr. R. S. Garnett.
     Napoleon Emperor and King of Italy.—He is irritated by the double-dealing of King Ferdinand, and resolves to expel the Bourbons from Naples.—Sends an expedition under his brother Joseph.—Consternation in the Neapolitan court, which retires to Sicily.—Joseph receives the crown of Naples.—Institutes reforms.—The English take Capri.—Napoleon offers Joseph the crown of Spain, which he accepts.—Impressions left on the Neapolitans by his reign.—Murat becomes King of Naples.—Early life of Murat.—His adventurous career.—Marries Caroline Bonaparte.—Begins his reign by re-taking Capri from Hudson Lowe.—Anglo-Sicilian fleet enters the Bay of Naples and takes Ischia and Procida.—Neapolitan flotilla eludes capture and returns in safety.—News of Wagram and of peace between France and Austria causes the Anglo-Sicilian fleet to retire.—Brigands again troublesome. Manhes sent to suppress them ; succeeds in pacifying the Abruzzi.—Murat discontented with his subordinate position.—Opposes divorce of Josephine and the Austrian alliance.—Prepares to conquer Sicily.—Expedition fails owing to Napoleon's secret orders.—Brigands in Calabria.—Manhes sent there with full powers. "Not a man, but the Destroying Angel."—Rise of the Carbonari. Murat at first protects, then endeavours to suppress them.—War with Russia, 1812.—Murât begs permission to serve under the Emperor.—The Russian campaign.—Brilliant services of Murat, his desperate valour.—After the retreat from Moscow, Murat quarrels with Napoleon and returns to Naples.—Project of making himself King of United Italy.—Secret negotiations with Lord Henry Bentinck, English minister at the Sicilian court.—News of the victory of Lützen.—Murat, alarmed for his crown, intrusts negotiations with the English to his wife, and rejoins Napoleon.—After the defeat of Leipsic, Murat returns to Naples.—Negotiations with Austria; treaty signed in January, 1814.—Napoleon in Elba, May, 1814.—Insecure position of Murat.—Napolean escapes from Elba and lands in France.—Murat declares war on Austria. General Pepe's account of the campaign.—Defeat of Tolentino.—Murat seeks refuge in France, then in Corsica.—Attempts to regain his kingdom. Lands at Pizzo, is seized, tried and shot.
     First published in Dumas' Italian journal: "L'Indipendente," and, as above, a portion in "Le Monte-Cristo" during 1862.
     Original edition : Naples, 10 vols., 8vo., 1862-64.
     Vols.I. & II.Carlo III. e Ferdinando I.
     III. & IV.Ferdinando I.
     V. Documenti de Regno di Carlo I. e Ferdinando I.
     VI. Guiseppe Napoleone in Napoli e Ferdinando I. in Sicilia..
     VII. Murat in Russia e Ferdinando I. in Sicilia.
     VIII. Gioacchino Murat in Russia.
     IX. Murat e Francesco I. vicario in Sicilia.
     X. Morte di Murat.
     These volumes are each of from 300 to 350 pages.

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