Armand Augustin Louis de Caulaincourt
|Armand-Augustin-Louis de Caulaincourt|
General Caulaincourt, Duke of Vicenza.
9 December 1773|
Caulaincourt, Aisne, France
|Died||2 July 1827
|Allegiance|| Kingdom of France,
Kingdom of France (1791–1792),
French First Republic,
First French Empire,
|Years of service||1788–1813|
|Rank||General of Division|
|Battles/wars||French Revolutionary Wars,
|Awards||Name inscribed under the Arc de Triomphe,
Duke of Vicenza
|Relations||Gabriel Louis de Caulaincourt (father),
Auguste-Jean-Gabriel de Caulaincourt (brother),
|Other work||Minister of Foreign Affairs,
Grand Marshal of the Palace,
Ambassador to Saint-Petersburg
In 1792 he was a captain, but he was thrown into prison—probably because he had rendered himself obnoxious to the democrats. He was freed, but on condition that he should serve as a simple grenadier. He did so for three years, when, through the intercession of General Hoche, he was restored to his former rank as captain. Yet even after ten years of service, his advancements were very slow.
He eventually attained the rank of colonel in the Army of the Rhine in 1799–1800. After the peace of Lunéville in 1801 he was sent to St Petersburg by Napoleon. His mission was ostensibly to compliment Alexander I on his accession to the crown, but in reality to destroy the English influence in that court.
On his return he was named aide-de-camp of the First Consul. He was employed to seize some agents of the English government in Baden in 1804, which led to the accusation that he was implicated in the arrest of the duc d'Enghien, which he vigorously denied.
After the establishment of the empire he received various honors and was given the title of Duke of Vicenza in 1808, a duché grand-fief (a rare, nominal but hereditary honor; extinguished in 1896). In 1807, Napoleon had sent him as an ambassador to St. Petersburg, where Caulaincourt tried to maintain the alliance of Tilsit. His tasks were more those of a spy than an ambassador, and although Napoleon's ambition made the task a difficult one, Caulaincourt succeeded in it for some years.
In 1810, Caulaincourt strongly advised Napoleon to renounce his proposed expedition to Russia. During the war he accompanied the emperor and was one of those whom Napoleon took along with him when he suddenly left his army in Poland to return to Paris in December 1812. At the beginning of 1813, following the death of general Duroc, Caulaincourt took up the position of Grand Marshal of the Palace. He was charged with all diplomatic negotiations and signed the armistice of Pleswitz, June 1813, represented France at the congress of Prague in August 1813, and at the Treaty of Fontainebleau on 10 April 1814.
During the first Bourbon Restoration, Caulaincourt lived in obscure retirement.
After the second Restoration, Caulaincourt's name was on the list of those proscribed, but it was erased on the personal intervention of Alexander I with Louis XVIII. Caulaincourt's famous memoir, "With Napoleon in Russia" was lost for years and finally unearthed after World War I. Many years of restoration followed and it was finally published for the first time in 1933.
- This is version of his name appears in Fierro, Alfredo; Palluel-Guillard, André; Tulard, Jean – "Histoire et Dictionnaire du Consulat et de l'Empire”, Éditions Robert Laffont, ISBN 2-221-05858-5, p. 600.
- In the English translation of the Treaty of Fontainebleau (1814) his name and title is given as Armand-Augustin Louis de Caulaincourt, Duke of Vicenza (Alphonse de Lamartine (translated by Michael Rafter). The History of the Restoration of Monarchy in France. H. G. Bohn, 1854 (New York Public Library). pp 201–207)
Sources and references 
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
- Caulaincourt's memoirs appeared under the title Souvenirs du duc de Vicence in 1837–1840.
- Albert Vandal, Napoleon et Alexandre (Paris, 1891–1895);
- Tatischeff, Alexandre I et Napoleon (Paris, 1892);
- H Houssaye, 1814 (Paris, 1888), and 1815 (Paris, 1893).
- Heraldica.org- Napoleonic heraldry
- At Napoleon's Side in Russia: The Classic Eyewitness Account by Armand de Caulaincourt (Enigma Books, 2001: ISBN 978-1-929631-17-9)
Hugues-Bernard Maret, Duc de Bassano
|Minister of Foreign Affairs
20 November 1813 – 1 April 1814
Antoine René Charles Mathurin, comte de Laforest
Charles Maurice de Talleyrand
|Minister of Foreign Affairs
20 March 1815 – 22 June 1815
Louis Pierre Edouard, Baron Bignon