Countess of Lipona
Caroline Murat and daughter Letizia in 1807. The painting is by Élisabeth Vigée-Lebrun
|Grand Duchess consort of Berg and Cleves|
|Tenure||15 March 1806 – 1 August 1808|
|Queen consort of Naples|
|Tenure||1 August 1808 – 3 May 1815|
|Born||25 March 1782
|Died||18 May 1839 (aged 57)
Florence, Grand Duchy of Tuscany
|Spouse||Joachim, King of Naples
|Achille, Crown Prince of Naples
Lucien, Prince Murat
Maria Annunziata Carolina (Marie Annonciade Caroline) Murat (née Bonaparte) (25 March 1782 – 18 May 1839), better known as Caroline Bonaparte, was the seventh surviving child and third surviving daughter of Carlo Buonaparte and Letizia Ramolino, and a younger sister of Napoleon I of France.
Caroline was born in Ajaccio, Corsica. She was a younger sister of Joseph Bonaparte, Napoléon Bonaparte, Lucien Bonaparte, Elisa Bonaparte, Louis Bonaparte and Pauline Bonaparte. She was an older sister of Jérôme Bonaparte.
In 1793, Caroline moved with her family to France during the French Revolution. There, she fell in love with Joachim Murat, one of her brother's generals, and they married on 20 January 1800. Caroline was seventeen years old. Initially, Napoleon did not wish to allow them to marry, however, his wife Joséphine de Beauharnais persuaded him to change his mind. Caroline had been a pupil at the school in St-Germain-en-Laye founded by Madame Jeanne Campan. She attended the school at the same time as Hortense, Joséphine's daughter and Caroline's brother Louis' wife.
Queen of Naples
She became Grand Duchess of Berg and Cleves on 15 March 1806 and Queen consort of Naples on 1 August 1808. She was intensely jealous of her sister-in-law Joséphine and her children, as she felt Napoleon favored them over his Bonaparte relatives. Caroline continuously plotted against Joséphine. It was Caroline who arranged for Napoleon to take a mistress, Éléonore Denuelle, who duly gave birth to his first illegitimate child. This had the desired effect of establishing that Joséphine was infertile as Napoleon showed he was clearly capable of siring children.
When Napoleon married his second Empress Consort Marie Louise of Austria, Caroline was responsible for escorting her to France. After meeting her at the border of Austria and her duchy, Caroline forced Marie-Louise to leave all her luggage, servants, and even her pet dog, behind in Austria.
Consequently, she devoted herself to the interests of her husband Joachim Murat, the King of Naples. Her relations with Napoleon became increasingly strained in 1813–1814, as Joachim shifted allegiances. She supported his decision to make a separate peace with the anti-Napoleonic allies, keeping his throne while Napoleon was deposed. Then, during the Hundred Days of 1815, Joachim came out for Napoleon. He was defeated and executed, and Caroline fled to the Austrian Empire. Whilst in exile, she adopted the title 'Countess of Lipona'; 'Lipona' being an anagram of 'Napoli' (Naples).
In 1830, she married Francesco Macdonald (1777–1837), who had been Minister of War of the Kingdom of Naples in 1814 and 1815. She lived in Florence until her death in 1839. The couple had no children.
One of her direct descendants is the American actor René Auberjonois. Specifically, he is her great-great-great-grandson.
Caroline and Joachim were the parents of four children:
- Achille Charles Louis Napoléon Murat, 1st Sovereign Prince of Pontecorvo, 2nd Prince Murat (Paris, 21 January 1801 - Jefferson County, Florida, 15 April 1847), m. Tallahassee, Florida, 12 July 1826 Catherine Daingerfield Willis (near Fredericksburg, Virginia, 17 August 1803 - Tallahassee, Florida, 6 August 1867), daughter of Colonel Byrd C. Willis (29 August 1781 - 1846) and wife Mary Lewis, without issue;
- Princess Marie Letizia Joséphine Annonciade Murat (Paris, 26 April 1802 - Bologna, 12 March 1859), m. Venice, 27 October 1823 Guido Taddeo Pepoli, Marchese Pepoli, Conte di Castiglione (Bologna, 7 September 1789 - Bologna, 2 March 1852), and had one daughter;
- Lucien Charles Joseph Napoléon Murat, 2nd Sovereign Prince of Pontecorvo, 3rd Prince Murat (Milan, 16 May 1803 - Paris, 10 April 1878), m. Bordentown, New Jersey, 18 August 1831 Caroline Georgina Fraser (Charleston, South Carolina, 13 April 1810 - Paris, 10 February 1879), daughter of Thomas Fraser and wife Anne Lauton, and had issue; he was an associate of his first cousin Napoleon III of France;
- Princess Louise Julie Caroline Murat (Paris, 21 March 1805 - Ravenna, 1 December 1889), m. Trieste, 25 October 1825 Giulio Conte Rasponi (Ravenna, 19 February 1787 - Florence, 19 July 1876), had issue.
|Ancestors of Caroline Bonaparte|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Caroline Bonaparte.|
- Frances Mossiker "Napoleon and Joséphine, pp.282-84.
- Caroline Bonaparte
|Queen Consort of Naples
1 August 1808–3 May 1815
María Isabella of Spain
as Queen of the Two-Sicilies