the junior of twelve children, landlords parents, undertakes
studies with the seminar of Lazaristes of Toulouse. In February
1787, following a quarrel with a comrade, he gives up the ecclesiastical
way to engage in a regiment of hunters with horse. In two years,
he becomes sergeant. Mingled with a mutiny, he is returned army.
When his father sees him returning, he closes his purse to him.
Murat is made grocer. Already, his plume impresses and he is
indicated by his canton to take part in the festival of the Federation
of July 14, 1790. The following year, he obtains to be reinstated
in the rows of the army like private. He is named second lieutenant
on May 30, 1791. One moment worried by the fall of Robespierre,
this enthusiastic republican went until adopting the name of
Marat finds himself finally without assignment in this end of
the year 1794, in Paris. With the paddle of the 13-Vendémiaire,
Barred and a young Corsican General, Bonaparte, ask for a volunteer
to recover the guns parked with Fine sands. Murat proposes.
returns with 40 parts, which will make him possible to choke
the royalist insurrection.By this epic, Murat binds his destiny
to that of Bonaparte. This last appoints him head of brigade
on February 2, 1796 and does of them one of him aide-de-camps.
For this reason, Murat accompanies him in Italy in 1796 when
he is announced by his bravery. Charged with carrying the enemy
flags to the Directory, in Paris, he is also requested to intercede
at Joséphine so that she joins her husband. He returns
from Paris with the rank of brigadier general. He takes part
in the head office of Mantoue. After Campoformio, Bonaparte sends
him to the congress of Rastatt.
Egypt, Murat is illustrated with the head of a brigade of cavalry.
After the catch of Alexandria (July 2, 1798) and the battle of
the Pyramids (July 21, 1798), he is the first to be gone up to
the attack of Saint-Jean-in Acre (March 28, 1799), during the
forwarding of Syria. With the battle of Aboukir, July 25, 1799,
he seizes personally the pasha Mustapha, with whom he slices
two fingers in the fire of the action. That is worth a not very
ordinary wound to him a ball crosses to him the jaw right through
and the rank of major general. Murat became a popular figure.
However, throughout the years spent together, Bonaparte will
be abrupt with that which gave him pledges of his honesty the
18-Brumaire while launching to his grenadiers in front of the
flabbergasted members of Parliament: «Get me all that people
outside!». Bonaparte grants the hand of his sister Caroline
to him, in February 1800, but after the intervention of Joséphine.
He does him marshal in 1804, Lord High Admiral and prince the
following year, but seems to be repugnant to entrust significant
commands to him.
Governor of Paris in 1804, Murat signs with reserve the appointment
of the committee which governs the execution of the duke of Enghien.
He leaves the following year for the campaign Austria, with the
head of all the cavalry. After the catch of Ulm (October 15-20,
1805), he continues the Russian and Austrian armies along the
Danube. Whereas Napoleon orders to him to cover the sides of
the Grande Armée, he enters Vienna to the head of his
men, November 11, 1805. Napoleon makes him severe remonstrances
for this act of insubordination. Murat is caught up by his control
at the time of the battle of Austerlitz, December 2.
Napoleon grants to him the Grand Duchy of Berg and Clèves
in 1806; he needs a right-hand man to ensure the continental
blockade. Murat tastes with the capacity, proves to be concerned
wellbeing of his subjects. It is the occasion of new tensions
with the Emperor, who recalls him soon in the rows. In 1806,
indeed, Prussia, England, Sweden and Russia declared the war
in France. Murat drives out the Prussians to Leipzig, takes part
brilliantly in the battle of Iéna on October 14, 1806,
makes capitulate Blücher with Lübeck. He enters the
first to Warsaw on November 28, 1806. From Eylau (February 8,
1807), he orders all the French cavalry. On the command of Napoleon,
he launches his troops to push back the Russian center. This
load remains in the legend under the name of «load of the
offers to Murat the crown of Naples in 1808, but provided that
he remains a pawn of imperial politics. Murat undoubtedly dreamed
of the Spanish throne for which he paid his person. Sent in Spain
without precise instructions, it is him which represses hard
the insurrection of May 2, 1808, organizes the exodus of Ferdinand
VII and Charles IV towards Bayonne. And this finally acquired
Neapolitan crown, he shiveres to be seen some unbrushed, following
the example king of Holland, whose kingdom is purely and simply
annexed to the Empire in 1810.
This commoner proves to be a conscientious king. He introduces
reforms, organizes an army... The frictions with the Emperor
begin again, exacerbated by the dissension between Caroline and
Murat, who dispute the capacity.
In 1812, Napoleon calls his brother-in-law at his sides for the
campaign of Russia, again with the head of the cavalry. During
the six months of the campaign, Murat will be constantly in contact
with the Russian armies. At the time of the battle of Borodino
on September 7, he charges with the head with 15 000 riders to
the front with the Russian guns.
Whereas Napoleon is in Moscow, in October 1812, he misses being
made encircled in Taroutino (October 18, 1812) but manages to
get clear. In December, Napoleon leaves him the command of the
Grande Armée to return precipitately to Paris. Murat does
not want this command: he wants to save his kingdom. In Wilna,
he loses his coolness and gives up the Grande Armée. Of
return in Naples, he writes to Napoleon to explain his control.
He asks to return to the service of the Emperor.
He returns to take part in the summer campaign of 1813; Napoleon
entrusts to him the command of the Army of the south, charged
to contain Coalisés of Schwarzenberg. After the defeat
of Leipzig (October 16-19, 1813), he comes back to his kingdom.
In January 1814, Murat signs a treaty with Austria.
For the congress of Vienna of 1815, generous subsidies which
he paid with the diplomats, Talleyrand in particular, are not
used of nothing. It is a question of restoring the Bourbons about
the Neapolitan throne. Murat, despaired, tries openings on all
sides; he writes a cordial letter to Louis XVIII, joins again
with Napoleon exiled in the island of Elba. This last announces
his project of returnt o him. Murat declares the war in Austria
as soon as he learns the unloading from the Emperor. He occupies
soon Rome, Ancône, Bologna. From Rimini, he launches a
proclamation where he calls the unification of Italy. But soon
the Austrian troops, carried out by Neipperg, encircle him. It
is the defeat of Tolentino, April 21, 1815.
Murat must escape while Ferdinand finds his throne. He arrives
to France where Napoleon refuses to receive him. In Corsica,
he brings together 600 men. That is enough for him to dream to
reconquer Naples; he embarks for the Italian coast. Unloaded
in Pizzo, he is made prisoner, imprisoned. A decree of the King
orders at the commission which judges him to leave him «half
an hour to receive the helps of the religion» before shooting
him. Murat gives himself the command to shoot, October 13, 1815.