Tag Archives: Napoleon

Napoleon visitant les pestiférés à Jaffa

French classical painter Antoine-Jean Gros was born on March 16, 1771 in Paris. The son of a painter of miniatures, he studied under Jacques-Louis David. Following the death of his father in 1791, he went to Italy, and it was … Continue reading

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Raplapla

My husband’s favorite part of our Paris vacation was a day trip to the Château of Fontainebleau. He’d never been before and I hadn’t been there for ten years. I was amazed by all of the changes in the last … Continue reading

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Être à la bourre

After having visited several exhibits dedicated to Napoléon and Joséphine in recent years, it had been on my mind to visit Malmaison, Empress Joséphine’s home on the outskirts of Paris. It’s easy to get to; from La Defence, take bus … Continue reading

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Récamier

Some faces launch 1,000 ships; some faces immortalize a piece of furniture. Jeanne-Françoise Julie Adélaïde Récamier (ray-cam-ee-ay), otherwise known as Juliette, was born on December 4, 1777. Her family was from Lyon, and her father was part of the king’s … Continue reading

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Une fontaine de jouvence

I’ve only visited Fontainebleau once, but it’s just gone higher on my list of places to see the next time I’m in France. Until now, only about one third of the home to 34 kings and emperors has been open … Continue reading

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Un realisateur de films

A few years ago, I took a course on Napoléon. Our final day was dedicated to watching the monumental five hour epic about the Corsican general directed by Abel Gance. The professor grew misty-eyed when rhapsodizing about Gance’s brilliance. Gance, … Continue reading

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Mémoires d’outre-tombe

French writer, politician, diplomat, and historian François-René, vicomte de Chateaubriand was born on September 4, 1768. He was the son of an aristocratic but dysfunctional family from Saint-Malo. His father was a morose slave trader and his only close friend … Continue reading

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Faire bouillir la marmite

French singer Serge Lama was born on February 11, 1943. His most famous song, “Je suis malade” has been recorded by numerous artists including Dalida and Lara Fabian, but I think Lama does it best. His father had to give … Continue reading

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L’impossible est le refuge des poltrons

Napoléon Buonaparte (later changed to Bonaparte) was born on Corsica, August 15, 1769, a year after it became French. For the purpose of focusing on the finest in French culture, which is, after all, the mandate of this blog, I’m … Continue reading

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Le baccalauréat

It’s time for le baccalauréat (luh back-a-lor-ay-a) in France, or le bac, as it’s colloquially known. Napoléon I introduced the exam in 1806. Today, it’s basically de rigueur for those wanting to attend French universities. It’s not required for high … Continue reading

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