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Bernadotte

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duglasbell@hotmail.co.uk
1356688.  Sat Aug 22, 2020 1:10 pm Reply with quote

I can't quite remember offhand what series it comes from but the story of Count Bernadotte having a tattoo on his leg (or arm) may not be true.

The story goes like this “Jean Bernadotte was a military officer in the French army during the revolution. Perhaps it was during this time, perhaps through the very anti-monarchist Club des Jacobins of Robespierre, that he got the alleged tattoo as described above. It had of course to be hidden very well later on, in particular when he in 1810 got elected heir-presumptive of the Swedish throne, and even more so when he became King of Sweden (he's the ancestor of the current royal family). In some versions the tattoo is revealed on his deathbed.”

You even find the story in several history books. But it is untrue. It was coined in the comedy Le Camarade de Lit, "The Bedfellow", by Louis-Émile Vanderburch and Ferdinand Langlé. It premiered in 1833, at the Paials-Royal of all places, and was quite a success with the audience (less so with the King). The tattoo is part of the play, used for extortion.

What is probably more true it that Bernadotte wrote in one of his letters (1797):

“Being a republican both by principle and by conviction, I want to fight all royalists to my death.” (Translated)

 

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