Marie- Caroline de Bourbon-Siciles, aka the Duchesse de Berry was born in Naples the daughter of the Crown Prince Francis Duke of Calabria and Marie Clementine of Austria, niece of Marie Antoinette. At the time of her birth in 1798 Napoleon was charging his way through Italy forcing the family to flee to Palermo and later pushing them into Sisily.
Marie-Caroline found her way to France after her marriage to Charles Ferdinand, Duc de Berry son of Charles X. Louis XVIII was in power and without an heir Sixty years old and a widow he declared his nephew his rightful heir to the throne. Charles Ferdinand needed a wife, although he had many mistresses and children in France and England. The two were married in Notre Dame de Paris on June 17, 1816.
In 1830 after the Three Glorious Day in July the family was forced to exile as Charles X was ousted. De Berry believed her son Henri who now took on the self-appointed title Henri V should be the king of France. Trying to gather enough support from other legitimate royal family members that she was trying to boost as she exiled to Italy.
As word spread that she had returned to France she was a wanted woman. In Nantes, she hid in the home of Madame Duguigny across from the chateau of the Duke of Brittany. De Berry met her match in Simon Deutz who had learned of her hiding place and reported to the police who arrived to arrest her. Needing a place to hide she crawled up into the chimney, a great place to hide until one of the men lit a fire. Forcing her out she was arrested on November 7, 1832, and placed into jail.
The plot thickens when she announces she is pregnant. The exiled royal family got word and turned their back on her. While she said she had secretly wed Hector-Lucichese-Palli, the dates weren’t adding up and was exiled from France to Palermo, and her children were left with Madame Royale, daughter of Marie Antoinette in Goritz.
Her final years were spent between the Chateau in Brunnsee, Austria, and in Venice. On April 16, 1810, she died in Austria at 71 years old.
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