The New International Encyclopædia/Charles XIV. John
|←Charles XIII.||The New International Encyclopædia
Charles XIV. John
|Edition of 1905. See also Charles XIV John of Sweden on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.|
CHARLES XIV. JOHN (1704-1844). King of Sweden and Norway from 1818 to 1844, and before his elevation to the throne General Jean Baptiste Jules Bernadotte, a celebrated marshal of Napoleon. He was born in Pau, France, January 26, 1764, the son of a French lawyer. He fought in the Revolutionary wars from 1794 as general of division) in Belgium, Germany, and Italy, and in 1799, in the last year of the Directory, was Minister of War. In 1800 he suppressed a rising of the Chouans, and in 1804 Napoleon created him marshal. He bore a distinguished part in the victory of Austerlitz in 1805, for which he was made Prince of Pontecorvo, and won fresh laurels in the campaign against the Prussians in 1806-07 and at Wagram in 1809. He was never one of the personal following of Napoleon, who appears to have been jealous of the general. He was chosen by the Swedish Diet in 1810 Crown Prince and successor of Charles XIII. (q.v.). The only condition of moment was that he should become a Protestant. Bernadotte agreed, changed his name to Charles John, and soon began to exercise many of the royal functions. The Crown Prince resisted the efforts of Napoleon to involve Sweden in his designs against England. The country was soon engaged in war with France, and at the head of the northern troops Prince Charles joined the Allies in the final struggle with Napoleon, and contributed to the victory of Leipzig (October, 1813). He forced Denmark in the Treaty of Kiel to give up Norway, and conducted the campaign for its subjugation (1814). Charles XIII. died in 1818, and was succeeded by Prince Charles John as Charles XIV. John. The period of his administration was characterized by progress in all directions, both public and private. Charles was the only one of Napoleon's generals who founded a permanent dynasty. He died March 8, 1844. The present royal house of Sweden and Norway is descended from Bernadotte, but intermarriage with Germans has made it thoroughly Teutonic. See Sweden. Consult: Meredith, Memorials of Charles John, King of Sweden and Norway (London, 1829); Sarrans, Histoire de Bernadotte, Charles XIV. Jean (Paris, 1845); Recueil des lettres, discours et proclamations de Charles XIV. Jean (Stockholm, 1858).