A history of this important person from the Napoleonic epoc. Known as Juliette was a French socialite, whose salon drew Parisians from the leading literary and political circles of the early 19th century. As an icon of neoclassicism, Récamier cultivated a public persona of herself as a great beauty and her fame quickly spread across Europe. She befriended many intellectuals, sat for the finest artists of the age.
From the earliest days of the French Consulate to almost the end of the July Monarchy, Récamier's salon in Paris was one of the chief resorts of literary and political society that followed what was fashionable. The habitués of her house included many former royalists, with others, such as General Jean Bernadotte and General Jean Victor Moureau, more or less disaffected to the government. This circumstance, together with her refusal to act as lady-in-waiting to Empress consort Joséphine de Beauharnais and her friendship for Germaine de Staël, brought her under suspicion. It was through Germaine de Staël that Récamier became acquainted with Benjamin Constant, a Swiss-French political activist and writer, whose political equivocations during the last days of the First French Empire and the first of the Bourbon Restoration have been attributed to her persuasions. She was eventually exiled from Paris by the orders of Napoleon. After a short stay at her native Lyon, she proceeded to Rome, and finally to Naples. There she was on exceedingly good terms with Joachim Murat and his wife Caroline Bonaparte, who were then intriguing with the Bourbons. She persuaded Constant to plead the claims of Murat in a memorandum addressed to the Congress of Vienna, and also induced him to take up a decided attitude in opposition to Napoleon's return during the Hundred Days.
Madame Recamier and Her Friends
1867 Knight and Millet Boston