Louis XVIII, Roi de France et de Navarre

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Louis XVIII, Roi de France et de Navarre
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P Audinet after H Danloux
Louis XVIII, Roi de France et de Navarre
Paris ca. 1820
Engraving
250 x 190 mm.
£85
Louis XVIII (Louis Stanislas Xavier; 17 November 1755 – 16 September 1824), known as "the Unavoidable", was King of France and of Navarre from 1814 to 1824, omitting the Hundred Days in 1815. Louis XVIII spent twenty-three years in exile, from 1791 to 1814, during the French Revolution and the First French Empire, and again in 1815, for 100 days, upon the return of Napoleon from Elba. While in exile, he lived in Prussia, the United Kingdom and Russia.
The First French Republic abolished the monarchy and deposed King Louis XVI on 21 September 1792. Although the monarchy had been disestablished, Louis XVIII succeeded his nephew, Louis XVII, as titular King, when the latter died in prison in June 1795.
When the coalition armies captured Paris from Napoleon in 1814, Louis XVIII was restored to what he, and Royalists, considered his rightful place. Louis XVIII ruled as king for slightly less than a decade, during the Bourbon Restoration period. The Bourbon Restoration was a constitutional monarchy (unlike the Ancien Régime, which was absolute). As a constitutional monarch, Louis XVIII's royal prerogative was reduced substantially by the Charter of 1814, France's new constitution. Louis had no children; therefore, upon his death, the crown passed to his brother, Charles, Count of Artois. Louis XVIII was the last French monarch to die while reigning.