Biography of Jean-Marie René duque de Rovigo Savary (1776-1833)

French General, born in Marcq (Argonne) April 26, 1776 and died in Paris on June 2, 1833.

Son of a retired officer who had the cross of San Luis, studied at Metz, and the 1 October 1790 enlisted in a Cavalry Regiment. Suppressed a mutiny in Nancy, in 1795 is Captain, and in 1797 Squadron Chief.Affable, disciplined, obedient, according to some subservient, participates in the battle of Marengo on 14 June 1800, after which Bonaparte makes it its support of field. Napoleon entrusted very delicate missions, police character, in 1800, in 1803 against the chouans, which uses all kinds of drafts, including the launch large scale of counterfeit banknotes, English and Russian. In such actions the year 1804 mark the top, odious, of his career. Bonaparte receives the complaint that the Duke of Enghien, which is located in Baden, i.e. not on French territory, conspires against his regime. Napoleon ordered that it kidnapped, tried sumarisimamente, and executed. On March 20, 1804, in the presence of Savary, Enghien is sentenced to death; but he/she asked to be received by Bonaparte. Savary, rather than give effect to the request, runs to the Duke to the wee hours. His responsibility for the crime is undeniable, but then say that everything had been due to the perfidious advice of Talleyrand.

Napoleon appointed him general of division on 1 February 1805. Law enforcement and espionage duties continued: while he/she was serving a mission near Alejandro I, could learn the device of the austro-rusas forces, which won him being named Grand Officer of the Legion of Honor. In 1806 it had strictly military functions, distinguishing itself at Ostrolenka and Friedland.

Duke of Rovigo, in February 1808, Napoleon sent him to Spain, where he/she managed the Kings and Fernando did the famous trip to Bayona, which cost them the Crown. When Murat had to retire, was appointed head of the French troops, reaching Madrid in such a condition on June 15 of 1808.Inmediatamente his judgment on the Spanish situation reveals his extraordinary talent: it is not, he/she tells the Emperor, fighting here and there some protest or uprising, but that the French army you will have to fight two wars: a classic, against another army; and other style of bandits, against the population. Patrolling the country won't work more than to extend the insurrection. It is necessary that the Emperor is aware of the gravity of the situation, and to apply to solve it all means that are necessary.In October 1808 he/she moved to Germany, then to Holland, with the emperor. An absurd 1809 Spanish News says that it has been imprisoned in Mexico. In fact, the 3 June 1810 Napoleon named him successor of Fouché in the Ministry of police. Fouché him painted as a perfect idiot, then that certainly Savary was not, but yes exerted relentless and brutal repression not allowed, however, provide for the general conspiracy Malet in 1812. This issue earned him jail on October 23, 1812. Released immediately, Napoleon appointed him member of the Regency Council. After the abdication of Napoleon withdrew to his castle of Nainville, where his wife met him Faudoas-Barbaso Marie-Crarlotte, with their seven children. He/She conspired to make Napoleon returned to France, but did not regain the Ministry during the rule of the hundred days.

After Waterloo, the British took him prisoner to Malta, since September 18, 1815 to April 8, 1816. After it appears in Smyrna, and then Austria, New Smyrna, London and Hamburg, where arrived in 1819. He/She returned to France, to surrender as a prisoner, but left him in freedom. Luis XVIII did not receive it. He/She went to Rome, and in 1828 published a part of his memoirs, written not by himself, but with his notes (2nd Edition in 1829).In 1830 he/she offered to Luis Felipe, rejoining the army in 1831, being sent to Algeria. The climate not he/she sat, so in March of 1833 had to return to France.


Archivo Histórico Nacional. State, file 14.

SEPULVEDA, Christovam Aires de Magalhães: Dicionário Bibliográfico da Guerra Peninsular. Coimbra, 1924. 4 volumes in 2 vols.

TULARD, Jean (ed.): Dictionnaire Napoléon. Paris, 1987.