In the play "Romeo and Juliet- by William Shakespeare, Juliet asks the question, "What's in a name?- In an attempt to rationalize her love for her father's archenemy's son, she discredits the power that a name can hold. For complete proof of that power, take a look at the life of Louis Napoleon Bonaparte, a man whose fate was decided by his name. A name that from an early age haunted him but as he grew he learned how to take advantage of it. This is the story of a man who proves that without his name he certainly would not "smell as sweet."" .
Born on April 20, 1808 in Paris, Charles Louis Napoleon Bonaparte was a very powerful young man. His father, Louis Bonaparte, was the king of Holland (1806-1810) and his uncle, his father's brother, was the Emperor Napoleon I of France. However, what began as a seemingly perfect life, would be completely turned upside-down in a matter of years. When his uncle was banished from France in 1814, his whole family was forced out with him. Louis received his schooling in both Switzerland and Bavaria. It was his mother who taught her son about the glories of the great Napoleon. These stories would help to shape his dreams for the future. .
When he was old enough, Louis joined the Swiss Army and eventually became a captain. Still striving to live up to the Napoleonic legend, he joined in revolts in Italy in 1830-1831. Finally in 1836, he started to direct his attention towards France. In that year he tried to overthrow the government of the current French ruler, Louis Phillipe. He was unsuccessful and was exiled to the United States. After returning to Switzerland, he once again attempted to overthrow Phillipe and once again was unsuccessful. This time he was tried for treason and sentenced to life imprisonment. While in prison he began to write pamphlets and essays planning out his platform. Six years later, he managed to escape to England and he would not return for another two years.