Charles III, Duke of Parma - Biography - Restoration and Reign

Restoration and Reign

Charles II only reigned for a few months in Parma. In March 1848 revolution broke out in Parma supported by King Charles Albert of Sardinia. Ferdinando Carlo escaped from Parma, but was taken prisoner at Cremona. He remained a prisoner at Milan for several months until the British government negotiated his release. After a brief sojourn on the island of Malta, he travelled to Naples and then Livorno where he was joined by his wife Louise Marie who had just given birth to their first son. Then the family sought refuge in England and Scotland.

In August 1848 the Austrian army entered Parma, and officially restored Charles II. Ferdinando Carlo and his family, however, remained in England, since hostilities continued between the Austrian and Piedmontese armies. For several years Charles II had considered abdicating in favour of Ferdinando Carlo, but he delayed in the hope that when he did so things would be more secure for his son.

On 24 March 1849 the abdication of Charles II was announced. Ferdinando Carlo, still living in England, succeeded to the title of Duke of Parma, Piacenza, and the Annexed States taking the name Charles III. On 18 May 1849 he re-entered Parma, but left again two days later. He did not take over the administration of the duchy until 25 August.

On the evening of 26 March 1854 Charles was taking a walk in the streets of Parma. He was stabbed by an assailant, the anarchist Antonio Carra, who escaped. He was taken to the Palazzo di Riserva where he died the following evening.

Charles' body was buried in the Cappella della Macchia near Viareggio. His heart was placed in an urn in the crypt of the Sanctuary of Santa Maria della Steccata in Parma.

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