One of Napoleon’s heirs just married an Austrian countess, who is descended from Napoleon’s second wife. Check out the lavish reception in the medieval palace where the French emperor himself once lived.

Prince Jean-Christophe Napoleon Bonaparte has married Countess Olympia von und zu Arco-Zinneberg in a lavish ceremony in France.

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Prince Jean-Christophe Napoleon Bonaparte has married Countess Olympia von und zu Arco-Zinneberg in a lavish ceremony in France.
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FRANCOIS GUILLOT / Getty Images

Prince Jean-Christophe Napoleon Bonaparte married Countess Olympia von und zu Arco-Zinnberg over the weekend, Harper’s Bazaar Australia reports.

The French prince is a descendant of Napoleon Bonaparte; Prince Jean-Christophe currently works as a private equity professional at The Blackstone Group in the United Kingdom, according to his LinkedIn profile.

The royal’s marriage to Countess Olympia has made headlines throughout the world, as it was revealed that his Austrian bride is the great-great-great niece of Archduchess Marie-Louise of Austria – also known as the second wife of Napoleon Bonaparte.

Still, Jean-Christophe stressed that this union is out of love, not history.

“It’s a story of love rather than a nod to history. When I met Olympia, I plunged into her eyes and not into her family tree,” Jean-Christophe said in an interview after their engagement, according to the Daily Mail.

Read more: Napoleon’s heir helped recover a $1.1 million family jewel after a thief stole it from his car without realizing its value

The pair met when Olympia was studying abroad in Paris during her college years at Yale. They became engaged in May 2019 and married at the Les Invalides in Paris – which also, ironically, happens to be the burial site of Napoleon.

Keep reading for a closer look into the lavish wedding and to learn more about the couple and their families’ history.


Prince Jean-Christophe, 33, and Countess Olympia, 31, married on October 19 in a lavish ceremony in Paris.

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FRANCOIS GUILLOT

Source: Vogue Australia


The wedding ceremony was held at Les Invalides in Paris and was attended by royal guests, including Princess Beatrice of York.

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FRANCOIS GUILLOT / Getty Images

Source: Harper’s Bazaar AU


The countess wore a gown by Oscar de la Renta with white pumps — and of course, a diamond tiara. Perhaps most notably, her engagement ring contains a 40-carat diamond from the crown of Eugenie de Montijo, Napoleon III’s wife and the last empress of France.

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FRANCOIS GUILLOT

Source: Harper’s Bazaar AU, Vanity Fair


The reception was held at the Château de Fontainebleau, a medieval palace that Napoleon had restored and refurbished during his time as Emperor.

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Mondadori Portfolio / Getty Images

Source: Instagram, Napoleon.org


Jean-Christophe is a descendant of military general Napoleon Bonaparte, the first emperor of France. Napoleon Bonaparte was known for implementing Napoleonic Code, also known as French Civil Code, and leading the Napoleonic Wars, which lasted from 1803 to 1815. In 1815, Bonaparte was forced to abdicate power, and was exiled to the island of Elba.

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DEA / G. DAGLI ORTI / Getty Images

French Civil Code “forbade privileges based on birth, allowed freedom of religion, and stated that government jobs must be given to the most qualified.”

The Napoleonic Wars allowed for the French empire to expand into other countries such as Italy, Sweden, and Spain.

Source: Biography.com


But a year later, in 1816, Napoleon fled back to Paris and returned to power — only to abdicate once more, after his defeat in the Battle of Waterloo. He was then exiled to the island of St. Helena, where he later died.

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Fine Art / Getty Images

Source: Biography.com


Countess Olympia, meanwhile, is the great-great-great niece of Archduchess Marie-Louise, the second wife of Napoleon Bonaparte. Marie-Louise, a member of the house of Hapsburg, was the eldest daughter of Francis I of Austria and a niece of Marie-Antoinette, the former queen of France.

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Hulton Archive / Getty Images

Source: Britannica, Vogue Australia


Historians generally agree that Napoleon Bonaparte and Marie-Louise were in a loveless marriage, in a political union that aimed to end conflicts between France and Austria.

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Print Collector / Getty Images

After Napoleon’s death, Marie-Louise married twice and is now buried in Vienna.

Source: Britannica, Vogue Australia


But now, nearly 200 years later, the House of Hapsburg and Imperial House of France are unified once more, this time in a decidedly loving ceremony. As Jean-Christophe said, the relationship between himself and his now-wife is “a story of love,” rather than a “nod to history.”

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FRANCOIS GUILLOT

That said, the French prince did admit that the two were later “able to smile at this historical coincidence.”

Source: Harper’s Bazaar AU, Daily Mail