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King Leopold I of Belgium
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Monarch
    (December 16, 1790-December 10, 1865)
    Born in Coburg, Germany
    First king of Belgium (1831-65)
    At age twelve, he was appointed a major-general in a Russian guards regiment.
    He was offered the Greek throne despite having no connection to the country (1830).
    He fathered two children out of wedlock.
    He was uncle to both Queen Victoria and her husband, Prince Albert.
    He distinguished himself as a cavalry officer in the Napoleonic wars.
    His first wife, King George IV’s daughter Charlotte, died at age 21 of complications after giving birth to a stillborn son (1817).
    His second wife, Louise d’Orleans, daughter of King Louis Philippe, also died young, succumbing to tuberculosis at age 38 (1850).
    He turned down the Greek throne, saying he did not want to be imposed on the country by foreign powers.

Credit: C. Fishel


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