The future destiny of the child is always the work of the Mother

Letizia Ramolino, Mother of Napoleon Bonaparte
The Emperor Napoleon

Maria Letizia Buonaparte was the mother of Napoleon Bonaparte. She was described as a harsh mother, and had a very down-to-earth view of most things. In 1785, when she was 35, her husband died of cancer. In 1793, she left Corsica and resettled with her children in Marseilles in France, where her son Napoleon had a successful military career and eventually took power. In 1804, her son Napoleon declared himself Emperor. She did not attend the Imperial court. She did not approve of her son's marriage to the extravagant Joséphine de Beauharnais in 1796. But Napoleon loved Joséphine very much. But eventually, Napoleon divorced Joséphine in 1809. In 1814, his mother shared Napoleon's exile in Elba, where he treated her fondly.

The dominant influence of Napoleon's childhood was his mother, whose firm discipline restrained a rambunctious child. Later in life Napoleon stated, "The future destiny of the child is always the work of the mother."