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Godoy

Godoy

Godoy, Manuel de, 1767-1851, Spanish statesman. An army officer, he won the favor of Queen María Luisa and rose rapidly at the court of Charles IV. The king made him chief minister in 1792, and except for a brief eclipse from power (1798-1801), Godoy ruled continuously until 1808. Godoy joined (1793) the war of the First Coaltion (1793) against revolutionary France, but in 1795 he made peace (the second Treaty of Basel) and was awarded the title príncipe de la Paz [prince of the peace]. The following year he allied Spain with France (Treaty of San Ildefonso) in the war against England (1796-1802), which brought about great economic difficulties as English naval power increasingly cut off Spain from her Latin American colonies. After a brief eclipse, Godoy returned to power in 1801 and commanded the victorious Spanish army in the War of the Oranges against Portugal. His alliance with Napoleon I involved Spain in renewed war with England in 1804 and led to the Franco-Spanish defeat at Trafalgar (1805). The unpopularity of Godoy's corrupt government became acute after Godoy concluded the Convention of Fontainebleau (1807) with Napoleon (see Peninsular War). Prince Ferdinand (later Ferdinand VII) led the opposition and in 1808 was proclaimed king after Charles IV's first abdication. Godoy who was captured and mauled by a mob in Aranjuez, was rescued by the French and sent to France. He died in Paris.

(born May 12, 1767, Castuera, Spain—died Oct. 4, 1851, Paris, France) Spanish politician. He entered the royal bodyguard in 1784 and soon became the lover of Maria Luisa, wife of the future Charles IV. On Charles's accession (1788) Godoy continued as a royal favourite and was made duke de Alcudia and prime minister (1792–98, 1801–08). In 1795 Godoy negotiated a favourable peace after Spain's defeat by France and was awarded the h1 Prince of the Peace. He allied Spain with France against England, which brought a Spanish naval defeat at Cape St. Vincent (1797) and the disastrous defeat at the Battle of Trafalgar. In 1808, when it was learned that Napoleon planned to seize parts of Spain in the Peninsular Wars, the Spanish court tried to flee. Charles was forced to abdicate, and Godoy accompanied him into exile.

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(born May 12, 1767, Castuera, Spain—died Oct. 4, 1851, Paris, France) Spanish politician. He entered the royal bodyguard in 1784 and soon became the lover of Maria Luisa, wife of the future Charles IV. On Charles's accession (1788) Godoy continued as a royal favourite and was made duke de Alcudia and prime minister (1792–98, 1801–08). In 1795 Godoy negotiated a favourable peace after Spain's defeat by France and was awarded the h1 Prince of the Peace. He allied Spain with France against England, which brought a Spanish naval defeat at Cape St. Vincent (1797) and the disastrous defeat at the Battle of Trafalgar. In 1808, when it was learned that Napoleon planned to seize parts of Spain in the Peninsular Wars, the Spanish court tried to flee. Charles was forced to abdicate, and Godoy accompanied him into exile.

Learn more about Godoy, Manuel de with a free trial on Britannica.com.

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