With the demise of the Second French Empire, the Prince Imperial, Napoléon Bonaparte, only son of Napoleon III, was exiled to the United Kingdom. He studied in the Royal Military Academy and subsequently became a lieutenant and served in the Zulu War in 1879.
He was ambushed by 40 Zulu Warriors in 1st June and, although he tried to resist, he succumbed from several wounds inflicted by assegais. After death the Prince was ritually disemboweled by one Hlabanatunga, a common Zulu practice to prevent his spirit seeking revenge on his killers in the afterlife.
His body returned afterwards to the United Kingdom, being moved to the Imperial Crypt at Saint Michael’s Abbey, Farnborough, Hampshire, at the side of his father.
The Zulus later claimed that they would not have killed him if they had known who he was.
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