Marie Anne Lenormand and the Napoleonic Era

As Napoleon rose in power and married the now widowed Josephine, it wasn’t long before Marie Anne Lenormand became part of the ruling elite’s inner circle. She began delivering readings for generals, top officials and even the Royalty from other nations. Lenormand and Josephine would become very close, something that Napoleon had suspicions about. At one of her earliest readings for Josephine, Lenormand told her that she would sit upon the throne of kings, her destiny was grand, but that her husband would, has he reached the heights of power, betray her in his quest for even greater power.

(This article is actually a series of articles on Marie-Anne Lenormand. Before continuing here, you may wish to read the Three preceding articles: Indomitable Marie Anne Lenormand, then Lenormand: Early Years and Lenormand: Fortune Teller of Paris .)

Josephine and Napoleon with Tarot Card Reader

Napoleon & Josephine with the Card Reader by Josef Danhauser, 1841. The sheer number of European paintings, engraving, drawings with tarot readers attests to the popularity of cartomany during the era.

Napoleon seemed ambivalent about soothsayers, on the one hand seeming to tolerate them, on the other hand, he seemed to respect their possible abilities (based on the fact he had his own readings). Because Josephine held Lenormand in such esteem, Napoleon tolerated their relationship. It is recorded that, more than once, Lenormand angered Napoleon with her activities (one time for doing a reading for Josephine about Napoleon’s political activities in Italy, which he obviously took as a personal invasion of his privacy and meddling in State affairs). Some say Napoleon would have followed through with his threats to banishing and/or imprisoning Lenormand if not for the intervention of Josephine. At one point Josephine sent a warning to Lenormand about Napoleon’s threats, suggesting Lenormand flee the city. Lenormand responded in her typically fearless manner by sending a note back saying, "I have nothing to fear from Napoleon".

Another brush with the authorities would show just how brazen Lenormand could be. Summoned by Joseph Fouché, the powerful minister of police in Paris, she was questioned about positive readings she had given to the Bourbons, a royal family who wished the return of the monarchy (a Bourbon would eventually become King of France following the downfall of Napoleon). Fouché could charge her with treason and have Marie Anne imprisoned and/or executed. As Fouché presented his case against Lenormand, she appeared distracted with shuffling, cutting and examining her cartomancy cards … then mumbling, "knave of clubs!".

Finally an unamused Fouche said he intended to send Lenormand to prison for a long time.
"How do you know that!", snapped Lenormand.
"See here, the Knave of clubs, again!".
"Oh," taunted Fouché, "and the knave of clubs will set you free, will he? And who is the knave of clubs?".
You can almost see the smile on Marie Anne Lenormand’s face as she states, "The Duke of Rovigo, your successor in office".
Not long after this exchange, an enraged Napoleon had Fouche removed as Minister of Police after discovering that Fouche had been negotiating with the British behind Napoleon’s back. Fouché was replaced by Anne Jean Marie René Savary, First Duke of Rovigo.

Eventually, Marie Anne Lenormand’s predictions and comments did cause Napoleon to seek her imprisonment. In one account, Lenormand provides Josephine a date when Napoleon will betray her: December 16th 1809. This sends Napoleon into a rage. Nevertheless, on that date Napoleon Bonaparte divorces Empress Josephine by French Senate. Napoleon divorced his beloved Josephine because she failed to produce and heir. Napoleon felt, to preserve his legacy he required a son to take his place as Emperor. With the divorce Marie Anne Lenormand’s prophecy is fulfilled: Josephine would be betrayed by Napoleon’s ambitions. Also, Napoleon had build an empire that stretched from Egypt to Sweden, from Spain to Russia. It was an empire continually under assault from the surrounding Allied nations. The future held that the French Empire would eventually crumble. Lenormand’s political predictions began indicating this less than hopeful future for the French. It was too much for Napoleon. He decided Marie Anne Lenormand had gone too far. Lenormand was arrested and her place of business sealed.

Lenormand was kept in solitary confinement. It is said she pasted the time collaborating with spirits. Little known were her talents as a psychic medium. Eventually, Marie Anne Lenormand was questioned by the police and a judge. She skillfully defended herself and engaging her interrogators in a conversation about hermetic sciences.

Talented Tarot Reader Stella

When You Need Answers Give Talented Tarot Psychic Stella A Call, Today! At: 1-866-407-7164

Her defense seems to have been that was all she was doing was practicing those arts within hermetic sciences as a profession. What really mattered was who would be in power in France in the future. Lenormand said, "that is a problem which will be resolved on the 31st of March, 1814". Within 12 days, Lenormand was released. In her memoirs, Lenormand says her conversations with the police was recorded, if any cared to check her prediction.

All the police activity involving Marie Anne Lenormand only increased her fame. It made her shop the place to see and be seen. Napoleon’s fortunes had gone the opposite direction. His invasion of Russia turned to disaster. The allied nations (known as the Sixth Coalition), including Russia, England, Portugal, were at the gates of Paris. On March 31st, 1814, Paris fell and Napoleon was forced into exile.

Next, in this series of articles on Lenormand, we take a look at her final years as Europe’s best known psychic reader …

Would you like some predictions about your life? About love? Or, your career? Give Psychic Stella a call at 1-866-407-7164. You might also enjoy chatting with tarot specialists at, live tarot chat and readings 24/7.