Leopold II of Belgium

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King Leopold II (April 9, 1835December 17, 1909) succeeded his father, Leopold I of Belgium, to the Belgian throne in 1865 as Leopold II, King of the Belgians, and remained king until his death.

Quotes[edit]

  • The Congo Free State is unique in its kind. It has nothing to hide and no secrets and is not beholden to anyone except its founder.
Clive Foss, The Tyrants: 2500 Years of Absolute Power and Corruption, London: Quercus Publishing, 2006, ISBN 1905204965
  • I do not want to miss a good chance of getting us a slice of this magnificent African cake.
Thomas Pakenham, The Scramble for Africa: White Man's Conquest of the Dark Continent From 1876 to 1912, New York: Avon Books, 1992, 22.
  • A People which is content with its homeland and which shreds at even the shadow of a conflict lacks the characteristics of a superior race.
Congo: White King, Red Rubber, Black Death (BBC Documentary based on Adam Hochschild's 'King Leopold's Ghost')
  • Santo Tomas was based on emigration and was therefore bound to fail, Belgians do not emigrate.
Tu ne verras pas Verapaz? (Documentary about former Belgian colony in Santo Tomas de Castilla, Guatemala.)
  • Young trees need stakes to support them, but the stakes must be removed once the trees begin to grow, precisely so not to hinder their growth.
Leopold II, King of the Belgians in a letter to his minister, Charles Woeste, dated June 9, 1901.
  • Do I still need to tell you that I am not guided by selfish motives? No gentlemen, although Belgium is small, it is happy and content with its fate. I have no ambition other than to serve it. In this century, our civilized society imparts unprecedented values to barbarian communities in other parts of the world.
Leopold II, King of the Belgians in a speech at the Brussels Geographic Conference on September 12, 1876. Quoted from the book "Zaïre, Ketens van Koper (translated: Zaire, Chains of Copper)" Chapter 2: From Leopold II to Bwana Kitoko, page 16. Leuven, Kritak Fonds, 1978. ISBN 9063030185
  • I have only one goal and one desire, namely to give myself a practical instruction, to get to know the world and its inhabitants. There will come times when this knowledge will be of use to me.
Prince Leopold II on his second wedding trip in a letter to his father Leopold I of Belgium in 1854.
  • If God gives me a long life and allows me to carry out my task, then Brussels will become a city of exceptional category.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094
  • Trading posts and colonies, gentlemen, have not only strengthened the commercial positions of the peoples concerned; these nations owe their greatness to these institutions.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Prince Leopold II in his function of Senator in the Senate of Belgium.
  • I sleep poorly. This long abstinence is destroying me. My nature needs frequent contacts with the beautiful gender. I don't understand how priests can live like this.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Prince Leopold II in a letter to his father Leopold I on may 1861 when recovering from a cold on vacation in villa Solitude in Austria complaining how he misses female company.
  • It is very curious to see how in China and Morocco the vanquished pay for the costs of the expedition that crushed them.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Prince Leopold II in a travel note after reading in the Spanish Archive "Archivo General de Indias" in Sevilla in 1862.
  • In the Far East, compulsory labor can work wonders, just like here... If only Belgium wanted to see that. This could create "inexhaustible resources and exploiting the soil and peoples of the Far East can only be brought to civilization and well-being in this way."

Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Prince Leopold II in a 1863 travel note in admiration for Ferdinand de Lesseps when visiting Egypt and the digging sites of the Suez Canal by tens of thousands of cheap workers.
  • India has never cost England one centime. it paid back What it cost. India provides a livelihood for all benjamins of English families.

Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Prince Leopold II In Singapore in a letter to his father King Leopold I expressing admiration for British colonialism.
  • Excuse me, dear niece, for this letter, which is really just a health bulletin. Especially concerned with a health so dear to me, I am almost unable to speak of anything else.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 King Leopold II In a letter to his niece Queen Victoria about the critical condition of his sick son Prince Leopold, Duke of Brabant.
  • It is not the first time that Belgium has had to undergo a dangerous ordeal. But never has the situation been more serious than today! … Freedom, honor, the very existence of the fatherland is at stake.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 King Leopold II In a 1870 speech to the Belgian Parliament as a reaction to the growing threat of war between Prussia and France.
  • You speak of my popularity, but it is out of the question now, and in doing so, my dear Prime Minister, I declare that I will not doubt between my duty and my love: a popularity based on deceiving a country about its true interests would weigh heavily on my conscience and that is a burden that I do not want to bear.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Leopold II in a 1870 letter to Belgian Prime Minister d'Anethan after his negative reaction to Leopold's propositions to mandate Conscription and increased Military spending in the context of the Franco-Prussian war.
  • I am generous and about to make a multi-million dollar sacrifice to beautify my capital. It will cost me three to four years of wages, but I wish my life here on earth to leave many traces
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Leopold II in 1865 when accending to the throne.
  • These expeditions respond to an extraordinarily civilizing Christian idea: to abolish slavery in Africa, to dispel the darkness that still reigns in part of the world, to get to know the resources that seem gigantic, in short, pouring out the treasures of civilization, that's it. purpose of this modern crusade worthy of our era.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Leopold II in a note to himself when reading Livingstone's reports.
  • We must ensure that it is not too clear that the Association of Congo and the African Association are two different businesses. The public doesn't understand that. It will assume that there are two phases, the first of which is no longer relevant.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Leopold II in a letter to one of his staff members.
  • It is not about Belgian colonies. It is about establishing a new state that is as large as possible and about its governance. It should be clear that in this project there can be no question of granting the Negroes the slightest form of political power. That would be ridiculous. The whites, who lead the posts, have all the power.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Leopold II in his instructions to Henry Morton Stanley just before the departure of Stanley's first expidiotion commissioned by himself.
  • We must put an end to anarchy and its continuing preaching.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Leopold II in 1885 about the protests and Social unrest due to extreme poverty among the many farmers in Belgium.

External links[edit]

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