Toussaint l’Ouverture

(c. 1743–1803)
   Known originally as François-Dominique Toussaint, Toussaint l’Ouverture was a self-educated former slave who became one of the leaders of the revolt in St. Domingue that overthrew French rule and created the independent nation of Haiti. As the French Revolution unfolded in Europe, slaves in the north of St. Domingue staged their own rebellion in 1791 in a bid to gain their freedom. Although initially uncommitted, Toussaint l’Ouverture joined the rebels when the white planters refused to honor earlier promises to grant voting rights and citizenship to all free men regardless of color. After rising quickly through the ranks of the rebel army and briefly allying himself with invading Spanish forces from the neighboring colony of Santo Domingo, in 1794 l’Ouverture declared himself a French patriot following the decision in Paris to grant freedom to all slaves who fought on behalf of the Revolution.
   From 1794 to 1801, Toussaint l’Ouverture used his forces to end foreign military intervention and capture Santo Domingo on behalf of the French Republic. Shortly thereafter he drafted a new constitution for the colony, which formally abolished slavery and named him governor-general for life. Because these actions threatened Napoleon Bonaparte ’ s plans to restore St. Domingue to its former status as a profitable plantation colony, the newly crowned French emperor ignored Toussaint l’Ouverture’s claims of continued allegiance and launched an invasion in 1802 to restore French authority on the island. After several months of fighting, Toussaint l’Ouverture signed a truce in May 1802 and retired to his farm. Three weeks later he was arrested and deported to France where he died in prison. Less than a year later, his followers defeated the French and declared independence.
   See also <>; <>.
    Alexis, Stephen. Black Liberator: The Life of Toussaint L’Ouverture . New York: Macmillan, 1949;
    James, C.L.R. The Black Jacobins: Toussaint L’Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution . London: Allison & Busby, 1980;
    Moran, Charles. Black Triumvirate: A Study of L’Ouverture , Dessalines, Christophe . New York: Exposition Books, 1957;
    Ros, Martin. Night of Fire: The Black Napoleon and the Battle for Haiti . New York: Sarpedon, 1994.

Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Toussaint L'Ouverture — Toussaint Louverture Toussaint Louverture Naissance 20 mai 1746 habitation du Comte de Bréda, près du Cap Français (Saint Domingue) Décès 7 avril …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Toussaint L'Ouverture — [to͞o san lo͞o ver tür′] (born Pierre François Dominique Toussaint) 1743? 1803; Haitian liberator & general …   English World dictionary

  • Toussaint l'Ouverture — (spr. tußäng luwärtǖr), Obergeneral der Neger auf Haïti, geb. 1743 als Sklavenkind, gest. 27. Juli 1803, erwarb sich als Kutscher eines Plantagenaufsehers durch Benutzung von dessen Bibliothek eine gewisse Bildung. Als im August 1791 die erste… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Toussaint l'Ouverture — (spr. tußäng luwärtühr), ein Neger auf Haïti, geb. 1743, stieg 1797 bis zum Obergeneral aller Truppen auf San Domingo, ließ sich 1799 zum Präsidenten erheben, wurde 1801 vom franz. General Leclerc geschlagen und nach seiner Unterwerfung auf die… …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Toussaint l'Ouverture — (Tussäng Luwertühr), geb. 1745 als Negersclave unweit Cap François auf Haiti, gab sich durch die Bibliothek seines Herrn einige Bildung, rettete diesen 1791 bei dem Negeraufstande auf das amerikan. Festland, war 1793 schon einer der ersten… …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • Toussaint L'Ouverture — François Dominique Toussaint Louverture François Dominique Toussaint L’Ouverture (der den Weg öffnet; die Schreibweise Louverture ist auch gebräuchlich) (* um 1743 in Cap Haïtien; † 7. April 1803 in Château de Joux), war haitianischer… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Toussaint L'Ouverture — François Dominique Toussaint L Ouverture, (conocido también como Toussaint Bréda ó Toussaint Louverture) (1743? 7 de abril, 1803) fue uno de los líderes de la Revolución haitiana. Gobernador de la colonia francesa de Saint Domingue de 1798 hasta… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Toussaint L'Ouverture — Fr. /tooh saonn looh verdd tyuurdd /, (Francis Dominique Toussaint) 1743 1803, Haitian military and political leader. * * * …   Universalium

  • Toussaint L'Ouverture — Tous•saint L Ou•ver•ture fr. [[t]tuˈsɛ̃ lu vɛrˈtür[/t]] n. big (Francis Dominique Toussaint) 1743–1803, Haitian military and political leader …   From formal English to slang

  • Toussaint L'Ouverture — /tusæ̃ luvɛəˈtyə/ (say toohsan loohvair toohuh) noun (Francis Dominique Toussaint), 1743–1803, Haitian military and political leader; one of the liberators of Haiti …   Australian English dictionary

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