Alexandru Ion Cuza
Cuza, Alexandru Ion
Born Mar. 8 (20), 1820, in Galati; died May 3 (15), 1873, in Heidelberg. Ruler of the United Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia in 1859-62 and of Rumania in 1862-66.
The son of a Moldavian boyar, Cuza studied in Paris, Pavia, and Bologna. For his participation in the revolutionary movement of 1848, he was banished from Moldavia. He returned in 1850. An active supporter of the unification of the principalities, Cuza was elected prince of Moldavia on Jan. 5, 1859, and prince of Wallachia on Jan. 24, 1859, thus effecting a personal union. During Cuza’s reign the principalities were formally united into a single Rumanian state in 1862. In February 1866, Cuza abdicated under pressure from the “monstrous coalition” of reactionary boyars who opposed him.