Napoleon I of France

Napoleon I of France

Overview
Napoleon Bonaparte ( napoleɔ̃ bɔnɑpaʁt) (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a French military and political leader during the latter stages of the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

.

As Napoleon I, he was Emperor of the French
Emperor of the French
The Emperor of the French was the title used by the Bonaparte Dynasty starting when Napoleon Bonaparte was given the title Emperor on 18 May 1804 by the French Senate and was crowned emperor of the French on 02 December 1804 at the cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris, in Paris with the Crown of...

 from 1804 to 1815. His legal reform, the Napoleonic Code
Napoleonic code
The Napoleonic Code — or Code Napoléon — is the French civil code, established under Napoléon I in 1804. The code forbade privileges based on birth, allowed freedom of religion, and specified that government jobs go to the most qualified...

, has been a major influence on many civil law
Civil law (legal system)
Civil law is a legal system inspired by Roman law and whose primary feature is that laws are codified into collections, as compared to common law systems that gives great precedential weight to common law on the principle that it is unfair to treat similar facts differently on different...

 jurisdictions worldwide, but he is best remembered for his role in the wars led against France by a series of coalitions, the so-called Napoleonic Wars
Napoleonic Wars
The Napoleonic Wars were a series of wars declared against Napoleon's French Empire by opposing coalitions that ran from 1803 to 1815. As a continuation of the wars sparked by the French Revolution of 1789, they revolutionised European armies and played out on an unprecedented scale, mainly due to...

.
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Timeline

1769   Napoleon Bonaparte is born in Ajaccio, Corsica

1785   Napoleon graduates from Ecole Militaire with the rank of second lieutenant in the artillery

1793   For his brilliant tactical command at an internal French battle at Toulon, Napoleon receives the new rank of brigadier general

1795   General Napoleon Bonaparte first rises to national prominence being named to defend the French National Convention against armed counter-revolutionary rioters threatening the three year old revolutionary government.

1795   Napoleon Bonaparte first rises to national prominence with a "Whiff of Grapeshot", using cannon to suppress armed counter-revolutionary rioters threatening the French Legislature (National Convention).

1796   Napoléon Bonaparte marries his first wife, Joséphine de Beauharnais.

1796   The Armistice of Cherasco is signed by Napoleon Bonaparte and Vittorio Amedeo III, the King of Sardinia, expanding French territory along the Mediterranean coast.

1796   First Coalition: Napoleon I of France wins a decisive victory against Austrian forces at Lodi bridge over the Adda River in Italy. The Austrians lose some 2,000 men.

1796   First Coalition: Napoleon enters Milan in triumph.

1797   First Coalition: Napoleon I of France conquers Venice.

 
Encyclopedia
Napoleon Bonaparte ( napoleɔ̃ bɔnɑpaʁt) (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a French military and political leader during the latter stages of the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

.

As Napoleon I, he was Emperor of the French
Emperor of the French
The Emperor of the French was the title used by the Bonaparte Dynasty starting when Napoleon Bonaparte was given the title Emperor on 18 May 1804 by the French Senate and was crowned emperor of the French on 02 December 1804 at the cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris, in Paris with the Crown of...

 from 1804 to 1815. His legal reform, the Napoleonic Code
Napoleonic code
The Napoleonic Code — or Code Napoléon — is the French civil code, established under Napoléon I in 1804. The code forbade privileges based on birth, allowed freedom of religion, and specified that government jobs go to the most qualified...

, has been a major influence on many civil law
Civil law (legal system)
Civil law is a legal system inspired by Roman law and whose primary feature is that laws are codified into collections, as compared to common law systems that gives great precedential weight to common law on the principle that it is unfair to treat similar facts differently on different...

 jurisdictions worldwide, but he is best remembered for his role in the wars led against France by a series of coalitions, the so-called Napoleonic Wars
Napoleonic Wars
The Napoleonic Wars were a series of wars declared against Napoleon's French Empire by opposing coalitions that ran from 1803 to 1815. As a continuation of the wars sparked by the French Revolution of 1789, they revolutionised European armies and played out on an unprecedented scale, mainly due to...

. He established hegemony over most of continental Europe and sought to spread the ideals of the French Revolution, while consolidating an imperial monarchy
First French Empire
The First French Empire , also known as the Greater French Empire or Napoleonic Empire, was the empire of Napoleon I of France...

 which restored aspects of the deposed ancien régime
Ancien Régime in France
The Ancien Régime refers primarily to the aristocratic, social and political system established in France from the 15th century to the 18th century under the late Valois and Bourbon dynasties...

. Due to his success in these wars, often against numerically superior enemies, he is generally regarded as one of the greatest military commanders of all time.

Napoleon was born in Corsica
Corsica
Corsica is an island in the Mediterranean Sea. It is located west of Italy, southeast of the French mainland, and north of the island of Sardinia....

 to parents of noble Genoese
Nobility of Italy
The Nobility of Italy consisted of individuals and their families of Italy recognized by sovereigns, such as the Holy Roman Emperor, the Holy See, Kings of Italy or certain other Italian kings and sovereigns as members of a class of persons officially enjoying hereditary privileges which...

 ancestry and trained as an artillery officer in mainland France. He rose to prominence under the French First Republic
French First Republic
The French First Republic was founded on 22 September 1792, by the newly established National Convention. The First Republic lasted until the declaration of the First French Empire in 1804 under Napoleon I...

 and led successful campaigns against the First
First Coalition
The War of the First Coalition was the first major effort of multiple European monarchies to contain Revolutionary France. France declared war on the Habsburg monarchy of Austria on 20 April 1792, and the Kingdom of Prussia joined the Austrian side a few weeks later.These powers initiated a series...

 and Second
War of the Second Coalition
The "Second Coalition" was the second attempt by European monarchs, led by the Habsburg Monarchy of Austria and the Russian Empire, to contain or eliminate Revolutionary France. They formed a new alliance and attempted to roll back France's previous military conquests...

 Coalitions arrayed against France. In 1799, he staged a coup d'état
18 Brumaire
The coup of 18 Brumaire was the coup d'état by which General Napoleon Bonaparte overthrew the French Directory, replacing it with the French Consulate...

 and installed himself as First Consul; five years later the French Senate proclaimed him emperor. In the first decade of the 19th century, the French Empire
First French Empire
The First French Empire , also known as the Greater French Empire or Napoleonic Empire, was the empire of Napoleon I of France...

 under Napoleon engaged in a series of conflicts—the Napoleonic Wars—involving every major European power. After a streak of victories, France secured a dominant position in continental Europe, and Napoleon maintained the French sphere of influence
Sphere of influence
In the field of international relations, a sphere of influence is a spatial region or conceptual division over which a state or organization has significant cultural, economic, military or political influence....

 through the formation of extensive alliances and the appointment of friends and family members to rule other European countries as French client state
Client state
Client state is one of several terms used to describe the economic, political and/or military subordination of one state to a more powerful state in international affairs...

s. Napoleon's campaigns are studied at military academies throughout much of the world.

The fight against the guerilla in Spain
Peninsular War
The Peninsular War was a war between France and the allied powers of Spain, the United Kingdom, and Portugal for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars. The war began when French and Spanish armies crossed Spain and invaded Portugal in 1807. Then, in 1808, France turned on its...

 and 1812 French invasion of Russia
French invasion of Russia
The French invasion of Russia of 1812 was a turning point in the Napoleonic Wars. It reduced the French and allied invasion forces to a tiny fraction of their initial strength and triggered a major shift in European politics as it dramatically weakened French hegemony in Europe...

 marked turning points in Napoleon's fortunes. His Grande Armée was badly damaged in the campaign and never fully recovered. In 1813, the Sixth Coalition defeated his forces at Leipzig
Battle of Leipzig
The Battle of Leipzig or Battle of the Nations, on 16–19 October 1813, was fought by the coalition armies of Russia, Prussia, Austria and Sweden against the French army of Napoleon. Napoleon's army also contained Polish and Italian troops as well as Germans from the Confederation of the Rhine...

; the following year the Coalition invaded France, forced Napoleon to abdicate and exiled him to the island of Elba
Elba
Elba is a Mediterranean island in Tuscany, Italy, from the coastal town of Piombino. The largest island of the Tuscan Archipelago, Elba is also part of the National Park of the Tuscan Archipelago and the third largest island in Italy after Sicily and Sardinia...

. Less than a year later, he escaped Elba and returned to power, but was defeated at the Battle of Waterloo
Battle of Waterloo
The Battle of Waterloo was fought on Sunday 18 June 1815 near Waterloo in present-day Belgium, then part of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands...

 in June 1815. Napoleon spent the last six years of his life in confinement by the British on the island of Saint Helena
Saint Helena
Saint Helena , named after St Helena of Constantinople, is an island of volcanic origin in the South Atlantic Ocean. It is part of the British overseas territory of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha which also includes Ascension Island and the islands of Tristan da Cunha...

. An autopsy concluded he died of stomach cancer
Stomach cancer
Gastric cancer, commonly referred to as stomach cancer, can develop in any part of the stomach and may spread throughout the stomach and to other organs; particularly the esophagus, lungs, lymph nodes, and the liver...

, although this claim has sparked significant debate, as some scholars have held that he was a victim of arsenic
Arsenic
Arsenic is a chemical element with the symbol As, atomic number 33 and relative atomic mass 74.92. Arsenic occurs in many minerals, usually in conjunction with sulfur and metals, and also as a pure elemental crystal. It was first documented by Albertus Magnus in 1250.Arsenic is a metalloid...

 poisoning.

Origins and education


Napoleon Bonaparte was born the second of eight children in his family's ancestral home Casa Buonaparte
Casa Buonaparte
Casa Buonaparte is the ancestral home of the Bonaparte family. It is located on the Rue Saint-Charles in Ajaccio on the island of Corsica. The house was almost continuously owned by members of the family from 1682 to 1923....

, located in the town of Ajaccio
Ajaccio
Ajaccio , is a commune on the island of Corsica in France. It is the capital and largest city of the region of Corsica and the prefecture of the department of Corse-du-Sud....

, Corsica. He was born on 15 August 1769, one year after Corsica was transferred to France by the Republic of Genoa
Republic of Genoa
The Most Serene Republic of Genoa |Ligurian]]: Repúbrica de Zêna) was an independent state from 1005 to 1797 in Liguria on the northwestern Italian coast, as well as Corsica from 1347 to 1768, and numerous other territories throughout the Mediterranean....

. He was christened Napoleone di Buonaparte, probably acquiring his first name from an uncle (though an older brother, who did not survive infancy, was also named Napoleone
Necronym
A necronym, from the Greek words νεκρός and ὀνομα , is a reference to, or name of, a person who has died. Many cultures have taboos and traditions associated with referring to such a person...

). He was called by this name until his twenties, when he adopted the more French-sounding Napoléon Bonaparte.
The Corsican Buonapartes originated from minor Italian nobility
Nobility of Italy
The Nobility of Italy consisted of individuals and their families of Italy recognized by sovereigns, such as the Holy Roman Emperor, the Holy See, Kings of Italy or certain other Italian kings and sovereigns as members of a class of persons officially enjoying hereditary privileges which...

 of Lombard
Lombards
The Lombards , also referred to as Longobards, were a Germanic tribe of Scandinavian origin, who from 568 to 774 ruled a Kingdom in Italy...

 origin, who had come to Corsica from Liguria
Liguria
Liguria is a coastal region of north-western Italy, the third smallest of the Italian regions. Its capital is Genoa. It is a popular region with tourists for its beautiful beaches, picturesque little towns, and good food.-Geography:...

 in the 16th century. His father Nobile Carlo Buonaparte
Carlo Buonaparte
Carlo Maria Buonaparte was a Corsican lawyer and politician who briefly served as a personal assistant of the revolutionary leader Pasquale Paoli and eventually rose to become Corsica's representative to the court of Louis XVI...

, an attorney, was named Corsica's representative to the court of Louis XVI
Louis XVI of France
Louis XVI was a Bourbon monarch who ruled as King of France and Navarre until 1791, and then as King of the French from 1791 to 1792, before being executed in 1793....

 in 1777. The dominant influence of Napoleon's childhood was his mother, Letizia Ramolino
Letizia Ramolino
Nobile Maria Letizia Buonaparte née Ramolino was the mother of Napoleon I of France....

, whose firm discipline restrained a rambunctious child. He had an elder brother, Joseph
Joseph Bonaparte
Joseph-Napoléon Bonaparte was the elder brother of Napoleon Bonaparte, who made him King of Naples and Sicily , and later King of Spain...

; and younger siblings Lucien
Lucien Bonaparte
Lucien Bonaparte, Prince Français, 1st Prince of Canino and Musignano , born Luciano Buonaparte, was the third surviving son of Carlo Buonaparte and his wife Letizia Ramolino....

, Elisa
Elisa Bonaparte
Maria Anna Elisa Bonaparte Baciocchi Levoy, Princesse Française, Duchess of Lucca and Princess of Piombino, Grand Duchess of Tuscany, Countess of Compignano was the fourth surviving child and eldest surviving daughter of Carlo Buonaparte and Letizia Ramolino, making her the younger sister of...

, Louis
Louis Bonaparte
Louis Napoléon Bonaparte, Prince Français, Comte de Saint-Leu , King of Holland , was the fifth surviving child and the fourth surviving son of Carlo Buonaparte and Letizia Ramolino...

, Pauline
Pauline Bonaparte
Pauline Bonaparte was the first sovereign Duchess of Guastalla, an imperial French Princess and the Princess consort of Sulmona and Rossano. She was the sixth child of Letizia Ramolino and Carlo Buonaparte, Corsica's representative to the court of King Louis XVI of France. Her elder brother,...

, Caroline
Caroline Bonaparte
Maria Annunziata Carolina Murat , better known as Caroline Bonaparte, was the seventh surviving child and third surviving daughter of Carlo Buonaparte and Letizia Ramolino and a younger sister of Napoleon I of France...

 and Jérôme
Jérôme Bonaparte
Jérôme-Napoléon Bonaparte, French Prince, King of Westphalia, 1st Prince of Montfort was the youngest brother of Napoleon, who made him king of Westphalia...

. There were also two other children, a boy and girl, who were born before Joseph but died in infancy. Napoleon was baptised as a Catholic just before his second birthday, on 21 July 1771 at Ajaccio Cathedral
Ajaccio Cathedral
Ajaccio Cathedral is a Roman Catholic cathedral located in Ajaccio, Corsica. It is the seat of the Bishop of Ajaccio....

.

Napoleon's noble, moderately affluent background and family connections afforded him greater opportunities to study than were available to a typical Corsican of the time. In January 1779, Napoleon was enrolled at a religious school in Autun
Autun
Autun is a commune in the Saône-et-Loire department in Burgundy in eastern France. It was founded during the early Roman Empire as Augustodunum. Autun marks the easternmost extent of the Umayyad campaign in Europe.-Early history:...

, mainland France, to learn French, and in May he was admitted to a military academy
Military academy
A military academy or service academy is an educational institution which prepares candidates for service in the officer corps of the army, the navy, air force or coast guard, which normally provides education in a service environment, the exact definition depending on the country concerned.Three...

 at Brienne-le-Château
Brienne-le-Château
Brienne-le-Château is a commune in the Aube department in north-central France. It is located from the right bank of the Aube River and 26 m. northeast of Troyes....

. He spoke with a marked Corsican accent and never learned to spell properly. Napoleon was teased by other students for his accent and applied himself to reading. An examiner observed that Napoleon "has always been distinguished for his application in mathematics. He is fairly well acquainted with history and geography...This boy would make an excellent sailor." On completion of his studies at Brienne in 1784, Napoleon was admitted to the elite École Militaire
École Militaire
The École Militaire is a vast complex of buildings housing various military training facilities located in the 7th arrondissement of Paris, France, southeast of the Champ de Mars....

 in Paris; this ended his naval ambition, which had led him to consider an application to the British Royal Navy
Royal Navy
The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

. Instead, he trained to become an artillery officer and when his father's death reduced his income, was forced to complete the two-year course in one year. He was the first Corsican to graduate from the Ecole Militaire and was examined by the famed scientist Pierre-Simon Laplace
Pierre-Simon Laplace
Pierre-Simon, marquis de Laplace was a French mathematician and astronomer whose work was pivotal to the development of mathematical astronomy and statistics. He summarized and extended the work of his predecessors in his five volume Mécanique Céleste...

, whom Napoleon later appointed to the Senate.

Early career



Upon graduating in September 1785, Bonaparte was commissioned
Officer (armed forces)
An officer is a member of an armed force or uniformed service who holds a position of authority. Commissioned officers derive authority directly from a sovereign power and, as such, hold a commission charging them with the duties and responsibilities of a specific office or position...

 a second lieutenant
Second Lieutenant
Second lieutenant is a junior commissioned officer military rank in many armed forces.- United Kingdom and Commonwealth :The rank second lieutenant was introduced throughout the British Army in 1871 to replace the rank of ensign , although it had long been used in the Royal Artillery, Royal...

 in La Fère artillery regiment. He served on garrison duty in Valence, Drôme
Valence, Drôme
Valence is a commune in southeastern France, the capital of the Drôme department, situated on the left bank of the Rhône, south of Lyon on the railway to Marseilles.Its inhabitants are called Valentinois...

 and Auxonne
Auxonne
Auxonne is a commune in the Côte-d'Or department in Bourgogne in eastern France.Auxonne is one of the sites of the defensive structures of Vauban, clearly seen from the train bridge as it enters the Auxonne SNCF train station on the Dijon - Besançon train line. It also was home to the Artillery...

 until after the outbreak of the Revolution in 1789, though he took nearly two years' leave in Corsica and Paris during this period. A fervent Corsican nationalist, Bonaparte wrote to the Corsican leader Pasquale Paoli
Pasquale Paoli
Filippo Antonio Pasquale di Paoli , was a Corsican patriot and leader, the president of the Executive Council of the General Diet of the People of Corsica...

 in May 1789: "As the nation was perishing I was born. Thirty thousand Frenchmen were vomited on to our shores, drowning the throne of liberty in waves of blood. Such was the odious sight which was the first to strike me."

He spent the early years of the Revolution in Corsica, fighting in a complex three-way struggle between royalists, revolutionaries, and Corsican nationalists. He supported the revolutionary Jacobin
Jacobin
Jacobin may refer to:* Jacobin , a member of the Jacobin club, or political radical, generally* The Jacobin Club, a political club during the French Revolution* Jacobin , an American leftist political magazine....

 faction, gained the rank of lieutenant colonel
Lieutenant colonel
Lieutenant colonel is a rank of commissioned officer in the armies and most marine forces and some air forces of the world, typically ranking above a major and below a colonel. The rank of lieutenant colonel is often shortened to simply "colonel" in conversation and in unofficial correspondence...

 and command over a battalion of volunteers. After he had exceeded his leave of absence and led a riot against a French army in Corsica, he was somehow able to convince military authorities in Paris to promote him to captain in July 1792. He returned to Corsica once again and came into conflict with Paoli, who had decided to split with France and sabotage a French assault on the Sardinian
Kingdom of Sardinia
The Kingdom of Sardinia consisted of the island of Sardinia first as a part of the Crown of Aragon and subsequently the Spanish Empire , and second as a part of the composite state of the House of Savoy . Its capital was originally Cagliari, in the south of the island, and later Turin, on the...

 island of La Maddalena
La Maddalena
La Maddalena is a town and comune located on the island with the same name, in northern Sardinia, part of the province of Olbia-Tempio, Italy.-The town:...

, where Bonaparte was one of the expedition leaders. Bonaparte and his family had to flee to the French mainland in June 1793 because of the split with Paoli.

Siege of Toulon



In July 1793, he published a pro-republican pamphlet, Le souper de Beaucaire
Le souper de Beaucaire
Le souper de Beaucaire was a political pamphlet written by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1793. With the French Revolution into its fourth year, civil war had spread across France, in response to the government's decrees and radical oppression of counter-revolutionaries, through the use of capital punishment...

 (Supper at Beaucaire), which gained him the admiration and support of Augustin Robespierre
Augustin Robespierre
Augustin Bon Joseph de Robespierre was the younger brother of French Revolutionary leader, Maximilien Robespierre....

, younger brother of the Revolutionary leader Maximilien Robespierre
Maximilien Robespierre
Maximilien François Marie Isidore de Robespierre is one of the best-known and most influential figures of the French Revolution. He largely dominated the Committee of Public Safety and was instrumental in the period of the Revolution commonly known as the Reign of Terror, which ended with his...

. With the help of fellow Corsican Antoine Christophe Saliceti
Antoine Christophe Saliceti
Antoine Christophe Saliceti was a French politician and diplomat of the Revolution and First Empire.-Early career:...

, Bonaparte was appointed artillery commander of the republican forces at the siege of Toulon. The city had risen against the republican government
French First Republic
The French First Republic was founded on 22 September 1792, by the newly established National Convention. The First Republic lasted until the declaration of the First French Empire in 1804 under Napoleon I...

 and was occupied by British troops. He adopted a plan to capture a hill that would allow republican guns to dominate the city's harbour and force the British ships to evacuate. The assault on the position, during which Bonaparte was wounded in the thigh, led to the capture of the city and his promotion to brigadier general
Brigadier General
Brigadier general is a senior rank in the armed forces. It is the lowest ranking general officer in some countries, usually sitting between the ranks of colonel and major general. When appointed to a field command, a brigadier general is typically in command of a brigade consisting of around 4,000...

 at the age of 24. His actions brought him to the attention of the Committee of Public Safety
Committee of Public Safety
The Committee of Public Safety , created in April 1793 by the National Convention and then restructured in July 1793, formed the de facto executive government in France during the Reign of Terror , a stage of the French Revolution...

, and he was put in charge of the artillery of France's Army of Italy
Army of Italy (France)
The Army of Italy was a Field army of the French Army stationed on the Italian border and used for operations in Italy itself. Though it existed in some form in the 16th century through to the present, it is best known for its role during the French Revolutionary Wars and Napoleonic...

. Whilst waiting for confirmation of this post, Napoleon spent time as inspector of coastal fortifications on the Mediterranean coast near Marseille. He devised plans for attacking the Kingdom of Sardinia
Kingdom of Sardinia
The Kingdom of Sardinia consisted of the island of Sardinia first as a part of the Crown of Aragon and subsequently the Spanish Empire , and second as a part of the composite state of the House of Savoy . Its capital was originally Cagliari, in the south of the island, and later Turin, on the...

 as part of France's campaign against the First Coalition. The commander of the Army of Italy, Pierre Jadart Dumerbion
Pierre Jadart Dumerbion
Pierre Jadart Dumerbion or Pierre Jadart du Merbion joined the French army as a junior officer in 1754 and fought in the Seven Years War. As an experienced officer, he was promoted to colonel in 1792 at the start of the French Revolutionary Wars. He soon became a general officer and found himself...

 had seen too many generals executed for failing or for having the wrong political views. Therefore, he deferred to the powerful représentants en mission
Représentant en mission
During the French Revolution, a représentant en mission was an extraordinary envoy of the Legislative Assembly...

, Augustin Robespierre and Saliceti, who in turn were ready to listen to the freshly-promoted artillery general. Carrying out Bonaparte's plan in the Battle of Saorgio
Battle of Saorgio
The Battle of Saorgio was fought from 24 to 28 April 1794 between a First French Republic army commanded by Pierre Jadart Dumerbion and the armies of the Kingdom of Sardinia-Piedmont and the Habsburg Monarchy led by Joseph Nikolaus De Vins...

 in April 1794, the French army advanced northeast along the Italian Riviera
Italian Riviera
The Italian Riviera, or Ligurian Riviera is the narrow coastal strip which lies between the Ligurian Sea and the mountain chain formed by the Maritime Alps and the Apennines...

 then turned north to seize Ormea
Ormea
Ormea is a comune in the Province of Cuneo in the Italian region Piedmont, located about 100 km south of Turin and about 40 km southeast of Cuneo...

 in the mountains. From Ormea, they thrust west to outflank the Austro-Sardinian positions around Saorge
Saorge
Saorge is a commune in the Alpes-Maritimes department in southeastern France. Highway E74 which runs north from Menton, passes through Saorge on its way to the Col de Tende where it crosses into Italy....

. As a result, the coastal towns of Oneglia
Oneglia
Oneglia was a town in northern Italy on the Ligurian coast that was joined to Porto Maurizio to form the Comune of Imperia in 1923....

 and Loano
Loano
Loano is a comune in the Province of Savona in the Italian region Liguria, located about 60 km southwest of Genoa and about 30 km southwest of Savona...

 as well as the strategic Col de Tende
Col de Tende
Col de Tende is a high mountain pass in the Alps, on the border of France and Italy.It separates the Maritime Alps from the Ligurian Alps. It connects Nice and Tende in Alpes-Maritimes with Cuneo in Piedmont....

 (Tenda Pass) fell into French hands. Later, Augustin Robespierre sent Bonaparte on a mission to the Republic of Genoa to understand that country's intentions towards France.

13 Vendémiaire




Following the fall of the Robespierres in the July 1794 Thermidorian Reaction
Thermidorian Reaction
The Thermidorian Reaction was a revolt in the French Revolution against the excesses of the Reign of Terror. It was triggered by a vote of the Committee of Public Safety to execute Maximilien Robespierre, Antoine Louis Léon de Saint-Just de Richebourg and several other leading members of the Terror...

, Bonaparte was put under house arrest
House arrest
In justice and law, house arrest is a measure by which a person is confined by the authorities to his or her residence. Travel is usually restricted, if allowed at all...

 at Nice
Nice
Nice is the fifth most populous city in France, after Paris, Marseille, Lyon and Toulouse, with a population of 348,721 within its administrative limits on a land area of . The urban area of Nice extends beyond the administrative city limits with a population of more than 955,000 on an area of...

 for his association with the brothers. He was released within two weeks and due to his technical skills was asked to draw-up plans to attack Italian positions in the context of France's war with Austria. He also took part in an expedition to take back Corsica from the British, but the French were repulsed by the Royal Navy.

Bonaparate became engaged to Désirée Clary
Désirée Clary
Bernardine Eugénie Désirée Clary , one-time fiancée of Napoleon Bonaparte, was a Frenchwoman who became Queen of Sweden and Norway as the consort of King Charles XIV John, a former French General. She officially changed her name there to Desideria, a Latin version of her original name...

, whose sister, Julie Clary
Julie Clary
Marie Julie Bonaparte was Queen consort of Spain and the Indies, Naples and Sicily as the spouse of King Joseph Bonaparte, who was King of Naples and Sicily from January 1806 to June 1808, and later King of Spain and the Spanish West Indies from 25 June 1808 to June 1813.- Background:Julie Clary...

, married Bonaparte's elder brother Joseph; the Clarys were a wealthy merchant family from Marseilles. In April 1795, he was assigned to the Army of the West, which was engaged in the War in the Vendée—a civil war and royalist counter-revolution in Vendée, a region in west central France, on the Atlantic Ocean. As an infantry command, it was a demotion from artillery general – for which the army already had a full quota – and he pleaded poor health to avoid the posting. He was moved to the Bureau of Topography
Topography
Topography is the study of Earth's surface shape and features or those ofplanets, moons, and asteroids...

 of the Committee of Public Safety and sought, unsuccessfully, to be transferred to Constantinople
Constantinople
Constantinople was the capital of the Roman, Eastern Roman, Byzantine, Latin, and Ottoman Empires. Throughout most of the Middle Ages, Constantinople was Europe's largest and wealthiest city.-Names:...

 in order to offer his services to the Sultan
Sultan
Sultan is a title with several historical meanings. Originally, it was an Arabic language abstract noun meaning "strength", "authority", "rulership", and "dictatorship", derived from the masdar سلطة , meaning "authority" or "power". Later, it came to be used as the title of certain rulers who...

. During this period he wrote a romantic novella, Clisson et Eugénie, about a soldier and his lover, in a clear parallel to Bonaparte's own relationship with Désirée. On 15 September, Bonaparte was removed from the list of generals in regular service for his refusal to serve in the Vendée campaign. He now faced a difficult financial situation and reduced career prospects.

On 3 October, royalists in Paris declared a rebellion against the National Convention
National Convention
During the French Revolution, the National Convention or Convention, in France, comprised the constitutional and legislative assembly which sat from 20 September 1792 to 26 October 1795 . It held executive power in France during the first years of the French First Republic...

 after they were excluded from a new government, the Directory
French Directory
The Directory was a body of five Directors that held executive power in France following the Convention and preceding the Consulate...

. One of the leaders of the Thermidorian Reaction, Paul Barras
Paul François Jean Nicolas, vicomte de Barras
Paul François Jean Nicolas, vicomte de Barras was a French politician of the French Revolution, and the main executive leader of the Directory regime of 1795–1799.-Early life:...

, knew of Bonaparte's military exploits at Toulon and gave him command of the improvised forces in defence of the Convention in the Tuileries Palace
Tuileries Palace
The Tuileries Palace was a royal palace in Paris which stood on the right bank of the River Seine until 1871, when it was destroyed in the upheaval during the suppression of the Paris Commune...

. Bonaparte had witnessed the massacre of the King's Swiss Guard there three years earlier and realised artillery would be the key to its defence. He ordered a young cavalry officer, Joachim Murat
Joachim Murat
Joachim-Napoléon Murat , Marshal of France and Grand Admiral or Admiral of France, 1st Prince Murat, was Grand Duke of Berg from 1806 to 1808 and then King of Naples from 1808 to 1815...

, to seize large cannons and used them to repel the attackers on 5 October 1795—13 Vendémiaire An IV in the French Republican Calendar
French Republican Calendar
The French Republican Calendar or French Revolutionary Calendar was a calendar created and implemented during the French Revolution, and used by the French government for about 12 years from late 1793 to 1805, and for 18 days by the Paris Commune in 1871...

. One thousand four hundred royalists died, and the rest fled. He had cleared the streets with "a whiff of grapeshot
Grapeshot
In artillery, a grapeshot is a type of shot that is not a one solid element, but a mass of small metal balls or slugs packed tightly into a canvas bag. It was used both in land and naval warfare. When assembled, the balls resembled a cluster of grapes, hence the name...

", according to the 19th century historian Thomas Carlyle
Thomas Carlyle
Thomas Carlyle was a Scottish satirical writer, essayist, historian and teacher during the Victorian era.He called economics "the dismal science", wrote articles for the Edinburgh Encyclopedia, and became a controversial social commentator.Coming from a strict Calvinist family, Carlyle was...

 in The French Revolution: A History
The French Revolution: A History
The French Revolution: A History was written by the Scottish essayist, philosopher, and historian Thomas Carlyle. The three-volume work, first published in 1837 , charts the course of the French Revolution from 1789 to the height of the Reign of Terror and culminates in 1795...

.

The defeat of the Royalist insurrection extinguished the threat to the Convention and earned Bonaparte sudden fame, wealth, and the patronage of the new Directory; Murat would become his brother-in-law and one of his generals. Bonaparte was promoted to Commander of the Interior and given command of the Army of Italy. Within weeks he was romantically attached to Barras's former mistress, Joséphine de Beauharnais
Joséphine de Beauharnais
Joséphine de Beauharnais was the first wife of Napoléon Bonaparte, and thus the first Empress of the French. Her first husband Alexandre de Beauharnais had been guillotined during the Reign of Terror, and she had been imprisoned in the Carmes prison until her release five days after Alexandre's...

, whom he married on 9 March 1796 after he had broken off his engagement to Désirée Clary.

First Italian campaign



Two days after the marriage, Bonaparte left Paris to take command of the Army of Italy and led it on a successful invasion of Italy. At the Battle of Lodi
Battle of Lodi
The Battle of Lodi was fought on May 10, 1796 between French forces under General Napoleon Bonaparte and an Austrian rear guard led by Karl Philipp Sebottendorf at Lodi, Lombardy...

 he defeated Austrian forces and drove them out of Lombardy
Lombardy
Lombardy is one of the 20 regions of Italy. The capital is Milan. One-sixth of Italy's population lives in Lombardy and about one fifth of Italy's GDP is produced in this region, making it the most populous and richest region in the country and one of the richest in the whole of Europe...

. He was defeated at Caldiero
Battle of Caldiero (1796)
In the Battle of Caldiero on 12 November 1796, a Habsburg Austrian army led by Jozsef Alvinczi fought a First French Republic army commanded by Napoleon Bonaparte. The French assaulted the Austrian positions, which were initially held by the army advance guard under Prince Friedrich Franz Xaver of...

 by Austrian reinforcements, led by József Alvinczi, though Bonaparte regained the initiative at the crucial Battle of the Bridge of Arcole
Battle of the Bridge of Arcole
The Battle of Arcole, or Battle of Arcola saw a bold manœuvre by Napoleon Bonaparte's French Army of Italy to outflank the Austrian army under József Alvinczi and cut its line of retreat...

 and proceeded to subdue the Papal States
Papal States
The Papal State, State of the Church, or Pontifical States were among the major historical states of Italy from roughly the 6th century until the Italian peninsula was unified in 1861 by the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia .The Papal States comprised territories under...

. Bonaparte argued against the wishes of Directory atheists to march on Rome and dethrone the Pope as he reasoned this would create a power vacuum
Power vacuum
A power vacuum is, in its broadest sense, an expression for a condition that exists when someone has lost control of something and no one has replaced them. It is usually used to refer to a political situation that can occur when a government has no identifiable central authority...

 which would be exploited by the Kingdom of Naples
Kingdom of Naples
The Kingdom of Naples, comprising the southern part of the Italian peninsula, was the remainder of the old Kingdom of Sicily after secession of the island of Sicily as a result of the Sicilian Vespers rebellion of 1282. Known to contemporaries as the Kingdom of Sicily, it is dubbed Kingdom of...

. Instead, in March 1797, Bonaparte led his army into Austria and forced it to negotiate peace
Suing for peace
Suing for peace is an act by a warring nation to initiate a peace process in which the peace terms are more favorable than an unconditional surrender...

. The Treaty of Leoben
Treaty of Leoben
The Treaty of Leoben was signed on 17 April 1797 by Napoleon Bonaparte. It was a preliminary accord that contained many secret clauses. From these clauses, Austria would lose the Austrian Netherlands and Lombardy in exchange for the Venetian territories of Istria and Dalmatia...

 gave France control of most of northern Italy and the Low Countries
Low Countries
The Low Countries are the historical lands around the low-lying delta of the Rhine, Scheldt, and Meuse rivers, including the modern countries of Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and parts of northern France and western Germany....

, and a secret clause promised the Republic of Venice
Republic of Venice
The Republic of Venice or Venetian Republic was a state originating from the city of Venice in Northeastern Italy. It existed for over a millennium, from the late 7th century until 1797. It was formally known as the Most Serene Republic of Venice and is often referred to as La Serenissima, in...

 to Austria. Bonaparte marched on Venice and forced its surrender, ending 1,100 years of independence; he also authorised the French to loot treasures such as the Horses of Saint Mark
Horses of Saint Mark
The Triumphal Quadriga or Horses of St Mark's is a set of bronze statues of four horses, originally part of a monument depicting a quadriga , which have been set into the facade of St Mark's Basilica in Venice, northern Italy, since the 13th century.-Origins:The sculptures date from late classical...

.
His application of conventional military ideas to real-world situations effected his military triumphs, such as creative use of artillery as a mobile force to support his infantry. He referred to his tactics thus: "I have fought sixty battles and I have learned nothing which I did not know at the beginning. Look at Caesar; he fought the first like the last." He was adept at espionage and deception and could win battles by concealment of troop deployments and concentration of his forces on the 'hinge' of an enemy's weakened front. If he could not use his favourite envelopment strategy
Pincer movement
The pincer movement or double envelopment is a military maneuver. The flanks of the opponent are attacked simultaneously in a pinching motion after the opponent has advanced towards the center of an army which is responding by moving its outside forces to the enemy's flanks, in order to surround it...

, he would take up the central position and attack two co-operating forces at their hinge, swing round to fight one until it fled, then turn to face the other. In this Italian campaign, Bonaparte's army captured 150,000 prisoners, 540 cannons and 170 standards
Flag
A flag is a piece of fabric with a distinctive design that is usually rectangular and used as a symbol, as a signaling device, or decoration. The term flag is also used to refer to the graphic design employed by a flag, or to its depiction in another medium.The first flags were used to assist...

. The French army fought 67 actions and won 18 pitched battles through superior artillery technology and Bonaparte's tactics.

During the campaign, Bonaparte became increasingly influential in French politics; he founded two newspapers both for the troops in his army and also for circulation in France. The royalists attacked Bonaparte for looting Italy and warned he might become a dictator. Bonaparte sent General Pierre Augereau to Paris to lead a coup d'état and purge the royalists on 4 September—Coup of 18 Fructidor. This left Barras and his Republican allies in control again but dependent on Bonaparte who proceeded to peace negotiations with Austria. These negotiations resulted in the Treaty of Campo Formio
Treaty of Campo Formio
The Treaty of Campo Formio was signed on 18 October 1797 by Napoleon Bonaparte and Count Philipp von Cobenzl as representatives of revolutionary France and the Austrian monarchy...

, and Bonaparte returned to Paris in December as a hero. He met with Talleyrand, France's new Foreign Minister—who would later serve in the same capacity for Emperor Napoleon—and they began to prepare for an invasion of England.

Egyptian expedition




After two months of planning, Bonaparte decided France's naval power was not yet strong enough to confront the Royal Navy in the English Channel
English Channel
The English Channel , often referred to simply as the Channel, is an arm of the Atlantic Ocean that separates southern England from northern France, and joins the North Sea to the Atlantic. It is about long and varies in width from at its widest to in the Strait of Dover...

 and proposed a military expedition to seize Egypt and thereby undermine Britain's access to its trade interests in India. Bonaparte wished to establish a French presence in the Middle East, with the ultimate dream of linking with a Muslim enemy of the British in India, Tipu Sultan
Tipu Sultan
Tipu Sultan , also known as the Tiger of Mysore, was the de facto ruler of the Kingdom of Mysore. He was the son of Hyder Ali, at that time an officer in the Mysorean army, and his second wife, Fatima or Fakhr-un-Nissa...

. Napoleon assured the Directory that "as soon as he had conquered Egypt, he will establish relations with the Indian princes and, together with them, attack the English in their possessions." According to a February 1798 report by Talleyrand: "Having occupied and fortified Egypt, we shall send a force of 15,000 men from Suez
Suez
Suez is a seaport city in north-eastern Egypt, located on the north coast of the Gulf of Suez , near the southern terminus of the Suez Canal, having the same boundaries as Suez governorate. It has three harbors, Adabya, Ain Sokhna and Port Tawfiq, and extensive port facilities...

 to India, to join the forces of Tipu-Sahib and drive away the English." The Directory agreed in order to secure a trade route to India.

In May 1798, Bonaparte was elected a member of the French Academy of Sciences
French Academy of Sciences
The French Academy of Sciences is a learned society, founded in 1666 by Louis XIV at the suggestion of Jean-Baptiste Colbert, to encourage and protect the spirit of French scientific research...

. His Egyptian expedition included a group of 167 scientists: mathematicians, naturalists, chemists and geodesists
Geodesy
Geodesy , also named geodetics, a branch of earth sciences, is the scientific discipline that deals with the measurement and representation of the Earth, including its gravitational field, in a three-dimensional time-varying space. Geodesists also study geodynamical phenomena such as crustal...

 among them; their discoveries included the Rosetta Stone
Rosetta Stone
The Rosetta Stone is an ancient Egyptian granodiorite stele inscribed with a decree issued at Memphis in 196 BC on behalf of King Ptolemy V. The decree appears in three scripts: the upper text is Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, the middle portion Demotic script, and the lowest Ancient Greek...

, and their work was published in the Description de l'Égypte
Description de l'Egypte
Description de l'Égypte is the title of several books.* Description de l'Égypte - Description de l'Égypte ou Recueil des observations et des recherches qui ont été faites en Égypte pendant l'expédition de l'armée française Pub; First Edition , L'Imprimerie Imperiale, 1809-1813; l'Imprimerie...

 in 1809.

En route to Egypt, Bonaparte reached Malta
Malta
Malta , officially known as the Republic of Malta , is a Southern European country consisting of an archipelago situated in the centre of the Mediterranean, south of Sicily, east of Tunisia and north of Libya, with Gibraltar to the west and Alexandria to the east.Malta covers just over in...

 on 9 June 1798, then controlled by the Knights Hospitaller
Knights Hospitaller
The Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta , also known as the Sovereign Military Order of Malta , Order of Malta or Knights of Malta, is a Roman Catholic lay religious order, traditionally of military, chivalrous, noble nature. It is the world's...

. The two hundred Knights of French origin did not support the Grand Master, Ferdinand von Hompesch zu Bolheim
Ferdinand von Hompesch zu Bolheim
Ferdinand von Hompesch zu Bolheim was the 71st Prince and Grand Master of the Order of Malta, the first German to be elected to the office....

, who had succeeded a Frenchman, and made it clear they would not fight against their compatriots. Hompesch surrendered after token resistance, and Bonaparte captured an important naval base with the loss of only three men.

General Bonaparte and his expedition eluded pursuit by the Royal Navy and on 1 July landed at Alexandria
Alexandria
Alexandria is the second-largest city of Egypt, with a population of 4.1 million, extending about along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea in the north central part of the country; it is also the largest city lying directly on the Mediterranean coast. It is Egypt's largest seaport, serving...

. He fought the Battle of Shubra Khit
Battle of Shubra Khit
The Battle of Shubra Khit was a battle that took place during Napoleon's campaign in Egypt on July 13, 1798. On their march to Cairo, the French encountered Mameluke cavalry under Murad Bey...

 against the Mamluk
Mamluk
A Mamluk was a soldier of slave origin, who were predominantly Cumans/Kipchaks The "mamluk phenomenon", as David Ayalon dubbed the creation of the specific warrior...

s, Egypt's ruling military caste. This helped the French practice their defensive tactic for the Battle of the Pyramids
Battle of the Pyramids
The Battle of the Pyramids, also known as the Battle of Embabeh, was fought on July 21, 1798 between the French army in Egypt under Napoleon Bonaparte, and local Mamluk forces. It occurred during France's Egyptian Campaign and was the battle where Napoleon put into use one of his significant...

 fought on 21 July, about 24 km from the pyramids
Egyptian pyramids
The Egyptian pyramids are ancient pyramid-shaped masonry structures located in Egypt.There are 138 pyramids discovered in Egypt as of 2008. Most were built as tombs for the country's Pharaohs and their consorts during the Old and Middle Kingdom periods.The earliest known Egyptian pyramids are found...

. General Bonaparte's forces of 25,000 roughly equalled those of the Mamluks' Egyptian cavalry, but he formed hollow squares with supplies kept safely inside. 29 French and approximately 2,000 Egyptians were killed. The victory boosted the morale of the French army.

On 1 August, the British fleet under Horatio Nelson captured or destroyed all but two French vessels in the Battle of the Nile
Battle of the Nile
The Battle of the Nile was a major naval battle fought between British and French fleets at Aboukir Bay on the Mediterranean coast of Egypt from 1–3 August 1798...

, and Bonaparte's goal of a strengthened French position in the Mediterranean was frustrated. His army had succeeded in a temporary increase of French power in Egypt, though it faced repeated uprisings. In early 1799, he moved an army into the Ottoman province
Wilayah
A wilāyah or vilâyet , or vilayat in Urdu and Turkish, is an administrative division, usually translated as "province", rarely as "governorate". The word comes from the Arabic "w-l-y", "to govern": a wāli — "governor" — governs a wilayah, "that which is governed"...

 of Damascus (Syria
Syria
Syria , officially the Syrian Arab Republic , is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea to the West, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, and Israel to the southwest....

 and Galilee
Galilee
Galilee , is a large region in northern Israel which overlaps with much of the administrative North District of the country. Traditionally divided into Upper Galilee , Lower Galilee , and Western Galilee , extending from Dan to the north, at the base of Mount Hermon, along Mount Lebanon to the...

). Bonaparte led these 13,000 French soldiers in the conquest of the coastal towns of Arish, Gaza
Gaza
Gaza , also referred to as Gaza City, is a Palestinian city in the Gaza Strip, with a population of about 450,000, making it the largest city in the Palestinian territories.Inhabited since at least the 15th century BC,...

, Jaffa
Jaffa
Jaffa is an ancient port city believed to be one of the oldest in the world. Jaffa was incorporated with Tel Aviv creating the city of Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel. Jaffa is famous for its association with the biblical story of the prophet Jonah.-Etymology:...

, and Haifa
Haifa
Haifa is the largest city in northern Israel, and the third-largest city in the country, with a population of over 268,000. Another 300,000 people live in towns directly adjacent to the city including the cities of the Krayot, as well as, Tirat Carmel, Daliyat al-Karmel and Nesher...

. The attack on Jaffa
Siege of Jaffa
The Siege of Jaffa was fought from 3 to 7 March 1799 between France and the Ottoman Empire. The French were led by Napoleon Bonaparte, and they captured the city.-Course:...

 was particularly brutal: Bonaparte, on discovering many of the defenders were former prisoners of war, ostensibly on parole, ordered the garrison and 1,400 prisoners to be executed by bayonet or drowning to save bullets. Men, women and children were robbed and murdered for three days.

With his army weakened by disease—mostly bubonic plague
Bubonic plague
Plague is a deadly infectious disease that is caused by the enterobacteria Yersinia pestis, named after the French-Swiss bacteriologist Alexandre Yersin. Primarily carried by rodents and spread to humans via fleas, the disease is notorious throughout history, due to the unrivaled scale of death...

—and poor supplies, Bonaparte was unable to reduce the fortress
Siege of Acre (1799)
The Siege of Acre of 1799 was an unsuccessful French siege of the Ottoman-defended, walled city of Acre and was the turning point of Napoleon's invasion of Egypt and Syria.-Background:...

 of Acre
Acre, Israel
Acre , is a city in the Western Galilee region of northern Israel at the northern extremity of Haifa Bay. Acre is one of the oldest continuously inhabited sites in the country....

 and returned to Egypt in May. To speed up the retreat, he ordered plague-stricken men to be poisoned. (However, British eyewitness accounts later showed that most of the men were still alive and had not been poisoned.) His supporters have argued this was necessary given the continued harassment of stragglers by Ottoman forces, and indeed those left behind alive were tortured and beheaded by the Ottomans. Back in Egypt, on 25 July, Bonaparte defeated an Ottoman amphibious invasion at Abukir
Battle of Abukir (1799)
The Battle of Abukir was Napoleon Bonaparte's decisive victory over Seid Mustafa Pasha's Ottoman army on 25 July 1799 during the French invasion of Egypt...

.

Ruler of France



While in Egypt, Bonaparte stayed informed of European affairs through irregular delivery of newspapers and dispatches. He learned France had suffered a series of defeats in the War of the Second Coalition
War of the Second Coalition
The "Second Coalition" was the second attempt by European monarchs, led by the Habsburg Monarchy of Austria and the Russian Empire, to contain or eliminate Revolutionary France. They formed a new alliance and attempted to roll back France's previous military conquests...

. On 24 August 1799, he took advantage of the temporary departure of British ships from French coastal ports and set sail for France, despite the fact he had received no explicit orders from Paris. The army was left in the charge of Jean Baptiste Kléber
Jean Baptiste Kléber
Jean Baptiste Kléber was a French general during the French Revolutionary Wars. His military career started in Habsburg service, but his plebeian ancestry hindered his opportunities...

. Unknown to Bonaparte, the Directory had sent him orders to return to ward off possible invasions of French soil, but poor lines of communication meant the messages had failed to reach him. By the time he reached Paris in October France's situation had been improved by a series of victories. The Republic was bankrupt, however, and the ineffective Directory was unpopular with the French population. The Directory discussed Bonaparte's "desertion" but was too weak to punish him.

Bonaparte was approached by one of the Directors, Emmanuel-Joseph Sieyès, for his support in a coup to overthrow the constitutional government
French Constitution of 1795
The Constitution of 22 August 1795 was a national constitution of France ratified by the National Convention on 22 August 1795 during the French Revolution...

. The leaders of the plot included his brother Lucien; the speaker of the Council of Five Hundred
Council of Five Hundred
The Council of Five Hundred , or simply the Five Hundred was the lower house of the legislature of France during the period commonly known as the Directory , from 22 August 1795 until 9 November 1799, roughly the second half of the period generally referred to as the...

, Roger Ducos
Roger Ducos
Pierre Roger Ducos , better known as Roger Ducos, was a French political figure during the Revolution and First Empire, a member of the National Convention, and of the Directory....

; another Director, Joseph Fouché
Joseph Fouché
Joseph Fouché, 1st Duc d'Otrante was a French statesman and Minister of Police under Napoleon Bonaparte. In English texts his title is often translated as Duke of Otranto.-Youth:Fouché was born in Le Pellerin, a small village near Nantes...

; and Talleyrand. On 9 November—18 Brumaire by the French Republican Calendar—Bonaparte was charged with the safety of the legislative councils, who were persuaded to remove to the Château de Saint-Cloud
Château de Saint-Cloud
The Château de Saint-Cloud was a Palace in France, built on a magnificent site overlooking the Seine at Saint-Cloud in Hauts-de-Seine, about 10 kilometres west of Paris. Today it is a large park on the outskirts of the capital and is owned by the state, but the area as a whole has had a large...

, to the west of Paris, after a rumour of a Jacobin rebellion was spread by the plotters. By the following day, the deputies had realised they faced an attempted coup. Faced with their remonstrations, Bonaparte led troops to seize control and disperse them, which left a rump legislature
Rump legislature
A Rump legislature is a legislature formed of part, usually a minority, of the legislators originally elected or appointed to office.The word "rump" normally refers to the back end of an animal; its use meaning "remnant" was first recorded in the context of the 17th century Rump Parliament in England...

 to name Bonaparte, Sieyès, and Ducos as provisional Consuls to administer the government.

French Consulate




Though Sieyès expected to dominate the new regime, he was outmanoeuvred by Bonaparte, who drafted the Constitution of the Year VIII
Constitution of the Year VIII
The Constitution of the Year VIII was a national constitution of France, adopted December 24, 1799 , which established the form of government known as the Consulate...

 and secured his own election as First Consul, and he took up residence at the Tuileries. This made Bonaparte the most powerful person in France.

In 1800, Bonaparte and his troops crossed the Alps into Italy, where French forces had been almost completely driven out by the Austrians whilst he was in Egypt. The campaign began badly for the French after Bonaparte made strategic errors; one force was left besieged at Genoa
Siege of Genoa (1800)
In the Siege of Genoa the Austrians besieged and captured Genoa but the smaller French force under André Masséna had diverted enough Austrian troops so that Napoleon could win the Battle of Marengo.-Background:...

 but managed to hold out and thereby occupy Austrian resources. This effort, and French general Louis Desaix's timely reinforcements, allowed Bonaparte narrowly to avoid defeat and to triumph over the Austrians in June at the significant Battle of Marengo. Bonaparte's brother Joseph led the peace negotiations in Lunéville
Lunéville
Lunéville is a commune in the Meurthe-et-Moselle department in France.It is a sub-prefecture of the department and lies on the Meurthe River.-History:...

 and reported that Austria, emboldened by British support, would not recognise France's newly gained territory. As negotiations became increasingly fractious, Bonaparte gave orders to his general Moreau
Jean Victor Marie Moreau
Jean Victor Marie Moreau was a French general who helped Napoleon Bonaparte to power, but later became a rival and was banished to the United States.- Early life :Moreau was born at Morlaix in Brittany...

 to strike Austria once more. Moreau led France to victory at Hohenlinden. As a result, the Treaty of Lunéville
Treaty of Lunéville
The Treaty of Lunéville was signed on 9 February 1801 between the French Republic and the Holy Roman Emperor Francis II, negotiating both on behalf of his own domains and of the Holy Roman Empire...

 was signed in February 1801; the French gains of the Treaty of Campo Formio were reaffirmed and increased.

Temporary peace in Europe


Bonaparte set up a camp at Boulogne-sur-Mer
Boulogne-sur-Mer
-Road:* Metropolitan bus services are operated by the TCRB* Coach services to Calais and Dunkerque* A16 motorway-Rail:* The main railway station is Gare de Boulogne-Ville and located in the south of the city....

 to prepare for an invasion of Britain, but both countries had become tired of war and signed the Treaty of Amiens
Treaty of Amiens
The Treaty of Amiens temporarily ended hostilities between the French Republic and the United Kingdom during the French Revolutionary Wars. It was signed in the city of Amiens on 25 March 1802 , by Joseph Bonaparte and the Marquess Cornwallis as a "Definitive Treaty of Peace"...

 in October 1801 and March 1802; this included the withdrawal of British troops from most colonial territories it had recently occupied. The peace was uneasy and short-lived; Britain did not evacuate Malta as promised and protested against Bonaparte's annexation
Annexation
Annexation is the de jure incorporation of some territory into another geo-political entity . Usually, it is implied that the territory and population being annexed is the smaller, more peripheral, and weaker of the two merging entities, barring physical size...

 of Piedmont and his Act of Mediation
Act of Mediation
The Act of Mediation was issued by Napoleon Bonaparte on 19 February 1803 establishing the Swiss Confederation. The act also abolished the previous Helvetic Republic, which had existed since the invasion of Switzerland by French troops in 1798. After the withdrawal of French troops in July 1802,...

, which established a new Swiss Confederation, though neither of these territories were covered by the treaty. The dispute culminated in a declaration of war by Britain in May 1803, and he reassembled the invasion camp at Boulogne.

Bonaparte faced a major setback and eventual defeat in the Haitian Revolution. By the Law of 20 May 1802
Law of 20 May 1802
The Law of 20 May 1802 was a French law passed on 20 May 1802 , revoking the law of 4 February 1794 which had abolished slavery in all the French colonies...

 Bonaparte re-established slavery in France's colonial possessions, where it had been banned following the Revolution. Following a slave revolt, he sent an army
Saint-Domingue expedition
The Saint-Domingue expedition was a French military expedition sent by Napoleon Bonaparte, then First Consul, under his brother-in-law Charles Victor Emmanuel Leclerc in an attempt to regain French control of the island of Saint-Domingue and curtail the measures of independence taken by the former...

 to reconquer Saint-Domingue
Saint-Domingue
The labour for these plantations was provided by an estimated 790,000 African slaves . Between 1764 and 1771, the average annual importation of slaves varied between 10,000-15,000; by 1786 it was about 28,000, and from 1787 onward, the colony received more than 40,000 slaves a year...

 and establish a base. The force was, however, destroyed by yellow fever
Yellow fever
Yellow fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic disease. The virus is a 40 to 50 nm enveloped RNA virus with positive sense of the Flaviviridae family....

 and fierce resistance led by Haitian generals Toussaint Louverture and Jean-Jacques Dessalines
Jean-Jacques Dessalines
Jean-Jacques Dessalines was a leader of the Haitian Revolution and the first ruler of an independent Haiti under the 1801 constitution. Initially regarded as Governor-General, Dessalines later named himself Emperor Jacques I of Haiti...

. Faced by imminent war against Britain and bankruptcy, he recognised French possessions on the mainland of North America would be indefensible and sold them to the United States—the Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana Purchase
The Louisiana Purchase was the acquisition by the United States of America of of France's claim to the territory of Louisiana in 1803. The U.S...

—for less than three cents per acre ($7.40 per km²).

Reforms


Bonaparte instituted lasting reforms, including higher education, a tax code
Tax code
In the UK, every person paid under the PAYE scheme is allocated a tax code by HM Revenue and Customs. This is usually in the form of a number followed by a letter suffix, though other 'non-standard' codes are also used. This code describes to employers how much tax to deduct from an employee. The...

, road and sewer systems, and established the Banque de France
Banque de France
The Banque de France is the central bank of France; it is linked to the European Central Bank . Its main charge is to implement the interest rate policy of the European System of Central Banks...

 (central bank). He negotiated the Concordat of 1801
Concordat of 1801
The Concordat of 1801 was an agreement between Napoleon and Pope Pius VII, signed on 15 July 1801. It solidified the Roman Catholic Church as the majority church of France and brought back most of its civil status....

 with the Catholic Church, which sought to reconcile the mostly Catholic population to his regime. It was presented alongside the Organic Articles
Organic Articles
The Organic Articles was the name of a law administering public worship in France.- History :The Articles were originally presented by Napoléon Bonaparte, and consisted of 77 Articles relating to Catholicism and 44 Articles relating to Protestantism...

, which regulated public worship in France. Later that year, Bonaparte became President of the French Academy of Sciences and appointed Jean Baptiste Joseph Delambre its Permanent Secretary. In May 1802, he instituted the Legion of Honour, a substitute for the old royalist decorations and orders of chivalry
Chivalric order
Chivalric orders are societies and fellowships of knights that have been created by European monarchs in imitation of the military orders of the Crusades...

, to encourage civilian and military achievements; the order is still the highest decoration in France. His powers were increased by the Constitution of the Year X
Constitution of the Year X
The Constitution of the Year X was a national constitution of France adopted during the Year X of the French Revolutionary Calendar...

 including: Article 1. The French people name, and the Senate proclaims Napoleon-Bonaparte First Consul for Life. After this he was generally referred to as Napoleon rather than Bonaparte.

Napoleon's set of civil laws
Civil code
A civil code is a systematic collection of laws designed to comprehensively deal with the core areas of private law. A jurisdiction that has a civil code generally also has a code of civil procedure...

, the Code Civil—now often known as the Napoleonic Code
Napoleonic code
The Napoleonic Code — or Code Napoléon — is the French civil code, established under Napoléon I in 1804. The code forbade privileges based on birth, allowed freedom of religion, and specified that government jobs go to the most qualified...

—was prepared by committees of legal experts under the supervision of Jean Jacques Régis de Cambacérès
Jean Jacques Régis de Cambacérès
Jean-Jacques-Régis de Cambacérès, 1st Duke of Parma was a French lawyer and statesman during the French Revolution and the First Empire, best remembered as the author of the Napoleonic code, which still forms the basis of French civil law.-Early career:Cambacérès was born in Montpellier, into a...

, the Second Consul. Napoleon participated actively in the sessions of the Council of State that revised the drafts. The development of the code was a fundamental change in the nature of the civil law
Civil law (legal system)
Civil law is a legal system inspired by Roman law and whose primary feature is that laws are codified into collections, as compared to common law systems that gives great precedential weight to common law on the principle that it is unfair to treat similar facts differently on different...

 legal system with its stress on clearly written and accessible law. Other codes were commissioned by Napoleon to codify criminal and commerce law; a Code of Criminal Instruction was published, which enacted rules of due process
Due process
Due process is the legal code that the state must venerate all of the legal rights that are owed to a person under the principle. Due process balances the power of the state law of the land and thus protects individual persons from it...

. See Legacy.
Napoleonic Code



The Napoleonic code was adopted throughout much of Europe, though only in the lands he conquered, and remained in force after Napoleon's defeat. Napoleon said: "My true glory is not to have won 40 battles...Waterloo will erase the memory of so many victories. ... But...what will live forever, is my Civil Code." The Code still has importance today in a quarter of the world's jurisdictions including in Europe, the Americas and Africa. Dieter Langewiesche described the code as a "revolutionary project" which spurred the development of bourgeois society
Bourgeoisie
In sociology and political science, bourgeoisie describes a range of groups across history. In the Western world, between the late 18th century and the present day, the bourgeoisie is a social class "characterized by their ownership of capital and their related culture." A member of the...

 in Germany by the extension of the right to own property and an acceleration towards the end of feudalism
Feudalism
Feudalism was a set of legal and military customs in medieval Europe that flourished between the 9th and 15th centuries, which, broadly defined, was a system for ordering society around relationships derived from the holding of land in exchange for service or labour.Although derived from the...

. Napoleon reorganised what had been the Holy Roman Empire, made up of more than a thousand entities, into a more streamlined forty-state Confederation of the Rhine
Confederation of the Rhine
The Confederation of the Rhine was a confederation of client states of the First French Empire. It was formed initially from 16 German states by Napoleon after he defeated Austria's Francis II and Russia's Alexander I in the Battle of Austerlitz. The Treaty of Pressburg, in effect, led to the...

; this provided the basis for the German Confederation
German Confederation
The German Confederation was the loose association of Central European states created by the Congress of Vienna in 1815 to coordinate the economies of separate German-speaking countries. It acted as a buffer between the powerful states of Austria and Prussia...

 and the unification of Germany
Unification of Germany
The formal unification of Germany into a politically and administratively integrated nation state officially occurred on 18 January 1871 at the Versailles Palace's Hall of Mirrors in France. Princes of the German states gathered there to proclaim Wilhelm of Prussia as Emperor Wilhelm of the German...

 in 1871. The movement toward national unification in Italy was similarly precipitated by Napoleonic rule. These changes contributed to the development of nationalism and the nation state.
Metric system


The official introduction of the metric system in September 1799 was unpopular in large sections of French society, and Napoleon's rule greatly aided adoption of the new standard across not only France but the French sphere of influence
Sphere of influence
In the field of international relations, a sphere of influence is a spatial region or conceptual division over which a state or organization has significant cultural, economic, military or political influence....

. Napoleon ultimately took a retrograde step in 1812 when he passed legislation to introduce the mesures usuelles
Mesures usuelles
Mesures usuelles were a system of measurement introduced by Napoleon I in 1812 to act as compromise between the metric system and traditional measurements...

 (traditional units of measurement) for retail trade – a system of measure that resembled the pre-revolutionary units but were based on the kilogram and the metre; for example the livre metrique (metric pound) was 500 g instead of 489.5 g – the value of the livre du roi (the king's pound). Other units of measure were rounded in a similar manner. This however laid the foundations for the definitive introduction of the metric system across Europe in the middle of the 19th century.
Concordat



Seeking national reconciliation between revolutionaries and Catholics, the Concordat of 1801 was signed on 15 July 1801 between Napoleon and Pope Pius VII
Pope Pius VII
Pope Pius VII , born Barnaba Niccolò Maria Luigi Chiaramonti, was a monk, theologian and bishop, who reigned as Pope from 14 March 1800 to 20 August 1823.-Early life:...

. It solidified the Roman Catholic Church as the majority church of France and brought back most of its civil status.

During the French Revolution, the National Assembly
National Assembly (French Revolution)
During the French Revolution, the National Assembly , which existed from June 17 to July 9, 1789, was a transitional body between the Estates-General and the National Constituent Assembly.-Background:...

 had taken Church properties and issued the Civil Constitution of the Clergy
Civil Constitution of the Clergy
The Civil Constitution of the Clergy was a law passed on 12 July 1790 during the French Revolution, that subordinated the Roman Catholic Church in France to the French government....

, which made the Church a department of the State, removing it from the authority of the Pope
Pope
The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

. This caused hostility among the Vendeans towards the change in the relationship between the Catholic Church and the French government. Subsequent laws abolished the traditional Gregorian calendar
Gregorian calendar
The Gregorian calendar, also known as the Western calendar, or Christian calendar, is the internationally accepted civil calendar. It was introduced by Pope Gregory XIII, after whom the calendar was named, by a decree signed on 24 February 1582, a papal bull known by its opening words Inter...

 and Christian holidays.

While the Concordat restored some ties to the papacy, it was largely in favor of the state; the balance of church-state relations had tilted firmly in Napoleon's favour. Now, Napoleon could win favor with the Catholics within France while also controlling Rome in a political sense. Napoleon once told his brother Lucien in April 1801, "Skillful conquerors have not got entangled with priests. They can both contain them and use them." As a part of the Concordat, he presented another set of laws called the Organic Articles
Organic Articles
The Organic Articles was the name of a law administering public worship in France.- History :The Articles were originally presented by Napoléon Bonaparte, and consisted of 77 Articles relating to Catholicism and 44 Articles relating to Protestantism...

.
Jewish emancipation

Napoleon emancipated Jews
Jewish Emancipation
Jewish emancipation was the external and internal process of freeing the Jewish people of Europe, including recognition of their rights as equal citizens, and the formal granting of citizenship as individuals; it occurred gradually between the late 18th century and the early 20th century...

 (as well as Protestants in Catholic countries and Catholics in Protestant countries) from laws which restricted them to ghettos, and he expanded their rights to property, worship, and careers. Despite the anti-semitic reaction to Napoleon's policies from foreign governments and within France, he believed emancipation would benefit France by attracting Jews to the country given the restrictions they faced elsewhere. He stated, "I will never accept any proposals that will obligate the Jewish people to leave France, because to me the Jews are the same as any other citizen in our country. It takes weakness to chase them out of the country, but it takes strength to assimilate them." He was seen as so favourable to the Jews that the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
The Russian Orthodox Church or, alternatively, the Moscow Patriarchate The ROC is often said to be the largest of the Eastern Orthodox churches in the world; including all the autocephalous churches under its umbrella, its adherents number over 150 million worldwide—about half of the 300 million...

 formally condemned him as "Antichrist and the Enemy of God".

French Empire



Napoleon faced royalist and Jacobin plots as France's ruler, including the Conspiration des poignards
Conspiration des poignards
The Conspiration des poignards or Complot de l'Opéra was an alleged assassination attempt against Napoleon Bonaparte, the members of the plot were not clearly established...

 (Dagger plot) in October 1800 and the Plot of the Rue Saint-Nicaise
Plot of the Rue Saint-Nicaise
The plot of the Rue Saint-Nicaise, also known as the Machine infernale plot, was an assassination attempt on the life of the First Consul of France, Napoleon Bonaparte, in Paris on 24 December 1800...

 (also known as the infernal machine) two months later. In January 1804, his police uncovered an assassination plot against him which involved Moreau and which was ostensibly sponsored by the Bourbon
House of Bourbon
The House of Bourbon is a European royal house, a branch of the Capetian dynasty . Bourbon kings first ruled Navarre and France in the 16th century. By the 18th century, members of the Bourbon dynasty also held thrones in Spain, Naples, Sicily, and Parma...

 former rulers of France. On the advice of Talleyrand, Napoleon ordered the kidnapping of Louis Antoine, Duke of Enghien, in violation of neighbouring Baden
Baden
Baden is a historical state on the east bank of the Rhine in the southwest of Germany, now the western part of the Baden-Württemberg of Germany....

's sovereignty. After a secret trial the Duke was executed, even though he had not been involved in the plot.

Napoleon used the plot to justify the re-creation of a hereditary monarchy in France, with himself as emperor, as a Bourbon restoration would be more difficult if the Bonapartist succession was entrenched in the constitution. Napoleon crowned
Crown of Napoleon
The Crown of Napoleon was a coronation crown manufactured for Emperor Napoleon I of the French and used in his coronation on December 2, 1804. Napoleon called his new crown the Crown of Charlemagne, the name of the ancient royal coronation crown of France that had been destroyed in the French...

 himself Emperor Napoleon I on 2 December 1804 at Notre Dame de Paris
Notre Dame de Paris
Notre Dame de Paris , also known as Notre Dame Cathedral, is a Gothic, Roman Catholic cathedral on the eastern half of the Île de la Cité in the fourth arrondissement of Paris, France. It is the cathedral of the Catholic Archdiocese of Paris: that is, it is the church that contains the cathedra of...

 and then crowned Joséphine Empress. The story that he seized the crown out of the hands of Pope Pius VII
Pope Pius VII
Pope Pius VII , born Barnaba Niccolò Maria Luigi Chiaramonti, was a monk, theologian and bishop, who reigned as Pope from 14 March 1800 to 20 August 1823.-Early life:...

 during the ceremony to avoid his subjugation to the authority of the pontiff is apocrypha
Apocrypha
The term apocrypha is used with various meanings, including "hidden", "esoteric", "spurious", "of questionable authenticity", ancient Chinese "revealed texts and objects" and "Christian texts that are not canonical"....

l; the coronation procedure had been agreed in advance.Napoleon gave the pope a tiara following the ceremony, now referred to as the Napoleon Tiara
Napoleon Tiara
The Napoleon Tiara was a papal tiara given to Pope Pius VII by Emperor Napoleon I in 1805 following the pope's coronation of Napoleon as Emperor of the French....

.
At Milan Cathedral on 26 May 1805, Napoleon was crowned King of Italy
King of Italy
King of Italy is a title adopted by many rulers of the Italian peninsula after the fall of the Roman Empire...

 with the Iron Crown of Lombardy
Iron Crown of Lombardy
The Iron Crown of Lombardy is both a reliquary and one of the most ancient royal insignia of Europe. The crown became one of the symbols of the Kingdom of Lombards and later of the medieval Kingdom of Italy...

. He created eighteen Marshals of the Empire
Marshal of France
The Marshal of France is a military distinction in contemporary France, not a military rank. It is granted to generals for exceptional achievements...

 from amongst his top generals, to secure the allegiance of the army. Ludwig van Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential composers of all time.Born in Bonn, then the capital of the Electorate of Cologne and part of...

, a long-time admirer, was disappointed at this turn towards imperialism and scratched his dedication to Napoleon from his 3rd Symphony
Symphony No. 3 (Beethoven)
Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony No. 3 in E flat major , also known as the Eroica , is a landmark musical work marking the full arrival of the composer's "middle-period," a series of unprecedented large scale works of emotional depth and structural rigor.The symphony is widely regarded as a mature...

.

War of the Third Coalition




By 1805, Britain had convinced Austria and Russia to join a Third Coalition against France. Napoleon knew the French fleet could not defeat the Royal Navy in a head-to-head battle and planned to lure it away from the English Channel. The French Navy
French Navy
The French Navy, officially the Marine nationale and often called La Royale is the maritime arm of the French military. It includes a full range of fighting vessels, from patrol boats to a nuclear powered aircraft carrier and 10 nuclear-powered submarines, four of which are capable of launching...

 would escape from the British blockades of Toulon and Brest and threaten to attack the West Indies, thus drawing off the British defence of the Western Approaches
Western Approaches
The Western Approaches is a rectangular area of the Atlantic ocean lying on the western coast of Great Britain. The rectangle is higher than it is wide, the north and south boundaries defined by the north and south ends of the British Isles, the eastern boundary lying on the western coast, and the...

, in the hope a Franco-Spanish fleet could take control of the channel long enough for French armies to cross from Boulogne and invade England. However, after defeat at the naval Battle of Cape Finisterre
Battle of Cape Finisterre (1805)
In the Battle of Cape Finisterre off Galicia, Spain, the British fleet under Admiral Robert Calder fought an indecisive naval battle against the Combined Franco-Spanish fleet which was returning from the West Indies...

 in July 1805 and Admiral Villeneuve's
Pierre-Charles Villeneuve
Pierre-Charles-Jean-Baptiste-Silvestre de Villeneuve was a French naval officer during the Napoleonic Wars. He was in command of the French and Spanish fleets defeated by Nelson at the Battle of Trafalgar....

 retreat to Cadiz, invasion was never again a realistic option for Napoleon.

Instead, he ordered the army stationed at Boulogne, his Grande Armée, to march to Germany secretly in a turning movement
Turning movement
In military tactics, a turning movement involves an attacker's forces reaching the rear of a defender's forces, separating the defender from their principal defensive positions and placing them in a pocket...

—the Ulm Campaign
Ulm Campaign
The Ulm Campaign consisted of a series of French and Bavarian military maneuvers and battles to outflank and capture an Austrian army in 1805 during the War of the Third Coalition. It took place in the vicinity of and inside the Swabian city of Ulm...

. This encircled the Austrian forces about to attack France and severed their lines of communication. On 20 October 1805, the French captured 30,000 prisoners at Ulm
Battle of Ulm
The Battle of Ulm was a series of minor skirmishes at the end of Napoleon Bonaparte's Ulm Campaign, culminating in the surrender of an entire Austrian army near Ulm in Württemberg....

, though the next day Britain's victory at the Battle of Trafalgar
Battle of Trafalgar
The Battle of Trafalgar was a sea battle fought between the British Royal Navy and the combined fleets of the French Navy and Spanish Navy, during the War of the Third Coalition of the Napoleonic Wars ....

 meant the Royal Navy gained control of the seas. Six weeks later, on the first anniversary of his coronation, Napoleon defeated Austria and Russia at Austerlitz
Battle of Austerlitz
The Battle of Austerlitz, also known as the Battle of the Three Emperors, was one of Napoleon's greatest victories, where the French Empire effectively crushed the Third Coalition...

. This ended the Third Coalition, and he commissioned the Arc de Triomphe
Arc de Triomphe
-The design:The astylar design is by Jean Chalgrin , in the Neoclassical version of ancient Roman architecture . Major academic sculptors of France are represented in the sculpture of the Arc de Triomphe: Jean-Pierre Cortot; François Rude; Antoine Étex; James Pradier and Philippe Joseph Henri Lemaire...

 to commemorate the victory. Austria had to concede territory; the Peace of Pressburg
Peace of Pressburg
The Peace of Pressburg refers to four peace treaties concluded in Pressburg . The fourth Peace of Pressburg of 1805 during the Napoleonic Wars is the best-known.-First:...

 led to the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
The Holy Roman Empire was a realm that existed from 962 to 1806 in Central Europe.It was ruled by the Holy Roman Emperor. Its character changed during the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period, when the power of the emperor gradually weakened in favour of the princes...

 and creation of the Confederation of the Rhine
Confederation of the Rhine
The Confederation of the Rhine was a confederation of client states of the First French Empire. It was formed initially from 16 German states by Napoleon after he defeated Austria's Francis II and Russia's Alexander I in the Battle of Austerlitz. The Treaty of Pressburg, in effect, led to the...

 with Napoleon named as its Protector
Protector (title)
Protector, sometimes spelled protecter, is used as a title or part of various historical titles of heads of state and others in authority...

.

Napoleon would go on to say, "The battle of Austerlitz is the finest of all I have fought." Frank McLynn suggests Napoleon was so successful at Austerlitz he lost touch with reality, and what used to be French foreign policy became a "personal Napoleonic one". Vincent Cronin
Vincent Cronin
Vincent Archibald Patrick Cronin, FRSL was a British historical, cultural, and biographical writer, best-known for his biographies of Louis XIV, Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, Catherine the Great, and Napoleon, as well as for his books on the Renaissance.Cronin was born in Tredegar, Monmouthshire...

 disagrees, stating Napoleon was not overly ambitious for himself, that "he embodied the ambitions of thirty million Frenchmen".

Middle-Eastern alliances



Even after the failed campaign in Egypt, Napoleon continued to entertain a grand scheme to establish a French presence in the Middle East. An alliance with Middle-Eastern powers would have the strategic advantage of pressuring Russia on its southern border. From 1803, Napoleon went to considerable lengths to try to convince the Ottoman Empire to fight against Russia in the Balkans
Balkans
The Balkans is a geopolitical and cultural region of southeastern Europe...

 and join his anti-Russian coalition. Napoleon sent General Horace Sebastiani as envoy extraordinary, promising to help the Ottoman Empire recover lost territories. In February 1806, following Napoleon's victory at Austerlitz and the ensuing dismemberment of the Habsburg Empire, the Ottoman Emperor Selim III
Selim III
Selim III was the reform-minded Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1789 to 1807. The Janissaries eventually deposed and imprisoned him, and placed his cousin Mustafa on the throne as Mustafa IV...

 finally recognised Napoleon as Emperor, formally opting for an alliance with France "our sincere and natural ally", and war with Russia and England. A Franco-Persian alliance was also formed, from 1807 to 1809, between Napoleon and the Persian Empire
Qajar dynasty
The Qajar dynasty was an Iranian royal family of Turkic descent who ruled Persia from 1785 to 1925....

 of Fat′h-Ali Shah Qajar, against Russia and Great Britain. The alliance ended when France allied with Russia and turned its focus to European campaigns.

War of the Fourth Coalition




The Fourth Coalition was assembled in 1806, and Napoleon defeated Prussia at the Battle of Jena-Auerstedt
Battle of Jena-Auerstedt
The twin battles of Jena and Auerstedt were fought on 14 October 1806 on the plateau west of the river Saale in today's Germany, between the forces of Napoleon I of France and Frederick William III of Prussia...

 in October. He marched against advancing Russian armies through Poland and was involved in the bloody stalemate of the Battle of Eylau
Battle of Eylau
The Battle of Eylau or Battle of Preussisch-Eylau, 7 and 8 February 1807, was a bloody and inconclusive battle between Napoléon's Grande Armée and a Russian Empire army under Levin August, Count von Bennigsen near the town of Preußisch Eylau in East Prussia. Late in the battle, the Russians...

 on 6 February 1807.

After a decisive victory at Friedland
Battle of Friedland
The Battle of Friedland saw Napoleon I's French army decisively defeat Count von Bennigsen's Russian army about twenty-seven miles southeast of Königsberg...

, he signed the Treaties of Tilsit
Treaties of Tilsit
The Treaties of Tilsit were two agreements signed by Napoleon I of France in the town of Tilsit in July, 1807 in the aftermath of his victory at Friedland. The first was signed on 7 July, between Tsar Alexander I of Russia and Napoleon I of France, when they met on a raft in the middle of the Neman...

; one with Tsar Alexander I of Russia
Alexander I of Russia
Alexander I of Russia , served as Emperor of Russia from 23 March 1801 to 1 December 1825 and the first Russian King of Poland from 1815 to 1825. He was also the first Russian Grand Duke of Finland and Lithuania....

 which divided the continent between the two powers
Power in international relations
Power in international relations is defined in several different ways. Political scientists, historians, and practitioners of international relations have used the following concepts of political power:...

; the other with Prussia which stripped that country of half its territory. Napoleon placed puppet rulers
Puppet state
A puppet state is a nominal sovereign of a state who is de facto controlled by a foreign power. The term refers to a government controlled by the government of another country like a puppeteer controls the strings of a marionette...

 on the thrones of German states, including his brother Jérôme as king of the new Kingdom of Westphalia
Kingdom of Westphalia
The Kingdom of Westphalia was a new country of 2.6 million Germans that existed from 1807-1813. It included of territory in Hesse and other parts of present-day Germany. While formally independent, it was a vassal state of the First French Empire, ruled by Napoleon's brother Jérôme Bonaparte...

. In the French-controlled part of Poland, he established the Duchy of Warsaw
Duchy of Warsaw
The Duchy of Warsaw was a Polish state established by Napoleon I in 1807 from the Polish lands ceded by the Kingdom of Prussia under the terms of the Treaties of Tilsit. The duchy was held in personal union by one of Napoleon's allies, King Frederick Augustus I of Saxony...

 with King Frederick Augustus I of Saxony
Frederick Augustus I of Saxony
Frederick Augustus I was King of Saxony from the House of Wettin. He was also Elector Frederick Augustus III of Saxony and Duke Frederick Augustus I of Warsaw...

 as ruler.

With his Milan
Milan Decree
The Milan Decree was issued on December 17, 1807 by Napoleon I of France to enforce the Berlin Decree of 1806 which had initiated the Continental System. This system was the basis for his plan to defeat the British by waging economic warfare...

 and Berlin Decree
Berlin Decree
The Berlin Decree was issued by Napoleon on November 21, 1806, following the French success against Prussia at the Battle of Jena. The decree forbade the import of British goods into European countries allied with or dependent upon France, and installed the Continental System in Europe.It...

s, Napoleon attempted to enforce a Europe-wide commercial boycott of Britain called the Continental System
Continental System
The Continental System or Continental Blockade was the foreign policy of Napoleon I of France in his struggle against the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland during the Napoleonic Wars. It was a large-scale embargo against British trade, which began on November 21, 1806...

. This act of economic warfare did not succeed, as it encouraged British merchants to smuggle into continental Europe, and Napoleon's exclusively land-based customs enforcers could not stop them.

Peninsular War



Portugal did not comply with the Continental System
Continental System
The Continental System or Continental Blockade was the foreign policy of Napoleon I of France in his struggle against the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland during the Napoleonic Wars. It was a large-scale embargo against British trade, which began on November 21, 1806...

, so in 1807 Napoleon invaded with the support of Spain. Under the pretext of a reinforcement of the Franco-Spanish army occupying Portugal, Napoleon invaded Spain as well, replaced Charles IV
Charles IV of Spain
Charles IV was King of Spain from 14 December 1788 until his abdication on 19 March 1808.-Early life:...

 with his brother Joseph and placed his brother-in-law Joachim Murat in Joseph's stead at Naples. This led to resistance from the Spanish army and civilians in the Dos de Mayo Uprising
Dos de Mayo Uprising
On the second of May , 1808, the people of Madrid rebelled against the occupation of the city by French troops, provoking a brutal repression by the French Imperial forces and triggering the Peninsular War.-Background:...

. Following a French retreat from much of the country, Napoleon took command and defeated the Spanish Army
Spanish Army
The Spanish Army is the terrestrial army of the Spanish Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. It is one of the oldest active armies - dating back to the 15th century.-Introduction:...

. He retook Madrid, then outmanoeuvred a British army sent to support the Spanish and drove it to the coast. Before the Spanish population had been fully subdued, Austria again threatened war, and Napoleon returned to France.

The costly and often brutal Peninsular War continued in Napoleon's absence; in the second Siege of Saragossa
Siege of Saragossa (1809)
The Second Siege of Saragossa was the French capture of the Spanish city of Zaragoza during the Peninsular War.It is particularly noted for its brutality.-Prelude:...

 most of the city was destroyed and over 50,000 people perished. Although Napoleon left 300,000 of his finest troops to battle Spanish guerrillas as well as British and Portuguese forces commanded by Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington
Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington
Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, KG, GCB, GCH, PC, FRS , was an Irish-born British soldier and statesman, and one of the leading military and political figures of the 19th century...

, French control over the peninsula again deteriorated. Following several allied victories, the war concluded after Napoleon's abdication in 1814. Napoleon later described the Peninsular War as central to his final defeat, writing in his memoirs "That unfortunate war destroyed me... All... my disasters are bound up in that fatal knot."

War of the Fifth Coalition and remarriage



In April 1809, Austria abruptly broke its alliance with France, and Napoleon was forced to assume command of forces on the Danube and German fronts. After early successes, the French faced difficulties in crossing the Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

 and suffered a defeat in May at the Battle of Aspern-Essling
Battle of Aspern-Essling
In the Battle of Aspern-Essling , Napoleon attempted a forced crossing of the Danube near Vienna, but the French and their allies were driven back by the Austrians under Archduke Charles...

 near Vienna
Vienna
Vienna is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Austria and one of the nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's primary city, with a population of about 1.723 million , and is by far the largest city in Austria, as well as its cultural, economic, and political centre...

. The Austrians failed to capitalise on the situation and allowed Napoleon's forces to regroup. He defeated the Austrians again at Wagram
Battle of Wagram
The Battle of Wagram was the decisive military engagement of the War of the Fifth Coalition. It took place on the Marchfeld plain, on the north bank of the Danube. An important site of the battle was the village of Deutsch-Wagram, 10 kilometres northeast of Vienna, which would give its name to the...

, and the Treaty of Schönbrunn
Treaty of Schönbrunn
The Treaty of Schönbrunn , sometimes known as the Treaty of Vienna, was signed between France and Austria at the Schönbrunn Palace of Vienna on 14 October 1809. This treaty ended the Fifth Coalition during the Napoleonic Wars...

 was signed between Austria and France.

Britain was the other member of the coalition. In addition to the Iberian Peninsula
Iberian Peninsula
The Iberian Peninsula , sometimes called Iberia, is located in the extreme southwest of Europe and includes the modern-day sovereign states of Spain, Portugal and Andorra, as well as the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar...

, the British planned to open another front in mainland Europe. However, Napoleon was able to rush reinforcements to Antwerp, owing to Britain's inadequately organised Walcheren Campaign
Walcheren Campaign
The Walcheren Campaign was an unsuccessful British expedition to the Netherlands in 1809 intended to open another front in the Austrian Empire's struggle with France during the War of the Fifth Coalition. Around 40,000 soldiers, 15,000 horses together with field artillery and two siege trains...

. He concurrently annexed the Papal States because of the Church's refusal to support the Continental System; Pope Pius VII responded by excommunicating
Excommunication
Excommunication is a religious censure used to deprive, suspend or limit membership in a religious community. The word means putting [someone] out of communion. In some religions, excommunication includes spiritual condemnation of the member or group...

 the emperor. The pope was then abducted by Napoleon's officers, and though Napoleon had not ordered his abduction, he did not order Pius' release. The pope was moved throughout Napoleon's territories, sometimes while ill, and Napoleon sent delegations to pressure him on issues including agreement to a new concordat with France, which Pius refused. In 1810 Napoleon married Archduchess Marie Louise of Austria
Marie Louise, Duchess of Parma
Marie Louise of Austria was the second wife of Napoleon I, Emperor of the French and later Duchess of Parma...

, following his divorce of Joséphine; this further strained his relations with the Church, and thirteen cardinals were imprisoned for non-attendance at the marriage ceremony. The pope remained confined for 5 years and did not return to Rome until May 1814.

Napoleon consented to the ascent to the Swedish throne of Bernadotte
Charles XIV John of Sweden
Charles XIV & III John, also Carl John, Swedish and Norwegian: Karl Johan was King of Sweden and King of Norway from 1818 until his death...

, one of his marshals and a long-term rival of Napoleon's, in November 1810. Napoleon had indulged Bernadotte's indiscretions because he was married to his former fiancée Désirée Clary but came to regret sparing his life when Bernadotte later allied Sweden with France's enemies.

Invasion of Russia



The Congress of Erfurt
Congress of Erfurt
The Congress of Erfurt was the meeting between Emperor Napoleon I of France and Tsar Alexander I of Russia from 27 September to 14 October 1808 intended to reaffirm the alliance concluded the previous year with the Treaty of Tilsit which followed the end of the War of the Fourth...

 sought to preserve the Russo-French alliance, and the leaders had a friendly personal relationship after their first meeting at Tilsit in 1807. By 1811, however, tensions had increased and Alexander was under pressure from the Russian nobility
Russian nobility
The Russian nobility arose in the 14th century and essentially governed Russia until the October Revolution of 1917.The Russian word for nobility, Dvoryanstvo , derives from the Russian word dvor , meaning the Court of a prince or duke and later, of the tsar. A nobleman is called dvoryanin...

 to break off the alliance. An early sign the relationship had deteriorated was the Russian's virtual abandonment of the Continental System, which led Napoleon to threaten Alexander with serious consequences if he formed an alliance with Britain. By 1812, advisers to Alexander suggested the possibility of an invasion of the French Empire and the recapture of Poland. On receipt of intelligence reports on Russia's war preparations, Napoleon expanded his Grande Armée to more than 450,000 men. He ignored repeated advice against an invasion of the Russian heartland and prepared for an offensive campaign; on 23 June 1812 the invasion commenced.

In an attempt to gain increased support from Polish nationalists and patriots, Napoleon termed the war the Second Polish War—the First Polish War had been the Bar Confederation
Bar Confederation
The Bar Confederation was an association of Polish nobles formed at the fortress of Bar in Podolia in 1768 to defend the internal and external independence of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth against Russian influence and against King Stanisław August Poniatowski and Polish reformers who were...

 uprising by Polish nobles against Russia in 1768. Polish patriots wanted the Russian part of Poland to be joined with the Duchy of Warsaw and an independent Poland created. This was rejected by Napoleon, who stated he had promised his ally Austria this would not happen. Napoleon refused to manumit
Manumission
Manumission is the act of a slave owner freeing his or her slaves. In the United States before the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which abolished most slavery, this often happened upon the death of the owner, under conditions in his will.-Motivations:The...

 the Russian serf
SERF
A spin exchange relaxation-free magnetometer is a type of magnetometer developed at Princeton University in the early 2000s. SERF magnetometers measure magnetic fields by using lasers to detect the interaction between alkali metal atoms in a vapor and the magnetic field.The name for the technique...

s because of concerns this might provoke a reaction in his army's rear. The serfs later committed atrocities against French soldiers during France's retreat.


The Russians avoided Napoleon's objective of a decisive engagement and instead retreated deeper into Russia. A brief attempt at resistance was made at Smolensk
Battle of Smolensk (1812)
The Battle of Smolensk, the first major battle of the French invasion of Russia took place on August 16–18, 1812, between 175,000 men of the Grande Armée under Napoleon Bonaparte and 130,000 Russians under Barclay de Tolly, though only about 50,000 and 60,000 respectively were actually engaged...

 in August; the Russians were defeated in a series of battles, and Napoleon resumed his advance. The Russians again avoided battle, although in a few cases this was only achieved because Napoleon uncharacteristically hesitated to attack when the opportunity arose. Owing to the Russian army's scorched earth
Scorched earth
A scorched earth policy is a military strategy or operational method which involves destroying anything that might be useful to the enemy while advancing through or withdrawing from an area...

 tactics, the French found it increasingly difficult to forage food for themselves and their horses.

The Russians eventually offered battle outside Moscow on 7 September: the Battle of Borodino
Battle of Borodino
The Battle of Borodino , fought on September 7, 1812, was the largest and bloodiest single-day action of the French invasion of Russia and all Napoleonic Wars, involving more than 250,000 troops and resulting in at least 70,000 casualties...

 resulted in approximately 44,000 Russian and 35,000 French dead, wounded or captured, and may have been the bloodiest day of battle in history up to that point in time. Although the French had won, the Russian army had accepted, and withstood, the major battle Napoleon had hoped would be decisive. Napoleon's own account was: "The most terrible of all my battles was the one before Moscow. The French showed themselves to be worthy of victory, but the Russians showed themselves worthy of being invincible."

The Russian army withdrew and retreated past Moscow. Napoleon entered the city, assuming its fall would end the war and Alexander would negotiate peace. However, on orders of the city's governor Feodor Rostopchin, rather than capitulation, Moscow was burned. After a month, concerned about loss of control back in France, Napoleon and his army left.

The French suffered greatly in the course of a ruinous retreat, including from the harshness of the Russian Winter
Russian Winter
The Russian Winter is a common explanation for military failures of invaders in Russia. Common nicknames are General Frost, General Winter and General Snow. Another was "General Mud"....

. The Armée had begun as over 400,000 frontline troops, but in the end fewer than 40,000 crossed the Berezina River
Berezina River
The Berezina is a river in Belarus and a tributary of the Dnieper River.The Berezina Preserve by the river is in the UNESCO list of Biosphere Preserves.-Historical significance:...

 in November 1812. The Russians had lost 150,000 in battle and hundreds of thousands of civilians.

War of the Sixth Coalition


There was a lull in fighting over the winter of 1812–13 while both the Russians and the French rebuilt their forces; Napoleon was then able to field 350,000 troops. Heartened by France's loss in Russia, Prussia joined with Austria, Sweden, Russia, Great Britain, Spain, and Portugal in a new coalition. Napoleon assumed command in Germany and inflicted a series of defeats on the Coalition culminating in the Battle of Dresden
Battle of Dresden
The Battle of Dresden was fought on 26–27 August 1813 around Dresden, Germany, resulting in a French victory under Napoleon I against forces of the Sixth Coalition of Austrians, Russians and Prussians under Field Marshal Schwartzenberg. However, Napoleon's victory was not as complete as it could...

 in August 1813. Despite these successes, the numbers continued to mount against Napoleon, and the French army was pinned down by a force twice its size and lost at the Battle of Leipzig
Battle of Leipzig
The Battle of Leipzig or Battle of the Nations, on 16–19 October 1813, was fought by the coalition armies of Russia, Prussia, Austria and Sweden against the French army of Napoleon. Napoleon's army also contained Polish and Italian troops as well as Germans from the Confederation of the Rhine...

. This was by far the largest battle of the Napoleonic Wars and cost more than 90,000 casualties in total.

Napoleon withdrew back into France, his army reduced to 70,000 soldiers and 40,000 stragglers, against more than three times as many Allied troops. The French were surrounded: British armies pressed from the south, and other Coalition forces positioned to attack from the German states. Napoleon won a series of victories in the Six Days' Campaign, though these were not significant enough to turn the tide; Paris was captured by the Coalition in March 1814.

When Napoleon proposed the army march on the capital, his marshals decided to mutiny. On 4 April, led by Ney
Michel Ney
Michel Ney , 1st Duc d'Elchingen, 1st Prince de la Moskowa was a French soldier and military commander during the French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars. He was one of the original 18 Marshals of France created by Napoleon I...

, they confronted Napoleon. Napoleon asserted the army would follow him, and Ney replied the army would follow its generals. Napoleon had no choice but to abdicate. He did so in favour of his son; however, the Allies refused to accept this, and Napoleon was forced to abdicate unconditionally on 11 April.

Exile to Elba



In the Treaty of Fontainebleau
Treaty of Fontainebleau (1814)
The Treaty of Fontainebleau was an agreement established in Fontainebleau on 11 April 1814 between Napoleon Bonaparte and representatives from Austria, Hungary and Bohemia , as well as Russia and Prussia. The treaty was signed at Paris on 11 April by the plenipotentiaries of both sides, and...

, the victors exiled him to Elba
Elba
Elba is a Mediterranean island in Tuscany, Italy, from the coastal town of Piombino. The largest island of the Tuscan Archipelago, Elba is also part of the National Park of the Tuscan Archipelago and the third largest island in Italy after Sicily and Sardinia...

, an island of 12,000 inhabitants in the Mediterranean, 20 km off the Tuscan
Tuscany
Tuscany is a region in Italy. It has an area of about 23,000 square kilometres and a population of about 3.75 million inhabitants. The regional capital is Florence ....

 coast. They gave him sovereignty over the island and allowed him to retain his title of emperor. Napoleon attempted suicide with a pill he had carried since a near-capture by Russians on the retreat from Moscow. Its potency had weakened with age, and he survived to be exiled while his wife and son took refuge in Austria. In the first few months on Elba he created a small navy and army, developed the iron mines, and issued decrees on modern agricultural methods.

Hundred Days




Separated from his wife and son, who had come under Austrian control, cut off from the allowance guaranteed to him by the Treaty of Fontainebleau, and aware of rumours he was about to be banished to a remote island in the Atlantic Ocean, Napoleon escaped from Elba on 26 February 1815. He landed at Golfe-Juan
Golfe-Juan
Golfe-Juan is a seaside resort on France's Côte d'Azur. The distinct local character of Golfe-Juan is indicated by the existence of a demonym, "Golfe-Juanais," which is applied to its inhabitants.-Overview:...

 on the French mainland, two days later. The 5th Regiment was sent to intercept him and made contact just south
Route Napoléon
Route Napoléon is the route taken by Napoléon in 1815 on his return from Elba. It is now a 325-kilometre section of the Route nationale 85.The route begins at Golfe-Juan, where Napoleon disembarked 1 March 1815, beginning the Hundred Days that ended at Waterloo. The road was inaugurated in 1932; it...

 of Grenoble
Grenoble
Grenoble is a city in southeastern France, at the foot of the French Alps where the river Drac joins the Isère. Located in the Rhône-Alpes region, Grenoble is the capital of the department of Isère...

 on 7 March 1815. Napoleon approached the regiment alone, dismounted his horse and, when he was within gunshot range, shouted, "Here I am. Kill your Emperor, if you wish." The soldiers responded with, "Vive L'Empereur!" and marched with Napoleon to Paris; Louis XVIII
Louis XVIII of France
Louis XVIII , known as "the Unavoidable", was King of France and of Navarre from 1814 to 1824, omitting the Hundred Days in 1815...

 fled. On 13 March, the powers at the Congress of Vienna
Congress of Vienna
The Congress of Vienna was a conference of ambassadors of European states chaired by Klemens Wenzel von Metternich, and held in Vienna from September, 1814 to June, 1815. The objective of the Congress was to settle the many issues arising from the French Revolutionary Wars, the Napoleonic Wars,...

 declared Napoleon an outlaw
Outlaw
In historical legal systems, an outlaw is declared as outside the protection of the law. In pre-modern societies, this takes the burden of active prosecution of a criminal from the authorities. Instead, the criminal is withdrawn all legal protection, so that anyone is legally empowered to persecute...

, and four days later Great Britain, Russia, Austria and Prussia bound themselves to each put 150,000 men into the field to end his rule.
Napoleon arrived in Paris on 20 March and governed for a period now called the Hundred Days. By the start of June the armed forces available to him had reached 200,000, and he decided to go on the offensive to attempt to drive a wedge between the oncoming British and Prussian armies. The French Army of the North crossed the frontier into the United Kingdom of the Netherlands
United Kingdom of the Netherlands
United Kingdom of the Netherlands is the unofficial name used to refer to Kingdom of the Netherlands during the period after it was first created from part of the First French Empire and before the new kingdom of Belgium split out in 1830...

, in modern-day Belgium.

Napoleon's forces fought the allies, led by Wellington and Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher
Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher
Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher, Fürst von Wahlstatt , Graf , later elevated to Fürst von Wahlstatt, was a Prussian Generalfeldmarschall who led his army against Napoleon I at the Battle of the Nations at Leipzig in 1813 and at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 with the Duke of Wellington.He is...

, at the Battle of Waterloo
Battle of Waterloo
The Battle of Waterloo was fought on Sunday 18 June 1815 near Waterloo in present-day Belgium, then part of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands...

 on 18 June 1815. Wellington's army withstood repeated attacks by the French and drove them from the field while the Prussians arrived in force and broke through Napoleon's right flank. Napoleon was defeated because he had to fight two armies with one, attacking an army in an excellent defensive position through wet and muddy terrain. His health that day may have affected his presence and vigour on the field, added to the fact that his subordinates may have let him down. Despite this, Napoleon came very close to clinching victory. Outnumbered, the French army left the battlefield in disorder, which allowed Coalition forces to enter France and restore Louis XVIII to the French throne.

Off the port of Rochefort, Charente-Maritime
Rochefort, Charente-Maritime
Rochefort is a commune in southwestern France, a port on the Charente estuary. It is a sub-prefecture of the Charente-Maritime department.-History:...

, after consideration of an escape to the United States, Napoleon formally demanded political asylum from the British Captain Frederick Maitland on on 15 July 1815.

Exile on Saint Helena



Napoleon was imprisoned and then exiled to the island of Saint Helena
Saint Helena
Saint Helena , named after St Helena of Constantinople, is an island of volcanic origin in the South Atlantic Ocean. It is part of the British overseas territory of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha which also includes Ascension Island and the islands of Tristan da Cunha...

 in the Atlantic Ocean, 1,870 km from the west coast of Africa. In his first two months there, he lived in a pavilion on the Briars estate, which belonged to a William Balcombe. Napoleon became friendly with his family, especially his younger daughter Lucia Elizabeth who later wrote Recollections of the Emperor Napoleon. This friendship ended in 1818 when British authorities became suspicious that Balcombe had acted as an intermediary between Napoleon and Paris and dismissed him from the island.

Napoleon moved to Longwood House
Longwood House
Longwood House was the residence of Napoleon I during his exile on the island of Saint Helena, from 10 December 1815 until his death on 5 May 1821. It is situated on a windswept plain some from Jamestown. Formerly the summer residence of the Lieutenant Governor, it was converted for the use of...

 in December 1815; it had fallen into disrepair, and the location was damp, windswept and unhealthy. The Times
The Times
The Times is a British daily national newspaper, first published in London in 1785 under the title The Daily Universal Register . The Times and its sister paper The Sunday Times are published by Times Newspapers Limited, a subsidiary since 1981 of News International...

 published articles insinuating the British government was trying to hasten his death, and he often complained of the living conditions in letters to the governor and his custodian, Hudson Lowe
Hudson Lowe
Sir Hudson Lowe KCB, GCMG was an Anglo-Irish soldier and colonial administrator who is best known for his time as Governor of St Helena where he was the "gaoler" of Napoleon Bonaparte.-Early life and career:...

. With a small cadre of followers, Napoleon dictated his memoirs and criticised his captors—particularly Lowe. Lowe's treatment of Napoleon is regarded as poor by historians such as Frank McLynn. Lowe exacerbated a difficult situation through measures including a reduction in Napoleon's expenditure, a rule that no gifts could be delivered to him if they mentioned his imperial status, and a document his supporters had to sign that guaranteed they would stay with the prisoner indefinitely.
In 1818, The Times reported a false rumour of Napoleon's escape and said the news had been greeted by spontaneous illuminations in London. There was sympathy for him in the British Parliament: Lord Holland
Henry Vassall-Fox, 3rd Baron Holland
Henry Richard Vassall-Fox, 3rd Baron Holland PC was an English politician and a major figure in Whig politics in the early 19th century...

 gave a speech which demanded the prisoner be treated with no unnecessary harshness. Napoleon kept himself informed of the events through The Times and hoped for release in the event that Holland became prime minister. He also enjoyed the support of Lord Cochrane
Thomas Cochrane, 10th Earl of Dundonald
Admiral Thomas Cochrane, 10th Earl of Dundonald, 1st Marquess of Maranhão, GCB, ODM , styled Lord Cochrane between 1778 and 1831, was a senior British naval flag officer and radical politician....

, who was involved in Chile's and Brazil's struggle for independence and wanted to rescue Napoleon and help him set up a new empire in South America, a scheme frustrated by Napoleon's death in 1821. There were other plots to rescue Napoleon from captivity including one from Texas
Texas
Texas is the second largest U.S. state by both area and population, and the largest state by area in the contiguous United States.The name, based on the Caddo word "Tejas" meaning "friends" or "allies", was applied by the Spanish to the Caddo themselves and to the region of their settlement in...

, where exiled soldiers from the Grande Armée wanted a resurrection of the Napoleonic Empire in America. There was even a plan to rescue him with a primitive submarine
Submarine
A submarine is a watercraft capable of independent operation below the surface of the water. It differs from a submersible, which has more limited underwater capability...

. For Lord Byron, Napoleon was the epitome of the Romantic hero, the persecuted, lonely and flawed genius. The news that Napoleon had taken up gardening at Longwood also appealed to more domestic British sensibilities.

Death



In February 1821, his health began to fail rapidly, and on 3 May two British physicians, who had recently arrived, attended on him but could only recommend palliatives. He died two days later, after confession, Extreme Unction
Anointing of the Sick (Catholic Church)
Anointing of the Sick is a sacrament of the Catholic Church that is administered to Catholics who because of sickness or old age are in danger of death, even if the danger is not proximate...

 and Viaticum
Viaticum
Viaticum is a term used especially in the Roman Catholic Church for the Eucharist administered, with or without anointing of the sick, to a person who is dying, and is thus a part of the last rites...

 in the presence of Father Ange Vignali. His last words were, "France, armée, tête d'armée, Joséphine."("France, army, head of the army, Joséphine.") Napoleon's original death mask
Death mask
In Western cultures a death mask is a wax or plaster cast made of a person’s face following death. Death masks may be mementos of the dead, or be used for creation of portraits...

 was created around 6 May, though it is not clear which doctor created it. In his will, he had asked to be buried on the banks of the Seine
Seine
The Seine is a -long river and an important commercial waterway within the Paris Basin in the north of France. It rises at Saint-Seine near Dijon in northeastern France in the Langres plateau, flowing through Paris and into the English Channel at Le Havre . It is navigable by ocean-going vessels...

, but the British governor said he should be buried on St. Helena, in the Valley of the Willows. Hudson Lowe insisted the inscription should read 'Napoleon Bonaparte'; Montholon
Charles Tristan, marquis de Montholon
Charles Tristan, marquis de Montholon was a French general during the Napoleonic Wars. Serving throughout, he subsequently chose to go into exile on the British governed island of St Helena with the ex-emperor after Napoleon's second abdication.It has been alleged that he poisoned Napoleon.-Early...

 and Bertrand wanted the Imperial title 'Napoleon' as royalty were signed by their first names only. As a result the tomb was left nameless.
In 1840, Louis Philippe I obtained permission from the British to return Napoleon's remains to France. The remains were transported aboard the frigate Belle-Poule
French ship Belle Poule (1828)
The Belle-Poule was a 60-gun frigate of the French Navy, famous for bringing the remains of Napoléon from Saint Helena back to France in what became known as the retour des cendres....

, which had been painted black for the occasion, and on 29 November she arrived in Cherbourg. The remains were transferred to the steamship Normandie, which transported them to Le Havre
Le Havre
Le Havre is a city in the Seine-Maritime department of the Haute-Normandie region in France. It is situated in north-western France, on the right bank of the mouth of the river Seine on the English Channel. Le Havre is the most populous commune in the Haute-Normandie region, although the total...

, up the Seine to Rouen
Rouen
Rouen , in northern France on the River Seine, is the capital of the Haute-Normandie region and the historic capital city of Normandy. Once one of the largest and most prosperous cities of medieval Europe , it was the seat of the Exchequer of Normandy in the Middle Ages...

 and on to Paris. On 15 December, a state funeral
State funeral
A state funeral is a public funeral ceremony, observing the strict rules of protocol, held to honor heads of state or other important people of national significance. State funerals usually include much pomp and ceremony as well as religious overtones and distinctive elements of military tradition...

 was held. The hearse proceeded from the Arc de Triomphe down the Champs-Élysées
Champs-Élysées
The Avenue des Champs-Élysées is a prestigious avenue in Paris, France. With its cinemas, cafés, luxury specialty shops and clipped horse-chestnut trees, the Avenue des Champs-Élysées is one of the most famous streets and one of the most expensive strip of real estate in the world. The name is...

, across the Place de la Concorde
Place de la Concorde
The Place de la Concorde in area, it is the largest square in the French capital. It is located in the city's eighth arrondissement, at the eastern end of the Champs-Élysées.- History :...

 to the Esplanade des Invalides
Les Invalides
Les Invalides , officially known as L'Hôtel national des Invalides , is a complex of buildings in the 7th arrondissement of Paris, France, containing museums and monuments, all relating to the military history of France, as well as a hospital and a retirement home for war veterans, the building's...

 and then to the cupola in St Jérôme's Chapel, where it stayed until the tomb designed by Louis Visconti was completed. In 1861, Napoleon's remains were entombed in a porphyry
Porphyry (geology)
Porphyry is a variety of igneous rock consisting of large-grained crystals, such as feldspar or quartz, dispersed in a fine-grained feldspathic matrix or groundmass. The larger crystals are called phenocrysts...

 sarcophagus in the crypt under the dome at Les Invalides.

Cause of death


Napoleon's physician, François Carlo Antommarchi
François Carlo Antommarchi
Dr François Carlo Antommarchi was Napoleon's physician from 1818 to his death in 1821....

, led the autopsy, which found the cause of death to be stomach cancer
Stomach cancer
Gastric cancer, commonly referred to as stomach cancer, can develop in any part of the stomach and may spread throughout the stomach and to other organs; particularly the esophagus, lungs, lymph nodes, and the liver...

. Antommarchi did not, however, sign the official report. Napoleon's father had died of stomach cancer though this was seemingly unknown at the time of the autopsy. Antommarchi found evidence of a stomach ulcer, and it was the most convenient explanation for the British who wanted to avoid criticism over their care of the emperor.

In 1955, the diaries of Napoleon's valet, Louis Marchand, appeared in print. His description of Napoleon in the months before his death led Sten Forshufvud
Sten Forshufvud
Sten Forshufvud was a Swedish dentist and expert on poisons who formulated and supported the controversial theory that Napoleon was assassinated by a member of his entourage while in exile. He wrote a book in Swedish about this in 1961...

 to put forward other causes for his death, including deliberate arsenic poisoning
Arsenic poisoning
Arsenic poisoning is a medical condition caused by increased levels of the element arsenic in the body. Arsenic interferes with cellular longevity by allosteric inhibition of an essential metabolic enzyme...

, in a 1961 paper in Nature
Nature (journal)
Nature, first published on 4 November 1869, is ranked the world's most cited interdisciplinary scientific journal by the Science Edition of the 2010 Journal Citation Reports...

. Arsenic was used as a poison during the era because it was undetectable when administered over a long period. Forshufvud, in a 1978 book with Ben Weider
Ben Weider
Benjamin "Ben" Weider, was the co-founder of the International Federation of BodyBuilding & Fitness along with brother Joe Weider...

, noted the emperor's body was found to be remarkably well-preserved when moved in 1840. Arsenic is a strong preservative, and therefore this supported the poisoning hypothesis. Forshufvud and Weider observed that Napoleon had attempted to quench abnormal thirst by drinking high levels of orgeat syrup
Orgeat syrup
Orgeat syrup is a sweet syrup made from almonds, sugar and rose water or orange flower water. It was, however, originally made with a barley-almond blend...

 that contained cyanide compounds in the almonds used for flavouring. They maintained that the potassium tartrate
Potassium tartrate
Potassium tartrate, dipotassium tartrate or argol has formula K2C4H4O6. It is the potassium salt of tartaric acid. It is often confused with potassium bitartrate, also known as cream of tartar...

 used in his treatment prevented his stomach from expellation of these compounds and that the thirst was a symptom of poisoning. Their hypothesis was that the calomel given to Napoleon became an overdose, which killed him and left behind extensive tissue
Tissue (biology)
Tissue is a cellular organizational level intermediate between cells and a complete organism. A tissue is an ensemble of cells, not necessarily identical, but from the same origin, that together carry out a specific function. These are called tissues because of their identical functioning...

 damage. A 2007 article stated the type of arsenic found in Napoleon's hair shafts was mineral type, the most toxic, and according to toxicologist Patrick Kintz, this supported the conclusion his death was murder.

The wallpaper used in Longwood contained a high level of arsenic compound used for colouring by British manufacturers. The adhesive, which in the cooler British environment was innocuous, may have grown mould in the more humid climate and emitted the poisonous gas arsine
Arsine
Arsine is the chemical compound with the formula AsH3. This flammable, pyrophoric, and highly toxic gas is one of the simplest compounds of arsenic...

. This theory has been ruled out as it does not explain the arsenic absorption patterns found in other analyses.

There have been modern studies which have supported the original autopsy finding. Researchers, in a 2008 study, analysed samples of Napoleon's hair from throughout his life, and from his family and other contemporaries. All samples had high levels of arsenic, approximately 100 times higher than the current average. According to these researchers, Napoleon's body was already heavily contaminated with arsenic as a boy, and the high arsenic concentration in his hair was not caused by intentional poisoning; people were constantly exposed to arsenic from glues and dyes throughout their lives. 2007 and 2008 studies dismissed evidence of arsenic poisoning, and confirmed evidence of peptic ulcer and gastric cancer as the cause of death.

Marriages and children



Napoleon married Joséphine de Beauharnais
Joséphine de Beauharnais
Joséphine de Beauharnais was the first wife of Napoléon Bonaparte, and thus the first Empress of the French. Her first husband Alexandre de Beauharnais had been guillotined during the Reign of Terror, and she had been imprisoned in the Carmes prison until her release five days after Alexandre's...

 in 1796, when he was twenty-six; she was a thirty-two-year-old widow whose first husband had been executed during the Revolution. Until she met Bonaparte, she had been known as 'Rose', a name which he disliked. He called her 'Joséphine' instead, and she went by this name henceforth. Bonaparte often sent her love letters while on his campaigns. He formally adopted her son Eugène
Eugène de Beauharnais
Eugène Rose de Beauharnais, Prince Français, Prince of Venice, Viceroy of the Kingdom of Italy, Hereditary Grand Duke of Frankfurt, 1st Duke of Leuchtenberg and 1st Prince of Eichstätt ad personam was the first child and only son of Alexandre, Vicomte de Beauharnais and Joséphine Tascher de la...

 and cousin Stéphanie
Stéphanie de Beauharnais
Stéphanie, Grand Duchess of Baden was the consort of Karl, Grand Duke of Baden.-Biography:...

 and arranged dynastic marriages for them. Joséphine had her daughter Hortense
Hortense de Beauharnais
Hortense Eugénie Cécile Bonaparte , Queen Consort of Holland, was the stepdaughter of Emperor Napoleon I, being the daughter of his first wife, Joséphine de Beauharnais. She later became the wife of the former's brother, Louis Bonaparte, King of Holland, and the mother of Napoleon III, Emperor of...

 marry Napoleon's brother Louis
Louis Bonaparte
Louis Napoléon Bonaparte, Prince Français, Comte de Saint-Leu , King of Holland , was the fifth surviving child and the fourth surviving son of Carlo Buonaparte and Letizia Ramolino...

.

Joséphine had lovers, including a Hussar
Hussar
Hussar refers to a number of types of light cavalry which originated in Hungary in the 14th century, tracing its roots from Serbian medieval cavalry tradition, brought to Hungary in the course of the Serb migrations, which began in the late 14th century....

 lieutenant, Hippolyte Charles, during Napoleon's Italian campaign. Napoleon learnt the full extent of her affair with Charles while in Egypt, and a letter he wrote to his brother Joseph regarding the subject was intercepted by the British. The letter appeared in the London and Paris presses, much to Napoleon's embarrassment. Napoleon had his own affairs too: during the Egyptian campaign he took Pauline Bellisle Foures, the wife of a junior officer, as his mistress. She became known as Cleopatra after the Ancient Egypt
Ancient Egypt
Ancient Egypt was an ancient civilization of Northeastern Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in what is now the modern country of Egypt. Egyptian civilization coalesced around 3150 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under the first pharaoh...

ian ruler.

While Napoleon's mistresses had children by him, Joséphine did not produce an heir, possibly because of either the stresses of her imprisonment during the Reign of Terror
Reign of Terror
The Reign of Terror , also known simply as The Terror , was a period of violence that occurred after the onset of the French Revolution, incited by conflict between rival political factions, the Girondins and the Jacobins, and marked by mass executions of "enemies of...

 or an abortion she may have had in her twenties. Napoleon ultimately chose divorce so he could remarry in search of an heir. In March 1810, he married Marie Louise
Marie Louise, Duchess of Parma
Marie Louise of Austria was the second wife of Napoleon I, Emperor of the French and later Duchess of Parma...

, Archduchess of Austria, and a great niece of Marie Antoinette
Marie Antoinette
Marie Antoinette ; 2 November 1755 – 16 October 1793) was an Archduchess of Austria and the Queen of France and of Navarre. She was the fifteenth and penultimate child of Holy Roman Empress Maria Theresa and Holy Roman Emperor Francis I....

 by proxy
Proxy marriage
A proxy wedding or is a wedding in which the bride or groom is not physically present, usually being represented instead by another person...

; thus he had married into a German royal and imperial family. They remained married until his death, though she did not join him in exile on Elba and thereafter never saw her husband again. The couple had one child, Napoleon Francis Joseph Charles (1811–1832), known from birth as the King of Rome
King of the Romans
King of the Romans was the title used by the ruler of the Holy Roman Empire following his election to the office by the princes of the Kingdom of Germany...

. He became Napoleon II in 1814 and reigned for only two weeks. He was awarded the title of the Duke of Reichstadt in 1818 and died of tuberculosis
Tuberculosis
Tuberculosis, MTB, or TB is a common, and in many cases lethal, infectious disease caused by various strains of mycobacteria, usually Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Tuberculosis usually attacks the lungs but can also affect other parts of the body...

 aged 21, with no children.
Napoleon acknowledged two illegitimate children: Charles Léon
Charles Léon
Charles, Count Léon was the illegitimate son of Emperor Napoleon I of France and Louise Catherine Eléonore Denuelle de la Plaigne...

 (1806–1881) by Eléonore Denuelle de La Plaigne, and Count Alexandre Joseph Colonna-Walewski (1810–1868) by Countess Marie Walewska. He may have had further unacknowledged illegitimate offspring as well, such as Karl Eugin von Mühlfeld by Victoria Kraus; Hélène Napoleone Bonaparte
Hélène Napoleone Bonaparte
Hélène Napoleone Bonaparte was the daughter of Albine de Montholon. Her father was either her mother's husband, Charles Tristan, marquis de Montholon, or Napoleon I. Albine became pregnant on the way to Saint Helena; Napoleon was to be exiled. As she had two partners at the time – her husband...

 (1816–1910) by Albine de Montholon
Albine de Montholon
Albine de Montholon was reputed to be the mistress of Napoleon I during his final years of exile on Saint Helena and the wife of Charles Tristan, marquis de Montholon, Napoleon's devoted companion and confidant....

; and Jules Barthélemy-Saint-Hilaire
Jules Barthélemy-Saint-Hilaire
Jules Barthélemy-Saint-Hilaire was a French philosopher, journalist, statesman, and possible illegitimate son of Napoleon I of France.- Biography :...

, whose mother remains unknown.

Napoleon and religions


Napoleon's baptism was held in Ajaccio
Ajaccio
Ajaccio , is a commune on the island of Corsica in France. It is the capital and largest city of the region of Corsica and the prefecture of the department of Corse-du-Sud....

 on 21 July 1771; he was piously raised and received a Christian education; however, his teachers failed to give faith to the young boy. As an adult, Napoleon was described as a "deist with involuntary respect and fondness for Catholicism." He never believed in a living God; Napoleon's deity was an absent and distant God, but he pragmatically considered organised religions as key elements of social order
Social order
Social order is a concept used in sociology, history and other social sciences. It refers to a set of linked social structures, social institutions and social practices which conserve, maintain and enforce "normal" ways of relating and behaving....

, and especially Catholicism, whose, according to him, "splendorous ceremonies and sublime moral better act over the imagination of the people than other religions" Napoleon had a civil marriage
Civil marriage
Civil marriage is marriage performed by a government official and not a religious organization.-History:Every country maintaining a population registry of its residents keeps track of marital status, and most countries believe that it is their responsibility to register married couples. Most...

 with Joséphine de Beauharnais, without religious ceremony, on 9 March 1796. During the campaign in Egypt, Napoleon showed much tolerance towards religion for a revolutionary general, holding discussions with muslim scholar
Ulama
-In Islam:* Ulema, also transliterated "ulama", a community of legal scholars of Islam and its laws . See:**Nahdlatul Ulama **Darul-uloom Nadwatul Ulama **Jamiatul Ulama Transvaal**Jamiat ul-Ulama -Other:...

s and ordering religious celebrations, but General Dupuy
Dominique Martin Dupuy
Dominique Martin Dupuy was a French revolutionary general of brigade.The son of a baker from Toulouse, he engaged in the Régiment d'Artois before the French Revolution. In 1791, he was volunteer in the 1st battalion of the Haute-Garonne regiment, where he was soon elected junior lieutenant-colonel...

, who accompanied Napoleon, revealed, shortly after Pope Pius VI
Pope Pius VI
Pope Pius VI , born Count Giovanni Angelo Braschi, was Pope from 1775 to 1799.-Early years:Braschi was born in Cesena...

's death, the political reasons for such behaviour: "We are fooling Egyptians with our pretended interest for their religion; neither Bonaparte nor we believe in this religion more than we did in Pius the Defunct
Pope Pius VI
Pope Pius VI , born Count Giovanni Angelo Braschi, was Pope from 1775 to 1799.-Early years:Braschi was born in Cesena...

's one". His religious opportunism is epitomized in his famous quote : "It is by making myself Catholic that I brought peace to Brittany
Chouannerie
The Chouannerie was a royalist uprising in twelve of the western departements of France, particularly in the provinces of Brittany and Maine, against the French Revolution, the First French Republic, and even, with its headquarters in London rather than France, for a time, under the Empire...

 and Vendée. It is by making myself Italian that I won minds in Italy. It is by making myself a Moslem that I established myself in Egypt. If I governed a nation of Jews, I should reestablish the Temple of Solomon." Napoleon crowned himself Emperor Napoleon I on 2 December 1804 at Notre Dame de Paris
Notre Dame de Paris
Notre Dame de Paris , also known as Notre Dame Cathedral, is a Gothic, Roman Catholic cathedral on the eastern half of the Île de la Cité in the fourth arrondissement of Paris, France. It is the cathedral of the Catholic Archdiocese of Paris: that is, it is the church that contains the cathedra of...

 with the benediction of Pope Pius VII
Pope Pius VII
Pope Pius VII , born Barnaba Niccolò Maria Luigi Chiaramonti, was a monk, theologian and bishop, who reigned as Pope from 14 March 1800 to 20 August 1823.-Early life:...

. The 1 April 1810, Napoleon religiously married the Austrian princess Marie Louise
Marie Louise, Duchess of Parma
Marie Louise of Austria was the second wife of Napoleon I, Emperor of the French and later Duchess of Parma...

. In a private discussion with general Gourgaud during his exile on Saint Helena, Napoleon expressed materialistic
Materialism
In philosophy, the theory of materialism holds that the only thing that exists is matter; that all things are composed of material and all phenomena are the result of material interactions. In other words, matter is the only substance...

 views on the origin of man, and doubted the divinity of Jesus, stating that it is absurd to believe that Socrates
Socrates
Socrates was a classical Greek Athenian philosopher. Credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy, he is an enigmatic figure known chiefly through the accounts of later classical writers, especially the writings of his students Plato and Xenophon, and the plays of his contemporary ...

, Plato
Plato
Plato , was a Classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the...

, Muhammad
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

 and the Anglicans
Church of England
The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England and the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The church considers itself within the tradition of Western Christianity and dates its formal establishment principally to the mission to England by St...

 should be damned
Damnation
Damnation is the concept of everlasting divine punishment and/or disgrace, especially the punishment for sin as threatened by God . A damned being "in damnation" is said to be either in Hell, or living in a state wherein they are divorced from Heaven and/or in a state of disgrace from God's favor...

 for not being Roman Catholics. However, Napoleon was anointed
Anointing of the Sick
Anointing of the Sick, known also by other names, is distinguished from other forms of religious anointing or "unction" in that it is intended, as its name indicates, for the benefit of a sick person...

 by a priest before his death.

Image


Napoleon has become a worldwide cultural icon who symbolises military genius and political power. Martin van Creveld
Martin van Creveld
Martin Levi van Creveld is an Israeli military historian and theorist.Van Creveld was born in the Netherlands in the city of Rotterdam, and has lived in Israel since shortly after his birth. He holds degrees from the London School of Economics and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he has...

 described him as "the most competent human being who ever lived". Since his death, many towns, streets, ships, and even cartoon characters have been named after him. He has been portrayed in hundreds of films and discussed in hundreds of thousands of books and articles.

During the Napoleonic Wars he was taken seriously by the British press as a dangerous tyrant
Tyrant
A tyrant was originally one who illegally seized and controlled a governmental power in a polis. Tyrants were a group of individuals who took over many Greek poleis during the uprising of the middle classes in the sixth and seventh centuries BC, ousting the aristocratic governments.Plato and...

, poised to invade. A nursery rhyme
Nursery rhyme
The term nursery rhyme is used for "traditional" poems for young children in Britain and many other countries, but usage only dates from the 19th century and in North America the older ‘Mother Goose Rhymes’ is still often used.-Lullabies:...

 warned children that Bonaparte ravenously ate naughty people; the 'bogeyman
Bogeyman
A bogeyman is an amorphous imaginary being used by adults to frighten children into compliant behaviour...

'. The British Tory press sometimes depicted Napoleon as much smaller than average height
Human height
Human height is the distance from the bottom of the feet to the top of the head in a human body standing erect.When populations share genetic background and environmental factors, average height is frequently characteristic within the group...

, and this image persists. Confusion about his height also results from the difference between the French pouce
French units of measurement
France has a unique history of units of measurement due to radical attempts to adopt a metric system following the French Revolution.In the Ancien régime, before 1795, France used a system of measures that had many of the characteristics of the modern Imperial System of units...

 and British inch—2.71 and 2.54 cm respectively; he was about 1.7 metre tall, average height for the period.

In 1908 psychologist Alfred Adler
Alfred Adler
Alfred Adler was an Austrian medical doctor, psychotherapist, and founder of the school of individual psychology. In collaboration with Sigmund Freud and a small group of Freud's colleagues, Adler was among the co-founders of the psychoanalytic movement as a core member of the Vienna...

 cited Napoleon to describe an inferiority complex
Inferiority complex
An inferiority complex, in the fields of psychology and psychoanalysis, is a feeling that one is inferior to others in some way. Such feelings can arise from an imagined or actual inferiority in the afflicted person...

 in which short people adopt an over-aggressive behaviour to compensate for lack of height; this inspired the term Napoleon complex
Napoleon complex
Napoleon complex is an informal term describing an alleged type of inferiority complex which is said to affect some people, especially men, who are short in stature. The term is also used more generally to describe people who are driven by a perceived handicap to overcompensate in other aspects of...

. The stock character
Stock character
A Stock character is a fictional character based on a common literary or social stereotype. Stock characters rely heavily on cultural types or names for their personality, manner of speech, and other characteristics. In their most general form, stock characters are related to literary archetypes,...

 of Napoleon is a comically short "petty tyrant" and this has become a cliché in popular culture. He is often portrayed wearing a large bicorne
Bicorne
The bicorne or bicorn is an archaic form of hat widely adopted in the 1790s as an item of uniform by European and American military and naval officers...

 hat with a hand-in-waistcoat
Hand-in-waistcoat
The hand-in-waistcoat was a gesture commonly found in men's portraiture during the 18th and 19th centuries. Napoleon I of France was most well known for the gesture and is readily associated with this gesture because of the several portraits made by his artist, Jacques-Louis David...

 gesture—a reference to the 1812 painting by Jacques-Louis David.

Warfare




In the field of military organisation, Napoleon borrowed from previous theorists such as Jacques Antoine Hippolyte, Comte de Guibert
Jacques Antoine Hippolyte, Comte de Guibert
Jacques-Antoine-Hippolyte, Comte de Guibert was a French general and military writer. Born at Montabaun, he accompanied his father in wars before he became a general himself...

, and from the reforms of preceding French governments, and then developed much of what was already in place. He continued the policy, which emerged from the Revolution, of promotion based primarily on merit. Corps
Corps
A corps is either a large formation, or an administrative grouping of troops within an armed force with a common function such as Artillery or Signals representing an arm of service...

 replaced divisions as the largest army units, mobile artillery
Self-propelled artillery
Self-propelled artillery vehicles are combat vehicles armed with artillery. Within the term are covered self-propelled guns and rocket artillery...

 was integrated into reserve batteries, the staff system became more fluid and cavalry returned as an important formation in French military doctrine. These methods are now referred to as essential features of Napoleonic warfare. Though he consolidated the practice of modern conscription
Conscription
Conscription is the compulsory enlistment of people in some sort of national service, most often military service. Conscription dates back to antiquity and continues in some countries to the present day under various names...

 introduced by the Directory, one of the restored monarchy's first acts was to end it.

His opponents learned from Napoleon's innovations. The increased importance of artillery after 1807 stemmed from his creation of a highly mobile artillery force, the growth in artillery numbers, and changes in artillery practices. As a result of these factors, Napoleon, rather than relying on infantry to wear away the enemy's defenses, now could use massed artillery as a spearhead to pound a break in the enemy's line that was then exploited by supporting infantry and cavalry. McConachy rejects the alternative theory that growing reliance on artillery by the French army beginning in 1807 was an outgrowth of the declining quality of the French infantry and, later, France's inferiority in cavalry numbers.
Weapons and other kinds of military technology remained largely static through the Revolutionary and Napoleonic eras, but 18th century operational mobility underwent significant change. Napoleon's biggest influence was in the conduct of warfare. Antoine-Henri Jomini
Antoine-Henri Jomini
Antoine-Henri, baron Jomini was a general in the French and later in the Russian service, and one of the most celebrated writers on the Napoleonic art of war...

 explained Napoleon's methods in a widely used textbook that influenced all European and American armies. Napoleon was regarded by the influential military theorist Carl von Clausewitz
Carl von Clausewitz
Carl Philipp Gottfried von Clausewitz was a Prussian soldier and German military theorist who stressed the moral and political aspects of war...

 as a genius in the operational art of war, and historians rank him as a great military commander. Wellington, when asked who was the greatest general of the day, answered: "In this age, in past ages, in any age, Napoleon."

Napoleon suffered various military setbacks however: Aspern-Essling in 1809, Russia in 1812 and at Leipzig in 1813. He also had to abandon his forces in Egypt — the result of strategic defeat rather than any reverse in pitched battle. With the exception of two small scale battles in Italy, Napoleon was not defeated in a field battle without being heavily outnumbered.

Under Napoleon, a new emphasis towards the destruction, not just outmanoeuvring, of enemy armies emerged. Invasions of enemy territory occurred over broader fronts which made wars costlier and more decisive. The political impact of war increased significantly; defeat for a European power meant more than the loss of isolated enclaves. Near-Carthaginian peace
Carthaginian peace
Carthaginian Peace can refer to two things: either the peace imposed on Carthage by Rome in 146 BC, whereby the Romans systematically burned Carthage to the ground, or the imposition of a very brutal 'peace' in general.-Origin:...

s intertwined whole national efforts, intensifying the Revolutionary phenomenon of total war.

Bonapartism



In French political history, Bonapartism has two meanings. The term can refer to people who restored the French Empire under the House of Bonaparte including Napoleon's Corsican family and his nephew Louis. Napoleon left a Bonapartist dynasty which ruled France again; Louis became Napoleon III, Emperor of the Second French Empire
Second French Empire
The Second French Empire or French Empire was the Imperial Bonapartist regime of Napoleon III from 1852 to 1870, between the Second Republic and the Third Republic, in France.-Rule of Napoleon III:...

 and was the first President of France. In a wider sense, Bonapartism refers to a broad centrist or center-right political movement that advocates the idea of a strong and centralised state
Centralized government
A centralized or centralised government is one in which power or legal authority is exerted or coordinated by a de facto political executive to which federal states, local authorities, and smaller units are considered subject...

, based on populism
Populism
Populism can be defined as an ideology, political philosophy, or type of discourse. Generally, a common theme compares "the people" against "the elite", and urges social and political system changes. It can also be defined as a rhetorical style employed by members of various political or social...

.

Criticism



Napoleon ended lawlessness and disorder in post-Revolutionary France. He was, however, considered a tyrant and usurper
Usurper
Usurper is a derogatory term used to describe either an illegitimate or controversial claimant to the power; often, but not always in a monarchy, or a person who succeeds in establishing himself as a monarch without inheriting the throne, or any other person exercising authority unconstitutionally...

 by his opponents.

His critics charge that he was not significantly troubled when faced with the prospect of war and death for thousands, turned his search for undisputed rule into a series of conflicts throughout Europe and ignored treaties and conventions alike. His role in the Haitian Revolution
Haitian Revolution
The Haitian Revolution was a period of conflict in the French colony of Saint-Domingue, which culminated in the elimination of slavery there and the founding of the Haitian republic...

 and decision to reinstate slavery in France's oversea colonies are controversial and have an impact on his reputation. Napoleon institutionalised plunder of conquered territories: French museums contain art stolen by Napoleon's forces from across Europe. Artefacts were brought to the Musée du Louvre for a grand central museum; his example would later serve as inspiration for more notorious imitators. He was compared to Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party , commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). He was Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945, and head of state from 1934 to 1945...

 most famously by the historian Pieter Geyl
Pieter Geyl
Pieter Catharinus Arie Geyl was a Dutch historian, well-known for his studies in early modern Dutch history and in historiography.-Background:...

 in 1947. David G. Chandler
David G. Chandler
David G. Chandler was a British historian whose study focused on the Napoleonic era.As a young man he served briefly in the army, reaching the rank of captain, and in later life he taught at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. Oxford University awarded him the D. Litt. in 1991...

, historian of Napoleonic warfare, wrote that, "Nothing could be more degrading to the former and more flattering to the latter."

Critics argue Napoleon's true legacy must reflect the loss of status for France and needless deaths brought by his rule: historian Victor Davis Hanson
Victor Davis Hanson
Victor Davis Hanson is an American military historian, columnist, political essayist and former classics professor, notable as a scholar of ancient warfare. He has been a commentator on modern warfare and contemporary politics for National Review and other media outlets...

 writes, "After all, the military record is unquestioned—17 years of wars, perhaps six million Europeans dead
Napoleonic Wars casualties
The casualties of the Napoleonic Wars , direct and indirect, break down as follows:Note that deaths listed include being killed in action as well as deaths from other causes, such as: from disease; from wounds; of starvation; from exposure; of drowning; from friendly fire; as a result of...

, France bankrupt, her overseas colonies lost." McLynn notes that, "He can be viewed as the man who set back European economic life for a generation by the dislocating impact of his wars. However, Vincent Cronin
Vincent Cronin
Vincent Archibald Patrick Cronin, FRSL was a British historical, cultural, and biographical writer, best-known for his biographies of Louis XIV, Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, Catherine the Great, and Napoleon, as well as for his books on the Renaissance.Cronin was born in Tredegar, Monmouthshire...

 replies that such criticism relies on the flawed premise that Napoleon was responsible for the wars which bear his name, when in fact France was the victim of a series of coalitions which aimed to destroy the ideals of the Revolution.

Propaganda and memory


Napoleon's masterful use of propaganda contributed to his rise to power, legitimated his regime, and established his image for posterity. Strict censorship, controlling every aspect of the press, books, theater, and art, was only part of his propaganda scheme, aimed at portraying him as bringing desperately wanted peace and stability to France. The propagandistic rhetoric changed in relation to events and the atmosphere of Napoleon's reign, focusing first on his role as a general in the army and identification as a soldier, and moving to his role as emperor and a civil leader. Specifically targeting his civilian audience, Napoleon fostered an important, though uneasy, relationship with the contemporary art community, taking an active role in commissioning and controlling all forms of art production to suit his propaganda goals.

The memory of Napoleon in Poland is highly favorable, for his support for independence and opposition to Russia, his legal code, the abolition of serfdom, and the introduction of modern middle class buraucracies.

Hazareesingh (2004) explores how Napoleon's image and memory is best understood when considered within its socio-political context. It played a key role in collective political defiance of the Bourbon restoration monarchy in 1815-30. People from all walks of life and all areas of France, particularly Napoleonic veterans, drew on the Napoleonic legacy and its connections with the ideals of the 1789 revolution. Widespread rumors of Napoleon's return from St. Helena and Napoleon as an inspiration for patriotism, individual and collective liberties, and political mobilization manifested themselves in seditious materials, notably displaying the tricolor and rosettes, and subversive activities celebrating anniversaries of Napoleon's life and reign and disrupting royal celebrations, and demonstrated the prevailing and successful goal of the varied supporters of Napoleon to constantly destabilize the Bourbon regime.

Datta (2005) shows that following the collapse of militaristic Boulangism in the late 1880s, the Napoleonic legend was divorced from party politics and revived in popular culture. Concentrating on two plays and two novels from the period - Victorien Sardou
Victorien Sardou
Victorien Sardou was a French dramatist. He is best remembered today for his development, along with Eugène Scribe, of the well-made play...

's Madame Sans-Gêne (1893), Maurice Barrès
Maurice Barrès
Maurice Barrès was a French novelist, journalist, and socialist politician and agitator known for his nationalist and antisemitic views....

's Les Déracinés (1897), Edmond Rostand
Edmond Rostand
Edmond Eugène Alexis Rostand was a French poet and dramatist. He is associated with neo-romanticism, and is best known for his play Cyrano de Bergerac. Rostand's romantic plays provided an alternative to the naturalistic theatre popular during the late nineteenth century...

's L'Aiglon (1900), and André de Lorde
André de Lorde
André de Latour, comte de Lorde was a French playwright, the main author of the Grand Guignol plays from 1901-1926. His evening career was as a dramatist of terror; during daytimes he worked as a librarian in the Bibliothèque de l'Arsenal. He wrote 150 plays, all of them devoted mainly to the...

 and Gyp
Sibylle Gabrielle Marie Antoinette Riqueti de Mirabeau
Sibylle Aimée Marie-Antoinette Gabrielle de Riquetti de Mirabeau, Comtesse de Martel de Janville was a French writer who wrote under the pseudonym GYP....

's Napoléonette (1913) Datta examines how writers and critics of the Belle Epoque exploited the Napoleonic legend for diverse political and cultural ends. Reduced to a minor character, the new fictional Napoleon was not a world historical figure but an intimate one fashioned by each individual's needs and consumed as popular entertainment. In their attempts to represent the emperor as a figure of national unity, proponents and detractors of the Third Republic used the legend as a vehicle for exploring anxieties about gender and fears about the processes of democratization that accompanied this new era of mass politics and culture.

International Napoleonic Congresses are held regularly and include participation by members of the French and American military, French politicians and scholars from different countries.

Titles and styles

  • 18 May 1804 – 11 April 1814: His Imperial Majesty the Emperor of the French
  • 17 March 1805 – 11 April 1814: His Imperial and Royal Majesty the Emperor of the French, King of Italy
  • 20 March 1815 – 22 June 1815: His Imperial Majesty the Emperor of the French

1804–1805


His Imperial Majesty
Imperial Majesty (style)
Imperial Majesty is a style used by Emperors and Empresses. The style is used to distinguish the status of an emperor/empress from that of a king/queen, who are simply styled Majesty or Royal Majesty...

 Napoleon the First, By the Grace of God
By the Grace of God
By the Grace of God is an introductory part of the full styles of a monarch taken to be ruling by divine right, not a title in its own right....

 and the Constitutions
Constitution of France
The current Constitution of France was adopted on 4 October 1958. It is typically called the Constitution of the Fifth Republic, and replaced that of the Fourth Republic dating from 1946. Charles de Gaulle was the main driving force in introducing the new constitution and inaugurating the Fifth...

 of the Republic
French First Republic
The French First Republic was founded on 22 September 1792, by the newly established National Convention. The First Republic lasted until the declaration of the First French Empire in 1804 under Napoleon I...

, Emperor of the French
Emperor of the French
The Emperor of the French was the title used by the Bonaparte Dynasty starting when Napoleon Bonaparte was given the title Emperor on 18 May 1804 by the French Senate and was crowned emperor of the French on 02 December 1804 at the cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris, in Paris with the Crown of...

.

1805–1806


His Imperial and Royal Majesty
Imperial and Royal Majesty
Imperial and Royal Majesty was the style used by King-Emperors and their consorts as heads of imperial dynasties that were simultaneously royal. The style was used by the Emperor of Austria, who was also the King of Hungary and Bohemia and also by the German Emperor, who was also the King of Prussia...

 Napoleon the First, By the Grace of God and the Constitutions of the Republic, Emperor of the French, King
King of Italy
King of Italy is a title adopted by many rulers of the Italian peninsula after the fall of the Roman Empire...

 of Italy.

1806–1809


His Imperial and Royal Majesty Napoleon the First, By the Grace of God and the Constitutions of the Republic, Emperor of the French, King of Italy, Protector of the Confederation of the Rhine
Confederation of the Rhine
The Confederation of the Rhine was a confederation of client states of the First French Empire. It was formed initially from 16 German states by Napoleon after he defeated Austria's Francis II and Russia's Alexander I in the Battle of Austerlitz. The Treaty of Pressburg, in effect, led to the...

.

1809–1814


His Imperial and Royal Majesty Napoleon the First, By the Grace of God and the Constitutions of the Republic, Emperor of the French, King of Italy, Protector of the Confederation of the Rhine, Mediator of the Helvetic Confederation.

1815


His Imperial Majesty Napoleon the First, By the Grace of God and the Constitutions of the Republic, Emperor of the French.

Ancestry





Titles



Further reading


  • Dwyer, Philip G. and Peter Mcphee, eds. The French Revolution and Napoleon: A Sourcebook. (2002) 213pp online edition
  • Emsley, Clive. Napoleon 2003 142 pp, succinct coverage of his life, France and empire; little on warfare
  • Englund, Steven. Napoleon: A Political Life. (2004). 575 pages; a major political biography excerpt and text search
  • Fisher, Herbert. Napoleon (1913) 256pp old classic online edition
  • Grab, Alexander. Napoleon and the Transformation of Europe (2003) 249pp; covers the 10 states Napoleon controlled excerpt and text search
  • Harold, J. Christopher. The Age of Napoleon (1963) 480pp, popular history stressing empire and diplomacy
  • Paret, Peter. "Napoleon and the Revolution of War," in Paret, ed. Makers of Modern Strategy (1986), Napoleon's ideas on warfare
  • Rose, John Holland. The Life of Napoleon I: Including New Materials from the British Official Records, (2 vol 1903), old but solid scholarship; online editon vol 1 online editon vol 2


External links