Biography of Napoleon Bonaparte | His life and achievements.

Military genius and visionary statesman, his empire spread almost all over Europe before being defeated at Waterloo.

Napoleon was born 15 August 1769 in Ajaccio, capital of Corsica current, into a large family of eight siblings, the Bonaparte family, or with his Italianized name, Buonaparte. Five of them were males: Joseph, Napoleon, Lucien, Luis and Jerome. The girls were Paulina, Elisa and Carolina. Under cover of the greatness of Napolione - so called it in their vernacular language-, everyone would earn honors, wealth, fame and also afford thousand Follies. The mother, María Leticia Ramolino, was a woman of remarkable personality, whom Stendhal chose for its firm and ardent.
Carlos María Bonaparte, the father, always with economic burdens by their uncertain gropes in the legal profession, fulfilled thanks to the possession of certain lands, shown to have few practical life skills. Their difficulties are aggravated to the siding for the nationalist cause of Corsica to his new metropolis, France; gathered around a national hero, Paoli, the Islanders defended it with weapons. According to Paoli defeats and the persecution of their side, the mother of Napoleon had to face during their first births the painful impact of the flight by the abrupt island; of their thirteen children, only survived those eight. Subjugated the revolt, the French Governor, Comte de Marbeuf, played the letter appeal to the patrician families of the island. Carlos Bonaparte, which religaba its pretensions of belonging to the minor nobility with some ancestors in Tuscany, took the opportunity, traveled with a recommendation of Marbeuf to metropolis to accredit them and achieved his two eldest sons entered as Fellows in the College of Autun.
Napoleon's merits schoolchildren in mathematics, which was very fond of and who came to constitute a sort of second nature for him - very useful for their future specialty military, artillery-, facilitated their entry into the military school of Brienne. From there he left at age seventeen with the appointment of sergeant major and a destination of garrison in the city of Valence.

Revolutionary Youth

Soon came the death of the father and, for this reason, the transfer to Corsica and the temporary decline in active service. Its troubled juvenile stage took place between comings and goings to France, new cantonment sites with the troops, this time in Auxonne, the maelstrom of revolution, whose violent explosions met during a stay in Paris, and independence conflicts of Corsica. In the hectic clash of the insular erroneus, Napoleon created enemies, among them the same Paoli, to break this with the Republican Convention and decant the young officer by the sibarytic factions. Distrust of the paolistas in the Bonaparte family was bartering in furious animosity. Napoleon won by intrigues with the militia headquarters and wanted to strafe his opponents in the streets of Ajaccio. But he failed and had to flee with his family, to escape a fire in his house and almost certain death at the hands of enraged countrymen.

A young Napoleón Bonaparte
Installed with his family in Marseille, he malvivió between great economic hardship which sometimes placed them on the edge of misery; Horizon family availability used to end up in the houses of pawns, but the Bonapartes not lacked courage or resources. Maria Leticia, mother, became the lover of an accommodated merchant Clary, brother Joseph was married to a daughter of this, Marie Julie, while Napoleon dating with another daughter, Desiree, unsuccessful. However, the narrowness of only began to send when a brother of Robespierre, Agustin, won him protectively. Got returning is to rows with the grade of Captain and acquired a broad popularity with occasion of the siege of Toulon, in 1793, to the quell a revolt counter-revolutionary supported by them English; proposed to a few untrained General assault plan was theirs, running also and infallible success.
In recognition of his merits he was promoted to Brigadier general, was assigned to the general headquarters of artillery in the army of Italy and traveled on special mission to Genoa. Those contacts with the Robespierre were about to be fatal to the fall of the Jacobin Terror, Thermidor 9, and be imprisoned for a time in the fortress of Antibes, as you are dilucidaba their suspected affiliation. Released through the mediation of another corso, Convention Salicetti, the young Napoleon, Commissioner with twenty-four years and without a job or benefit, returned to start in Paris, as if split of zero.
He found a hole in the topographical section of the Department of operations. In addition to strictly technical tasks, maps, reports and military secrets, this office made possible access to high civilian authorities who oversaw it. And through these, to the halls where political machinations and financial speculation, in the murky glory that had happened to the unforgiving moralism of Robespierre, mixed with the amorous conflicts and nostalgia for the uses of the old regime.
There he found the refined Josèphe Rose Tascher de la Pagerie, of reputation as bright as misleading, who also filled their empty sentimental. He was a native Creole Lady of Martinique, who had two children, Hortensia and Eugenio, and whose first husband, Viscount and general Beauharnais, had been guillotined by the Jacobins. Napoleon, who declared not having felt a deep affection for anything or anyone, much later confessed to have passionately loved in his youth to Josefina, which took him about five years. Among her lovers was bars, the strong man of the Board emerged with the new Republican Constitution of 1795, who by then was in search of a sword, according to its literal expression, which conveniently handle to the conservative Republic fold and steal the continuous attempts of coup d ' état of realistic, Jacobin and radical egalitarian. The choice of Napoleon was precipitated by one of the formidable insurrection of the people of Paris, at the end of 1795, which the royalists joined with its own destabilizing purposes. Responsible for repressing it, Napoleon made a fence and operation annihilation to Cannon shots that left the capital flooded in blood. The Convention had saved.
Secured interior quiet for the moment, bars entrusted in 1796 direct the war in one of the most uncontrolled Republican fronts of Italy against the Austrians and Piedmontese. A few days before his departure he married Josefina in civil ceremonies, but in his absence, he could not help that she would surrender to bars and other members of the Government. Jealous and tormented, ended by claim it desperately at his side, at the same stage of battle.

Successful military

That general of twenty-seven years transformed a few bodies of ragged men, hungry and demoralized in a formidable war machine that ground the Piedmont in less than two weeks and repulsed the Austrians beyond the Alps, of victoria in victoria. Their campaigns of Italy would then be required subject of study in military academies during countless promotions. Much or more significant than their sweeping victories in Lodi, 1796 in Arcole and Rivoli, in 1797, was the political reorganization of the Italian peninsula, which carried out merging secular divisions and old republics States back style dependent on France. The ray of the war was simultaneously revealed as the genius of the peace. More troubling was the autonomous character of its management: it was and undid according to their own criteria and not according to the guidelines of Paris. The directory began to get irritated. When Austria was forced to ask for peace in 1797, was no longer possible to a strict control over a leader raised to the category of legendary hero.

Napoleon in Egypt (Antoine Jean Gros) campaign
Napoleon showed a menacing proneness to be the sword that runs, the Government which administers and head that plans and directs, three people in a same kind of unequalled efficiency. Therefore, the directory columbró the possibility to remove that threat by accepting its plan to cut vital routes of British power - those of the Mediterranean and the India - with an expedition to Egypt. Thus, on 19 may 1798 he embarked bound for Alexandria, and two months later, at the battle of the pyramids, dispersed to the caste of warrior mercenaries who exploited the country on behalf of Turkey, the Mamluks, for then plunging into the Syrian desert. But all their chances of success were collapsed by the destruction of the French fleet in Abukir by Nelson, Napoleon uneducated English naval scenarios.
The setback left him isolated and consuming of impatience to the fragmentary news received from Europe. There the second coalition of the royalist powers had recovered the conquests of Italy and French domestic politics boiled conspiracies and candidates to a State in which the only stabilizing force that remained was the army assault. Finally he decided to return to France on the first boat that could evade the blockade by Nelson, ended up passing on his native island and nobody dared to judge him for desertion and abandonment of his troops, while climbing again from Corsica to Paris, now as undisputed hero.

First Consul

In few weeks organized the coup d ' état of 18 Brumaire (according to the new Republican nomenclature of the calendar: November 9th) with the collaboration of his brother Luciano, which helped him to dissolve the Assembly Legislative of the Council of five hundred which contained as President. It was the year of 1799. The coup swept to the directory, its old guard bars, cameras last revolutionary clubs, all the existing powers and established the Consulate: a provisional Government shared in theory by three headlines, but in fact coverage of its absolute dictatorship, sanctioned by the new Napoleonic Constitution of the year 1800.

Napoleon first Consul (oil of Antoine Jean Gros)
Approved under the slogan 'The revolution is over', the new Constitution restored the universal suffrage that had cut the thermidorian oligarchy, successor of Robespierre. In practice, calculated institutional mechanisms blinded the effective channels of actual participation to voters, in Exchange for giving them freedom that ratified him in enthusiastic plebiscites. That validated his ascension to first consul to cease the provisionality, threw less than two thousand votes between several million ballots. But Napoleon was not satisfied with lengthening then this dignity to a duration of ten years, but in 1802 became lifetime. It was still for the great newcomer who intoxicated to France's wins after having destroyed militarily the second coalition in Marengo, and undertook a dazzling internal reconstruction.

Napoleon, Emperor

The heterogeneous opposition to his Government was dismantled by drastic repressions to right and left, as a result of failed attacks against their person; the most chilling example was the kidnapping and execution of a Prince related to the deposed Bourbon, the Duke of Enghien, on March 20, 1804. The corollary of this process was the provision that the Senate made him the next day of the imperial crown. The coronation ceremony was held December 2 at Notre Dame, with the assistance of Pope Pius VII, although Napoleon bound the Crown himself and then beat Josefina; the pontiff was limited to asking that they held a religious marriage, in a single act that is concealed jealously to the public. A new Constitution the same year further said its comprehensive authority.

Napoleon crowned Emperor (picture of J. A. D. Ingres)
The history of the Empire is a recapitulation of his victories on the European monarchies, allied in repeated coalition against France and ultimately driven English diplomacy and gold. In the battle of Austerlitz in 1805, he hit the third Coalition; in Jena, in 1806, he emptied the powerful Prussian Kingdom and it could reorganize all the map of Germany in the Confederation of the Rhine, while the Russians were contained in Friendland, in 1807. The repeating Austria the Fifth Coalition, he returned to destroy it at Wagram in 1809.
Nothing could resist its instrument of shock, la Grande Armée (the ' Grand Army'), and its operational command, which, in his own words, amounted to another invincible army. Hundreds of thousands of corpses from all sides paved these warlike glory. Hundreds of thousands of surviving soldiers and their well-trained officers, spread throughout Europe the principles of the French Revolution. Everywhere the feudal rights were abolished along with the thousand particularities economic, customs and corporate; creating a single internal market, legal and political equality are implanted according to the model of the French Civil Code, which gave name - the Code Napoleon, matrix of Western rights, with the exception of the Anglo-Saxons; Church property; secularizaban establishing a centralized administration and uniform and the freedom of cults and religion, or the freedom of not having any. Feudal inequalities - based privilege and birth - bourgeois inequalities - based on money and the situation in the productive order - are replaced with these and other measures.
The Napoleonic work, which primarily released the labor force, is the hallmark of the victory of the bourgeoisie and can be summed up in one of his phrases: "if I had had time, had soon formed a single town, and each, to travel everywhere, always it would have found in their common homeland". This early unitarist vision of Europe, perhaps the key of the fascination exerted by his figure on diverse historical and cultural currents, was unaware of the national peculiarities in uniformity subject otherwise to the imperialist aegis of France. Thus, a number of principalities and kingdoms rigidly subjects, mere defensive glacis at the borders, were awarded to his brothers and generals. The excluded was Luciano Bonaparte, as a result of a prolonged break fraternal.
To the many marital infidelities of Josefina during their campaigns, at least until the day of the ascension to the throne, had just fallen Napoleon with some fleeting adventures. These are exchanged in a relationship of very different court found in 1806 to the Polish Countess María Walewska, in a war against the Russians; intermittent, but largely maintained the love with the Countess, he met one of the ambitions of Napoleonic, have a son, Leon. This eagerness of paternity and to finish his work with a dynastic legitimacy associated with their political calculations to push him to divorce Josefina and ask an Austrian Archduchess, Luisa María, related to one of the most ancient lineages of the continent.

Napoleon with his children
Without another special highlight his lineage, this Princess fulfilled what was expected of bond, to giving birth in 1811 to Napoleón II - short and savour existence, since he died in 1832, proclaimed by his father in his two successive abdications, but that never came to reign. Eventually, María Luisa provided the Emperor a secret bitterness not to share his downfall, since he returned next to their parents, the Habsburgs, with his son, and at the Viennese Court became mistress of an Austrian general, Neipperg, who contracted marriage remarried to the death of Napoleon.


The year of his marriage to Louise María, 1810, seemed to point out the Napoleonic zenith. The only States that still remained to guard were Russia and Britain, whose maritime hegemony had sat once for all Nelson at Trafalgar, ruining the Emperor better designed projects. Against this last had tested the continental blockade, closing ports and routes European British manufactures. It was a trade war lost in advance, where all the trenches useless were to activisimo smuggling and the fact that European industry was still in mantillas with respect to the British and was unable to supply the demand. Collapsed the commercial circulation, Napoleon emerged in Europe as the great economic hindrance, especially when mutual reprisals spread to neutral countries.
The continental blockade also led in 1808 to invade Portugal, British satellite, and its tap, Spain. The Spanish Bourbons were evicted from the throne in favour of his brother Joseph, and Portuguese dynasty fled to Brazil. Both villages took up arms and began a double war of independence that would leave them devastated for many decades, but set and decimated part of la Grande Armée in a grueling fight guerrillas that lasted until 1814, bent in the battles to field opened by a modern army sent by Great Britain.
The other part of the army, which had enrolled to contingents of the expired nationalities, was swallowed by the Russian expanses. In the campaign of 1812 against zar Alejandro I, Napoleon arrived to Moscow, but in the forced withdrawal perished almost half a million men between the cold and ice of the Russian winter, hunger and the continued harassment of the enemy. Across Europe then rose against the Napoleonic Dominion, and national sentiment of the people rebelled to giving support to the revenge of the monarchies; even in France, tired of endless war tension and increasing oppression, the bourgeoisie decided to rid themselves of his master.
The decisive battle of this new coalition, the sixth, was fought at Leipzig in 1813, the "battle of Nations", a large and rare defeats of Napoleon. It was the prologue to the invasion of France, the entrance of the allies into Paris and the abdication of the Emperor in Fontainebleau, in April 1814, forced by his same generals. The victorious powers granted him full sovereignty over the tiny Italian island of Elba and instead restored to the Bourbons, thrown by the revolution, in the figure of Luis XVIII.
Your stay on Elba, smoothed manicured relatives of his mother and the visit of María Walewska, was comparable to a caged lion. He was forty-five years old and still felt able to face Europe. Errors of the Bourbons, that despite the long exile is not resigned to the bourgeoisie, and the discontent of the people's advocate was given time to act. It landed in France with only 1,000 men and, without firing a shot, in a new bath triumphant crowds, returned to power in Paris.
But it was completely defeated in June 1815 by vigilant European States – which had not deposed weapons, mindful of a possible to reinvigorate a French--in Waterloo and put back in the dilemma of abdicate. Thus ended his second imperial period, which has been called the hundred days (from March to June 1815) by its short duration. Surrendered to the English, who deported him to a lost African islet, Santa Elena, where slowly succumbed to the iniquities of a gloomy jailor, Hudson Lowe. Before he died, on May 5, 1821, he wrote a memoir, the Memorial of Santa Elena, in which described himself as he wished because he saw the posterity. This still not been agreement about his personality singular mixture of bronco cuartelero swordfish, statesman, the visionary, adventurer and hero of antiquity haunted by glory.

Chronology of Napoleon Bonaparte

1769Born in Ajaccio (Corsica).
1784Cadet in the military school of Brienne.
1785Finish his studies at the military school in Paris.
1789He participated in the insurrection of Corsica.
1793Gets the promotion to general of Brigade, on their merits of war.
1795Save the National Convention (the French Republican revolutionary Government) of a Parisian insurrection.
1796Named general in Chief of the army of Italy, obtained numerous victories. He married Josefina de Beauharnais.
1798-99Campaigns of Italy and Egypt.
1799It fails in the conquest of Syria and returns to France. Take power in France by means of a coup d'etat. He was appointed first Consul, which happened to be the main ruler of France, with dictatorial powers.
1800Beat Austria in the battle of Marengo and consolidated his conquests in the North of Italy. New Constitution.
1802It is named Consul for life.
1804Crowned Emperor of the French in Notre Dame.
1805Defeat to Austria and Russia in the battle of Austerlitz.
1806Establish the Confederation of the Rhine and passes to control Poland. Create the Continental system, intended to block and ruining English Commerce.
1807Invades Portugal.
1808King of Spain appoints his brother, José I. Guerra de Independencia of Spain and Portugal, which runs six years.
1809Rome and the Papal States were annexed. Annulment of his marriage with Josefina.
1810Marriage with Archduchess Luisa María de Austria, daughter of Emperor Francisco I.
1812Disastrous campaign in Russia.
1814It abdicates as Emperor and exile on the island of Elba.
1815Escape from Elba, returns to France and takes power. European coalitions get beat him at Waterloo. He is deported to the African island of St. Helena.
1821He died on the island of Santa Elena.

Battles of Napoleon Bonaparte  

The battles from 1799 until 1815 between France and several European Nations are already historically known as the Napoleonic wars. These military clashes were a continuation of the wars maintained by France in Europe during the French Revolution (1789-1799). They shone Napoleón Bonaparte quarterback talent. During the years he had spent in provinces (Valence and Auxonne) fittings, had taken advantage of its time to expand its military readiness (he delved into his studies of mathematics, artillery and tactical military); He entered then, in addition, knowledge of the classical political thinkers (especially Machiavelli and Montesquieu) and discovered his passion for history (dazzled le biographies them of Alexander, Julio Cesar and especially that of Federico II).

The first coalition

During the war of the first coalition (1793-1797), France fought against the Alliance formed by Prussia, Austria, Spain, Britain, the United provinces (current Netherlands) and the Kingdom of Sardinia. The French Government - Directory - entrusted to Napoleon the direction of military operations against the Austrian troops in the North of Italy in 1796. In less than a year, Napoleon had defeated the forces of Austria, superior in number. In 1798, he was assigned command of an expedition that aimed to conquer Egypt to cut the British route to the India. The invasion failed after the battle of the Nile and Napoleon returned to France. While both campaigns took place during the regime of the Consulate, prior to the assumption of power by Bonaparte, they usually be considered as the first phase of the Napoleonic wars. It was there where the French leader first deployed on a large scale their talent as military Chief.

The second Coalition

The victory of Napoleon in the campaign against the Austrians in the North of Italy ended the first coalition. However, during his stay in Egypt, the second (December 24, 1798) coalition of Russia, Great Britain, Austria, the Kingdom of Naples, Portugal and the Ottoman Empire was formed. The main battles of the war of the second Coalition, which began at the end of 1798, took place in the North of Italy and in Switzerland the following year. The Austrians and Russians, led by general Alexandr Suvórov, beat the French in the North of Italy in the battle of Magnano (April 5, 1799), Cassano (27 April), the Trebbia (17-19 June) and Novi (15 August). The Coalition also took Milan; it abolished the Cisalpine Republic, which had been constituted under the auspices of the French Government in 1797; occupied Turin and deprived France of its former conquests in Italy.

Napoleon at the battle of Eylau (A. J. Gros box)
The outcome of the struggle in Switzerland was more favorable to the French. After being defeated in Zurich (June 7) by Carlos de Habsburgo, Archduke of Austria, French forces led by general André Masséna defeated the Russian troops of general Alexander Korsakov on September 26. Suvorov and his forces left the North of Italy, crossing the Alps to join Korsakov in Switzerland, where his troops had scattered after being defeated. The army of Suvorov had to take refuge in the mountains of the canton of Grisons, where was decimated because of cold and hunger. The Russians withdrew from the second Coalition on 22 October alleging as reason for the lack of cooperation by the Austrians.
When Napoleon returned to France from Egypt in October 1799, he became the leader of the Consulate and offered peace to the allies. The Coalition rejected this proposal and Napoleon planned a series of attacks against Austria in the spring of 1800. Bonaparte entered Italy crossing the Alps with a new army made up of 40,000 men, and defeated the Austrians at the battle of Marengo on 14 June. Meanwhile, the French troops of general Jean Victor Moreau had penetrated in the South of Germany across the Rhine and taking Munich. Moreau had also defeated the Austrian forces of the Archduke of Austria Juan de Habsburgo in the battle of Hohenlinden, which took place in Bavaria on 3 December, and had approached the city of Linz (Austria).
The French victories was forced to sign the Treaty of Lunéville on February 9, 1801, by which Austria and its German allies yielded the left bank of the Rhine River to France and recognizing the republics Batavian, Helvetica, Cisalpina and Ligurian, in addition to other concessions to Austria. Also, this Treaty marked the dissolution of the second coalition. The only ally that continued the struggle against France was Britain. The British troops had faced unsuccessfully against the French into Dutch territory in 1799, but had conquered some French possessions in Asia and elsewhere. Great Britain signed on 27 March 1802 the peace of Amiens with France.
This peace, however, proved to be a mere suspension of hostilities. In 1803, there was a dispute between the two countries with regard to the clause of the agreement which provided for the return of the island of Malta, the order of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem. Britain refused to hand over the island, so it broke out a new war against the French. An important consequence of this conflict was that Napoleon abandoned his project of establishing a great colonial empire French in North America, to be forced to concentrate his resources in Europe. Thus, he sold Louisiana to the United States. In 1805, Austria, Russia and Sweden joined the conflict in support of the British side, and Spain allied with France; This was the beginning of the war of the third coalition.

The third Coalition

Napoleon hastened to take measures against the new partnership. It had exerted great pressure on Britain from 1798 to maintain an army concentrated in Boulogne - on the banks of the canal of the stain-making Britons think that was preparing an invasion of England. Bonaparte considerably increased the number of forces featured in Boulogne when it began the dissensions which detonated the war in 1803. After the formation of the third coalition against France, his troops left Boulogne to face the Austrians, who had invaded Bavaria with an army led by Fernando III, the Grand Duke of Tuscany, and general Karl Mack von Leiberich. Several German States, among which were Bavaria, Württemberg and Baden, allied with France. Napoleon defeated Austria at Ulm forces, captured 23,000 prisoners, and then marched with his troops along the Danube and conquered Vienna.
The Russian armies, led by general Mijaíl Kutúzov and Alejandro I, Emperor of Russia, supported the Austrians, but Bonaparte defeated austro-rusas forces in the battle of Austerlitz, also known as the three emperors. Austria again surrendered and signed the Treaty of Pressburg on 26 December 1805. One of the clauses of the agreement stipulated that Austria should give France the area from the North of Italy and Bavaria part of the Austrian territory; In addition, Austria recognized the duchies of Württemberg and Baden as kingdoms.

The Confederation of the Rhine

Given that the general Masséna troops had defeated the Austrian army commanded by Carlos de Habsburgo in Italy, Napoleon took advantage of this situation to name his brother, José I, King of Naples in 1806; also, appointed to another of his brothers, Luis I Bonaparte, King of Holland (the old Republic Batavian); on 12 July he established the Confederation of the Rhine, finally constituted by all German States with the exception of Austria, Prussia, Brunswick and Hesse.
The formation of this political entity put an end to the Holy Roman Empire and almost all Germany was under the control of Bonaparte. However, the successes on the continent were largely offset by defeat British Admiral Horatio Nelson inflicted to the joint of the French fleet and Spanish force off the coast of Cape Trafalgar on 21 October 1805. In 1806, Napoleon implanted the so-called Continental system whereby ports across Europe remained closed to British trade. The naval superiority of the British hindered the implementation of the Continental system and did fail the European economic policy of Bonaparte.

The Fourth Coalition

Prussia, before the increase in power of France in Germany, joined the fourth coalition composed of Great Britain, Russia and Sweden in 1806. Bonaparte crushed the Prussian troops at the battle of Jena on 14 October of that same year and took Berlin. Then, he defeated the Russians at the battle of Friedland and forced to sign peace to Alejandro I.

The battle of Friedland (picture of Carle Vernet)
The main conditions of the Treaty of Tilsit, Russia had to deliver its Polish possessions and allying with France, while Prussia lost half of its territory, had to face considerable compensation and severe restrictions on the size of its standing army has imposed. Russia and Denmark undertook military action against Sweden which forced its monarch, Gustavo IV Adolfo, to abdicate in favor of his uncle, Carlos XIII, provided that it appoint as his heir to the general Jean Baptiste Jules Bernadotte, one of Napoleon's marshals. Bernadotte was crowned in 1818 with the name of Charles XIV Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte and was the founder of the current Swedish dynasty.

Antinapoleonico nationalism

In 1808, Napoleon dominated throughout Europe, except for Russia and Great Britain. The main reasons for the subsequent decline were the emergence of the nationalist spirit in several of the defeated Nations of Europe and the persistent opposition of Britain, which, already safe from invasion thanks to the superiority of its Navy, do not cease to organize and finance new coalitions against Napoleon.
Spain was the first nation in which Bonaparte had to face nationalist uprisings that led to his downfall. The French Emperor, after having dethroned the King Carlos IV of Spain, appointed his brother José Bonaparte King of this country in 1808. The Spaniards revolted and drove out to the new ruler of Madrid. The war of Spanish independence (1808-1814) broke out between the French, who were trying to restore José I Bonaparte on the throne, and the Spaniards, supported by British forces commanded by Arthur Colley Wellesley, Duke of Wellington.

Battle of Wagram (picture of Carle Vernet)
The French were defeated, and casualties suffered by severely harmed Napoleon when he was forced to deal with their new enemies from Eastern and Northern Europe. His first opponent was Austria, which joined with Great Britain to form the Fifth Coalition in 1809. The French Emperor defeated the Austrians at Wagram (July 1809) and forced to sign the Treaty of Vienna, which Austria lost Salzburg, part of Galicia and large areas of its territories in the South of Europe. In addition, he divorced his first wife and married the daughter of Francisco II of Austria, in the vain hope of this country will not participate in new coalitions against it.
The defeat of Napoleon
In 1812, France and Russia were at war because Alejandro I refused to apply the Continental System. Since much of his men were in Spain, Napoleon invaded Russia only with 500,000 men. He defeated the Russians at Borodino and conquered Moscow on September 14, 1812. The Russians invaded the city, preventing the French troops established winter quarters there. They left Russia and they went into Germany, but most of the men died along the way because of the cold, hunger, and the Russian guerrilla attacks.
The Russian Empire then joined the Fifth Coalition, which also were part of Prussia, Great Britain and Sweden. Prussia, in a burst of nationalistic fervor caused by political and economic reforms that had been implemented since the defeat of Jena, began the war of liberation against Napoleon in 1813. This got his last major victory at the battle of Dresden, where the French army defeated the joint forces of Austria, Prussia and Russia of August 27, 1813. However, during the month of October, Napoleon was forced to retreat over the Rhine after the battle of Leipzig, the German States being released. The Russian, Prussian and Austrian armies invaded France from the North the following year and took Paris in March 1814; Napoleon abdicated and had to go into exile on Elba Island, located in the Mediterranean Sea.
The members of the Fifth Coalition gathered at the Congress of Vienna to restore the monarchies that Napoleon had overthrown in Europe. However, while plotting the new map of Europe, Bonaparte escaped from Elba, headed to France, where hurried to form an army; after defeat at Ligny and Quatre-Bras failing, on 18 June 1815 he was definitively defeated at the battle of Waterloo, which ended the Napoleonic war
Extracted from the website: Biografías y Vidas
Biographies of historical figures and personalities

Recommended Contents