Napoleonic Wars

The Napoleonic Wars were a series of wars fought between the French Empire and its allies, under Emperor Napoleon I, and a series of alliances, or coalitions, among other nations of Europe, primarily Great Britain and Prussia. The Napoleonic Wars were spawned by continuing issues in the aftermath of the French Revolution and Napoleon’s desire to dominate continental Europe. The Napoleonic Wars ended with the French defeat at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. Napoleon was exiled to the island of St. Helena, where he died in 1821.

Their backs to Moscow, the Russians fought Napoleon Bonaparte with exceptional tenacity at the Battle of Borodino.

Napoleonic Wars

Napoleon Bonaparte & The 1812 Battle of Borodino

by Jonathan North

At 11 o’clock on the evening of June 23, 1812, the first elements of Napoleon’s mighty army marched on three pontoon bridges over the river Niemen and set foot on Russian soil; the epic invasion of Russia had begun. Read more

An eyewitness account of the Battle of Leipzig by Colonel Saint-Chamans and others.

Napoleonic Wars

Colonel Saint-Chamans & The Battle of Leipzig

by Jonathan North

[Editor’s note: The following are participant accounts—mainly those of Alfred Armand Robert Saint-Chamans—of Napoleon’s 1813 campaign in Germany ending in the decisive battle of Leipzig. Read more

The long retreat during the Russian winter of 1812 doomed Napoleon Bonaparte’s Grand Armee, and brought defeat at the hands of the Sixth Coalition.

Napoleonic Wars

Napoleon Bonaparte & The Russian Winter of 1812

by Michael Haskew

Although the French Empire and Imperial Russia were nominal allies following their agreement of mutual support concluded at Tilsit in 1807, divergent interests drove a wedge between them in subsequent years. Read more

With the stunning victory at the 1805 Battle of Austerlitz, Napoleon Bonaparte executed a tactical masterpiece that some believe was his highest achievement during the Napoleonic Wars.

Napoleonic Wars

The Napoleonic Wars: The 1805 Battle of Austerlitz

by Michael Haskew

During the War of the Third Coalition, Napoleon Bonaparte, a year after proclaiming himself Emperor Napoleon I of France, won perhaps the greatest victory of his military career near the Bohemian village of Austerlitz, also known as the Battle of the Three Emperors because Napoleon confronted Austrian and Russian armies led by Francis II and Alexander I respectively. Read more

Napoleonic Wars

The Rise of Napoleon Bonaparte

By Michael Haskew

Born on the island of Corsica to parents of minor nobility on August 15, 1769, Napoleon Bonaparte, the future Emperor of France and one of the leading military strategists and tacticians in history, graduated from the French military academy, the prestigious École Militaire, in September 1785, ranking 42nd in a class of 58. Read more