Napoleon’s Early Days Napoleon was born in Corsica (a Frenchterritory) in August 1769. His family belonged to the high social class He was sent to military academy in France Napoleon graduated in 1785, at the age of 16,and joined the artillery as a second lieutenant. During the French Revolution he served theRevolutionary Army.
“I am no ordinary man.” Napoleon rose quickly in the army duringthe revolution because so many officersfled France. In 1793, Napoleon commanded the Frenchtroops that ousted the British from Toulon.By age 27, Napoleon was a general.
The Directory It can be argued that the FrenchRevolution ended in 1795. A new constitution established a newgovernment known as the Directory. TheDirectory included an elected legislatureand an executive branch with fivedirectors.
The younggeneral soonreceived commandof a French armyfor an invasion ofItaly. He won severalbrilliant victoriesover the Austrianswho ruled there. Napoleon’ssuccesses forcedAustria to withdrawfrom the war in1797.
In 1798, Napoleon invadedEgypt because it was avital lifeline to Britishoutposts in India.Napoleon quickly defeatedthe Egyptian army.However, the British fleet,under Admiral HoratioNelson, destroyed theFrench fleet in the battle ofthe Nile. Horatio Nelson (1758-1805)
Leaving the army in Egypt, Napoleonreturned to Paris. The French peoplewere not fully aware of the losses inEgypt, and they welcomed him as a hero. In Paris, Napoleon found that manypeople were dissatisfied with theDirectory. With the help of troops loyal tohim, he and two directors overthrew thegovernment in November, 1799.
Napoleon as “First Consul” After returning from Egypt,Napoleon launched asuccessful coup d’ etat onNovember 9, 1799. He proclaimed himself “FirstConsul” [Julius Caesar’s title]and did away with the electedAssembly. In 1802, he made himself sole“Consul for Life.” Two years later he proclaimedhimself “Emperor.”
Napoleon’s Domestic Policy By 1804, Napoleon had gained almostabsolute power. He knew the Frenchwould never stand for a return to the OldRegime. Therefore, he continued manyreforms of the revolution. But at the same time, he kept firmpersonal control of the government.
Napoleon Established theBanque de France, 1800Napoleon enforced a law requiring all citizens to paytaxes. He also created the national Bank of France,in which the tax money was deposited. The Bank, inturn, issued money and made loans to businesses.
Lycée System of Education Established by Napoleon in 1801 as an educational reform. Lycées initially enrolled the nation’s most talented students [theyhad to pay tuition, although there was some financial help availablefor poorer student]. Lycées trained the nation’s future bureaucrats.
Code Napoleon, 1804 It divides civil law into: Personal status. Property. The acquisition ofproperty. Its purpose was to reform theFrench legal code to reflect theprinciples of the Fr. Revolution. Create one law code for France.
The Napoleonic Code Napoleon’s greatest achievement in governmentwas the Napoleonic Code, which influencedFrench law to the present. It recognized that all men were equal before thelaw and guaranteed freedom of religion as wellas a person’s right to work in any occupation. However, it put the interests of the state abovethose of individual citizens and it dropped lawspassed during the revolution that had protectedthe rights of women and children.
TheInfluenceof theNapoleonicCodeWherever it was implemented [in the conquered territories], theCode Napoleon swept away feudal property relations.
In 1804, Napoleon became“Emperor of the French.” As Pope Pius VIII preparedto crown the emperor,Napoleon took the crownand placed it on his headhimself. By this gesture,Napoleon showed that hedid not bow to anyauthority. He then proceeded tocrown his wife, theEmpress Josephine.Emperor Napoleon
Napoleon’s Family Rules! Jerome Bonaparte King of Westphalia. Joseph Bonaparte King of Spain Louise Bonaparte King of Holland Pauline Bonaparte Princess of Italy Napoléon Francis Joseph Charles (son) King ofRome Elisa Bonaparte GrandDuchess of Tuscany Caroline Bonaparte Queenof Naples
The Empire of Napoleon In the early 1800s, France fought all themajor European powers. Through shrewd diplomacy, Napoleonusually kept the European powers dividedso they could not unite against him.
Europe under French rule From 1807 to 1812, Napoleon was at the heightof his power. He controlled an empire thatstretched from France to the borders of Russia
While ruling this vast empire, Napoleonhelped spread the ideas of the FrenchRevolution across Europe. He introduced religious toleration,abolished serfdom, made the NapoleonicCode into law and reduced the power ofthe Catholic Church. However, Napoleon lost much supportwhen he imposed high taxes to finance hiscontinuing conflict with Britain.Europe under French rule
The Continental System Although Napoleon defeated the major powers on thecontinent, he was unable to bring Britain to its knees. Admiral Nelson dashed Napoleon’s plans by sinking mostof the French fleet at Cape Trafalgar, near Spain. Napoleon then decided to blockade British ports andordered all European nations to stop trade with Britain. This was called the Continental System.
The Continental System Unfortunately for France, the ContinentalSystem backfired. Britain did lose trade,but France suffered more. The powerful British navy was able to cutoff overseas imports to France and therest of the continent. This weakened theFrench economy.
Stirrings of Nationalism During the reign of Napoleon, the conceptof Nationalism began to become popular.Nationalism is the belief that a peoplegroup can make one great nationtogether. Napoleon used the desire of people tohave their own nation to help him defeatthe Austrian Empire.
Haitian Independence,1792-1804 Haitian slaves revolted againstBritain because of the ideas offreedom and nationalism. Napoleon helped them at first, butthen turned against the revolution.Toussaint L’Ouverture
Nationalism turns against Napoleon Opposition to Napoleon also grew among theconquered and allied peoples of Europe, whowere developing a sense of nationalism, or prideand devotion to one’s own country. They resented paying taxes to France andsending soldiers to serve in Napoleon’s armies.They wanted to restore their own governments,customs, and traditions. As nationalists feelings grew, revolts broke outall over Europe.
The Emperor’s Downfall In 1812, Napoleon decided to invade Russia.Napoleon assembled an army of over 500,000soldiers, and in May 1812, he led this GrandArmy into Russia. Napoleon planned to defeat the Russians in aquick, decisive battle. To his surprise, theRussians refused to stand and fight. Instead,they retreated, burning their crops and homesas they went. They forced Napoleon to lead hisarmy deeper into Russia.
The Russians finally engaged the French near Moscow,500 miles inside Russia. The French won, but whenNapoleon entered Moscow, he found the Russian capitalin flames. Napoleon soon realized he could not feed andhouse his army in Moscow. Thus, in October 1812, heordered a retreat.
During the retreat, the bitterly cold Russian winterturned the French victory into a disastrous defeat.Thousands of Napoleon’s soldiers starved or froze todeath. The Russian army attacked the stragglers.Fewer than 100,000 escaped from Russia.
A powerful alliancemade up of Britain,Austria, Russia, andPrussia pounced on theweakened French armyas it limped out ofRussia. Napoleon rushed hometo raise a new army,but his efforts failed.In March 1814, theallies captured Paris. Napoleon abdicatedand went into exile onthe island of Elba, offthe coast of Italy.
After Napoleon was exiled, themonarchy was restored, butthe king was quite differentthan his ancestors. In 1814, Louis XVIII issued aconstitution that provided forequality under the law for allcitizens, an elected legislature,and religious freedom. Healso kept the NapoleonicCode. When Louis XVIII becameking, many émigrés returnedto France and demandedrevenge on supporters of theFrench Revolution. Napoleon took advantage ofthe resulting disturbances toreturn to Paris. Louis XVIII (1755-1824)
In March 1815, he againproclaimed himselfemperor. Discontentedsoldiers rallied to his side.For 100 days, he workedto rebuild the Frencharmy. But the Europeanallies acted swiftly. In June 1815, a jointBritish and Prussian armyled by the Duke ofWellington defeated theFrench at Waterloo.Duke of Wellington(1769-1852)
Napoleon’sFinal ExileNapoleon was exiled to theisland of St. Helena in theAtlantic, where he died in1821.
After-Effects: 1815 After Napoleon lost power in 1815, the mostpowerful leaders in Europe met to try to restoreorder. In other words, to make things the waythey were before the French Revolution. This was called the Congress of Vienna Russia, Austria,Prussia (now part ofGermany) created theHoly Alliance tomaintain power forkings and preventdemocracy andnationalism.
After-Effects: 1815 Britain was a much more democratic country thanthose of the Holy Alliance. But it preferredstability in Europe over more revolutions. It focused on trying to establish a Balance ofPower between the countries in order to preventwar
After-Effects: 1820s-1830s Revolutions broke outin Latin Americabecause Spain was nolonger strong enoughto control its territory. The most famousrevolutionary wasSimón Bolivar
In 1830, revolutionsbroke out in severalcountries includingFrance (where anew king wasappointed) and theNetherlands, whichsplit into twocountries – Belgiumand Holland.After-Effects: 1830
Once again, revolutions sprang up inseveral places. In France, the King lost power and wasreplaced by a president – Louis Napoleon. Italians, Czechs and Hungarians allrebelled against Austria. Germans attempted to create a parliamentfor the first time.After-Effects: 1848
The Unification of Italy Prior to 1860 Italy was made up of many smallstates, some of which were controlled by Austriaor France. 1860 – Piedmont convinced several states in thenorth to join together peacefully 1860 – Garibaldi took some states by force –with an army of 1000 soldiers. By 1871 – Venetia and Rome had joined andmodern Italy was united.
The Unification of Germany Germany was also divided into a bunch of smallstates, the largest and most powerful of which wasPrussia. It was able to gain strength throughindustrializing faster than other countries. 1851 – the Zollverein (customs union) joined severalstates to Prussia. 1866 – winning a war against Austria gave Prussiacontrol of more German-speaking territory 1871 – winning a war against France gave Germanycontrol over Alsace and Lorraine (and helped createa disagreement that helped lead to World War I)