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Monday, February 11, 2019

Napoleon Bonaparte -A Master Orator and Propagandist

Napoleon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 - 5 May 1821) was a French Statesman and Military leader who rose to the top during the French revolution of 1789 and fought several other battle to maintain his grips to power.  He declared himself the Emperor of France from 1804 until 1814 and after exiled he returned again but was defeated completely this time. 
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He is considered to be history greatest commanders and his tactics are widely studied at military academy all over the world. Napoleon military capacity helped him ruled over almost Western and Central Europe from his French capital in Paris but it was never peaceful because it was marked with wars and battles after another. 

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Napoleon travel to the French mainland for the first time in 1778 after his father secured him a position at the prestigious Royal Military College in Northern France,  at the age of 16, Napoleon began his apprenticeship as a Second Lieutenant at the Elite Artillery Unit. 
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His ambition and public approval inspired him to go further, and he became the first Emperor of the French in 1804. Intractable differences with the British meant that the French were facing a Third Coalition by 1805. Napoleon shattered this coalition with decisive victories in the Ulm Campaign and a historic triumph over the Russian Empire and Austrian Empire at the Battle of Austerlitz which led to the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire . In 1806, the Fourth Coalition took up arms against him because Prussia became worried about growing French influence on the continent. Napoleon quickly defeated Prussia at the battles of Jena and Auerstedt, then marched his Grande Armée deep into Eastern Europe and annihilated the Russians in June 1807 at the Battle of Friedland.
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 France then forced the defeated nations of the Fourth Coalition to sign the Treaties of Tilsit in July 1807, bringing an uneasy peace to the continent. Tilsit signified the high-water mark of the French Empire. In 1809, the Austrians and the British challenged the French again during the War of the Fifth Coalition , but Napoleon solidified his grip over Europe after triumphing at the Battle of Wagram in July.
Napoleon then invaded the Iberian Peninsula, hoping to extend the Continental System and choke off British trade with the European mainland, and declared his brother Joseph Bonaparte the King of Spain in 1808. The Spanish and the Portuguese revolted with British support. The Peninsular War lasted six years, featured extensive guerrilla warfare, and ended in victory for the Allies against Napoleon. The Continental System caused recurring diplomatic conflicts between France and its client states, especially Russia. The Russians were unwilling to bear the economic consequences of reduced trade and routinely violated the Continental System, enticing Napoleon into another war. The French launched a major invasion of Russia in the summer of 1812.
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The campaign destroyed Russian cities, but did not yield the decisive victory Napoleon wanted. It resulted in the collapse of the Grande Armée and inspired a renewed push against Napoleon by his enemies. In 1813, Prussia and Austria joined Russian forces in the War of the Sixth Coalition against France. A lengthy military campaign culminated in a large Allied army defeating Napoleon at the Battle of Leipzig in October 1813, but his tactical victory at the minor Battle of Hanau allowed retreat onto French soil.
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The Allies then invaded France and captured Paris in the spring of 1814, forcing Napoleon to abdicate in April. He was exiled to the island of Elba off the coast of Tuscany , and the Bourbon dynasty was restored to power . However, Napoleon escaped from Elba in February 1815 and took control of France once again. The Allies responded by forming a Seventh Coalition which defeated him at the Battle of Waterloo in June. The British exiled him to the remote island of Saint Helena in the South Atlantic, where he died six years later at the age of 51.
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