• Napoleonic War

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Napoleonic Wars

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The Napoleonic Wars were a series of conflicts declared against Napoleon's French Empire and changing sets of European allies by opposing coalitions that ran from 1803 to 1815. As a continuation of the wars sparked by the French Revolution of 1789, they revolutionized European armies and played out on an unprecedented scale, mainly due to the application of modern mass conscription. French power rose quickly, conquering most of Europe, but collapsed rapidly after France's disastrous invasion of Russia in 1812. Napoleon's empire ultimately suffered complete military defeat resulting in the restoration of the Bourbon monarchy in France. The wars resulted in the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire and sowed the seeds of nascent nationalism in Germany and Italy that would lead to the two nations' consolidation later in the century. Meanwhile the Spanish Empire began to unravel as French occupation of Spain weakened Spain's hold over its colonies, providing an opening for nationalist revolutions in Spanish America. As a direct result of the Napoleonic wars the British Empire became the foremost world power for the next century,[1] thus beginning Pax Britannica.

No consensus exists as to when the French Revolutionary Wars ended and the Napoleonic Wars began. One possible date is 9 November 1799, when Bonaparte seized power in France with the coup of 18 Brumaire. 18 May 1803 is probably the most commonly used date, as this was when a renewed declaration of war between Britain and France (resulting from the collapse of the Treaty of Amiens), ended the only period of general peace in Europe between 1792 and 1814. The latest proposed date is 2 December 1804, when Napoleon crowned himself Emperor.

The Napoleonic Wars ended following Napoleon's final defeat at Waterloo on 18 June 1815 and the Second Treaty of Paris.

 

Contents

1 Background 1789–1802

1.1 Start date and nomenclature

2 War between Britain and France, 1803–1814

3 War of the Third Coalition 1805

4 War of the Fourth Coalition 1806–1807

5 War of the Fifth Coalition 1809

6 The Invasion of Russia 1812

7 War of the Sixth Coalition 1812–1814

8 Gunboat War 1807–1814

9 War of 1812

10 War of the Seventh Coalition 1815

11 Political effects

12 Military legacy

13 Last veterans

14 In fiction

15 See also

16 Notes

17 References

18 External links

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Napoleonic_war

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Military legacy

The Napoleonic Wars also had a profound military impact. Until the time of Napoleon, European states employed relatively small armies, made up of both national soldiers and mercenaries. However, military innovators in the mid-18th century began to recognize the potential of an entire nation at war: a "nation in arms".[18]

France, with one of the largest populations in Europe by the end of the 18th century (27 million, as compared to the United Kingdom's 12 million and Russia's 35 to 40 million), seemed well poised to take advantage of the levée en masse. Because the French Revolution and Napoleon's reign witnessed the first application of the lessons of the 18th century's wars on trade and dynastic disputes, commentators often falsely assume that such ideas arose from the revolution rather than found their implementation in it.

But not all the credit for the innovations of this period go to Napoleon. Lazare Carnot played a large part in the reorganization of the French army from 1793 to 1794—a time which saw previous French misfortunes reversed, with Republican armies advancing on all fronts.

The sizes of the armies involved give an obvious indication of the changes in warfare. During Europe's major pre-revolutionary war, the Seven Years' War of 1756–1763, few armies ever numbered more than 200,000. By contrast, the French army peaked in size in the 1790s with 1.5 million Frenchmen enlisted. In total, about 2.8 million Frenchmen fought on land and about 150,000 at sea, bringing the total for France to almost 3 million combatants.

The UK had 747,670 men under arms between 1792 and 1815, and had about 250,000 personnel in the Royal Navy. [citation needed] In September 1812, Russia had about 904,000 enlisted men in its land forces, and between 1799 and 1815 a total of 2.1 million men served in the Russian army, with perhaps 400,000 serving from 1792 to 1799. A further 200,000 or so served in the Russian Navy from 1792 to 1815. [citation needed] There are no consistent statistics for other major combatants. Austria's forces peaked at about 576,000 and had little or no naval component. [citation needed] Apart from the UK, Austria proved the most persistent enemy of France, and one can reasonably assume that more than a million Austrians served in total. [citation needed] Prussia never had more than 320,000 men under arms at any time, only just ahead of the UK. [citation needed; this statement contradicts the first sentence in this paragraph.] Spain's armies also peaked at around 300,000 men, not including a considerable force of guerrillas. [citation needed] Otherwise only the United States (286,730 total combatants), the Maratha Confederation, the Ottoman Empire, Italy, Naples and the Duchy of Warsaw ever had more than 100,000 men under arms. Even small nations now had armies rivalling the size of the Great Powers' forces of past wars. However, one should bear in mind that the above numbers of soldiers come from military records and in practice the actual numbers of fighting men would fall below this level due to desertion, fraud by officers claiming non-existent soldiers' pay, death and, in some countries, deliberate exaggeration to ensure that forces met enlistment-targets. Despite this, the size of armed forces expanded at this time.

The initial stages of the Industrial Revolution had much to do with larger military forces—it became easy to mass-produce weapons and thus to equip significantly larger forces. The UK served as the largest single manufacturer of armaments in this period, supplying most of the weapons used by the Coalition powers throughout the conflicts (although using relatively few itself). France produced the second-largest total of armaments, equipping its own huge forces as well as those of the Confederation of the Rhine and other allies.

Napoleon himself showed innovative tendencies in his use of mobility to offset numerical disadvantages, as brilliantly demonstrated in the rout of the Austro-Russian forces in 1805 in the Battle of Austerlitz. The French Army reorganized the role of artillery, forming independent, mobile units, as opposed to the previous tradition of attaching artillery pieces in support of troops. Napoleon standardized cannonball sizes to ensure easier resupply and compatibility among his army's artillery pieces. [citation needed; Napoleon did not standardize the sizes; it was done by the manufacturer.]

Another advance affected warfare: the semaphore system had allowed the French War-Minister, Carnot, to communicate with French forces on the frontiers throughout the 1790s. The French continued to use this system throughout the Napoleonic wars. Additionally, aerial surveillance came into use for the first time when the French used a hot-air balloon to survey Coalition positions before the Battle of Fleurus, on 26 June 1794. Advances in ordnance and rocketry also occurred in the course of the conflict.
Last veterans
Geert Adriaans Boomgaard (1788–1899) was the last surviving veteran. He fought for France in the 33ème Régiment Léger [19]
Louis Victor Baillot (1793–1898) also from France, was the last Battle of Waterloo veteran. He also saw action at the siege of Hamburg.(See an 1898 photograph)
Pedro Martinez (1789–1898) was the last Battle of Trafalgar veteran. He served in the Spanish navy on San Juan Nepomuceno.[19]
Josephine Mazurkewicz (1784–1896) was the last female veteran. She was an assistant surgeon in Napoleon's army and later participated in the Crimean War.
Pvt Morris Shea (1795–1892) of the 73rd Foot was the last British veteran.[20]
Sir Provo Wallis (1791–1892) was the last Royal Navy officer. He saw action on HMS Shannon during the War of 1812.
Pictures of French veterans in uniform
In fiction
Leo Tolstoy's epic novel, War and Peace recounts Napoleon's wars between 1805 and 1812 (especially the disastrous 1812 invasion of Russia and subsequent retreat) from a Russian perspective.
Stendhal's novel The Charterhouse of Parma opens with a ground-level recounting of the Battle of Waterloo and the subsequent chaotic retreat of French forces.
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo takes place against the backdrop of the Napoleonic War and subsequent decades, and in its unabridged form contains an epic telling of the Battle of Waterloo.
Adieu is a novella by Honoré de Balzac in which can be found a short description of the French retreat from Russia, particularly the battle of Berezina, where the fictional couple of the story are tragically separated. Years later after imprisonment, the husband returns to find his wife still in a state of utter shock and amnesia. He has the battle and their separation reenacted, hoping the memory will heal her state.
William Makepeace Thackeray's novel Vanity Fair takes place during the Napoleonic Wars—one of its protagonists dies at the Battle of Waterloo.
The Duel, a short story by Joseph Conrad, recounts the story based on true events of two French Hussar officers who carry a long grudge and fight in duels each time they meet during the Napoleonic wars. The short story was adapted by director Ridley Scott into the 1977 Cannes Film Festival's Best First Work award winning film The Duellists.
Le Colonel Chabert by Honoré de Balzac. After being severely wounded during the battle of Eylau (1807), Chabert, a famous colonel of the cuirassiers, was erroneously recorded as dead and buried unconscious with French casualties. After extricating himself from his own grave and is nursed back to health by local peasants, it takes several years for him to recover. When he returns in the Paris of the Bourbon Restoration, he discovers that his "widow", a former prostitute that Chabert made rich and honourable, has married the wealthy Count Ferraud. She has also liquidated all of Chabert's belongings and pretends to not recognize her first husband. Seeking to regain his name and monies that were wrongly given away as inheritance, he hires Derville, an attorney, to win back his money and his honor.
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas, père starts during the tail-end of the Napoleonic Wars. The main character, Edmond Dantès, suffers imprisonment following false accusations of Bonapartist leanings.
The novelist Jane Austen lived much of her life during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, and two of her brothers served in the Royal Navy. Austen almost never refers to specific dates or historical events in her novels, but wartime England forms part of the general backdrop to several of them: in Pride and Prejudice (1813, but possibly written during the 1790s), the local militia (civilian volunteers) has been called up for home defence and its officers play an important role in the plot; in Mansfield Park (1814), Fanny Price's brother William is a midshipman (officer in training) in the Royal Navy; and in Persuasion (1818), Frederic Wentworth and several other characters are naval officers recently returned from service.
Charlotte Brontë's novel Shirley (1849), set during the Napoleonic Wars, explores some of the economic effects of war on rural Yorkshire.
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Brigadier Gerard serves as a French soldier during the Napoleonic Wars
Fyodor Dostoevsky's book The Idiot had a character, General Ivolgin, who witnessed and recounted his relationship with Napoleon during the Campaign of Russia.
The Hornblower books by C.S. Forester follow the naval career of Horatio Hornblower during the Napoleonic Wars.
The Aubrey–Maturin series of novels is a sequence of 20 historical novels by Patrick O'Brian portraying the rise of Jack Aubrey from Lieutenant to Rear Admiral during the Napoleonic Wars.
The Sharpe series by Bernard Cornwell star the character Richard Sharpe, a soldier in the British Army, who fights throughout the Napoleonic Wars.
The Bloody Jack book series by Louis A. Meyer is set during the Second Coalition of the Napoleonic Wars, and retells many famous battles of the age. The heroine, Jacky, soon meets none other than Bonaparte himself.
The Napoleonic Wars provide the backdrop for The Emperor, The Victory, The Regency and The Campaigners, Volumes 11, 12, 13 and 14 respectively of The Morland Dynasty, a series of historical novels by author Cynthia Harrod-Eagles.
The Richard Bolitho series by Alexander Kent novels portray this period of history from a naval perspective.
Dinah Dean's series of historical novels are set against the background of the Napoleonic Wars and are told from a Russian perspective - "The Road to Kaluga", "Flight From the Eagle", "The Eagle's Fate", "The Wheel of Fortune", "The Green Gallant" - follow a small group of soldiers (and their relatives) over months of campaigning from the fall of Moscow up to the liberation of Paris, the last 3 books - "The Ice King", "Tatya's Story", "The River of Time" - fall some years later but have the same cast of characters.
Julian Stockwin's Thomas Kydd series portrays one man's journey from pressed man to Admiral in the time of the French and Napoleonic Wars
Simon Scarrow - Napoleonic series. Rise of Napoleon and Wellington from humble beginnings to history's most remarkable and notable leaders. 4 books in the series.
The Lord Ramage series by Dudley Pope takes place during the Napoleonic Wars.
Jeanette Winterson's 1987 novel The Passion (book)
Science fiction and fantasy
Bryan Talbot's graphic novel Grandville is set in an alternate history in which France won the Napoleonic War, invaded Britain and guillotined the British Royal Family.
The Temeraire series by Naomi Novik takes place in alternate-universe Napoleonic Wars where dragons exist and serve in combat.

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Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries had its humble beginnings as an idea of a few artisans and craftsmen who enjoy performing with live steel fighting. As well as a patchwork quilt tent canvas. Most had prior military experience hence the name.

 

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries.

 

Vendertainers that brought many things to a show and are know for helping out where ever they can.

As well as being a place where the older hand made items could be found made by them and enjoyed by all.

We expanded over the years to become well known at what we do. Now we represent over 100 artisans and craftsman that are well known in their venues and some just starting out. Some of their works have been premiered in TV, stage and movies on a regular basis.

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Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries a Dept of, Ask For IT was started by artists and former military veterans, and sword fighters, representing over 100 artisans, one who made his living traveling from fair to festival vending medieval wares. The majority of his customers are re-enactors, SCAdians and the like, looking to build their kit with period clothing, feast gear, adornments, etc.

Likewise, it is typical for these history-lovers to peruse the tent (aka mobile store front) and, upon finding something that pleases the eye, ask "Is this period?"

A deceitful query!! This is not a yes or no question. One must have a damn good understanding of European history (at least) from the fall of Rome to the mid-1600's to properly answer. Taking into account, also, the culture in which the querent is dressed is vitally important. You see, though it may be well within medieval period, it would be strange to see a Viking wearing a Caftan...or is it?

After a festival's time of answering weighty questions such as these, I'd sleep like a log! Only a mad man could possibly remember the place and time for each piece of kitchen ware, weaponry, cloth, and chain within a span of 1,000 years!! Surely there must be an easier way, a place where he could post all this knowledge...

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