32. Napoleonic Wars



Napoleon came to power as 1st Consul Emperor of France in 1799 been crowned in 1804, under the title of Napoleon I. And in 1805, Napoleon organized a huge fleet to attack England, but a British fleet commanded by Horatio Nelson destroyed a combined Franco-Spanish force ending the French threat at sea.

In 1805, Napoleon also launched his armies in an attack on Austria, defeating her in December. The following year invaded Prussia and defeated it. In 1807 came the Russians. In 1809, Austria returned to the fight, but was again defeated.

In the Iberian Peninsula, in 1807, Napoleon attacked Portugal and in 1808, Spain, naming his brother Joseph Bonaparte as King of Spain. The Iberian peoples revolted and British troops landed in Portugal. Napoleon forced them to a withdrawal to northern Spain. While the guerrilla forces and the Spanish armies were wearing the French and forced Napoleon to maintain a huge army in Spain, the Portuguese army, reconstituted and ally to the British under the command of Wellington, concentrated the defense of Portugal, leading to the victory over the French. In May 1813, the Anglo- Portuguese army began the liberation of Spain.

In 1812, Napoleon was determined to crush Russia, coming with six hundred thousand men in June. What he did not know was that the Russians had abandoned his own capital, leading major government documents, and the royal family. The purpose of this was to create a trap for Napoleon, who dropped it. Accustomed to plunder towns and using food gifts in them, the French army encountered the low agricultural production and strict Russian winter. Arriving in Moscow, Napoleon hoped to be able to find the czar force him to Napoleon crowned king, but found the city in flames, empty. We then took Moscow, but met with lack of supplies and in full Russian winter. Had to withdraw amid deaths of their soldiers from hypothermia and starvation, losing the majority of his soldiers. Austria, Prussia and other German states resumed the war, and in October 1813 a combined force of Russians, Prussians and Austrians defeated Napoleon at the Battle of Leipzig. This abdicated in April 1814 and was exiled to the island of Elba.

The Napoleonic wars had repercussions in Brazil after the invasion of the Iberian peninsula in 1807. With the arrival of the Portuguese Royal Family to Brazil in 1808, and the transfer of administration to Rio de Janeiro, the Prince Regent issuing the Decree Opening Ports to Friendly Nations.

In March 1815 Napoleon escaped from Elba and returned to France. The French king, Louis XVIII fled, and Napoleon found himself again in power. Hastily met an allied army that defeated Napoleon in Belgium at Waterloo in June. Napoleon was exiled again, this time to the island of Saint Helena in the South Atlantic, where he died in 1821. Napoleon Bonaparte is considered one of the greatest strategists of history.





32. Napoleonic Wars



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