Coming up as a French ruler and leader, Napoleon Bonaparte used the French Revolution to help improve the lives of the French, causing French citizens everywhere to worship the ground he walked on. Over time Napoleon’s political and military accomplishments became irrelevant due to his uncontrollable greed and never ending quest for power. Though his name now comes with a bad connotation, Bonaparte did affect the world in positive ways such as education, art, and literature but was “anti-progressive” when it came to the rights of his people.
Napoleon, born on August 15th, 1769 on the tiny island of Corsica, was the second born of eight children to a poor lawyer who had little connection to royalty (Dugdale). Napoleon’s family was considered radical by many and as a boy Napoleon fully embraced his Corsican heritage. Because of his mother’s adulterous relationship with French Military Governor Comte de Marbeuf, he started his education at Brienne Military Academy. In 1784 Napoleon worked vigorously to finish his schooling in a little over a year rather than the required three years (Dugdale). This was a simple task for young Napoleon as he excelled at science and math. Such skills were necessary for any artillery officer of the time (Dugdale). After school Napoleon spent a lot of the next 8 years in Corsica supporting a Corsican Rebel named Pasquale Paulo. Paulo had previously been a benefactor of Napoleon's father. Eventually the revolution came about and forced the Bonaparte family to evacuate France, giving Napoleon a bitter taste for his previous associate Pasquale Paulo. With no outstanding credentials, Napoleon used the characteristics of the revolution to quickly rise in the ranks. Napoleon first showed off his skill at the Siege of Toulon. At this point in time Napoleon was merely an artillery captain under General Jacques Dugommier (Dugdale). Napoleon’s path to status and power was well on its way.
Liberty, prosperity, and equality inspired many people as the French Revolution started in the late 1700’s. Napoleon Bonaparte evolved into an important figure that could possibly find a way to renew order in France and eventually gained an immense following. Sadly, Napoleon's lust for power and status destroyed everything the French Revolution was originally created to defend. Napoleon began to intentionally hurt other countries' economies, but in turn ravished the economy of his own people. Focused on conquering Europe, Napoleon failed to spend adequate time running his own country, eventually failing completely as a leader. Napoleon's sanctions and policies caused his people’s rights to suffer, rather than establishing the liberty they had longed for. In the end, Napoleon Bonaparte caused more pain than anything. In some instances Napoleon did have creative solutions and positive changes (such as the Napoleonic Code) but usually abandoned such causes for personal gain.
Though eventually poison to the nation, Napoleon did...