The French revolution was one of the bloodiest events in recent history. Over twelve brief months in 1793-1974 more than 30,000 French were guillotined. But out of this carnage a new order was born which put an end to the new regime. This meant that a talented person could rise higher into political life than ever before. Napoleon Bonaparte was such a person. Although, the son of a minor noble, he became on of France's greatest leaders. An examination of his meteoric rise to power, his military and political campaigns, his downfall and his lasting achievements will shed some light on this great leader.
Napoleon was born in 1796 on the island of Corsica, the son of a minor noble. After his elementary education he attended a French military academy where he trained as an army officer
Because of all the officers departing as émigré's, Napoleon rose rapidly through the ranks. As a junior officer he solved the problem of the Paris moles with a "whiff of grapeshot". In 1793 he led the French troops to victory over the Britain at Toulon. By the time he was twenty-seven he was a general and became a dictator at thirty clearly his talent was unmistaken.
Although napoleon we a genius in many ways, he wasn't so good when it came to personal relationships.
Napoleon seems to have chosen his wife with great care. In 1794 he almost married a 16 year old from Marseilles, but instead he choose Josephine Beauharnais. She was seven years his senior; a widow with two children. She had, however, come from a prominent family and belonged to Parisian high society. After the were married in march of 1796, Napoleon spent only two days with her before leaving to take command of the French army in Italy. Rumors of Josephine's unfaithfulness seem to suggest that this marriage was motivated by political reasons rather than love.1
Perhaps one reason that Napoleons marriage never worked out was because he was very conceited. Napoleon is reported to have said "I am no ordinary man". To a large degree he was right. Napoleon was said to have spoken very quickly this means he thought very quickly to. Napoleon was able to make bold decisions in a split second. This made his life easier on the battle field which meant support from the public and the soldiers.
At the age of twenty seven, Napoleon had invaded the country of Italy. After several brilliant...