Power Point

Section 3:
The Age of Napoleon
Chapter 6, Section 3 & 4
• Key Terms and People: plebiscite, Continental System, nationalism,
Hundred Days, indemnity, reactionary
• Guiding Questions: How did Napoleon rise to power and dominate
Europe? What were Napoleon’s most important policies? What events
caused disaster and defeat for Napoleon? What did the Congress of
Vienna achieve? What is the legacy of the French Revolution?
• Main Ideas: Napoleon Bonaparte rose through military ranks to
become emperor over France and much of Europe. After defeating
Napoleon, the European allies sent him into exile and held a meeting in
Vienna to restore order and stability to Europe.
The Directory
(Where we left off last lesson)
• Many of the Reign of Terror victims
were former Jacobin leaders with
Robespierre. In 1794, Robespierre was
arrested, tried, and executed.
• The Directory (conservative) ruled from
1795-1799. Largely unsuccessful and
• 1799, Napoleon Bonaparte staged a
coup d’etat and seized power.
Napoleon (1769-1821)
• Officer under Louis
• General at age 24.
• Early success gained
him notoriety.
Energy, charm,
and ability to
make quick
Intelligence, ease
with words, &
Napoleon as Emperor
• He overthrew the
Directory, imposed a
new constitution, and
named himself first
• In 1804 crowned himself
emperor by plebiscite,
or vote.
The crowning of Emperor Napoleon I
Napoleon as Stabilizer
• Napoleon brought stability to France through the Civil
Code and the Concordat.
• The Concordat made peace with the Catholic
Church, recognizing Catholicism as the religion of
France. In return the Pope would not ask for the
return of seized church lands.
• The Civil Code (Napoleonic Code) affirmed the
political and legal equality of all adult men, religious
freedom, and economic equality.
• Although Napoleon established stability in France, his
desire for an empire, created disaster for the rest of
Napoleon as Authoritarian
• Limited free speech, routinely
censoring newspapers
• Established a secret police
force and detained thousands
of political opponents
• Manipulated public opinion
through systematic propaganda
• Ignored elective bodies
• Surrounded himself with loyal
military officers
• Set his family above and apart
from the French people
Joseph Fouche, head of
Napoleon’s secret police
Building the Empire
• Napoleon’s Grand Army defeated the
Austrian, Prussian & Russian armies.
• His Empire was composed of three
major parts: the French Empire,
dependent states, and allied states
• A sense of nationalism grew within
France and conquered states
Britain's Survival
The aim of the Continental System, a
blockade on trade to GB, was to stop British
It failed, Allied States resented being told
not to trade with Britain, others began to
cheat, others resisted.
Britain’s survival was due primarily to its
naval power. (Despite Napoleon’s
Peninsular War
(Guerrilla War)
• Napoleon now controlled almost
the entire European continent.
• Efforts to enforce the Continental
System eventually led him into war
on the Iberian Peninsula and later
• His traditional methods that had
brought victory elsewhere did not
work in Spain.
• The loss of Spain, survival of GB,
and rise in nationalism
contributed to the eventual
collapse of Napoleon’s Empire.
Napoleon made his brother
Joseph the king of Spain
• In 1812, Napoleon decided to invade Russia
(Russian Campaign), believing that the
Russians and Czar Alexander I, was
conspiring with the British.
• He assembled a massive army of 600,000
soldiers, but this limited Napoleon’s mobility.
• Napoleon captured Moscow, but the Russians
refused to surrender, and retreated for
hundreds of miles into Russia.
• They burned their own villages & countryside
to keep Napoleon’s army from finding food.
Napoleon abandoned Moscow late in October 1812 and began
the “Great Retreat”. Less than 40,000 out of the original 600,000
managed to arrive back in Poland in January 1813.
Defeat and Return
• The Coalition
(enemies and former
allies) forced Napoleon
to abdicate his throne in
April 1814, restored the
French monarchy (Louis
XVIII), and exiled
Napoleon to the island
of Elba, near Corsica.
• In March 1815,
Napoleon escaped,
returned to France,
reconstituted his army,
and went to Paris.
• Louis XVIII fled to
Napoleon's Return
• French allies declared Napoleon an
outlaw, and many French who despised
him for dragging France through years
of war, were not happy.
• However, thousands cheered him upon
his return, beginning his Hundred
Days of renewed glory.
The Final Defeat
At Waterloo in Belgium on June 18, 1815,
Napoleon met a combined British &
Prussian army under the Duke of
Wellington & suffered a bloody defeat. By
the end of the day casualties totaled
around 50,000
This time, the victorious allies exiled
Napoleon to St. Helena, a small island in
the South Atlantic.
Peace Negotiations
• About 700 diplomats met at the Congress of
Vienna to discuss order and stability after the
Napoleonic Wars.
• Reactionaries, wanted to restore Europe to its old
monarchies and compensate allies for their losses.
• National borders were redrawn to strengthen the
countries bordering France. The Kingdom of the
Netherlands and the German Confederations were
formed. GB received foreign territories. Charles
Maurice de Talleyrand (leader of France) was
instrumental in these new boundaries.
• France was also forced to pay a large indemnity for
damages during the wars.
Legacy of the French
• Even though monarchs ruled again,
Europe’s monarchs and nobles would
no longer be secure in their privileges.
• A few years after Napoleon’s fall,
massive revolutions spread in Europe
from end to end.
• Ideas from the FR inspire people
around the world to date.
Wrap Up
• How did Napoleon rise to power?
• How did Emperor Napoleon come to dominate
• What were Napoleon’s most important policies?
• What events caused disaster and defeat for
• What did the Congress of Vienna achieve?
• What is the legacy of the French Revolution?

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