“Adieu, my friends. Would I could press you all to my heart.”
“Farewell to the Old Guard” speech, The Courtyard, Fontainebleau, France, Wednesday 20 April 1814
Napoleon Bonaparte was born on 15 August 1769 and died on 5 May 1821. As Emperor Napoleon I, he was the French military and political leader whom many consider one of the (perhaps the) most influential in French history. Born in Corsica, he trained at military school in France and rose through the ranks with astonishing speed, becoming politically powerful and with a reputation as a brilliant campaign planner and soldier.
He became Emperor during the chaos following the French Revolution, in which the established order of nobility and royalty had been all but totally ...