History Central News

Jan 2008
55
Denmark
I hope it's ok with the moderators on this forum that I create this thread to post news from our online history magazine/blog The History Central. If not please feel free to delete it.

Sunday has been chosen as our new weekly release day, where we'll publish at least one new article. Today's article is by Jon Leslie Helmandollar, and can be read here

A small excerpt from the article:

THE FALL OF NAPOLEON’S MARSHALS

The amount of historiography covering Napoleon Bonaparte’s reign over most of Europe is exhaustive, even for figure and period of such importance. Whether focused on his rise to power or his fall from it, nearly every aspect of Napoleon’s twenty-year dominance of the Continent has been examined by historians and strategists aiming either to glorify or vilify his legacy. The attention paid to his fall from power, however, has been overwhelmingly biased towards his personal blemishes and flaws, and fatal mistakes. His growing megalomania, insatiable quest for glory on the battlefield, complicated personal relationships with friends and foes alike, strategic error in invading Spain and Russia, and a fixation on Berlin in 1813 rank among these. From this it is easy to see that the list of charges holding Napoleon in particular accountable for Imperial France’s crumbling is extensive. This essay, however, makes the attempt to diverge from the anti-personality cult aspect of Napoleonic history and limit personal attacks on his character and abilities, and instead focus on outside contributions that his numerous generals made, both in the field and in the political arena, to the fall of the French juggernaut. After all, the Empire that was forged by the sword also fell by it, in no small part due to defeat on the battlefield, and Napoleon couldn’t be everywhere at once.
Using personal memoirs of and addresses dictated by Napoleon, as well as the prior work of scholars who have skirted the topic before, this essay aims to show how some of Napoleon’s most trusted lieutenants failed to live up their leader’s high standards of generalship, investigates their strategic and tactical errors, and demonstrates how, ultimately, many of them betrayed Napoleon by defecting to the Allies or turning their backs away when the upper hand was lost. Others were unfortunately killed in battle or in accidents, striking heavy blows to Napoleon’s command ability in dealing with the large enemy forces squared against him in the final, decisive battles. Finally, an overall idea will be drawn of what Napoleon, for his part, could have done to prevent or alleviate the problems caused by some of his generals.
 

Belisarius

Forum Staff
Jun 2006
10,359
U.K.
Nice post. No-one has a problem with you doing regular posts so long as they remain focused on historical subjects. Would you like me to move this to the European History Forum?
 
Jan 2008
55
Denmark
Nice post. No-one has a problem with you doing regular posts so long as they remain focused on historical subjects. Would you like me to move this to the European History Forum?
Great. I don't think it would be a good idea to move this thread, as I will use it for all our updates, and we plan to add articles about other continents as well.
 

Belisarius

Forum Staff
Jun 2006
10,359
U.K.
Great. I don't think it would be a good idea to move this thread, as I will use it for all our updates, and we plan to add articles about other continents as well.
The Lounge is for discussing non-Historical topics, how about if it was moved into General History?
 
Jan 2008
55
Denmark
We're discussing releasing the articles as a PDF format downloadable magazine instead now and then... probably at first once evere second or third month but hopefully over time more often.

I've been working on a frontpage for the first "magazine"... I'm not yet sure if the style is to be kept, so feel free to add ideas and such: