Napoleon victorious, then what?

Apr 2017
1,404
U.S.A.
#1
If Napoleon was successful in conquering Europe (including Britain and Russia), unified them under his leadership, then what would he do? I doubt Napoleon would stop there, would he focus on conquering the rest of the world?
 
Jun 2015
5,723
UK
#2
No end to the slave trade and/or slavery, unless France became sufficiently industrialised, or there was a similar abolitionist movement as in the UK in the real timeline.

A reduced Brtish Empire, and uprisings throughout Europe. If Napoleon dies, and a weaker person replaces him, then maybe his new Empire would split up.

If his Empire still exists by the time of the US Civil War (it would still exist imho, as the slavery issue and states rights would be key issues), it may side with the CSA (or pro-slavery side if it still is a CSA).
 

Menshevik

Ad Honorem
Dec 2012
9,245
here
#3
No end to the slave trade and/or slavery, unless France became sufficiently industrialised, or there was a similar abolitionist movement as in the UK in the real timeline.

A reduced Brtish Empire, and uprisings throughout Europe. If Napoleon dies, and a weaker person replaces him, then maybe his new Empire would split up.

If his Empire still exists by the time of the US Civil War (it would still exist imho, as the slavery issue and states rights would be key issues), it may side with the CSA (or pro-slavery side if it still is a CSA).
Why would slavery still be around? I thought Napoleon was all about egalitarianism, ostensibly, at least. No?
 
Aug 2015
2,359
uk
#4
Well, most of what Napoleon did was to get at Britain, so if he (somehow) managed to defeat his nemesis along with all of the rest of Europe? He'd be far too busy putting down rebellions throughout his vast empire to consider conquering other territories; however it is possible he may return to Egypt at some point.
 

stevev

Ad Honorem
Apr 2017
3,345
Las Vegas, NV USA
#5
If Napoleon was successful in conquering Europe (including Britain and Russia), unified them under his leadership, then what would he do? I doubt Napoleon would stop there, would he focus on conquering the rest of the world?
The rest of the world? Of course! Why do you even ask? Aujourd'hui la terre, demain la galaxie!
 
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Jul 2017
330
Germany
#6
I thought Napoleon was all about egalitarianism
Well, in a way. As long as he was the boss, the rest was all the same to him - which I guess could somehow qualify as "egalitarianism". :cool:

There's a legend that Maréchal Davout actually brought a map of India to the Russian campaign. Just in case, because ... well, you never know with that Bonaparte guy.

Okay, seriously. I do not think Napoleon had a chance at conquering either Russia or Britain, let alone more than that. But let's assume he somehow managed to find the ressources for both.
With Britain gone, there would be no more need for his "continental system". Which might actually strengthen his position in the vassal states, assuming that their economic situation might get better. Of course, for that to happen, Napoleon would have to give up some of his "France first" policy.
In Russia, he would probably need to replace Alexander and find a new, napoleonic regent. The only brother left is Lucien - doubtful. I equally doubt Joseph would be ready to go on tour once more, give up the throne of Spain and move to St. Petersburg.
I honestly do not know whom he would pick. Murat, maybe? In this case he could unite the papal state, the kingdom of Naples and the kingdom of Italy as a country to rule for a second son. He could also finally install a kingdom of Poland.
Now, as for Britain ... I assume he would try to make a similar arrangement for the royal family as for the Spanish Bourbons: give them money, luxury and women and keep them under strict surveillance. Come to think of it, the Prince Regent and Jerome Bonaparte might actually get along very well, they seem to have a lot in common. I have no idea whom Napoleon could put on the throne.
I wonder if France would actually inherit from Great Britain their domination of the seas, or if they would just squander it way. Most likely the United States would step in as a new power, as I imagine many Brits would flee to America and take their knowledge and their fortune with them.
As for Spain: of course the guerilly war would continue. As would probably a similar civil war in Russia.

I assume Napoleon's next adversary would have been the Ottoman Empire. To take revenge for Egypt, and because that might have been a good target to bring both Russians and Austrians together. I know too little about the Ottomans and care too little about the military stuff to make a guess as to how far he would come.

And in 1821, with Napoleon dead and no adult heir, the empire would come to an end. Maybe there still would be a Vienna Congress, just a couple of years later.
 

Larrey

Ad Honorem
Sep 2011
5,579
#7
I think the terms of what constitutes a "win" here needs some specification.

In one, likely very important, sense a "win" for Napoleon here would constitute in confirming the continued rule of France for a Bonaparte dynasty. There rest is more... detail. That was what Napoleon was primarily working on most of the time.

It's what his mother Laetizia would constantly mutter "If only it will last" over every time her son scored another victory or appointed one sibling or another to be the ruler of some part of Europe.

It's why he divested himself of Josephine in favour of an Austrian imperial princess, etc.

By most accounts Napoleon was perfectly aware that he needed to build things slowly and long-term, and that he was constantly being pulled back into quick-fix military victories that didn't really address the underlying problems. In that sense he became the victim of his own military success. It worked for now for rather a long time. But in the end he still never could catch the break that would allow him to get out of the cycle of wars and work on the long-term stuff. But then, as long as he was militarily successful he always could assume the time would come sometime later — and in any case he needed to win, or the jig would be up anyway.
 
Apr 2011
3,075
New Jersey
#8
If Napoleon was successful in conquering Europe (including Britain and Russia), unified them under his leadership, then what would he do? I doubt Napoleon would stop there, would he focus on conquering the rest of the world?
No, conquering Russia and Britain are already beyond the scope of possibility and, at least as it relates to the former, Napoleon had no intention to actually conquer it to begin with. His focus would be on Europe, he'd have plenty to do there.
 

pugsville

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
9,271
#9
By most accounts Napoleon was perfectly aware that he needed to build things slowly and long-term, and that he was constantly being pulled back into quick-fix military victories that didn't really address the underlying problems. In that sense he became the victim of his own military success. It worked for now for rather a long time. But in the end he still never could catch the break that would allow him to get out of the cycle of wars and work on the long-term stuff. But then, as long as he was militarily successful he always could assume the time would come sometime later — and in any case he needed to win, or the jig would be up anyway.
When you have a hammer everything looks like a Nail.

Napoleon was a poor strategist both militarily and diplomatically. He was often good at working situations and improvising but his long term planning was generally poor.

He was always pretty autocratic and short on patience, he wanted obedience and when people did not dance to his tune , he would turn to the military solution.
 
Jul 2017
330
Germany
#10
In one, likely very important, sense a "win" for Napoleon here would constitute in confirming the continued rule of France for a Bonaparte dynasty. There rest is more... detail. That was what Napoleon was primarily working on most of the time.
[...]
It's why he divested himself of Josephine in favour of an Austrian imperial princess, etc.
Agreed. And in my opinion, that was a battle he never could win. You can force your way into the ranks of those old families. You cannot force them to accept you. After the fall of the empire I believe not a single one of Napoleon's relatives was allowed to keep the rank of a prince, the one exception being Bernadotte (who still did not manage to find a bride for his son) and possibly Pauline (because she was married to an Italian prince and the marriage could not be dissolved).

By most accounts Napoleon was perfectly aware that he needed to build things slowly and long-term, and that he was constantly being pulled back into quick-fix military victories that didn't really address the underlying problems. In that sense he became the victim of his own military success.
I hear you and in some cases I even agree with you. But - Spain? Russia? Even the Netherlands?
As for "building things slowly and long-term" - my interest in Napoleon actually started when I read up on how Napoleon arranged the marriage between his step-son and a princess of Bavaria (which basically constituted Napoleon's entry-ticket into the world of old noble blood). And there was nothing "slow and long-term" there. Napoleon simply enforced his will and tried to make the best bargain (giving as little as possible to the bridegroom).
 
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