Why did Napoleon abolish the Marseillaise?

Sep 2010
3,538
Somewhere in the former First French Empire
#1
You may think I know everything about Napoleon already, well no :). It appears that Napoleon abolished the Marseillaise during his reign, but I can't find out why. He replaced it with the Chant du Depart that I know, but why he got rid of the Marseillaise I don't know. Maybe it is as simple that he disliked the song or perhaps their are other reasons behind it. Any suggestions or certainties?

[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKtCVblxDRc&feature=related]Napoleon Bonaparte : la marseillaise - YouTube[/ame]
 
Apr 2011
1,286
Melbourne
#2
It's quite simple, actually.

If you think about it, what are les paroles to La Marseillaise? Its provocativeness, its tendency and past reliance to stir up and incite rebellion, was of course not desirable to Napoleon. Nor were its words entirely complimentary, reminding contre nous de la tyrannie (against us is tyranny) - although it could be well reminded, however, that he didn't abolish it, but only removed its official standing; Veillons au salut de l’Empire was another song he favoured in its stead.) And nor would it later be pleasing to Louis XVIII, either, who also (this time completely, as far as I remember) banned it. And so it would again under Napoleon III (it had been restored after the July Revolution).
 
Sep 2010
3,538
Somewhere in the former First French Empire
#4
He did play it after his victory at Austerltz though, but mainly to please his army. The Chorus of the Chant du Depart aren't exactly favorable to his reign either:

The Republic is calling us
Let's know how to vanquish or let's know how to perish
A Frenchman must live for her
For her a Frenchman must die

The Republic? While he had transformed it into an Empire.

The reason you gave me already passed my mind, but thanks cause it now confirms it.
 
Aug 2010
6,740
Ireland
#5
I've always heard he abolished it because of it's Revolutionary connotations. Makes sense he didn't want another one of THOSE springing up.
thats always what i figured the reason was as well. it was entirely associated with the revolution and as such the Terror. still the people loved it though and one thing the french army always kept up was a feeling of esprit de corps so i would have though it would be better keeping it anyway.
 

Belloc

Ad Honorem
Mar 2010
5,418
USA
#6
He did play it after his victory at Austerltz though, but mainly to please his army. The Chorus of the Chant du Depart aren't exactly favorable to his reign either:

The Republic is calling us
Let's know how to vanquish or let's know how to perish
A Frenchman must live for her
For her a Frenchman must die

The Republic? While he had transformed it into an Empire.

The reason you gave me already passed my mind, but thanks cause it now confirms it.
Yeah but its urging Frenchmen to sacrifice for their country, and that was compatible with Napoleon's needs at the time.