The Empress Josephine by Pierre-Paul Prud’hon, 1805-09
Evolution of Early Nineteenth Century Fashion (1809-1828)
Exploit of the Mounted Regiment in the Battle of Austerlitz by Bogdan Willewalde, 1884
Napoleon from Brienne to St. Helena in one postcard. They seem a little confused with the Consulate though.
The Russian victory over the French army in 1812 was a significant blow to Napoleon’s ambitions of European dominance. This war was the reason the other coalition allies triumphed once and for all over Napoleon. His army was shattered and morale was low, both for French troops still in Russia, fighting battles just before the campaign ended and for the troops on other fronts. Out of an original force of 615,000, only 110,000 frostbitten and half starved survivors stumbled back into France. The Russian campaign was the decisive turning-point of the Napoleonic Wars, and ultimately led to Napoleon’s defeat and exile on the island of Elba. For Russia the term Patriotic War became a symbol for a strengthened national identity that would have great effect on Russian patriotism in the 19th century. The indirect result of the patriotic movement of Russians was a strong desire for the modernization of the country that would result in a series of revolutions, starting with the Decembrist revolt and ending with the February Revolution of 1917.
(depicted above: General Raevsky leading a detachment of the Russian Imperial Guard at the Battle of Saltanovka).
French troops, 1808, by C. Geissler
Note the squirrel on the hussar’s shoulder…
Posthumous portrait of Jacques Cathelineau - Anne-Louis Girodet de Roussy-Trioson (1824)
Hello once again to the wonderful world of Napoleonic Heraldry!
Today we look at the wonderful brothers of the Bonaparte Family! Yes, the ones which Napoleon carried to their positions as Kings (for most, but we’ll get to that in a sec)
First we start off with the Eldest, Joseph.
As we all know, Joseph was first made the King of Naples, and the coat of arms work really well. One problem you may find with Napoleonic heraldry is the Blue on Blue issue, like what you see here, with the blue of the imperial arms clashing with the blue of the shield, which doesn’t match well. There are times when it does, but this isn’t one of those times. But then we all know about his disastrous move to Spain, whi….. wait, hold on a sec. Apparently, there’s another set of arms for his rule in Naples. Let me pull that up here……..
oh god no……..
OH GOD WHAT IS THIS MONSTROSITY!!!!!
ITS TOO MUCH!! TOO MUCH!!! JOSEPH YOU CAN’T JUST TRY AND FIT EVERYTHING IN!!! YOU GOT TO MODERATE!!! OH GOD GET THE SPANISH ARMS UP NOW!!!
Oh thank god, traditional Spanish heraldry. See Joseph? This is what you do, you just get the important ones and moderate from there. Actually, there is a slight difference here between the original Spanish arms and this one, and its not the eagle. There are six sections on this shield instead of 5, the Granada arms were supposed to be jutting out from the bottom, but actually shares that place with the arms for Gibraltar. Interesting considering the pillars would normally support the shield rather than be in it. Perhaps some one was jealous of the battle of Gibraltar?
But now moving on to the arms of Lucien Bonaparte, the third son of the Bonapartes!
Wait, hold on this is just the regular arms, where are his arms as the Prince of Canino? Ah! Here they are!
huh, its exactly the same… no that can’t be right let me look, there has got to be some other….
Nope, that is he shield during the hundred days and STILL it is just the regular Corsican Arms. Hmm, let me do a bit of looking here…..
AH! Now that makes lots of sense. You see, Lucien and Napoleon were not in the best of relations. Lucien was an actual supporter of the Jacobin cause, going by the nickname of Brutus (the old Roman hero of the Roman Republic) However, during Brumaire, he aided his brother in the coup, by spreading disinformation to the Council of Five Hundred and by telling the soldiers stopping Napoleon that if he Betrayed the Revolution that he would personally run his sword through Napoleon himself. It seems that despite knowing that Napoleon did just that, he would not run his sword through him. Instead after some time resisting an arranged marriage with the Bourbons of Spain,fleeing to Rome, and getting captured by the British (Napoleon thought he fled there on his own) Napoleon struck him from the Almanacs. That breach in their relationship explains a lot regarding his lack of the Imperial Eagle anywhere, or even the use of the Canino arms in his shield.
However, he does patch things up, supporting the Imperial cause when Napoleon returned during the Hundred Days, so who denies that blood is thicker than water?
but that is all the time for today! next time, on Napoleonic Heraldry, we will finish with the brotherly love with Louis and Jerome Bonaparte!
See you next time!
Marie Therese Charlotte of France, Duchess de Angouleme - Antoine Jean Gros
Napoleon before the battle by Guido Sigriste, 1895
Hello once again to the world of Napoleonic heraldry!
This time, we look to the arms of the Wives of Napoleon, Josephine and Marie Louise
Now, Before she was a Bonaparte, and even before she was a Beauharnais, she was a Tascher, and Goddamn is it an ugly shield. The X’s are not so much the problem as the contrast with it and those two suns on top, and even if the shield was for a man it still would seem out of place.
I skipped her Arms when she was with Napoleon cause… well…. it was a
….. cause what else would she have? she’s his wife, at least until politics came in. But even as a Duchess of Navarre, she still had a good set of arms. She still kept the Eagle due to her previous connection, and the black and white sections are that of the Beauharnais family (you know, the previous husband of Josephine before he got executed?)
I have no clue what the Yellow and green stripes are though. One would assume it would be representative of navarre, but that is not the proper arms for Navarre (we will get to that with Joseph).
Now we have Marie Louise of Austria
of course, due to her status, Napoleon could not have her just take up the eagle, so he had to settle with have the Bonaparte and Hapsburg be equal under the mantle (though I am quite sure both sides really wanted nothing to do with the other, but that is politics)
Of course, when Napoleon finally fell, she simply returned to the Hapsburg fold, along with the Eaglet, and she just became the Duchess of Parma
We see the complete Purge of any Napoleonic influence, which I’m quite certain it was by design (there can only be ONE Eagle of Europe says the Hapsburgs *ignores Prussia and Russia*)
But, as a coat of arms, it looks pretty good. It is well balanced, striking, and still of the Hapsburg style ( well, i mean the family arms is also right in the middle of it, but I meant besides that)
But that is it for the Wives of Napoleon!
Next time, We will begin to look at the Siblings of the Bonaparte Family!