preview

Was Napoleon A Hero Or A Tyrant?

Good Essays
Napoleon Bonaparte is a controversial figure in history, while some argue that he was a tyrant, others would say that he was a saviour of the French people, and a spreader of secular values. Regardless of one’s opinion, we mustn't neglect the many accomplishments he achieved throughout his reign as Emperor of France. As a young man, Napoleon joined a military academy, where he grew fascinated by famous figures like Julius Caesar, Hannibal Barca, and especially Alexander the Great. With the eruption of the French Revolution, Napoleon was quickly able to rise up through the ranks, eventually leading the French people to a victory over the monarchy, and later, the tyrants of the Reign of Terror. During his reign, he maintained his belief in the ideals of the revolution, which form the current national motto…show more content…
Through his invasions, Napoleon helped spread secular and democratic ideals, which reshaped Europe by abolishing outdated, feudal monarchies and replacing them with independent and secular nation states. One such way was when he defeated the Austrians, abolishing an empire that was “Neither Holy nor Roman nor an Empire”. However, for all his accomplishments, he wasn't without faults. If I were in his position, I wouldn’t have went to war with Russia. Prior to his invasion of Russia, Napoleon attempted to enforce a “Continental System”, which wanted to prevent any nation from trading with Britain. Any nation that wouldn't comply, would be invaded. One of those nations, was Russia. The invasion of Russia was completely unnecessary, not only did it result in giving France’s greatest enemy a new ally, but it drastically weakened the French forces. Napoleon’s Grande Armée numbered at around 600,000 men at the start of the invasion, but once he retreated, he was left with fewer than 80,000. The news that Napoleon had been defeated spread like
Get Access