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A list of key readings about Napoleon.
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  • Asprey, Robert. The Rise of Napoleon Bonaparte and The Reign of Napoleon Bonaparte. (2002); 2 vol, 1200pp well-written popular biography focusing on the military excerpt and text search
  • Barnett, Corelli. Bonaparte (1978), hostile
  • Dwyer, Philip. Napoleon: The Path to Power (2008), to 1799
  • Emsley, Clive. Napoleon 2003 142 pp, very succinct coverage of life, France and empire; little on warfare
  • Cronin, Vincent. Napoleon (1971), favorable popular bio
  • Dwyer, Philip. Napoleon: The Path to Power (2008), 672 pp; vol 1 of major new biography, to 1799 excerpt and text search
  • Ellis, Geoffry. Napoleon (1997)
  • Englund, Steven. Napoleon: A Political Life. (2004). 575 pages; the best (and most advanced) political biography; thin on military excerpt and text search
  • Fisher, Herbert. Napoleon (1913) 256pp old classic online edition
  • Fournier, August. Napoleon the First: A Biography (1903); 836 pages; excellent old biography online edition
  • Herold, J. Christopher. The Age of Napoleon (1963) 480pp, popular history stressing empire and diplomacy
  • Johnson, Paul. Napoleon: A Penguin Life. (2002). 208 pp. excerpt and text search
  • Lefebvre, Georges: Napoleon, 1969, influential French perspective
  • Markham, Felix. Napoleon 1963. 304pp online edition
  • McLynn, Frank. Napoleon: A Biography (2003) 752pp, stress on military excerpt and text search
  • Rose, John Holland. The Life of Napoleon I: Including New Materials from the British Official Records, (2 vol 1903), old but solid scholarship; online edition vol 1 online edition vol 2
  • Schom, Alan. Napoleon Bonaparte: A Life (1997), 944pp; very hostile; argues Napoleon was a paranoiac psychopath excerpt and text search
  • Thompson, J. M. Napoleon Bonaparte: His Rise and Fall (1954), scholarly, well-balanced in topics, but pro-Britain
  • Tulard, Jean. Napoleon: The Myth of the Saviour (1985), influential French biography
  • Woloch, Isser. Napoleon and His Collaborators: the making of a dictatorship (2001) excerpt and text search

General reference

  • Chandler, David. Dictionary of the Napoleonic Wars (1993)
  • Esposito, Vincent J. and John R. Elting, A Military History and Atlas of the Napoleonic Wars (1999); textbook; includes the West Point maps
  • Fremont-Barnes, Gregory. ed. The Encyclopedia of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars: A Political, Social, and Military History (ABC-CLIO: 3 vol 2006)
  • Furet, François and Mona Ozouf, eds. A Critical Dictionary of the French Revolution (1989), 1120pp; long essays by scholars; conservative perspective; stress on history of ideas
  • Greiss, Thomas E. West Point Atlas for the Wars of Napoleon (1986) 70pp; all maps are online
  • Nafziger, George F. Historical Dictionary of the Napoleonic Era. 2002. 353 pp.
  • Nicholls, David. Napoleon: A Biographical Companion. 1999. 300 pp.
  • Pope, Stephen. Dictionary of the Napoleonic Wars. (2000). 572 pp.
  • Smith, Digby. The Greenhill Napoleonic Wars Data Book (1998); 582pp; data on 2000+ individual battles, clashes, sieges, raids, capitulations, and naval engagements


  • Adkin, Mark. The Waterloo Companion: The Complete Guide to History's Most Famous Land Battle (2002) 448pp excerpt and text search
  • Arnold, James R. Napoleon Conquers Austria: The 1809 Campaign for Vienna. (1995). 247 pp. excerpt and text search
  • Chandler, David. The Campaigns of Napoleon: the Mind and Method of History's Greatest Soldier (1973), 1216pp; experts call it the best military synthesis
  • Cole, Juan. Napoleon's Egypt: Invading the Middle East (2007) excerpts and online search from
  • Connelly, Owen. Blundering to Glory: Napoleon's Military Campaigns (2nd ed 2006) negative on Napoleon's skills
  • Coote, Stephen. Napoleon and the Hundred Days. (2005). 320 pp.
  • Dodge, Theodore Ayrault. Napoleon; A History of the Art of War (1904), old classic online edition
  • Duffy, Christopher. Austerlitz, 1805 (1999)
  • Duffy, Christopher. Borodino and the War of 1812 (1999).
  • Elting, John R. Swords Around a Throne: Napoleon's Grande Armee (1997), influential study
  • Epstein, Robert M. Napoleon's Last Victory and the Emergence of Modern War (1994) on Austrian war of 1809
  • Esdaile, Charles J. The Wars of Napoleon (1995)
  • Esdaile, Charles J. The French Wars 1792-1815. (2001). 96pp online edition
  • Fisher, Todd. The Napoleonic Wars (2001-4) 3 vol; 96pp, short, well-illustrated operational history excerpt and text search vol 1; excerpt and text search vol 2; excerpt and text search vol 3
  • Forrest, Alan. Napoleon's Men: The Soldiers of the Revolution and Empire. 2002. 248 pp.
  • Fortescue, J. W. A history of the British army (19v 1899-1930) full text vol 4 pt2: 1789-1801online edition vol 6: 1807-1809; full text vol 7: 1809-1810; full text vol 8: 1810-1812; full text vol 9: 1813-1814; full text vol 10: 1814-1815
  • Gates, David. The Napoleonic Wars, 1803-1815 (1997) 304pp; attacks Connolly and says N's "brilliance as a military commander has rarely been equalled let alone surpassed"
  • Gill, John. With Eagles to Glory: Napoleon and his German Allies in the 1809 Campaign (1992)
  • Goetz, Robert. 1805: Austerlitz; Napoleon and the Destruction of the Third Coalition (2005). 368pp
  • Griffith, Paddy. The Art of War of Revolutionary France 1789-1802, (1998); 304 pp; excerpt and text search
  • Hamilton-Williams, David. Waterloo: New Perspectives; The Great Battle Reappraised. (1994). 416 pp. excerpt and text search
  • Herold, J. Christopher. Napoleon in Egypt (1962) online edition
  • Kagan, Frederick W. "Russia's Wars with Napoleon: 1805–1815," in The Military History of Tsarist Russia, ed. Frederick W. Kagan and Robin Higham (2002), 106–22.
  • Kagan, Frederick W. The End of the Old Order: Napoleon And Europe, 1801-1805 (2006) first of four promised volumes; covers the strengths and strategies of all the powers excerpt and text search
  • Leggiere, Michael V. Napoleon and Berlin: The Franco-Prussian War in North Germany, 1813. 2002. 384 pp. excerpt and text search
  • Liaropoulos, Andrew N. "Revolutions in Warfare: Theoretical Paradigms and Historical Evidence - the Napoleonic and First World War Revolutions in Military Affairs." Journal of Military History 2006 70(2): 363-384. Issn: 0899-3718 Fulltext: in Project Muse
  • Lieven, Dominic. "Russia and the Defeat of Napoleon (1812–14)" Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 7#2 (2006) 283-308 online in Project Muse
  • Luvaas, Jay. Napoleon on the Art of War (2001) 288 pp. A synthesis, arrangement, and translation of Napoleon's thinking. excerpt and text search
  • Lynn, John A. The Bayonets of the Republic: Motivation and Tactics in the Army of Revolutionary France, 1791–94 (1984); influential analysis excerpt and text search
  • Muir, Rory. Tactics and the Experience of Battle in the Age of Napoleon (2000), 466pp excerpt and text search
  • Nofi, Albert A. The Waterloo Campaign, June 1815. 1993. 333pp online edition
  • Nosworthy, Brent. With Musket, Cannon and Sword: Battle Tactics of Napoleon and His Enemies. (1996). 528 pp.
  • Paret, Peter. "Napoleon and the Revolution of War," in Paret, ed. Makers of Modern Strategy (1986)
  • Pericoli, Ugo.1815: The Armies at Waterloo (1973)
  • Riley, J. P. "How Good Was Napoleon?" History Today, (July 2007) 57#7 10pp in EBSCO
  • Riley, J. P. Napoleon and the World War of 1813: Lessons in Coalition Warfighting. (2000). 480 pp
  • Riley, Jonathon. Napoleon As a General: Command from the Battlefield to Grand Strategy (2007)
  • Rogers, H.C.B. Napoleon's Army (1974)
  • Rothenberg, Gunther. The Napoleonic Wars (2006) 240pp, well illustrated synthesis by leading scholar excerpt and text search
  • Rothenberg, Gunther. The Art of Warfare in the Age of Napoleon 1978
  • Schneid, Frederick C. Napoleon's Italian Campaigns: 1805-1815. (2002); 229pp online edition
  • Tarle, Eugene. Napoleon's Invasion of Russia, 1812. 1942. online edition

Impact on France

  • Bergeron, Louis. France under Napoleon (1981), French viewpoint
  • Forrest, Alan. "Propaganda and the Legitimation of Power in Napoleonic France." French History, 2004 18(4): 426-445. Issn: 0269-1191 Fulltext: in OUP journals
  • Furet, François. The French Revolution, 1770-1814 (1996), pp 211-65 on Napoleon
  • Furet, François and Mona Ozouf, eds. A Critical Dictionary of the French Revolution (1989), 1120pp; long essays by scholars; conservative perspective
  • Goubert, Pierre. The Course of French History. 1991; French textbook; ch. 14 online edition
  • Lyons, Martyn. Napoleon and the Legacy of the Revolution (1994)
  • Paxton, John. Companion to the French Revolution (1987), hundreds of short entries.
  • Scott, Samuel F. and Barry Rothaus. Historical Dictionary of the French Revolution, 1789-1799 (1984), short essays by scholars
  • Sutherland, D.M.G. The French Revolution and Empire: The Quest for a Civic Order (2nd ed 2003), comprehensive survey
  • Sutherland, D.M.G. France 1789–1815. Revolution and Counter-Revolution (2nd ed. 2003, 430pp excerpts and online search from

Diplomacy and impact on Europe

  • Blanning, T.C.W. The French Revolutionary Wars 1787-1802 (1996).
  • Broers, Michael. Europe under Napoleon 1799-1815 (1996) 291pp, covers everything except the battles
  • Bruun, Geoffrey. Europe and the French Imperium, 1799-1814 1938. excellent survey of all of Europe
  • Dwyer, Philip G. ed.Napoleon and Europe, (2001), essays by scholars on each major power
  • Ellis, Geoffrey. The Napoleonic Empire (1991)
  • Grab, Alexander. Napoleon and the Transformation of Europe. (2003), pp. 249, maps; excellent synthesis excerpt and text search
  • Hill, Peter P. Napoleon's Troublesome Americans: Franco-American Relations, 1804-1815 (2005)
  • Lyons, Martyn. Napoleon and the Legacy of the Revolution (1994)
  • Muir, Rory. Britain and the Defeat of Napoleon, 1807-1815. (1996). 466 pp.
  • Parker, Harold T. "Why Did Napoleon Invade Russia? A Study in Motivation and the Interrelations of Personality and Social Structure," Journal of Military History 54 (April 1990): 131–46. in JSTOR
  • Rothenberg, Gunther E. "The Origins, Causes, and Extension of the Wars of the French Revolution and Napoleon," Journal of Interdisciplinary History, Vol. 18, No. 4, (Spring, 1988), pp. 771-793 in JSTOR
  • Rude, George F. and Harvey J. Kaye.Revolutionary Europe, 1783-1815' (2000), scholarly survey
  • Schroeder, Paul W. "Napoleon's Foreign Policy: A Criminal Enterprise," Journal of Military History 54 (April 1990): 147–62. Highly negative
  • Schroeder, Paul. The Transformation of European Politics, 1763-1848. 1996; Elaborate detail; advanced history; very hostile to Napoleon; online edition
  • Woolf, Stuart. Napoleon's Integration of Europe (1991) 320pp online edition
  • Cambridge Modern History (1907) vol 9: Napoleon online edition, older articles by scholars, 900pp

Historiography and Memory

  • Black, Jeremy. "Why the French Failed: New Work on the Military History of French Imperialism 1792-1815." European History Quarterly 2000 30(1): 105-115. Issn: 0265-6914 Fulltext: in Sage journals
  • Dunne, John. "Napoleon: For or against ... and Beyond." History Review. Issue: 27. 1997. pp 17+. online edition
  • Geyl, Pieter. Napoleon: For and Against (1949) online edition
  • Hazareesingh, Sudhir. "Memory and Political Imagination: the Legend of Napoleon Revisited." French History, 2004 18(4): 463-483. Issn: 0269-1191 Fulltext: in Oxford up
  • Lieven, Dominic. "Russia and the Defeat of Napoleon (1812-14)." Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 2006 7(2): 283-308. Issn: 1531-023x Fulltext: in Project Muse. Argues Alexander's successful strategy has been neglected
  • Pinkney, David. ed., Napoleon: Historical Enigma (1969)

Primary Sources

  • Dwyer, Philip G. and Peter Mcphee, eds. The French Revolution and Napoleon: A Sourcebook. (2002) 213pp online edition