Summary of Napoleonic Wars 1805 - 09: March of the Eagles

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00:00:00 - 01:00:00

In this video, the events of the Napoleonic Wars are covered, specifically the French victory at the Battle of Jena-Auerstädt and the British victory at the Battle of Trafalgar. Napoleon's army was eventually defeated at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.

  • 00:00:00 This video covers the Napoleonic Wars of 1805-1815, during which the French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte attempted to conquer Europe by marching his vast army across Europe, culminating in an unsuccessful campaign against the Austrians in 1809. Allied forces, including the British and Austrians, banded together to stop Napoleon, and eventually defeated him at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.
  • 00:05:00 At Ulm, in October 1805, Napoleon's army trapped and defeated an Austrian army under Mack. This success led to the eventual occupation of Vienna. In December 1805, Napoleon faced a significant Allied army at the Battle of Austerlitz. Although the Allies had the advantage of higher ground, Napoleon's careful planning and execution resulted in a French victory.
  • 00:10:00 The French win a decisive victory at the Battle of the Three Emperors, breaking the Allied center and trapping their left wing.
  • 00:15:00 In 1805, Napoleon's France was in a position of great power and strength, due in part to his successful campaigns against Austria and Russia. However, Napoleon's attention was drawn to the British victory at the Battle of Trafalgar, which ensured British naval dominance in the war. This led to a series of humiliating peace negotiations which resulted in France paying a 40-million-franc indemnity and ceding more territory to the British. This was followed by the disastrous Battle of Austerlitz, which saw Napoleon victorious over the combined forces of Austria and Russia. Prussia, fearing for its own safety, decided to join the Fourth Coalition against Napoleon, and in the ensuing Battle of Jena-Auerstedt, the Prussian army was heavily defeated. This led to Prussia joining the Coalition against Napoleon, and the eventual French victory at the Battle of Waterloo.
  • 00:20:00 Napoleon's army of 166,000 men and 256 guns defeat a much larger Prussian army near Jena, forcing the Prussians to retreat.
  • 00:25:00 In the 1805 Napoleonic Wars, Napoleon's Grande Armée routed a Prussian army at the battles of Jena-Auerstädt. Marshal Davout, nicknamed the "Iron Marshal," was heavily involved in the victory, suffering 25% casualties but inflicting twice as many losses on the Prussians.
  • 00:30:00 In the video, Prussian losses in the Napoleonic Wars are shown, as well as Napoleon's attempt to trap Bennigsen near Pułtusk. In the end, the Russian army captured a French courier carrying Napoleon's orders, and Bennigsen, deciding not to give up the city of Königsberg, turned to give battle at Eylau. The battle was one of the most brutal of the Napoleonic Wars, with both sides refusing to back down. Marshal Augereau's Seventh Corps lost its way in the snowstorm and was casualties.
  • 00:35:00 In 1805, Napoleon's French army was beset on all sides by enemies, but with the help of a few brave soldiers, he was able to hold them off and continue his march to Russia. At the Battle of Friedland, the outnumbered French were able to hold off a much larger Russian force, but were then relieved by reinforcements from Napoleon himself.
  • 00:40:00 The French army attacked the Russian army, routing them and winning a decisive victory.
  • 00:45:00 In 1805, Napoleon was in control of Europe. He had defeated Austria, Prussia, and Russia, and was allied with Russia and Austria. The British were still undefeated, and the Continental System was not effective. In 1807, the French invaded Portugal. They were met with resistance and were not successful. The Peninsular War was beginning.
  • 00:50:00 In 1805, Napoleon ordered all territory controlled by France or its allies to stop trading with Britain - the "Continental System." However, Portugal continued to trade with Britain, so Napoleon sent an army to occupy the country. The Spanish people saw the French military presence as the latest in a long line of humiliations, and held chief minister Manuel Godoy responsible. The French were not just arrogant foreigners trampling on their national honor, they were godless atheists who, during the French Revolution, had rejected the Pope and Catholic Church. The Spanish army joined by militias and partisans, and attacked French troops. French soldiers carried out savage reprisals, and the countless atrocities horrified Francisco Goya. At first it seemed the French would easily put down the revolt, but Girona, Valencia and Zaragosa were besieged by French troops, while the Spanish Army of Galicia was routed by Marshal Bessières at the Battle of Medina del Rioseco. The Spanish took 18,000 French prisoners - about half of whom later died of starvation. Bailén was a humiliation for France - her first major defeat since Napoleon became emperor.
  • 00:55:00 In 1805, the French army was advancing rapidly through Spain in an attempt to capture Madrid. However, the British arrived and were able to stop the French. Moore then retreated back to Portugal.

01:00:00 - 01:30:00

In this video, the events of the Napoleonic Wars in 1805 are summarized. The French army, led by Napoleon, is pitted against the well-equipped Austrian army. The Austrians are able to break through Napoleon's lines several times, but each time Napoleon is able to send in reinforcements and push the Austrians back. In the end, the French are able to retake both Aspern and Essling, and the battle is considered a French victory.

  • 01:00:00 The 1st French Empire army, led by Napoleon Bonaparte, marches 250 miles to the coast, in order to be evacuated by the Royal Navy. For both sides, the race to the sea was an exhausting slog through mountains, mud, and bitter cold. Many fell by the wayside, but the rearguard fought several skilful delaying actions, and kept the French at bay. Soldiers of Britain's elite 95th Rifles were prominent in these skirmishes, wearing green uniforms for better concealment. Unlike the standard smoothbore musket, rifles had spiral grooves in the barrel that spun the bullet as it was fired, making them slower to load but much more accurate. In one legendary incident during Moore's retreat, at Cacabelos, Rifleman Tom Plunkett killed a French general at 400 yards. Thanks to the skill of the rearguard, and the desperate pace of the retreat, the British kept one step ahead of the French. On New Year's Eve, Napoleon received grave news from Paris – rumours of plots, and Austria mobilizing once more for war. The Emperor immediately left for France, taking many of his best troops with him... and entrusted Marshal Soult and Second Corps with finishing off the British
  • 01:05:00 The Napoleonic Wars continue in 1809 with an Austro-French war. Napoleon is away in Spain fighting the Spanish, and is forced to return to Paris to deal with the Austrians. He summons troops from Spain to help him, but this leads to a shortage of troops in Germany, which allows the British to march south and cross the Rhine.
  • 01:10:00 In this video, Napoleon's 1805 campaign is summarized. The German allies in the Confederation of the Rhine were no longer as effective as they had been in previous years, and Napoleon was not able to use his usual tactics. However, with the help of Marshal Berthier and Marshal Davout, the French were able to defeat an Austrian army at several battles. After the Austrian army retreated across the Danube, Napoleon chased them and captured Vienna in May 1805.
  • 01:15:00 The French army, under the command of Napoleon, is faced with a large and well-equipped Austrian army. The Austrians are able to break through Napoleon's lines several times, but each time Napoleon is able to send in reinforcements and push the Austrians back. In the end, the French are able to retake both Aspern and Essling, and the battle is considered a French victory.
  • 01:20:00 In 1805, Napoleon's army was defeated by the Austrians at the Battle of Aspern-Essling. This battle showed Napoleon that the Austrians were a formidable foe, and led to him concluding that the Danube River no longer mattered to his army. In July 1809, Napoleon led his army in a massive assault against the Wagram plateau, which ended in a victory.
  • 01:25:00 The Napoleonic Wars continued in 1805, with France trying to break through Austrian defenses. However, the Austrians were able to hold off the French with stubborn resistance, and the battle resulted in heavy casualties on both sides. In the end, Napoleon was forced to use his reserves to try and secure his left flank, and the war continued.
  • 01:30:00 The Battle of Wagram was a brutal slugging-match, the biggest and bloodiest battle yet seen in European history. French victory came at unprecedented cost: an estimated 37,500 casualties, against 41,500 Austrian. Four days later, French troops caught up with the retreating Austrians at Znaim. As the fighting escalated, Charles knew he could not withstand the French a second time, and asked for a ceasefire. But he had not consulted his older brother Emperor Francis, who was furious when he heard the news. Not least because long-awaited British support was finally on the way... Three weeks after the Battle of Znaim, the largest amphibious force Britain had ever assembled – 35 ships of the line and 39,000 troops – landed at Walcheren Island, on the Scheldt Estuary. Its aim was to destroy French shipping and naval stores. But following the successful bombardment and capture of Vlissingen, British commanders let the initiative slip from their grasp. Their force was bottled up by French troops on the marshy Dutch coast, where it was decimated by fever and dysentery. About 4,000 died. Many more became permanent invalids. The survivors were evacuated back to England in December. Emperor Francis, informed

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