Their Own Worst Enemy
Young General Bonaparte's amazing string of victories in 1796- 1797 receives the most attention in studies of the Revolutionary Wars. But Napoleon was appointed to his command by the new government of France, called the Directory. After the excesses of the Reign of Terror, many people hoped for stable, moderate rulers. Instead, they were exploited by two corrupt Directors who, when they were not plotting against the other three Directors, had to fend off numerous coup attempts by Royalists and Leftists alike. The continuing chaos helped set the stage for Napoleon's eventual coup.
By Todd Fisher
Units and Uniforms:
They were considered the senior line regiments of the French heavy cavalry. Unlike the armored cuirassiers, the two regiments of carabiniers initially wore no armor and sported tall bearskin hats, befitting their title of Grenadiers of the Cavalry. After playing a prominent role in the new Grande Armée's victory at Austerlitz in 1805 the carabiniers were underemployed during the campaigns of 1806-07. Their first great test came during the 1809 campaign against Austria when they were called upon twice to hold the center and suffered terribly for their efforts. This led to a new uniform with cuirass and helmet, which they wore into Russia in 1812. Destroyed during the campaign, they did not regain their level of quality until 1815. But at Waterloo, the carabiniers, along with the rest of the French cavalry, would be wasted in a grand but futile series of charges.
By Matt DeLaMater with uniform illustrations by John Sanheim
A Sword for Napoleon
Colonel John J. Elting is perhaps the most respected American Napoleonic scholar. Author of the classic Swords Around a Throne and many other works, Elting's insight ranges from the minute detail of uniforms to the intricacies of how Napoleon's army functioned. A combat veteran of World War II, he has a perspective on warfare that few modern scholars can match. Dr. June Burton conducts Napoleon magazine's fourth interview by correspondence which features Elting's unique style and insight.
TalonSoft's Napoleon in Russia
After Waterloo, Napoleon's epic campaign of 1812 in Russia may be the most well-known of his 19 years in the field. Continuing to win rave reviews for their graphic depiction of the battlefield terrain and Napoleonic military formations, TalonSoft's design team moves east to recreate the dramatic battle of Borodino.
By Robert Hoy
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