• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Napoleon came to power in France due to his skills as a soldier" To what extent is this a fair assessment of Napoleon's rise to power?

Extracts from this document...


"Napoleon came to power in France due to his skills as a soldier" To what extent is this a fair assessment of Napoleon's rise to power. The statement: "Napoleon came to power in France due to his skills as a soldier", can be said to be a fair evaluation of Napoleon's rise to power only until a certain extent. Other aspects of Napoleon's life need to be explored to explain how he came to full power in France by 1804. These are: his education, the situation France was in, the support of the army he had, the effective propaganda used by him, his skills as a leader, and of course, the luck he had of all these events getting together and casting him as emperor of France. Let us analyze all of these events and see to which point is this statement a fair assessment to Napoleon's rise to power. Firstly and most importantly, to verify the fairness of this statement lets see the importance of his military skills in his life. In 1785, Napoleon entered the Ecole Militaire Paris; where he was the first Corsican ever, to graduate as a sub-lieutenant of artillery. From this point on, he continued to train his artillery skills for four more years. ...read more.


All people of France feared that all of that which was done at the revolution would be lost. All hopes of France returning to its state of majesty were being lost. People were still shocked with the effects of the Reign of Terror in France. The government, which was set after this historical period, was known as "Directory". It was unpopular and was not supported by the population. Everyone was insecure of what would happen to France in the hands of this new group, which would have the difficult mission, which was to solve the economic problems, which had, just arose and continue to support the revolutionary ideas passed on through the first years of the revolution. All of this unpopularity and insecurity on the new government gave Bonaparte the chance to rise. His will for power was achieved in 1799 in the 'Coup of Brumaire'. Another very important aspect in Bonaparte's rise to power is his ability to use propaganda. Even historians, who don't support Napoleon, agree he had an indescribable ability to use propaganda in his favour. AJP Taylor for instance is someone who doesn't agree to Napoleon's character but says: "The proclamations and bulletins of Napoleon, show him to have been a propagandist of genius..."1 The propaganda Napoleon used was very effective as he was able to create an image of himself as being a young, compassionate, heroic, brave, loyal, talented and magisterial young military officer. ...read more.


When I say he met the right people at the right time, I mean for example he met Josephine his first wife in his early military life. As she was pat of the high aristocracy of France, she was very important in giving him a grater status in society. His war tactics also were helped by his luck. All this luck in his life made his soldier believe him at all times. Therefore, luck made everyone believe him. All trusted him. This was very important. By analyzing all these factors, which did affect Napoleon's rise to power in France we can conclude that it wasn't only his military skills, which were responsible for his escalade to ultimate power in France. But indeed all of these factors had their own importance in Napoleon's rise to power. In my beliefs, if any of these didn't take part of Bonaparte's life, maybe he wouldn't be so successful and so famous until nowadays. Everything in his life worked as if he was born to become a legend. Imagine if his father hadn't decided to become an ally of the French in Corsica. Napoleon wouldn't go study in France and just this simple chance of events would already change all of his life. With this in mind we can see that it wasn't only Napoleon's military skills which were responsible for his conquering of France but all of these events of his life together. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. Did napoleon betray the Revolution?

    In his eyes this meant the need for a strong executive. From 1799 until his death on the South Atlantic island of St. Helena, Napoleon spoke of himself as the man who had completed the Revolution. By this he meant that the basic goals of the Revolution enumerated above had

  2. To what extent did Napoleon enjoy support within France?

    - No organized opposition was tolerated. The number of newspapers was reduced drastically. The ones remaining were heavily censored. Free journalism of the kind that existed in 1789 gave way to government press releases. By 1811 only four newspapers remained in Paris, all toed the official line.

  1. To what extent is it fair to see Napoleon as the betrayer to the ...

    Napoleon confirmed the abolition of the remains of feudalism and ensured that the absolute monarchy swept away by the French Revolution in 1789 would never return again in that form. Napoleon even administered reforms the French Revolution had failed to do.

  2. To what extent was Hitlers rise to power due to Economic Problems?

    Hitler claimed that he was only trying to restore German greatness and many Germans felt that this was a convincing argument.2 The trial gave Hitler a national audience which allowed his views to become more widespread, especially with his semi-autobiographical political manifesto Mien Kampf that he wrote whilst he was in prison.

  1. History - Mussolini's Rise to Power

    This primarily shows an unwillingness to use this strength, putting them in an inadequate spotlight, not in a potent sense, but in a mental sense, a sense of misjudgement and naivety. Yet, some may argue that the Fascist squads were not necessarily disorderly, and that the government's reluctance to oppose any threat was not problematic.

  2. How successful was Napoleon III?

    In 1869 changes were made which ultimately resulted in a 'Liberal Empire.' The changes made meant a return to the sort of parliamentary government that had existed under Louis Philippe, the senate became a proper upper house with the power to delay legislation, the Corps Legislatif became a lower chamber having the power to propose laws.

  1. Why was Napoleon Bonaparte able to become Emperor of France?

    In this aspect, Napoleon was regarded as a national hero. However, he had also introduced several illiberal measures such as censorship, the subordinate view of women, arbitrary arrest, slavery reintroduced to colonies, and the enforcement of a police state. Although these aspects to Napoleon?s rule contradicted the republicanism that was

  2. To what extent was Napoleon nothing more than a dictator?

    At his coronation, he promised to ?rule only in the interests of the happiness and glory of the French people, upholding equal rights/civil liberties? but as his rule continued it was clear that his regime was entirely dictatorial, acting in his personal interest.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work