Napoleonic Wars, 1803 -1815

Date from 01 January 1803
Date to 31 December 1815
Collection type Conflict
Scope note The Napoleonic Wars (1803-1815) involved Napoleon's French Empire and a shifting set of European allies and opposing coalitions. As a continuation of the wars sparked by the French Revolution of 1789, they revolutionized European armies and played out on an unprecedented scale, mainly due to the application of modern mass conscription. French power rose quickly, conquering most of Europe, but collapsed rapidly after France's disastrous invasion of Russia in 1812. Napoleon's empire ultimately suffered complete military defeat, resulting in the restoration of the Bourbon monarchy in France. Meanwhile the Spanish Empire began to unravel as French occupation of Spain weakened the Spanish hold over its colonies, providing an opening for nationalist revolutions in Latin America. No consensus exists as to when the French Revolutionary Wars ended and the Napoleonic Wars began. Possible dates include November 9, 1799, when Bonaparte seized power in France; [citation needed] May 18, 1803, when Britain and France ended the only period of peace in Europe between 1792 and 1814,[citation needed] and December 2, 1804, when Bonaparte crowned himself Emperor.[citation needed] The Napoleonic Wars ended following Napoleon's final defeat at Waterloo (18 June 1815) and the Second Treaty of Paris. Some sources (in the United Kingdom) occasionally refer to the nearly continuous period of warfare from 1792 to 1815 as the Great French War, or as the final phase of the Anglo-French Second Hundred Years' War,[1][2][3] spanning the period 1689 to 1815. o War of the Third Coalition (1803-1806). 18 May 1803 Britain's declaration of war on France 1806. Note: Bonaparte was crowned Emperor of France on 2 Dec. 1804. o War of the Fourth Coalition (1806-1807). End date was the Treaty of Tilsit, signed 7 & 9 July 1807. o War of the Fifth Coalition (10 April 1809 14 October 1809). Austrian invasion of Bavaria - Treaty of Schönbrunn. o War of the Sixth Coalition (24 June 1812 11 April 1814). French invasion of Russia Treaty of Fontainebleau (abdication of Napoleon). o War of the Seventh Coalition (20 March 1815 20 November 1815). Napoleon s return to power in Paris Treaty of Paris.