By Alexander Grab

Alexander seize explores the impression of Napoleon's domination all through his empire and the reaction of the Europeans to his rule. this crucial booklet makes a speciality of the advancements and the occasions within the ten states that comprised the Grand Empire: France itself, Belgium, Germany, The Illyrian Provinces, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain and Switzerland. seize discusses Napoleon's exploitation of occupied Europe and especially his reform rules, and assesses their good fortune in reworking Europe.

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Obviously, the changes introduced by Napoleon needed time to take firm root. Countries brought into the Napoleonic sphere of influence after 1806–7, like the Duchy of Warsaw or Illyria, had a relatively short exposure to French reform policies and insufficient time to get used to the changes and enforce the reforms in a meaningful way. Time was also a factor in training state bureaucrats. Local officials needed time to gain expertise in the new French legal system and administrative procedures, while the population had to have time to get accustomed to and accept the new rules and institutions.

The Convention and the Directory had prohibited British trade with France and its satellites, a policy that continued under the Consulate and the early Empire. Two important factors stimulated Napoleon to declare the blockade at the end of 1806: the defeat at Trafalgar made it abundantly clear that a French invasion of Britain was unfeasible; and secondly, the expansion of Napoleonic domination in Europe in 1805–6 and control of the northern coast of Europe, in particular, following the defeat of Prussia, enabled the Emperor to impose such an unprecedented system on the Continent.

9 They were strong advocates of civic liberties and vociferously opposed Bonaparte’s rising dictatorial power. Many of 40 Napoleon and the Transformation of Europe them, most notably Marie-Joseph Chénier, Pierre Daunou, Jean-Baptist Say, and the most outstanding among them, Benjamin Constant, were members of the Tribunate. Those “Ideologues,” as Bonaparte derogatorily labeled them, used the Tribunate to criticize the government and challenge various legislative proposals, such as the Concordat, the formation of the Legion of Honor, and the restoration of slavery in the colonies.

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