Life of Napoleon Bonaparte (Volume II)

Life of Napoleon Bonaparte (Volume II)

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Scott presents a dispassionate, unpartisan view of Napoleon, paying tribute to his military genius and administrative skill and underlining his legacy to France in the form of a national system of education, greatly improved communications, and the Code Napoléon. Refusing to paint him as the bloodthirsty despot presented by many a fellow Tory, Scott notes his mild and humane temperament and genuine love of his country. The seeds of his downfall lie in his progressive self-identification with the French people and in his vision of himself as the man on whom the nation's destiny rested. His life ultimately becomes a tale of hubris, where overweaning ambition and self-blinding egotism lead to defeat in the Russian snows.
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