An essential volume of Napoleon’s wisdom on the art of war.
Nearly two hundred years after his death, Napoleon remains widely regarded as one of the greatest military commanders of all time. Here, in one volume, is the essence of Napoleon’s knowledge and wisdom, the fruit of his practical experience, and his study of the great empire-builders from Alexander to Frederick the Great. Working from the best among previous editions of Napoleon’s maxims, including the work produced in 1901 by William E. Cairnes, noted Napoleonic historian David G. Chandler has contributed commentary that examines Napoleon’s work from the twentieth-century perspective of the two world wars, Vietnam, and other conflicts, and analyzes the ways in which commanders have observed or failed to observe Napoleon’s teachings.
The Military Maxims of Napoleon is a unique collection of tenets on the art of war. They reveal the principles on which his military, diplomatic, and political triumphs were built. Now every military student and enthusiast can benefit from the brilliance of Napoleonic insight and wisdom.
“The Military Maxims of Napoleon provides a most valuable insight into the Napoleonic art of war . . . David G. Chandler is the foremost modern authority on the subject, which makes this work essential reading.” Philip J. Haythornthwaite, author of Invincible Generals
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About the Author
David G. Chandler was the head of the department of War Studies at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and the author of many books, including Napoleon’s Marshals, The Campaigns of Napoleon, and Dictionary of the Napoleonic Wars. He died in 2004.
Table of Contents
Table of Maxims 7
General Introduction David G. Chandler 13
Introduction to the 1901 Edition William E. Cairnes 35
Preface to the Original Edition 53
Maxims Extracted From the Writings and Conversations of the Emperor Napoleon I 55
Original Annotations Supplemented and Updated David G. Chandler 83
Appendix A The Eight Generals Mentioned in the Maxims by Name 245
Appendix B Thematic Table of Maxims 249
Further Reading 251