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3th Coalition 1st part (English Version)

Article fait par :Claude Balmefrezol

Mis en ligne le 24/03/2008 à 10:28:43


The 3th Coalition 1st part
French Version

2nd part   3rd part
Europe in 1800
Czar Alexander I (1777 1825)  King of Prussia Frederic Whillem III (1770 1835)   Jing of United Kinkdom Georges III
(1738 1820 )
SAI Napoleon I (1796 1821 )  King Of Spain Charles IV (1748 1819 )  Austrian Imperator Francois II
(1768 1835)  

In 1804 England is awaiting an invasion of its territory by French troops. Indeed peace of Amiens flew in brightness, by the will of England more thant France because it was a way for England to recover one’s wind and put in sleeping its adversary. The signing of the treatye by Lord Hawksbury Minister English was a way to "maintain the integrity of the British Empire,” and obtain for his allies the best possible conditions to ensure the conservation of their conquests made by British Army during the war ". Peace of Amiens has indeed benefited most economically to France than England
The French /British rivalry was essentially a struggle for economic influence because the two nations are growing and need opportunities are mainly found on the Continent
The rivalry grows the British to mount European sovereigns against France who worry about the Napoleon hegemonic policy and the spread of revolutionary ideas In summary, it was therefore no question for the France ,bloodless exit of Wars Revolution, could become a competitor under the direction of an energetic leader
They therefore seek by all means to push France to the fault and war
The European sovereigns to varying degrees are therefore being involved into this conflict, with a Alexendre 1st who has anti revolution crusader , Francois II, which though defeated in Italy wants revenge against France for a story of family, ' Is this not the nephew of Marie Antoinette. .The Sovereigns of the Two Sicilies and Sweden are fiercely reactionary and therefore potentially dangerous, and Prussia is still on a waiting stance. Rest Spaniards Batavian Republic and the Italians republics has to be neutral or favorable to France
The failure of the Treaty of Amiens

Signing of the Treaty of Amiens (Amiens Town Hall)

Despite international agreements England refuses to deny full of Article 10 of the Treaty to hand the administration of the island of Malta to the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem 3 months after the conclusion of the Treaty. Indeed, the English refuse to make the island on the pretext that it is the key to the Mediterranean. Bonaparte would d also told at Lord Witworth. "France can move back in this point without come back on the rest. This would be contrary to the honour. Xe come back upon this point English will request Dunkirk "
France when it has deliver the goods by evacuating in a period of 3 months Naples Taranto Romans States . On May 2sd 1803 English Ambassador introduced a note notifying that England had decided
1st to retain the island of Malta for 10 years
2sd that the island of Lampedusa is in full ownership ceded to the British crown
3th the French troops could be evacuated Holland.
The response should be made within 6 days.
Cleverly Bonaparte took refuge behind traitiesd by stating that he could not make the decision on its own without reference to Spain for Spain and Holland Moreover Prussia Russia and Austria had brought guarantor of the execution of the Treaty . For the island of Lampedusa it is not the property of France, therefore, could not require him for this territory.
On May 16th 1803 The London Gazette published a text that is a declaration of war against France. In the same day the English grab all commercial vessels and Dutch presents on English r ports .1200 boats quickly changed owners. In addition, the Royal Navy bombed the ports of Granville. Faced with this attack the french stopped the British nationals present in the Territory and at the same time on May 26th a military operation is launched on Hanover stronghold of the British crown. The commander in chief of British troops the Duke of Cambridge son of King George III cowardly abandoned his troops strong of 39000 men who were beaten by the 30000 french commanding by the future Marshal Mortier. Therefore this operation assured mastery of the Mouth of Wyser and Elbe to the french forbidden the british navigation in this countries
The consequences of this rupture
Peace of Amiens signed in 1802 did not even lasted 1 year. This state of war found therefore 2 Powers face to face? One mainland France and other maritime England, sovereign seas with a powerful Royal Navy who controls a large maritime area of the West Indies in through the Mediterranean.
France control central and north Italy, Holland. In addition, France is an ally of Spain and is on good terms with the Germans States while England is alone in his isolated island
But all this is a delicate balance because, as explained in the previous chapter certain crowned heads aspire only to fight with France
The crossing of the English Channel
Ah if Napoleon had waited a bit!!
The project of the Raid in England
The breach of the peace Amiens leads reactivation projects of landing in England; Napoleon Bonaparte would have even declared "adescent and a stay of 2 months in England would be peace for France during 100 years”
On the other hand England does not remain inactive at the diplomatic level, and it starts to weave links to take on it France
Face to the lack of success of these armed she used the "Cavalry of St Georges' so she pays subsidies to the various enemies of France. It will be paid between 1793 and 1815 66 million £ is the equivalent of 1milliard 500000 gold francs of the day to thwart the designs of France
The situation in England
Lord Haddington (1757/1844) His Majesty George III (1738 / 1820)   William Pitt the younger (1759 1806)

It is worrying both economic and military terms, in fact spies also emphasize the fact that the British army is not ready to repel an invasion. Indeed the last invasion dates back to 1066. The best troops are in India and the Home land army his stong of 70000 sodliers
In addition, the English did not have an energetic leader with his sovereign George III s mad and pacifist 1st minister in the person of Addington . This crisis at the head of the country allaow William Pitt and his allies Wardham, Grenville, Dundas, and behind them the great merchants to exert pressure on Addington to adopt a belligerent policy toward France. In addition it don’t forget the French opponents of the regime stay in England as the HQ of Vendee and emigration among its members the Duke of Berry, the Comt d'Artois and the Prince of Condé

Comt d'Artois future Charles X (1757 1836)
 Duke of Berry son of the Count of Artois (1778 1820)  Prince of Condé (1736 1818)

Attacks by english newspapers, (like the Times) supported by the principle of freedom of the press, are endless. This fierce opposition adversary from France and Peace of Amiens offers a program of government completely turned on the struggle against France
Création a permanent reserve army with obligation of training 1 month/ year
Pitt returned to power in March 1804 started weaving a network of alliances with continental powers who reach in May 1805 to a treaty between Britain and Russia (The execution of the Duc d'Enghien was deeply shocked Czar).
It remained to convince the other power continental Austria. This has been done in August 1805. Austria had when it recognized on the lip the proclamation of the Empire in May 1804. England had everything to gain from the struggle between the empires 3
The situation in France
The failure of that peace entails France in a vast patriotic movement. The moral of the Army is high and the economy is very high
The projects of the raid in England do not date from yesterday. Since the fall of the monarchy in France projects for crossing the Channel are numerous. A draft of descent had been scheduled by the Directoire. An army commanded by a young general had indeed landed in England in 1797 but before the status of the fleet that had been abandoned and the army was then sent to Egypt where his commander in chief was going to cover oneself of glory
In 1801 just before the Peace of Amiens raid projet resurfaced, but peace is concluded quickly. The failure of that peace once again puts the project in front
The war is inevitable. Faced with this new policy which will take effect only in 1805 Bonaparte became the meantime Napoleon decided to reactivate the project of invasion of the "Perfidious Albion."
But if he control the situation on the land he was different from the situation at sea; Indeed it was for thee sea in front of the Royal Navy of Nelson. Indeed to cross the English Channel requires that at Xpoint the invader must be control the sea . It therefore followed a game of cat and mouse between the Royal Navy and la Royale .
The idea takes away the Royal Navy from the English Channel. The idea of bringing the French fleet in the Caribbean. But Nelson does not fall into the trap And the state of French Navy is deplorable.Condition of the vessels and lock of moral of the crew . The Royale cannot really figth in equal terms with the Royal Navy; Fortunately Napoleon will realize in time of the deficiencies of its Navy. And after careful consideration he realises that the alliance Anglo Austrian Russo can truly effective until spring 1806
Cornelian Question?
Two alternatives arise him:
1st Attacking England hoping that the French fleet could block the Royal Navy for 12 hours. The time needed for crossing the Channel
2sd Use the Army of the Coast to attack Austria before 1806 spring
It must therefore choose between 2 options
Avantadges and disadvantage of this 2 options
Direct attack on England to weaken the Coalition but with a big question
The role of the French Fleet with the risk of being isolated on the island in case of destruction of the fleet by the Englishq and at the same time a threat to its rear with the troops Austro Russians
Attack of Austria to weaken the coalition but it is better control the situation
The Coast Army strong 7 armies Corps may at any time be directed towards the centre of Europe
Wait it find itself in a critical situation in the spring of 1806
The choicee will be done quickly; Napoleon inform Berthier to prepare itself for the movement toward the Center Europe. Since Aug. 24 th either 2 months before Trafalgar he chose the option Land and Centre Europe The Coast Army become the Grande Armée
Villeneuve (1763 1806)

 Trafalgar October 21th 1805

Nelson (1758 1805)

But the option of the raid in England, is not abandoned however, significant forces remain on site and Boulogne Camp is still in business. The defeat of Trafalgar in October 1805, deals a severe blow in terms of raid
The choice of Napoleon he was good. Many papers have been published on this issue and there will be many more
But History does not merely assumptions it feeds on real facts.
Returning to Camp de Boulogne
The Camp of Boulogne
Since 1066 no invader has passed a durable landing in England. Do not count the "raids" made in the Middle and and during Modern epoq when France attempt to destabilize the kings of England
So when the Revolution Government stand out of the boxes plans dating from the XVIIIth century, the English are beginning to fear. The “Comité de Salut Public” in 1793 and the Directoire in 1798 does decide to tackle at the achievement of this operation
Why England country that welcomed the first steps of the new republic(, did not dare 150 years earlier beheaded their king?) So why?
It could be argued that the large influence of french immigrants in England during the early years of the Revolution and export policy ideas of the French Revolution with it the creation of Republics Sisters rapidly change the minds of political English elites
Especially since the creation of the Batavian Republic at the mouths of the Scheldt is seen as potentially deadly. Must say that any time port of has been the gateway products made in England on the Continent and Antwerp command Flanders, which is seen as the exclusive private hunting ground for England
In 1801 a 3th attempt is made to unload French troops . Fleet commanded by Admiral Latouche Tréville knock against fleet commanded by Nelson.
Louis Rene Admiral Latouche-Treville (1745 1804)

Peace of Amiens put an end to this attempt. The breach of the peace leads to the reactivation of the preparations for landing that focus mainly around the port of Boulogne
On May 24th 1803 the engineer Forfat was appointed as Inspecteur General de la flotille
On July 1st and November 14th 1803 Bonaparte visit the coast of Boulognes Bonaparte
The camp of Boulogne ( Navy)
French Caricature

Research has been conducted.
To cross the English Channel off 25 Kms fleet carrying 11346 men and 7094 horses must under the protection of the battle ships. For transport it will be built, 4 types of vessels. These vessels will be built in private-sector The influx of orders can be running at full capacity building sites and causes a shortage of labor for other professions. The work is supervised by messengers of 1st Consul as Lauriston and Captain Kersaint
The needs are 300 boats,300 gunboats guns and 700 barges
The whole country is put to good use through the levy of additional taxes Almost all departments voted on advances for the construction of a battle ships cities offered frigate and each municipality with a point of honour to be built or offer for the sum for building prame, gun boat or barge
Paris itself has participated to theconstruction of ships located on two sites the Invalides and the Quai de la Rapée
Only ports in the south could not participate in the construction of ships because boats can not travel on the Canal du Midi to join the English Channel.
The Batavian Republic (Holland) made a significant contribution in the construction of the flotilla
It should be noted that on July 18th 1805 a convoy from Holland was attacked by the English fleet off Ambleteuse. He was saved thanks to the massive intervention of the French artillery pieces with 300 guns to cover the arrival of the convoy)
The receipt of the fleet is 20 pluviôse An XII (10/2//1804)
300 merchant ships were requisitioned and harbourss are designated to serve as a basis for departure
This is Boulogne Vimereux Etaples Ambleteuse
Covoys of ships go along the coasts under the protection of coastal forts and batteries. The attacks of the Royal Navy are numerous
She also regularly attack the port of concentration of the invasion fleet
Dieppe and Fécamp are regularly shelled. The bulk of the fleet is concentrated in Boulogne s under the command of General Combes Everything is organized by the settlement of the fleet of 7/07/1803
But flotilla cant only board 85000 men and 5000 horses. At these 85000 men should be add 12000 men carried on fishing boats armed with guns who will play the role of transport of luggage and food.
The fleet is commanded by Admiral Bruies and she is the object of all the attention of 1st Consul who spends without counting
In the late 1804's fleet includes 10 prames 2 bombards 11 liners 4 caravels 194 rowboats 333 merchants ships 329 barges 84 fishing corvettes
The fleet of transport
Bateau canonnier Boulogne Flottilla  Canonnière Boulogne Flottilla
Corvette canonnière Boulogne Flottilla  barge  Boulogne Flottilla

Prame Boulogne Flottilla

The transport fleet cis strong of about 57 artillery transports 189 boats for the Staff over 53 gunboats s and 275 boats.
The exercises of landing are numerous ans and sometimes Royal navy invite them playing festivals disorders
English Attack with fireships

The teaching are derived from these simulations
It is impossible that the fleet can carry a single rotation whole army on the British coasts Hes will require a 2sd rotation which could see that place at the 2sd tide hence the need to have control over the English Channel with the presence of battle ship to cover the whole to prevent the Royal Navy to attack the fleet
It will take 1 full day for the fleet of Boulogne and 1 day and a half for those of Vimereux and Ambleteuse
During the landing ,artillery boats should cover the approach of troops who arrived when they are close to the beaches of landing support it by the fire of their musketries
The health of the admiral Bruiex declining it is replaced by Admiral against Lacrosse
Eustache Bruix Admiral (1759 1805)

In the spring of 1805 the fleet will consist of 2365 ships armed by 15800 mens under the orders of 1200 officers
The troops assigned to the operation .54074 men and 2180 horses, but the fleet can no longer board than 18720 men and 2083 horses and two weeks of food
The result is known The defeat of Trafalgar and the departure of the Army toward the center of Europe ring the bell of this Project
In Vendémiaire An XIV (1806) by decree the fleet is reduced to 6 prames 108 boats and 18 barges that are reflected with armaments hold
The camp of Boulogne ( land )
Archaeological remains Camp Etaples  La Poudrière de Boulogne
Vestiges Camp de Boulogne button 6 ° leger  Vestiges Camp de Boulogne  Coins


To serve as a base camp for maritime and land operations Bonaparte chooses the region de Boulogne. The port benefited from the important work
Enginneers Corps level the ground for the establishment of the buildings. Then the work focused on the port itself. A Basin docks, piers locks were built or widened
3 forts were built from the fort del Heurt , la Creche and a strong fort in wood
Beside this work on the coast: troops built the camp
The camp will be house for a fairly long period troops was not a boot camp canvas but was built in hard
The camp was in fact a small town with paths mapped to the cord and with names ( names of soldiers who have died in the field of honour or victories names)
The buildings housing the soldiers were barracks built of wood and mud by the soldiers themselves
A vegetable garden and a well was available to the soldiers (1 / company)
But next to this version a little bucolic we must not forget that the Boulogne camp to house an army for the invasion of England, therefore, the exercises were frequent. There was a mixture of troops from veteran revolutionary campaigns and young conscripts. These conscripts from all French provinces have contributed to making this army truly national contrary to the British army, which was at least for this period formed the "rebus" of the society
The life of the camp was marked by daily exercises with a day starting atl 4h 30 mm in the morning and ending at 18 o'clock in the evening
The exercises pick men held three hours a day with oars handling and shooting with marine guns
The Guard itself was not such exercises. Besides Napoleon will create during this period the Marine Corps of the Guard.
The exercises are succeeding on unabated arrived at the figure of 75000 men can be embarqued 17 minutes (in theory)
The camp Boulogne  NavalYards Visit Bonaparte
The camp de Boulogne by JOB La Baraque de l'Empereur

Sometimes inspections were held in the presence of the Emperor. But it is a ceremony in which we will return at greater length and which marked minds: the ceremony of “Remise de la Legion d'Honneur
Discount de la Legion d'Honneur Discount de la Legion d'Honneur


But let us return to our camp
This camp is the crucible forged or future Grande Armée This gigantic Military Academy outdoors will have the logical conclusion in Austerlitz and Jena Friedland Wagram
In addition the presence of this mass of men led to a significant medical supervision and for the first time troops were vaccinated against Smallpox except for the camp Bruges (or been stationed 25000 men under the command of Davout) In this camp illness and climatic hazards caused illnesses to the tune of 20% of the workforce under arms
Distractions were many and varied
The cultivation of vegetable gardens embellishing of barracks theatral representations sail chariot races taverns and casinos tolerated allowed soldiers to breathe
In addition to the visits, however, closely monitored civilians by the Marechaussee (fear of spy) was allowed
The end of camp Boulogne
On September 3th the Coast Army becomes the Grande Armée.
Turning our backs on his enemy and choosing option 2 ° theater of Centere Europe (choice thoughtful dice the month of August)
Army begins to cover the 1400 kms that separates it from Austria at an average speed of 4 km / h with stages of 40 km daily
L'Empereur he had not announced that it would hear the christmass Mass in Vienna while the soldiers said, "the Emperor has found a new way of waging war: It makes use our legs over our bayonets"
The 7 torrents rush therefore to Vienna 196000 men divided into 7 corps armies are in contact with the Russians Austro

Composition of the Grande Armée

SM Napoleon 1° (1769 1821 )

Etat Major Général L ‘Empereur 356 hommes
Marechal Jean Baptiste Bernadotte (1763 1844)

1°CA Maréchal Bernadotte 3 divisions Drouet Rivaud Kellerman artillerie génie 17737 hommes

General Auguste Frederic Marmont (1774 1852 )

2°CA Général Marmont 4 Divisions Boudet Grouchy Dumonceau Lacoste artillerie génie 20758 hommes
Marechal Louis Nicolas Davout (1770 1823 )

3° CA Maréchal Davout 3 Divisions Bisson Friant Gudin cavalerie légère artillerie génie 27452 hommes
MarechalJean de Dieu Soult (1769 1851)

4° CA Maréchal Soult 4 Divisions St Hilaire Vandamme Legrand Suchet cavalerie de Margaron Artillerie Génie 41358 hommes
Marechal Jean Lannes(1769 1809)

5°CA Maréchal Lannes 2 divisions Oudinot Gazan cavalerie légère de Treilhard artillerie génie 17788 hommes
Marechal Michel Ney (1769 1815)

6° CA Maréchal Ney 3 Divisions Dupont Loison Malher Cavalerie légère de Tilly artillerie génie 27407 hommes
Marechal Charles Pierre Augereau 1757 1816 )

7° CA Maréchal Augereau 3 Divisions Desjardins Maurice Matthieu artillerie Génie 14450 hommes
Marechal Joachim Murat (1767 1815)

Réserve cavalerie Maréchal Murat 2 divisions grosse cavalerie Nansouty Hautpoul 4 Divisions de dragons Klein Walther Beaumont Bourcier 1 Division de dragons a pied Baraguay d’hilliers artillerie et génie 22015 hommes
Garde Impériale 6265 hommes

Grands parcs généraux 3885 hommes



Bavarians 23220 hommes
Wurtembergeois 5649 hommes
Badois 2321 hommes
Subtotal of 227 661 hommes

Kingdom of Spain



Napoléon go se to the Coalises who have the following plan
North Forces attack to anovre by Poméranie and after they go to Holland and Belgium
Austro Russians forces by Danub and Rhine Valleys to Alsace and Franche Comté
1 Austrian Army corps under orders of archiduke Charles attack North Italy

For this plan Coalised have
Austrian Forces

1st Army of 80 000 soldiers under orders of Archiduke Ferdinand with général Mack in Baviera waiting the russins forces before invasion France via Switzerland and Franche Comté
2° Army of 100 000 soldiers under orders of Archiduke Charles divided in 2 groups 45000 a Bassano under orders of General Bellegarde et 55000 à Laybach
3° Armée de 30 000 soldiers ( 20000 Tyrol 10 000 Voralberg ) under orders of Archiduke Jean She was the Army reserve

Russians Forces

1 Army of 50000 soldiers under orders of Koutousov en Galicia She can join Austrians troops to attack Bavièra
1 Army of 50 000 in Bohem
1 Army of 40 000 in Prussian Borders

Imperial Guard soldiers under orders of Grand duke Constantin with 12000 hommes

Kingdom of 2 Siciles

He must attack french troops and sisthers republics in Italy

Sweden Kingdom and Hanovre


Attack toward Batavian Republic

Soldiers of the Coalition 362 000

The "Neuters"
Prussian Kingdom

Turkey the Sublime Porte

The chesseboard is now ready . Show must begin

End of the 1st period
Follow soon