Napoleon Bonaparte

(Napoleon I)

Napoleon Bonaparte
Napoleon Bonaparte
  • Born: August 15, 1769
  • Died: May 5, 1821
  • Nationality: French
  • Profession: Emperor; Military Leader & Emperor

139

Quotes

50

Citations

232

Concepts

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Videos

Napoléon Bonaparte was a French statesman and military leader who rose to prominence during the French Revolution and led several successful campaigns during the French Revolutionary Wars. He was Emperor of the French from 1804 until 1814 and again briefly in 1815 during the Hundred Days. Napoleon dominated European and global affairs for more than a decade while leading France against a series of coalitions in the Napoleonic Wars. He won most of these wars and the vast majority of his battles, building a large empire that ruled over continental Europe before its final collapse in 1815. He is considered one of the greatest commanders in history, and his wars and campaigns are studied at military schools worldwide. Napoleon's political and cultural legacy has endured as one of the most celebrated and controversial leaders in human history.

Quotes About
Author Quote
Victor Hugo Napoleon—mighty somnambulist of a vanished dream.
Alexander I That infernal creature who is the curse of all the human race becomes every day more and more abominable.
William Cobbett The truth is that the fall of Napoleon is the hardest blow that our taxing system ever felt. It is now impossible to make people believe that immense fleets and armies are necessary.
Isaac Brock Estranged from the powerful protection of the United Kingdom, you must be re-annexed to the dominion of France from which the provinces of Canada were wrested by the arms of Great Britain, at a vast expense of blood and treasure, for no other motive than to relieve her ungrateful children from the oppression of a cruel neighbor.
Ralph Waldo Emerson Take egoism out and you would castrate the benefactors. Luther, Mirabeau, Napoleon, John Adams; and our nearer eminent public servants,—[Horace] Greeley, Theodore Parker, [Henry] Ward Beecher, Horace Mann, [William Lloyd] Garrison would lose their vigour.
Friedrich Engels If ... the taking over the tobacco trade by the state was socialistic, Napoleon and Metternich would rank among the founders of Socialism.
Napoleon Bonaparte Spaniards, after a long agony your nation is perishing. I have seen your ills and I shall remedy them.
Pierre Victurnien Vergniaud Citizens, we have reason to fear that the Revolution, like Saturn, will successively devour all its children, and only produce despotism and the calamities which accompany it.
Quotes
Quote Topics Cited
… a rich nation always defends itself badly. Defense & National Security
… it is at home and not in public that one should wash ones dirty linen. Secrecy & Transparency
A man who goes into a country must comply with the ceremonies in use there. Law, Courts, Jails, Crime & Law Enforcement
A revolution is an idea that has found bayonets. Rebellion, Revolution, Insurgency & Resistance
A throne is only a bench covered with velvet. Leaders & Leadership ;Memorials, Monuments, Medals, Statues & Buildings
Alexander, Caesar, Charlemagne, and I founded empires. But on what did we rest the creations of our genius? Upon force. Jesus Christ founded His empire upon love; and at this hour millions of people would die for Him. Religion & God
Among those who dislike oppression are many who like to oppress Miscellaneous
Bloodletting is among the ingredients of political medicine. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising ;Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
Even in war moral power is to physical as three parts out of four. Power
Events carry within them an invincible power. The unwise destroy themselves in resistance. The skillful accept events, take strong hold of them and direct them. History
Experience has taught that a divided power in the state is impotent and at odds with itself. Power
For the maintenance of peace, nations should avoid the pin-pricks which forerun cannon shots. War & Peace ;Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
For too long, this pack of slaves purchased in the Caucasus and Georgia has tyrannized the better part of the world…If Egypt is theirs to farm, then let them show the lease God gave them for it. A curse on the Mamlukes and happiness to the people of Egypt. Leaders & Leadership
Great men have this in common with the Divinity that they never die entirely. Their spirit survives them. Leaders & Leadership
History is a never ending argument. History
History is the version of past events that people have decided to agree upon. History
I have no wish to interfere in the internal affairs of Holland …. If you cooperate, before a year is out we will take a stunning revenge on England …. Only by an invasion can we succeed in this …. I have no desire to burden Holland but I need her ports. It is therefore necessary that you cooperate loyally. Otherwise I will be forced to turn you into a French Department (annex Holland). Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
I have told you already a hundred times: You are not a King and yet you have no idea how to be one …. All your difficulties and anxieties come from your own bad administration and because you have never paid any attention to my advice. I shall always regret having given you a kingdom where you have merely profited from the reputation of my name Compliments, Insults & Rebukes
I shall not continue to suffer a hostile Prince on my boundaries, especially one who is practically a Prussian, not to say an Englishman, and who sells his subjects, Leaders & Leadership ;Business, Commerce & Finance ;Military & Veterans
I was only helping your country enforce the Embargo Act. War & Peace
I will not hide from you my intention to unite Holland with France, both to complete my territory and as the deadliest blow I can inflict on England. Expansionism, Colonialism & Imperialism
In matters of government, justice means force as well as virtue. Justice & Injustice
In politics stupidity is not a handicap. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising ;Propaganda & Disinformation
It is my opinion that whatever is the custom of a nation, and is practiced by the first characters of that nation towards their chief, cannot degrade strangers who perform the same. States. Nations & Nationhood
It is only a step from the sublime to the ridiculous. Miscellaneous
Let China sleep for when she wakes, the world will tremble. Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
Maybe it would have been better if neither of us had been born. Miscellaneous
Money has no motherland; financiers are without patriotism and without decency; their sole object is gain. Compliments, Insults & Rebukes
My policy is victory. War & Peace ;Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake. War & Peace
New schools are being opened, and inspectors have been appointed to see that the instruction does not degenerate into vain and sterile examinations…there can be no doubt that French genius will produce works of distinction Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training
Of all our institutions public education is the most important. Everything depends on it, the present and the future. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training
One mediocre general is better than two good ones. Leaders & Leadership
Politics is fate. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
Schimmelpenninck is too virtuous for the century in which we live. Compliments, Insults & Rebukes
Soldiers, you are naked, unfed; the government owes you much but has given you nothing. The patience and courage that you have shown among these rocks are admirable; but it brings you no glory—not a glimmer falls upon you. I will lead you into the most fertile plains in the world. Rich provinces, great cities will be in your power; there you will find honor, glory and riches. Leaders & Leadership
Spaniards, after a long agony your nation is perishing. I have seen your ills and I shall remedy them. States. Nations & Nationhood
Talleyrand is a silk stocking filled with mud. Compliments, Insults & Rebukes
The advancement and perfection of mathematics are intimately connected with the prosperity of the State. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
The army is the true nobility of our country. Military & Veterans
The more my people work, the less vices they will have Work, Workers & The Labor Force
The Netherlands were no more than the alluvium formed by the principle rivers of my empire. Compliments, Insults & Rebukes
The surest way to remain poor is to be an honest man. Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
There are but two powers in the world, the sword and the mind. In the long run, the sword is always beaten by the mind. Power
To govern is to increase and spread morality, education, and happiness. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
Vices make very good patriots? Taxes
We have come in the name of the French Republic founded upon the principles of equality and liberty. Expansionism, Colonialism & Imperialism
When a government is dependent upon bankers for money, they and not the leaders of the government control the situation, since the hand that gives is above the hand that takes. Budgets & Budgeting
You may pretend to a civil independence, but the rest is a chimera. You are tied to me like a moon to a planet. I am not your enemy, but some force must be applied so that you follow in my step. States. Nations & Nationhood
Your government means to be paternal—it is only weak…. Love France, love my glory—that is the only manner in which a King of Holland can do service. Leaders & Leadership
A celebrated people lose dignity upon a closer view.
A Constitution should be short and obscure.
A leader is a dealer in hope. Hope ;Leaders & Leadership
A man cannot become an atheist merely by wishing it.
A man will fight harder for his interests than for his rights.
A revolution can be neither made nor stopped. The only thing that can be done is for one of several of its children to give it a direction by dint of victories.
A soldier will fight long and hard for a bit of colored ribbon. Citizenship & Patriotism
Ability is nothing without opportunity.
All religions have been made by men.
Ambition never is in a greater hurry than I; it merely keeps pace with circumstances and with my general way of thinking.
An army marches on its stomach. War & Peace
Courage is like love; it must have hope for nourishment. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex ;Hope
Death is nothing, but to live defeated and inglorious is to die daily. Death
Doctors will have more lives to answer for in the next world than even we generals. Health, Healthcare & Medicine
England is a nation of shopkeepers.
Forethought we may have, undoubtedly, but not foresight.
Four hostile newspapers are more to be feared than a thousand bayonets.
France has more need of me than I have need of France.
From the heights of these pyramids, forty centuries look down on us.
Glory is fleeting, but obscurity is forever. Fame
Great ambition is the passion of a great character. Those endowed with it may perform very good or very bad acts. All depends on the principles which direct them.
Hats off, gentlemen — if he were still alive we should not be here. Leaders & Leadership ;War & Peace
He who fears being conquered is sure of defeat.
He who knows how to flatter also knows how to slander. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
History is a set of lies agreed upon. History
I am sometimes a fox and sometimes a lion. The whole secret of government lies in knowing when to be the one or the other. Government
I am the successor, not of Louis XVI, but of Charlemagne.
I have only one counsel for you - be master.
I love power. But it is as an artist that I love it. I love it as a musician loves his violin, to draw out its sounds and chords and harmonies. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex ;Power ;Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
I made all my generals out of mud.
If I had to choose a religion, the sun as the universal giver of life would be my god. Life ;Nature ;Religion & God
If they want peace, nations should avoid the pin-pricks that precede cannon shots. War & Peace
If you want a thing done well, do it yourself.
Imagination rules the world.
Impossible is a word to be found only in the dictionary of fools.
In order to govern, the question is not to follow out a more or less valid theory but to build with whatever materials are at hand. The inevitable must be accepted and turned to advantage.
In politics... never retreat, never retract... never admit a mistake. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
It is my wish that my ashes may repose on the banks of the Seine, in the midst of the French people, whom I have loved so well.
It requires more courage to suffer than to die.
Let the path be open to talent.
Medicines are only fit for old people.
Men are more easily governed through their vices than through their virtues.
Men are moved by two levers only: fear and self interest.
Men take only their needs into consideration - never their abilities.
Music is the voice that tells us that the human race is greater than it knows. Music, Chants & Rapps
Nothing is more difficult, and therefore more precious, than to be able to decide.
One must change one's tactics every ten years if one wishes to maintain one's superiority.
One should never forbid what one lacks the power to prevent. Power
Power is my mistress. I have worked too hard at her conquest to allow anyone to take her away from me. Power
Public opinion is the thermometer a monarch should constantly consult.
Religion is excellent stuff for keeping common people quiet. Religion & God
Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich. Religion & God
Respect the burden. Respect
Riches do not consist in the possession of treasures, but in the use made of them.
Skepticism is a virtue in history as well as in philosophy. History
Soldiers generally win battles; generals get credit for them.
Take time to deliberate, but when the time for action has arrived, stop thinking and go in. Time
Ten people who speak make more noise than ten thousand who are silent.
The act of policing is, in order to punish less often, to punish more severely.
The battle of Austerlitz is the grandest of all I have fought.
The battlefield is a scene of constant chaos. The winner will be the one who controls that chaos, both his own and the enemies.
The best cure for the body is a quiet mind.
The best way to keep one's word is not to give it.
The extent of your consciousness is limited only by your ability to love and to embrace with your love the space around you, and all it contains. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
The first virtue in a soldier is endurance of fatigue; courage is only the second virtue.
The French complain of everything, and always.
The great proof of madness is the disproportion of one's designs to one's means.
The human race is governed by its imagination.
The infectiousness of crime is like that of the plague.
The people to fear are not those who disagree with you, but those who disagree with you and are too cowardly to let you know.
The strong man is the one who is able to intercept at will the communication between the senses and the mind.
The torment of precautions often exceeds the dangers to be avoided. It is sometimes better to abandon one's self to destiny.
The truest wisdom is a resolute determination.
There are only two forces in the world, the sword and the spirit. In the long run the sword will always be conquered by the spirit.
There are only two forces that unite men - fear and interest.
There is no such thing as accident; it is fate misnamed.
There is only one step from the sublime to the ridiculous.
To do all that one is able to do, is to be a man; to do all that one would like to do, is to be a god. Religion & God
Victory belongs to the most persevering.
War is the business of barbarians. Business, Commerce & Finance ;War & Peace
Water, air, and cleanness are the chief articles in my pharmacy. Health, Healthcare & Medicine
We must laugh at man to avoid crying for him.
What is history but a fable agreed upon? History
When small men attempt great enterprises, they always end by reducing them to the level of their mediocrity.
When soldiers have been baptized in the fire of a battle-field, they have all one rank in my eyes.
With audacity one can undertake anything, but not do everything.
Women are nothing but machines for producing children. Women
You must not fear death, my lads; defy him, and you drive him into the enemy's ranks. Death
You must not fight too often with one enemy, or you will teach him all your art of war. War & Peace ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle