An international scholarly online history journal on First and Second Empire subjects: articles, bibliographies, book reviews, in english and in french

Delve deeper into Napoleonic history here in our section on the history of the two empires. Alongside a section for those just starting, there are many articles, images with commentary, close-ups and special dossiers for the serious Napoleonic enthusiast.

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Texts and articles on the history of the First and Second Empires. Many more articles are available on the French side of the site, so dust of your dictionaries and take the plunge!

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The Poet and the Consul: a late-night conversation at Malmaison
LEMERCIER Népomucène Louis

Népomucène Louis Lemercier (1771-1840) was a French dramatic poet. He saw his first literary success –notably for the stage – in the last decade of the 18th century, and he moved in the same circles as Napoleon Bonaparte between 1795 and 1800 – one biographer even went so far as to suggest that it was Lemercier who had encouraged Josephine to marry the young general. Talleyrand described Lemercier as the best conversationalist in France. Lemercier was initially a supporter of the young consul, but disliking the creation of the consulship for life and Napoleon's abandoning of the Republic, the poet retired into academia during the Empire – he was an assiduous member of the Institut. Lemercier was to return to public life during the Restoration, highly critical of the Empire. He published his account of this remarkable conversation in 1823, as a historical note to his poem Moyse. 1 (English translation by P.H. with T.A.)


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