Napoleon Bonaparte

Essay by garylittHigh School, 11th gradeA, June 2005

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Napoleon Bonaparte was born on August 15, 1769, on the island of Corsica, a colony of France. Many hail Napoleon as one of the greatest men of all time. He was emperor of the French who consolidated and institutionalized many reforms of the French Revolution. The French Revolution, from 1789 to 1799, changed the political, economic, and social structure of France forever. France changed from an absolute monarchy to a constitutional monarchy, and finally to a republic. Napoleon was one of the greatest military commanders of all time. But, even though how great Napoleon was, something about how Napoleon governed France still floats among people's minds. Was Napoleon Bonaparte a hero or a villain? This is one of the major controversies surrounding Napoleon. This issue is important, because many people question if Napoleon did more for France or was rather a self-centered individual. Many believe that Napoleon was a tyrant, because his principles defeated the purpose of the ideals of the French Revolution, basically that Napoleon abused his power and was only concentrated on fulfilling selfish dreams.

I believe that Napoleon was one of the greatest leaders that France had ever had and was a hero in the French society. Napoleon was a hero in France and also in most of Europe. Napoleon's heroic efforts include his remarkable military accomplishments, his ability to promote and advance the wide-ranging social, economic, and cultural changes that arose from the French revolution, and his domestic policy that still affects French institutions today.

Napoleon's domestic policy was one of his greatest legacies to France. This policy provided the stability in France necessary to consolidate the revolution begun in 1789. For example, Napoleon's Bank of France and tax reform stabilized the French economy. This bank issued government securities and extended low interest loans to promote...