Napoleon's Russian Campaign: recommendations
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Edward Tufte has justly praised Charles Joseph Minard's illustration as the greatest infographic ever created. Recent research has shown that Russian losses have been equally severe, so that one has to mentally add the huge Russian suffering to the chart.
In English, Dominic Lieven's pro-Russian Russia against Napoleon : the battle for Europe, 1807 to 1814 is probably the best work on the market. A good read is Adam Zamoyski's 1812: Napoleon's Fatal March on Moscow, adding the betrayed Polish perspective.
Christopher Duffy's two classic books are wonderful red meat accounts Borodino and the War of 1812 and Austerlitz 1805. The Russians already campaigned earlier in Europe: Eagles Over The Alps: Suvorov In Italy and Switzerland, 1799.
There are also an Osprey campaign booklet and F. G. Hourtoulle's badly translated Borodino, la Moskowa : la bataille des redoutes about the battle. In only a few pages, they can't really do justice to a battle of 300.000 people (5 times the Super Bowl stadium visitors).
1812 was a truly international campaign with many regional accounts, such as, for me as a Swiss, the famous stand of the red-clothed Swiss regiments at the Beresina, pushing back 23 Russian charges, while the brave French engineers built and kept up the bridges over the icy river (certain death for the engineers, in contrast to the stupid Hollywood representation of ice, cold and water in The Revenant). Or the various German contingents or even the Austrian sideshow at the southern flank.
Thank you for the detailed post. It gives me a place to start.
It leans heavily on the memoirs of Joseph Abbeel (°1786 - +1866) a Flemish soldier who was drafted into Napoleon's army in 1806.
He followed the Emperor throughout Europe and took part in the 1812 campaign in Russia.
Abbeel was one of the few who survived and put the story down in his memoirs.