First French Empire facts for kids
Chant du Départ
"Song of the Departure"
The First French Empire at its greatest extent in 1812.
|•||Lower house||Corps législatif|
|Historical era||Napoleonic Wars|
|•||Constitution adopted||18 May 1804|
|•||Coronation of Napoleon I||2 December 1804|
|•||Treaty of Tilsit||7 July 1807|
|•||Invasion of Russia||24 June 1812|
|•||Treaty of Fontainebleau||11 April 1814|
|•||Hundred Days||20 March – 7 July 1815|
|•||1812||2,100,000 km2 (810,000 sq mi)|
|Density||21/km2 (54/sq mi)|
|Today part of|| Andorra
The First French Empire, also known as the Greater French Empire or Napoleonic Empire, was the empire of Napoleon I of France. It was the main power of most of continental Europe during the early 19th century.
Napoleon became Emperor of the French on 18 May 1804. He was crowned Emperor on 2 December 1804. This ended the time of the French Consulate. He won early military victories in the War of the Third Coalition against Austria, Prussia, Russia, Portugal, and allied nations. The Treaty of Tilsit in July 1807 ended two years of bloodshed on the European continent.
The next wars, known as the Napoleonic Wars, grew France over much of Western Europe and into Poland. At its biggest in 1812, the French Empire had 130 départements, ruled over 44 million people, and had a large military in Germany, Italy, Spain, and the Duchy of Warsaw. The introduction of the Napoleonic Code through the continent increased legal equality, made jury systems, and legalized divorce. Napoleon placed relatives on the thrones of several European countries. He gave many noble titles, most of which went away after the empire fell.
Napoleon abdicated in 11 April 1814. The Empire was briefly brought back during the Hundred Days period in 1815 until Napoleon's defeat at the Battle of Waterloo. It was followed by the monarchy of the House of Bourbon. The House Bourbon succeeded the First French Empire.
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