The Napoleonic Wars (1803–1815) were a series of wars between Napoleon's French Empire and opposing coalitions. As a continuation of the wars sparked by the French Revolution of 1789, they revolutionised European armies and played out on an unprecedented scale, mainly owing to the application of modern mass conscription. French power rose quickly as Napoleon's armies conquered much of Europe but collapsed rapidly after France's disastrous invasion of Russia in 1812. Napoleon's empire ultimately suffered complete military defeat resulting in the restoration of the Bourbon monarchy in France and the creation of the Concert of Europe.
War of the First CoalitionThe War of the First Coalition (1792–1797) was the first major effort of multiple European monarchies to contain Revolutionary France. France declared war on the Habsburg monarchy of Austria on 20 April 1792, and the Kingdom of Prussia joined the Austrian side a few weeks later. These powers initiated a series of invasions of France by land and sea, with Prussia and Austria attacking from the Austrian Netherlands and the Rhine, and Great Britain supporting revolts in provincial France and laying siege to Toulon. France suffered reverses (Battle of Neerwinden, 18 March 1793) and internal strife (Revolt in the Vendée), and responded with extreme measures: the Committee of Public Safety formed (6 April 1793) and the levée en masse drafted all potential soldiers aged 18 to 25 (August 1793). The new French armies counter-attacked, repelled the invaders, and moved beyond France. French arms established the Batavian Republic as a satellite state (May 1795) and gained the Prussian Rhineland by the first Treaty of Basel. With the Treaty of Campo Formio, the Holy Roman Empire ceded the Austrian Netherlands to France and Northern Italy was turned into several French "Sister Republics". Spain made a separate peace accord with France (second Treaty of Basel) and the French Directory carried out plans to conquer more of Germany and northern Italy (1795). North of the Alps, Archduke Charles of Austria redressed the situation in 1796, but Napoleon carried all before him against Sardinia and Austria in northern Italy (1796–1797) near the Po Valley, culminating in the peace of Leoben and the Treaty of Campo Formio (October 1797). The First Coalition collapsed, leaving only Britain in the field fighting against France.
War of the Second coalition
The War of the Second Coalition (1798–1802) was the second attempt by European monarchs, led by the Habsburg Monarchy of Austria and the Russian Empire, to contain or eliminate Revolutionary France. They formed a new alliance and attempted to roll back France's previous military conquests. Austria and Russia raised fresh armies for campaigns in Germany and Italy in 1799. In the summer of 1798, Napoleon Bonaparte led an expedition to Egypt. Meanwhile, during his absence from Europe, the outbreak of violence in Switzerland drew French support against the old Swiss Confederation. When revolutionaries overthrew the cantonal government in Bern, the French Army of the Alps invaded, ostensibly to support the Swiss Republicans. In northern Italy, Russian general Aleksandr Suvorov won a string of victories, driving the French under Moreau out of the Po Valley, forcing them back on the French Alps and the coast around Genoa. However, the Russian armies in the Helvetic Republic (Switzerland) were defeated by French commander André Masséna, and Suvorov eventually withdrew. Ultimately the Russians left the Coalition when Great Britain insisted on the right to search all vessels it stopped at sea. In Germany, Archduke Charles of Austria drove the French under Jean-Baptiste Jourdan back across the Rhine and won several victories in Switzerland. Jourdan was replaced by Massena, who then combined the Armies of the Danube and Helvetia.
Battle of Trafalgar
Reasons With the British Empires focus mostly on the Colonies, their expansion, and their Profitability was on a whole unprepared for the Franco-Spanish fleet sailing to take the Oceans from the British. The Fleet commanded by Admiral Nelson and his ship the HMS Victory and 13 other ships vs a combined Franco-Spanish fleet of just over 30 ships led the battle in very odd directions.
Order of Battle and beginnings
The Franco-Spanish fleets lined up as per the usual tactics of Naval warfare but Nelson ordered for one of the smaller frigates to be rigged as a sacrificial ship. It was set to blow by a skeliton crew of the ship and was to be the first ship in the lines against the enemy fleet. The ship, whose name is not known was directly directly into the French admirals flagship, the Resulting crash and explosion completely destroyed both ships and continued to set the French ship behind it on fire. Nelsons Fleet suddenly turned and fired blindly through the smoke and flame into the next three ships in the line scoring hits that were deemed to be guided by God. The Next three ships in Line suffered massive damage and one of the ships powder magazine's was hit causing yet another explosion putting in the first minutes of battle six ships out of commision. In the first 12 minutes of the battle the entire leading guard of the Coalition fleet had litterally been obliterated or incapacitated with the rest of their ships to look on. The fires on the remaining ships that survived the blasts had become too out of control forcing their abandonment.
Turn for the worseThe British fleet then scattered and used the increasingly low visibility and the British navies superior training to begin afflicting a conflict of attrition. However, one by one the ships n Nelson's fleet had been cornered with a few suiciding and ramming an enemy ship and igniting the powder magazines. The next few weeks were a game of cat and mouse. Admiral Nelson, and another first rate ship of the line had survived and were constantly harassed all the way back to Great Britain where the small local fleet managed to drive off the remaining 17 French and Spanish ships. The Battle was considered one of the most heroic holding actions in Naval history, and while a defeat Admiral Nelson was welcomed back with open arms for his attempt and his ability to cut the enemy fleet down to size.
French Invasion of the United Kingdom
Following the loss of the Battle of Trafalgar King George ordered for the preparation of the entire empire for possible French attack. However, the only predicted invasion was of the United Kingdom proper. With the British Navy rapidly losing ground due to its lack of ships in the immediate area the British Army prepared for a large scale coastal conflict. With many troops active and abroad in the colonies the UK only had about 80,000 troops on hand in the kingdom proper. With almost the remainder of its 200,000 troops in the colonies the British Empire was in dire straits. Men were recruited and militias were created and armed, and the crash course in training they received was nowhere near efficient. With the outlook becoming more bleak by the week, King George ordered that as many citizens of Ireland and Britain proper be evacuated to British colonies mostly America. The navy was pulled from combat duty and was tasked with keeping evacuation lanes open. By March nobles and lords and their families were being evacuated en masse with only those essential to the war able to stay. On March 13th the Invasion commenced and the French forces managed to secure much of the coast and its defenses. The French navy controlling all but the Navy evacuation area known as the Irish corridor. By this point thousands had managed to flee and ship production in order to get more people out was even high, even so the number of escapees constrained by the amount of people a ship could carry was well below 250,000.
The Invasion began just as dawn broke and about 200,000 French troops commenced the massive invasion of the United Kingdom. the generals of the Army managed to hold London and even more so managed to keep a road open to forcibly evacuate more people and the remainder of the high bornes such as the king and the Lords which stayed behind to lead their forces. The Admiralty which ordered the forced evacuation of King George managed to get him out via the Irish Corridor. Battles such as London's Last stand ending in a French Victory, as well as the taking of the British interior signalled the failure of many generals to coordinate and effectively fight the French. However with the King gone, and many people fleeing north to Scotland the Generals decided to set up a Defensive line in Scotland with the Remaining 60,000 British Troops led by the new but capable General George Clayworth