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4. Napoleon: The Myth

Dan Snow's History Hit

23-11-2023 • 39 mins

Napoleon has become more than a man. His name is a concept, a way of being, a psychological term- the 'Napoleon' complex. Napoleon began working on his legacy during his exile on St Helena in the last years of his life, his journal- memoir 'The Memorial of Saint Helena' was Napoleon's own personal and political testament and served as the founding text of the cult of Napoleon and the ideology of Bonapartism that grew after his death in 1821.


In the final episode of the series, Dan is joined by historian and biographer Lord Andrew Roberts to unpack the mythology of Napoleon. They delve into his final days, his lifetime achievements and failures and the commentary he gave throughout; the letters he wrote to rulers and lovers, the fiction he wrote, the political and military treaties he created and they try to answer the question- was he really a great man?


Produced by Mariana Des Forges, Freddy Chick and edited by Dougal Patmore.


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