Appetite for war: what did napoleon and his men eat in March?

During the 200th anniversary of the battle of Waterloo, napoleon Bonaparte’s most famous statement on food and war – “an army marching in the stomach” – was worth remembering.

Except he had no record. As Marie Antoinette did not record, “let them eat the cake.”

If he says so, these words are as hollow as the stomach of his soldiers. Although napoleon was one of the greatest military commanders of all time, he was unexpectedly negligent in feeding his army.

He ordered enough for GrandeArmee: “soup, boiled beef, baked union and some vegetables, no dessert.” But bad roads and bad weather often prevent the supply of vehicles from reaching the camp in time.

In Italy during the battle, 27, napoleon defeated a greater Austrian army and its Allies, to seize his name, he only plundered from land or plundered the village near – this was a common military action.

Even in poor countries like Poland, the conditions are difficult, but they still have a sense of humor. In his memoirs, the French soldier learned what he was called: Kleba? NieMa. “Meaning,” bread? “One day napoleon was walking through a column of infantry, and a hungry soldier shouted,” father, clabba. “Nie ma,” he retorted, “the whole pillar burst into laughter,” wyre wrote. “there was no further request.” (as some commentators have pointed out, Wairy’s polish and polish spelling may have been closed.)

But the suffering of napoleon’s army in the most fervent and coldest movements in Egypt and Russia was not a big joke.

In napoleon’s “road to power”, historian Philip Dwyer wrote that the Egyptian failure of 1798 was so swift and secret that it did not even have time to publish the drinking water. As a result, 55,000 troops had to endure three days of marching from Alexandria to Cairo, wearing thick European uniforms, burning sand and carrying heavy armor. They think they can forage like italians, but many throw away hard biscuits. Scores die from heat and thirst, while others are angry because of hunger, thirst, sandstorms, and bedouin attacks. They just fire a bullet through their brain. When the army reached the Nile, there was water and food, but, anger and pain, these men rampaged through the slaughter and robbery.

Despite this painful tirade, napoleon embarked on a more brutal 10-day March from Cairo to Syria in the second year. Again, there is not enough food. According to one sergeant, the water was brought back to the camel’s back, “hot, unpleasant, dirty, like water from a cobbler’s bathtub.” The soldiers began to commit suicide. A stampede in a lonely well killed 30 people. The desperate man dug up the sorrel, ate it and developed dysentery.

Nothing. In Syria, and the plague waiting for them, in the clay (now in Israel) small stubborn bastion, an alliance of Turkish and English let napoleon defeat for the first time, forcing him to retreat.

Equally bizarre is the Russian movement of 1812. The elimination of hunger in the majestic columns of the army was not getting colder by cossacks. Absolutely no food supply and the temperature of 20 degrees below zero, the greedy people ate horse meat flavored with gunpowder, often in order to fight down its liver, sometimes even before determining whether animals death. Through this movement, flocks of vultures are being eaten on roads and in the corpses of soldiers on the battlefield.

Vultures are not the only ones who eat well.

The late French historian Andre kass lott on napoleon wrote, by the famine, napoleon every day to continue his “white bread, have, beef or mutton, and his favorite beans and lentils rice”. But Wairy, the valet, claimed that his cheerful master had not been given adequate rations and ran in his officer, uneasily, like an ordinary soldier.

Napoleon, of course, was a cold eater (though he was picky about bread). He often did not eat, and only ate when he was hungry – usually a roast chicken, which he seemed to like. In the kitchen of Paris’s du lorie palace, the chicken is constantly roasting to suit his unstable hunger. When he was on Christmas Eve in Cairo to investigate the isthmus of suez, his only stipulation was to wrap three roast chicken in paper.

His soldiers were impatient with the impatient dinner rituals, “without a decent diet, always like to put their fingers on a fork or spoon,” his agent wrote. He did not drink champagne for the fine wines, and drank the diluted Chambertin with full satisfaction. At the camp in boulne, he asked a marshal on the table what he thought of the wines he served. The marshal replied, “all right,” the emperor and the other guests laughed.

Only after the defeat at Waterloo did napoleon become obsessed with mealtimes when he was permanently deprived of power. On st Helena, as a British prisoner, he was delivered to dinner every night by a uniformed butler, who declared: “your majesty has served.” Because infantry in rare porcelain and silver plate, soup, main course, roast meat, side dishes and candy, wearing formal uniform napoleon – a small group of officers and their wives wear dress – the role of the emperor, his role is no longer.

The man ate breakfast in eight minutes, and after a meal at twelve, what happened. He usually ate his breakfast alone, but on the rainy morning of June 18, 1815, he called a breakfast meeting called “his breakfast.

As the duke of Wellington waited outside the village of Waterloo, napoleon summoned his generals in present-day Belgium, where he spent a sleepless night farmhouse. Wellington, with his trademark bravado, told them it was “a poor general”. The English are poor soldiers. His officer was unconvinced. But the emperor assured them that lunch would be over.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here