December 29, 2006 cameron

The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #15 – The Battle of Jena-Auerstedt

The twin battles of Jena and Auerstedt (older name: Auerstädt) were fought on October 14, 1806 on the plateau west of the river Saale in today’s Germany, between the forces of Napoleon I of France and Frederick William III of Prussia. The decisive defeat suffered by the Prussian army resulted in Prussia’s elimination from the anti-French coalition up until the liberation war of 1813.

Some links to topics discussed on this episode:

Battle of Jena-Auerstedt
The Confederation of the Rhine
and the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire
Queen Louise of Prussia
Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte

David has provided the following photos of objects from his collection which provide a pictorial dimension to this episode:

Queen Louise of Prussia

The Battle of Jena

Joseph Bonaparte, King of Naples

Tagged:

Comments (47)

  1. Joshua Parker

    Ohh now isn’t this a nice Christmas/New Year’s present. Thanks Cameron and David. Now I just gotta leave my slow dialup downloading all night 🙂

    Its a pity the Napoleon 101 forum doesn’t seem to be taking off.

  2. Awwww Josh, what a nice comment. It’s our pleasure. Sorry to hear you are still on dial-up! That’s a travesty. I agree that it’s a shame the Napoleon forum isn’t taking off more. Any ideas why?

  3. Josh, glad you liked our “present!” We certainly liked giving it. I also wish the forum would do something, but someone needs to get it started, I guess. Of course, one reason may be that the Napoleon Series Forum is so good! But ours is designed to give people a chance to talk about issues raised in our podcast, and is not really meant to compete with the NS Forum.

    The photos above, by the way, are of Queen Louisa of Prussia (19th century miniature, modern frame), the Battle of Jena (engraving probably from 1815 or so) and a German engraving of Napoleon’s brother Joseph as King of Naples and Sicily.

    Happy New Year to one and all!!

    David

  4. Joshua Parker

    I’ve always though Queen Louisa of Prussia would be a fascinating character to study although there doesn’t seem to be a terrible amount of information about her. Sort of like a 19th century Xena. Indeed she’d certainly be a essential addition to any historians work on women in power throughout history.

    About the forums Cameron I’ve noticed they’re all pretty quiet on the podcast network. Whilst I’m by no means familiar with your entire site I couldn’t find a simple link to the forums on the homepage, “http://www.thepodcastnetwork.com/”. If I were a first time visitor I would look for one there. As for the Napoleon podcast forum the only links to it I’m aware of are in the bottom of your news articles when you post a new podcast. You’ll probably find that many listeners are simply downloading the podcast and skimming the text in news entries. The fact that there doesn’t appear any obvious links the forums would cause difficulties for return visits unless I’d actually bookmarked the forum. Anyway perhaps I’m missing some links to the forums some where but that was my navigating experience.

  5. Yeah that’s a great point Joshua and you aren’t the first to make it! We’re planning on a big re-design of the TPN sites in Jan/Feb and inclusion of the forum link will be a major component. Thanks for rattling the cage!

  6. Dominique Contant

    Bonjour Cameron and David,
    Once again, a great show ! living and capturing interest.

    I wish 2007 to see the achievement of the project on the POW David talked about.

    Happy new year to all,
    Dominique

  7. Joshua Parker

    Great show as always. Can you post some of the hate mail up sometime Cameron? Hate mail is always great for a laugh. Just don’t include the author’s name or address of course 🙂

  8. Daevo

    From central Louisiana. Got an iPod for Xmas from my children and found the Napoleon podcast. Love it! Thank you. the format and banter between Mr Marcham and Mr Reilly is extremely intertaining and informative. PLEASE keep up the excellent work!

  9. cameron

    Joshua, thanks for the compliment about the show but I really don’t want to waste my time with the crazy hate mail. Besides, it is too offensive to David, calling him my “side-kick”, I can’t bear to put him through that again!!! 🙂

    Daevo, welcome to the show! So glad you found us and are enjoying it so far. Out of interest, how did you find the show?

  10. Hello, all,

    First, a very warm Happy New Year to one and all.

    Glad you all like the show. We do work hard at it, but I recall the statement by somone, “get a job doing something you really enjoy, and you’ll never work a day in your life.” That’s the way I feel about the podcasting and, for that matter, my writing.

    As to the hate mail, well, I’ve been called a lot of things in my life, but “Cameron’s sidekick” is the last straw!! 😉

    Finally, bonjour to my good friend Dominique. It is Dominique, of course, with whom I hope to complete the POW project, though we’ll see if it is possible to get it done this year.

    Best regards to one and all,

    David
    http://www.NapoleonicHistory.com

    PS If you have not yet gone to my website, please do. I’ll have good links and interesting Napoleonic news updated on a regular basis. And, of course, links to my books!

  11. I’ve finally got around to looking at your website David and it looks great.
    Absolutely delightful as is this series on Napoleon.
    You’ve kick started me into action and I’m well on the way to putting together a series on the wars which came a little before the napoleonic wars (Ok about a hundred years before) the Wars of the Spanish Succession. A fascinating time and, I feel, sows many of the seeds that lead us on to the troubles of the early 19th century. Balance of power is key and it’s the balance that has been disturbed by French expansionism. No level headed Briton would have contemplated just letting matters slide when there’s such a powerful neighbor on their doorstep.
    I’ve put together a list of a few of my favourite podcasts at http://umor.co.uk/historypodcasts.html and as you can see, you’re right there.

  12. Joshua Parker

    Oh dear Mr. Markham you plug your books harder than Dr. Phil does his 🙂

    Of course your books are good though and deserved of much plugging 🙂

  13. C Lui

    Hi Cameron and David,

    I’m a listener from California and I must say, what a great show! I’ve spent many an enjoyable hour listening to you two go on geekily about Napoleon I admit when I should’ve been doing my schoolwork, but it was time well-spent. I look forward to your next show, and am hoping that it indeed will see the bicentennial of Waterloo.

  14. Ub

    Dear David and Cameron,

    Again a great episode!!! and of course a wonderful present for the new year.
    I just wanted to ask is it possible to include in your show thing that happend “around” Napoleon, like his family life,his ministers.I think it is most important to include people like Fouche and Talleyrand into Napoleonic history,so that listeners could see the whole picture, and by the way these figures are really interesting to talk about.
    So if you’ll see that you have enough time to do so,it will make the episodes much more informative.
    Thanks and keep on doing a great job!!!

  15. tech

    Ub, you’re absolutely right. We never seem to have enough time! I think perhaps we should do a dedicated episode on some of the other major characters… we’ve already talked a little about Josephine but could do more. Then we should also do Fouche, Talleyrand, Alexander, etc.

  16. So when is the first episode of Caesar 101 being posted? 😉
    Keep up the good work guys, and I recon if you have a few more medicines each, you can make the 2 hour mark!
    Molly

  17. Gentlemen.
    I have just finished episode 14 as I lay in hospital after a cancer op and I must say, I’m extremely grateful to you 2 history nerds. Both of you have helped get me through a very traumatic and physically painful experience. Thankyou.

    I discovered your podcast a couple of months ago and I have enjoyed every minute and every piece of informtion. Prior to my op I would take you both into my gym and train for the duration of 1 or 2 casts, aches and pains cast aside by your banter and David’s emense knowledge of the subject. You may add ‘personal trainer’ to your C.Vs.

    I am a mature aged (60), BA student of History at UWA, Perth, Western Australia, taking honours next year, and I find the whole period of the 18c -19c fascinating. I read history texts between semesters, sometimes 2-3 simultaneously, and I would very much like to subscribe to further casts by either of you. Caesar and Alexander sounds interesting as I haven’t had much to do with the Classical History side of things.

    One small point, I’m afraid,. In episode 13 I noticed David’s, 5 Star General, gravel voice was a little softer and therefore a little more ‘listenable’ as I lay in the quiet confines of my hospital cell. Perhaps, in the next series, his microphone could be turned down a little.

    WHO DARES TO POST HATE MAIL??? I was born in Greenwhich, brought up among its Georgean- Victorian architecture and history and was taught at an English, Grammar School. I was fed all the pro British propoganda written over the period and believed it. But I was sufficiently open minded to form other opinions once I read the many tomes contradicting British History, as written by the British. Hate mailers- Never blindly believe what one or two people tell you; investigate widely and thoroughly; what angle is the author pushing?Once you have exhausted all the avenues of research, collated the information and sifted out the inconsistencies, then you may draw an informed opinion. Until then you are just blowing out your arse.
    Thankyou both once again for an amazingly interesting series.

  18. Cameron

    Wow Gareth, thanks for the email. I hope the op went well and you are on the road to a fast recovery. If it helps provide an incentive, David and I can deliberately stretch out the series even further to give you something to focus on? 🙂

    My apologies if David’s audio was too high in the last episode and I will endeavour to correct it on subsequent shows.

    all the best
    Cameron

  19. Thanks Cameron.
    David’s audio has been high for all but episode 13, but I managed to overcome that by making a noise in the gym or listening on the plane when I travel to Melbourne.

    I just realised that you’re also on flickr. I’ve added you to my contacts, if you don’t mind?
    Are you sure you can stretch the series a little further? David’s pretty tight with his scheduling.

    I’m reading 2 texts on the French Revolution at the moment, inspired by your cast I’ll add.
    I’ve already read on Nelson and Trafalgar ( as a Greenwich boy I couldn’t fail to be interested in Nelson as I used to live 10 mins from the Maritime Museum where his artifacts are displayed ) and several books on the Georges ( 3 & 4 ). Perhaps, as Ub and tech suggest, an extension to include the other players in the whole game would be fascinating. Josef Fouche and Tallyrand deserve a couple of casts each and when you get into the Austrian, Russian, Prussian, English players you’dll have a field day. It would tie everything in and give us an even clearer perspective on European history at the time.
    By the way, if you want any research done let me know. My wife will kill you but she’ll be happy knowing I’m enjoying myself ; ))

  20. JASON MORRELL

    Just wanted to tell you guys that this entire series has been extremly informative to me. Your podcast has changed my opinion of Napoleon completly. I never relized the amount of oposition he recieved from the other countrys of Europe and how they were the agressors (especially Britian lol) and Nepoleon was defending France with alot of his actions. One last thing. It would be great if you took on the subject of Julius Ceasar after your done with Napoleon I thought I heard David mention him couple of times. That would be a great podcast series. sorry for any spelling or grammar errors.

  21. Cameron

    Jason, I’d love to do Caesar after Napoleon! Or Alexander. I’m a big fan of both but quite honestly I know hardly anything about them in comparison to Napoleon. I know David is quite knowledgeable about them though, especially Caesar. Thanks for listening to the show and for the comment!

  22. Larry Bertoia

    I sent the note below to Cameron’s email at the network, before I actually used my head and clicked on the link to this page, my apologies Cameron.

    I have been an avid fan of Napoleon and his times for over 20 years, reading extensively, playing games, painting miniatures but rarely have I had the opportunity to just sit and share in the enjoyment of others who regard Napoleon and the Napoleonic era as I do. I come late to the series and have listened to the first 10 episodes. I can’t thank you enough for the 10+ hours of enjoyment I have received from David and yourself sharing your knowledge and love of the subject. I am looking forward to the 5 episodes I have sitting on my ipod and any future episodes you produce ( as I notice that # 15 is only up to Jena/Auerstaedt). I listen primarily in my car as I have a long commute between the city where I live and the city in which I work and now I actually look forward to that 5 hour drive each way each week! A truly inspired idea and a superb execution.

    Keep up the excellent work, I will definitely be listening for as long as it takes. In fact I will actually be quite sad to see it end for both reasons, the end of Napoleon and of course the end of the series.

    Cheers to you both and Vive l’ Empereur.

    With deepest thanks,

  23. Cameron

    Thanks very much for your comments Larry! Comments like that make my day. Doing the show is a thrill for me. Being able to talk to someone with David’s experience and knowledge about my favourite subject is a genuine honour! And then being able to share those conversations with
    other people interested in Napoleon is an additional privilege.

    Thanks for listening and I hope you enjoy the rest of the series.

  24. Hello, friends and listeners,

    Sorry its taken me awhile to respond, but I see Cameron has not allowed you to feel ignored.

    First, let me wish Gareth a full and speedy recovery. If all I’ve done with this series is make your recovery a bit easier it will have been more than worth it.

    Larry, I am glad you find our effort a help for your long drive. I do two hours each day, so I understand how it goes (though strangely, I often prefer quiet). But I fear that listening to me might put you to sleep, harmless enough in most cases, but not when driving. So be careful!;-)

    Several of you mention the possibility of another series, this one on Caesar. Well, on the perhaps misguided assumption that we actually ever finish the Napoleon 101 series, I have every desire to do one on Caesar. Speaking of which, if you get HBO I strongly recommend the new season of Rome. If you are seeing it for the first time, you should watch the first season on DVD. Its really quite good.

    Jason, glad that we’ve helped set the record straight on the real story of Napoleon. Sometimes I am accused of being too positive about the man, but there are plenty of folks out there who are happy to trash him at every opportunity, so perhaps I bring some much-needed balance to our understanding of this important person. The fact is, I think he made some mistakes, and he doubtless let his success go to his head a bit, but that hardly makes him unique in history! Taken overall (which is the only way to take historical figures), he was a very positive force in history. And love him or hate him, it is hard to find anyone more interesting (hmmm…Caesar, perhaps?)

    Joshua suggests that I do a more than adequate job promoting my books. Me?? I’m shocked at the suggestion!!;-) But here is a point to consider. If Napoleon for Dummies sells well, they are likely to continue the biography series and, I believe, have me do Caesar for Dummies. So, sure, I’d like the money of increased sales, but I also want this very popular series (For Dummies) to continue promoting biographies of important people. If every one of our listeners bought only one copy, all that would probably happen. Two copies (one as a gift to a friend or a library) and it would almost certainly happen. Oddly enough, sales of my book could help determine the future of the series.

    Anyway, for me, it was great fun to write it, and I love knowing it is now in French and for sale in France. When I started my “Napoleonic Career,” I would never have dreamed of such a thing. Nor would I have dreamed of doing something like this podcast, which reaches so many nice people all over the globe. Like several of you have commented, I really don’t want the podcast to end! (And, sometimes it seems that it won’!)

    As always, my very best to you all,

    David

  25. Jon

    Hey guys i just felt that i needed to leave some sort of post, as you guys often request it, and i feel it is the least i can do as an avid listener to the podcast. My education on Napoleon prior to the podcast consisted of what i learned reading and seeing The Count of Monte Cristo, which amounted to nothing. When I stumbled upon the Napoleon podcast i was immediately intrigued and felt i needed to learn more about the legend of Napoleon. The format of the show has made learning this new information both enjoyable and simple. I listen to it while driving around and when walking around my college campus. I am from Portland, Oregon and go the the University of Oregon. That last piece of info was for David because he is always askingin the podcast to leave your location. Once again, you guys are doing a great job and I dont think there are two personalities out there who could host the show as well as you two. Keep up the good work

  26. Cameron

    Thanks Jon! I love hearing stories like that. I seriously consider it an privilege to be able to share the Napoleon story with so many people. For 20 years I sat around reading these stories and thinking “wow! am I the only person who never knew this stuff?”. And being able to do it in conjunction with His Imperial Majesty JDM is truly
    an honour.

  27. Chris Sloan

    Hi again guys,

    Once again, a fantastic show, and a great series in general. I like the idea of extending the series, too; if this is Napoleon 101, what about a 201 or 301 series that goes into a little more depth on particular topics? I’d love to see something on the members of the Marshalate, for example. The Marshal most interesting to me was Berthier, but I’ve yet to find anything beyond a fairly brief biography of him…I’ve often thought of trying my hand at a biography myself, actually. Any thoughts on where I might find more in-depth material on ol’ Louis-Alexandre?

    Kind regards,
    Chris Sloan
    Toronto, Canada

  28. Jon,

    You are in Portland? I’m in Olympia, WA, so we’re pretty close. Some friends and I are planning to make another trip to your museum to see the Egyptian exhibition, with lunch at the Governor Hotel, as usual. Send me an email if you’d like to join us. It is always great to meet new Bonapartists! 🙂

    And Chris, I’ll see if we can’t do a show on the Marshalate. Here is a book related to Berthier: Berthier, General Louis Alexandre. The French Expedition into Syria, Comprising General Buonaparte’s Letters, With Gen. Berthier’s Narrative and Sir Wm. Sidney Smith’s Letters from the London Gazette. London: Cooper and Wilson for J. Ridgway, 1799. Facsimile edition, Tyne and Wear: Worley, 1990.

    And a biography of Berthier: Watson, S. By Command of the Emperor: A Life of Marshal Berthier. Cambridge: Ken Trotman, 1988. Reprint of the 1957 edition.

    These should help

    David

  29. Christopher from Perth, Australia

    Gareth,

    Could you please tell us what it is you found about your reading of Nelson that was propaganda? What other propaganda were you fed by your English education?

    Furthermore, what is it that Perfidious Albion denied the world that could have made Perth a better place to live in circa 2007?

  30. Ian from Brisbane in OZ

    Hey Lads

    I’ve been an avid listner since I got my new imac and broardband connection that also inspired me to get an iPod not for listning to music which I’ve always seen as background noise to my life but to listen to this wonderful new development called Podcasts. I did a long trip to Victoria from Queensland and back about 3000k’s and found the distance flew as I learnt and laughted to new things that I’d burnt onto cd’s so I got an iPod, now I can listen to you and others as I work. Soooo much better than music. But I’m learning so much also, I agree with Cameron growing up in a Commonwealth country where the victor writes the history I’ve always thought of Nepoleon as a despot akin to Hitler and now I realise that this is not as it is. As my Daughter has recently found out after returning from a trip to Paris there must be many good things about the man if the French love him so much. I love the podcasts and the long winded ramblings are a wonderful expression of your passion for the subject so don’t hold back, afterall if you go on too much we can always go ahead if we choose (never done that though). Fight the good fight and let the passion flow after all that is what life is about.

    Regards Ian

  31. Simon Deane

    Hi Guys,

    Just wanted to say how much I am enjoying the shows I downloaded (via iTunes website) the first 15 episodes and listened to them all in one week! I have been travelling around the UK working, and now look forward driving so I can continue with what is a gripping show.

    I live in Somerset England near Weston-super-Mare, and while listening to the show was thinking about the impact Napolean had on Europe, but also on my part of the world where I live and thought that it probably wasn’t impacted by Napolean at all , as its a rural coastel area in the south west of England (read Idaho David for reference). later I was talking with another local who corrected me and reminded me that we have an old Napoleonic fort (coastel defence) at the end of a spit of land called Brean Down and also there is a small Island opposite us that sits in the Bristol Channel that also has a Old Fort/ Gun enplacement that has the cannos still lying near by. I guess to defend the Bristol channel from invasion

    Then I realised that the coast of Britain is riddled with these types of forts as the fear must have gripped the UK about Naploeans various invasion plans.

    I also believe I have seen a BBC documentary some years ago about these Naploleonic defences around Britain that details an absolute massive structure near Dover, I wonder if David has visited? I imagine for the UK it was similar to the cold war/Cuba crisis of its era.

    I also realised that I have several Napleonic Coins in a collection I recently inherited, so from thinking his imprint was a feint one I realised his shadow is a long one and I have local evidence on my doorstep and in my possessions to prove it!

    Anyway keep up the good work, I love the “banter” as we say in the UK, and the relaxed style, its as if I have stumbled into an old pub and am overhearing a chat from two old friends. (The pub would probably be called the Nelson Arms or Duke of Wellington by the way which is another modern reference I was reminded of).

    Best Regards
    Simon

  32. Stan Goldstein

    I have just finished listening to Episode 13. I must congratulate you two, especially Mr. Markham who has a marvelous way of conveying not only the facts but the surrounding situations. However, I was struck and saddened by Cameron’s suggestion that the Jews were responsible for promoting the Napoleonic wars. First he brings up the “Jewish moneylenders” Then he refers to the Rothchilds.
    I am no expert on the history of the period but I know a Mel Gibson when I hear one.
    Markham, bless him, tried to diplomatically soften the blow. Come on Cameron, as David and any educated person knows, when it comes to war profiteering there are plenty of Halliburtons around.What is it about Jews that bothers you. If the Rothchilds and the other Jews were the exclusive moneylenders in that period, I could understand your comments. You really ruined a delightful afternoon of listening to the podcast.

  33. Cameron

    Stan, I have never been accused of anti-Semitism before. I don’t recall exactly what I said in the show about “Jewish moneylenders” but I was only passing on a story I read about how a group of bankers successfully speculated on the outcome of the Napoleonic wars. It doesn’t matter at all to me what their religious or genetic heritage was. It’s the story of bankers successfully profiteering from the war that I’m interested in, mostly because I have a suspicion that many current wars are also driven by a similar profit motive.

    In this case, the story in Wikipedia is:

    The basis for the Rothschild fortune was laid during the latter stages of the Napoleonic Wars. From 1813 to 1815, the Rothschild family was instrumental in the financing of the British war effort, handling the shipment of bullion to the Duke of Wellington’s army in Portugal and Spain, as well as arranging the payment of British financial subsidies to their Continental allies. Through the commissions earned on these transactions, the Rothschild fortune grew enormously.

    In the early 19th century Rothschild set up a Europe-wide network of messengers and carrier pigeon stations, gathering information that could affect his investments. He soon garnered a reputation for being first with the news.

    According to popular legend, when the Battle of Waterloo was being fought in June 1815, other speculators watched Rothschild’s stocks in an attempt to guess who would win. Shortly after the battle ended, and long before anyone else knew who was the victor, he began selling stocks. Everyone assumed this meant Napoleon had won and Europe was lost. Panic selling ensued. When prices crashed, Rothschild bought everything in sight and made a huge profit.

    So I believe I was accurate if I did in fact refer to them as “Jewish moneylenders”. I don’t think being accurate makes me an anti-Semite.

  34. Stan Goldstein

    Cameron
    Your Wikipedia Rothchild attribution does not mention the word Jewish. You are the one who used the term” Jewish moneylenders”. Of course it is accurate; The Rothchilds are Jews and they are moneylenders. In the 16th centrury Jews in most parts of Europe were still barred from most other professions. “Jewish Moneylenders” is a standard anti-Semitic rhetoric. The implication is that only benighted Jews are interested in making money.
    As your co-national Mel Gibson famously ranted, “Jews are behind all wars.” It certainly sounds anti-Semitic to me.
    I have just seen a production of “The Merchant of Venice.” Imagine if Shylock’s name were Cameron. The pound of flesh theme would still be revolting, but it sure takes on added horror because Shylock is a “Jewish Moneylender.”

  35. Cameron

    Actually Stan I just went back and listened to the show again and my statement was that the British “were borrowing money from very very old jewish banking families like the rothschilds” to fund the wars.

    Antisemitism is discrimination, hostility or prejudice directed at Jewish persons as a religious, racial, or ethnic group.

    Merely stating that a certain banking family was Jewish can hardly be interpreted as Anti-Semitic by a reasonable person.

    I think I originally read this story in “The Secret War Against The Jews” by John Loftus and Mark Aarons, a book which details how the Jews in Europe were betrayed by the Western powers during WWII – hardly an anti-Semitic book.

    So – trust me when I tell you that my statement was not intended to be anti-semitic. Mel Gibson may be an Aussie and may be anti-semitic, but he’s also belongs to a weird-ass extremist Catholic sect. I’m an atheist and I don’t think you’ll find many anti-Semitic atheists. I think all religions are equally absurd.

  36. Stan Goldstein

    Cameron
    Explanation accepted. You are a good guy and the Napoleon podcasts are terrific.

  37. Doug Maag

    Outstanding presentation, guys! I’ve been listening to the Napoleon 101 series for about a week and am up to episode # 11 (lot of time in the garden this weekend). Responding to your frequent requests for feedback: (1) regarding your concerns that you occasionally run too long — I have not once felt that you’ve overdone a topic; (2) I recommend turning off your telephone ringers when you’re podcasting (yes, we know which one of you is the guilty party); (3) use of a mute button might help reduce distracting coughs, etc.; (4) your personal views on some inflammatory current political issues creep in occasionally and I worry that it might detract from your wonderful content; (5) some geographic/demographic info about me – I’m 50ish and from Pennsylvania. Thanks for all your work – I can’t wait to listen to more!

  38. Cameron

    Thanks Doug! I do try to edit out any large distractions but I sometimes miss them. We’ve discussed the inclusion of the comparative political comments and decided they are valid, those that don’t learn from history, etc. If it turns some people off the show, so be it. This is, after all, about having a conversation. David and I offer our opinions and, as you’ll see on the site, people feel VERY free to argue with us. 🙂

  39. Eric Thorn

    “Merely stating that a certain banking family was Jewish can hardly be interpreted as Anti-Semitic by a reasonable person.”

    I currently reside in Korea, and it’s amazing how many public speakers find it necessary to talk about ‘Jewish bankers’, and it has previously led me to wonder what it is about Jewish money that is different than other people’s money. I think that’s why someone above took notice of your mention, and in fact the same statement had stood out starkly to me… one wonders why someone would bother to mention the ethnicity/religion of lenders. Would someone say “white bankers”? A bit odd, don’t you think? I see no reason to consider such a person as being prejudiced, but I think it might say something of our unconsciousness that such a term creeps into discourse.

    I was not quite as bothered as Stan and it did not ruin episode 13- in fact all of the podcasts are highly informative. I particularly like falling asleep to them, which means I usually have to listen to them again the next morning to review what I missed (don’t take offense, it’s just a good quiet show without the sort of loud noises that would wake someone up)

  40. Cameron

    Hi Eric! You make a good point and I’ve spent some time thinking about it. I’ve had a couple of terrific chats with the Israeli contingent here at the Napoleonic Congress in Ajaccio over the last few days and we’ve discussed the roots of antisemitism for hours. If I’d said they were German bankers or British bankers or even Catholic bankers, would that be racist or discriminatory?

  41. Joel Bridge

    I do fine quite inronic he does best out of all the marshals of dying a king and his family still rules to day.

  42. Robert Huffman

    I really enjoy your podcast. I just recently got turned on to it. I would however like more discussion about military history and not just politics of the 19th century. For example, Nap. is known for his artillery prowess and changing outcomes of battles and history because of it. Can we discuss that? I digress; I remember one of the hosts once saying something like, “people have misconceptions of Napoleon and think he was come crazy warmongering Hitler type” (I am paraphrasing here…) but I do think like most politics, and the men who lead counties/empires, it’s always a double-edged sword of a topic (no pun intended). I have been studying Napoleon and that time of military history for most of my life and it seems like Nap. was a fairly good ruler, but in his attempt to make the world a better place he was corrupted by power (like so many leaders in history). Did the European rulers cling to the “royal-blood-right-to-rule”, sure, (“Absolute power corrupts absolutely” (John Emerich)) but none of us are immune to this human trend. What some might be eluding to, is how the hosts seem to display Nap. in godlike status as if to say “everything he did was justified or great”. However, did Nap. make many good decisions? …absolutely. Did Nap. start out trying to help people of the Western world? Sure. But it still places him in the pantheon of leaders who were corrupted by power and thus placing him under the microscope of extreme criticisms and on par with his contemporaries. In some regard this makes him no better than the royal leaders of Europe of the 19th century, such as the Habsburg family. OVERALL, I LOVE THE SHOW! WELL DONE!

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