The Vegas Sessions – Part One

On January 12, Cam, David, and Ray Harris, Cam’s co-host from the Life Of Caesar podcast, sat down in front of a live audience in Las Vegas for 70 minutes to discuss Napoleon, Caesar and Alexander.

The is the video of that session is now available for a measly $9 (US). Register for access here.

Once you’ve registered for access, you will be able to stream it from this site or download it to watch it on your phone, tablet, PC or TV. It’s a ~700 MB download.

Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #60 – Andrew Roberts, Napoleon The Great

After a break of 3.5 years, WE’RE BACK, BABY!

Sir J. David Markham – yes, he’s an actual KNIGHT now (see photo below) –  and Cameron Reilly are back with a brand new episode. And what brought the show out of retirement, we hear you ask?

The wonderful new 800-page biography by Andrew Roberts “Napoleon The Great”, we reply.


Andrew joined us from NYC to explain how he manages to both be British *and* a fan of Napoleon; why Napoleon was a funny dude who cracked jokes even while on the battlefield; why Napoleon wasn’t the evil warmonger he’s often portrayed as by the British; why his marriage to Josephine wasn’t Romeo & Juliette; and what his biggest mistake was.

Andrew’s book has recently been awarded the Grand Prix prize by the Fondation Napoleon and as of this Saturday will be listed in the NY Times bestseller lists (which, as you can probably guess, doesn’t happen with Napoleonic books very often).

If you want to skip the preamble between David and Cameron and get straight to the interview, it starts about 20 minutes in.

Sir J. David Markham

Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #59 – Napoleon @ The NGV

Hey folks!

It’s been nearly 18 months since the last podcast! Can you believe it!?

This is a special episode to celebrate and promote a special Napoleonic event that is currently happening in Melbourne – Napoleon: Revolution to Empire.

I had the chance today to chat with Sophie Matthiesson, one of the curators at the National Gallery of Victoria. We spoke about how the exhibition came to be, a bit about some of the pieces on display (such as the wonderful “Napoleon Crossing The Alps” by David) and what she hopes people who attend the exhibition will learn about Napoleon.

I highly recommend attending the exhibition if you can and, if you can’t, at least check out the NGV website to read up on the exhibition.

The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #58 – Wolfe Tone & The Irish Rebellions 1796-98

Welcome back!

I know, I know, it’s been 8 months since our last podcast. Sorry folks.

On this episode, our special guest is again Nicholas Stark, a 20-year-old wunderkind who David and I first met in Paris back in 2008, and who is studying at West Chester University in Philadelphia and a Fellow of the International Napoleonic Society.

Today Nicholas regales us with the story of Wolfe Tone, a leading figure in the United Irishmen Irish independence movement and who is regarded as the father of Irish republicanism.

Although Napoleon doesn’t feature greatly in this story, as most of it takes place while his career was just beginning, it is a tremendous tale of the French Revolution, the Directory and the Irish independence movement and it leads to some wondrous “what if” scenarios.

What if the French has assisted the Irish in their rebellion?

What impact would a English defeat to the French and Irish in 1796 have had on the rest of the Revolutionary Wars?

Could England have survived a two-front war with one of those on it’s own doorstep?

Nick adds:

The total Irish casualties in 1798 were 20,000 (more than Terror victims in French Rev except for Vendée), plus I want to add an acknowledgment of Cécile Déjardin and Stephen Dunford, who both have helped me with my research.

Music for this show: Sibina McCague and Padraig McGovern Moran’s Hornpipe*Byrnes Hornpipe), Paidin O Raifeartaigh

The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #57 – Haiti Pt 3

And once again we are fortunate to have Nicholas Stark back on the show to finish our series on Napoleon and Haiti.

Today we focus on the claims that Napoleon directly ordered atrocities to be committed in Haiti.

Did Napoleon, as Claude Ribbe claims, invent the gas chamber? (We find no evidence for that.)

Did the French troops in Haiti under Generals Leclerc and Rochambeau commit terrible atrocities against the Haitians?

Did the Haitians under Loverture commit atrocities?

I read from Napoleon’s orders to Leclerc and quote a poem from Wordsworth.

And, most importantly, is it true that Rochambeau invented Rock-Paper-Scissors?

The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #56 – Nick Stark on Haiti (Part Two)

We’re back with Nicholas Stark to discuss St. Domingo / Haiti and Napoleon’s reinstitution of slavery in 1802. Was Toussaint L’Overture really a “saint” (his name translates as “all saints” or “all souls opening”)? Was Napoleon really a racist?

Nick does another amazing job of delving into the primary sources from this period to paint a picture of Napoleon’s motivations for his actions and his subsequent regrets.

Thanks to everyone for the wonderful feedback we had from the last episode. I’m sure you’ll agree that Nick does an amazing job for a 19-year old undergrad. He has a huge career ahead of him.

The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #55 – Nicholas Stark on Napoleon and Haiti (part one)


I know – it’s been a long, long…. long time!

But we are glad to be back!

On this episode, our special guest is Nicholas Stark, a 19-year-old wunderkind who David and I first met in Paris back in 2008. Nicholas is an undergraduate at West Chester University and a Fellow of the International Napoleonic Society, who has an article published in Volume 3 of the Internatonal Napoleonic Society’s Journal and who authored a paper on Napoleon and Haiti which was recently read (by INS “First Lady” Barbara Markham) at the recent INS Congress held in Malta.

One topic we often get requests to talk about in more detail is Napoleon’s involvement in the restoration of slavery in Haiti after the slave revolt lead by Toussaint L’overture. It’s a fascinating topic that is often dredged up as a criticism of Napoleon and indeed one which requires much further discussion on this podcast. In fact, this is only part one of the discussion and we’ll finish it up in at least one additional episode in coming weeks.

In this episode, Nicholas helps us understand more about the background to the slave revolt in Haiti (or Saint Domingue as it was known at the time), the role of the French Revolution and fascinating characters such as Léger-Félicité Sonthonax.

If you want to follow Nicholas’ activities or chat with him, you can find him on Twitter and his blog.

And don’t forget to keep an eye on the INS site and to buy some of David’s excellent books!

Oh and if anyone is interested, today’s version of La Marsellaise can be found here. It’s the one by Mireille Mathieu.

The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast #54 – Dr Philip Dwyer

Welcome back! It’s been a long time between shows, I’m so sorry! But you’ll LOVE this episode, trust me, it was worth waiting for!

Our guest today is Dr Philip Dwyer, Associate Professor, Faculty of Education and Arts, School of Humanities and Social Science, History Dept, University of Newscastle, Australia. Philip has a long list of credentials:

* Ph.D. University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia, 1993
* D.E.A. Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, (Diplôme d’Etudes Approfondies) Paris, 1989
* Maîtrise University of Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV), Paris, 1988
* Licence University of Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV), Paris, 1988
* B.A. Murdoch University, Perth, Australia, 1983

(see his profile page here).

Philip is also the author of “Napoleon: The Path To Power”

His book won the “National Biography Prize” in 2008.

David and I chatted with him last week about his perspectives on Napoleon. While we agreed on some things, we disagreed on other things and it lead to a passionate but always polite debate. 🙂

Please jump in the comments section of the show and let us know you’re still out there folks! We need to know if we should continue producing the show!

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