Barry O'Meara was an Irish physician who actually went with Napoleon to his exile in the remote island of St. Helena, and as a result he was perfectly positioned to write this comprehensive of Napoleon's final years after the disastrous defeat at Waterloo.
The upheavals, terror, and drama of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic period restructured politics and society on a grand scale, making this the defining moment for modern European history.
This volume collects together a wide selection of primary texts to explain the process behind the enormous changes undergone by France and Europe between 1787 and 1815, from the Terror to the Counter-Revolution and from Marie-Antoinette to Robespierre and Bonaparte. While bringing the impact of historical events to life, Philip Dwyer and Peter McPhee provide a clear outline of the period through key documents and lucid introductory passages and commentary. They illustrate the meaning of the Revolution for peasants, sans-culottes, women, and slaves, as well as placing events within a wider European context..
Students will find this an invaluable source of information on the Revolution as a whole as well as the international significance of the events.
This volume which initially appeared in the Lancet, represents a final attempt to lay or exorcise the persistent pathologic ghost of Napoleon's last illness and death. It is based on a careful examination of the documents and a microscopic study of the specimens preserved from the autopsy. Of the authenticity of these specimens there seems to be still some slight doubt; but, accepting them as genuine, there seems good ground for accepting the author's conclusion that "the cause of Napoleon's death was cancer of the lesser curvature of the stomach developing on the site of an old gastric ulcer." There were also vesical calculi, and at the apex of the left lung some small healed foci of tuberculosis. On the basis of the clinical history, and considering the medical knowledge and diagnostic methods of the time, Chaplin attempts a defence of the physicians who have been so severely criticized for their treatment of the Emperor. An appendix contains the brief biographies of these four physicians; a second, the story of the specimens, which are preserved in the museum of the Royal College of Surgeons, London; and a third an account of the exhumation of Napoleon on Oct. 16, 1840. There is a melancholy grandeur of interest associated with this final clinico-pathologic study of Napoleon's case, as with all that pertains to the history of the great Corsican.
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