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Scientists Test Remains Kept in Attic for Battle of Waterloo Ties

Man turns bones over to Belgian archives

(Newser) - After Bernard Wilkin, of the State Archives of Belgium, spoke in the village of Waterloo in November about what became of the remains of troops killed in the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, a man approached him. "Dr. Wilkin," he said, "I have bones of these Prussians...

Remote Island Marks 200 Years Since Napoleon's Death

French emperor died in exile on St. Helena

(Newser) - Getting to the remote South Atlantic island where Napoleon died 200 years ago got even harder during the pandemic. So while commemorations of the May 5, 1821 death of the deposed French emperor on British-ruled St. Helena are going ahead there, they are not happening with the influx of international...

One-Legged Skeleton Might Solve Napoleonic Mystery

It could be the remains of Gen. Charles-Étienne Gudin, missing since 1812

(Newser) - A one-legged skeleton found under a Russian dance floor could solve a mystery that has persisted since 1812. Charles-Étienne Gudin, whom the BBC refers to as Napoleon Bonaparte's "favorite general," was hit by a cannonball during the failed French invasion of Russia that year; he had...

Cannonball Alters History of Waterloo

It suggests French army reached British field hospital before defeat

(Newser) - Rare human remains—specifically, amputated leg bones—have been discovered at the site of the 200-year-old battle that marked Napoleon's final defeat. Archaeologists were combing the site of farm buildings that were used as a British field hospital during the Battle of Waterloo in what is now Belgium when...

Was Napoleon Taken Down by a Volcano? Perhaps
Did a Volcano Play a Role in
Napoleon's Downfall? Maybe
in case you missed it

Did a Volcano Play a Role in Napoleon's Downfall? Maybe

New study suggests eruption played a role in poor weather conditions during battle

(Newser) - Here's an unexpected theory: that Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo in June 1815 was partly caused by the eruption of an volcano in Indonesia. It's a suggestion tacked onto the end of a study by Dr. Matthew Genge of the Imperial College London published Wednesday in Geology . Titled...

An Item Left on the Waterloo Battlefield Just Sold for $400K

That's more than Napoleon's bicorne hat was expected to fetch

(Newser) - Napoleon's hats were a big deal. The BBC explains he had a system for breaking in and wearing the "bicorne" military hats that he famously wore sideways so as to be better spotted by his troops: He introduced four new ones each year that were first worn by...

How a Neurosurgeon Brought Down Napoleon

Russian general's remarkable brain surgery saved his life, resulted in visionary strategy

(Newser) - As Napoleon Bonaparte's forces moved toward Moscow in the autumn of 1812, Russian General Mikhail Kutuzov burned his own city, fled east, and left Moscow open to invaders. But what some supposed were the actions of a madman instead proved visionary, as Napoleon's troops couldn't handle the...

Napoleon's Waterloo Didn't Come at Waterloo

Braine-l’Alleud would finally like some credit

(Newser) - History buffs—and tourists with money to spend—will be swarming on Waterloo, Belgium, next week to mark the 200th anniversary of Napoleon's famous last battle. The nearby town of Braine-l’Alleud isn't too thrilled about it, however. As the Wall Street Journal reports, the Battle of Waterloo...

Up for Auction: Napoleon's Will

Copy expected to fetch $160K

(Newser) - History buffs will have to dig deep if they hope to score a rare copy of Napoleon's will at auction tomorrow. The AP reports that the sale at Paris' Drouot Auction house is expected to fetch about $160,000. A few odds and ends about the document, which is...

Napoleon-Era Telegraph Revolutionized Communication

Rudimentary system sent messages over great distances quickly

(Newser) - If the telegraph is like old-school email, then this is like old-school telegraph: The BBC takes a look at a system of distance communication developed by a French inventor in the late 1790s that seems crude by today's standards but was ingenious in its day. Claude Chappe's telegraph—...

Want to Play Napoleon? So Do These Guys—Bad

Two actors vie for coveted role in Waterloo reenactment

(Newser) - France no longer has an emperor, but tell that to Frank Samson and Mark Schneider. The Frenchman and American, respectively, are vying for the role of Napoleon in a massive 200th-anniversary reenactment of the battle of Waterloo—and neither will take defeat lying down, the Wall Street Journal reports. "...

10 Strangest Amusement Parks
 10 Strangest Amusement Parks 

10 Strangest Amusement Parks

Try Napoleonland and Dickens World for starters

(Newser) - Roller coasters, water slides, and teacups are boring. Take a trip to one of these 10 strange amusement parks, compiled by Time .
  • Napoleonland: Opening in France in 2014, this park is dedicated to the French dictator and will feature a water show reenactment of the Battle of Trafalgar and a

3 Dead Guys We Just Can't Leave Alone

Their causes of death still puzzle researchers

(Newser) - These folks have been dead for centuries—and yet we still won’t leave them alone. Discover presents a list of celebs whose mysterious deaths keep us snooping:
  • Napoleon Bonaparte. In 1961, researchers found a lot of arsenic in the emperor’s hair, prompting speculation that he was poinsoned. Two

Napoleon's Novella Reveals His Sappy Side

It's on the romantic life of an ambitious soldier

(Newser) - Before Napoleon the ruthless emperor came Napoleon the romance-writing softy—and his masterpiece is due out in English this fall. Clisson and Eugenie is a novella about a triumphant soldier who returns home to marry his lady—of the same name as Napoleon’s first love. The manuscript, penned when...

Oldest Living Creature May Be a (Relative) Youngster

Giant tortoise may be much younger

(Newser) - A giant tortoise widely believed to be the world's oldest living creature may be a much younger relative that earned the title through mistaken identity, the BBC reports. Jonathan, a giant tortoise said to have been living on the South Atlantic island of St. Helena when Napoleon was exiled there...

Napolean Didn't Meet Aresenic-Laced End

Italian researchers deflate claim of arsenic death

(Newser) - For decades scholars have debated whether Napoleon, who died in exile on the island of St. Helena in 1821, was poisoned with arsenic by his British captors; as recently as 2002 a biographer wrote that there was "nothing improbable about the hypothesis." But now a team of Italian...

Waterloo—You Know, Like in the ABBA Song

Italian exec with loose grasp of history becomes YouTube hit

(Newser) - An telecom exec came up short in a motivational speech to employees when he called the battle of Waterloo a victory for Napoleon. Now clips of the animated Italian manager urging his staff to "go ahead and score like Napoleon at Waterloo" have become a YouTube hit, the ANSA...

Arsenic Wasn't Napoleon's Waterloo: Study

Military diet, not murderous Brits, likely killed the little emperor

(Newser) - Rumors that Napoleon Bonaparte was poisoned with arsenic have persisted since he died in exile 187 years ago on the island of St. Helena. Italian scientists now say they've established that the French emperor's death had more to do with bad French army food than murderous British guards, the Daily ...

Sarkozy: Short, Hyper, and Still Very European

The new Napoleon may signal a world turning away from America

(Newser) - A New Yorker profile compares Nicolas Sarkozy to Napoleon: He's not just short, but he's both more Euro-centric and less of a reactionary than most Americans think. In fact, Adam Gopnik, who dubs the brazen, mercurial Sarko a "human bomb," writes than the nouveau regime may signal "...

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