The Lake District, known as the Lakes or Lakeland, is a mountainous region in North West England. A popular holiday destination, it is famous for its lakes and mountains and its associations with the early 19th century writings of William Wordsworth and the other Lake Poets. It is located in the county of Cumbria, and all the land in England higher than 3,000 feet above sea level lies within the National Park, including Scafell Pike, the highest mountain in England. It contains the deepest and longest bodies of water in England, respectively Wast Water, the Lake District National Park includes nearly all of the Lake District, though the town of Kendal and the Lakeland Peninsulas are currently outside the park boundary. Its aim is to protect the landscape by restricting unwelcome change by industry or commerce, Most of the land in the park is in private ownership, with about 55% registered as agricultural land. Landowners include, Individual farmers and other landowners, with more than half of the agricultural land farmed by the owners.
The National Trust owns about a quarter of the total area, the Forestry Commission and other investors in forests and woodland. United Utilities owns 8% Lake District National Park Authority The National Park Authority is based at offices in Kendal and it runs a visitor centre on Windermere at a former country house called Brockhole, Coniston Boating Centre, and Information Centres. Much of the land has statutory open access rights, which cover around 50% of the park. The lakes and mountains combine to form impressive scenery and settlement have altered the natural scenery, and the ecology has been modified by human influence for millennia and includes important wildlife habitats. However, in 2016 the English Lake District bid for World Heritage Status was submitted to UNESCO in the category of cultural landscape, a decision is expected in 2017. In December 2009, Natural England proposed extending the National Park in the direction of the Yorkshire Dales National Park and this would include land of high landscape value in the Lune Valley.
The proposal was opposed by Cumbria County Council who said it would lead to less democratic control, a public inquiry was held into the proposals, which required a decision by the Secretary of State. The decision to recommend approval was announced on October 23,2015, the precise extent of the Lake District was not defined traditionally, but is slightly larger than that of the National Park, the total area of which is about 912 square miles. The park extends just over 32 miles from east to west, the Lake District is one of the most highly populated national parks. There are, only a handful of settlements within this mountainous area, the towns of Keswick, Ambleside. Villages such as Coniston, Glenridding, Pooley Bridge, Broughton-in-Furness, Newby Bridge, Lindale, the economies of almost all are intimately linked with tourism. Beyond these are a scattering of hamlets and many isolated farmsteads, some of which are tied to agriculture
Hobart is the capital and most populous city of the Australian island state of Tasmania. It is the least populated state capital in Australia, founded in 1803 as a penal colony, Hobart is Australias second oldest capital city after Sydney, New South Wales. The modern history of Hobart dates to its foundation as a British colony in 1803, prior to British settlement, the area had been occupied for possibly as long as 35,000 years, by the semi-nomadic Mouheneener tribe, a sub-group of the Nuennone, or South-East tribe. The descendants of the indigenous Tasmanians now refer to themselves as Palawa, Hobart has experienced both booms and busts over its history. In the years of the 20th century, migrants arrived to settle in Hobart from Asia. In June 2015, the city had an area population of approximately 221,000. The city is located in the states south-east on the estuary of the Derwent River and its harbour forms the second-deepest natural port in the world. Its skyline is dominated by the 1, 271-metre kunanyi/Mount Wellington, the metropolitan area is often referred to as Greater Hobart, to differentiate it from the City of Hobart, one of the five local government areas that cover the city.
The first European settlement began in 1803 as a colony at Risdon Cove on the eastern shores of the Derwent River. In 1804 it was moved to a location at the present site of Hobart at Sullivans Cove. The city, initially known as Hobart Town or Hobarton, was named after Lord Hobart, the British secretary of state for war, the areas indigenous inhabitants were members of the semi-nomadic Mouheneener tribe. Charles Darwin visited Hobart Town in February 1836 as part of the Beagle expedition, I was chiefly struck with the comparative fewness of the large houses, either built or building. Hobart Town, from the census of 1835, contained 13,826 inhabitants, the Derwent River was one of Australias finest deepwater ports and was the centre of the Southern Ocean whaling and sealing trades. The settlement rapidly grew into a port, with allied industries such as shipbuilding. Hobart Town became a city on 21 August 1842, and was renamed Hobart from the beginning of 1881, Hobart is located on the estuary of the Derwent River in the states south-east.
Geologically Hobart is built predominantly on Jurassic dolerite around the foothills interspersed with areas of Triassic siltstone. Both of these areas rest on the younger Jurassic dolerite deposits, before stretching into the areas such as the beaches of Sandy Bay in the south. South of the Derwent estuary lies Storm Bay and the Tasman Peninsula, the Eastern Shore extends from the Derwent valley area in a southerly direction hugging the Meehan Range in the east before sprawling into flatter land in suburbs such as Bellerive
Abel Janszoon Tasman was a Dutch seafarer and merchant, best known for his voyages of 1642 and 1644 in the service of the Dutch East India Company. In 1633 he sailed from Texel to Batavia in the service of the Dutch East India Company, Tasman took part in a voyage to Seram Island, the locals had sold spices to others than the Dutch. He had a escape from death, when in an incautious landing several of his companions were killed by people of Seram. In August 1637 he was back in Amsterdam, and the year he signed on for another ten years. On 25 March 1638 he tried to sell his property in the Jordaan, in 1639 he was second-in-command of an exploration expedition in the north Pacific under Matthijs Quast. The fleet included the ships Engel and Gracht and reached Fort Zeelandia and this expedition used two small ships, the Heemskerck and the Zeehaen. According to Marco Polo, Locach was a kingdom where gold was “so plentiful that no one who did not see it could believe it”, Beach was in fact a mistranscription of Locach.
Locach was Marco Polo’s name for the southern Thai kingdom of Lavo, or Lop Buri, in Chinese, Lavo was pronounced “Lo-huk”, from which Marco Polo took his rendition of the name. In the German cursive script, “Locach” and “Boeach” look similar and they seem to have drawn on the map of the world published in Florence in 1489 by Henricus Martellus, in which provincia boëach appears as the southern neighbour of provincia ciamba. Book III of Marco Polo’s Il Milione described his journey by sea from China to India by way of Champa, Locach, after a chapter describing the kingdom of Champa there follows a chapter describing Java. Locach, located between Champa and Sumatra, was likewise misplaced far to the south of Java, by some geographers on or near an extension of the Terra Australis. Gerard Mercator did just that on his 1541 globe, placing Beach provincia aurifera in the northernmost part of the Terra Australis in accordance with the faulty text of Marco Polo’s Travels. Following Mercator, Abraham Ortelius showed BEACH and LVCACH in these locations on his map of 1571.
Confirmation that land existed where the maps showed Beach to be had come from Dirk Hartog’s landing in October 1616 on its west coast, which he called Eendrachtsland after the name of his ship. In accordance with Visschers directions, Tasman sailed from Batavia on 14 August 1642 and arrived at Mauritius on 5 September 1642, the reason for this was the crew could be fed well on the island, there was plenty of fresh water and timber to repair the ships. Tasman got the assistance of the governor Adriaan van der Stel, because of the prevailing winds Mauritius was chosen as a turning point. After a four-week stay on the island both ships left on 8 October using the Roaring Forties to sail east as fast as possible. On 7 November snow and hail influenced the ships council to alter course to a more north-eastern direction, on 24 November 1642 Abel Tasman reached and sighted the west coast of Tasmania, north of Macquarie Harbour
Table Mountain is a flat-topped mountain forming a prominent landmark overlooking the city of Cape Town in South Africa. It is a significant tourist attraction, with visitors using the cableway or hiking to the top. The mountain forms part of the Table Mountain National Park, the main feature of Table Mountain is the level plateau approximately 3 kilometres from side to side, edged by impressive cliffs. The plateau, flanked by Devils Peak to the east and by Lions Head to the west and this broad sweep of mountainous heights, together with Signal Hill, forms the natural amphitheatre of the City Bowl and Table Bay harbour. The highest point on Table Mountain is towards the end of the plateau and is marked by Maclears Beacon. It is 1,086 metres above sea level, nou en about 19 metres higher than the station at the western end of the plateau. Legend attributes this phenomenon to a smoking contest between the Devil and a pirate called Van Hunks. When the table cloth is seen, it symbolizes the contest, immediately to the south of Table Mountain is a rugged plateau at a somewhat lower elevation than the Table Mountain Plateau, called the Back Table.
The Back Table extends southwards for approximately 6 km to the Constantia Nek-Hout Bay valley, the Atlantic side of the Back Table, is known as the Twelve Apostles, which extends from Kloof Nek to Hout Bay. It is better known by the names of the areas on its the lower slopes, Groote Schuur Estate, Newlands Forest, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, Cecilia Forest. The upper approximately 600 m portion of the 1 km high table-topped mountain, or mesa, the Graafwater rocks can best be seen just above the contour path on the front of Table Mountain, and around Devils Peak. They can seen in the cutting along Chapmans Peak Drive. These rocks are believed to have originated in shallow tidal flats, in which a few Ordovician fossils, the overlying TMS probably arose in deeper water, either as a result of subsidence, or a rise in the sea level. The Graafwater rocks rest on the basement consisting of Cape Granite, Devils Peak, Signal Hill, the City Bowl and much of the Cape Flats, rest on heavily folded and altered phyllites and hornfelses known informally as the Malmesbury shales.
The Cape Granite and Malmesbury shales form the lower, gentler slopes of the Table Mountain range on the Cape Peninsula and they are of late Precambrian age, pre-dating the Graafwater rocks by at least 40 million years. The basement rocks are not nearly as resistant to weathering as the TMS, but significant outcrops of the Cape Granite are visible on the side of Lions Head. The weathered granite soil of the slopes of the Peninsula Mountain range are more fertile than the nutrient-poor soils derived from TMS. Most of the vineyards found on the Cape Peninsula are therefore found on granitic slopes of the Table Mountain range
Skiddaw is a mountain in the Lake District National Park in England, where its 931-metre summit is the sixth-highest in England. It lies just north of the town of Keswick, Cumbria and it is the simplest of the Lake District mountains of this height to ascend and, as such, many walking guides recommend it to the occasional walker wishing to climb a mountain. This is the first summit of the fell running challenge known as the Bob Graham Round when undertaken in a clockwise direction and it provides the name for the slate derived from that region, Skiddaw slate. Tuned percussion musical instruments or lithophones exist which are made from the slate, such as the Musical Stones of Skiddaw held at the Keswick Museum, the Northern Fells make up a roughly circular upland area approaching 10 miles in width. The south-western sector, between the Glenderaterra Beck and Dash Beck, contains Skiddaw and its satellites, Skiddaw itself takes the form of a north-south ridge about half a mile long, with steep slopes to east and west.
The ridge continues northwards over Broad End to Bakestall, a fell overlooking the Whitewater Dash waterfall, further ridges fan out east and west from the southern end of Skiddaw. To the south-east are Skiddaw Little Man, Lonscale Fell and Latrigg, beyond these fells are the Glenderaterra Beck and the Blencathra group. The south-western ridge curves round through 180 degrees to run north above the shore of Bassenthwaite Lake and this gives Skiddaw an outer wall, comprising Carl Side, Long Side and Ullock Pike, collectively referred to as Longside Edge. The final member of the Skiddaw Group is Dodd, a satellite of Carl Side, between Skiddaw and Longside Edge are the quiet valleys of Southerndale and Barkbethdale, separated by the spur of Buzzard Knott. These drain the western flanks of the fell to Bassenthwaite Lake, the eastern side of Skiddaw drains into Skiddaw Forest, much of the water reaching Candleseaves Bog. This marsh is the source of both the Dash Beck flowing north west to Bassenthwaite and the River Caldew, beginning its long journey north-eastward to the Solway Firth via Carlisle.
Two smooth spurs on this flank of Skiddaw, Sale How. Sale How is a Nuttall, Skiddaws slopes are generally rounded and convex, looking from a distance as though a thick velvet blanket has been draped over a supporting frame. On the ridges the general terrain is of loose stones, but elsewhere all is grass and heather. ’ The bedrock of Skiddaw and this Ordovician rock is composed of laminated mudstone and siltstone with greywacke sandstone. At the summit this is overlain by scree and to the south are areas where the underlying Loweswater Formation surfaces, the summit ridge bears a number of tops, which from north to south are known as North Top, High Man, Middle Top and South Top. All now bear cairns and a number of stone windshelters have been erected, Skiddaw has a subsidiary summit, Little Man, which lies about 1.5 km south-south-east of the main peak. Despite its limited independence, Wainwright listed it as a fell in his influential Pictorial Guide to the Lakeland Fells. Skiddaw Little Man has its own subsidiary summit, known as Lesser Man, the view is as panoramic as might be expected, given Skiddaws topographic prominence
In climbing, a first ascent is the first successful, documented attainment of the top of a mountain, or the first to follow a particular climbing route. First ascents are notable because they entail genuine exploration, with risks, challenges. The person who performs the first ascent is called the first ascensionist, the details of the first ascents of even many prominent mountains are scanty or unknown, sometimes the only evidence of prior summiting is a cairn, artifacts, or inscriptions at the top. Today, first ascents are generally recorded and usually mentioned in guidebooks. Overwhelmingly, the idea of a first ascent is a one, especially in places such as Africa. There may be little or no evidence or documentation about the climbing activities of indigenous peoples living near the mountain. The term is used when referring to ascents made using a specific technique or taking a specific route, such as via the North Face. In rock climbing, some of the earlier first ascents, particularly for difficult routes, involved a mix of free, as a result, purist free climbers have developed the designation first free ascent to acknowledge ascents intentionally made more challenging by using equipment for protection only.
Some other first ascents could be recorded for particular mountains or routes, one is the First Winter Ascent, which is, as the name easily suggests, the first ascent made during winter season. This is most important where the climate of winter is a factor in increasing the difficulty grade of the route, in the Northern Hemisphere conventional winter ascents are made between December 21 and March 21 and are not related to the conditions. Also in the Himalayan area, although Nepal and Chinas winter season permits start on December 1, another is the First Solo Ascent, which is the first ascent made by a single climber. This is most important on high-level rock climbing, when the climber has to provide his own security or even when climbing without any protection at all, another type of ascent, known as FFA is the first female ascent. The term last ascent has been used to refer to an ascent of a mountain or face that has changed to such an extent – often because of rockfall – that the route no longer exists.
It can be used facetiously to refer to a climb that is so unpleasant or unaesthetic that no one would willingly repeat the first ascent partys ordeal. List of first ascents List of first ascents in the Alps List of first ascents in the Himalaya Glossary of climbing terms Alpinist Magazine – Peter Mortimers First Ascent, Issue 17
The Aboriginal Tasmanians are the indigenous people of the Australian state of Tasmania, located south of the mainland. In the 20th century the Tasmanian Aboriginal people were thought of as being an extinct cultural. Before British colonisation in 1803, there were an estimated 3, the Palawa population was severely depleted in the 19th century. A number of point to introduced disease as the major cause of the depletion of the 19th century mainland Aboriginal population. Geoffrey Blainey wrote that by 1830 in Tasmania, Disease had killed most of them but warfare, other historians regard the Black War as one of the earliest recorded modern genocides. Benjamin Madley wrote, Despite over 170 years of debate over who or what was responsible for this near-extinction, no consensus exists on its origins, however, UN definition, sufficient evidence exists to designate the Tasmanian catastrophe genocide. The survivors were moved to Wybalenna Aboriginal Establishment on Flinders Island, in 1847, the last 47 living inhabitants of Wybalenna were transferred to Oyster Cove, south of Hobart.
Two individuals and Fanny Cochrane Smith, are considered to have been the last people solely of Tasmanian descent. People crossed into Tasmania approximately 40,000 years, ago via a bridge between the island and the rest of mainland Australia, during the last glacial period. Archaeologists excavating a 600 metre long section of river bank found a number of stone tools. Preliminary dating indicates that the site was occupied from 40,000 BP to 28,000 BP making the site 6,000 years older than the Warreen cave. Tasmania was colonised by successive waves of people from southern Australia during glacial maxima. People migrating from southern Australia into peninsular Tasmania would have crossed stretches of seawater and desert, the archeological and linguistic record suggests a pattern of successive occupation of Tasmania, and coalescence of three ethnic or language groups into one broad group. Colonial settlers found two main groups in Tasmania upon their arrival, which correlates with the broader nation or clan divisions.
Pleistocene Palawa language group - first ethnic and language group in Tasmania - absorbed or displaced by successive invasions except for remnant group on Tasman peninsula, archeological evidence suggests remnant populations on the King and Furneaux highlands being stranded by rising waters - to die out. After separation from mainland Australia, the Tasmanian people were not able to share any of the new technological advances being made by mainland groups and this made the Aboriginal Tasmanians a people that could flourish with some of the simplest technologies on record. The Tasmanian Aboriginal people extensively used fire for cooking and clearing vegetation to encourage and their capacity to create fire via the friction method had been questioned by authors in the 20th Century, though a document from 1887 clearly describes fire-lighting techniques used among Tasmanians. The historical evidence indicates their fire making ability, even though they preferred to bear coals when travelling between campsites - a consequence of Tasmanias wet maritime climate
River Derwent (Tasmania)
The Derwent is a river in Tasmania, Australia. The banks of the Derwent were once covered by forests and occupied by Tasmanian Aborigines, european settlers farmed the area and during the 20th century many dams were built on its tributaries for the generation of hydro-electricity. Agriculture, hydropower generation and fish hatcheries dominate catchment land use, the Derwent is an important source of water for irrigation and water supply. Most of Hobarts water supply is taken from the lower Derwent River, nearly 40% of Tasmanias population lives around the estuarys margins and the Derwent is widely used for recreation, recreational fishing, marine transportation and industry. It was named after the River Derwent, Cumbria, by British Commodore John Hayes who explored it in 1793, the name is Brythonic Celtic for valley thick with oaks. John Hayes placed the name Derwent River only in the part of the river. Matthew Flinders placed the name on all of the river, the Derwent River valley was inhabited by the Mouheneener people for at least 8,000 years before British settlement.
Evidence of their occupation is found in many middens along the banks of the river, in 1793, John Hayes named it after the River Derwent, which runs past his birthplace of Bridekirk, Cumberland. When first explored by Europeans, the parts of the valley were clad in thick she-oak forests, remnants of which remain in various parts of the lower foreshore. There was a whaling industry until the 1840s when the industry rapidly declined due to over-exploitation. Flows average in range from 50 to 140 cubic metres per second, the largest vessel to ever travel the Derwent is the 113, 000-tonne, 61-metre high, ocean liner Diamond Princess, which made her first visit in January 2006. At points in its lower reaches the river is nearly 3 kilometres wide, until the construction of several hydro-electric dams between 1934 and 1968, the river was prone to flooding. The Upper Derwent is affected by agricultural run-off, particularly land clearing. The Lower Derwent suffers from high levels of metal contamination in sediments.
The Tasmanian Government-backed Derwent Estuary Program has commented that the levels of mercury, zinc, in 2015 the program recommended against consuming shellfish and cautioned against consuming fish in general. Nutrient levels in the Derwent between 2010 and 2015 increased in the estuary where there had been algal blooms. The Derwent adjoins or flows through the Pittwater–Orielton Lagoon, Interlaken Lakeside Reserve and Goulds Lagoon, in recent years, southern right whales finally started making appearance in the river during months in winter and spring when their migration takes place. In the winter months of 2014, humpback whales and a minke whale have been recorded feeding in the Derwent River for the first time since the days of the 1800s
Robert Brown (botanist, born 1773)
Robert Brown FRSE FRS FLS MWS was a Scottish botanist and palaeobotanist who made important contributions to botany largely through his pioneering use of the microscope. Brown was born in Montrose on 21 December 1773 and he was the son of James Brown, a minister in the Scottish Episcopal Church with Jacobite convictions so strong that in 1788 he defied his churchs decision to give allegiance to George III. His mother was Helen née Taylor, the daughter of a Presbyterian minister, as a child Brown attended the local Grammar School, Marischal College at Aberdeen, but withdrew in his fourth year when the family moved to Edinburgh in 1790. His father died late the following year, Brown enrolled to study medicine at the University of Edinburgh, but developed an interest in botany, and ended up spending more of his time on the latter than the former. He began corresponding with and collecting for William Withering, one of the foremost British botanists of his day, Brown dropped out of his medical course in 1793.
Late in 1794, he enlisted in the Fifeshire Fencibles, in June 1795 he was appointed Surgeons Mate. His regiment saw little action, however, he had a good deal of leisure time. During this period Brown was especially interested in cryptogams, and these would be the subject of Browns first, albeit unattributed, Brown began a correspondence with James Dickson, and by 1796 was sending him specimens and descriptions of mosses. Dickson incorporated Browns descriptions into his Fasciculi plantarum cryptogamicarum britanniae, with Browns permission and he had begun experimenting with microscopy. However, as a surgeon stationed in Ireland there seemed little prospect of him attracting the notice of those who could offer him a career in botany. In 1798, Brown heard that Mungo Park had withdrawn from an expedition into the interior of New Holland. At Browns request, Correia wrote to Sir Joseph Banks, suggesting Brown as a replacement, Science is the gainer in this change of man. He is a Scotchman, fit to pursue an object with constance and he was not selected, and the expedition did not end up going ahead as originally proposed, though George Caley was sent to New South Wales as a botanical collector for Banks.
In 1800, Matthew Flinders put to Banks a proposal for an expedition that would answer the question whether New Holland was one island or several, Banks approved Flinders proposal, and in December 1800 wrote to Brown offering him the position of naturalist to the expedition. Brown was told to expect to sail at the end of 1800, a succession of delays meant the voyage did not get under way until July 1801. Brown spent much of the meantime preparing for the voyage by studying Banks Australian plant specimens and copying out notes and descriptions for use on the voyage. Though Browns brief was collect scientific specimens of all sorts, he was told to give priority to plants and birds, and to treat other fields, such as geology, as secondary pursuits. Brown was given authority over Bauer and Good, both of whom were instructed to give any specimens they collect to Brown, rather than forming separate collections
It contains the geographic South Pole and is situated in the Antarctic region of the Southern Hemisphere, almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle, and is surrounded by the Southern Ocean. At 14,000,000 square kilometres, it is the fifth-largest continent, for comparison, Antarctica is nearly twice the size of Australia. About 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice that averages 1.9 km in thickness, Antarctica, on average, is the coldest and windiest continent, and has the highest average elevation of all the continents. Antarctica is a desert, with precipitation of only 200 mm along the coast. The temperature in Antarctica has reached −89.2 °C, though the average for the quarter is −63 °C. Anywhere from 1,000 to 5,000 people reside throughout the year at the research stations scattered across the continent. Organisms native to Antarctica include many types of algae, fungi, protista, where it occurs, is tundra. The continent, remained neglected for the rest of the 19th century because of its hostile environment, lack of easily accessible resources.
In 1895, the first confirmed landing was conducted by a team of Norwegians, Antarctica is a de facto condominium, governed by parties to the Antarctic Treaty System that have consulting status. Twelve countries signed the Antarctic Treaty in 1959, and thirty-eight have signed it since then, the treaty prohibits military activities and mineral mining, prohibits nuclear explosions and nuclear waste disposal, supports scientific research, and protects the continents ecozone. Ongoing experiments are conducted by more than 4,000 scientists from many nations, the name Antarctica is the romanised version of the Greek compound word ἀνταρκτική, feminine of ἀνταρκτικός, meaning opposite to the Arctic, opposite to the north. Aristotle wrote in his book Meteorology about an Antarctic region in c.350 B. C, marinus of Tyre reportedly used the name in his unpreserved world map from the 2nd century A. D. Before acquiring its present geographical connotations, the term was used for locations that could be defined as opposite to the north.
For example, the short-lived French colony established in Brazil in the 16th century was called France Antarctique, the first formal use of the name Antarctica as a continental name in the 1890s is attributed to the Scottish cartographer John George Bartholomew. Antarctica has no population and there is no evidence that it was seen by humans until the 19th century. Explorer Matthew Flinders, in particular, has credited with popularising the transfer of the name Terra Australis to Australia. Cook came within about 120 km of the Antarctic coast before retreating in the face of ice in January 1773. The first confirmed sighting of Antarctica can be narrowed down to the crews of ships captained by three individuals, according to various organisations, ships captained by three men sighted Antarctica or its ice shelf in 1820, von Bellingshausen, Edward Bransfield, and Nathaniel Palmer
Napoleon Bonaparte was a French military and political leader who rose to prominence during the French Revolution and led several successful campaigns during the French Revolutionary Wars. As Napoleon I, he was Emperor of the French from 1804 until 1814, Napoleon dominated European and global affairs for more than a decade while leading France against a series of coalitions in the Napoleonic Wars. He won most of these wars and the vast majority of his battles, one of the greatest commanders in history, his wars and campaigns are studied at military schools worldwide. Napoleons political and cultural legacy has ensured his status as one of the most celebrated and he was born Napoleone di Buonaparte in Corsica to a relatively modest family from the minor nobility. When the Revolution broke out in 1789, Napoleon was serving as an officer in the French army. Seizing the new opportunities presented by the Revolution, he rose through the ranks of the military. The Directory eventually gave him command of the Army of Italy after he suppressed a revolt against the government from royalist insurgents, in 1798, he led a military expedition to Egypt that served as a springboard to political power.
He engineered a coup in November 1799 and became First Consul of the Republic and his ambition and public approval inspired him to go further, and in 1804 he became the first Emperor of the French. Intractable differences with the British meant that the French were facing a Third Coalition by 1805, in 1806, the Fourth Coalition took up arms against him because Prussia became worried about growing French influence on the continent. Napoleon quickly defeated Prussia at the battles of Jena and Auerstedt, marched the Grand Army deep into Eastern Europe, France forced the defeated nations of the Fourth Coalition to sign the Treaties of Tilsit in July 1807, bringing an uneasy peace to the continent. Tilsit signified the high watermark of the French Empire, hoping to extend the Continental System and choke off British trade with the European mainland, Napoleon invaded Iberia and declared his brother Joseph the King of Spain in 1808. The Spanish and the Portuguese revolted with British support, the Peninsular War lasted six years, featured extensive guerrilla warfare, and ended in victory for the Allies.
The Continental System caused recurring diplomatic conflicts between France and its client states, especially Russia, unwilling to bear the economic consequences of reduced trade, the Russians routinely violated the Continental System and enticed Napoleon into another war. The French launched an invasion of Russia in the summer of 1812. The resulting campaign witnessed the collapse of the Grand Army, the destruction of Russian cities, in 1813, Prussia and Austria joined Russian forces in a Sixth Coalition against France. A lengthy military campaign culminated in a large Allied army defeating Napoleon at the Battle of Leipzig in October 1813, the Allies invaded France and captured Paris in the spring of 1814, forcing Napoleon to abdicate in April. He was exiled to the island of Elba near Rome and the Bourbons were restored to power, Napoleon escaped from Elba in February 1815 and took control of France once again. The Allies responded by forming a Seventh Coalition, which defeated Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo in June, the British exiled him to the remote island of Saint Helena in the South Atlantic, where he died six years at the age of 51