Antiquates Limited - Logo

AUTUMN IN MOSCOW (BUT WINTER WAS COMING)

[NAPOLEON]. [Caption title:] XXe. bulletin de la grande armee. Moscou, le 17 Septembre 1812.

Montpellier. l'Imprimerie de Mme. Picot, [1812].
Dimensions 460 x 360 mm. Single leaf broadside. With the Imperial eagle vignette to head. Early vertical and horizontal folds, edges uncut. A trifle browned, single small hole touching text, without loss of sense.
An original example, published in Montpelier, of the twentieth bulletin of the Grand Armée in Russia. These bulletins were issued by Napoleon in order to communicate progress of his most significant military campaign to date to the French public. Immensely significant propaganda tools, these bulletins explained the prevailing conditions; in this case, reporting on the French capture of Moscow in the preceding days.

Although not the political capital of Russia, the city's fall represented a severe blow to defending army. As the bulletin notes, 'Moscou est l'entreport de l'Asie et de l'Europe; ses magasins etaient immenses; toutes les maisons etaient approvisionnees de tout pour huit mois'. Somewhat ominously, given the benefit of hindsight, the bulletin closes, somewhat bombastically, with a reference to the temperature, and the availability of coats and furs: 'La temperature est encore celle de l'automne: le soldat a trouve et trouve beaucoup de pelisses et des fourrures pour l'hiver. Moscou en est le magasin'. Within three months, in the now infamous XXIXe. Bulletin, Napoleon was to report the full extent of the calamitous failure of the Russian campaign - blaming his military failure almost entirely upon the weather.
£ 750.00 Antiquates Ref: 20594