Volume VII: 1807 – Tilsit, l’apogée de l’Empire

corresp 7The beautifully orchestrated meeting between Napoleon and Alexander at Tilsit proved to be the turning point in 1807. Indeed, the year can be quite neatly divided into two clear and distinct halves: pre- and post-Tilsit. The first semester, cold and uncertain, followed on naturally from the war-torn December of 1806, with a long and difficult campaign conducted far beyond France’s borders, a period softened only by the idyllic moments spent by the commander in chief in the company of Marie Walewska. On the other hand, the second half – post-Tilsit – seemed destined to usher in an era of lasting peace. This respite was to prove brief however: with no end in sight to the Franco-British war, the two sides continued to develop new plans for intervention further afield. The British were to shoot first at Copenhagen; the French prepared to return fire in Portugal. Elsewhere, operations in Sweden and in Naples continued apace, whilst relations between Napoleon and the Papacy worsened.

This seventh volume of the General Correspondence of Napoleon Bonaparte covers the year of 1807 and includes 3,020 letters (an increase in excess of 37% on the edition published during the Second Empire), fully annotated by specialists of the period.


– Preface, by V.-A. Masséna, President of the Fondation Napoléon
– Introduction, by M. Kerautret and G. Madec
– Correspondence: 3,020 annotated letters
– List of letters in private collections: contents unknown
– Annexes
— The Treaties of Tilsit, by M. Kerautret
— The sénatus-consulte of 19 August, 1807, concerning the organisation of the Corps Législatif, by T. Lentz
— 1807 timeline, by I. Delage
— Table of places mentioned in the correspondence and their modern-day equivalents (Poland, Russia and Lithuania)
— Table of measures and currencies
– Maps
— Campaign of 1807, January – February
— Battle of Eylau, 8 February, 1807: early in the battle (before Murat’s charge)
— Battle of Eylau, 8 February, 1807: situation at end of day
— Schloss Finckenstein
— Campaign of 1807, April – June
— Battle of Friedland, 14 June, 1807: situation before Napoleon’s arrival
— Battle of Friedland, 14 June, 1807: situation after Napoleon’s arrival
— Tilsit, June 1807
— West and East Prussia in 1807
– Written and bibliographical sources
– Adressee index (individuals, institutions, entities and authorities), place index

The Fondation Napoléon is supported in this historic project – an extraordinary exercise unlike anything attempted before – by the Archives de France, the Fondation La Poste and more than one hundred volunteers.

Michel Kerautret, Gabriel Madec (eds.), assisted by François Houdecek, Marie Baudouin and Irène Delage; preface by Victor-André Masséna, Prince d’Essling, President of the Fondation Napoléon

Paris, Éditions Fayard, 2010, 1588 pages.