The majority of the documents in this collection deal with
The Hundred Days ( les Cent-Jours ) , sometimes known as the Hundred Days
of Napoleon or Napoleon's Hundred Days, marking the period between Napoleon's
return from exile on the island of Elba to Paris on 20 March 1815 and the
second restoration of King Louis XVIII on 8 July 1815 (a period of 111
days). This period saw the War of the Seventh Coalition, and includes the
Waterloo Campaign, the Neapolitan War as well as several other minor campaigns.
The phrase les Cent Jours (the hundred days) was first used by the prefect
of Paris, Gaspard, comte de Chabrol, in his speech welcoming the king back
to Paris on 8 July.
1815, Napoleon’s return from Elba
The Hundred Days - Les Cent Jours
posters and newspapers, a collection
Provenance: This collection comes from the 80,000 volume
library of the Royal Ernst August Fideicomiss library ( House of Hanover
) auctioned in 1970 and February 1971 in Hamburg at Dr. Ernst
Hauswedell & Co., lot 2891, the 2-volume catalogue of this auction
is also included.
The collection is kept in the original carton folder marked:
“ aus dem Jahre 1815 – Proklamationen u. Zeitungsnummern”. In pencil the
auction number Nd. 2891.
Aus der Versteigerung der aus 80 000 Bänden umfassenden
Königlich Ernst August Fideicomiss-Bibliothek, Hannover, in
Hamburg bei Dr. Ernst Hauswedell & Co.,Verst. Nr. 2891. Auktion
1970 und vom 10.- 12 Februar 1971. Der Auktionskatalog in 2 Teilen ist
auch ind der Sammlung enthalten:
DIE KÖNIGLICHE ERNST AUGUST FIDEICOMMISS-BIBLIOTHEK
- KATALOG - 2 TEILE 3440 Nummern. Die Königliche Ernst August
Fiedeicommiss-Bibliothek/ Hannover,. Auktion 174 und 177. 2 Tle. in 2 Bänden.
Hamburg, Hauswedell, 10.- 12 Februar 1971. Kartoniert, 8°; zahlr. Tafelabbildungen.
208, 350 S., + ERGEBNISLISTE. Teil I mit 2050 Nummern, / 2 volumes,
23 October 1813
Verordnung über die Bildung des General-Gouvernements
der heiligen Länder. 320 x 200 mm.
The Generalgouvernement Berg was a pro visional government
from 25th November 1813 to 15th June 1815 after the resolution of
the Grand duchy of Berg instituted by the allies. It covered the area of
the Duchy of Berg till 1806 and Gimborn, Homburg and Wildenburg.
Front page: Leipzig, den 23sten Oktober 1813. Oberstes
Verwaltungs-Departement. K. Freyherr vom Stein.
Heinrich Friedrich Karl Reichsfreiherr vom und
zum Stein ( 1757 – 1831), commonly known as Baron vom Stein, was a Prussian
statesman who introduced the Prussian reforms that paved the way for the
unification of Germany. He promoted the abolition of serfdom, with indemnification
to territorial lords; subjection of the nobles to manorial imposts; and
the establishment of a modern municipal system. After it became known that
he had written a letter in which he criticized Napoleon, Stein was obliged
to resign which he did on 24 November 1808, and retired to the Austrian
Empire, from which he was summoned to the Russian Empire by Tsar Alexander
I in 1812. After the Battle of Leipzig in 1813, Stein became head of the
council for the administration of the re-conquered German countries.
On reverse page: Confirmation of the above by the provisional
governor Justus Gruner, dated 13/25 November 1813
6th June 1815
Staats = und Gelehrten Zeitung des hamburgischen unpartheyischen
Correspondenten Anno 1815 No. 89 (Am Dienstage, den 6. Junii ) 8pp.
230 x 190 mm.
Der Hamburgische Correspondent was the first Hamburg
regular newspaper founded by Hermann Heinrich Hollen in 1712 initially
entitled Holsteinischer Zeitungscorrespondent. From 1721 he issued
this again as the Holsteinischer Correspondent and from 1724 it was called
Hamburgischer Correspondent. It was the mose widely read and important
In this issue one reads about army movements, how the
Austrian emperor travels to join the armies of the allies and how Lord
Castlereagh [British Foreign Secretary, from 1812 he was central to the
management of the coalition that defeated Napoleon and was the principal
British diplomat at the Congress of Vienna ] proposed to pay 5 million
pound sterling to the emperors of Russia and Austria and the king of Prussia
since each of these had mobilised 150.000 men
10th June 1815
Le journal universel No. 17, Samedi, 10 Juin 1815, 4 pages,
folio. Published 8 days before Waterloo
It gives amongst others the names of those on Napoleon's
Some references to this journal:
Le Journal universel connu sous le nom de Moniteur de
Gand, fut l'organe officiel de l'émigration. L'un de ses principaux
rédacteurs fut notamment Chateaubriand qui rédigea un article
dans le numéro 20 sur Waterloo: La Victoire la plus complète
vient d'être remportée sur l'ennemi et l'oppresseur de la
Après avoir quitté Paris le 19 mars à
l'approche de Napoléon, Louis XVIII s'installa le 30 mars à
Gand, alors sous l'influence du tout nouveau royaume des Pays-Bas. Rassemblant
un gouvernement de fidèles, Louis XVIII comptait sur le Journal
universel, journal de quatre pages payé sur la cassette du roi et
publié la première fois le 14 avril, pour contrebalancer
le Moniteur universel redevenu bonapartiste. Ce « moniteur de Gand
19th June 1815
Proclamation des Feldmarschalls Furst Blücher an
die Armee des Niederrheins
Field Marshall Count Blücher’s proclamation to the
army of the Rhine of 19th June 1815
“to be read to every battalion “ You have performed great
things, brave comrades…..
20th June 1815
Armeebericht der Preussischen Armee vom Niederrhein. [
in German ] 260 x 230 mm. 8 pages,
Army notification from general Count von Gneisenau
sent from the head quarters at Merbes-le-Chateu, 20th June 1815 by order
of field marshall Blücher.
On how Napoleon started the battle on 15th June.
Full descriptions of army movements, the battle near
Ligny on 16th June, the march to Tilly. This battle was lost by the Prussians.
The battle of 18th June and gradually the overall victory.
To celebrate the unity between the British and Prussian
nations Blücher ordered this battle to be called the Belle Alliance.
20th June 1815
Buitengewone Nederlandsche Staats courant, 1815, No. 3,
Dinsdag den 20 Junij
The battle raged all day, Buonaparte used all means to
win the hills where the English-Dutch army was positioned. 5 cavalry attacks
were repulsed and a large number of artillery pieces was captured. By the
evening due to the timely arrival of the Prussian army to help the duke
of Wellington, Buonaparte was beaten.Blücher himself shouted “Children
we must pursue them tonight otherwise they will attack again tomorrow”
20th June 1815
Buitengewone Nederlandsche Staats courant, 1815, No. 4,
Dinsdag den 20 Junij
The Prince of Orange has arrived in Brussels, the evening
before around 8 PM he was hit by a bullet in his left arm, but he is in
no danger. The Duke of Wellington has been victorious, the victory is complete.
Both armies are pursuing the enemy. Wellington said that he had never fought
a similar battle before and that the army had been very courageous, 150
pieces of artillery had been captured on his side and 60 by Marshall Blücher.
The people of Brussels were of great help helping the wounded. Marshall
Blücher will soon reach Charleroi.
21st June 2015
Buitengewone Nederlandsche Staats courant, 1815 No. 5,
den 21 Junij,
His Royal Highnes ([the prince of Orange) is feeling better.
The Duke of Wellington arrived in Brussels . The remnants of the enemy
armies have fled in great disorder and have left an astounding number of
artillery pieces and all luggage. They are pursued everywhere. Marshall
Blücher has reported to the King of Prussia that he has also captured
Buonaparte’s field equipage and Jerome’s coach. De French general Van Damme
has been captured by the Prussians near Wavre. Also Count Lohau, commander
of the French reserves, who confirmed that the battle had been totally
21 June 1815
PROCLAMATION . Le Prince Blücher aux braves Belges
/ PROCLAMATIE de Prins Blücher aan de brave Belgen. 420 x 360
Merbes-le-Château, 21st June 1815. Le Maréchal;
Prince De Blücher / De veldmaarschalk Prins Van Blücher.
Blücher thanks the Belgians when his army is
about to leave their country to go into France.
26th June 1815
Buitengewone Gravenhaagsche courant, Maandag den 26 Juny
/ Special issue of this The Hague newspaper of 26th June 1815 , 450 X 250
mm. (partly torn in centre fold)
The newspaper received the for Europe at the time most
important message that BUONAPARTE, desperate about his total defeat,
had left for Paris in civilian clothes where he had been arrested and forced
to resign all his functions
28th June 1815
Buitengewone Nederlandsche Staats courant, Woensdag den
28 Junij Ao. 1815
[special issue of the Dutch government’s gazette of 28
June 1815) 425 x 260 mm.]
Contains a.o. Wellington’s report of 25th June about
reinforcing the Kamerijk garrison and Napoleon’s declaration of 22
June to the French people in which he expresses his regret that not
all of the French were on his side and declares his official abdication
while proclaiming his son as Emperor Napoleon II
1st July 1815
Buitengewone Nederlandsche Staats-Courant, Zaterdag,
den 1 Julij Ao. 1815
Notification that one has reported to the King that HRH
Prince Frederik [ of the Netherlands] has attacked the fortification
Quesnoi and has forced the commander general Despraux to capitulate
The full page of 1st July 1815
6th July 1815
Buitengewone Nederlandsche Staats-Courant, Donderdag,
den 6 Julij
General Fagel reports on 3rd July that Paris has capitulated
and that one of the condtions of the capitulation is that the French
army will retreat behind the Loire.
8th July 1815
Buitengewone Nederlandsche Staats-Courant, Donderdag,
den 8 Julij
Capitulation of Paris now ratified. Before that
the move by the Prussian army to St. Germain and the Seine led to heavy
fighting, Versailles was taken by the Prussians and then re-taken by the
French. On 2nd July the Prussian army took Versailles again and then moved
to Paris immediately. The French fought hard under marshal Davoust
but the sight of Paris encouraged the Prussians greatly . the army corps
under “Ziethen” conquered all positions by bayonet. After the capitulation
the French army had to leave Paris and retreat to the southern shore of
the Loire. On 6th July the armies of Wellington and Blücher occupied
Paris. They were expecting the Russian emperor and the King of Prussia.
Buonaparte had already left for Rochefort with his generals Savary, Bertrand
Some modern views:
Rory Muir’s recent book rightly undermines the harsh image
of the “Iron Duke”: a cold and pitiless martinet in the field, a cynical
reactionary in politics, feared rather than loved by those around him.
One example of his humanity must suffice. As night fell on the battlefield
of Waterloo, one of the greatest victories in history, the duke wept as
he was told of his friend Gordon’s death. “Well, thank God!” he said. “I
don’t know what it is to lose a battle, but certainly nothing can be more
painful than to gain one with the loss of so many of one’s friends.” It
is impossible to imagine Napoleon reacting like this. Despite his notorious
remarks about his soldiery (“the scum of the earth”, etc), he did in fact
look after them better than his contemporaries. Of the 7,687 men wounded
at Waterloo under his command, only 11 per cent had died of their wounds
a year later. Knowing what brutality his men were capable of, Wellington,
in stark contrast to his allies, took care to protect civilians from their
depredations, with the result that he was more popular with the occupied
French than their own rulers. (from: Rory Muir: Wellington: Waterloo
and the Fortunes of Peace, 1814-1852 (Yale U.P. )
Once committed to the battle, withdrawing in the face
of a major hit against the center and then an attack on the flank would
have been a good position for Blücher to be in. Also, with Napoleon
wanting to keep the allied armies separate, this would have, in addition
to possibly not succeeding, put more space between them.
It's hard to ever say for sure what would happen, but,
it seems likely that Blücher would have been decisively routed if
not for the costly failures surrounding the battles. Napoleon wasn't exactly
where he wanted to be, but he was quite close. We can say that the French
were largely in the driver’s seat to this point and even in the immediate
aftermath of the battle. You note later that one might have thought Blücher
was winning until the last half hour, but I think one would have consider
that Napoleon had at least many things that he wanted. Ney wasn't going
to support him, but he did have Blücher alone, d'Erlon's corp on the
way, and the Guard ready to be sent in around 5 pm. (War and Military History