Battle of Leipzig

Battle of Leipzig

In the War of the Sixth Coalition, a coalition of the Austrian Empire, the Kingdom of Prussia, the Russian Empire, the United Kingdom, the Kingdom of Portugal, Sweden, Spain and a number of German States finally defeated France and drove Napoleon into exile on Elba. After the disastrous French invasion of Russia, the continental powers joined Russia, the UK, Portugal and the rebels in Spain. With their armies reorganized, they drove Napoleon out of Germany in 1813 and invaded France in 1814, forcing Napoleon to abdicate and restoring the Bourbons.

Two-and-a-half million troops fought in the conflict and the total dead amounted to as many as two million, including the casualties of the 1812 Russian campaign (some estimates suggest that over a million died in Russia alone). The War of the Sixth Coalition included the battles of Lützen, Bautzen, Dresden and the epic Battle of Leipzig (also known as the Battle of Nations), which was the largest battle of the Napoleonic Wars, and, indeed, the largest in Western history before the First World War. Ultimately, Napoleon's earlier setbacks in Russia and Germany proved to be the seeds of his undoing, and the Allies occupied Paris, forcing his abdication.

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