Claude Victor

Marshal  Claude VictorFrench Marshal
Duc de Bellune

Claude Victor began his military career in the artillery and, not surprisingly, became known to Napoleon Bonaparte during the siege of Toulon.

His abilities as a leader became obvious fairly quickly and by the age of 27 was a general of brigade. Six years later he was a general of division and, at Marengo in 1800, Victor was one of Bonaparte's chief subordinates.

He earned his marshal's baton at Friedland in 1807 and was made a duke the following year.

Sent to Spain, Victor had some successes - defeating Spanish troops at Espinosa and Medillin - but lost the battles of Talavera and Barrossa.

During the disastrous Russian campaign the few remaining French survivors owed their lives, in very large part, to Victor's fighting skills at Beresina which kept the last line of escape open.

He performed well at Dresden and Leipzig, but was criticised for his leadership before Montereau and released from duty. Refusing to accept the order, he said he would fight with the troops and won a reprieve from the loyalty-conscious Bonaparte who gave him an Imperial Guard command.

Agreeing to serve the Bourbons upon their restoration, Victor did not stray from that pledge and did not rejoin his emperor during the 100 Days' Campaign.

True to his own pledges, Victor found it hard to side with senior officers who had switched from Bonaparte, to the Bourbons and back to Bonaparte.

He led an investigation into those who had sided with Bonaparte during the Waterloo Campaign and voted for Marshal Ney's death.


Napoleon Bonaparte
Career Portraits
Quotes Family
Loves Letters
Plots Murdered?
His will Places
Era of Napoleon
Powers Opponents
Coalitions Allies
People Timelines
Key sites Shrapnel
Campaigns Battles
Armies Generals
Marshals Winners
Glossary Medical
Weapons 1812 War
Uniforms Battlefields
War at Sea
Naval War Heroes
Artworks Signals
Nelson Trafalgar
Key Maps Peninsula
Animated 1796/1800
1809 Russia
French Revolution
Revolution Guillotine
Posters People
Art, Film, Games
Education Goya
Sharpe Hornblower
Books Movies
DVDs Music
Wargames Images
Cartoons Caricatures
About Us Sources
Awards Sitemap
Links Militaria
Miniatures Reenactors
Forum Quizzes
Home Waterloo Diorama
Copyright Richard Moore 1999-2017 | Privacy Policy | Contact Us