- Wagram, Battle of
- (1809)The decisive battle of Napoleon Bonaparte ’s campaign of 1809 against Austria. Wagram was a costly, slogging match fought only days after the French emperor’s first defeat at Aspern-Essling. The French had already captured Vienna on May 13, but the main Austrian army under Archduke Charles remained concentrated on the north bank of the Danube. After Napoleon crossed the river, on July 5 Charles attempted to turn the French left in an effort to prevent him from withdrawing back across the Danube. After the first day’s indecisive fighting, on the second day Napoleon tried to envelop the Austrian left, while Charles attempted to do the same to his opponent. Charles made little progress, but the French gained ground against staunch resistance and determined counterattacks. After massing artillery against the Austrian center, Napoleon unleashed a massive infantry attack and drove in Charles’s center. The Austrians withdrew in good order, with losses of more than 60,000 casualties; the French lost about 40,000.See also <
>; < >.FURTHER READING:Castle, Ian. Aspern and Wagram 1809: Mighty Clash of Empires. Oxford: Osprey Publishing, 1994;Chandler, David. The Campaigns of Napoleon. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1995;Hourtoulle, F. G. Wagram: At the Heyday of the Empire. Paris: Histoire and Collections, 2002;Lapouge, Gilles. The Battle of Wagram. London: Hutchinson, 1988;Rothenberg, Gunther. The Emperor ’ s Last Victory: Napoleon and the Battle of Wagram. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 2004.GREGORY FREMONT-BARNES
Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.