About The Project

In May 1814, following a series of military defeats and his eventual abdication, Napoleon was exiled to the isle of Elba off the west coast of Italy between Tuscany and Corsica. Less than ten months later, he arrived back in France with a contingent of some 6-700 men. He offered himself as a popular hero: one who could, as Balzac later put it, ‘gain an empire simply by showing his hat! ’ As he marched North, opposition melted away and the armies sent to stop him switched their allegiance to support him – thereby largely fulfilling his ambition to return to power without firing a shot. Just two weeks later, Napoleon was in Paris, and Louis XVIII, the restored Bourbon king, was in exile. By July 1815, it was all over: Napoleon was in British hands on his way to his final exile. This website will illustrate and explain the significance of these tumultuous days by tracking events on a daily basis, from Napoleon’s flotilla setting sail from Elba’s Portoferráio, to his surrender on the British ship Bellerophon: each day, an object will be released, with a short explanation of what it can tells us about the ‘100 Days’.

The name given to this period – the ‘100 Days’ – is not quite exact! It was 98 days from Napoleon’s arrival in Paris on March 17 1815 to his abdication and departure on 25 June 1815; and Louis XVIII left Paris on 19 March 1815 and arrived back on 8 July 1815, 112 days later. But history is never as tidy as the sound-bites by which we represent it, and that is one of the points that we have tried to communicate with this website, by showing the variety of consequences of and reactions to Napoleon’s return and defeat for people across Europe and within the wider Atlantic and Mediterranean worlds.

Editorial Team

Katherine Hambridge


Mark Philp


Katherine Astbury


Tim Clayton


Contributors & Acknowledgements

  • Sean Allan | Stacie Allan | Gareth Atkins | Karen Attar | Simon Bainbridge | Charles Beiruti | David Bell | Theo Bruton | Fabio Camilletti | Marcelo Caruso | Peter Clark | Joseph Clarke | Tim Clayton | Peter Cochran | Mary-Ann Constantine | Devon Cox | Malcolm Crook | Michael Crumplin | Geoff Cubitt | Jarek Czubaty | Emilie Delivré | Bill Doyle | Michael Drolet | Elodie Duché | John Dunne | Yann-Arzel Durelle-Marc | Philip Dwyer | Gonzague Espinosa-Dassonneville |
    Alexei Evstratov | Martin Fitzpatrick | Ben Fleuss | Alan Forrest | Jordan Girardin | Allison Goudie | James Grande | Sarah Gray | Jonathan Hicks | Peter Hicks | Peter Hill | James Hodkinson | Marguerite Hughes | Leighton James | Rachel Jacobs | Lotte Jensen | Oskar Cox Jensen | Marion Joassin | Annie Jourdan | Gérard Lafleur | Philip Mansel | Ewan McGowan | Alberto Milano | John Moores | Renaud Morieux | Sheila O’Connell | Patrick O’Donovan | Walter Bruyere Ostells | Nicola Pickering | Phillippa Plock | Chantal Prevot | Munro Price | Neil Ramsey | Graciela Iglesias Rogers | Diego Saglia | Philip Shaw | Michael Sibalis | Brendan Simms | Clare Siviter | Thomas Stammers | David Taylor | Claire Trévien | Cyril Triolaire | Jenny Uglow | Susan Valladeres | Jordi Roca Vernet | Brian Vick | Benjamin Walton | Emmanuel de Waresquiel | Lady Jane Wellesley | Joachim Whaley

We are exceedingly grateful to the contributors, archives, museums and libraries that have made this online exhibition possible. Individual acknowledgements appear on each object page.

Many of the images on this website are copyrighted and reproduced here only by permission and for the sole and exclusive use on this site for the length of the exhibition. The texts on this website, however, are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commerical license. This means that you are free to make use of the material in non-commercial ways without seeking permission, but you must cite the project as the source of the material.

Please cite the website as follows: The Last Stand: Napoleon's 100 days in 100 objects, ed. Katherine Astbury, Katherine Hambridge and Mark Philp (Warwick Digital Humanities 2015), http://www.100days.eu 

References to the exhibition should be cited by contributor, date and title (for example, Katherine Astbury, 26 February 1815, Napoleon's Departure from Elba); weekly summaries should be cited under the appropriate heading and name. 

If you make substantial use of the materials in any form we would appreciate hearing about it at 100days@warwick.ac.uk.