The Army of the Kingdom of Italy, 1805-1814

Uniforms, Organization, Campaigns

Stephen Ede-Borrett

Publication date:
June 2019
Publisher :
Helion and Company
Series :
Reason to Revolution
Illustration :
16 colour plates, 60 b/w ills, drawings & photos
No associated books available.


Often overlooked is the fact that, in addition to being Emperor of the French, Napoleon was also King of Italy. As such he was the first man to hold such a title since antiquity, albeit that the Kingdom was ruled by Eugene de Beauharnais as Viceroy. There seems little doubt that had Napoleon remained in power for a few more years then the Kingdom's Army would have been the cornerstone of a unified Italian State a half-century before Garibaldi.

The Kingdom may only have comprised about a third of the Italian peninsula, but it was inevitably a major contributor of manpower to the Grande Armée. Despite this, and the continuing popularity of the study of Napoleonic armies and uniforms, there has not previously been a full-length study of the appearance of this Army nor any comparable synopsis of its service.

The uniforms of the Kingdom's Army were heavily influenced by those of Napoleonic France but there was, in addition, enough ‘Italian flair' to make them distinctive and the Army's service record was the equal to that of any of France's allies and satellites, and considerably better than most.