The Spanish Ulcer: A History of the Peninsular War

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By July 1807, following his spectacular victories over Austria, Prussia and Russia, Napoleon dominated most of Europe. The only significant gap in his continental system was the Iberian Peninsula. He therefore begun a series of diplomatic and military moves aimed at forcing Spain and Portugal to toe the line, leading to a popular uprising against the French and the outbreak of war in May 1808. Napoleon considered the war in the Peninsula, which he ruefully called 'The Spanish Ulcer', so insignificant that he rarely ...

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