N & E
Napoléon & Empire

Grand Officers

The Grand Officers of the Empire included Marshals, Inspectors General and Colonels General. They had the right to be referred to as "Your Excellence".

Marshals

The title of Marshal was a civilian honour, not a military one. Marshals occupied the fifth position in the imperial hierarchy behind the Emperor and the Empress, the imperial family, Grand Dignitaries and ministers.

Theoretically, the number of Marshals should not exceed sixteen at any one time. The rule was systematically enforced. Lannes died in 1809. Berthier, Murat and Jourdan abandoned their title in the same year and were followed one year later by Bernadotte. Bessières and Poniatowski disappeared in 1813.

Inspectors General

There were seven Inspectors General: three generals plus two (it later became four) admirals.

First Inspector General of the Artillery

First Inspector General of the Engineers

First Inspector General of Police

Inspector General of the Ocean Coast

Inspector General of the Mediterranean Coast

Inspector General of the Coast of the Ligurian Sea

Inspector General of the North Coast

Colonels General

There were nine Colonels General.

The Colonel General of the Swiss had no official function as this corps disappeared with the monarchy. The four Colonels General of the Imperial Guard, in contrast, had important duties. They were charged with the organization and administration of the Guard. In principle, the position changed hands every three months, but Bessières was most often in the role.

Colonel General of the Swiss

Colonel General of the Light Cavalry

Colonel General of the Dragoons

Colonel General of the Hussars

Colonel General of Cuirassiers

Colonel General of the Cavalry of the Guard

Colonel General of the Foot Grenadiers of the Guard

Colonel General of the Light Infantry of the Guard

Colonel General of the Artillery and the Marines of the Guard

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