Two hundred years ago, Britain and France were locked in a brutal struggle for supremacy. Following Nelson's victory over the French and the Spanish at Trafalgar in October 1805, British maritime hegemony was secured. Napoleon's commitment to war on the Continent resulted in victory at Austerlitz but meant the end to any challenge to British imperial predominance. The struggle for the empire also involved military campaigns and political intrigue around the globe. The British were locked in a bitter warfare with the Marathas in India, while in Egypt the rise to power of Muhammad Ali would secure the country's freedom from European rule. Russia, too, was expanding its global reach, as Nikolai Rezanov sailed from the seas around Japan on the first Russian round-the-world voyage. Mike Rapport uses original research and first-hand reports from military officers, sailors and diplomats to bring to life a period that marked the beginning of the world as we know it today.
Mike Rapport graduated from the Universities of Edinburgh and Bristol. He lectures in Modern History at the University of Stirling and is the Reviews Editor of the journal, French History. He is the author of Nationality and Citizenship in Revolutionary France: The Treatment of Foreigners 1789-1799 (OUP,2000).