ITALY: Army of the Po

"You are badly fed and all but naked. . . . Before you are great cities and rich provinces; there we shall find honor, glory and riches." Thus spoke young General Bonaparte to 30,000 miserable French troops at Nice one day in March 1796. The shoeless Army with half-starved horses drawing the scant artillery marched past the Alps, through Piedmont, and onto the lush plains of Lombardy. An unbroken series of victories—Lodi, Arcola, Rivoli—and Northern Italy was Napoleon's first conquest.

Napoleon was not the first invader to come that way. Hannibal struck...

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