Photos of Napoleon's veterans in their own uniforms - taken circa 1858


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Note that the vast majority are ("did you ever see a dead.......") cavalrymen!   Don't be in the infantry if you want a long life!

Having said that, one of the two infantrymen, the sergeant of the Grenadiers of the Guard looks as tough as old rope and also looks as if he could march on parade then and there, no problem.   Not surprising since his years of service ('09 -'15) take in Russia which weeded out anyone of a less than stellar constitution.

And no artillerymen?   Perhaps inhaling all that smoke from the barrages of artillery did in their lungs?   Or perhaps they had too many injuries from pushing around heavy guns?

Actually all of them look pretty robust for men in their 70's and 80's in the mid nineteenth century (pre-antiobiotics, pre-anesthesia, etc. etc.).   I guess a few years campaigning with the Emperor was the equivalent of a lifetime at the gym !!


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