Napoleon’s Image in Lolstoy’s War and Peace: Linguistic and Historical Aspects

Oksana Vyacheslavovna Zakirova & Zemfira Vilenovna Gallyamova

Kazan Federal University, Tatarstan, 423600, Elabuga, Kazanskaya St., 89. Email:

 Volume 9, Number 4, 2017 I Full Text PDF

DOI: 10.21659/rupkatha.v9n4.15

Received September 14, 2017; Revised November 18, 2017; Accepted November 30, 2017; Published December 25, 2017.


The article presents a critical analysis of an image of a historical personality, Napoleon Bonaparte depicted in Tolstoy’s War and Peace. The authors study the linguistic and historical description of Napoleon as a minor but rather important character in the novel War and Peace. The authors focus on the role of qualitative adjectives in the creation of Napoleon’s image as a literary character. A historical commentary on the public activity of the French emperor is also presented. The image of Napoleon gathered through linguistic analysis is compared with the information from historical sources. It comes to the conclusion that the image of Napoleon Bonaparte in the novel is as close to reality as possible, despite the fact that in the work Tolstoy has a pronounced negative attitude towards Napoleon as a historical personality.

Keywords: literary character’s image, historical personality, linguistic means of image explication.