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Waterloo Changed The World, But For Better Or Worse?

Battle of Waterloo re-enactors walk near the Lion's Mound during a historical walk for journalists in Braine-l'Alleud, near Waterloo, Belgium. On Wednesday, June 17, 2015, four days of commemoration will begin on the historic battlefield, with the re-opening of Hougoumont farm and a reconstruction of the battle with more than 5,000 re-enactors. (Geert Vanden Wijngaert/AP)
Battle of Waterloo re-enactors walk near the Lion's Mound during a historical walk for journalists in Braine-l'Alleud, near Waterloo, Belgium. On Wednesday, June 17, 2015, four days of commemoration will begin on the historic battlefield, with the re-opening of Hougoumont farm and a reconstruction of the battle with more than 5,000 re-enactors. (Geert Vanden Wijngaert/AP)

Today is the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo, which brought down Napoleon Bonaparte for good.

But even with 200 years perspective, historians disagree about Napoleon’s legacy. Some see him as a tyrant determined to build an empire at all costs. Others give him credit for introducing ideals such as public education and meritocracy that form the basis of modern society.

Here & Now‘s Peter O’Dowd talks with historian and author Andrew Roberts about Napoleon’s complicated legacy.

Guest

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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