The Eighth International Napoleonic Congress was held at the Corinthia Palace Hotel and Spa on the beautiful island of Malta, 12-16 July 2010. This was our first Congress in Malta, but with any luck at all it will not be our last! By all accounts, it was a great success. Much of that success can be traced to the wonderful people of Malta, and especially the work of Frans Sammut of Malta, whose tireless efforts made all the difference.
The Congress attracted scholars from Canada, France, Israel, Malta, Russia, South Africa, Spain and the USA. By all accounts, the presentations were excellent and reflected the depth of scholarship of our Fellows, as well as innovative ways at looking at Napoleonic history, including the use of modern technology.
The program began on Monday, 12 July, with opening remarks by our gracious host, Frans Sammut of Malta. He was followed by Dr. Rafe Blaufarb, Director of the Institute on Napoleon and the French Revolution at the Florida State University, General Henri Paris of France, and J. David Markham, President of the International Napoleonic Society.
After the opening ceremonies, Dr. Rafe Blaufarb chaired a session that included presentations by Frans Sammut (Malta), Isis Wirth (France), Allon Klebanoff (Israel) and Erez Levanon and Eli Witztum (Israel), all speaking on various aspects of Napoleon’s campaign in Egypt and the Holy Land. After a fine lunch, Frans Sammut of Malta chaired a session that include papers on various Napoleonic campaigns from Dennis Potts (USA), General Henri Paris (France) and Olivier Lammens (South Africa). Soon after the conclusion of the day’s presentations, participants got together for an INS sponsored cocktail reception, and then went on to lunch.
On Tuesday, participants took an all-day tour of various Napoleonic and other fabulous sites on Malta. We were greeted by the Mayors of Mdina and of Zebbug (who took us to two extraordinary Band clubs and then gave us a fine book as a souvenir), and later adjourned to dinners in the area.
On Wednesday, the academic portion of the program continued, with Isis Wirth of France chairing the session. We began with two very interesting presentations by Russian scholars Nickolay Promyslov on Napoleon’s withdrawal from Russia and Elena Khonineva discussing recent Napoleonic exhibitions in Russia. This was followed by presentations by María Zozaya (Spain), and Rafe Blaufarb (USA).
After lunch, Olivier Lammens (south Africa) chaired a session that included papers by Nicholas Stark (USA, paper read by Barbara Markham, FINS), Allon Klebanoff (Israel), J. David Markham (USA) and Edna Mueller (Canada), who gave a presentation on the use of Google Maps as a tool to better understand Napoleonic battlefields and campaigns.
That evening, President Markham led a delegation that included Barbara Markham, Rafe Blaufarb, Allon Klebanoff, and Edna Mueller to celebrate the 14 th of July at the home of the French Ambassador to Malta. It was truly a memorable evening!
On Thursday, all participants joined together for a tour of additional interesting sites on Malta. The highlight of the day was a reception by Baron Trapani and his lovely wife at his home, Palazzo Bettina. The Baron’s ancestor received Napoleon when he was in Malta. We also had a reception at the Auberg D’Italie sponsored by the Ministry of Tourism, where we saw the room where Napoleon stayed while on Malta, and a delightful lunch at Sotto Vento. Our sincere thanks go to Frans Sammut for all the work he did in organizing the two tours, and also to Jenny Adams and Marie Louise Buttigieg of Special Delivery Travel for their fine assistance as well.
The Congress concluded with a wonderful farewell cocktail party and gala dinner sponsored by the INS and held in the dining hall of the Corinthia Palace Hotel. Our thanks go also to that hotel, surely one of the finest we will ever have for a Congress. At the dinner, President Markham announced that all presenters at the Congress who were not already Fellows of the INS would be awarded that honor.
Friday was a free day, and many of the participants came together for one final dinner together overlooking the water, a night never to be forgotten.
Many participants from around the world have said that this Congress was a great success. And we are pleased to announce that next year’s Congress will most likely be in Holland. Please check back for further information in the very near future.