The French general and historian Philippe-Paul, Comte de Segur (1780-1873) served as a member of Napoleon's personal staff during the Russian campaign. He had joined the cavalry in 1800 and had distinguished himself during earlier episodes of the European war; this led to him being chosen for several diplomatic missions. His two-volume account of the invasion of Russia, first published in French in 1824, has been through many editions and has been translated into many languages. It is both a military history and an eyewitness account. This English translation was first published in 1825 and remains immensely valuable to historians' understanding of Napoleon's ultimately disastrous Russian strategy. Volume 1 begins with the reasons behind the decision to invade and includes the Battle of Borodi, in which over seventy thousand people were killed. It concludes on 12 September 1812, two days before Napoleon's army reached Moscow.