Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Massena, Andre (1758-1817), a celebrated French general, was born of Jewish parentage at Nice, and served for four years in the Sardinian army. In 1792 he joined "the French army as a volunteer, and the next year was elected colonel, and made general of division. He won many victories in Italy, the principal being that of Loano (1795), and then went to Switzerland, where he performed many brilliant exploits. He returned to Paris, and was a member of the Corps Legislatif in 1803, Marshal in 1804, when he received the Grand Eagle of the Legion. Napoleon sent him to Italy to put Joseph on the Neapolitan throne, and he then joined Napoleon in Poland, where his services gained for him the Dukedom of Rivoli, and after Eckmiihl and Wagram he was made Prince of Essling. He was then sent to Spain, where his genius had to give way before that of Wellington, though Massena himself held that his disasters were brought about by the disobedience of Ney and others. After this campaign he was practically relegated to obscurity.