L'Armée du Nord
(The Army of the North) was the force commanded by Napoleon Bonaparte
during the Waterloo Campaign
in 1815. At its height, (including reserves,) it numbered 130,000 strong and consisted of many veterans from previous campaigns. In terms of quality it was the best army Napoleon had commanded since 1812 when he had led his Grande Armée
(Grand Army) to disaster in Russia
. It also fielded proportionally more artillery
(344 pieces) and significantly more cavalry
, than had French armies in the campaigns of 1813 and 1814. Its left and right wings (Aile Gauche
and Aile Droite
) were under the independent command of Marshals Ney
respectively, when Napoleon himself was not present to direct them.
The Armée du Nord is often mistakenly regarded as separate from Armée de la Réserve (Reserve Army), which it fought beside during the 1815 campaign. In fact the Armée de la Réserve was simply a large corps of the Armée du Nord that Napoleon placed directly under his command.
For more detailed organizational details on the Armée du Nord, see Order of Battle of the Waterloo Campaign.