August Fournier

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August Fournier

August (in) Oktavian Fournier (born June 19, 1850 in Vienna ; † May 18, 1920 there ) was an Austrian historian and politician.


August Fournier, whose father came from Braunseifen in Moravia , spent his childhood in Fünfkirchen ( Hungary ) and Vienna . After studying history at the University of Vienna and obtaining a doctorate as a Dr. phil. (1872) he undertook numerous research trips all over Europe - u. a. to Paris , Berlin , Marburg , Fulda and Munich . In 1885 he began his most important work " Napoleon I - A Biography ". In 1874 Fournier became a registrar in the archives of the Ministry of the Interior and later became its head. In 1877, in the estate files of the old court chancellery, he came across the secret treaty on mutual succession in the House of Habsburg . In 1883 he was appointed full professor of modern history at the German Karl Ferdinand University , where he also worked politically. In 1891 he moved to the Reichsrat (Austria) as a member of the German Progressive Party of the "United German Left" and in 1892 to the Bohemian Landtag . He represented the Tetschen-Bodenbach district .

He returned to Vienna in 1900. From 1903 to 1920 he taught general history of modern times at the University of Vienna as full professor . In 1909 he became a corresponding member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences . Fournier's best-known student is the historian Alfred Francis Přibram .

August Fournier's three-volume biography on Napoléon Bonaparte (a total of four German-language editions, each foreign-language editions published in New York City , London , Paris and Budapest ) is now considered a standard scientific work. It is by far the most important work in Napoleon research from an Austrian perspective. Volker Ullrich said in the introduction to his short biography of Napoleon from 2004 that it was "very legible and written close to the source" and "still the best German-language contribution to Napoleon literature". A large-scale work on the Congress of Vienna remained unfinished. Countless speeches testify to his parliamentary work - Fournier was considered a brilliant speaker. He published a large number of monographs , treatises and writings on the history of Austrian foreign policy and, together with the writer Dr. Anton Bettelheim published the 22-volume New Austrian Biography from 1815 . He is considered the most important historian of the end of the Habsburg era. Fourniergasse in Lainz in Vienna's 13th district ( Hietzing ) is named after August Fournier .

Fournier was married to Dora Gabillon , the youngest daughter from the second marriage of the castle actor Ludwig Gabillon . Their daughter is the psychologist Christine Olden . His grave is in the Vienna Central Cemetery .


  • An official sales trip to Italy in 1754. A contribution to the history of Austrian commercial politics . Vienna 1888.
  • The Châtillon Congress. The politics of the war of 1814; a historical study . Tempsky, Vienna 1900.
  • Dahlmann-Waitz. Source studies of German history . 8th edition. Köhler, Leipzig 1912 (together with Ernst Baasch , Friedrich Koepp and others).
  • A trip to the North Cape . Tempsky, Prague 1884.
  • The secret police at the Congress of Vienna. A selection from their papers . Tempsky, Vienna 1913.
  • Gentz and Cobenzl . History of Austrian diplomacy in the years 1801-1805; according to new sources . Braumüller, Vienna 1880.
  • Gentz ​​and Wessenberg . Letters from the first to the second . Braumüller, Vienna 1907.
  • Gerard van Swieten as censor. According to archival sources . Vienna 1877.
  • Goethe and Napoleon . Lecture given at the Goethe Association in Vienna on March 21, 1896 . Publishing house of the Vienna Goethe Association Vienna 1896.
  • Principles and goals of the German progressive party. Program speech . Friedrich Jasper publishing house, Vienna 1907.
  • Trade and traffic in Hungary and Poland around the middle of the 18th century. A contribution to the history of Austrian commercial politics . Gerold in Komm., Vienna 1887.
  • Today and a hundred years ago . Hölzel, Vienna 1914.
  • Historical studies and sketches . Freytag, Leipzig 1885–1912 (3 vol.)
  • Fight for world domination . Freytag, Leipzig 1888.
  • Marie-Louise et la chute de Napoléon. Contribution à la biography de Marie-Louise . Daupeley governor, Nogent-le-Rotrou 1903.
  • Napoleon I. A biography . Phaidon-Verlag, Essen 1996, ISBN 3-88851-186-0 (reprint of the Vienna 1922 edition)
  • New Austrian biography 1815-1918 . Kraus Reprint, Nendeln / Liechtenstein 1970 ff (together with Anton Bettelheim , reprint of the Vienna edition 1923–1959)
  • Austria and Prussia in the 19th century. A lecture . Braumüller, Vienna 1907.
  • Austria-Hungary's new building under Emperor Franz Joseph I. A historical sketch . Ullstein, Berlin 1917.
  • Fall and end . Freytag, Leipzig 1888.
  • Diaries of Friedrich von Gentz. 1829-1831 . Amalthea-Verlag, Zurich 1920.
  • On the conception and method of state history. Habilitation lecture given at the University of Vienna on February 1, 1875 . Gerold in Komm.Vienna 1875.
  • How we came to Bosnia. A historical study . Reisser, Vienna 1909.
  • For defense. A supplement to the "Austrian history lies" . Tempsky, Vienna 1897.
  • On the textual criticism of the correspondence of Napoleon I Gerold in Komm., Vienna 1903.


  • Heinz Badner: August Fournier. A monograph . Dissertation, University of Vienna 1952.
  • Fournier August. In: Austrian Biographical Lexicon 1815–1950 (ÖBL). Volume 1, Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Vienna 1957, p. 340.
  • Felix Czeike : Historical Lexicon Vienna . 2nd volume. Kremer & Scheriau, Vienna 1993, ISBN 3-218-00740-2
  • German Biographical Yearbook (1917-20), 527 ff.
  • Wolfgang Weber: Biographical lexicon for historical studies in Germany, Austria and Switzerland . Lang, Frankfurt / M. 1987, ISBN 3-8204-1051-1 , p. 154
  • Hans Reuter: August Fournier and its importance for the historiography of the Napoleonic age . Reuter publishing house, Münster 1965.

Web links

Wikisource: August Fournier  - Sources and full texts

Individual evidence

  1. Rudolf Schránil , Josef Hušák (Ed.): The Diet of the kingdom Bohemia 1861-1911: Personal . Prague 1911, p. 191.