How did Great Britain combat Napoleon Bonaparte's naval blackade?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I assume that you are talking about the policy of Napoleon that is known as the "Continental System" or the "Continental Blockade."  Napoleon did not have the naval resources to mount a naval blockade (where his ships would intercept British ships).  Instead, he tried to enforce the blocakde by ground-based efforts.  In other words, he tried to get the governments of the various continental countries to prevent trade with Britain from happening.

Unfortunately for Napoleon, the continental countries benefitted from trade with Britain.  For this reason, they were not all that energetic about trying to enforce the blockade.  This meant that smugglers were able to carry goods to and from Britain.  The blockade did hurt Britain to some extent, but it was ultimately unsuccessful.

swimma-logan | Student
They did so by spliting Villeneuve's formation to capture more than two thirds of his fleet.
By having a squadron stationed near the mouth of the bay. If and when the enemy decided to break out...they met the English squadron.
They encouraged the smuggling of goods to Europe and enjoyed the new wealth and economy of the UK.
Smugglers took over that job. Napoleon's order to the Empire to boycott UK goods and ships was simply unenforceable. On 16 May 1806, England passed her Orders in Council, declaring the ports and rivers from Brest to the Elbe in a state of etc

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