The uniforms and insignia of the prestigious elite soldiers who guarded Bonaparte himself The guide and guard units, formed out of the necessities of war and in close contact with the general staff (as escorts, guards and messengers) quickly became an object of attention for the generals, as they were emblematic of the military prestige of their leaders and represented a veritable praetorian guard. The highest in perfection were those surrounding Bonaparte, with Bessieres at the head, one of the core components of the future Imperial Guard. The guards would be present in almost all the armies of the Republic, from the Consulat and the Empire, and yet today they are for the most part completely forgotten. They served some of the most prestigious leaders, the Emperor being at the top. Anywhere the Republic, and then the Empire, would stake their tricolor flags, the guards would be there. Volume Six in the Officers and Soldiers series strives to reconcile the injustice made toward these elite soldiers.