STUDY GUIDE FOR THE
LATE 19th CENTURY
THE AGE OF NATION STATES
The Revolutions of 1848 left a defeat for both liberalism and nationalism. Yet within 25 years many of their goals stood accomplished. Italy and Germany were constitutional monarchies, the Hapsburg emperor (Franz Joseph) had accepted a constitution, the Magyars achieved liberities, Russian serfs had been emancipated, France was a republic and Liberalism and democracy grew in England. Most of these events occurred under the leadership of conservative statesmen.
THE CRIMEAN WAR (1854-1856)
When Russia wanted to extend its control over the Ottoman provinces of Moldavia and Walachia (now Romania) she angered the Turks who declared war in the fall of 1853. This forced Britain and France (acting on the Concert of Europe principle) to declare war on Russia. Russia Nicholas I of Russia was bitter because Austria and Prussia chose to remain neutral. The war was ineptly waged on all sides and in 1855, after a long seige, Sevastopol fell.
The war shattered the image of an invinsible Russia and the concert of Europe as well. The war introduced the International Red Cross (Florence Nightengale) and battlefield journalism (William Russell , a writer, and Roger Fenton, a photographer).
THE SECOND INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION 1870-1914
The results of the Second Indstrial Revolution pale when compared to that of the First Industrial Revolution. The new revolution was one of technology, particularly in the fields of metals chemicals and electricity, all of which all resulted in new products. Larger populations and improving standards of living produced greater demand which in turn increased the volume of production. The need for increased production called forth significant reorganization to provide a freer supply of capital and to ensure a more efficient labor force
Four men stand out in the effort to unify Italy (which had not be united since Roman times). Giuseppe Mazzini (a member of the Carbonari) became the most important nationalistic leader in Europe. In 1831 he founded the Young Italy Society for driving the Austrians out of Italy and creating a republic. With the aid of Giuseppe Garibaldi he lead insurrections throughout southern Italy (rural territory). The third man was Camillo Cavour the prime minister of Piedmont who used force of arms, tied to secret diplomacy, to unite Italy under the King of Sardinia-Piedmont, Victor Emmanuel. Cavour worked for free trade, railroad construction, credit expansion and agricultural improvement. Cavour allied with Napoleon III (Treaty of Plombieres) to defeat Austria. After victories at Solferino and Magenta Napoleon feared the growing power of Sardinia, and a weakening of France due to his losses, and thus signed the Treaty of Villafranca with Austria to with draw France from the hostilities. Austria, facing internal disputes within her empire scaled back her efforts agai nst the Italians and Cavour, after working out an agreement with Garibaldi completed the unification of Italy under the leadership of Victor Emanuel of Sardinia-Piedmont.
By 1870 Italy was united accept for Trent and Trieste. Rome remained in French hands until the Franco-Prussian war forced the withdrawal of French troops in 1879. When the troops withdrew from Rome the capital was moved there from Florence. The papacy remained confined to the Vatican until the Lateran Acord of 1929.
UNIFICATION OF GERMANY
The unification of Germany was the single most important political event in Europe between 1848 and 1914. Because it transformed the balance of:
3. international power
Otto von Bismarck (1815-1898) came from Junker stock. He opposed parliamentary government but not a constitution. He was a fervent patriot. His political direction can be surmised from his quote: "The great questions of the day will not be decided by speeches and majority decisions [ that was the error of 1848-49 ] but by blood and iron." Bismarck fought three wars to unify Germany.
THE DANISH WAR - 1864
Bismarck believed in a small Germany solution to unification--that is a Germany without Austria. When the Danes moved to annex the territories of Schleswig and Holstein in 1863 the smaller German states proposed an all German war to halt the process. Bismarck arranged for Prussia and Austria to take action and Denmark was defeated in a short war. The joint ruling of the two lands (Austria took Holstein) gave Bismarck the chance to prod Austria into war with Prussia)
THE AUSTRO - PRUSSIAN WAR - 1866
There had been constant tension between Austria and Prussia. Bismarck order the Prussians to be a rude to Austria as necessary. When Austria complained to the Confederation and prepared to move troops into the area Bismarck proved that it broke terms of the 1864 alliance.
The "Seven Weeks War" of 1866 lead to the defeat of Austria at Koniggratz. The Treaty of Prague which followed was lenient to Austria. She lost no territory other than Venetia which was given to Napoleon III who in turn gave it to Italy since Austria had actually defeated Italian forces during the course of the war and would not allow an direct transaction.
The Prussian victory permanently removed the Hapsburgs from German politics and left Prussia as the only major power in the German Confederation.
FRANCO - PRUSSIAN WAR - 1870-71
In 1868 a revolution led by Spanish conservatives deposed the Bourbon Queen Isabella II. The Spanish replaced her with Prince Leopold of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, a cousin of William I of Prussia.
Bismarck encouraged this because he knew that the French would not stand for a Prussian on the throne of Spain since they would be surrounded on two sides by the Prussians. France sent Count Benedetti to consult with William who was on vacation at Bad Ems. On July 13 Benedetti was instructed to ask William for assurances that he would tolerate no further candidacy for Leopold. To this the king refused. He then sent a telegram to Bismarck telling him of the substance of the conversation. This is the telegram that Bismarck revised (the Ems Dispatch) which made it appear that William had insulted the French. The idea was to goad the French to war.
On September 1 at the Battle of the Sedan the Prussians defeated the French and captured Emperor Napoleon III. Paris was besieged and fell on January 28 ,1871. Ten days earlier at the Palace of Versailles (Hall of Mirrors) the German empire had been declared. From the peace settlement Germany received the territory of Alsace (coal) and part of Lorraine.
The two nations most affected by the German and Italian unification were France and Austria. The emergence of the new states revealed the weakness of both France and the Hapsburg Empire. In the wake France turned Republican (again) and Austria allowed dualism in her monarchy.
THE DREYFUS AFFAIR
In 1894 an army court martial convicted Captain Alfred Dreyfus, a Jewish officer, of conveying secret information to the Germans, and he was sentenced to imprisonment in the penal colony at Devil's Island. doubt remained concerning his guilt and by 1896 it had been proven the Ferdinand Esterhazy was the real culprit. Tried, he was acquited. Those who had been against Dreyfus were openly anti-Semitic.
Following the upheavals brought by the revolutions of 1848, the Austrian government reestablished the traditional system of centralized rule for the multinational empire, concentrating authority in the hands of German-speaking officials loyal to the Hapsburgs.
Austria's defeat by Piedmont and France in 1859 weakened the prestige of the Austrian government. In an effort to regain popular support, Emperor Francis Joseph (r.1848-1916) initiated an experiment in decentralization. The October Diploma of 1860 expanded the authority of the aristocratic assemblies in Hungary, Bohemia, and other provinces. The Magyars of Hungary refused to participate in the new system.
The Compromise of 1867: Dual Monarchy
When the Prussians defeated Austria in the Seven Weeks' War in the Magyars, led by Francis Deak and Julius Andrassy increased their demands against the Hapsburgs. Emperor Franz Joseph agreed to the Compromise of 1867 which created the Dual Monarchy of Austria-Hungary.
Austria was technically a constitutional monarchy however, Franz Joseph retained considerable authority. He could dissolve the parliament at will and had the power to legislate by decree when the parliament was not in session. It would not be until 1907 that Austria would develop a more democratic franchise with universal manhood suffrage being realized along with the direct election of the members of the lower house of the Reichsrat.
As king of Hungary, Franz Joseph had nearly no authority. The Magyar aristocracy dominated both houses of the Hungarian parliament and made few concessions either to the Magyar peasants or the minority nationalities. The Magyars pursued a policy of Magyarization seeking to force the minority nationalities to adopt the Magyar language and culture. The effect of Magyarization was the opposite of what was intended, since the minority nationalities--the Slovaks, Rumanians, and Slavs-reacted to this rule of the Magyars by becoming ever more conscious of their own nationality and more determined to gain rights of self-government (Pan-Slavism).