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Session #18 - The Congress of Vienna and the Reconstruction of Europe

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Piotr Wrobel

November 8 , 2012 THE CONGRESS OF VIENNA AND RECONSTRUCTION OF EUROPE  During the expedition against Russia, Prussia and Austria had sent troops in support of N.  But, once the N. had been defeated both Prussia and Austria signed alliances with Russia  A new international European system – the Congress of Vienna (taking two years)  The Baltic Empire was out of the consort of Europe  Napoleon was sent to the Isle of Alba but he escaped and returned to France but after Waterloo he was exiled to St. Helen where he died (mid-1820s)  A final treaty was signed in June 1815 – Vienna France  It was impossible to return to the past map of Europe – the pre-revolutionary system, although some tried  France was now ruled by ultra-royalists who tried to purge all ideas of Napoleon, but this did not really work  Prussia, Russia and Austria treated France quite well (as a victim of N. as well)  Louis XVIII was replaced by his brother Charles who was even more reactionary ~ In March 1830 – there was a 2 revolution in Paris ~ Louis Philippe became a bourgeois king The Congress of Vienna  Representatives from Russia, Prussia, Austria, and Great Britain although France and Spain were there as well  Alexander I, Francis I (emperor of Austria) were there  Even though they were allies, there would still be conflicts  Only England assumed a typical British position during the 19 c. – it did not want to have any territories on continent (on the colonies instead) and wanted to maintain a balance of power  The most aggressive participants were Russia, Prussia, and Austria  Russia wanted to take whatever was possible, Prussia wanted to punish the other allies of Napoleon, Austria wanted to regain all the territories it had lost  This was of course impossible  Two great controversies: 1. Russia wanted to take the former Duchy of Warsaw, territories in the Balkans – from the Austrian point of view, this was very dangerous November 8 , 2012 2. Prussia wanted to take the entire kingdom of Saxony – it was a very rich state and would be a major economic gain for Prussia  Eventually they reached the following compromise: ~ The Duchy of Warsaw became the Congress Kingdom of Poland was to a be a sovereign state but linked with personal union with Russia ~ Step by step the Russians were limiting the autonomous qualities of Poland ~ And by the 1860s, Poland had become part of Russia ~ The Congress Kingdom of Poland was not part of the Pale of Settlement*  The Grand Duchy of Poland was divided into three parts: Congress Kingdom of Poland (given to Russia), and Grand Duchy of Poznan (given to Prussia), and the Republic of Krakow (which would be a free state – really ruled by three representatives from P, R, and A)  Northern region of Saxony went to Prussia but the south remained independent  Prussia got the entire kingdom of Westphalia – allowed Prussia to become an economic power  Austria got back the former Illyrian provinces – Dalmatia and Croatia joined Austrian control  Venice and Milan went to Austria and were ruled by Hapsburg princes – Austria had given up it provinces in northern Europe (Netherlands etc.) but had gained northern Italy  The Congress confirmed that Finland would become part of Russia and Bessarabia (part of Moldavia) was given to Russia  Alexander I went through several stages in his life – he originally appeared to be quite liberal but as he got older he became more and more reactionary ~ He became very pious, very mystical ~ In 1825, he was succeeded by his brother, Nicolas I How to make this system stable?  Legitimacy – the monarchs must be legitimate; not necessarily synonymous with justice
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