• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Assess the view that the failures of the Congress of Vienna outweighed the successes.

Extracts from this document...


Assess the view that the failures of the congress of Vienna outweighed the successes The Congress of Vienna formed the conclusion to twenty years of war against Napoleonic France, wherein traditional values and practices were attacked, rulers deposed, and frontiers altered. The Congress has been condemned as an attempt to stem the growing threat from liberalism and nationalism. Furthermore, issues such as those of Turkey and the Near East, which were to become major sources of tension in ensuing years, were ignored; indicating that the Congress of Vienna failed in many respects. The failure of the Settlement has been advocated by Lord Grenville, a fellow member of Castlereagh's cabinet, who declared that Castlereagh must have been 'seduced by his vanity' and had 'his head turned by Emperors, kings and Congresses'1 to have agreed to such arrangements. However, when assessing the Settlement against the aims of those involved, a more optimistic picture is painted; the Congress can be regarded as a triumph in achieving a period of peace and stability within Europe. Sir Charles Webster asserts that 'the primary need of Europe was a period of peace, and this the statesmen of Vienna undoubtedly secured.'2 The need of peace in a post Napoleonic Europe was so vital, that the Congress' successes far outweigh the failures. Whilst opinions varied amongst the allies, there was some general consensus about the nature of the final settlement. Foremost, was the need to provide for a lasting peace in Europe through the creation of a balance of power; whereby no single power would be able to exercise control over others. The victorious powers also agreed to contain France by creating a series of buffer states along the French frontier. Castlereagh commented that 'it was a union for the re-conquest of the greater part of the continent of Europe from the military domination of France.'3 This is compounded by William Pitt, who stated that the settlement should 'provide for repressing future attempts to disturb the general Tranquillity'4 The success of ...read more.


Furthermore, the Prince Regent's abstention hinted at the fundamental weakness of the whole Settlement; the attitude of a country with a parliament and a limited monarchy was different from that of an autocratic Empire such as Russia or Austria, and hence it was going to become increasingly difficult for such countries to co-operate. This Alliance also became a focal point for the suppression of liberalism and nationalism, showing that the failures of the Settlement did outweigh the successes. French historians generally argue that the Vienna Congress provoked the 1830 and 1848 revolutions as it left France feeling weak, henceforth contending the Vienna Congress was a failure, as it failed to achieve its aim of re-establishing order. Gentz believed that the conditions imposed on France were in 'direction opposition to the eternal laws of social progress.'27 Talleyrand commented that 'by the treaty of Paris, France had escaped destruction but she had not the position she ought to occupy in the general political system.'28 This would indicate that the settlement failed as she was deprived of the ability to exercise influence of her neighbours Belgium and Italy, normal for a great power. However, the primary aim was to contain France and so the imposed conditions can be justified. France was also readmitted to the Great Powers Club in 1818, and grievances were not serious. Moreover, Seaman stresses the negative policies of Austria, Prussia and Russia in the years after 1815 is far more at fault than the treaty itself,29 and hence this would suggest that the Congress itself was a success, but it was the policies by reactionary powers after the 1815 arrangements which should be criticised, hence discrediting the view that the failures outweighed the successes. Although there were a number of revolutions in the following decades, there was more stability than instability; the eighteenth century has often been regarded as a period of limited war. ...read more.


powers, 1814-1914, Palgrave Macmillan 1996, 3 5 Adam Zamoyski, Rites of Peace, the Fall of Napoleon and the Congress of Vienna, HarpinCollinsPublishers 2007, 332 6 Norman Davies, Europe a History, Oxford University Press, 1996, 941 7 George F. E. Rud�, Debate on Europe, 1815-1850, Harper & Row, 1972, 5 8 Seaman, 4 9 Pradt, Dominique Georges Fr�d�ric, M, The Congress of Vienna 10 Eric Wilmot, The great powers 1814-1914, Taylor & Francis, 1992, 17 11 JOHN LOWE 12 Chapman, 56 13 Harold Nicolson, The Congress Of Vienna, a Study in Allied Unity, Taylor & Francis, 1946, 187 14 John Izzard, Quadrant Online, March 2010, Volume LIV 3, http://www.quadrant.org.au/magazine/issue/2010/3/crumbs-of-compassion 15 JOHN LOWE 16 Chapman, 17 17 Wilmot, 19 18 Zamoyski, 562 19 ADAM ZAMOYSKI? 20 Chapman, 58 21 George F. E. Rud�, 6 22 C.W Crawley, The New Cambridge modern history: War and peace in an age of upheaval 1793-1830, Cambridge University Press, 1965, 667 23 Karen Racine, Francisco de Miranda, a transatlantic life in the Age of Revolution, Scholarly Resources, 2003, 211 24 Baron John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton Acton, The Cambridge Modern History, Volume 10, the Macmillan Company 1934, 2 25 Zamoyski, 567 26 ZAMOYSKI? 27 Zamoyski, 523 28 Wilmot, 11 29 SEAMAN 30 Nicolson, 243 31 Paul W Schroeder, The Transformation of European politics, 1763-1848, Oxford University Press, 1996, V 32 Zamoyski, 554 33 Rene Albrecht-Carrie, 15 34 Charles Loch Mowat, Britain between the wars: 1918-1940, Taylor & Francis, 1968 35 CHAPMAN 36 Rene Albrecht-Carrie, 15 37 Seaman, 1 38 Seaman, 4 39 Seaman, 9 40 Frederick Binkerd Artz, Reaction and Revolution 1814-1832, Harper & Row, 1961 41 Zamoyski, 567 42 LOWE 43 Michael Cox, Twentieth Century international relations: Volume 1, SAGE, 2006, 3 44 Bartlett, 9 45 ZAMOYSKI 46 Zamoyski, 234 47 Wilmot, 12 48 CHAPMAN 49 Kissinger, 183 50 Zamoyski, 551 51 Zamoyski, 567 52 Wilmot, 17 53CHAPMAN 54 CHAPMAN 55 G�nther Auth, International society, and the making of international order, LIT Verlag M�nster, 2005, 241 ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Assess the successes and failures of Mussolini's domestic policy.

    5 star(s)

    As for his economic policy as a whole, autarky was not negative in any way, it simply left the economy to be very stagnant; there was only a 0.8% annual productivity growth, a big difference from the rate of 3.8% before and after the fascist regime, 1901-25 and 1940-52.

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Using these four passages and your own knowledge, assess the view that Napoleons Empire ...

    5 star(s)

    Meaning Spain just had to be part of the Empire, not necessarily a useful one. However, Interpretation A disagrees with this view, ?The Civil Code?in all dependant kingdoms.? Both these interpretations together, have the view that while all the dependant kingdoms and annexed territories had the Civil Code introduced, it

  1. Discuss the success and failure of the Vienna Settlement.

    France was treated as one of the Big Five to preserve the overall Balance of Power in Europe. As a result, no power could pursue aggressive policies without fact international opposition. The Congress of Vienna embodied the idea of a "Concert of Europe", that is, the joint settlement of problems and the collective maintenance of security.

  2. Reasons for Napoleon's Success (to 1807).

    In the meantime, could 600,000 men 'live off the land'? Unlikely, particularly sine the Russians were setting fire to supply dumps as they fell back. * The French had inadequate maps, poor clothing and few medical supplies. Before they crossed into Russia, 60,000 men had fallen because of disease.

  1. Discuss The African Slave Trade and its influences on the continent. What was ...

    Senegambia and the Windward Coast but over time as popularity escalated these sources diversified and grew to cover areas such as the Congo and modern day Angola. (Barry,1998). Slaves were usually obtained with the full and active co-operation of African kings and merchants.

  2. Hitlers Germany

    These Nazi officeholders presented a taste of what national rule would be like. They politicized all aspects of life under their control. In the state of Anhalt, they expelled the Bauhaus School of Design from Dessau because of its modern approach to architecture.

  1. AS Level Edexcel History Spain 1931-33 Revision Notes

    made many of them join the Nationalist cause in 1936. Agrarian reforms Minister of Labour, Largo Caballero, made reforms designed to address problems with rural workers ? especially in the south. He established: * 8-hour days and introduced overtime pay * Wage disputes were settled by mixed committees of labourers and landowners.

  2. How successful was the National Assembly bringing equality and liberty to France during 1789-93?

    be arrested without a hearing and had to be put before a court within 24 hours of the arrest. Likewise, the penal code became more humane as torture was abolished and the death penalty became more efficient with the introduction of the guillotine.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work