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How successfully did the European Congresses maintain European peace between 1815-1830?

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Introduction

History (HL) Notes P29 "Years of Ambition" Questions 1b, 2a & b 1b) How successfully did the European Congresses maintain European peace between 1815-1830? * The European Congresses maintained European peace in 1815-1830 considerably well. * (P10) P.W. Schroeder evaluates the Congress of Vienna "...How successfully did it establish peace? The Vienna system comes out with a remarkably positive balance sheet...It managed the German, French and Italian question as well as could reasonably be hoped. And even in areas of apparent failure, like Italy and Poland, though it did not prevent future conflict, it al least controlled it for a good long while. * The first Treaty of Paris was too generous on France and especially Napoleon Bonaparte who escaped from his exile on Elba on the 6th April 1815, only to again menace a frigid and war torn Europe. Only at the second Treaty of Paris on the 20th November 1915 did the Congress of Vienna get it right * The Congress of Vienna solved the German and French question well, making Austria into the dominant power of the peninsula, this led to no further violence between the years 1815-1830. ...read more.

Middle

* Under the principle of compensation countries most involved in the war against Napoleon were to be compensated with land from Napoleons France. * The French empire was returned to its original size, how it was before Napoleons reign, no land was taken away. The peacemakers at Vienna constructed a sort of protective barrier on France's eastern border, and on its north-eastern frontier, the new and supposedly more powerful United Netherlands was meant to keep France in check. France was also made to pay a heavy indemnity. As a result of the Congress, France was given a constitutional monarchy, designed to Contribute to European stability. * To solve the problem of the Netherlands the Congress of Vienna decided to bring the Dutch and the Belgians under joint rule of William of Orange to make a United Netherlands. * To solve the German and Italian question, the Congress decided that Austria was to be made into the dominant power of the Peninsula and thus resume its control of Lombardy and annex Venitia. Recommended reading: P6 "A: The congress of Vienna" P9 All 2B) ...read more.

Conclusion

It was in everyone's interests to create a peaceful Europe and most people were sick of war. This factor motivated the congress to, at all costs, preserve the peace. * In the Congress of Vienna solution to the Italian and German question, Austria selflessly agreed to become the dominant power of the peninsula, accepting a policing role in the region. This became a burden for Austria, and was a drain of resources. * The motive of the problem in the Netherlands was the vulnerability it would cause for Britain if it ever fell into French hands. London and the south east of England would be perpetually vulnerable to invasion if this happened. So, William of Orange agreed to take control of both the Dutch and the Belgians. This is another case of collective mentality and the ability to give and take. * Self-interest was behind each move of the major countries at the congress of Vienna. This was a collective interest of peace, and if war threatened, the countries involved would rather reach a compromise than cause war, as we saw in the crisis of Poland and Saxony. Recommended Reading: P5,6,7, ...read more.

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