Timeline of World History TIMELINE OF WORLD HISTORY



1800 - 1899
1800-09 1810-19 1820-29 1830-39 1840-49 1850-59 1860-69 1870-79 1880-89 1890-99
1800 1810 1820 1830 1840 1850 1860 1870 1880 1890
1801 1811 1821 1831 1841 1851 1861 1871 1881 1891
1802 1812 1822 1832 1842 1852 1862 1872 1882 1892
1803 1813 1823 1833 1843 1853 1863 1873 1883 1893
1804 1814 1824 1834 1844 1854 1864 1874 1884 1894
1805 1815 1825 1835 1845 1855 1865 1875 1885 1895
1806 1816 1826 1836 1846 1856 1866 1876 1886 1896
1807 1817 1827 1837 1847 1857 1867 1877 1887 1897
1808 1818 1828 1838 1848 1858 1868 1878 1888 1898
1809 1819 1829 1839 1849 1859 1869 1879 1889 1899
  BACK-1865 Part IV NEXT-1866 Part II    
1860 - 1869
History at a Glance
1860 Part I
Treaty of Turin
First Taranaki War
Convention of Peking
Secession of South Carolina
Poincare Raymond
The Church Union
1860 Part II
Barrie James Matthew
Boucicault Dion
Dion Boucicault: "The Colleen Bawn"
Collins Wilkie
Wilkie Collins: "The Woman in White"
Wilkie Collins 
"The Moonstone"
"The Woman in White"
George Eliot: "The Mill on the Floss"
Di Giacoma Salvatore
Labiche Eugene-Marin
Multatuli: "Max Havelaar"
Alexander Ostrovski: "The Storm"
Chekhov Anton
Anton Chekhov
"Uncle Vanya"
1860 Part III
Degas: "Spartan Boys and Girls Exercising"
Hunt: "Finding of the Saviour in the Temple"
Manet: "Spanish Guitar Player"
Ensor James
James Ensor
Mucha Alfons
Alfons Mucha
Levitan Isaak
Isaac Levitan
Steer Philip Wilson
Philip Wilson Steer
Mahler Gustav
Mahler - Das Lied von der Erde
Gustav Mahler
Paderewski Ignace
Paderewski - Minuet
Ignace Paderewski
Suppe Franz
Franz von Suppe - Das Pensionat
Franz von Suppe
Wolf Hugo
Hugo Wolf - "Kennst du das Land"
Hugo Wolf
MacDowell Edward
MacDowell - Piano Sonata No. 1 "Tragica"
Edward MacDowell
Albeniz Isaac
Albeniz - Espana
Isaac Albeniz
1860 Part IV
Fechner Gustav Theodor
Lenoir Etienne
Walton Frederick
Across the Continent
Burke Robert O'Hara
Wills William John
Stuart John McDouall
Grant James Augustus
"The Cornhill Magazine"
"The Catholic Times"
Heenan John Camel
Sayers Tom
The Open Championship
Park William
1861 Part I
Confederate States of America
Davis Jefferson
First inauguration of Abraham Lincoln
American Civil War
First Battle of Bull Run
Battle of Hatteras
The American Civil War, 1861
1861 Part II
Siege of Gaeta
Emancipation Manifesto
Louis I
1861 Part III
Dal Vladimir
Steiner Rudolf
Whitehead Alfred North
Charles Dickens: "Great Expectations"
Dostoevsky: "The House of the Dead"
George Eliot: "Silas Marner"
Oliver Wendell Holmes: "Elsie Venner"
Tagore Rabindranath
Charles Reade: "The Cloister and the Hearth"
Wood Ellen
Mrs. Henry Wood: "East Lynne"
Spielhagen Friedrich
Friedrich Spielhagen: "Problematische Naturen"
1861 Part IV
Garnier Charles
Anquetin Louis
Louis Anquetin
Godward John William
John William Godward
Bourdelle Antoine
Antoine Bourdelle
Korovin Konstantin
Konstantin Korovin
Maillol Aristide
Aristide Maillol
Melba Nellie
Royal Academy of Music, London
The Paris version "Tannhauser"
1861 Part V
Thallium (Tl)
Hopkins Frederick Gowland
Mort Thomas Sutcliffe
Nansen Fridtjof
Fermentation theory
Baker Samuel
Baker Florence
The Bakers and the Nile
Beeton Isabella
Harden Maximilian
First horse-drawn trams in London
Order of the Star of India
Otis Elisha Graves
1862 Part I
Battle of Fort Henry
Second Battle of Bull Run
Battle of Fredericksburg
Grey Edward
Briand Aristide
The American Civil War, 1862
1862 Part II
Rawlinson George
Ogai Mori
Ivan Turgenev: "Fathers and Sons"
Flaubert: "Salammbo"
Victor Hugo: "Les Miserables"
Barres Maurice
Maeterlinck Maurice
Hauptmann Gerhart
Wharton Edith
Schnitzler Arthur
Uhland Ludwig
1862 Part III
Albert Memorial, London
Manet: "Lola de Valence"
Manet: "La Musique aux Tuileries"
Nesterov Mikhail
Mikhail Nesterov
Klimt Gustav
Gustav Klimt
Rysselberghe Theo
Theo van Rysselberghe
Berlioz: "Beatrice et Benedict"
Debussy Claude
Debussy - Preludes
Claude Debussy
Delius Frederick
Frederick Delius - On Hearing the First Cuckoo in Spring
Frederick Delius
German Edward
Edward German - Melody in D flat major
Edward German
Kochel Ludwig
Kochel catalogue
Verdi: "La Forza del Destino"
1862 Part IV
Bragg William
Foucault Leon
Gatling Richard Jordan
Lamont Johann
Lenard Pnilipp
Sachs Julius
Palgrave William Gifford
The Arabian Desert
International Exhibition, London
1863 Part I
West Virginia
Emancipation Proclamation
Battle of Chancellorsville
Lincoln's "Gettysburg Address"
The American Civil War, 1863
1863 Part II
Isma'il Pasha
January Uprising
George I of Greece
Dost Mohammad Khan
Christian IX  of Denmark
Chamberlain Austen
Lloyd George David
Second Taranaki War
International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement
1863 Part III
Huxley: "Evidence as to Man's Place in Nature"
Charles Lyell: "The Antiquity of Man"
Massachusetts Agricultural College
D'Annunzio Gabriele
Bahr Hermann
Dehmel Richard
Hale Edward Everett
Edward Everett Hale: "Man without a Country"
Hope Anthony
Charles Kingsley: "The Water Babies"
Longfellow: "Tales of a Wayside Inn"
Quiller-Couch Arthur
Stanislavsky Constantin
Stanislavsky system
1863 Part IV
Stuck Franz
Manet: "Dejeuner sur l'herbe"
Manet: "Olympia"
Meurent Victorine-Louise
The "Salon des Refuses" in Paris
Art in Revolt
Impressionism Timeline
Signac Paul
Paul Signac
Munch Edvard
Edvard Munch
Berlioz: "Les Troyens"
Bizet: "Les Pecheurs de perles"
Mascagni Pietro
Pietro Mascagni: Cavalleria rusticana
Pietro Mascagni
Weingartner Felix
Felix von Weingartner: Symphony No 6
Felix Weingartner
1863 Part V
Billroth Theodor
Butterick Ebenezer
Ford Henry
Graham Thomas
National Academy of Sciences
Sorby Henry Clifton
The Football Association, London
Grand Prix de Paris
Hearst William Randolph
Yellow journalism
Pulitzer Joseph
History of photography
Alexandra of Denmark
Royce Henry
Cuthbert Ned
Coburn Joe
Mike McCoole
1864 Part I
Schleswig-Holstein Question
First Schleswig War
Second Schleswig War
Halleck Henry
Sherman William
Sand Creek massacre
Venizelos Eleutherios
Maximilian II of Bavaria
Louis II
First International Workingmen's Association
Confederate Army of Manhattan
The American Civil War, 1864
1864 Part II
Lombroso Cesare
Newman: "Apologia pro Vita Sua"
Syllabus of Errors
Dickens: "Our Mutual Friend"
Karlfeldt Erik Axel
Trollope: "The Small House at Allington"
Wedekind Frank
Zangwill Israel
1864 Part III
Stieglitz Alfred
History of photography
Dyce William
William Dyce
Jawlensky Alexey
Alexei von Jawlensky
Ranson Paul
Paul Ranson
Serusier Paul
Paul Serusier
Toulouse-Lautrec Henri
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec
A More Tolerant Salon
Impressionism Timeline
Whistler: "Symphony in White, No. 2"
Roberts David
David Roberts "A Journey in the Holy Land"
D'Albert Eugen
Eugen d'Albert - Piano Concerto No.2
Eugen d’Albert
Foster Stephen
Stephen Foster - Beautiful Dreamer
Offenbach: "La Belle Helene"
Strauss Richard
Richard Strauss - Metamorphosen
Richard Strauss
Fry William Henry
William Henry Fry - Santa Claus Symphony
William Henry Fry - Niagara Symphony
1864 Part IV
Lake Albert
Bertrand Joseph
Nernst Walther
Wien Wilhelm
Rawat Nain Singh
The Surveyors
First Geneva Convention
Knights of Pythias
"Neue Freie Presse""
De Rossi Giovanni Battista
"In God We Trust"
Travers Stakes
Farragut David
1865 Part I
Union blockade in the American Civil War
Charleston, South Carolina in the American Civil War
Lee Robert Edward
Conclusion of the American Civil War
Assassination of Abraham Lincoln
Johnson Andrew
Causes of the Franco-Prussian War
Leopold II of Belgium
Harding Warren
George V of Great Britain
Ludendorff Erich
Free State–Basotho Wars
The American Civil War, 1865
1865 Part II
Baudrillart Henri
William Stanley Jevons: "The Coal Question"
Billings Josh
Belasco David
Campbell Patrick
Lewis Carroll: "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland"
Dodge Mary Mapes
Mary Mapes Dodge: "Hans Brinker, or The Silver Skates"
Kipling Rudyard
Rudyard Kipling
Merezhkovsky Dmitry
John Henry Newman: "Dream of Gerontius"
Mark Twain: "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County"
Walt Whitman: "Drum-Taps"
Yeats William Butler
1865 Part III
Serov Valentin
Valentin Serov
Wiertz Antoine
Antoine Wiertz
Vallotton Felix
Felix Vallotton
"Olympia" - a Sensation
Impressionism Timeline (1863-1899)
Nielsen Carl
Carl Nielsen - Aladdin Suite
Carl Nielsen
Glazunov Alexander
Glazunov - The Seasons
Alexander Glazunov
Dukas Paul
Paul Dukas "L'Apprenti Sorcier"
Paul Dukas
Meyerbeer: "L'Africaine"
Sibelius Jean
Jean Sibelius - Finlandia
Jean Sibelius
Wagner: "Tristan und Isolde"
1865 Part IV
Plucker Julius
Hyatt John Wesley
Kekule: structure of benzene
Lowe Thaddeus
Mendelian inheritance
Sechenov Ivan
Whymper Edward
The High Andes
 Bingham Hiram
Rohlfs Friedrich Gerhard
Open hearth furnace
Martin Pierre-Emile
Ku Klux Klan
"The Nation"
Marquess of Queensberry Rules
"San Francisco Examiner"
"San Francisco Chronicle"
Mitchell Maria
1866 Part I
Cuza Alexandru
"Monstrous coalition"
Carol I
Austro-Prussian War
Battle of Custoza
Battle of Trautenau
Battle of Koniggratz
Battle of Lissa
Cretan Revolt of 1866–1869
MacDonald Ramsay
Sun Yat-sen
1866 Part II
Croce Benedetto
Soderblom Nathan
Larousse Pierre
Larousse: Great Universal Dictionary of the 19th Century
Friedrich Lange: "History of Materialism"
Benavente Jacinto
Dostoevsky: "Crime and Punishment"
Hamerling Robert
Ibsen: "Brand"
Kingsley: "Hereward the Wake"
Rolland Romain
Wells Herbert
H.G. Wells
"The War of the Worlds"

"The Invisible Man"
"A Short History of the World"
1866 Part III
Bakst Leon
Leon Bakst
Fry Roger
Kandinsky Vassili
Vassili Kandinsky
A Defender Appears
Impressionism Timeline (1863-1899)
Busoni Ferruccio
Ferruccio Busoni - Berceuse Elegiaque
Ferruccio Busoni
Offenbach: "La Vie Parisienne"
Smetana: "The Bartered Bride"
Satie Eric
Erik Satie: Nocturnes
Eric Satie
1866 Part IV
Aeronautical Society of Great Britain
Morgan Thomas Hunt
Nicolle Charles
Werner Alfred
Whitehead Robert
Whitehead torpedo
Doudart de Lagree Ernest
Panic of 1866
Thomas Morris
MacGregor John
1867 Part I
Manchester Martyrs
Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867
Constitution Act, 1867
Alaska Purchase
North German Confederation
Reform Act of 1867
Battle of Mentana
Mary of Teck
Baldwin Stanley
Rathenau Walther
Pilsudski Joseph
1867 Part II
Bagehot Walter
Walter Bagehot: "The English Constitution"
Freeman Edward Augustus
Freeman: The History of the Norman Conquest of England
Marx: "Das Kapital"
Thoma Ludwig
Soseki Natsume
Russell George William
Reymont Wladislau
Bennett Arnold
Balmont Konstantin
Pirandello Luigi
Galsworthy John
Charles de Coster: "The Legend of Thyl Ulenspiegel"
Ouida: "Under Two Flags"
Trollope: "The Last Chronicle of Barset"
Turgenev: "Smoke"
Zola: "Therese Raquin"
Ibsen: "Peer Gynt"
1867 Part III
Delville Jean
Jean Delville
Kollwitz Kathe
Kathe Kollwitz
Nolde Emil
Emil Nolde
Bonnard Pierre
Pierre Bonnard
Manet's Personal Exhibition
Impressionism Timeline (1863-1899)
Bizet: "La Jolie Fille de Perth"
Gounod: "Romeo et Juliette"
Offenbach: "La Grande-Duchesse de Gerolstein"
Johann Strauss II: The "Blue Danube"
Toscanini Arturo
Verdi: "Don Carlos"
Granados Enrique
Enrique Granados - Spanish Dances
Enrique Granados
1867 Part IV
Curie Marie
Michaux Pierre
Monier Joseph
Brenner Railway
Mining industry of South Africa
Thurn and Taxis
Chambers John Graham
London Athletic Club
Barnardo Thomas John
1868 Part I
British Expedition to Abyssinia
Battle of Magdala
Tokugawa Yoshinobu
Tenure of Office Act
Province of Hanover
Russian Turkestan
Mihailo Obrenovic III
Milan I of Serbia
Glorious Revolution
Horthy Nicholas
Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution
1868 Part II
International Alliance of Socialist Democracy
Charles Darwin: "The Variation of Animals and Plants under Domestication"
Louisa May Alcott: "Little Women"
Robert Browning: "The Ring and the Book"
Wilkie Collins: "The Moonstone"
Dostoevsky: "The Idiot"
George Stefan
Gorki Maxim
Rostand Edmond
Edmond Rostand
"Cyrano De Bergerac"
1868 Part III
Bernard Emile
Emile Bernard
Vollard Ambroise
Slevogt Max
Max Slevogt
Vuillard Edouard
Edouard Vuillard
The Realist Impulse
Impressionism Timeline (1863-1899)
Bantock Granville
Bantock "Overture The Frogs"
Granville Bantock
Brahms: "Ein deutsches Requiem"
Schillings Max
Max von Schillings: Mona Lisa
Max von Schillings
Wagner: "Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg"
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 1
1868 Part IV
Lartet Louis
Haber Fritz
Millikan Robert Andrews
Richards Theodore William
Scott Robert Falcon
Armour Philip Danforth
Badminton House
Garvin James Louis
Harmsworth Harold
Trades Union Congress
"Whitaker's Almanack"
Sholes Christopher Latham
1869 Part I
Presidency of Ulysses S. Grant
French legislative election, 1869
Prohibition Party
Red River Rebellion
Chamberlain Neville
Gandhi Mahatma
1869 Part II
Matthew Arnold: "Culture and Anarchy"
Eduard Hartmann: "The Philosophy of the Unconscious"
Mill: "On The Subjection of Women"
First Vatican Council
Blackmore Richard Doddridge
Blackmore: "Lorna Doone"
Flaubert: "Sentimental Education"
Gide Andre
Gilbert: "Bab Ballads"
Halevy Ludovic
Bret Harte: "The Outcasts of Poker Flat"
Victor Hugo: "The Man Who Laughs"
Leacock Stephen
Mark Twain: "The Innocents Abroad"
Tolstoy: "War and Peace"
1869 Part III
Lutyens Edwin
Poelzig Hans
Carus Carl Gustav
Carl Gustav Carus
Somov Konstantin
Konstantin Somov
Matisse Henri
Henri Matisse
Manet Falls Foul of the Censor
Impressionism Timeline (1863-1899)
Bruckner: Symphony No. 0
Pfitzner Hans
Pfitzner - Nachts
Hans Pfitzner
Wagner Siegfried
Siegfried Wagner "Prelude to Sonnenflammen"
Richard Wagner: "Das Rheingold"
Roussel Albert
Albert Roussel - Bacchus et Ariane
Albert Roussel
Wood Henry
1869 Part IV
Francis Galton: "Hereditary Genius"
Periodic law
Nachtigal Gustav
Cincinnati Red Stockings
Girton College, Cambridge
1869 New Jersey vs. Rutgers football game
Co-operative Congress
Lesseps Ferdinand
Suez Canal

Cavalry engagement at the battle of Königgrätz, 1866
YEAR BY YEAR:  1800 - 1899
1866 Part I
Alexander Cuza, Prince of Rumania, dethroned; succeeded by Karl, Prince of Hohenzollern, as King Carol I
Cuza Alexandru

Alexandru Ioan Cuza, (born March 20, 1820, Huşi, Moldavia [now in Romania]—died May 15, 1873, Heidelberg, Germany), first prince of united Romania, architect of national rural reform and peasant emancipation.


Alexandru Ioan Cuza
  The scion of an old boyar family, Cuza studied in Paris, Pavia, and Bologna, participated in revolutionary agitation against Russo-Turkish rule in his native Moldavia (1848), obtained the rank of colonel, and subsequently achieved prominence as a delegate to the Moldavian assembly (divan ad hoc) in 1857. Two years later, despite the Great Powers’ determination that the Romanian principalities should enjoy separate autonomy, he was successively elected prince of Moldavia (January 1859) and of Walachia (February 1859), thus effecting a personal union that presaged the formal proclamation of Romanian unity in 1861. He attempted to rule in the plebiscitary manner of the French emperor Napoleon III and openly courted the peasantry as “the state’s active force.” In 1863 he expropriated the vast lands owned by the monasteries of Moldavia and Walachia, and the following year he introduced a large-scale land-redistribution program (August 1864), which not only provided the peasants with ownership of their own plots but also emancipated them from all manorial services and tithes; the program, however, was only partly successful. In addition, the Prince, intending to provide universal free and obligatory educational services, built more schools at all levels and introduced a program to award scholarships to poor students. He also introduced reform in the electoral laws as well as the judicial system and revised the state structure through a new constitution, the Statut (1864), to enhance his own authority.
Nevertheless, his policies provoked the opposition of both conservatives and radical liberals, as well as some middle-class elements; in 1866, political leaders, who had formed a conspiracy, forced Cuza to abdicate and go into exile.

Encyclopædia Britannica

"Monstrous coalition"

"Monstrous coalition" (Romanian: Monstruoasa coaliție) is the name that has remained in the collective consciousness of Romania to refer to the alliance between conservatives and radical liberals in order to obtain Alexandru Ioan Cuza's removal from power. This name was promoted in its time by press favorable to Cuza.

Although at the first analysis a coalition between the political left (radicals) and the political right (conservatives) seems unnatural, it was logical within the political context of the time: the personal authoritarian regime introduced by Cuza.

Authoritarian tendencies began to be manifested by the ruler early in 1863, and the personal regime was installed after the coup of 2 May 1864. He increased his own power at the expense of other institutions. On 10 May, Cuza amended, through plebiscite, the Paris Convention which has hitherto functioned as Constitution for the United Principalities, transforming it into Developing Statues of the Paris Convention.

The most important change was the redistribution of state organization so that the ruler should have more powers. From this point, political scene was divided into two camps: cuzists and opposition. Moreover, the ruler understood to govern over political groups with trustworthy people, of moderate shades, as Mihail Kogălniceanu or Nicolae Crețulescu.

The leaders of this coalition were the radical C. A. Rosetti, conservative Lascăr Catargiu and the moderate Ion Ghica.

The "monstrous coalition" was supported by large landowners and businessmen who were not satisfied with the policy of the ruler. Coalition emerged after the National Assembly elections in Romania, second convocation, in 1864, and was chaired by Ion C. Brătianu. Mihail Kogălniceanu remained loyal to Alexandru Ioan Cuza. In 1866, the coalition gave a coup d'etat. On the morning of 11 February, five o'clock, a group of soldiers entered the Royal Palace and forced the ruler to accept the abdication. Cuza was forced to swear that he will abdicate, after seven years of reign, to leave the throne to a foreign prince, as is required in one of the provisions of ad-hoc divans of 1857. The unionist press related that the argument of this heinous act was the charge that the elected ruler would have betrayed the interests of the country to a foreign power.

Two days later, on 13 February, Cuza leaves Bucharest, taking the road of Vienna, and, after him, on 10 May 1866, Prince Karl of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen is proclaimed ruler of Romania, under the name of Carol I. Subsequently, Carol was asked to allow Cuza return home. The monarch sent the request to the Council of Ministers that rejected it.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Carol I

Carol I, original name Karl Eitel Friedrich, Prinz Von Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (born April 20, 1839, Sigmaringen, Prussia [now in Germany]—died Oct. 10, 1914, Sinaia, Rom.), first king of Romania, whose long reign (as prince, 1866–81, and as king, 1881–1914) brought notable military and economic development along Western lines but failed to solve the basic problems of an overwhelmingly rural country.


Carol I
  As a German prince, Carol was educated in Dresden and Bonn and in 1864 served as an officer of the Prussian army in the war against Denmark. With the tacit approval of his cousin, the French emperor Napoleon III, he was offered the throne of Romania after the deposition of the reigning prince, Alexandru Cuza (February 1866), and in April 1866 was elected prince by plebiscite.
In 1869 he married the princess Elizabeth of Wied, who later gained fame as the poetess Carmen Sylva. His Germanophile sentiments caused him to be domestically unpopular during the Franco-Prussian War (1870–71), and in 1871 unrest almost forced his abdication; but he regained popular support for his military leadership at the Battle of Plevna during the Russo-Turkish War (1877–78), and, with Romania’s complete independence from the Ottoman Empire, he was finally crowned king (May 1881).

In 1883 he concluded an alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary, which remained a closely guarded state secret until the outbreak of World War I. He fostered the development of urban industrial and financial interests with a large measure of success and significantly built the national military establishment; but his neglect of rural problems—especially peasant land hunger—found its issue in the bloody peasant rebellion of 1907, which claimed perhaps several thousand lives. His rule brought a great measure of dignity and stability to the administration of government, but his manipulation of political parties also perpetuated some of the worst features of Romanian public life.
He favoured entrance into World War I on the side of the Central Powers but accepted the decision of the Crown Council to declare neutrality.

Encyclopædia Britannica

Prussan-Ital. alliance against Austria;
Prussian troops annex the duchy of Holstein;
secret treaty between Austria and France concerning Fr. neutrality;
end of Ger. Confederation;
Prussia invades Saxony, Hanover, and Hesse;
Italy declares war on Austria;
Italians defeated at Custozza;
Prussian victory at Langensalza against Hanover, and at Sadowa (Koniggratz) against Austria;
Ital. fleet destroyed by Austrians at Lissa;
preliminary peace treaty between Prussia and Austria at Nikolsburg followed by armistice and confirmed by Peace of Prague;
Prussia annexes Hanover, Hesse, Nassau, and Frankfurt (as agreed in Peace of Prague);
Treaty of Vienna ends Austro-Ital. war;
Venetian plebiscite endorses union with Italy;
peace between Prussia and Saxony;
Schleswig-Holstein incorporated into Prussia
Austro-Prussian War

Seven Weeks’ War, also called Austro-Prussian War, (14 June – 23 August 1866), war between Prussia on the one side and Austria, Bavaria, Saxony, Hanover, and certain minor German states on the other.


Battle of Koniggratz, by Georg Bleibtreu.
It ended in a Prussian victory, which meant the exclusion of Austria from Germany. The issue was decided in Bohemia, where the principal Prussian armies met the main Austrian forces and the Saxon army, most decisively at the Battle of Koniggratz. A Prussian detachment, known as the army of the Main, meanwhile dealt with the forces of Bavaria and other German states that had sided with Austria. Simultaneously, a campaign was fought in Venetia between the Austrian army of the south and the Italians, who had made an alliance with Prussia.

The 1866 campaign was a carefully planned stage in the unification of Germany under Prussia’s Hohenzollern dynasty, of which Otto von Bismarck was the principal agent. The issue was clear-cut: Prussia deliberately challenged Austria for the leadership of the German Confederation. Prussia had challenged Austria in 1850, but the complete failure of its mobilization in that year compelled the acceptance at Olmütz of the somewhat humiliating terms of Austria. Since then Prussia, with Bismarck as statesman, Count Helmuth von Moltke as strategist, and Count Albrecht von Roon as army organizer, had prepared methodically for a fresh challenge.

  The actual pretext found by Bismarck in 1866 was a dispute over the administration of Schleswig and Holstein, which Austria and Prussia had seized from Denmark in 1864 and had since held jointly. Diplomatic exchanges began in January and military preparations a little later, but hostilities did not actually break out until the middle of June.

By the alliance with Italy, Bismarck contrived to divert part of the Austrian forces to the south. This advantage, together with that of Prussia’s modernized army discipline, resulted in a Prussian victory; the war was formally concluded on August 23 by the Treaty of Prague. The treaty assigned Schleswig-Holstein to Prussia. The latter also annexed Hanover, Hesse-Kassel, Nassau, and Frankfurt outright, thus acquiring the territory that had separated the eastern and the western parts of the Prussian state.

By the Peace of Vienna (Oct. 3, 1866) Austria ceded Venetia for transfer to Italy. Prussia’s victory in the war enabled it to organize the North German Confederation.

Encyclopædia Britannica

Seven Weeks’ War

Prior to the outbreak of hositilites both the Austrian and Prussian governments sought to rally allies in Germany. On June 15 Bismarck offered territorial compensation in the Grand Duchy of Hesse to the Electorate of Hesse, if Elector Frederick William were to ally with Prussia. The proposition grievously offended Frederick William's "legitimist sensibilities" and the monarch joined the Austrians, despite the Hessian Landtag voting for neutrality. King George V of Hanover during the spring of 1866 was contacted by Emperor Francis Joseph about establishing a coalition against the Prussians. The Hanoverian monarch concluded that his kingdom would fall if it were to fight against the Prussian armies.

Most of the German states sided with Austria against Prussia, even though Austria had declared war. Those that sided with Austria included the Kingdoms of Saxony, Bavaria, Württemberg, and Hanover. Southern states such as, Baden, Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel), Hesse-Darmstadt, and Nassau also joined with Austria. Many of the German princes allied with the Habsburgs principally out of defending their thrones.

Some of the northern German states joined Prussia, in particular Oldenburg, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Mecklenburg-Strelitz, and Brunswick. The Kingdom of Italy participated in the war with Prussia, because Austria held Venetia and other smaller territories wanted by Italy to complete the process of Italian unification. In return for Italian aid against Austria, Bismarck agreed not to make a separate peace until Italy had obtained Venetia.

Notably, the other foreign powers abstained from this war. French Emperor Napoleon III, who expected a Prussian defeat, chose to remain out of the war to strengthen his negotiating position for territory along the Rhine, while the Russian Empire still bore a grudge against Austria from the Crimean War.

Course of the war

The first war between two major continental powers in seven years, it used many of the same technologies as the American Civil War, including railways to concentrate troops during mobilization and telegraphs to enhance long-distance communication. The Prussian Army used von Dreyse's breech-loading needle gun, which could be rapidly loaded while the soldier was seeking cover on the ground, whereas the Austrian muzzle-loading rifles could only be loaded slowly, and generally from a standing position.

The main campaign of the war occurred in Bohemia. Prussian Chief of General Staff Helmuth von Moltke had planned meticulously for the war. He rapidly mobilized the Prussian army and advanced across the border into Saxony and Bohemia, where the Austrian army was concentrating for an invasion of Silesia. There, the Prussian armies, led nominally by King William I, converged, and the two sides met at the Battle of Königgrätz (Sadová) on July 3. The Prussian Elbe Army advanced on the Austrian left wing, and the First Army on the center, prematurely; they risked being counter-flanked on their own left. Victory therefore depended on the timely arrival of the Second Army on the left wing. This was achieved through the brilliant staffwork of its Chief of Staff, Leonhard Graf von Blumenthal. Superior Prussian organization and élan decided the battle against Austrian numerical superiority, and the victory was near total, with Austrian battle deaths nearly seven times the Prussian figure. Austria rapidly sought peace after this battle.

Except for Saxony, the other German states allied to Austria played little role in the main campaign. Hanover's army defeated Prussia at the Second Battle of Langensalza on 27 June 1866, but, within a few days, they were forced to surrender by superior numbers. Prussian armies fought against Bavaria on the Main river, reaching Nuremberg and Frankfurt. The Bavarian fortress of Würzburg was shelled by Prussian artillery, but the garrison defended its position until armistice day.

The Austrians were more successful in their war with Italy, defeating the Italians on land at the Battle of Custoza (June 24), and on sea at the Battle of Lissa (July 20). However, Italy's "Hunters of the Alps" led by Garibaldi defeated the Austrians at the Battle of Bezzecca on July 21, conquered the lower part of Trentino, and moved towards Trento. The Prussian peace with Austria forced the Italian government to seek an armistice with Austria on August 12. According to the Treaty of Vienna, signed on October 12, Austria ceded Venetia to France, which, in turn, ceded it to Italy.

Major battles
24 June, Battle of Custoza: Austrian army defeats Italian army.
27 June, Battle of Trautenau (Trutnov): Austrians check Prussian advance but with heavy losses.
27 June, Battle of Langensalza: Hanover's army defeats Prussia's. However, Hanover surrenders two days later.
29 June, Battle of Gitschin (Jičín): Prussians defeat Austrians.
3 July, Battle of Königgrätz (Sadová): decisive Prussian victory against Austrians.
20 July, Battle of Lissa (Vis): the Austrian fleet decisively defeats the Italian one.
21 July, Battle of Bezzecca: Giuseppe Garibaldi's "Hunters of the Alps" defeat an Austrian army.
22 July (last day of the war), Battle of Lamacs (Lamač): Austrians defend Bratislava against Prussian army.

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Battle of Custoza

The Battle of Custoza took place on June 24, 1866 during the Third Italian War of Independence in the Italian unification process.

The Austrian Imperial army, joined by the Venetian Army, jointly commanded by Archduke Albrecht of Habsburg, decisively defeated the Italian army, led by Alfonso Ferrero la Marmora and Enrico Cialdini, despite the Italians' strong numerical advantage.

In June 1866, the German Kingdom of Prussia declared war on the Austrian Empire. The recently formed Kingdom of Italy decided to seize the opportunity and allied with Prussia with the intention of annexing Venetia and thus uniting the Italian Peninsula. The Italians rapidly built up a military force that was twice the size of their Austrian counterparts defending Venetia.

Austrian uhlans under the col. Rodakowski attacks Italian Bersaglieri during the Battle of Custozza
In the fourth week of May, the Italians divided their forces into two armies: the 11 division strong Army of the Mincio led by General Alfonso Ferrero La Marmora and accompanied by King Vittorio Emanuele II, and the 5 division strong Army of the Po, led by Enrico Cialdini. The Austrians, using the advantage of interior lines and the protection given by the Quadrilateral forts, concentrated against the Army of the Mincio and left a covering force against the Army of the Po.

The King's force was to move into the Trentino region, while La Marmora's crossed the Mincio River and invaded Venetia. Meanwhile, the Austrian soldiers under Archduke Albrecht of Habsburg marched west from Verona to the north of the Italians, in an attempt to move behind the Italians so as to cut them off from the rear, and thus, slaughter them. At the start of June 24, 1866, La Marmora changed the direction of his front, toward the same heights the Austrians were trying to use as launching point for their attack. Instead of an enveloping battle, the two forces collided head on, with both headquarters trying to discover what happened in the heights near Villafranca.

On the Austrian left, the Austrian cavalry attacked the Italian I Corps without orders at 7 AM. Although the attack was ineffectual and only crippled the Austrian cavalry, it created a panic in the Italian rear and immobilized three Italian divisions, who for the rest of the battle only took a defensive posture. During the morning isolated fights broke out in Oliosi, San Rocco, Custoza and San Giorgio between Rodic’s V Corps and Durando’s I Corps. After fierce fighting the division of Cerale was thrown out of Oliosi, broke, and fled to the Mincio. Sirtori’s division was blocked from Monte Vento by Rodic’s other troops and by 8 AM, he was thrown back by fierce bayonet attacks. By 8:30 AM however, gaps were opening in the Austrian line.

  Brignone’s division had taken Belvedere Hill near Custoza after fighting with Hartung’s IX Corps. By 9 AM, Hartung started launching attacks up Monte Croce, trying to dislodge Brignone, but by 10 AM the Austrians seemed spent. The Italians however neglected reinforcing Brignone. The King’s younger son Amadeo led a counterattack, which failed, with the prince being severely wounded, and Brignone was ultimately forced to leave the position.

La Marmora then ordered the divisions of Cugia and Govone up the heights to relieve Brignone. This forced the Austrian brigades of Böck and Scudier out of Custoza. Scudier then retired from the field, opening another gap in the Austrian line. On the Italian left Sirtori had managed to stabilize his front after Cerale’s flight. At this point in the battle, both sides were thinking they were facing a lost battle.

By 1 PM La Marmora, deciding the battle was lost and wanting to secure his bridgeheads, ordered a retreat. Unbeknownst to La Marmora, Govone’s division had beaten back the VII Corps and captured Belvedere Hill.

By 2 PM Rodic launched an attack on Monte Vento and Santa Lucia. When Sirtori’s division gave way, a hole appeared in the Italian line, which the Austrians exploited. Govone, who thought he had finally broken through the Austrian line, suddenly found himself isolated near Custoza, with Rodic on one flank and an Austrian brigade making for the bridge at Monzambano. At this point, he was attacked in his other flank by Maroicic, who without orders had committed the two Austrian reserve brigades to the fight. At the same time Hartung’s Corps was ordered to restart the fight. They drove off the division of Cugia, capturing six guns and many prisoners on the top of Monte Torre, which they had earlier failed to capture. After a bombardment by 40 Austrian guns, at 5 PM the Italians were driven out of Custoza by Maroicic.

The Austrians were victorious, both strategically and tactically. The Italians were driven back across the Mincio out of Venetia. It was, however, not a decisive defeat. To inflict a decisive defeat on the Italians, Albrecht's forces needed to drive southwest to seize the bridges across the Mincio (which the Italians had neglected to fortify). Such a pursuit would have trapped the disbanded remnants of the two Italian corps on the east bank of the river and would have enabled Albrecht to invade the Kingdom of Italy itself.

Instead, Albrecht did not order a pursuit because he thought the Austrians were too exhausted and the Austrian cavalry had been mauled by frivolous attacks in the morning, squandering the possibility to the destroy the demoralized Army of the Mincio. On June 26, 1866, Albrecht shifted his headquarters back to Verona, because he was concerned about a possible French reply to an Austrian invasion of Lombardy. He should not have been: even the Emperor advised Albrecht to ignore all political considerations.

After their loss at Königgrätz (July 3), the Austrians were forced to transfer one corps from South Army to Austria to cover Vienna, weakening their foces in the Veneto. The Italians, however, resumed their offensive only in mid-July. Cialdini crossed the Po and occupied Rovigo (July 11), Padua (July 12), Treviso (July 14), San Donà di Piave (July 18), Valdobbiadene and Oderzo (July 20), Vicenza (July 21) and finally Udine, in Friuli (July 22). In the meantime Garibaldi's volunteers had pushed forward from Brescia towards Trento (see Invasion of Trentino) fighting victoriously at the battle of Bezzecca of July 21.

Despite the victory at Custoza and a naval defeat of the Italians at Lissa, due to Königgrätz the Austrians were forced to surrender to the Prussians and were forced to cede Venetia.

Scenes from the Italian side of this battle were recreated for the 1954 Lucino Visconti film "Senso".

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Battle of Trautenau

The Battle of Trautenau (German: Schlacht bei Trautenau) or Battle of Trutnov was fought on June 27, 1866, during the Austro-Prussian War. It was the only battle of the war that ended in an Austrian victory over the Prussians, but at a large cost.

The Prussian Second Army invading Bohemia had to split up in order to negotiate the difficult passes of the Giant Mountains. As they emerged on the Bohemian side, they met Austrian forces. At Nachod the Austrians were soundly beaten, but on the same day, as Adolf von Bonin’s I Corps emerged from the passes it was caught in the open on its way through Trautenau towards Pilníkov, where it was hoped to link up with the First Army.
The Battle
Bonin's vanguard cleared the passes during the late morning and entered Trautenau at 10:00. The Austrian X Corps, led by Ludwig von Gablenz, had broken camp at 8:00 and marched towards Trautenau to stop Bonin's advance. The Austrian troops arrived piecemeal with the Mondel brigade – which had started its march before the bulk of the Corps – being in position on the heights behind Trautenau at 7:45.

The advance guard of the Prussians was attacked by skirmishing Austrian Jäger when resting in the town square. Mondel, who had been ordered to avoid a general engagement until the whole Corps had assembled, pulled back his troops to the heights. Mondel's rear guard managed to hold up the Prussians until noon. By 12:00 Bonin's 1st division had driven off Mondel and pushed up to the town of Neu-Rognitz, his 2nd division had taken the heights and was scouting in the direction of the town of Alt-Rognitz. This gave the Prussians the time to move troops and guns up the commanding heights.

  As the Austrian brigades started arriving, Gablenz ordered a second brigade (Wimpffen) to pass Mondel and take the Johannesberg, while a third brigade (Grivicic) was to envelop the Prussian left and storm the Hopfenberg. To prepare the attack, Gablenz ordered a grand battery of 40 guns to open up fire on the Prussian held heights. Upon this heavy bombardment Bonin panicked and started to withdraw back towards the passes. Before this retreat could be enacted, the Austrians attacked in half-battalion masses.

The Austrian attacks of Grivicic and Wimpffen were uncoordinated and stalled against the Prussian fire from the Dreyse needle gun. Four Prussian battalions from the rear guard thus managed to hold up the Austrian brigades. By 17:00 Gablenz fourth brigade (Knebel) had arrived and was originally placed in reserve.

When he saw Grivicic's and Wimpffen's brigades struggling, Knebel disregarded orders and attacked and took the heights in conjunction with Wimpffen, losing 900 men in the process, to drive of Bonin's rear guard.
Although an Austrian victory, the cost had been high. The Austrians lost about 5000 men to the Prussians 1400. Although the Prussian I Corps had been driven back, Gablenz's position had become untenable. To his left Steinmetz's V Corps had broken through at Nachod and to his right the Prussian Guard Corps was nearing Eipel, threatening both his flanks. The following day Gablenz tried to evade encirclement by the Prussian Guards but he had to sacrifice most of Grivicic's brigade, which was nearly destroyed, at Burkersdorf and Rudersdorf, to enable his retreat.

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Battle of Koniggratz

The Battle of Koniggratz (German: Schlacht bei Königgrätz), also known as the Battle of Sadowa, Sadová, or Hradec Králové, was the decisive battle of the Austro-Prussian War, in which the Kingdom of Prussia defeated the Austrian Empire. Taking place near Königgrätz (Hradec Králové) and Sadowa (Sadová) in Bohemia on 3 July 1866, it was an example of battlefield concentration, a convergence of multiple units at the same location to trap and/or destroy an enemy force between them.

Preliminary campaign
At the outset of the war in June, the Prussian armies were gathered along the Prussian border: the Army of the Elbe under Karl Herwarth von Bittenfeld at Torgau, the First Army under Prince Friedrich Karl of Prussia between Senftenberg and Görlitz, and the Second Army under Crown Prince Friedrich in Silesia west of Neiße (Nysa).

The Austrian army under Ludwig von Benedek was concentrated at Olmütz (Olomouc). The campaign began with Herwath von Bittenfeld's advance to Dresden in the Kingdom of Saxony, where he easily defeated the Saxon army of 23,000 and joined with the First Army.

The reluctant Austrian commander Benedek had moved his troops out of their staging point at Olmütz only on 18 June, moving north in three parallel columns with the I Corps protecting the right flank. The Austrians took up positions at the fortress Josefstadt and the mountain passes from Saxony and Silesia.

  On 22 June, Prussia's Chief of the General Staff, Helmuth von Moltke, ordered both armies under his command to Gitschin (Jičín) near the Austrian positions, a daring maneuver undertaken to limit the war's duration despite the risk of one army being overtaken en route.

Fortunately for Prussia, Benedek was indecisive and failed to use his superior numbers to eliminate the Prussian armies individually. Initially, the Austrians were pressed back everywhere except at Trautenau (Trutnov), where they bested the Prussians despite great losses to their own forces. By 29 June, Prince Friedrich had reached Jitschin and inflicted a severe defeat on the Austrian I Corps under General Clam-Gallas. The Crown Prince had reached Königinhof (Dvůr Králové) despite stiff resistance.

On 30 June, Friedrich's First Army advanced to within one day's march of the Second Army. However, for the next two days the Prussian cavalry lost sight of the Austrians entirely, although Moltke's guess as to their actions — a retreat to the Elbe River — proved correct.


Eve of the battle
Dismayed by his losses, Benedek had ordered a withdrawal and urgently requested that Emperor Franz Josef make peace as the only way to save the army from a "catastrophe". When this was refused, and an ambiguous last sentence of the imperial telegram was interpreted as ordering a final stand, Benedek drew his Austrians up against the Elbe between Sadowa and Königgrätz.

The Prussians finally sighted the Austrians on the eve of 2 July near Sadowa, and Frederick Karl planned to attack the next morning. Moltke ordered the Crown Prince Frederick to join forces with the other two armies at the point where the Austrians were assembled, but the telegraph lines to the Second Army's positions were out, necessitating the dispatch of two mounted officers at midnight to ride the twenty miles' distance in time. They arrived at 4 a.m. The Crown Prince's Chief of Staff, Leonhard von Blumenthal, an able logistician, immediately reorganised Second Army's route plan.


Overview of the battle
The battle
The Austrian army of 215,000 faced the Prussian Army of the Elbe (39,000) and First Army (85,000) on 3 July. The Austrian infantry was partially fortified and supported by cavalry in the rear and artillery units with firing range across hilly, wooded terrain. The battle began at dawn in subsiding rain and mist as Prussia took its position west of the Bystřice River. Shortly before 8 a.m., the Austrian artillery opened fire, pinning down the Prussian right flank under Herwarth von Bittenfeld. The Saxons on the Austrian left fell back in good order, and proceeded to rain down fire on the advancing Prussian right from higher ground. Herwarth von Bittenfeld hesitated to order a full attack, and instead the advance guard of seven battalions, under Brig. General von Schöler pulled back to the river around 10:00 and took a defensive stance.

The Prussian center, with the Prussian 7th Division under General Eduard Friedrich Karl von Fransecky, having secured the Prussian rear earlier, led the advance into Swiep Forest, where it was met by two Austrian corps. The 7th Division had to both clear out the forest, and cover the Prussian left until the Second Army, under the crown prince, arrived. The Prussians methodically cleared the villages of Austrian defenders. King Wilhelm I of Prussia ordered the First Army across the river to support Fransecky. Sadowa was captured, but a fierce battle ensued in a nearby forest.

  The Austrian artillery held off the Prussians by firing into the smoke of the Prussian advance. The Prussians were slowed, and although the river was easy to wade, transporting artillery across it was extremely difficult. The Prussian attack was halted as the advancing Prussian 8th and 4th Divisions were cut down by the Austrian artillery as soon as they emerged from the smoke. However, the Austrian leader, Benedek, refused to call for a cavalry charge which later commentators have argued might have won the battle. Reserve units were deployed at noon, but the outcome of the battle was still uncertain and Prussian commanders anxiously waited for the crown prince.

To this point the Austrian superiority in numbers and position had held the day. Their weapons had longer range, which meant that the outnumbered Prussians could neither advance against the artillery barrage, nor effectively engage the Austrian infantry. The Prussians had attempted to bring three armies together for the battle, but problems with sending orders by telegraph and moving men by railroad had meant that only two of the three armies had arrived in time. The Prussian center, in the cover of the forest, was able to hold its position, and discourage a mounted charge by the Austrians, who were thought to have superior cavalry. However the close contact of the fight in the forest began to negate these advantages, the Austrians could not train their artillery on the close fighting, the damp weather made a cavalry charge risky, and Austrian IV Corps was committed piecemeal to the fighting.

At this point the relative strengths of the two armies were beginning to reverse. The shorter range of the Prussian artillery as compared to the Austrian was moot, while the vastly higher rate of fire from the Prussian breech-loading needle gun, compared to the Austrian muzzle-loading small arms and cannon were paramount. In addition the needle gun could be operated while prone in defense, and while moving quickly on the advance, while the Austrians had to stand up after each shot to reload their Lorenz rifles.
At 11:00 came the deciding moment of the battle; the Austrian center began a maneuver to flank the Prussian 7th Division, which had pushed back and held off nearly a quarter of the Austrian army. Colonel Carl von Pöckh was sent to drive the Prussians back, and with a fierce infantry charge managed to force the 7th Division back to the outskirts of the forest. Benedek's corps commanders pleaded with him to launch a counterattack to destroy the Prussian First and Elbe armies before the Second army arrived, but Benedek declined to act, letting the opportune moment slip by. However, the tide of battle was about to turn, as flanking fire raked Pöckh's battalion, annihilating it as a fighting force and killing its commander.

The fire came from the first elements of the crown prince's army as they arrived, and the 8th Division stiffened the Prussian center to hold off the Austrian thrusts. While divisions from the Austrian II and IV Corps were committed to the fighting, there was no decisive infantry charge, nor did the Prussians present a flank that could be attacked with cavalry. The Austrians were caught having moved from their defensive position to attack, and their right flank was exposed to the arriving Prussian infantry.

At 14:30 Crown Prince Frederick finally arrived with the main bulk of his almost 100,000 men, having marched with all possible haste all morning, and hit the Austrian right flank retiring from Swiep Forest while the Prussian artillery pounded the Austrian center. By 16:00 the last individual counter-attacks by the Austrian I and VI Corps were broken, even as Benedek ordered a withdrawal. Lt. General Friedrich Hiller von Gärtringen's 1st Prussian Guard reached the Austrian artillery, forcing them to stop reforming an artillery line and pull back. He had attacked because he saw the artillery as holding together the Austrian position, and his attack destroyed the lone cavalry battery that stayed to fight, and forced the others to flee, along with their reserves.

  At this point, having taken severe casualties, lacking artillery and cavalry cover, the high ground in enemy hands and the center being rolled up, the position for the Austrians deteriorated rapidly. The Second Prussian Army completely broke through the Austrian lines and took Chlum behind the center. The Army of the Elbe, which had merely held position after the early morning bloodying by the Austrian artillery and the Saxon infantry, attacked and broke through the Austrian left flank. It seized Probluz, and proceeded to destroy the Austrian flank. The Prussian king ordered all remaining forces into the attack all along the line, which had been slowed by the final counter-attack from the battalions of Brigadier General Ferdinand Rosenzweig von Dreuwehr's Austrian brigade. The arriving reinforcements joined the fight just as the Austrians had forced the 1st Prussian Guard back to Chlum. The result was a decisive shock of firepower which collapsed the Austrian line. The Prussian advance was so rapid that Benedek ordered a series of cavalry countercharges to back up his artillery and cover the general retreat he ordered at 15:00. These were successful at covering the Austrian rear, keeping the bridges over the Elbe open for retreating Austrian soldiers, and preventing pursuit by the Prussians, but at a terrible cost: 2,000 men and almost as many horses were killed, wounded or captured in the action. Benedek himself crossed the Elbe near 18:00 and several hours later informed the emperor that the catastrophe of which he had warned had indeed occurred.

The battle ended with heavy casualties for both sides. The Prussians had nearly 9,000 men killed, wounded or missing. The Austrians and allies had roughly 31,000 men killed, wounded or missing, with 9,291 of these being prisoners. Compounding the Austrians' losses was Austria's earlier refusal to sign the First Geneva Convention. As a result, Austrian medical personnel were regarded as combatants, and withdrew from the field with the main bulk of the forces, leaving the wounded to die on the field.


Cavalry engagement at the battle of Königgrätz (Alexander von Bensa, 1866).

Königgrätz was the decisive battle of the Austro-Prussian War. Following the battle the Prussians continued to pursue the defeated Austrian Nord-Armee and fought a series of minor clashes with the last skirmish being fought at Blumenau on July 22nd just as the Armistice to put a halt to the fighting was being signed. It provided a great opportunity for Prussian statesmen, by clearing a path toward German unification, in particular with the Little Germany (Germany without Austria) solution, with the subsequent foundation of the North German Confederation. The outcome also ensured that Prussia would have a free hand when the inevitable war with France came to pass in 1871.

After this Prussian victory, France attempted to extract territorial concessions in the Palatinate and Luxembourg. In his speech to the Reichstag on 2 May 1871, Chancellor Otto von Bismarck stated:

It is known that even on 6 August 1866, I was in the position to observe the French ambassador make his appearance to see me in order, to put it succinctly, to present an ultimatum: to relinquish Mainz, or to expect an immediate declaration of war. Naturally I was not doubtful of the answer for a second. I answered him: "Good, then it's war!" He traveled to Paris with this answer. A few days after one in Paris thought differently, and I was given to understand that this instruction had been torn from Emperor Napoleon during an illness. The further attempts in relation to Luxemburg are known.

The Königgrätzer Marsch was written to commemorate the battle.

The French public resented the Prussian victory and demanded "Revanche pour Sadova" or "Revenge for Sadowa",[7] which formed part of the build-up to the Franco-Prussian War of 1870.

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Battle of Lissa
The Battle of Lissa (sometimes called Battle of Vis) took place on 20 July 1866 in the Adriatic Sea near the Dalmatian island of Lissa ("Vis" in Croatian) and was a decisive victory for an outnumbered Austrian Empire force over a numerically superior Italian force. It was the first major sea battle between ironclads and one of the last to involve deliberate ramming.

The Italian navy fired roughly 1450 shots during the engagement, but failed to do any serious damage to any Austrian ship while losing two battleships. One of the main reasons for this poor performance was internal rivalry between the Italian fleet commanders: for example, Italian Vice Admiral Albini, with his ships, did not engage the enemy during the battle. The engagement was made up of several small battles: the main battle was between seven Austrian and four Italian ironclads and showed the ability of Austrian commander Tegetthoff to divide his more numerous opponents and then destroy the isolated ironclads.


Historical situation
The battle occurred as part of the Third Italian Independence War, in which Italy allied with Prussia in the course of the conflict against Austria. The major Italian objective was to capture Venice and at least part of the former Venetian territory from Austria.

The fleets were composed of a mix of unarmoured sailing ships with steam engines, and armoured ironclads also combining sails and steam engines. The Italian fleet of 12 ironclads and 17 unarmoured ships outnumbered the Austrian fleet of 7 and 11 respectively. The Austrians were also severely outmatched in rifled guns (276 to 121) and total weight of metal (53,236 tons to 23,538 tons). A single turret ship took part in the action — the Italian Affondatore.

Piedmontese Count Carlo di Persano commanded the Italian fleet, while the Austrian fleet was commanded by Konteradmiral Wilhelm von Tegetthoff.

The Fort of Lissa was put under the authority of the Oberst David Urs de Margina, Romanian of Transylvania.

Plans for the battle
The Italian fleet under Persano was divided into 3 divisions: Persano commanded the main battle force with 9 ironclads; his deputy, Albini, commanded a "support" division (engaged mainly in landings); and Admiral Vacca commanded a third "reserve" division with minor wooden ships.

The attacking Austrian fleet was also split into 3 divisions. The 1st Division consisted of the armoured ships, while the 2nd consisted of the powerful but obsolete unarmoured wooden ship of the line Kaiser and 5 frigates. The 3rd Division consisted of the smaller screw gunboats and armed merchantmen. The armed merchant cruiser Stadion was ahead of the fleet acting as a scout.

The three Austrian divisions were formed up into three consecutive arrowhead or "V" formations; the armoured 1st division under Tegetthoff was in the van, the weaker gunboats and paddle steamers of the 3rd division to the rear, while the powerful but unarmoured vessels of Kommodor Petz's 2nd division were in the centre.

The Austrian plan, due to their weaker firepower, was to close quickly into a melée, and to use close range fire and ramming to sink a small portion of the Italian fleet, thereby breaking the Italian will to fight.

The Italians, despite their numerical superiority, were not prepared for battle.

  They were busy preparing for landings on the island of Vis (Lissa) when the news that the Austrian fleet was at sea and seeking battle reached them. Persano cancelled the landings, ordered the fleet into line abreast but having second thoughts, cancelled that order (creating confusion among the Italian commanders) and ordered the fleet into 3 divisions in a line ahead formation, the same formation as at battles in the age of sail.

The 1st division in the vanguard consisted of Principe di Carignano, Castelfidardo and Ancona under Admiral Vacca, Captain 1st Class Faà di Bruno's 2nd division in the centre consisted of Re d'Italia, Palestro and San Martino, and the 3rd division to the rear had the Re di Portogallo, Regina Maria Pia and, at the extreme rear, Varese under Captain Augusto Riboty. In total, the Italians had 11 ironclads in the battle line. The other (wooden) ships were dispersed into the battleline. The exception was Affondatore, which was on the far side of the 2nd squadron and out of the battleline. Persano may have intended this to be an uncommitted reserve.

Before the battle Persano caused more confusion by deciding to transfer his flag to the Affondatore and the 2nd and 3rd Divisions slowed to allow Re d‍ '​Italia to lower her boats. However the signal to slow down never reached the 1st Division and they continued to steam on, allowing a gap to open in the Italian battle line. To compound the error Persano never signaled the change of flag, and throughout the action the Italians continued to look to the old flagship Re d‍'​Italia for orders rather than Affondatore.


Austrian victory at the Battle of Lissa


In the Austrian fleet there was enthusiasm but also fear, because the Italian fleet was bigger: 12 ironclads and 19 wooden ships with 641 guns, while the Austrians had only 7 ironclads and 20 wooden ships with 532 guns....When the engagement began, the Italian division Vacca was on a long circuit of the north of Lissa, and so was at first away from the battle. And it is curious that the Albini ships with their 398 guns, though ordered by Persano to do so, did not fire a single shot all through the battle.

Having ignored warnings from his pickets of suspicious ships in sight, Persano had effectively allowed the Austrians to ambush his force while it was still forming. Tegetthoff, seeing a gap opening between the 1st and 2nd Divisions, forced his fleet into it and concentrated on raking the Italians and ramming. This meant that he allowed his T to be crossed. While the Austrians were approaching, Vacca's 1st Italian Division threw a heavy weight of fire at them. The Austrians could only reply with their chase guns. Because Persano was in the process of transferring his flag, no general order was given. The 2nd and 3rd Divisions did not join in and the Austrians crossed the killing area, suffering some serious damage but no ships were lost. Drache on the extreme right (starboard) wing of the Austrian 1st Division was hit 17 times by heavy shells, losing her mainmast and temporarily losing propulsion. Her captain, von Moll, was decapitated by a heavy shell, but his subordinate, Karl Weyprecht, brought the ship back into the fight.

By 10:43 am the Austrians had brought the Italian van to close action. Habsburg, Salamander and Kaiser Max on the Austrian's left wing had engaged the Italian 1st Division, while the right wing of Don Juan d'Austria, Drache and Prinz Eugen engaged the Italian 2nd Division. Persano, now on the most powerful warship in either fleet, Affondatore, stayed clear of the engagement.

With the confusion in the Italian van, Kommodor von Petz took the opportunity to take his 2nd Division to the Italian rear and fall on their 3rd Division. The unarmoured wooden ships of the Austrian 2nd Division were facing modern ironclads armed with heavy guns, yet despite suffering heavy fire they held together. The screw frigate Novara was hit 47 times, and her captain, Erik af Klint, was killed. Erzherzog Friedrich was hit by a heavy shell below the waterline but still remained afloat, while Schwarzenburg was disabled by heavy Italian fire and set adrift.

Ramming attacks
Seeing things going badly, Persano decided to ram the unarmoured screw battleship Kaiser rather than one of the armoured ships engaged with the Italian 2nd Division much nearer him. However, Kaiser managed to dodge Affondatore. Taking heart from his admiral, the captain of Re di Portogallo laid heavy fire on Kaiser with his rifled guns. At the last moment, von Petz turned into the ram, conducting a counter ram. The impact tore off Kaiser‍'​s stem and bowsprit, leaving her figurehead embedded in Re di Portogallo. The Italian used the opportunity to rake Kaiser with fire, putting her mainmast and funnel into the sea. The smoke was so great that as they backed off for another ram they lost sight of each other and ended the duel.
At roughly the same time, Tegetthoff threw his flagship Erzherzog Ferdinand Max (commanded by Maximilian Daublebsky von Sterneck) at first at the former Italian flagship, Re d'Italia, and then at Palestro. In both cases he scored only glancing blows, but these caused serious damage, especially to Palestro, which was dismasted and set afire. Palestro‍'​s captain, Cappellini, pulled his ship out of the line. His crew refused to abandon their captain and Palestro finally blew up and sank at 2.30pm, with only 19 survivors out of a complement of 230.
Meanwhile, Erzherzog Ferdinand Max was circling Faà di Bruno's Re d'Italia, pouring on fire before surging forward and achieving a good impact with her ram, aided by the Italian having reversed in a poorly thought-out attempt to avoid crossing the Austrian's bows at the crucial moment.
Tegetthoff (centre) at the Battle of Lissa, painting by Anton Romako.

This put an18 ft (5.5 m) hole below Re d'Italia‍'​s waterline, and she struck her colours and sank two minutes later. According to legend, her captain shot himself after giving the order to strike the colours.

As Erzherzog Ferdinand Max limped away, damaged after conducting three ramming attacks, Ancona closed on her attempting to ram. The Italian gunners got a full broadside off at point blank range, but while they had remembered the gunpowder, in the excitement they had forgotten to load the shot.

After his encounter with Re di Portogallo earlier in the battle and having fought his way clear of Maria Pia, Kommodor von Petz's Kaiser found itself at close range with Affondatore. Despite being a perfect target for a ram, Kaiser survived when Persano ordered Affondatore to turn away.

Tegetthoff's victory was saluted by his mariners - mainly Croats and Venetians, from Venetia, Istria and Dalmatia - with the traditional Venetian cry of victory: "Viva San Marco!" ("Hurrah with Saint Mark!").

By 15:00, Tegetthoff had led his fleet into the harbour of Lissa, where the damaged Kaiser had already arrived, undisturbed by the Italian ships; despite Persano's orders to engage the Austrian vessels, both Albini and Vacca ignored the orders, as the latter candidly testified at Persano's trial. With his ships low on fuel and ammunition, and his crews spent, Persano led his fleet back towards his home port of Ancona.

In Italy, the outrage over the loss of two ironclads was huge and Persano after the battle was judged by the Senate, condemned for incompetence and stripped of his rank, while Admiral Albini was merely relieved of command, and Admiral Vacca had to retire soon after for age limits. Naval historian Giorgio Giorgerini stated Albini and Vacca deserved a more severe sentence than Persano.

Kaiser‍'​s encounter with Affondatore was the last major action of the battle. With two armoured ships sunk, the Italians withdrew, although there would be some exchange of long range fire for several hours.

Persano announced a victory, causing much initial celebration until the real outcome of the battle was publicized. He was forced to appear in front of the Italian Senate, which alone had the power to prosecute its members (such as Persano), and was dismissed, on charges of incompetence and cowardice.

Tegetthoff returned home a hero, was promoted Vizeadmiral, and is considered one of the greatest naval commanders in Austrian history.

The engagement had no impact on the outcome of the war, as the Italian defeat was overshadowed by the crushing Prussian victory over the Austrian Army at Königgrätz. Austria, humbled by Prussia and bullied by Napoleon III of France, agreed to cede Venetia to Italy despite the overall failure of the Italian war effort. However, Tegetthoff's efforts were instrumental in preventing the Italians from annexing some of the Dalmatian islands, which were once part of the Republic of Venice.

  The importance of ramming in the battle led to naval designers, over the next 50 years, equipping future warships (especially battleships and cruisers) with ram bows. This aggravated a number of incidents of ships being sunk by their squadron-mates in accidental collisions. Ramming never featured as a viable battle tactic again. The fixation on ramming may also have inhibited the development of gunnery.

Modern commentators now take the view that Lissa occurred during a period of weapons development when armour was considerably stronger than the guns available to defeat it.

This was compounded, on the Italian side, by poor gunnery and, on the Austrian side, by the fact that a number of their ships (including Ferdinand Max) had been forced to go into battle without their full armament owing to the Prussian embargo.

Kaiser, remarkably, reported herself fit for action the morning after the battle. Her feat, an unarmored, wooden ship willingly engaging four ironclads at short range, appears to be unprecedented and was never emulated.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Aftermath of the Austro-Prussian War. Prussia (dark blue) and its allies (blue) against Austria (red) and its allies (pink). Neutral members of the German Confederation are in green, Prussia’s territorial gains after the war are in light blue.

Aftermath and consequences
In order to forestall intervention by France or Russia, Bismarck pushed King William I of Prussia to make peace with the Austrians rapidly, rather than continue the war in hopes of further gains. William had "planned to install both the crown prince of Hanover and the nephew of the elector of Hesse as titular grand dukes in small territorial residuals of their dynastic inheritance" by opposition in the government cabinet, including Crown Prince Frederick to the annexation of several German states. The Austrians accepted mediation from France's Napoleon III. The Peace of Prague on August 23, 1866 resulted in the dissolution of the German Confederation, Prussian annexation of many of Austria’s former allies, and the permanent exclusion of Austria from German affairs. This left Prussia free to form the North German Confederation the next year, incorporating all the German states north of the Main River. Prussia chose not to seek Austrian territory for itself, and this made it possible for Prussia and Austria to ally in the future, since Austria felt threatened more by Italian and Pan-Slavic irredentism than by Prussia. The war left Prussia dominant in German politics (since Austria was now excluded from Germany and no longer the top German power), and German nationalism would encourage the remaining independent states to ally with Prussia in the Franco-Prussian War in 1870, and then to accede to the crowning of King William of Prussia as German Emperor in 1871. The united German states would become one of the most influential of all the European powers.

For the defeated parties
In addition to war reparations, the following territorial changes took place:

Austria: Surrendered the province of Venetia to France, but then Napoleon III handed it to Italy as agreed in a secret treaty with Prussia. Austria then lost all official influence over member states of the former German Confederation. Austria’s defeat was a telling blow to Habsburg rule; the Empire was transformed via the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867 into the dual monarchy of Austria-Hungary in the following year. Additionally Austria was also excluded from Germany.
Schleswig and Holstein: Became the Prussian Province of Schleswig-Holstein.
Hanover: Annexed by Prussia, became the Province of Hanover.
Hesse-Darmstadt: Surrendered to Prussia the small territory it had acquired earlier in 1866 on the extinction of the ruling house of Hesse-Homburg. The northern half of the remaining land joined the North German Confederation.
Nassau, Hesse-Kassel, Frankfurt: Annexed by Prussia. Combined with the territory surrendered by Hesse-Darmstadt to form the new Province of Hesse-Nassau.
Saxony, Saxe-Meiningen, Reuss-Greiz, Schaumburg-Lippe: Spared from annexation but joined the North German Confederation in the following year.


The North German Confederation after the war.


For the neutral parties
The war meant the end of the German Confederation. Those states who remained neutral during the conflict took different actions after the Prague treaty:

Liechtenstein: Became an independent state and declared permanent neutrality, while maintaining close political ties with Austria.
Limburg and Luxembourg: The Treaty of London (1867) declared both of these states to be part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Limburg became the Dutch province of Limburg. Luxembourg was guaranteed independence and neutrality from its three surrounding neighbors (Belgium, France, and Prussia), but it rejoined the German customs union, the Zollverein, and remained a member until its dissolution in 1919.
Reuss-Schleiz, Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt: Joined the North German Confederation.

Austria's desire for revenge

The Austrian Chancellor Count Friedrich Ferdinand von Beust was "impatient to take his revenge on Bismarck for Sadowa." As a preliminary step, the Ausgleich with Hungary was "rapidly concluded." Beust "persuaded Francis Joseph to accept Magyar demands which he had until then rejected." but Austrian plans fell short of French hopes (e.g. Archduke Albrecht, Duke of Teschen proposed a plan which required the French army to fight alone for six weeks in order to allow Austrian mobilisation). Victor Emmanuel II and the Italian government wanted to join this potential alliance, but Italian public opinion was bitterly opposed so long as Napoleon III kept a French garrison in Rome protecting Pope Pius IX, thereby denying Italy the possession of its capital (Rome had been declared capital of Italy in March 1861, when the first Italian Parliament had met in Turin). Napoleon III was not strictly opposed to this (in response to a French minister of State's declaration that Italy would never lay its hands on Rome, the Emperor had commented 'You know, in politics, one should never say "never"') and had made various proposals for resolving the Roman Question, but Pius IX rejected them all. Despite his support for Italian unification, Napoleon could not press the issue for fear of angering Catholics in France. Raffaele de Cesare, an Italian journalist, political scientist, and author, noted that:

The alliance, proposed two years before 1870, between France, Italy, and Austria, was never concluded because Napoleon III ... would never consent to the occupation of Rome by Italy. ... He wished Austria to avenge Sadowa, either by taking part in a military action, or by preventing South Germany from making common cause with Prussia. ... If he could ensure, through Austrian aid, the neutrality of the South German States in a war against Prussia, he considered himself sure of defeating the Prussian army, and thus would remain arbiter of the European situation. But when the war suddenly broke out, before anything was concluded, the first unexpected French defeats overthrew all previsions, and raised difficulties for Austria and Italy which prevented them from making common cause with France. Wörth and Sedan followed each other too closely. The Roman question was the stone tied to Napoleon's feet — that dragged him into the abyss. He never forgot, even in August 1870, a month before Sedan, that he was a sovereign of a Catholic country, that he had been made Emperor, and was supported by the votes of the conservatives and the influence of the clergy; and that it was his supreme duty not to abandon the Pontiff. ... For twenty years Napoleon III had been the true sovereign of Rome, where he had many friends and relations ... Without him the temporal power would never have been reconstituted, nor, being reconstituted, would have endured.

Another reason that Beust's desired revanche against Prussia did not materialize was the fact that, in 1870, the Hungarian Prime Minister Gyula Andrássy was "vigorously opposed."

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Ismail, Khedive of Egypt (Isma'il Pasha), granted rights of primogeniture by the Sultan of Turkey
Cretan Revolt of 1866–1869
The Cretan Revolt of 1866–1869 (Greek: Κρητική Επανάσταση του 1866) or Great Cretan Revolution (Μεγάλη Κρητική Επανάσταση) was a three-year uprising in Crete against Ottoman rule, the third and largest in a series of Cretan revolts between the end of the Greek War of Independence in 1830 and the establishment of the independent Cretan State in 1898.
The Christian Cretans had risen up together with the rest of Greece in the Greek Revolution of 1821, but despite successes in the countryside, the Ottomans held out in the four fortified towns of the northern coast (Chania, Rethymno, Irakleio and Agios Nikolaos) and the island was eventually reconquered by 1828, becoming an Egyptian province (Muhammad Ali's Egypt was a vassal of the Ottoman Empire, but a powerful and semi-independent one with its own military). In 1840, Crete was returned to direct Ottoman rule, followed by an unsuccessful 1841 uprising in support of Union with independent Greece.
Another uprising in 1858 secured some privileges, such as the right to bear arms, equality of Christian and Muslim worship, and the establishment of Christian councils of elders with jurisdiction over education and customary and family law. These concessions were resented by the Muslim community, while the Christians pressed for more, while maintaining their ultimate aim of Union with Greece.

As tensions ran high in the island, and several petitions to the Sultan went unanswered, armed bands were formed, and the uprising was officially proclaimed on August 21, 1866. The revolt caused immediate sympathy in Greece, but also elsewhere in Europe. The rebels initially managed to gain control of most of the hinterland although as always the four fortified towns of the north coast and the southern town of Ierapetra remained in Ottoman hands.
One particular event caused strong reactions among the liberal circles of western Europe, the "Holocaust of Arkadi". The event occurred in November 1866, as a large Ottoman force besieged the Arkadi Monastery, which served as the headquarters of the rebellion. In addition to its 259 defenders, over 700 women and children had taken refuge in the monastery.

After a few days of hard fighting, the Ottomans broke into the monastery. At that point, the abbot of the monastery set fire to the gunpowder stored in the monastery's vaults, causing the death of most of the rebels and the women and children sheltered there. As reported by the American writer and consul William Stillman and others over the recently introduced telegraph, this event caused enormous shock in the rest of Europe and in North America and decreased the perceived legitimacy of Turkish rule.

Map of the distribution of Greeks (blue) and Turks (red) in Crete in 1861.
By the mid-19th century, the Turks had occupied Crete for more than two centuries, despite frequent bloody uprisings by Cretan rebels. While the Cretans were rising against the Ottoman occupation during the War of Greek Independence, the London Protocol of 1830 dictated that the island could not be a part of the new Greek state.

On March 30, 1856, the Treaty of Paris obligated the Sultan to apply the Hatti-Houmayoun, which guaranteed civil and religious equality to Christians and Muslims. The Ottoman authorities in Crete were reluctant to implement any reform.

Before the majority of Muslim conversions (the majority of the former Christians had converted to Islam and then recanted), the Empire tried to recant on liberty of conscience. The institution of new taxes and a curfew also added to the discontent.

In April 1858, 5,000 Cretans met at Boutsounaria. Finally an imperial decree on July 7, 1858 guaranteed them privileges in religious, judicial and financial matters. One of the major motivations of the revolt of 1866 was the breach of the Hatti-Houmayoun.

A second cause of the insurrection of 1866 was the interference of Hekim Ismail Pasha, wāli of Crete, in an internal quarrel about the organization of the Cretan monasteries. Several laymen recommended that the goods of the monasteries come under the control of a council of elders and that they be used to create schools, but they were opposed by the bishops. Ismail Pasha intervened and designated several people to decide the subject and annulled the election of "undesirable" members, imprisoning the members of the committee that had been charged with going to Constantinople for presenting the subject to the Patriarch. This intervention provoked violent reactions from the Christian population of Crete.

  In the spring of 1866, meetings took place in several villages. On May 14, an assembly was held in the Aghia Kyriaki monstary in Boutsounaria near Chania. They sent a petition to the Sultan and the consuls of the big powers in Chania. At the time of the first meetings of the revolutionary committees, the representatives were elected by province and the representative of the Rethymno region was the hegumen of Arkadi, Gabriel Marinakis

At the announcement of these nominations Ismail Pasha sent a message to the hegumen via the Bishop of Rethymno, Kallinikos Nikoletakis. The letter demanded that the higumen dissemble the revolutionary assembly or the monastery would be destroyed by Ottoman troops. In the month of July 1866, Ismail Pasha sent his army to capture the insurgents, but the members of the committee fled before his troops arrived. The Turks left again after destroying icons and other sacred objects that they found in the monastery.

In September, Ismail Pasha sent the hegumen a new threat of destroying the monastery if the assembly did not yield. The assembly decided to implement a system of defense for the monastery. On September 24, Panos Koronaios arrived in Crete and landed at Bali. He marched to Arkadi, where he was made commander-in-chief of the revolt for the Rethymno region. A career military man, Koronaios believed that the monastery was not defensible. The hegumen and the monks disagreed and Koronaios conceded to them, but advised the destruction of the stables so that they could not be used by the Turks. This plan was ignored. After having named Ioannis Dimakopoulos to the post of commander of the garrison of the monastery, Koronaios left. At his departure, numerous local residents, mostly women and children, took refuge in the monastery, bringing their valuables in hopes of saving them from the Turks. By November 7, 1866, the monastery sheltered 964 people: 325 men, of which 259 were armed, the rest women and children.


Route taken by Mustafa Pasha of Apokoronas to Arkadi
Arrival of the Ottomans
Since the mid-October victory of Mustafa Pasha's troops at Vafes, the majority of the Turkish army was stationed in Apokoronas and were particularly concentrated in the fortresses around the bay of Souda. The monastery refused to surrender, so Mustafa Pasha marched his troops on Arkadi. First, he stopped and sacked the village of Episkopi. From Episkopi, Mustafa sent a new letter to the revolutionary committee at Arkadi, ordering them to surrender and informing them that he would arrive at the monastery in the following days. The Ottoman army then turned toward Roustika, where Mustafa spent the night in the monastery of the prophet Elie, while his army camped in the villages of Roustika and Aghios Konstantinos. Mustafa arrived in Rethymno on November 5, where he met Turkish and Egyptian reinforcements. The Ottoman troops reached the monastery during the night of November 7-November 8. Mustafa, although he had accompanied his troops to a site relatively close, camped with his staff in the village of Messi.
On the morning of November 8, an army of 15,000 Turks and 30 cannons, directed by Suleyman, arrived on the hills of the monastery while Mustafa Pasha waited in the Messi. Suleyman, positioned on the hill of Kore to the north of the monastery sent a last request for surrender. He received only gunfire in response.

The assault was begun by the Turks. Their primary objective was the main door of the monastery on the western face. The battle lasted all day without the Ottomans infiltrating the building. The asseiged had barricaded the door and, from the beginning, taking it would be difficult. The Cretans were relatively protected by the walls of the monastery, while the Turks, vulnerable to the insurgents' gunfire, suffered numerous losses. Seven Cretans took their position within the windmill of the monastery. This building was quickly captured by the Turks, who set it on fire, killing the Cretan warriors inside.

The battle stopped with nightfall. The Ottomans received two heavy cannons from Rethymno, one which was called Koutsahila. They placed them in the stables. On the side of the insurgents, a war council decided to ask for help from Panos Koronaios and other Cretan leaders in Amari. Two Cretans left by way of the windows by ropes and, disguised as Turks, crossed the Ottoman lines. The messengers returned later in the night with the news that it was now impossible for reinforcements to arrive in time because all of the access roads had been blocked by the Turks.

Combat began again in the evening of November 9. The cannons destroyed the doors and the Turks made it into the building, where they suffered more serious losses. At the same time, the Cretans were running out of ammunition and many among them were forced to battle with only bayonets or other sharp objects. The Turks had the advantage.

Bust of the igumen Gabriel
The women and children inside the monastery were hiding in the powder room. The last Cretan fighters were finally defeated and hid within the monastery. Thirty-six insurgents found refuge in the refectory, near the ammunitions. Discovered by the Turks, who forced the door, they were massacred.

In the powder room, where the majority of the women and children hid, Konstantinos Giaboudakis gathered the people hiding in the neighboring rooms together. When the Turks arrived at the door of the powder room, Giaboudakis set the barrels of powder on fire and the resulting explosion resulted in numerous Turkish deaths.

In another room of the monastery holding an equal number of powder barrels, insurgents made the same gesture. But the powder was humid and only exploded partially, so it only destroyed part of the northwest wall of the room.

Of the 964 people present at the start of the assault, 864 were killed in combat or at the moment of the explosion. 114 men and women were captured, but three or four managed to escape, including one of the messengers who had gone for reinforcements. The hegumen Gabriel was among the victims. Tradition holds that he was among those killed by the explosion of the barrels of powder, but it is more likely that he was killed on the first day of combat. Turkish losses were estimated at 1500. Their bodies were buried without memorials and some were thrown in the neighboring gorges. The remains of numerous Cretan Christians were collected and placed in the windmill, which was made into a reliquary in homage to the defenders of Arkadi. Among the Ottoman troops, a group of Coptic Egyptians were found on the hills outside the monastery. These Christians had refused to kill other Christians. They were executed by the Ottoman troops, and their ammunition cases left behind.

114 survivors were taken prisoner and transported to Rethymno where they were subjected to numerous humiliations from the officers responsible for their transport, but also by the Muslim population who arrived to throw stones and insults when they entered the city. The women and children were imprisoned for a week in the church of the Presentation of the Virgin. The men were imprisoned for a year in difficult conditions. The Russian consulate had to intervene to require Mustafa Pasha to keep basic hygienic conditions and provide clothing to the prisoners. After one year, the prisoners were released.

Ioannis Dimakopoulos
International Reaction
The Ottomans considered taking Arkadi a big victory and celebrated it with cannon fire. However, the events at Arkadi provoked indignation among the Cretans, but also in Greece and the rest of the world. The tragedy of Arkadi turned world opinion on the conflict. The event recalled the Third Siege of Missolonghi and the numerous Philhellenists of the world were in favor of Crete. Volunteers from Serbia, Hungary and Italy arrived on the island. Gustave Flourens, a teacher at the Collège de France, enlisted and arrived in Crete by the end of 1866. He formed a small group of philhellenists with three other Frenchmen, an Englishman, an American, an Italian and a Hungarian.
This group published a brochure on The question of the Orient and the Cretan Renaissance, contacted French politicians and organized conferences in France and in Athens. The Cretans named him a deputy at the assembly, but he turned the position down.

The hegumen Gabriel gathering the besieged near the powder magazine
Giuseppe Garibaldi, in his letters, praised the patriotism of the Cretans and their wish to gain their independence. Numerous Garibaldians, moved by an ardent philhellenism, came to Crete and participated in several battles. Letters written by Victor Hugo were published in the newspaper Kleio in Trieste, which contributed to the worldwide reaction. The letters gave encouragement to the Cretans and told them that their cause would succeed. He emphasized that the drama of Arkadi was no different than the Destruction of Psara and the Third Siege of Missolonghi.
He described the tragedy of Arkadi:

In writing these lines, I am obeying an order from on high; an order that comes from agony.

One knows this word, Arkadian, but one hardly understands what it means. And here are some of the precise details that have been neglected. In Arkadia, the monastery on Mount Ida, founded by Heraclius, six thousand Turks attacked one hundred ninety-seven men and three hundred forty-three women and also children.

The Turks had twenty-six cannons and two howitzers, the Greeks had two hundred forty rifles. The battle lasted two days and two nights; the convent had twelve hundred holes found in it from cannon fire; one wall crumbled, the Turks entered, the Greeks continued the fight, one hundred fifty rifles were down and out and yet the struggle continued for another six hours in the cells and the stairways, and at the end there were two thousand corpses in the courtyard. Finally the last resistance was broken through; the masses of the Turks took the convent. There only remained one barricaded room that held the powder and, in this room, next to the altar, at the center of a group of children and mothers, a man of eighty years, a priest, the higumen Gabriel, in prayer...the door, battered by axes, gave and fell.

The old man put a candle on the altar, took a look at the children and the women and lit the powder and spared them. A terrible intervention, the explosion, rescued the defeated...and this heroic monastery, that had been defended like a fortress, ended like a volcano.

Konstantinos Giaboudakis
Not finding the necessary solution from the big European powers, the Cretans sought aid from the United States. At this time, the Americans tried to establish a presence in the Mediterranean and showed support for Crete. The relationship grew as they looked for a port in the Mediterranean and they thought, among others, to buy the island of Milo or Port Island. The American public was sympathetic. The American philhellenes arrived to advocate for the idea of Cretan independence, and in 1868, a question of recognition of independent Crete was addressed in the House of Representatives, but it was decided by a vote to follow a policy of non-intervention in Ottoman affairs.
Because the loss of Crete might have been the prelude to a much more serious loss of Ottoman territory in the Balkans, the Ottoman Grand Vizier, A'ali Pasha, arrived in the island in October 1867 and remained there for four months. A'ali set in progress a low profile district by district reconquest of the island followed by the construction of blockhouses or local fortresses across the whole of it. These were the basis of continued Turkish military rule until the final crisis of 1896-1898.

More importantly, he designed an Organic Law which gave the Cretan Christians equal (in practice, because of their superior numbers, majority) control of local administration. He thus gained the minimum of political cooperation needed to retain control of the island by early 1869 and almost all the rebel leaders had submitted to Ottoman rule though some, notably the pro-Russian Hadjimichaelis, remained in exile in Greece.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
MacDonald Ramsay
Ramsay MacDonald, in full James Ramsay MacDonald (born Oct. 12, 1866, Lossiemouth, Moray, Scot.—died Nov. 9, 1937, at sea en route to South America), first Labour Party prime minister of Great Britain, in the Labour governments of 1924 and 1929–31 and in the national coalition government of 1931–35.

James Ramsay MacDonald
  MacDonald was the son of an unmarried maidservant. He ended his elementary education at the age of 12 but continued at school for another six years, working as a pupil-teacher.

In 1885 he went to work in Bristol, where the activities of the Social Democratic Federation acquainted him with left-wing ideas. Traveling to London the following year, he joined the Fabian Society, was employed in menial office jobs, and worked for a science degree in his spare time until his health broke down. In 1894 he joined the newly founded Independent Labour Party, and the next year he was defeated as a candidate of that party for the House of Commons.

In 1900 he became the first secretary of the Labour Representation Committee (LRC), the true predecessor of the Labour Party. In 1906 he was one of 29 LRC members to win election to the Commons; the LRC thereupon transformed itself into the Labour Party. Five years later he succeeded Keir Hardie as parliamentary leader of the party. He was forced to resign in favour of Arthur Henderson in 1914 after stating that Great Britain was morally wrong in declaring war on Germany. Although he nonetheless insisted that the nation should make every effort to win the war, he lost much of his popularity and was defeated for reelection in 1918. On returning to Parliament in 1922, he was chosen to lead the Labour opposition.
After the election of 1923 the Conservatives remained the largest party in Parliament, but for the first time they were outnumbered by the Labourites and the Liberals combined.

H. H. Asquith, leader of the Liberals and a former prime minister, offered to support MacDonald. On Jan. 22, 1924, MacDonald became prime minister and also foreign secretary. Under his leadership that year, Great Britain granted recognition to the Soviet regime in Russia; the Geneva Protocol for security and disarmament (approved by the League of Nations Assembly on Oct. 2, 1924) was initiated; and the threat of violence in Ireland was averted when the British government agreed to cancel the debt owed by the Irish Free State, in return for the Free State’s abandonment of its demand for the six northern counties.

A bungled prosecution of J.R. Campbell, a communist newspaper editor, led to an adverse vote in the Commons. Because of that rebuff and various other factors, the Conservatives regained a majority, and MacDonald resigned Nov. 4, 1924.

Ramsay MacDonald by Solomon Joseph Solomon, 1911.
  At the general election of 1929, however, Labour for the first time achieved the largest number of seats, and MacDonald returned as prime minister on June 5. He negotiated an Anglo–U.S. naval limitation treaty (1930), while his foreign secretary, Arthur Henderson, was organizing the World Disarmament Conference at Geneva. At home, the effects of the worldwide economic depression proved beyond the understanding of MacDonald and most of his Cabinet.

On Aug. 24, 1931, he offered his resignation, but the next day his Labour colleagues were dismayed to learn that he was remaining in office as head of a coalition, with Conservative and Liberal support. His ability to lead the government was waning, however, and the lord president of the council, Stanley Baldwin, a former Conservative prime minister, became effective head of the government. Finally, on June 7, 1935, MacDonald exchanged offices with Baldwin. He resigned the lord presidency on May 28, 1937, and died later that year on a voyage to South America.

The first volume of Lord Elton’s Life of James Ramsay MacDonald, covering his career until 1919, appeared in 1939; the second volume was never published. L. MacNeill Weir wrote The Tragedy of Ramsay MacDonald (1938). A major biography is David Marquand’s Ramsay MacDonald (1977).

Encyclopædia Britannica
Sun Yat-sen

Sun Yat-sen, Chinese (Pinyin) Sun Yixian or (Wade-Giles romanization) Sun I-hsien, original name Sun Wen, courtesy name (zi) Deming, literary name (hao) Rixin, later Yixian, also called Sun Zhongshan (born Nov. 12, 1866, Xiangshan [now Zhongshan], Guangdong province, China—died March 12, 1925, Beijing), leader of the Chinese Nationalist Party (Kuomintang [Pinyin: Guomindang]), known as the father of modern China. Influential in overthrowing the Qing (Manchu) dynasty (1911/12), he served as the first provisional president of the Republic of China (1911–12) and later as de facto ruler (1923–25).


Sun Yat-sen
  Early life and influences
Sun was born to a family of poor farmers in Xiangshan, in the South China province of Guangdong.
In 1879 his brother Sun Mei, who had earlier emigrated to Hawaii as a labourer, brought him to Honolulu, where, as a student at a British missionary school for three years and at an American school, Oahu College, for another year, he first came into contact with Western influences. Because his brother objected to his penchant for Christianity, Sun returned to his native village in 1883 and went to study at the Diocesan Home in Hong Kong in the fall; late that year, he was baptized by an American missionary.

In 1884 he transferred to the Government Central School (later known as Queen’s College) and married Lu Muzhen (1867–1952), who was chosen for him by his parents. Out of this marriage a son and two daughters were born. After another trip to Hawaii, he enrolled in the Guangzhou (Canton) Hospital Medical School in 1886. He transferred later to the College of Medicine for Chinese in Hong Kong and graduated in 1892.

Although not trained for a political career in the traditional style, Sun was nevertheless ambitious and was troubled by the way China, which had clung to its traditional ways under the conservative Qing dynasty, suffered humiliation at the hands of more technologically advanced nations.

Forsaking his medical practice in Guangzhou, he went north in 1894 to seek political fortunes. In a long letter to Li Hongzhang, governor-general of Zhili (Chihli, now Hebei) province, he set forth his ideas of how China could gain strength, but all he received from Li was a perfunctory endorsement of his scheme for an agricultural-sericultural association. With this scant reference, Sun went to Hawaii in October 1894 and founded an organization called the Revive China Society (Xingzhonghui), which became the forerunner of the secret revolutionary groups Sun later headed. As far as it can be determined, the membership was drawn entirely from natives of Guangdong and from lower social classes, such as clerks, peasants, and artisans.

Sun Yat-sen, 1900
  Years in exile
Taking advantage of China’s defeat in the Sino-Japanese War (1894–95) and the ensuing crisis, Sun went to Hong Kong in 1895 and plotted for an uprising in Guangzhou (Canton), the capital of his native province. When the scheme failed, he began a 16-year exile abroad.

In 1896, under circumstances not entirely clear, Sun was caught and detained for 13 days by the Chinese legation in London. It appears likely that Sun ran into a fellow Cantonese who worked for the legation and was found out and seized while visiting him under an alias. The legation planned to ship Sun back to China, but, before this could be done, Sun had converted a British employee at the legation to his side and got word through to James Cantlie, former dean of Hong Kong College of Medicine. The British Foreign Office intervened, and Sun was released from his captivity. The incident engendered great publicity and gave Sun’s career a powerful boost.

After spending much of the ensuing eight months reading in the British Museum, Sun traveled to Japan by way of Canada. Arriving in August 1897, he was met by Miyazaki Torazō, an adventurer who had heard of the London incident and who was willing to help Sun in his political activities. Miyazaki introduced Sun to many influential Japanese, including the elder statesmen Ōkuma Shigenobu, Soejima Taneomi, and Inukai Tsuyoshi, from some of whom Sun was to receive both political and financial assistance. During the turmoil of 1900, Sun participated in secret maneuvers involving Sir Henry Blake, the British governor of Hong Kong, and He Kai, an influential Chinese in that colony.

Their aim was to persuade Li Hongzhang to declare independence from the Qing. Responding to an invitation by Li’s staff, Sun journeyed to Hong Kong, but, fearing a trap, he did not go ashore. Instead, he was represented by Miyazaki and two other Japanese at the meeting, which proved fruitless.

Previously, Sun had made contact with bandits and secret societies in Guangdong. These forces began a revolt in Huizhou (present-day Huiyang in Guangdong) in October 1900. The campaign, the second of 10 claimed by Sun between 1895 and 1911, lasted 12 days.

Founding of the United League
The year 1903 marked a significant turning point in Sun’s career; from then on, his following came increasingly from the educated class, the most prestigious and influential group in China. For this decisive change Sun owed much to two factors: the steady decline of the Qing dynasty and the powerful propaganda of Liang Qichao, a reformist who fled to Japan in 1898, founded a Chinese press, and turned it into an instant success.
Liang did not actually oppose the Qing regime, but his attacks on Cixi, the empress dowager, who effectively ruled the country, served to undermine the regime and make revolution the only logical choice. As a consequence, Sun’s stock rose steadily among the Chinese students abroad. In 1904 he was able to establish several revolutionary cells in Europe, and in 1905 he became head of a revolutionary coalition, the United League (Tongmenghui), in Tokyo. For the next three years the society propagandized effectively through its mouthpiece, “People’s Journal” (Minbao).

The rise in Sun’s fortune increased many of his difficulties. The United League was very loosely organized, and Sun had no control over the individual members. Worse still, all the revolts Sun and the others organized ended in failure. The members fell into despair, and outside financial contributions declined. Furthermore, as a result of pressures exercised by the Qing, foreign governments increasingly shunned Sun.

  In 1907 the Japanese government gave him a sum of money and asked him to leave the country. A year later French Indochina, where Sun had hatched several plots, banned him completely. Hong Kong and several other territories were similarly out of his reach.

In the circumstances, Sun spent a year in 1909–10 touring Europe and the United States. Returning to Asia in June 1910, he left for the West again in December after a meeting with other revolutionaries, in which they decided to make a massive effort to capture Guangzhou.

This time Sun raised more money in Canada and the United States, but the uprising of April 27 in Guangzhou (known as the March 29 Revolution, because of its date in the Chinese calendar) fared no better than the earlier plots. The possibility of revolutionary success seemed more remote than ever.

But help was to come from the Qing. If only for self-preservation, the court had sponsored reform since 1901.

In the next few years it reorganized the army, instituted a school system, abolished the civil-service examinations based on traditional Chinese scholarship, reconstructed many government organs, and convened provincial and national assemblies.
The educated class nevertheless remained unsatisfied with the tempo of change, and the regime was rapidly losing its grip over the situation.

The revolution of 1911
In 1911 the Qing decided to nationalize all the trunk railways, thus incurring the wrath of local vested interests. Armed rebellion broke out in the province of Sichuan, and the court exposed itself to further attacks by failing to suppress it. In October of the same year a local revolutionary group in Wuhan, one of many in China by this time, began another rebellion, which, in spite of its lack of coordination, unexpectedly managed to overthrow the provincial government. Its success inspired other provincial secessions.

Sun Yat-sen learned of the Wuhan revolution from the newspapers while he was in Denver, Colo. He returned to Shanghai in December and was elected provisional president by delegates meeting in Nanjing. Knowing that his regime was weak, Sun made a deal with Yuan Shikai (Yüan Shih-k’ai), an imperial minister who had been entrusted with full power by the court. On Feb. 12, 1912, the emperor abdicated; the next day Sun resigned, and on the 14th Yuan was elected his successor.


Sun Yat-sen
Later struggles
In September, Yuan appointed Sun director-general of railway development. Their entente might have lasted if Song Jiaoren, who had reorganized the Alliance Society into the Nationalist Party and was serving as its head, had not been assassinated in March 1913, reportedly at Yuan’s instigation. This precipitated a second revolution, in which Sun opposed Yuan. When the campaign failed, Sun fled once again to Japan. While there, he unavailingly sought Japanese aid by promising vast concessions in China, and he also alienated many revolutionaries by requiring them to take an oath of personal allegiance to him. He was also criticized for marrying his secretary, Song Qingling (Soong Ch’ing-ling), in October 1915, without divorcing his first wife.

A combination of internal opposition and external pressures defeated Yuan in 1916. The next year Sun went from Shanghai to Guangdong to launch a movement against the premier, Duan Qirui (Tuan Ch’i-jui). Elected generalissimo of a separatist regime in July, Sun had to resign and leave for Shanghai toward the middle of 1918, when he lost the support of Lu Rongting, the military overlord of Guangdong.

Earlier, Lu had agreed to Sun’s gaining control over 20 battalions of armed guards if the forces would remain outside Guangdong. Accepting this condition, Sun appointed Chen Jiongming (Ch’ien Chiung-ming) as the commander and dispatched his men to Fujian. By persuading Chen to fight Lu, Sun found his way back to office for another 16 months, at the end of which Chen turned against him, and Sun had to leave for Shanghai again. From that sanctuary, he wooed the troops from Guangxi and Yunnan, and with their help he again returned to Guangzhou. In February 1923 he installed himself as generalissimo of a new regime.


Sun Yat-sen
  Meanwhile, a new factor had risen in Sun’s political life. Unsuccessful at obtaining aid from the West and Japan, he looked increasingly to the Soviet government, which had come to power in Russia in 1917. A Soviet diplomat, Adolf Joffe, visited Sun in Shanghai in both 1922 and 1923. On the latter occasion the two issued the Sun-Joffe Manifesto declaring that the communist system was not suitable for China, that Russia intended to give up its privileges there, and that Russia had no intention of extending its influence over Outer Mongolia. At Soviet prodding, the Chinese Communist Party resolved to cooperate with the Nationalists.

In October 1923, Mikhail Borodin, a representative of the Comintern (Communist International), arrived at Guangzhou and soon gained Sun’s confidence. Early in 1924 Sun reorganized the Nationalist Party as a tightly disciplined body with authority descending from the top to the lower levels on the model of the Soviet Communist Party. Under his directive a party congress elected three communists to its central executive committee and approved the establishment of a military academy (of which Sun appointed Chiang Kai-shek [Jiang Jieshi] president). Part of his party-building efforts were a series of lectures Sun delivered on his own doctrine, the Three Principles of the People.

Although these actions strengthened the Nationalists, there was still considerable opposition to Sun’s authority when he died of cancer in Beijing in March 1925. His coffin remained uninterred in a temple in Xishan until 1929, when it was moved to a mausoleum in Nanjing.

Sun’s political doctrines are summarized in his Three Principles of the People (nationalism, democracy, and people’s livelihood—the last involving the regulation of private capital and “equalizing land rights”) and his Plan for National Reconstruction, which explained basic parliamentary procedures, attacked the traditional Chinese saying that to know is easier than to do, and set forth a grandiose plan for China’s industrialization, concocted by Sun without much help from engineers or economists.

Although sanctified by his followers, Sun’s doctrine was not his major strength. All contemporary sources attribute to him a magnetic personality, a great capacity for tolerating others’ weaknesses, a singular dedication to the pursuit of power, and a knowledge of the West unequaled by that of any of his political rivals. Perhaps the last factor is the most important, for it is this that set Sun apart and made him the symbol of Chinese modernization. Quite fittingly, the Chinese communists call him “a pioneer of the revolution.”

Yi Chu Wang

Encyclopædia Britannica

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