and “revolutionary era” came to an end with the end of the revolution in 1848. Since then, there has been no major revolution in Europe except during the war. Although the problems and goals raised by the revolution were not solved and achieved in time, they successfully became an integral part of the later political and social order.
French February Revolution
the news of the revolution in Paris shocked the Habsburg dynasty. This is an ancient dynasty, whose influence spread to the whole central Europe. Habsburg royal family members include Germans, Hungarians, Czechs, Slovaks, poles, Ruthenians, Romans, Slovenians, Serbs, Croats and Italians. They occupied most of the territory of Germany and the entire Italian peninsula. The Prime Minister of this dynasty, the elder Clemens metterne, dominated the fate of the whole dynasty. He opposed liberalism and nationalism.
Louis Philippe’s abdication stimulated the Magyar aristocracy in Hungary, and many people feared and hated the German invasion of Hungarian territory. On March 15, 1848, under the influence of radical journalist Louis Kossuth, the Mazar parliament issued a new constitution and established Hungary’s autonomy by taking advantage of the Vienna uprising. A few weeks later, the Czech Republic (Bohemia) followed suit.
at the same time, the old regime in Vienna collapsed. On March 13, students and workers rioted. Metterne, a typical representative of the post period, fled to Britain. The riots spread throughout the Empire, and uprisings broke out in Germany and Italy. These uprisings forced the Habsburg dynasty to implement a number of reforms, but these measures were only a drop in the bucket in the face of the revolution that spread to the whole dynasty.
the Hungarian Revolution
the Habsburg dynasty successfully suppressed the revolution
the revolutionary wave reached its peak in the early summer, and then began to subside slowly. The decision of Habsburg dynasty to liberate farmers accelerated this process. The abolition of serfdom calmed the anger of farmers and cooled the enthusiasm of conservative farmers for the revolution.
in the Czech region, racial suspicion finally aborted the revolution. After the Czech Republic and Germany withdrew from the revolutionary ranks, commander Alfred windischgratz led an army loyal to the royal family and re established the royal authority. In mid June, Wendy schgretz shelled Prague and brutally suppressed the Prague uprising.
in March 1848, the Habsburg dynasty also broke out an uprising in the territory of Italy: Lombardy (Milan) and Venetia (Venice) and declared independence. Carlo Alberto, the ruler of Sardinia, Italy’s independent kingdom, supported the independence of these regions and declared war on Austria. The revolution broke out in Parma, Modena, Tuscany and Sicily, which quickly announced their alliance with Austria. However, this did not defeat the Austrians. In July, the Austrian army defeated Carlo Alberto in the battle of custozza, re establishing the rule of the Habsburg dynasty in Lombardy. In 1849, the Habsburg dynasty defeated Carlo Alberto again and brought vinesia back into the imperial territory.
the next failure was the Hungarian Revolution. In the summer of 1848, the extreme chauvinism of the Mazar people aroused opposition from other ethnic groups in Hungary. Croats are particularly averse to Mazars. In September of the same year, the Vienna government appointed Joseph jellachich as the governor of Croatia to lead the Croatian people against the Mazars. Soon war was declared against the hasburg people. In early 1849, the Hungarians defeated Austria and its allies and declared independence. The new king of Austria, Francis Joseph, sought help from Russia. Europe’s most conservative ruler, Russian Czar Nicholas I, quickly seized the opportunity to suppress the revolution. He sent 140000 troops to Hungary and defeated the Mazars in August 1849.
at the same time, the Vienna Revolution ended in failure. At the beginning of the revolution, the extreme social and economic needs and unrestrained street violence frightened the Vienna bourgeoisie. They supported political reform, but hated social revolution and social chaos. The rapid disintegration of the Empire caused people to think deeply about the revolution. As the riots continued, the needs of students and workers became more and more extreme, and the middle class supporting the revolution gradually decreased. For many people, it is very attractive to return to the situation before the revolution. After the riots broke out again in October 1848, the middle class finally decided to abandon the revolution. At this time, Wendy schgretz launched a military counterattack. At the end of October, the Habsburg dynasty took control of Vienna again.
revolutionaries in Berlin on March 19, 1848.
the Prussian Revolution ended completely.
the 1848 revolution also spread to German speaking areas. News of revolution continued to come from Paris and Vienna. Prussia’s economic recession was serious, and Prussian King Frederick William IV was unwilling to implement reform. All these led to riots in Prussia. The king quickly chose to compromise, but the army opened fire on the demonstrators, killing and wounding dozens of people and causing chaos. Although the Prussian army controlled the overall situation, the frightened king ordered the army to withdraw from Berlin, and he unknowingly became a prisoner of the people. Under the pressure of the masses, Frederick William appointed moderate liberals to form a cabinet and agreed to elect the National Assembly responsible for writing the constitution.
in May 1848, the National Assembly convened, but the real power was still in the hands of the army. Frederick William gradually regained power. He refused to hand over any authoritarian power. Due to the slow process of the National Assembly election, in June of the same year, the lower classes in Berlin once again flocked to the streets to demonstrate. Seeing this, many moderates who had hoped for appropriate political reform began to stop supporting the revolution and expect the king and the armyIt can restore legal authority and social order. In November of the same year, Frederick William decided to resolutely crack down on the remnants of the revolution, dissolve the national assembly and recall the army to Berlin. The small-scale commotion was quickly suppressed and the Prussian revolution came to an end.
the 1848 revolution had a far-reaching impact.
although the 1848 revolution failed to establish a new political structure, it was a key event in European history in the 19th century. For nearly 60 years since the French Revolution in 1789, Europe has been experiencing uprisings and revolutions. However, the “revolutionary era” came to an end with the end of the revolution in 1848. Since then, there has been no major revolution in Europe except during the war. Many of the objectives of the revolutionaries have also been gradually achieved. People no longer accept the traditional political views such as aristocratic privilege and divine power. The authoritarian government began to make appropriate compromises to some social groups in order to avoid possible riots. Therefore, the leaders who suppressed the revolution began to promote the implementation of many revolutionary ideas.
1848 was the beginning of an era. Although the problems and goals raised by the revolution were not solved and achieved in time, they successfully became an integral part of the later political and social order. Socialism, political democracy, liberalism and nationalism have promoted the development of modern political consciousness. As the country became more tightly organized and the economy became more prosperous, the middle class abandoned the revolutionary view, making gradual reform possible. The peasants’ revolutionary intention was no longer strong, because the government abolished serfdom and met their basic needs. The lower class began to have political consciousness and was able to make timely calls for reform. Workers form trade unions and the right to universal suffrage is accepted by more people.
1848 was called “the spring of the people” and “the spring of the nation”. Many nationalities regarded this year as a time of National Awakening. These changes did not happen overnight, but the 1848 revolution did lay the foundation for the transition from a feudal society to an industrial society with a modern state structure. In this regard, the 1848 revolution did change the world, although the pace of change was not as rapid as the revolutionaries imagined.