1848: The Year of Revolutions

Historical Context Essay

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The revolutionary movement of 1848 was a watershed in European history that pitted democratic-minded groups and classes against “the old Europe” of “the Holy Alliance” (established at the Congress of Vienna, 1815) of Church and monarchy with important consequences for future generations in military, economic, and cultural terms. With the first and second French Revolutions (1789; 1830) as a foil, some minor trouble was already afoot in Switzerland (


, 1847), a peasant rising in Galicia (1846) and Southwest Germany (1847) before the initial uprising in Sicily (January 1848) and the fall of the French monarchy in Paris (February 1848), a signal for political turmoil in most of Europe, successively engulfing Prussia, Austria, Poland, Hungary, Bohemia, and Italy. The…

2991 words

Citation: Hoffmeister, Gerhart. "1848: The Year of Revolutions". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 18 November 2004 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=4, accessed 17 April 2024.]

4 1848: The Year of Revolutions 2 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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