Prussia, Poland, France discussed on The Napoleonic Quarterly


And the russians are working on with respect to what's going to become the third partition of poland and is is going to be very concerning for Frederick wound the second in his court because it looks like even though the prussian army has played such an important role in in crushing to polish uprising. Alongside the russians. This deal is going to kind of be an entente between austria and russia Which could lead to kind of you know isolating Prussia in fares in central and eastern europe and kind of leaving them out of this final partition. So how does that then lead to the decision to drop out of the with fronts right so they are looking for an opportunity to bring this commitment. You know this war that they've committed to against france to an end so that they can you know kind of turn their direction east and get back in in in affairs going on in poland So the war. There's kind of within the prussian court between Some factions of the court who want to maintain a commitment to the war against france because of brushing prestige and kind of still being part of this crusade but they are losing out increasingly to the dominant faction at court. Which is going to influence. Frederick william which says look we're committing too much to this and we need to. We need to not be engaged in this war anymore because of Affairs that matter more to bus in eastern europe because precious priority throughout a always being to the east rather than to the west and so essentially. This is just a continuation of that. But it's it leads them to conclude that actually they've just go to stop fighting fronts now right and this is this has been a feature of kind of prussian policy really for the last year And it's generated a lot of tension already between them and their allies or partners within the first coalition so this is kind of a culmination of pressure removing itself from the war While trying to save as much as possible but also trying to pursue its own its own understanding of its own self interests. The negotiations that ended up with the basil treaty. They actually started back in the late fall of seventeen ninety four. They started rather haphazardly. Because neither side really knew exactly what kind of terms it was pushing for and so it takes a while for that to kind of gain clarity. And then once the information comes in about what. The austrians and the russians are working on in poland. That's when the prussians really committed to making peace and cutting their losses against france and coming up with a deal that they can live with. And what were the terms. Who was the i was going to say with us. It loses to party so clearly fraud to the witness. But i suppose the question is how bad was it for prussia. Well actually for prussia Both sides both. The french and the prussians could kind of seed themselves as winners in a sense. I mean it's not it's not definitive in in some ways Because some of the terms have to be put off until a subsequent peace deal because it impacts the holy roman empire but basically the deal that comes out. In april april fifth seventeen ninety five france agrees that it will not occupy any german territory and he prussian territory on the right bank of the rhine so east of the rhine but that it will while the war is going on and this is kind of in the indie main treaty of basel. It will hold onto territory on the left bank of the rhine including the little territories. That prussia has along the left bank of the rhine until the conclusion of a general peace with the empire but there was a secret clause within the treaty of basel. Which is really the most important which basically gets a prussia to commit to accepting francis permanent retention of all of the left bank territories on the rhine provided that that was kind of settled at a future peace conference and prussia would be adequately compensated on the right bank of the rhine within those german states and also that the german princes who were going to lose their territory in the rhineland would be compensated in some form as well at some peace conference that would come at the end of the war well it wouldn't be a napoleonic french revolutionary era treaty without a secret article attached to it. So that's that's that's quite right and let's ask but i was going to ask about saxony but let me ask you about all of the various other statelets and and many kingdoms in early roman empire. Because it's not just pressure of course and you've covered off a few there. But how are they feeling. Just says the treaty. Basil is really important for the holy roman empire Another part of the kind of agreement at basel which is finalized in may involve this line of north german neutrality which basically sets up a line of neutrality running along the right bank of the rhine and then along the north bank of the mine river and that's going to be guaranteed by the prussian army And so it's giving prussia more and more powerful position in north germany kind of representing itself as the protector of north germany within the holy roman empire obviously rather than the austrians so you start to have those north german states including like hess which see this as a as a as a kind of opportunity to start to pull themselves out of the war as well and then you've got other german states like the southern german states that are also seeing what's happening and they're not necessarily ready to get out yet in seventeen ninety five but their commitment to the war is really starting to decline and australia ability to bind them to the coalition is really starting to be shaken by. You know the fact that the pressures pulling out australia's kind of not doing well militarily and is becoming you know diplomatically isolated. Now's the on the continent as the coalition starting to kind of fracture so that's germany But also in this quarter. We've got the piece of holland and the treaty of the hague being signed another another country dropping out right and that that The peace of holland in the treaty of the hague. This is all kind of happening. Simultaneous with the negotiations at basel. And it's a consequence. Obviously if the french conquest of the netherlands at the end of the seventeen ninety four campaign and and in january seventeen ninety five when you have the emergence of this new batavia ian Batavia in republic so Remember the the. Netherlands fell both as a result of a french invasion but also an internal revolution led by these revolutionary clubs in the major cities of the netherlands. And so that group day become kind of the founding fathers of this new batavia in republic. Many of them had their origins back in the patriot. Movement of the of the seventeen eighty s against against the dutch stockholder. So the question here is what is this new state going to going to be like. And how is it going to kind of relate with the french republic And so you know. Is it going to be treated an independent. Purely independent nation and like an ally of the french republic or is it going to be treated by the french as basically conquered land and you know annexed and so the leaders of the batavia republic. They declared themselves independent and they seek out a french Which will ultimately kind of coal us around the treaty of the hague But the treaty of the hague actually quite harsh toward the dutch and is actually more of a A sign of kind of how the french policies becoming more imperialistic. Because i mean they are. They're forced into a alliance with france where they're forced to declare war against england. They are occupied by the french. There's a twenty five thousand men army That occupies the netherlands and the dutch have to pay for the occupation. They have to accept a lot of the french financial policies. The french currency. So it's quite a way to treat a new ally and this is really where you start to see the emergence of this client. Stay system That you know you're going to see all across other parts of europe under napoleon zipping about the consonant. Now but now down to spain and and the the franco-spanish peace treaty is in the works in this quarter at least yeah so the basically the war The campaigning in the pure knees has essentially stopped after the french successes late. In seventeen ninety four they do kind of resume an offensive against spain in the spring of seventeen ninety five to kind of give them some final urging to come along and make peace. But if you think about it you know. The the french and the spanish have been historical. Allies in the eighteenth century was really an unnatural alliance between spain and britain and initially spain had not wanted to be a part of the war but obviously whenever The french execute the borbon king of france that angers the borbon the board bonds in spain. But as the word kinda played out a lot of tensions developed between the spanish and their partners in the coalition and the spanish were were not happy at all about seeing how the british were making gains in the mediterranean and the caribbean so again like with russia and like with a lot of these other states to spanish are viewing the war now less in kind of fierce ideological terms and especially this is true after the terror and they're starting to think about it more in terms of power politics. What's in their best interest and so overrule to sum up. This really is the three months in which the first coalition is clear has has collapsed basically. There's a strong sense of france being much more secure now at the end of this quarter to them at the start i say so i would say it's it's in some ways ironic because militarily the french military forces the french armies are in pretty bad shape actually after their successes in seventeen ninety four but in achieving those victories and carrying delta's offensives they really Quite exhausted themselves so they're having to take a moment of reprieve and kind of to recover but through these diplomatic efforts that the thermidor rain regime leading to directory is able to make yeah. They're putting themselves in a much better position where they're able to make deals with these states and in coming to terms with france All of these states and it's really important with respect to like prussia or.

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