Foreign Policy
Foreign Policy

Austria, 1849-1866 : Foreign Policy

In the years after 1849, the administration in Vienna had to be extremely cautious. It faced not only a population largely resenting state and government (like in Prussia), but many regional populations which wanted to establish political units based on ethnicity.
When Russia, during the CRIMEAN WAR, faced a coalition consisting of Britain, France, Savoy and the Ottoman Empire, Austria did not come to Russia's aid and deeply disappointed the Russians which were to become Austria's archenemy. Austria's position in Italy became more and more precarious. In 1859 Savoy's prime minister CAVOUR had provoked Austria to declare war, France came to Savoy's aid, the Austrians were defeated in the battles of MAGENTA and SOLFERINO. Austria had to cede LOMBARDY to Savoy and allow the Hambsburg secundogenitures in Italy to be overturned by revolutions, to allow the unification of Italy to unfold.

All through the 1850es and into the 1860es, Austria was preoccupied with problems at home, unable to exercise the leadership it was expected to provide as the president of the German Federation. When the Danish government, in open violation of the London Protocol, in 1863 undertook another attempt to integrate Schleswig into a centralised Danish Kingdom, Austria joined Prussia in the GERMAN-DANISH WAR (1864). The allied Prussian and Austrian armies easily defeated the Danes, which ceded Schleswig, Holstein and Lauenburg. Holstein, except the region around Kiel, was placed under Austrian administration.
In Germany, Prussia had provided active leadership, in the formation of the German Customs Union of 1834 and in the German-Danish War of 1864.

The Naval Battle of Lissa (Vis), July 20th 1866, from the Lissa Home Page by Michael Organ, illustrated
Prusso-Austrian War of 1866, from aeiou
German-Danish War 1864, from aeiou
Naval Battle of Lissa, from aeiou
Admiral Wilhelm von Tegetthoff, from aeiou
Lombardo-Venetian Kingdom, from aeiou
Sardinian Wars, 1849, 1859, from aeiou
Olmuetzer Punktation 1850 ("humiliation" of Olmütz, from aeiou
Der Deutsch-Österreichische Krieg von 1866, Anlass (cause), Verlauf (course of events), Ergebnis (result), from Reichseinigungskriege, in German
DOCUMENTS Extradition Convention Between the United States and Austria-Hungary; July 3, 1856, from Avalon Project at Yale Law School; Agreement Concerning Admission of Tobacco Between the United States and Austria-Hungary; December 24, 1863, from Avalon Project at Yale Law School
REFERENCE Schwartzenberg and Bach, 1849-1859 (pp.83-94), The Struggle Between Federalism and Centralism : October Diploma and February Patent, 1860-1861 (pp.95-108), Constitutional Absolutism : the System of Schmerling, 1961-1865 (pp.109-122), The End of Old Austria 1865-1866 (pp.123-129), from A.J.P. Taylor, The Habsburg Monarchy, 1809-1918 , Chicago : UP (1948) 1976

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted in 2000, last revised on November 12th 2004

Click here to go Home
Click here to go to Information about KMLA, WHKMLA, the author and webmaster
Click here to go to Statistics

Impressum · Datenschutz