The Belligerents

  • Matthew Hughes
  • William J. Philpott


Since the defeat of Napoleon in 1815 European peace had been maintained by means of a ‘balance of power’ between the five so-called ‘Great Powers’, Great Britain, France, Russia, Austria and Prussia. Tensions were resolved through international conferences, creating a ‘Concert of Europe’. The so-called ‘congress system’ functioned effectively until the middle of the nineteenth century, when a series of Great Power wars redrew the map of central and southern Europe, and upset the delicate balance of power.


Imperial Rivalry Ottoman Empire Italian Colonial Imperial Adventure German Nationalism 
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Copyright information

© Matthew Hughes & William J. Philpott 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthew Hughes
  • William J. Philpott

There are no affiliations available

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