The Age of Revolutions 1830 to 1848

• The period between 1830–1848 is symbolised with the age of revolutions. The first upheaval took place in France in July 1830. The Bourbon kings were now overthrown by liberal revolutionaries. Louis Philippe was made a constitutional monarch. Belgium got separated from the United Kingdom of the Netherlands.

• The Greek war of Independence started in 1821.

• It created nationalist feelings among the educated people in Europe.

• Their struggle for Independence began in 1821 and got support from the Greeks living in other European countries.

• Finally, the Treaty of Constantinople of 1832 recognized Greece as an independent nation.

THE ROMANTIC IMAGINATION AND NATIONAL FEELING

• Romanticism, cultural movements develop a sense of nationalism through art, poetry, stories, music and past experiences.

• They promote emotions and mystical feelings to create a sense of oneness and love for nation. Johann Gottfried Herder, a German philosopher created a spirit of nationalism through folk songs, folk poetry and folk dances.

• Karol Kurpinski of Poland created nationalist feeling through his operas, music and folk dances.

• Language too played a major role in developing nationalist sentiments.

• Poland was occupied by Russia and people fought for their language and culture.

HUNGER, HARDSHIP AND POPULAR REVOLT

• The 1830s were the years of great economic hardship in Europe. The first half of the nineteenth century saw an enormous increase in population all over Europe which gave rise to unemployment.

• Population from rural areas migrated to the cities to live in overcrowded slums.

• Small producers in towns were often faced with stiff competition from imports of cheap machine-made goods from England.

• In those regions of Europe where the aristocracy still enjoyed power, peasants struggled under the burden of feudal dues and obligations. The rise of food prices or a year of bad harvest led to widespread pauperism in town and country.

• Food shortages and widespread unemployment brought the population of Paris out on the roads.


THE REVOLUTIONS OF THE LIBERALS: 1848

• In 1848, a revolution led by educated middle class professionals, businessmen, and prosperous artisans.

• They demanded a creation of a nation state on parliamentary principles, a constitution, freedom of press and freedom of association.

• On 18 May 1848, 831 elected representatives marched in the Frankfurt parliament in St. Paul Church to draft the Constitution, headed by monarchy.

• The Friedrich Wilhelm IV, King of Prussia rejected the crown; the assembly was disbanded.

• Political rights to men were controversial.

• Women had formed their own political associations, founded newspapers and taken part in political meetings and demonstrations. Despite this they were not given the right to vote.

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