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Seven Years War

Page history last edited by PBworks 13 years, 11 months ago

Weeks 15-17: Rise of the West IDs


7 Eleven

(Seven Years, Eleven Countries)

The Seven Years War


Major Combatants: Prussia, Great Britain (including the colonies, British East India Company, and Ireland), Hanover, Austria, France, the Russian Empire, Sweden, and Saxony. Spain and Portugal were drawn into the conflict later.


Starting date: 1754 and 1756


Ending date: 1763, with the Treaty of Paris


Causes: Heated colonial struggle between Great Britain and France, fear of a British/Prussian dominance, and the Jumonville affair (Washington's Native American ally Tanacharison brutally killed the wounded French commander, Ensign Jumonville, by tomahawk).


Location: Europe, Africa, India, North America, and Philippines


Major Leaders: Fredrick the Great of Prussia; George Washington; Jeffery Amherst; John Burgoyne; Charles Cornwallis; George Sackville; Richard Howe; George Brydges; Louis Antoine de Conde; Johann Kalb


Treaty of Paris Key Points: Exchange of territory (see below for more details)


This site shows the connections... it said it the best, so I copied it in its entirety:http://members.cox.net/johnahamill/sevenyears.html


The Importance of the War


The Seven Years War, or the French and Indian War in North America, had a great impact on world history in several ways.


1) Britain conquered Canada. The American colonists no longer needed protection from Britain, and the attempt by Parliament to tax the colonists to help pay for the war sparked the American Revolution.


2) France and Spain embarked upon a major naval buildup, made possible by the retention by France of fishing rights off the Canadian coast. Stronger Bourbon navies made possible the American victory in the Revolutionary War.


3) The debts France incurred in this war and later in the American Revolution helped cause the French Revolution. The humiliation of the army led to reforms and innovations which were later used with great success by Napoleon.


4) Prussia survived the war and retained Silesia despite enormous odds and confirmed its place as an important European power. After the Napoleonic Wars, Prussia increased its power relative to Austria, and in 1870 Prussia united Germany.


5) Russia showed itself to be a major power capable of enormous influence. It gained greater influence in Poland, and this would eventually lead to its partition.


6) By its lack of participation, The Netherlands showed itself to be in relative decline. Smaller states like The Netherlands and Saxony were becoming increasingly vulnerable. Despite its glorious past, Spain confirmed that it was a weak client state of France with minimal military power.


7) Britain confirmed itself as the world's dominant naval and economic power and a force to be reckoned with in the European balance of power. Britain became the dominant European power in India enabling it to eventually conquer all of India and used its resources to further expand the empire. Some non-"Eurocentric" historians believe British control of India made the Industrial Revolution possible.


The Defeat of the French Fireships attacking the British Fleet at Anchor before Quebec, 28 June 1759

Treaty of Paris Synopsis: The end of the war came in 1763 when British and French leaders signed the Treaty of Paris. The treaty called for numerous exchanges of territory. France was given the choice of keeping either New France or its Caribbean island colony Guadeloupe, and chose the latter to retain one of its sources of sugar. This suited the British as well, as their own Caribbean islands already supplied ample sugar, but with the handover of New France they gained control of all lands in North America east of the Mississippi River with the exception of New Orleans. However, the end of the threat from New France to the British American colonies and the subsequent reorganization of those colonies would later become one of the enabling triggers for the American Revolution. Spain lost control of Florida to Great Britain, but received New Orleans and the Louisiana Territory west of the Mississippi River from the French. France also returned Minorca to the British. European boundaries were returned to their pre-war states, by the Treaty of Hubertusburg (February 1763). This meant that Prussia was confirmed in its possession of Silesia. Prussia had survived the combined assault of its numerous neighbors, each larger than itself. According to some historians, Prussia gained enormously in influence at the cost of the Holy Roman Empire. This influence marks the beginning of the modern German state, an event at least as influential as the colonial empire Great Britain had gained.

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