The Reign of Terror and Robespierre

Born in 1758 in Arras, France, Maximilien Robespierre met tragedy early on with the death of his parents. Learning how to read and write, he eventually obtained a scholarship to secondary school where he learned about the Roman Republic and the Enlightenment.

What was the Diplomatic Revolution of 1756?

In 1756, a reversal of longstanding alliances occurred, setting the stage for conflict in continental Europe and the New World for the next decade. The War of Austrian Succession saw France and Prussia battle Great Britain and Austria. By the end of 1756, France was allied with Austria and Great Britain allied with Prussia.

War in Silesia Begins

In 1740, upon the death of her father, Maria Theresa of the Hapsburg Monarchy attempted to seize the throne as Queen of Hungary and Bohemia, Duchess of Parma and Archduchess of Austria. Her husband, Francis I, Duke of Lorraine, was to become the Holy Roman Emperor. According to the Pragmatic Sanction of 1713, it was legal for a woman to succeed to the Austrian throne. However, Prussia’s King Frederick II, laid claim to the Silesian region, traditionally controlled by the Hapsburgs.

War in Silesia Ends

Maria Theresa, heir to the Hapsburg line, had taken control of the Austrian throne. This angered many who thought they had genealogical rights to the crown. Seizing on this, Prussian forces invaded the Silesian region of Austria, doubling the country’s size.

How Did the Seven Years War Start?

In the wake of the War of Austrian Succession, the political map of Europe was redrawn during the Diplomatic Revolution of 1756. France, Austria, and Russia, despite being century-old enemies, joined forces in an alliance against Prussia and Great Britain. Empress Maria Theresa, in an attempt to shore up her successful modernization of the Austrian […]

Seven Years War Timeline

After the war began with the Austrians and French battling the Prussians and the British, the Seven Years’ War escalated into a conflict between colonial empires. Soon, new nations would become embroiled in the conflict.

Who Won the Seven Years War?

Spain entered the war on January 4 in response to British aggressions in the Caribbean. Conflicts in other theaters had taken their toll on European forces, most notably Great Britain. During the course of the war, the Crown had expanded its colonies in Asia and the Caribbean, while at the same time, heavily damaging France’s influence in North America. However, these engagements stretched Great Britain’s armies and navies very thin and for a period, it appeared that the British were on the verge of removing forces from the European continent.

Who Established the National Constituent Assembly?

When the Estates-General convened on May 5, 1789, the deliberations became deadlocked within one day. The Third Estate’s representation attempted to make the whole body more effective, however, the group decided to begin meeting separately from the Estates-General on May 11. They established the Communes, eventually letting members of the First Estate join as well. On June 17, the Communes was declared the National Assembly with a vote of 490 to 90. As the First Estate of clergy began to dissipate into the Assembly, a political agenda unfolded as well as legislative action.