By Henry A. Kissinger
The Napoleonic Wars have been through a nearly unparalleled century of political balance. a global Restored analyses the alliances shaped and treaties signed via the world's leaders in the course of the years 1812 to 1822, focussing at the personalities of the 2 major negotiators: Viscount Castlereagh, the British international secretary, and Prince von Metter- nich, his Austrian counterpart. Henry Kissinger explains how the turbulent dating among those males, the differing matters in their respective nations and the altering nature of international relations all motivated the ultimate form of the peace. initially released in 1957.
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Additional info for A World Restored: Metternich, Castlereagh and the Problems of Peace, 1812-1822
Yet it was this man, more than any other, who forged again a European connection for Britain, who maintained the Coalition, and negotiated the settlement which in its main outlines was to last for over fifty years. Psychologists may well ponder how it came about Irish peer, whose career had given no indication of profound conceptions, should become the most European of British statesmen. No man more different from his great protagonist, Metternich, that this Metternich was elegant, facile, rationalist; Castlereagh, solid, ponderous, pragmatic^the former was witty and eloquent, if somewhat pedantic; the latter cumbersome in expression, although effective in debate; Metternich was doctrinaire and devious; Castlereagh, matter-of-fact and direct.
But the King of Prussia refused to accept so patent an infraction of the "normal relations" of states and threatened to resist by force of arms. War was averted only by the precipitation of Napoleon, who marched troops through a section of Prussian territory and thereby brought on himself the wrath of Frederick William's outraged probity which he had never been able to earn as a conqueror bent on dominating Europe. Every thing seemed won. A Prussian negotiator was sent to Vienna to make final arrangements for a treaty of alliance; the Prussian army moved towards the flanks of the French forces invading Bohemia, Russian troops were traversing Poland.
But Napoleon does not appreciate the political aspect of guarantees; he aims at reality, at a surety. Thus 1 Oncken, n, p. 52. See also Luckwaldt, Oesterreich und Die Anfaenge Des Befreiungskrieges, (Berlin, 1898), p. 31. 3 A WORLD 22 RESTORED each usurpation becomes for him a guarantee of his strength and of his existence. In this sense he motivates each overthrow of a throne ... by the semblance of self-defence. "1 Thus, Metternich transcended the chasm between opposing legiti macies which characterizes revolutionary situations, by boldly using Napoleon's concept of legitimacy — the only one he recognized — against him.
A World Restored: Metternich, Castlereagh and the Problems of Peace, 1812-1822 by Henry A. Kissinger