Napoleon At Waterloo: A Comparative Analysis

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Over the course of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries (1689-1815), Britain and France were engaged in what many historians refer to as the ‘second hundred years’ wars.’ Although actually a series of wars and conflicts, the period was characterized by military engagement and political competition. Beyond the politics and military, though, one could argue that these conflicts also involved clashes of ideologies, religions, societies, and cultures. The defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815 proved to be a watershed or turning point in the Anglo-French relationship. In the post-Napoleonic world, France and England would increasingly turn towards the possibility of alliance and peace. Many factors led to these changes which brought unity …show more content…
The French Revolution brought new understandings of the idea of nationalism and political governance that altered the layout of the European atmosphere. These forces became interwoven with industrialization and imperialism that influenced the French and English positions in Europe and their perceptions of one another. One also finds a growing sense of anglophilia (or at least toleration for the English as valuable allies) in the French government following 1830 July Revolution in France, specifically embodied in the King Louis-Philippe. Although anglophobia continued to prove somewhat problematic, French leaders, such as Louis Napoleon, increasingly realized an alliance with Britain could be used to further their own political and territorial ambitions. Arguably, the most central political developments that promoted united was the ‘eastern question,’ the downfall of the Ottoman Empire and the rise of Russian interests, and the ‘great game,’ the rivalry between Russia and Britain. France and Britain would become allies to combat Russian expansionary ideas in the east in what is referred to as the Crimean War. These are just a few political changes of the nineteenth century that instigated closer alliance between Britain and France, what is referred to as an entente

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