revolutions of 1848

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revolutions of 1848,

in European history. The February RevolutionFebruary Revolution,
1848, French revolution that overthrew the monarchy of Louis Philippe and established the Second Republic. General dissatisfaction resulted partly from the king's increasingly reactionary policy, carried out after 1840 by François Guizot, and partly
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 in France gave impetus to a series of revolutionary explosions in Western and Central Europe. However the new French Republic did not support these movements. The stage was set when the unrest caused by the economic effects of severe crop failures in 1846–47 merged with the discontent caused by political repression of liberal and nationalist aspirations. In the German states, popular demonstrations and uprisings (Feb.–Mar., 1848) led to the dismissal of unpopular ministers and the calling of a national parliament (see Frankfurt ParliamentFrankfurt Parliament,
1848–49, national assembly convened at Frankfurt on May 18, 1848, as a result of the liberal revolution that swept the German states early in 1848. The parliament was called by a preliminary assembly of German liberals in Mar.
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) to draft a constitution for a united Germany. While the constitution was debated at length, rulers of the German states were able to recover their authority. By 1849, the Frankfurt Parliament and the provisional government it established had collapsed and the old order was restored. The revolution within the Austrian empire was one of initial success and subsequent defeat. In contrast to the situation in Germany, however, revolutionists in the Hapsburg domains (see AustriaAustria
, Ger. Österreich [eastern march], officially Republic of Austria, federal republic (2005 est. pop. 8,185,000), 32,374 sq mi (83,849 sq km), central Europe.
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, HungaryHungary,
Hung. Magyarország, republic (2005 est. pop. 10,007,000), 35,919 sq mi (93,030 sq km), central Europe. Hungary borders on Slovakia in the north, on Ukraine in the northeast, on Romania in the east, on Slovenia, Croatia, and Serbia in the south, and on
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, and BohemiaBohemia,
Czech Čechy, historic region (20,368 sq mi/52,753 sq km) and former kingdom, in W and central Czech Republic. Bohemia is bounded by Austria in the southeast, by Germany in the west and northwest, by Poland in the north and northeast, and by Moravia in the
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) demanded less central authority and a more autonomous role for the national groups. Lack of cooperation among the revolutionary movements and the loyalty of the armies to old authorities permitted the suppression of the insurgents by armed might. In Italy (see RisorgimentoRisorgimento
[Ital.,=resurgence], in 19th-century Italian history, period of cultural nationalism and of political activism, leading to unification of Italy. Roots of the Risorgimento
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) the demand for expulsion of the Austrians and for national unification found a champion in King Charles AlbertCharles Albert,
1798–1849, king of Sardinia (1831–49, see Savoy, house of). Because he had not been entirely unsympathetic to the revolutionary movement of 1821 in Sardinia, Charles Albert developed an ambiguous political reputation prior to acceding to the throne in
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 of Sardinia, but again the revolutions were put down by Austrian armies. The revolutions of 1848 failed notably because three kinds of demands—social and economic, liberal, and national—were not easily reconciled. This is illustrated in France by the Socialists BlancBlanc, Louis
, 1811–82, French socialist politician and journalist and historian. In his noted Organisation du travail (1840, tr. Organization of Work,
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 and Albert on the one side, and the Liberal Republicans MarieMarie, Alexandre Thomas
, 1795–1870, French minister of public works. He served in the revolutionary provisional government of 1848 and in the executive committee that replaced it (Apr., 1848).
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 and AragoArago, Dominique François
, 1786–1853, French physicist and astronomer. He is noted for his discoveries in magnetism and optics as well as for his astronomical observations. Arago was an ardent supporter of the wave theory of light.
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 on the other. Middle-class moderates like LamartineLamartine, Alphonse Marie Louis de
, 1790–1869, French poet, novelist, and statesman. After a trip to Italy and a brief period in the army, Lamartine began to write and achieved immediate success with his first publication, Méditations poétiques (1820).
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 gained control of the revolutionary movements and resisted the more radical demands of the lower classes, thus losing much of the popular support that was essential to their success. The results of the uprisings were the spread of parliamentary governments, the extension of manhood suffrage in France (and briefly in Austria), the abolition of manorialism in Central Europe, the beginnings of the German and Italian unification movements, and the establishment of Hungary as an equal partner with Austria under Hapsburg rule.

Bibliography

See studies by Sir L. B. Namier (1948), P. N. Stearns (1974), M. Agulhon (1983), and M. Rapport (2009).

References in periodicals archive ?
We greet the people and government of Hungary headed by President Janos Ader on the occasion of its 1848 Revolutions Memorial Day.
The use of the word "Spring", with the allusions to the 1848 Revolutions and the so-called Prague Spring of 1968, was widely used initially as a positive reference, indicating potentially major movement towards self-determination and opportunity in the Arab world.
Despite fiscal challenges, the imperial government supported the expansion of transport and trade, although the pace of change failed to keep up with the demands of middle and peasant classes and led directly to the short-lived 1848 revolutions.
The Know-Nothings expressed considerable venom for Germans fleeing from repression of the 1848 revolutions that threatened to bring down monarchies and usher in republican government in Europe.
Europe did not become a paradise just after the 1848 revolutions.
It has taken a little longer than it did after the 1848 revolutions in Europe, but on the third anniversary of the Egyptian revolution we can definitely say that the "Arab Spring" is finished.
Gwynne DyerIt has taken a little longer than it did after the 1848 revolutions in Europe, but on the third anniversary of the Egyptian revolution we can definitely say that the "Arab Spring" is finished.
Superb, very moving account of the 1848 revolutions in Italy and just why the Habsburgs came to be so hated
The 1848 Revolutions and their aftermath, as well as his links with international committees and conversations with political exiles in London, led O'Brien to join more actively in debates about Europe.
His accents often reflect sympathies: the nineteenth-century anglophile reformer, Count Istvam Szechenyi's passion for English-style horse-racing receives twice the coverage of the 1848 revolutions in Vienna, Munich, and Berlin, combined.
The fourth part, the longest with nine entries, looks at 'secularity, reform and modernity': church and state, the impact of Darwin, conservative thought after the 1848 revolutions, modern concepts of liberty, political economy, German socialism and social democracy, Russian political thought, European political thought as it affected and was affected by the wider world, and the role of Empire.
The dates coincide with the rise and heyday of Realism, a style engendered by the 1848 revolutions and the inability of either Romanticism or Classicism to adequately signify the political situation.