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 (2015 est. pop. 8,679,000), 32,374 sq mi (83,849 sq km), central Europe.
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, HungaryHungary,
Hung. Magyarország, republic (2015 est. pop. 9,784,000), 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.


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

References in classic literature ?
He was a bookbinder, one of those educated artisans whom the revolutions of 1848 sent to us in great numbers.
The show's seventh season keeps this tradition alive as it chronologically breaks down the sprawling and complicated European revolutions of 1848. Rather than treat mid-19th century Europe as homogenous blocks of "workers," "capitalists," and "conservatives" clashing over injustice, Duncan dives into the rich social and political fabric of the time, explaining the varied (and often conflicting) interests of rural peasants, urban laborers, middle-class professionals, and rising industrialists.
This well-researched and eminently readable study has much to offer to students of Habsburg and Polish history but also to readers more generally interested in state building, the Enlightenment, identity formation, and the revolutions of 1848. For historians of the Habsburg Monarchy, the book helps to shift attention away from the more commonly traversed ground of post-1867 Vienna and Bohemia and incorporates Polish- and Ukrainian-language scholarship into the English-language historiography.
The Congress system was little more than a holding action against the forces of political change, which continued throughout the century in the revolutions of 1848, 1871, 1905, and the Bolshevik revolution of 1917.
"From Above and Below: The Mormon Embrace of Revolution, 18401940" tells the story of Mormon commentary on global revolutions from the European revolutions of 1848 to the collapse of Mormon faith in progress in the 1930s when revolutionary communist and fascist regimes exposed themselves as violent and repressive.
In the Romanian society he made himself well-known with a special force due to a group of politicians whose views enjoyed a strong popular adhesion, most of them standing out through an intense activity before the revolutions of 1848. The liberal ideas existed within the programs of certain secret political societies, conspiratorial groups and cultural societies, which pursued the political, economic and cultural emancipation of the country.
When the revolutions of 1848 in Europe were rolled back the following year, everything was nonetheless different, as we now know.
We exist in a quite different universe from the political environments that produced Diderot, writing about the Salon on the eve of the French Revolution; or Baudelaire on Courbet in the wake of the Revolutions of 1848; or even Greenberg, writing about Abstract Expressionism at a time when Trotskyism was still a serious, if increasingly untenable, political position.
The book includes year-by-year season highlights; illustrations; and notes on parodies of these "monster" orchestras, and on the revolutions of 1848 and subsequent exodus to America.
BY NOW WE'VE ALL HEARD a number of analyses of the events in Egypt and the outbreak of revolutionary fervor that is toppling regimes throughout the Arab world: It's a replay of the revolution that overthrew the shah of Iran and installed the Ayatollah Khomeini (say the neocons); it's all a sinister plot to install a Muslim "caliphate" and institute sharia--and socialism--throughout the world (Glenn Beck, off his meds again); and even that it's a replay of the revolutions of 1848, as Cato Institute analyst Leon Hadar would have it, a time of turmoil in which "the demise of Europe's ruling elites--the traditional protectors of the Jews--was at the core of the great tragedy of European Jews in the modern times."
He also asserts, however, that Liberal nationalism was not only a means to attack conservative government but also an ideology to subdue the working class, an argument that traces back to Priscilla Robertson's renowned Revolutions of 1848. Professor Rapport's general tenor is very similar to Jonathan Sperber's The European Revolutions, 1848-1851.
The revolutions of 1848 have long had a public relations problem: less acclaimed, less remembered and certainly much less esteemed than their counterparts of 1789, 1917, or, more recently, 1989.