The Seven Years' War Paper Example

Paper Type:  Research paper
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1908 Words
Date:  2022-07-26
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The Beginning of the Seven Years' War

The Indian and French war was the North American conflict in an imperial war that was larger between France and Great Britain also referred to as the Seven Years War. The Indian and French war began in 1754, ending with the Paris treaty in 1763. The war provided Great Britain with enormous territorial gains in the North of America, but disputes over paying the war's expenses and frontier policy led to colonial discontent and ultimately to the revolution of the American (Morriss, 977).

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Nevertheless, the Indian and French war resulted from continuing frontier tensions in the North of America as both the British and the French imperial colonists and officials sought to extend their country's sphere of the frontier regions influence. However, in North America, the war pitted French colonists, France, and their native friends against Great Britain, the Iroquois Confederacy and Anglo-American colonists, that took control over parts of northern Pennsylvania and most of upstate New York (Daniel and Baugh n.p). In 1753, before the outbreak of hostilities, the thirteen colonies were controlled by Great Britain up to the Appalachian Mountains, beyond lay the New France- a large, sparsely populated colony that stretched through the valley of Mississippi and Great Lakes to Canada from Louisiana. The border between the British and French possessions was unclearly defined, and one territory that was disputed was the upper Ohio River valley. The French had built many forts in this region having the attempt for their claims to be strengthened on the territory (Szabo, 152).

The colonial forces of the British, which was led by Lieutenant Colonel George Washington, tried to expel the French in 1754, but the French were so many thus, defeating the British. When the Prime Minister, Thomas Pelham, had the failure of Washington, a quick retaliatory strike that was undeclared was called by him. However, in his actions, the cabinet adversaries outmaneuvered him by making the secretive plans public, alerting the government of the French and escalating a full-scale war that was a distant frontier skirmish. However, the war did not begin well for the British and its government sent General Edward Braddock as a commander in chief of the North American forces of the British to the colonies. Braddock instead, alienated potential allies that were Indians, making the colonial leaders fail to cooperate with him (Morriss, 977). On July 13th, 1755, Edward Braddock died after being wounded mortally in an ambush on an expedition that failed to capture Fort Duquesne, now called Pittsburg. Nonetheless, the North American war settled to a stalemate for a few years and while in Europe, an important naval victory was scored by the French, capturing the possession of the British of Minorca in the Mediterranean in 1756 (Daniel and Baugh n.p).

After 1757, however, the war began to change, favoring Great Britain and the forces of the British defeated the French forces in India. Moreover, in 1759, the armies of the British invaded and conquered Canada. Acquiring a tenuous position in Europe and facing defeat in North America, the government of the French attempted to engage the Great Britain in peace negotiations but William Pitt, the British minister, and secretary for the southern affairs, sought the French cession of Canada and the concessions that were commercial that the government of French found unacceptable (Szabo, 153). However, these negotiations failed and Charles III, the Spanish King, offered to help his cousin, Louis XV, the French King, and an alliance was signed by their representatives are known as the Family Compact in 1761, August 15th. The agreement terms stated that Great Britain would be in danger as Spain would declare war on them if they did not end the war before 1st May 1762. Originally intending to pressure Great Britain into a peace agreement, the Family Compact reinvigorated the will of the French ultimately to continue the war, causing the government of the British to declare war on Spain in 1762, January 4th (Riley, n.p). The war was declared after the infighting bitterly among the ministers of King George III.

Despite facing the formidable alliance, the naval strength of the British and the ineffectiveness of the Spanish led to the success of Great Britain. The French Caribbean islands were all seized by the British forces as well as the Philippines and Spanish Cuba. The fight in Europe ended after the Spanish invasion of the British ally Portugal failed (Daniel and Baugh n.p). By 1763, the diplomats of the Spanish and French began to seek peace resulting to the treaty of Paris. Nonetheless, the British secured territorial gains in the North of American that were significant including Spanish Florida, all the French territory that was east of the Mississippi River but the treaty returned Cuba to Spain. However, it was quite unfortunate for the British as their victory brought with them trouble with the American colonies of Great Britain (Morriss, 978).

Causes of the Seven Years' War

Encompassing conflict between North America, the Caribbean, Europe, and India, the Seven Years War resulted in from a collision between two different international problems. Firstly, there was the growing imperial and colonial friction between France and Britain, that became acute in the early 1750s. This was because the authorities of the French and colonists of the British in the North of America began staking out claims of rivals to the Ohio River Valley. Additionally, during 1755, open warfare erupted in the backcountry, followed by repeated seizures of the British because of the French shipping in the North Atlantic. Louis Joseph in Response of Louis XV was dispatched with reinforcements for the colonial forces of the French, to take a military command in Quebec, the New France, in April 1756. Secondly, the war stemmed from the refusal of Australia to accept the loss of Silesia to Frederick II of Prussia. In the Australian succession war, from the determination of the Russians to humble Prussia, the Aix-la-Chapelle peace had merely suspended the conflict of Austro-Prussian over Silesia (Riley, n.p).

While internal reforms were carried out by Australia to her administration, one of Maria Theresa's inner councilors, Count Wenzel Anton von Kaunitz, who became chancellor in 1753, remote at first, pursued the possibility of the alliance of the French against Prussia. Additionally, between 1755 and 1756, his hard work and patience began to pay dividends. However, with the anxiety of Great Britain about George II's security, the domains of the German were no longer able to rely on the support of the Austrian because they secured Russian guarantees in 1755 September for the electorate of George in exchange for the promised subsidies (Daniel and Baugh n.p). In this case, the agreement of the Anglo-Russian, in turn, prompted a fearful Frederick II of Prussia to hold and manage a reconciliation with the British in January 1756 in the defensive Convention of London's shape. But the diplomatic revolution was the unforeseen consequence (Szabo, 153).

Nonetheless, Russia repudiated her agreement with the British, tightening their alliance with Austria and combining their powers to prepare for the war against Prussia. Louis XV bereft of friends was forced to take up Kaunitz proposal of an end to two hundred and fifty years of the antagonism of Franco-Habsburg (Morriss, 979). Therefore, on 1st May 1757, the first treaty of Versailles which was defensive was signed between Austria and France. However, two weeks later, France invaded British rule of Minorca and war broke out between Britain and France. Frederick II being aware of the forces that gathered him felt that he had no choice but to launch a strike that was preemptive in August 1757, so that Saxony would be seized and take over its army. This caused the French to activate their Austrian alliance (Morriss, 977).

The Anglo-French Imperial Struggle of 1755-1760

While stagnation was produced in the Europe war, the conflict of the Anglo-French was more decisive because Pitt was determined to destroy so much of the French's overseas power. In India, the skillful handling of Robert Clive of indigenous auxiliary troops and the navy combined operations allowed him to recapture Calcutta in March 1757, from the Nawab of Bengal after the previous year's loss. Clive followed this through gaining the control of all the Bengal after his Plassey victory on July 26th. However, things were going unexpectedly for the British in North America (Riley, n.p). Such progress in the backcountry in 1756-1757, was made by Montcalm, forcing the commanders of the British to reconsider their plans and strategies instead, for a full assault in Quebec up the river of Saint Lawrence, where they requested massive sea and land reinforcements from London. Fortunate for the British, Pitt endorsed their request, and in 1758, issues that bedeviled relations between the colonies and regular forces were resolved to the colonists' satisfaction, making the colonial military resources to be unlocked immediately (Daniel and Baugh n.p).

However, in July 1758, Montcalm blocked the advancement of the British at Fort Ticonderoga at the base of Lake Champlain. In the same month, France was unable to curb an amphibious seizure of the British of their Louisburg fortress on the island of Cape Breton. Fort Duquesne was later reduced by the British after four months at the forks of the Ohio River Valley (Szabo, 151). The effect of these successes was so that the American Indian nations to neutralize, with the Indians coming to accommodation and collaboration with the colonial authorities of the British. In 1758, a series of diversionary amphibious attacks were launched by Pitt on the Atlantic Coast of the French, a threat that pinned down the forces of the French so that they could not be deployed either in the colonies or against Hanover. In 1759, worse was to come for Louis XV because the forces of Montcalm in Quebec were suffering from inadequate and no supplies and dwindling workforce, in spite of the great mobilization of the adult male colonies. In contrast, eight thousand fresh troops were sent out by the British under James Wolfe, who sailed up Saint Lawrence in June, with twenty-two ships to the Quebec City line (Morriss, 976).

They later found their selves cut off and with dwindling supplies. While Ticonderoga was captured by Amherst, Massachusetts and New York were secured. However, in September 1759, Montcalm was provoked by Wolfe into a battle outside the New France where both of them were killed with the British becoming victorious. In April 1760, Quebec surrendered, and the French army remnants managed to escape and being reinforced to seven thousand men, they marched on the New France to attempt its recapture. However, the victory of Levis over the forces of the British outside the city walls could not curb the siege abandonment in the face of the British relief and Pierre Francois de Rigaud, the governor of the French, in September, surrendered the rest of the New France (Szabo, 152). In spite of the campaign which was vigorous, North America's outcome had been determined in the previous year at the sea after Britain had destroyed a battle fleet off Lagos of the French on August 17th and had defeated the other off the Brittany coats at the Quiberon bay in 20th November. These actions assured the British of the Atlantic and the English Channel, dashing the hopes of invasion, allowing the French ports blockade and cutting off the overseas of the French form the homeland. In June 1761, Britain dominated the southern coast of Brittany after managing to capture Belle-Isle.

Domestic Politics and Ending of the War

By the end of 1760, there was a war between the British and all the B...

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