Russia History Romanov War Crimean War (1853–56)

Crimean War (1853–56)

Russia expanded down the eastern and western shores of the Black Sea in the first half of the nineteenth century, hoping to eventually gain possession of Constantinople and the Turkish Straits. The decline of the Ottoman Empire seemed to favour these plans, but other European powers were also interested in controlling the Bosphorus.

Great Britain and France were unable to agree with Russia on spheres of influence in the Middle East. Wrongly believing that these two rivals would not join forces against him, Nicholas I moved his troops into Moldavia and Wallachia. But London and Paris jointly demanded a Russian withdrawal. When Nicholas ignored the ultimatum, Britain and France declared war in March 1854.

The Crimean War started off well for Russia. On 30 November 1853, Admiral Pavel Nakhimov destroyed a Turkish squadron at the Battle of Sinop. But Britain and France sent their navies to the Crimea in September 1854. The allied fleet landed an expeditionary force at Eupatoria and confined the Russian navy to its base at Sebastopole.

After defeating a Russian army at the Battle of Alma on 20 September, the Allies besieged Sebastopole on 17 October 1854. The city was captured on 9 September 1855, despite an heroic defence lasting almost a year. By this time, both sides were exhausted and there were no further military operations in the Crimea.

On 18 February 1855, Nicholas I died and was succeeded by his son, Alexander II, who signed the Treaty of Paris on 30 March 1856. Under the terms of the peace agreement, the Black Sea was turned into a demilitarised zone. This meant that Russia could not have a Black Sea Fleet, a humiliating setback which greatly diminished her influence in the area.

Random Articles

Illustrator
Boris Dekhteryov
Graphic artist, draughtsman, illustrator, theatrical designer, teacher, writer on book graphic art. Born in the family of Alexander Dekhteryov in Kaluga (1908). Studied at L. M. Yemelyanov’s studio in Krasnodar (1921–22), at
Art Nouveau
Alexander Hausch
Painter, graphic artist, teacher. Born to German merchant Viktor Karl Theodor Hausch (1845–1929) and Baroness Mathilde Amalie Luise von Hauff (1846–1907) in St Petersburg (1873). Studied at the Reformed Church School in St
Wives
Maria Nagaya
Maria Nagaya was a boyar’s daughter and the eighth wife of Ivan the Terrible. She married Ivan IV in September 1580 and gave birth to a son called Dmitry on 19 October 1582. Not long before he died in 1584, Ivan divorced Maria
École de Paris
Vladimir Baranoff-Rossiné
Painter, sculptor, colour-music theorist, inventor, teacher. Born Shulim Wolf Leib Baranov to Jewish merchant David Baranov and his wife Rosalia in the Pale of Settlement (1888). Studied under Kyriakos Kostandi and Gennady
Émigré
Alexandre Arnstam
Graphic artist, painter, theatrical designer, cinema designer. Born in Moscow in the family of a textile manufacturer called Martyn Arnshtam (1880). Studied painting at Konstantin Juon’s studio, Académie de la Palette and