1874 Mitchell World Atlas – France, Spain, Portugal


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From the Mitchell 1874 Atlas of the World- France Spain Portugal. A beautifully hand colored map from 140 years ago.

The Franco-Prussian War began in 1870 and ended a year later. The conflict pitted the French Empire and Kingdom of Prussia against one another. The North German Confederation aided Prussia. Tension had been rising due to past conflicts, failures, and resentment. Prussia and the German States used industrial technology to their advantage. The war ended with the victory of Prussia and its allies. A primary consequence of the war was the unification of Germany into an empire in its own right. Otto von Bismarck ruled the nation under an authoritarian constitution that elected a national parliament, but gave the Kaiser extensive powers. The now unified industrializing nation shifted the balance of power in Europe. Post-war tension between the two sides is considered a precursor to World War I.

A constitutional crisis occurred in 1877 in the French Third Republic. It involved the distribution of power between the president and legislature. When the Royalist President MacMahon dismissed the Republican Prime Minister Simon, parliament refused to support the new government. MacMahon resolved to dissolve the parliament. Elections were conducted, and an overwhelming victory was brought for the Republicans. Ultimately the interpretation of the 1875 Constitution as a parliamentary system triumphed over a presidential system. This put an end to hopes of a monarchist revival by the Royalist movement and was crucial to the longevity of the Third Republic.

Since its discovery in the late fifteenth century, Cuba was considered the "pearl" of the Spanish Empire. The Ten Years' War in Cuba was sparked by an uprising against Spanish rule by Cuban rebels in 1868. The uprising consisted of a Cuban sugar mill owner, Carlos Manuel de C├ęspedes, and his followers proclaiming Cuba's independence from Spain. Thus began the first of three liberation wars. The other two took place after 1878, when the Ten Years' War ended. These were the Litter War, lasting two years, and the Cuban War of Independence, a three years war. The final three months of the War of Independence escalated into the Spanish-American War.

In Portugal, the Liberal Wars spanned from 1828 to 1834 as a civil war. The fight was between progressive constitutionalists and authoritarian absolutists in Portugal over royal succession. The liberals fought under Pedro IV, while the absolutists fought under Dom Miguel, Pedro's brother. The liberals supported a constitutional monarchy and worked to secure the throne for Pedro's daughter Dona Maria II. The absolutists believed it was Miguel's divine right to rule. Pedro attempted to reconcile the two sides through a new constitution, allowing both factions a role in the government. The absolutist party of landowners and the Church was not satisfied and continued to fight for Miguel. The party continued to disregard Pedro as ruler until the Cortes of 1828 proclaimed Miguel as absolute ruler, thus nullifying the Constitutional Charter. A rebellion was unearthed. Miguel immediately suppressed the liberal rebellions. Five years of repression followed. The Battle of Asseiceira was the last and decisive engagement in the Civil War. A peace was declared under a concession by which Miguel renounced all claims to the throne and was exiled. Pedro restored the Constitutional Charter and was once again named ruler.

Archival reproduction print from high resolution scan. 12" x 15"


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