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Peace Treaties and International Law in European History. From the Late Middle Ages to World War One
The history of international law is a field of study still underrepresented both in scholarship and university curricula. The sources, even some peace treaties, still await modern critical editions. In these circumstances a collection of new studies dedicated to the subject is a most welcome contribution. The volume is well arranged and produced and can certainly be recommended to both students and scholars of international law.
Nineteen individual contributions of various natures are thematically arranged in four parts. The volume is conveniently prefaced with a list of peace treaties from antiquity to the present times. The “Tractatus de confederatione, pace, and conventionibus” by Martinus Garatus Laudensis, edited by Alain Wijffels, is added as an appendix.
Chapters 2-5 constitute the first part, entitled ‘Peace treaties and international law from Lodi to Versailles (1454-1920)’. The second part, ‘Thinking peace: voices from the past’, includes six chapters, dedicated, generally speaking, to the reception of Roman law and medieval legal tradition in early modern international law. The third and fourth parts, ‘Thinking peace: towards a better future’ and ‘Making peace: aspects of treaty practice’, consisting of four contributions each, are dedicated to the theory and practice of peace making, respectively.
In his introduction to the volume, Randall Lesaffer outlines both the scope and limitations of the book. The scope of the book is twofold: both the law which governs peace treaties and the law as it emerged from peace treaties are studied. ‘The book goes beyond the analysis of treaties as legal instruments to the analysis of peace treaties as sources of the law of nations’ (p. 2). Two limitations are acknowledged: a geographical one and the period covered. The book is limited to European peace treaty practice and deliberately excludes treaties with and between non-European powers as well as the problem of European expansion and colonialism. As far as the period covered is concerned, the Peace Treaties of Paris (1919/20) were chosen as the terminus ad quem, since they marked a fundamental turning point in the history of international law and the beginning of the era of international organizations on the other hand, the history of early modern law of nations, which traditionally starts with the Peace Treaties of Westphalia of 1648, ‘the very birth certificates of modern European states system’, is traced to before this epochal date. Roman law, both classical and medieval, receives special attention in a number of chapters.
We also learn from the introduction that the book resulted from a meeting at Tilburg University on 30-31 March 2001, and that the contributors plan to continue research to fill in the many lacunae that still exist in the field and aim to open debate rather then to end it (p. 2).
The first part of the book discusses the peace treaties and international law from Lodi to Versailles (1454-1920) in chronological and fairly continuous order. Randall Lesaffer surveys peace treaties from Lodi to Westphalia (pp. 9-44), Heinz Duchhardt peace treaties from Westphalia to the Revolutionary Era (pp. 45-58), and Heinhard Steiger peace treaties from Paris to Versailles (pp. 59-99). Special attention is paid to ‘the internal logic and mechanism of peacemakings and also to the categories which were used in order to situate the material results of the negotiations in a particular conception of the world’ (p. 45). An attempt is made to achieve a balanced treatment of those issues that are still very explosive in contemporary politics (e.g., pp. 68-69). A summary of the contents of these chapters is hardly possible here. I note, however, that this clear and lucid outline is perfect as an introduction to the history of international law in the period covered for students of both history and law.
The second part, ‘Thinking peace: voices from the past’, examines the classical and medieval roots of early modern international law. This part is inevitably less coherent then the previous one and consists of six studies, relatively independent of each other.
In his long chapter, ‘Vestigia pacis. The Roman peace treaty: structure or event?’ (pp. 103-146), Christian Baldus starts with “an emblematic problem — the legal nature of pax — ‘was war considered to be a rule and peace an exception, which therefore required a special foundation by treaty?'” (p. 106). In the first section of the chapter, ‘the existence and peculiarities of ancient international law’ is discussed in some detail (pp. 107-114). Baldus argues that, strictly speaking, ‘the existence of international law was politically impossible … at the time of Early and High Republic and then in late Antiquity’ (p. 112). The reasons given are quite obvious: ‘the law only just emancipated itself from the sacral formalism’, and ‘the theoretical instruments were to a large extent missing even in private law’. Moreover, because during the Classical period of private law Rome did not have any serious adversaries in the Mediterranean area, the terminology and theory of international law lagged behind the development of private law. The next section deals with the problem of ‘Classical’ Roman international law as a ‘categorical system’ (pp. 114-123). While traces of systematization of peace treaties are found, for instance, in Livy 34, 57, 7ff and Dig. 49, 15, 5, 2 etc., systematization in the proper sense of the word is certainly a modern invention: we form categories ourselves and try to discover what in the ancient practice corresponds to them. After a short section concerning ‘Classical’ Roman international law and sociological systems (pp. 123f), Baldus discusses a number of examples (pp. 125ff). Roman arbitration awards between third parties, debates about violations of treaties, and disputes between Rome and its allies are treated in considerable detail. The chapter ends with a methodological section entitled ‘Desiderata’.
‘The influence of medieval Roman law on peace treaties’ is discussed by Karl-Heinz Ziegler. After making certain observations on the medieval practice of conclusion treaties and the Late Medieval work on international treaties by Martinus Garatus Laudensis (on whom see below) Ziegler comes to a natural conclusion that the influence in question ‘was rather limited if we consider most of the material provisions … On the other hand, this influence should not be underestimated’ (p. 160).
The theme of reception is continued in ‘The importance of medieval canon law and the scholastic tradition for the emergence of the early modern international legal order’ by Dominique Bauer. The author proposes to deal with two ‘central elements that emerged throughout the medieval period’: natural law (‘Natural law and the objective, public order’, pp. 204-216) and voluntarism (‘The legal subject’, pp. 216-221). The antagonism between the legal subject and the objective, public legal order ‘historically takes shape within the tension between voluntarism and consensualism on the one hand and institutionalization on the other’ (p. 216). Bauer follows this historical development from Classical Roman and Justinian law, canon law and the glossators to John Peter Olivi, Jean Gerson Francisco de Vitoria, Francisco Suarez, and, finally, Grotius (whose ‘eclectic definition of the concept of ius as a subjective right in fact collects the different terminological elements of the old scholastic tradition’, p. 221).
To close the subject, Laurens Winkel considers ‘The Peace Treaties of Westphalia as an instance of the reception of Roman law’. Winkel first considers a gradual change of ius gentium as a philosophical concept, and then turns to two institutions of Roman law implicitly referred to in the Peace Treaties of Westphalia: the principles of uti possidetis and restitutio in integrum. Winkel shows, quite successfully, that the Peace Treaties of Westphalia are a noticeable but until now underestimated instance of the (indirect) reception of Roman law (p. 237). Alain Wijffels contributes both a study, ‘Martinus Garatus Laudensis on treaties’, and an edition of the ‘Treatise on alliance, peace, and conventions of princes’ by Martinus Garatus Laudensis, a professor of Roman law in Pavia, Siena, Bolonga and Ferrara (c. 1453). Actually, as Wijffels shows, the treatise is better understood as a part of a larger work and not a treatise in the modern sense of the word as a comprehensive treatment of a particular subject matter. Garatus’ treatise simply consists of a series of 63 brief questions, not arranged according to any obvious principle. ‘Some questions could have been treated in another treatise and, conversely, some of the questions treated in other treatises (by the same author) are more relevant to the law of treaties’ (p. 188). Sometimes the answer to a question could be just a reference to a given authority, without the solution having been spelled out. Wijffels deals in turn with three basic topics of the treatise — personae, modus and effectus, that is, the actors involved in the agreement, the principles governing negotiations, and the scope of the agreement (pp. 189-196). Still, the work by Garatus is interesting as an example of the late medieval law of treaties (sometimes taken as one of the first treatments of the topic). A provisional edition, published as an appendix to the volume, follows the Venice 1584 edition. The critical apparatus is based on a collation of two other old editions and three manuscripts. Sources briefly quoted and referred to by Garatus are given in full in the notes supplied by Wijffels, which is very convenient.
In ‘The kiss of peace’, Hanna Vollrath discusses ancient and medieval practices and procedures involving the osculum pacis. She shows how these pre-Christian social practices were charged with Christian symbolism. Kisses were an essential part of establishing feudal ties (p. 171). They were a part of the elaborate court ceremonial both in Byzantium and in the West. After detailed presentation of numerous instances of medieval practices of kissing in various contexts, private and public, Vollrath addresses the question of the importance of kissing in the peacemaking process (taking as examples Henry II and Thomas Becket, pp. 177ff), and finally argues against the suggestions (defended in recent scholarship) that the ritual of kissing had ever possessed law-enforcing power. ‘Legal consequences depend not on rituals, but on law-enforcing agencies … not necessarily institutions like state-organized law courts the members of community can act as a law agency as well’ (p. 181).
The third part, ‘Thinking peace: towards a better future’, opens with a study by Marc Bélissa entitled ‘Peace treaties, bonne foi and European civility in the Enlightenment’, in which he shows that in the eighteenth century diplomacy changed its character. Political thinkers such as Gabriel Bonnot de Mably (1709-85) insisted upon publicity and transparency of peace negotiations: diplomats should turn bonne foi into the cornerstone of their peaceful intentions (p. 242). Philosophers criticized ‘Machiavellian’ diplomacy and insisted on ‘true principles of morality’ as a basis for the law of nations, which tended to become a kind of European constitution, on which one had to rely to civilize the political system of Europe (p. 242). According to this principle, any unfair and pernicious treaty should be considered void (p. 247). In his informative study, ‘Peace, security and international organizations: the German international lawyers and the Hague Conferences’, Ingo Hueck asks: ‘Why did the strongest maritime and colonial power, Britain, develop a stronger notion of securing peace and building international relationship in the age of imperialism, while the young German Empire was devoting itself to glorifying war?’ (p. 255). Certainly no one can hope to answer questions of this sort in a single article, but Hueck does a very good job outlining the history of nineteenth century legal scholarship in Europe and the UK, on the one hand, and in Germany, on the other. It becomes clear that during the nineteenth century public international law actually emerged as a branch of the legal discipline. Hueck outlines the development of the international peace movement and the theoretical controversy at the Hague Conferences of 1899 and 1907, and concludes with the following statement: ‘Despite socio-cultural conditions being similar to those in the UK, in particular with presence of the German peace movement, prior to the First World War and the era of the League of Nations these circumstances had no effect either in the political or in the academic arena in Germany’. In ‘Consent and caution: Lassa Oppenheim (1858-1919) and his reaction to World War ι’, Mathias Schmoeckel discusses the theory of international law formulated by this famous thinker, primarily his views on state sovereignty, the League of Nations, and the question of individual responsibility in international law.
The study by Andreas Osiander, ‘Talking peace: social science, peace negotiations and the structure of politics’, places ‘the general subject matter of this volume, peace negotiations and treaties, within a theoretical framework’ (p. 289). What kind of theoretical framework is meant becomes apparent from the second section of the chapter, while the first discusses a (‘dubious’) dichotomy of historiography and social science. According to Osiander, the approach advocated, called constructivist, ‘is capable of integrating historiography and social studies to their mutual benefit’ (p. 289). The last two sections discuss the problem of ‘social and political change in Europe over the past ten or fifteen centuries’ from a constructivist point of view (p. 290). The dichotomy in question is not simply dubious, it is false, and five pages are hardly needed for dismissing it. Shortcomings of methodological constructs of this sort can be illustrated by the following. On the one hand Osiander criticizes positivism, saying quite rightly that ‘while the natural world may be studied with a positivistic approach, the social world cannot’ (p. 302). On the other hand, on p. 307 we find the following: ‘The social reality of any period is the result of constant interaction of forces of inertia and forces of change’. In the context of this study such a direct application of Galileo mechanics to the social world looks curious. Besides, the statement is (fortunately!) simply wrong. So theoretical assumptions made in the study are hardly convincing, but examples discussed in its second part are interesting and ingenious.
Let us now turn to the last part, ‘Making peace: aspects of treaty practice’. In ‘The ius foederis re-examined: the Peace of Westphalia and the constitution of the Holy Roman Empire’, after a survey of the historical context of the Thirty Years War and the peace conferences which marked its end, Ronald G. Asch discusses the most critical issue of the peace negotiations, the ius foederis. He shows that the problem was discussed in the traditional term of the rights of resistance rather than in the context of international diplomacy, and concludes that ‘lawyers and political theorists in the Holy Roman Empire continued to use ideas … in the later seventeenth century which had largely become obsolete in Western Europe’ (p. 337).
The second contribution by Karl-Heinz Ziegler to this volume, ‘The peace treaties of the Ottoman Empire with European Christian powers’, concerns ‘the only non-Christian European power, which from the Middle Ages to the early twentieth century, has ever been a permanent factor of the political system of Europe’ (p. 338). Ziegler scrupulously surveys the language and content of numerous truces and peace treaties which sultans concluded with Christian states from the Late Middle Ages to the peace treaty of Serves (1920) and the peace treaty of Lausanne (1923), placing them in European historical and political context.
In ‘Peace and prosperity: commercial aspects of peacemaking’, Stephen Neff surveys the relationship between the political and economic aspects of peace-making in its historic development from the Middle Ages (briefly) to the nineteenth and twentieth centuries (in considerable detail).
In the last chapter of the book Christian Tomuschat compares the 1871 Peace Treaty between France and Germany and the 1919 Peace Treaty of Versailles, paying special attention to the different political and legal contexts of these treaties. In 1871, war was still accepted as a natural part of dealing among states. No issues of international morality were raised. The situation changed in the beginning of the twentieth century. Not only was the responsibility of Germany and its allies for all the loss and damages caused by the First World War assumed, but also its leaders were personally charged with offences of a criminal nature. Still, relegating Germany to a secondary position within Europe, the authors of the Versailles treaty ‘wished retroactively to win the battles of the past instead of building the future’ (p. 392), thus paving the way for all the terrible consequences for European history of the twentieth century.
In the conclusion to this volume, Randall Lesaffer once again emphasizes the importance of reassessing the significance of the Peace Treaties of Westphalia of 1648 and thus of studying the periods preceding and following the “Westphalian era” (1648-1815).
The volume is very well written and produced. I noticed only a few misprints (on p. 402, for instance). Perhaps too specialized and expensive to be used as a textbook, it will certainly be of interest not only to specialists in the field, but also to a broader readership interested in the history of international law.
Treaty of Lodi
The Treaty of Lodi, or Peace of Lodi, was a peace agreement between Milan, Naples and Florence that was signed on 9 April 1454 at Lodi in Lombardy, on the banks of the Adda. It put an end to the Wars in Lombardy between expansive Milan, under Filippo Maria Visconti, and Venice, in the terraferma. They had produced a single decisive Venetian victory, at the Battle of Maclodio in 1427 in which the Venetian ally was Florence but had resulted in no lasting peace. After a further generation of intermittent seasonal campaigning, the Treaty of Lodi established permanent boundaries between Milanese and Venetian territories in Northern Italy, along the river Adda.  Francesco Sforza was confirmed as the rightful duke of Milan. A principle of a balance of power in Northern Italy was established, one that excluded ambitions of other powers: the Republic of Genoa, and the princely families of Savoy, Gonzaga and Este.
A related agreement was signed at Venice on 30 August, among Milan, Venice and Florence, which had switched sides, in which the parties bound themselves to principles of non-aggression. The Kingdom of Naples and the other states, including the Papal States, soon joined the Italic League.  Thus, the Peace of Lodi brought Milan and Naples into a definitive peace alliance with Florence. Francesco Sforza would base his lifelong external policy on this principle of balance of power. The status quo established at Lodi lasted until 1494, when French troops intruded into Italian affairs under Charles VIII, initiating the Italian Wars.
The Treaty was abrogated in 1483 when Venice and the Pope fought a war against Milan.
It lasted less than 50 years, but some scholars have argued that the treaty provided a proto-Westphalian model of a system between city-states (as opposed to between nation-states) after a century of incessant warfare in Northern Italy.   The treaty functioned to institutionalise a regional balance of power in which outright warfare gave way to diplomacy.
Sikandar Lodi Tomb History
If you are an avid history lover, this tomb is a must-visit place in Delhi. It witnesses the regal Mughal architecture that also has a good glimpse of Indian craftsmanship. The famous ruler Sikander Lodi had a reign from 1489-1517 CE. He was the next ruler from the Lodi dynasty after his father, Bahlul Lodi, in the year 1489 CE.
After Sikander Lodi died in 1517 CE, his second son Ibrahim Lodi built this spectacular tomb while remembering his great father. It almost took a year for completing the design of this octagonal tomb, and hundreds of skilled craftsmen worked day and night to complete it.
Most of the designs in the tomb have inspiration from Muhammad Shah.
You can witness his presence in other attractions near the place, such as the Lodi garden and spots like the Shish Gumbad and Bara Gumbad. Earlier, it was famous as the Old Lady Wellington park in 1936, where Britishers re-designed the nearby villages to the Lodi tomb and manicured a perfect garden. After the end of their rule, the place got back its real name as the tomb of Sikandar Lodi Delhi.
Napoleon's Campaign in Italy, 1796-97
Napoleon Bonaparte's fame as a military commander can be dated back to his campaign in Italy in 1796-97, where as the young and relatively unknown commander of a ragged and poorly supported army he managed to defeat a series of much larger Austrian and allied armies, conquer most of northern Italy, and force the Austrians to the negotiating table. Napoleon was appointed to command the French Army of Italy in March 1796. His orders were to invade northern Italy and occupy Lombardy, a move that the French Directory believed would force the Austrians to move troops south from the Rhine front. Napoleon's task was essentially diversionary, for the main offensive for 1796 was expected to take place on the Rhine. Instead the campaign on the Rhine would soon bog down, while Napoleon's whirlwind of activity in northern Italy effectively ended the War of the First Coalition.
The army Napoleon inherited was in a terrible condition. By 1796 the French armies on the Rhine were seen as the most important, and the Army of Italy was badly paid, badly provisioned and often badly under strength. By the time Napoleon had somewhere between 37,000 and 47,000 men at his disposal, spread out from the pass of Tenda at their left almost to Genoa at their right. The army was split into three divisions, commanded by Pierre Augereau, Andre Masséna and Jean Sérurier, all more experienced than their young commander.
In theory the French were outnumbered, but the 60,000 Allied troops facing them across the Apennines were split into two armies &ndash 25,000 Piedmontese troops south of Turin and 35,000 Austrian troops further east. The two Allied armies did not cooperate well, and would soon be forced apart. Napoleon would then face a series of Austrian armies sent across the Alps in an attempt to lift the siege of Mantua, and may have taken as many as 150,000 prisoners during the course of the campaign.
Across the Apennines &ndash April 1796
At the start of his Italian campaign Napoleon's army was stretched out along the coast from Nice towards Genoa, with the Apennine Mountains between him and the Austrian and Piedmontese armies. The main Austrian army, under the command of General Beaulieu, was based around Alessandria, north of Genoa, while the Piedmontese army (Colli) was further west, defending the main passes across the Maritime Alps and the approaches to Turin.
Napoleon planned to split these two armies, and defeat then in turn. He sent a messenger to the senate of neutral Genoa, asking for permission to advance through their territory. As Napoleon expected permission was refused, and the Austrians were informed of the request. Napoleon also sent a small decoy force along the coast to Voltri.
The key to Napoleon's early successes can be found in the geography of the Ligurian Apennines. Two main passes cross the mountains &ndash the Ormea pass in the west, which ran from Ormea up to Ceva in the Tanaro valley, and the Bochetta Pass, which left the coast at Genoa. Napoleon hoped to convince the Austrians he was heading for the Bochetta Pass. In fact he intended to cross the Apennines between the two main passes, taking advantage of a gap that ran from Savona at the coast west to Carcare, at the southern end of the Bormida valley. From there the French could move north along the valley to threaten the Austrians, or west to Millesimo and Ceva (along the route used by the modern A6 motorway) to threaten the Piedmontese.
Beaulieu acted exactly as Napoleon had hoped. While Beaulieu led one Austrian army down the Bochetta Pass to attack Voltri, a second column, under General Argenteau, was sent along the Bormida valley, in the hope that Napoleon's right wing could be trapped between the two. Instead Argenteau ran into a strong defensive position in the mountains north of Savona, and on 12 April suffered a heavy defeat in the battle of Montenotte, Napoleon's first victory as a commander.
This left the Allies divided, with the Piedmontese to the west at Millesimo and the Austrians to the north at Dego. Napoleon sent troops to attack both of these positions. On 13-14 April Augereau forced the Piedmontese out of Millesimo. This overlapped with the battle of Dego (14-15 April). On the first day Masséna captured Dego, but he was then forced out by an Austrian counterattack. On the second day Napoleon launched a series of attacks, and eventually the Austrians were forced to retreat. In the aftermath of this defeat General Beaulieu decided to pull back towards his base at Alessandria to defend his communications with Austria.
This left Napoleon free to turn west and eliminate Piedmont from the war. On 16-17 April the Piedmontese managed to hold the French off at Ceva, but then pulled back to a stronger position at Mondovi, where on 21 April Napoleon won a conclusive victory. On 23 April General Colli, in command of the Piedmontese army, sued for peace and on 28 April Piedmont withdrew from the war. (Armistice of Cherasco).
Napoleon was now free to turn east and defeat Beaulieu. First he had to cross the Po. The main Austrian defences were around Pavia, and Beaulieu assumed that Napoleon would attempt to cross the river somewhere in this area. Napoleon encouraged this belief by including a provision in the armistice of Cherasco that gave him the right to cross the Po at Valenza, thirty miles to the west of Pavia.
While Beaulieu watched the river crossings around Valenza, Napoleon moved his army east along the southern bank of the Po and crossed over at Piacenza (7 May), thirty miles to the east of Pavia. When Beaulieu realised what was happening he rushed east, but in three days of fighting around Fombio (7-9 May) the Austrians were unable to prevent the French from blocking their best line of retreat to Cremona. Beaulieu's rapid movement and the relatively slow crossing of the Po did give the Austrians time to turn to the north west and escape across the River Adda at Lodi, leaving a rearguard behind to defend the long thin bridge across the river.
On 10 May Napoleon threw his infantry across that bridge (battle of Lodi), in order to prevent the Austrians using the line of the Adda to block his advance east towards Mantua. After a struggle that lasted an hour the French were victorious. Beaulieu retreated east to Cremona, watched by the French. Napoleon then turned back to the west. On 14 May the first French troops reached Milan, and on the following day Napoleon entered in triumph.
This triumph was short lived. With Piedmont out of the war General Kellermann's Army of the Alps was free to enter Italy, and the Directory decided to give him command of the war against Austria. Napoleon was to turn south to deal with the Papal States. Napoleon sent two letters back to Paris, in which he argued strongly against a divided command. Although neither letter actually contained a threat to resign, it was clear that that was what Napoleon had in mind, and the Directory relented.
After the defeat at Lodi, the Austrians retreated east to the Mincio, taking up a defensive position behind that river, running from Mantua to Lake Garda. On 30 May Napoleon broke through this line (battle of Borgetto). Beaulieu was forced to retreat up the Adige valley, leaving Napoleon free to begin his siege of Mantua. The first blockade of the city began on 4 June.
June also saw Napoleon's first campaign in the Papal States. The invasion was officially launched in revenge for the murder of Ugo Bassville, a French diplomat, in February 1793, but was motivated just as much by revolutionary hatred for the Papacy and the lure of plunder. This first campaign was over very quickly. On 19 June Napoleon reached Bologna, where he expelled the Papal authorities. Pope Pius VI then sued for peace. In the Peace of Bologna (23 June 1796) the Pope agreed to pay a large indemnity and to allow the French to occupy Bologna and Ferrara. This treaty was never ratified in Paris, and Napoleon would return to the Papal States in the following year. After dealing with the Pope the French turned west into Tuscany, passing through Florence and occupying the port of Livorno (Leghorn), before returning back to the Po plain.
First Relief Attempt, July - August 1796
By late July a fresh Austrian army, under the command of Field Marshal Dagobert Graf Würmser, was ready to attempt to lift the siege of Mantua. Würmser decided to advance in three columns. He took command of the central column, which advanced down the Adige valley. To the east General Szoboszio advanced towards Verona, while to the west General Quosdanovich advanced down the Chiese valley towards Brescia. At first all went well. Quosdanovich captured Brescia, threatening Napoleon's lines of communication with Milan. Würmser found the road to Mantua open, and entered the city on 2 August. It was this apparent success that doomed Würmser's campaign to failure.
While Würmser was marching on Mantua, Napoleon concentrated his army south of Lake Garda. On 31 July his advancing troops forced Quosdanovich out of Lonato (first battle of Lonato), and over the next two days Quosdanovich lost Brescia and was forced to move north east towards the lake. Realising that he needed to join up with Würmser, on 3 July Quosdanovich attacked the French position at Lonato (second battle of Lonato). The Austrians failed to break through, leaving Napoleon free to turn on Würmser's column.
Würmser realised his mistake and turned north from Mantua in an attempt to find Quosdanovich. On 4 July he found himself facing a large part of Napoleon's army at Castiglione, and took up a strong defensive position just to the east of the town. If Würmser had been able to hold this position, then his campaign would still have ended in success, for at this point the siege had been lifted, but Napoleon was able to bring superior numbers to the battlefield. At the start of the battle of Castiglione (5 August 1796) the French were outnumbered, and their attacks on the Austrian centre were essentially feints, designed to keep Würmser pinned in place while reinforcements arrived.
Eventually fresh troops arrived from Mantua (Sérurier's division under the temporary command of General Pascal-Antione Fiorella) and from Brescia (Despinois's division), and the Austrians were forced to retreat back to the Mincio. The battle of Castiglione was an early example of Napoleon's 'strategic battle', where widely separated columns converged at a key point on the battlefield to give the French numerical superiority where it counted, even against much larger armies. Although the battle did not go entirely as Napoleon had planned, Würmser was soon forced to retreat back to the Tirol, and the French were able to re-establish the siege.
Second Relief Attempt - September 1796
At the start of September Napoleon and Würmser both went onto the offensive. Napoleon had been ordered to cross the Alps and join up with the Army of the Rhine, then campaigning on the Danube. Napoleon's route would take him up the Adige valley towards Trento, and then across the Brenner Pass to Innsbruck.
At the same time Würmser had been ordered to make a second attempt to lift the siege of Mantua. This time he decided to advance down the Brenta valley and emerge onto the northern Italian plain to the north east of Vicenza (the upper Brenta valley comes within a few miles of the Adige just to the east of Trento, and the two valleys are connected by a short low level pass).
Once on the Italian plains Würmser would join with another Austrian army under General Mészáros, and the combined army would advance towards Mantua from the east. Field Marshal Davidovich would defend the area around Trento. Both expeditions began at about the same time, so while Würmser was moving east along the Brenta, Napoleon was moving north up the Adige valley. On 3 September the French forced their way past Davidovich's defences around Rovereto, and on 4 September broke through a second line at Calliano. Davidovich was forced to abandon Trento.
Only now did Napoleon learn of Würmser's movements. Napoleon's response demonstrated another of the keys to his military success &ndash rapidity of movement. While a small force under General Vaubois was sent north to follow Davidovich, Napoleon's main army turned east to catch Würmser. Some sources suggest that Napoleon learnt of Würmser's movements before the battle of Rovereto, but a look at the map would suggest that this is incorrect. From any position south of Rovereto Napoleon had much better routes east to intercept Würmser, including retracing his steps down the Adige valley. Only the slow pace of Würmser's movement allowed Napoleon to catch and defeat him at Bassano.
Würmser was caught completely off guard, and dangerously out of position. His army was spread out, with one division still in the mountains at Primolano, a second at Bassano, at the edge of the plains, and a third at Vicenza. Napoleon's advance guard defeated Quosdanovich's division at Primolano (7 September 1796). On the following day, after another rapid march, Napoleon defeated Würmser at Bassano (8 September 1796) and split his army in two. Quosdanovich was forced to retreat east towards Treviso, while Würmser escaped towards Vicenza. Over the next few days Napoleon attempted to complete the destruction of Würmser's army, but eventually he and around 12,000 men arrived outside Mantua. A two day long battle followed (San Giorgio), but on 15 September Würmser was forced to seek refuge inside the city.
Third Relief Attempt &ndash November 1796
The trapped Würmser was replaced as Austrian commander-in-chief in northern Italy by Field Marshal Joseph Alvinczy. He was given command of two armies &ndash 27,000-30,000 men under General Quosdanovich at Friuli, at the north eastern corner of the north Italian plain and 17,000-20,000 men under Davidovich in the Tyrol. Alvinczy accompanied Quosdanovich's army.
Sickness and the accumulated losses of a long campaign meant that Napoleon now had around 28,000 men available for his field army. General Vaubois had 10,000 men at Lavis, just to the north of Trento in the upper Adige valley, facing Davidovich. Masséna had 9,500-10,000 men at Bassano, on the Brenta River, facing Quosdanovich. Augereau had 8,000 men at Verona, from where he could move to support either wing. Finally 8,000 men under General Kilmaine were blockading Mantua.
Alvinczy is normally criticised for splitting his forces and thus allowing Napoleon to defeat him in detail, but the Austrian plan came very close to success. Alvinczy realised that both of his field armies outnumbered their French opponents. With three divisions at his disposal Napoleon could only bring two of them to bear against a single Austrian army, and would still be outnumbered. It was unlikely that Napoleon would risk a second advance up the Adige valley to fall on Davidovich, so he would probably have to move east to attack Quosdanovich's larger army.
Alvinczy began his campaign on 1 November, when he crossed the Paive River. On 4 November Masséna pulled back from Bassano to Vicenza, and then to Montebello, where he met up with Augereau, giving him around 18,000 men to face at least 27,000 Austrians. Despite this Napoleon ordered Masséna to attack the Austrians on the Brenta River. On 6 November Masséna and Augereau launched attacks on the Austrians at Citadella and Bassano, but were repulsed by Generals Liptay and Provera. Masséna and Augereau then pulled back to San Martino, three miles east of Verona. Alvinczy reached Vicenza on 8 November and Montebello on 9 November.
Davidovich's advance down the Adige valley also met with success. On 2 November he repulsed a French attack at Lapis. After fighting on 6-7 November Vaubois was forced back from Caliano, and retreated to Rivoli. The two Austrian armies were now dangerously close to joining up. By 11 November Alvinczy had reached Caldiera, on the road between Vicenza and Verona, while his rearguard was at Villanova. Davidovich was only fifteen miles away, and if he had continued to press down the Adige valley would almost certainly have been able to join up with his commander. The Austrian plan failed because it took Davidovich ten days to advance from Rivoli onto the plains west of Verona, a delay that gave Napoleon a chance to concentrate on Alvinczy.
Even with this advantage Napoleon came close to failure. On 12 November Masséna and Augereau attacked the Austrians at Caldiera, and suffered a heavy defeat. Even Napoleon was discouraged by this, sending a very downbeat letter to the Directory in Paris, but he decided to risk one more attack. The Austrian position did have one weak spot. Alvinczy was advancing west towards the fortified and defended city of Verona, with the mountains to his right and the un-fordable Adige to his left. His only line of retreat was across a narrow band of dry ground at Villanova, at the northern tip of a triangle of swampy ground between the junction of the Adige and Alpone rivers.
Napoleon decided to attack across the Adige at Ronco, just above the junction with the Alpone. The battle that followed took its name from the village of Arcole, on the eastern bank of the Alpone, where some of the key fighting took place (battle of Arcola, 15-17 November 1796). Napoleon's first attack on 15 November failed, but it did alert Alvinczy to his danger, and gave him time to withdraw most of his troops from the trap. On the third day of the battle the French were finally successful, and the Austrians were forced to retreat east.
This victory came in the nick of time. On 17 November Davidovich finally forced the French back to Peschiera. If this advance had come any earlier Napoleon might have been trapped between two armies, but it did at least save Alvinczy from any serious pursuit. Napoleon was forced to turn west to help Vaubois. For a moment there was a chance that Davidovich would be trapped, but after fighting around Castelnuovo (21 November) he managed to escape north. Alvinczy took advantage of this to move west back to Caldiera, before retreating east against after the defeat of Davidovich.
Fourth Relief Attempt - January 1797
Two months passed before Alvinczy launched the fourth and final relief effort. This time he led the main Austrian army, 28,000 strong, down the Adige valley, while General Provera with 18,000 men advanced towards Verona and Legnago from the east. This time the two Austrian armies were meant to operate independently, and both should have been strong enough to defeat the French troops on their respective fronts. Napoleon had less than 30,000 men available for his field armies, split into three divisions. Augereau was based around Vicenza, where he would face Provera. Joubert with 10,000 men was at La Corona, just to the north of Rivoli, where he would face Alvinczy. Finally Masséna was in a central position at Verona.
The Austrian advance was underway by 10 January. Two days later one of Provera's columns was repulsed from Verona, but on 14 January his main column crossed the Adige, broke through Augereau's centre and made for Mantua. This success came to nothing, for on 13 January Napoleon realised that Alvinczy's was the main effort, and ordered all of his available troops to concentrate at Rivoli. Napoleon himself arrived just after midnight, Masséna arrived at about dawn and Rey arrived at around noon. Napoleon was thus able to feed reinforcements into the fighting whenever a crisis loomed.
He was also helped by the Austrian plan of attack, designed on the previous day to ensure the complete destruction of Joubert's isolated division. Alvinczy's six divisions attacked in three main columns &ndash two divisions attacked along the Adige, three attacked the centre of the French line and the final division was sent on a wide outflanking movement. Napoleon was able to defeat each part of the Austrian army in turn, and Alvinczy was eventually forced to abandon the attack. By the end of the battle of Rivoli the Austrians had lost around 10,000 men, and another 5,000 were captured by Joubert over the next couple of days.
While Joubert moved north after Alvinczy Napoleon and Masséna rushed south to prevent Provera from reaching Mantua. On 16 January Provera was caught at between Masséna and the troops besieging Mantua, and was forced to surrender (battle of La Favorita). The defeat of the forth relief effort effectively doomed Mantua. Two weeks later, on 2 February, Würmser surrendered to Sérurier.
As Mantua was capitulating Napoleon was heading south on a second invasion of the Papal States. This time he advanced down the east coast as far as Ancona before the Pope sued for peace. On 19 February Napoleon and the Papal representatives agreed to the Treaty of Tolentino. The Pope ceded Bologna, Ferrara and Ancona to the French and recognised the seizure of Avignon and the surrounding area in 1791.
Napoleon's next task was the invasion of Austria. He now faced the same problem that had crippled every Austrian attempt to save Mantua &ndash there were two routes across the Alps and Napoleon couldn't afford to leave either of them unguarded while he used the other. The first route led up the Adige valley into the Tyrol, across the Brenner Pass to Innsbruck then east along the northern side of the Alps to Vienna. The second crossed the Julian and Carnatic Alps, at the north eastern corner of Italy, and ran from Udine to Villach, then east to Klagenfurt before turning north east to run around the eastern end of the Alps up to Vienna. It was also possible to advance to the southern end of the Brenner Pass and then turn east to pass through the mountains to Klagenfurt.
The court at Vienna realised that it faced a serious crisis and appointed the Archduke Charles to command the army facing Napoleon. Charles had recently inflicted a serious defeat on the French armies operating across the Rhine, and was perhaps the most able of all Austrian generals of the period. He immediately realised that the best way to oppose Napoleon was to concentrate his army in the Tyrol. If Napoleon attempted to use the eastern route across the Alps then Charles could move south and cut him off. The French would have to turn north to fight the Austrians in the Tyrol. Charles's original position around Innsbruck also made it much easier for Austrian reinforcements to reach him.
Unfortunately for Charles the Austrian government didn't agree with his plan, and he was ordered to make his stand on the Piave River to cover the port of Trieste. He arrived on the Piave on 11 February 1797 and prepared to fight a defensive campaign. At this date he had 22,000 soldiers on the Piave, and 10,000 soldiers and as many militia in the Tyrol, and he had been promised close to 50,000 reinforcements, but very few would reach him in time to play any part in the battles to come.
Napoleon now had the largest army available to him at any point in the campaign. He had requested 30,000 reinforcements, and had received 20,000 of them, under Delmas and Bernadotte, and the fall of Mantua freed up thousands more. When the campaign began he was able to leave 18,000 men in the Tyrol (Joubert, Delmas and Baraguay d'Hilliers) and lead 34,000 men in four divisions himself (Sérurier, Masséna, Guyeux and Bernadotte). Napoleon's plan was for Joubert to push the Austrians in the Tyrol back across the Brenner Pass to Innsbruck, while he advanced across the Carnatic and Julian Alps. If Joubert was successful he could turn east and advance along the Drave Valley to join Napoleon at Villach or Klagenfurt.
At the start of March the Austrians had 3,000 men under General Lusignan just inside the mountains at Feltre on the Piave, guarding their lines of communication to the Tyrol and 22,000 men under the Archduke Charles along the Piave between the mountains and the sea. Napoleon sent Masséna to deal with Lusignan, while he led his main force to the Piave.
Masséna began his advance on 10 March. Lusignan retreated up the river from Belluno, but on 13 March was forced to stand and fight between Polpet, where the valley of the Piave turns north and enters the high mountains, and Longarone, five miles to the north. Masséna was then free to turn south, crossing the Tagliamento River near Spilimbergo (five miles south of the start of the mountains) on 16 March. Masséna then moved north along the Tagliamento to Gemona. He then advanced north east along the mountain passes to Pontebba, from where he threatened Charles's right and the crucial Tarvis pass.
On 13 March Napoleon's main force crossed the Piave and advanced towards the Tagliamento at Valvasone. On 16 March Bernadotte and Guyeux's divisions forced their way across the river (battle of the Tagliamento) in one of the few recognised set-piece battles of the campaign. The Austrians lost 500 men and were forced to retreat east.
After the defeat on the Tagliamento Charles split his army. Bajalich, with his division, 25 guns and a large supply convoy, was sent east to Cividale, at the edge of the mountains. From there he was to cross the mountains to Caporetto in the upper Isonzo valley and then follow an alternative route to Tarvis. Charles hoped that this division would arrive in time to keep the pass open, for if the French captured Tarvis then Charles's reinforcements would have had to follow a very long route around the eastern side of the mountains to reach him on the Isonzo. The rest of the army pulled back to Gradisca on the lower Isonzo. Charles hoped to defend that river, which was the last natural barrier before Trieste.
The French soon forced their way across the Isonzo, taking 3,000 prisoners in Gradisca. Napoleon attempted to push the Austrians into the mountainous upper reaches of the Isonzo valley, but Charles escaped this trap and withdrew east towards Adelsberg (now Postojna) then north east towards Laybach (Ljubljana), with Bernadotte in pursuit.
Napoleon now turned north. Guyeux was sent to chase Bayalitsch through Cividale and Caporetto while Napoleon and Sérurer advanced up the Isonzo towards Caporetto. At the same time Masséna was advancing towards the Tarvis pass. On 20 March he captured Chiusa, at the southern end of the Pontebba pass, and on 21 March he reached Pontebba.
Charles now realised that Bajalich's column was in serious danger, with Masséna ahead of him and Napoleon close behind. Tarvis was defended by a weak force under General Ocskay, made up of the survivors of Lusignan's division. Charles made a dash through the mountains, using a minor pass at Krainberg (near Arnoldstein, east of Tarvis) and reached Villach. There he gathered together around 6,000 men and advanced towards Tarvis.
The exact sequence of events around Tarvis is somewhat obscure, with different sources giving different details. The basic outline seems clear &ndash Masséna captured the pass. Charles counterattacked and drove the French east back towards Pontebba. Masséna then gathered his entire division together and retook the pass. Bajalich then arrived on the scene, although his exact route is not given, and found himself trapped between Masséna and Napoleon. Bajalich and around 4,000 of his men were captured. The name generally given to this battle is Malborghetto (23 March 1797), but that village is some way west of the top of the pass, where the fighting against Charles is said to have taken place, and so may refer to the capture of Bajalich. At the end of this battle Charles withdrew to Klagenfurt.
Napoleon was now across the Alps, and in the valley of the Drave. He was still faced by a large Austrian army, and Charles was now beginning to receive reinforcements. Napoleon had taken this into account, and soon after crossing the Tagliamento had ordered Joubert to join him on the Drave.
Joubert's own campaign had been just as successful as Napoleons. He was facing two Austrian generals &ndash Kerpen and Laudon &ndash who repeatedly received reinforcements from the north, but he defeated them at St. Michael on 20 March and Neumark on 22 March. After this second defeat the Austrian forces split. Joubert chased Kerpen to Brixen, at the foot of the Brenner Pass, and defeated him twice more, at Klausen (Chiusa) and Mittenwald. Kerpen retreated across the Brenner to Innsbruck, leaving Joubert free to turn east to advance down the Drave.
On 31 March Napoleon advanced to Klagenfurt. His plan was to approach Vienna across the Semmering pass, taking the road that led to Leoben. On 31 March, while at Klagenfurt, he wrote a letter to the Archduke making tentative peace feelers. Napoleon was aware that he was in a vulnerable position. A revolt had broken out in Venice, which threatened his rear, and if the campaign went on too long then the Austrians could concentrate new armies against him. Napoleon needed a quick diplomatic victory.
For the moment all Charles could do was forward the letter to Vienna and attempt to stop Napoleon's advance. On 1 April the French pushed back the Austrian advance guard at St. Veit, their main force at Friesach, and forced them out of the gorges of Neumark. Another victory followed at Unzmarkt (3 April), and on 7 April the French entered Leoben.
Napoleon's advance had triggered a panic in Vienna. While the court prepared to evacuate the city, Generals Bellegrade and Meerfeld were sent to Leoben to ask for a ten day armistice. Napoleon agreed to five days, and pushed his advance guards forward to Semmering. Negotiations began on 13 April, and 18 April resulted in the Preliminaries of Leoben. The Emperor Francis II agreed to surrender Belgium to France and to acknowledge France's new frontier on the Rhine. Lombardy was also surrendered, and the new republics in northern Italy acknowledged (Cisalpine around Milan and Cispadine around Modena). In return Austria was to be given Venice's land provinces in northern Italy although at this stage Venice herself was to remain independent. Although the negotiations dragged on for most of the year, Leoben marked the effective end of the War of the First Coalition. Napoleon spent most of 1797 as the virtual ruler of northern Italy, negotiating on equal terms with the Austrian emperor. The peace was finally formalised as Treaty of Campo Fornio (17th October 1797).
Buhlul Lodi established the Lodhi Dynasty and he ruled from 1451- 1526. He was previously the governor of Sarhind (in Punjab), under the Sultan of Delhi Alauddin Alam, of the Saiyid Dynasty (1414-1451). Due to the weak position of the Saiyid dynasty, Buhlul Lodhi took advantage, he first occupied the province of Punjab and later on, captured Delhi and became the Sultan of Delhi on April 19, 1451 under the title of Sultan Abul Muzzaffar Buhlul Shah Ghazi.
During his rule though there were numerous attempts to destabilize the empire, Buhlul managed to stand by the Lodhis. He captured a number of nearby states. This was the only Afghan dynasty to rule over the Delhi Sultanate, with the exception of Sher Shah Suri. Buhlul Khan seized the throne and managed the kingdom without much resistance from the then ruler, Alam Shah. Buhlul Khans territory was spread across Jaunpur, Gwalior & Uttar Pradesh. In 1486, he appointed his eldest son Barbak Shah as the Viceroy of Jaunpur.
Due to the death of Buhlul Lodhi in July 1489, his son Nizam Khan succeeded him, under the title Sikandar Shah. He turned out to be the most capable ruler of the Lodhi Dynasty. Sikandar Shah established a fair system of administration & founded the historical city of Agra. His empire extended from Punjab to Bihar and he also signed a treaty with the ruler of Bengal, Alauddin Hussain Shah.Sikandar Shah was the one who founded a new town where the modern day Agra stands and was known to be a kind and generous ruler who cared for his subjects.
Sikandar's death emerged the fight for succession between his sons, which resulted in the decline of rule of the Lodhi dynasty. Ibrahim Lodhi, son of Sikander, was the last Sultan of the Lodhi Dynasty. Zahiruddin Babur, the Mughal ruler from Central Asia, attacked India and defeated Ibrahim in the first battle of Panipat on April 21, 1526.
As the time came for Ibrahim to ascend the throne of Lodhi Dynasty, the political structure in the Dynasty had dissolved due to abandoned trade routes and depleted the treasury.
The Deccan was a coastal trade route, but in the late 15th century the supply lines collapsed. The decline and failure of specific trade route resulted in cutting off supplies from the coast to the interior, where the Lodi Empire resided. The Dynasty was not in a position to protect itself from the warfare if it would break out on the trade route roads therefore, the trade routes where not utilised and thus their trade declined, so further did their treasury leaving them vulnerable to internal political problems.
3.4: The Great City-States of the Renaissance
- Christopher Brooks
- Full-time faculty (History) at Portland Community College
In the fourteenth and the first half of the fifteenth centuries, the city-states of northern Italy were aggressive rivals most of the formerly-independent cities were swallowed up by the most powerful among them. However, as the power of the French monarchy grew in the west and the Ottoman Turks became an active threat in the east, the most powerful cities signed a treaty, the Peace of Lodi, in 1454 which committed each city to the defense of the existing political order. For the next forty years, Italy avoided major conflicts, a period that coincided with the height of the Renaissance.
The great city-states of this period were Milan, Venice, and Florence. Milan was the archetypal despot-controlled city-state, reaching its height under the Visconti family from 1277 &ndash 1447. Milan controlled considerable trade from Italy to the north. Its wealth was dwarfed, however, by that of Venice.
Ottoman Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent ascended the Ottoman throne after the death of his father Sultan Selim I in 1520. Four years later in 1524, Shah Tahmasp came to the Safavid throne after Shah Ismail's death.
In 1534, Suleiman the Magnificent conquered Baghdad, which controlled the Euphrates and Tigris rivers and thus controlled regional and international trade.
In the 1555 Treaty of Amasya, Shah Tahmasp acknowledged recent Ottoman conquests in Iraq, and Baghdad remained in Ottoman hands until 1918 except for the short period of 1623–38, when the Safavids held the city.
Shah Tahmasp I is also known for giving military aid to the second Mughal emperor Humayun when he was defeated by Sher Shah Suri first in the Battle of Chausa in 1539 and later in the Battle of Kannauj in 1540. After losing the battle, Humayun escaped and reached Iran in 1544.
Apart from the Ottomans, the Safavids also repeatedly waged wars against the Shaybanid Uzbeks, who had replaced the Timurids as rulers of Transoxania at the beginning of the 16th century.
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5 Minute History
On this day, June 18, 656, Ali bin Abu Talib was elected as the fourth Rashidun Caliph.
After the assassination of Uthman bin Affan, the Muhajirun and the Ansar gathered around Ali. Initially, Ali refused to accept the office, but when some notable companions of the Holy Prophet ﷺ, in addition to the residents of Medina, urged him to accept the offer, he finally agreed. A number of other notable companions gave allegiance to him, while there were others including Muawiyah bin Sufyan who rebelled against him.
Here is Ali's first Khutab as the caliph:
Almighty and Glorious Allah has sent down a Book that guides. In it, He has made clear what is good and what is evil, so take hold of the good and leave the evil. Perform the religious duties to Allah, and He will lead you to Paradise.
Allah has made a number of inviolable ordinances, which are well known, and He has favored the inviolability of the Muslim over all others, strengthening the Muslims with the declaration and belief in one God.
A Muslim is someone from whom people are safe, except when there is just cause and it is not allowed to harm a Muslim, except when it is obligatory. Hasten to the common cause, because the particular cause of each individual is death.
The people are in front of you and behind you, urging you on, remember, it is the Hour! Keep your load [of sins] light, and you will reach [Paradise quickly]. People are simply awaiting their Hereafter.
Servants of Allah! Fear Him in your dealings with His other servants and His places. You are responsible even for land and animals, so obey Almighty and Glorious Allah!
Don't go against Him! So when you see good, follow it when you see bad, leave it alone. "Remember when you were few in the land and considered weak."
Treaty of Lodi - History
Cambridge University Press
0521827248 - Peace Treaties and International Law in European History - From the Late Middle Ages to World War One - Edited by Randall Lesaffer
Since the 1960s and more particularly since the end of the Cold War, interest in the history of international law has greatly increased among international lawyers and legal historians alike. 1 Nevertheless, as an academic discipline, it is still lagging behind compared to most other branches of legal history. Recent efforts cannot be expected to make up for the neglect the field has suffered during most of the past two centuries.
The causes of the traditional neglect of the history of international law are many and much debated. 2 Paramount among them is – or was? – the dominance of national states and national law. This caused lawyers and legal historians to concentrate on internal legal developments. Moreover, in the heyday of state sovereignty, the binding character of public international law came to be disputed or even denied, which surely caused legal historians to turn away from its study.
Notwithstanding the efforts of many scholars from all over the world during recent decades, the study of international law is still lagging behind the field. Fundamental methodological questions have not been answered or even seriously debated. 3 Most of the sources – even the most important ones like treaties – still await modern, critical editions. The vast majority of recent scholarship still tends to concentrate, as it has been the case before, on doctrine and not on legal practice. And above all, most of the endeavours of recent years have been individual. There have hardly been any sustained, coordinated efforts, nor is the field organised.
Two initiatives – which saw the light of day in the late 1990s – have brought some change in that last respect. At the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History in Frankfurt a research project was set up under the leadership of Ingo Hueck on the German contribution to international legal doctrine in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. In 1999, thanks to the endeavours of R. St. J. Macdonald (Dalhousie Law School), the first issue of The Journal of the History of International Law was published.
International coordination of research in the history of international law is of the utmost importance. Not only is it expedient to join forces for practical reasons and to allow scholars to enter into discussions with their colleagues, but it is also necessary to protect this young and not fully grown field from the ‘slings and arrows of outrageous fortune’. After all, the resurgence of interest in the history of international law is not unique. Even today, it is still not safe to submit that present interest is more fundamental than it is fashionable. We are living in an era of great change in current international law. As before, it is just that which causes historical reflection on international law to be more popular. The periods of World War Ⅰ and, somewhat less, World War Ⅱ were also marked by a brief and limited increase in popularity of historical discourse among international lawyers and, though to a lesser extent, legal historians.
This book is the result of an attempt to bring together those European scholars from different backgrounds who over the last decades have worked on historical peace treaties. Among the contributors to this volume are legal historians, Roman lawyers, international lawyers, diplomatic historians and an International Relations theorist. Though all present were acquainted with one another’s work, for many of them the meeting at Tilburg University on 30 and 31 March 2001 where they presented and discussed their ideas was the first occasion to meet colleagues in the flesh. It was physical proof of the necessity to combine efforts and coordinate work.
Peace Treaties and International Law in European History delves into the history of peace treaties as legal instruments in early modern Europe (late fifteenth century to 1920). However, the book by no means exhausts the subject. It draws from the most recent research, by both the contributors and others, but at the same time indicates the many lacunae that still exist there. In many respects, the book seeks to open debate and not to end it.
The scope of the book is twofold. Both the law which governs peace treaties – peace treaty law – and the law as it emerged from peace treaties are under scrutiny. The book goes beyond the analysis of treaties as legal instruments to the analysis of peace treaties as sources of the law of nations. Even the term ‘source’ is to be understood in both senses: treaties as historical sources for the existing rules of substantive international law and treaties as traités lois constitutive for new rules of material international law. In short, it is felt by the authors that the study of peace treaties is an appropriate way to start systematic and coordinated research into the history of international legal practice. As one of the main instruments used among the primary subjects and authors of the law of nations, peace treaties are a microcosm of that law. Moreover, while the book is an attempt to break through the traditional concentration on doctrine and turn to legal practice as well, the historical discourse of scholars is not overlooked.
There are two important limitations to the scope of the book. First, there is a geographical one. This is a history of European peace treaty practice. For the most part, treaties between and with non-European powers are excluded, and the whole problem of European expansion and colonialism is largely overlooked. Certainly this last limitation is an important one. Nowadays, more and more scholars accept that the confrontation of Europe from the 1500s onwards with the world beyond Europe was of the utmost importance for the formation of modern international law. Though the authors of this book do not deny this, it is felt that its impact only came to change the fundamental structure of international law from the nineteenth century onwards. Heinhard Steiger, who covers this period in this volume, therefore includes this issue in his chapter. 4
Second, there is a limitation as regards the period covered. The book concentrates on the early modern era and the nineteenth century. While the Peace Treaties of Westphalia of 1648 have for a long time been held to be the very birth certificates of the modern European states system and its law of nations, the book goes farther back beyond this epochal date. While it cannot be denied that Westphalia is a benchmark in the history of the law of nations, the Peace Treaties of Westphalia as well as later treaties drew on a tradition of peace treaties and law that was older. Since the beginning of the twentieth century, it has become quite common to push back the beginnings of the modern law of nations to the sixteenth century and to the writings of the Spanish neo-scholastics, Francisco de Vitoria (c. 1480) being first and foremost among them. While the early sixteenth century is indicated because of developments in doctrine, there are also events in general and political history such as the rise of the great dynastic states and the Reformation, which had an important impact on peace treaty practice. These considerations force us to take the whole sixteenth century and even the late fifteenth century into account. It is surely rewarding to include the practices of the Italian states of the late fifteenth century, as Italy is often considered to be a laboratory for later European diplomatic practices. 5
The choice of the Peace Treaties of Paris (1919ተ), which ended the Great War, as terminus ad quem is a more obvious one. These treaties, and particularly the Peace Treaty of Versailles between the Allied victors of the Great War and Germany, marked a fundamental turning point in the history of international law. Not only was it the first punitive peace between sovereigns since at least the late Middle Ages, thus dealing a serious blow to state sovereignty, but it also was the starting point for the era of international organisations. 6 Moreover, during the twentieth century, peace treaties gradually lost their monopoly in the field of peace settlement. After World War Ⅱ, many wars did not end with the conclusion of a peace treaty. One of the most important recent wars, the Second Gulf War (1991) was ended by means of a UN Security Council Resolution. Many wars only led to armistices, while others just died out and peace was restored without an explicit juridical settlement.
The book is subdivided into four parts. In Part Ⅰ, chapters 2 to 4 offer a chronological survey of the legal history of peace treaties and their contributions to international law from the Peace of Lodi (1454) to the Treaties of Paris (1919ተ). The authors Randall Lesaffer, Heinz Duchhardt and Heinhard Steiger summarise the findings of recent research. As there is much more accessible secondary literature on the era between 1648 and 1815, and as many features of peace treaty practice of that era are common knowledge, Duchhardt can concentrate on some less well-known aspects.
Part Ⅱ, ‘Thinking peace: voices from a distant past’, takes us back in time, beyond the early modern era. One of the central assumptions underlying this book is that early modern peace treaty law drew on a long tradition of thought and practice, which was rooted in the late Middle Ages, which in its turn, like all medieval scholarship, referred back to Antiquity. Christian Baldus, a specialist in Roman treaty practice, discusses the legal dimension of Roman peace treaty practice. Karl-Heinz Ziegler, another specialist in Roman treaty law, assesses the impact of Roman law on medieval doctrine and practice. Hanna Vollrath and Alain Wijffels address two important issues of canon law influence on the medieval ‘law of peace’. Vollrath’s exposition of the role of ritual, and more particularly the kiss, in the process of peacemaking illustrates the emergence of canon law as the primary source of the medieval ius gentium. Alain Wijffels’s chapter is the very first in-depth analysis of the most comprehensive autonomous treatise on peace treaty law from the learned tradition of medieval ius commune, a work by the fifteenth-century Italian canon lawyer Martinus Garatus Laudensis. An edition of this treatise by Wijffels forms an appendix to this volume. With these four chapters, the authors aspire to offer insights into the ideas and practices of the Middle Ages that, partly through the prestige the learned ius commune continued to enjoy, are felt to have thoroughly influenced the modern law of nations in its formative period, until deep into the seventeenth century. To assess the exact impact of medieval and classical ideas on modern peace treaties and the modern law of nations would take many decades of systematic research. However, Dominique Bauer and Laurens Winkel – the former as regards canon law, the latter as regards Roman law – try to disperse some of the clouds by highlighting some examples.
While the doctrine of the seventeenth century was overshadowed by its dialectical debate with medieval scholarship, rationalism and the Enlightenment caused the eighteenth- and nineteenth-century scholars to look ahead. The third part, ‘Thinking peace: towards a better future’, highlights three aspects of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century thinking about peace. Marc Bélissa illustrates the contribution of the French eighteenth-century philosophe Mably. Ingo Hueck and Mathias Schmoeckel turn to the decades before and after 1900 when from different angles the existing sovereign state system was challenged and the idea of securing peace through international organisations won ground. Hueck offers a synthesis of recent research on German scholarship and its role in the Hague Peace Conferences of 1899 and 1907, while Schmoeckel in discussing the ideas of Lassa Oppenheim gives a better insight into the impact of the Paris Peace Treaties of 1919ተ on international law. Andreas Osiander’s chapter holds a somewhat peculiar place, as he does not address historical thought, but approaches the subject from the perspective of social science, and more specifically International Relations theory. In fact, he claims that the political discourse surrounding peace negotiations often sheds more light on the structural and legal context within which a treaty has to be considered than contemporary doctrine.
The last part, ‘Making peace: aspects of treaty practice’, concentrates on four fundamental aspects of early modern European treaty practice on which somewhat more research has already been done. Ronald Asch and Christian Tomuschat turn to two of the most epochal peace settlements of the era discussed, Westphalia and Versailles. Over the last few years, in the context of the 350th anniversary of the Westphalia Peace Treaties, a vast amount of literature on these Treaties saw the light of day, and Asch has selected an aspect which has received surprisingly little attention, the right of the imperial estates to make alliances with other estates and with foreign powers. In addressing this issue, Asch clarifies some of the difficulties of interpretation historians have met in dealing with the Peace Treaties of Wespthalia because of their hybrid nature as both international peace treaties and constitutional instruments. Tomuschat sheds light on the importance of Versailles through a comparison with the peace settlement that ended the Franco-German war of 1870ኣ. Karl-Heinz Ziegler contributed a second chapter, this time on the peace treaties between Christian powers and the Turkish Empire. Even in a book on peace treaties between European – read Christian – powers, the continuous relations with the major non-Christian European power of the early modern era could not be neglected. Finally, Stephen Neff goes into the problem of restoring commercial relations between former enemies which, during the era discussed, was often done in separate treaties.
Peace treaties and international law from
Lodi to Versailles (1454)
Peace treaties from Lodi to Westphalia
The myth of Westphalia
Historians and international lawyers alike have for a long time been quite unanimous in calling the Peace Treaties of Westphalia of 1648 the very birth certificates of the modern European states system and the modern law of nations. In the context of the 350th anniversary of these treaties, scholars from various countries and disciplines have gone a long way to challenging this Westphalian myth. 1
Traditionally, it was alleged that the Westphalian Treaties laid down the basic principles of the modern law of nations, such as sovereignty, equality, religious neutrality and the balance of power. However, this cannot be sustained after a careful analysis of the treaties themselves and a comparison with older peace treaties. These principles are to be found in none of the three main Westphalian Peace Treaties, at least not as principles of international law. 2 In fact, references about the sovereignty and equality of religions can only be found in the treaties when they concern the constitutional arrangement for the Holy Roman Empire. Moreover, these reminiscences are not new or innovative. It was only some decades after 1648 that diplomats and jurists started to see these clauses as reflecting upon international relations. This transposition of what are in fact internal constitutional arrangements to the domain of the international, or better European, legal order can be explained by the hybrid character of the Treaty of Osnabrück of 24 October 1648, between the Empire and Sweden, and of the Treaty of Münster of the same date, between the Empire and France. Those two treaties are both international peace treaties between the Empire, its estates and a foreign power and an internal, constitutional-religious settlement for the Holy Roman Empire. The clauses that lay down international peace are far from original and do not allow an assessment of the Westphalia Peace Treaties as constituting a caesura in the technical-juridical development of peace treaty practice and law.
Nevertheless, the period of the Westphalia Peace and the decade that followed does constitute an important caesura in the development of the European legal order as a whole. The Westphalia Peace Treaties put an end to the last long and bitter religious war in Europe. They also succeeded in more or less pacifying the Holy Roman Empire and thereby giving more stability to Central Europe. Moreover, the 1640s and 1650s saw the last important rebellions and civil wars within the most important European powers such as France, Spain and England. These decades also marked the end of a century of religious strife among and religious and civil turmoil within the most powerful European countries, which had wrecked the old European legal order. In short, the Westphalia Peace Treaties did not lay down the basic principles of the modern law of nations they did, however, lay down the political and religious conditions for allowing the European powers to start building a new international legal order. 3
The crisis of the European legal order
Since the beginning of the twentieth century, international legal historians have come to modify the traditional view that the modern doctrine of the law of nations stems from the seventeenth century. While the impact of the Dutch humanist Hugo Grotius (1583) on modern doctrine is still considered to be enormous, most historians now accept that Grotius and his successors largely drew from the writings of their sixteenth-century predecessors. At present, it is common to stress the continuity between the different writers on international problems of the sixteenth century and the modern international lawyers of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. 4
Losers in history
Who do you think are the greatest losers in history. and you favourite?
Who do you think deserves the "historical facepalm award" for his failures?
Perdiccas: one of Alexander's "tier one" generals,Perdicca decided to assert himself after the death of the King of Makedon, but failed to unite most of the Diadochi and was soon despised by his own officers, who decided to have him assassinated in 321.
Crassus(115-53 BCE): despite his enormous wealth, he is mostly remembered for being the least talented of the triumvirs and for his disastrous campaign against the Parthians that led to his violent death.
Sigismondo Pandolfo Malatesta(1517-69): one of the most sought-after condottieri of his time and lord of important cities like Rimini,Fano and Senigallia. Due to an "unfortunate" twist of events, he was left out of the Peace of Lodi and found himself against most of the Italian powers(the Pope, the King of Naples,Venice the Duke of Urbino).At the end he lost everything,save a small strip of land around Rimini(where the construction of the Malatesta Temple was stopped due to a lack of fundings). He died from malaric fever after a difficult campaign against the Ottoman Empire,started in order to "re-establish" his reputation.
He is considered the "best loser in history" by Ezra Pound.
Charles of Burgundy(1433-77)(my favourite): the man who wanted to create an empire stretching from the Mediterranean to the North Sea and with the best army of his time simply ended up repeatedly beaten by the Swiss Confederation(nothin' more than a bunch of mountain men) until he was himself killed at Nancy
Imagawa Yoshimoto(1519-60: the daimyo who wanted to assert his authority over Kyoto an beyond, was caught with his fundoshi down by Oda Nobunaga, who destroyed his ambitions in just a moment, when he ambushed Yoshimoto's 30 thousand strong army with just 300 hundred warriors and gave a terrible headache to the Imagawa daimyo.
Takeda Katsuyori(1546-82): the heir of Takeda Shingen, one of the greatest daimyo of Japanese history, decided to honour the memory of his late father with an in style offensive against the province of Mikawa,the military operations obviously ended in a failure: Katsuyori lost most of his army and his veteran generals during the battle of Nagashino(1575) against Oda Nobunaga, who permanently cancelled him from the political map of Japan in 1582, after years of somewhat miserable resistance.
Moreover, Katsuyori never proved to be a good administrator of the lands inherited by Shingen.
One of my favourite "facepalm" events in history is undoubtedly the Imperial Election of 1519: the king of France Francis I decided to bribe the electors before the vote in order to get their support, while Charles said to them "i will simply pay you after my election" so the electors doubled the profit, at the expenses of the "unwise" Francis.