Came about due to cultural restraints, a moral reaction to the 17th Century wars of religion. States tended to have more limited tax and recruitment bases. Constitutional limits existed on the size of armies and how they could be...
Limited warfare whereby governments encouraged military commanders not to risk large, expensive armies.
1784 Kettle War - Dutch Republic vs Habsburg Monarchy.
Changes arose due to rapid population growth across continental Europe. Larger armies were becoming the new 'norm' with Napoleon boasting of having an "income of 200,000 men a year."
"It is no cause for wonder that once war became more popular, it should have become more violent" (Howard).
Napoleon becomes Emperor of France in 1804.
French victory over Austrian-Russian forces at Austerlitz, 1805.
Prussian defeat at Jena, 1806 & Russia at Friedland, 1807.
1808-14: Peninsula War 'Spanish Ulcer'.
1812: Ill-fated French invasion of Russia.
1814: Invasion of France
1815: Napoleons final defeat at Waterloo
The post-war settlement: the Congress of Vienna and the Concert of Europe.
An object lesson in the impact of industrialization on warfare - railways, steamships, telegraphs and the sort. New artillery and rifle technology come about with heavy casualties, notably against heavily entrenched positions.
Post defeat by Napoleon in 1806 the Prussian Military creates the first 'General Staff' - a body of rigorously trained military experts with common methods and doctrine. This new professionalism gave the Prussian military a decisive advantage against...
These Prussian victories facilitated the unification of Germany in 1871.
The Royal Navy is dominant from 1805 until the Second world war. The 19th century saw huge revolutions in naval technology. Steam-power gave navies speed, maneuverability, heavier armaments, revolving turrets and amour.
Combination of maritime, economic and diplomatic power to achieve Britain's goals. Major wars were bad for commerce, and commerce was essential for Britain.
A traditional distrust of large standing armies. Reliance upon the Royal Navy for security.
"Small Wars" for colonial security/expansion. Britain was most happy to engage in these, it's clear British interests are global in spread.
Anglo-Burmese wars 1824-1885*
Anglo-Persian war 1856-57
Anglo-Zulu war 1879
First Boer war 1880-81
Mahdist war 1881-99
and so on.
Expected to be a short, cheap war with an easy victory. 3 defeats suffered during 'Black Week' which saw Britain dedicate more men and resources. 300,000 troops and a budget rise from £117 to £205*
Troops are taken away from other Imperial frontiers such as the British Raj. This forced Britain's hand leading to the formation of alliances with Japan (1902), France (1904), and Russia (1907).
Splendid isolation to the era of alliances.
"By 1914, the political, economic, social, technological and doctrinal trends of the 19th century had collapsed into a recipe for catastrophe" (Sheehan).
States regimented industry, the economy and domestic populations.
Napoleonic doctrines of manoeuvre, and decisive battle died in the statement of the Western Front.