The Franco-Prussian War

The Franco-Prussian War


Essential Histories
  • Author: Stephen Badsey
  • Short code: ESS
  • Publication Date: 20 Jan 2022
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Updated and revised, with full-colour maps and new images throughout, this concise study examines the Franco-Prussian war, a significant conflict which led to the collapse of the Second Empire and the creation of a unified Germany.

The Franco-Prussian War broke out in 1870 when Otto von Bismarck engineered a war with the French Second Empire under Napoleon III. This was part of his wider political strategy of uniting Prussia with the southern German states, excluding Austria. In this book, Dr Stephen Badsey examines the build-up, battles, and impact of the war, which was an overwhelming Prussian victory with massive consequences. The French Second Empire collapsed, Napoleon III became an exile in Britain, and King Wilhelm I was proclaimed Emperor of the new united Germany. In the peace settlement with the French Third Republic in 1871 Germany gained the eastern French provinces of Alsace and Lorraine, areas that were to provide a bone of contention for years to come.

Biographical Note

Stephen Badsey PhD MA (Cantab.) FRHistS is Professor of Conflict Studies at the University of Wolverhampton. He has previously held positions at the Imperial War Museum London, at the BBC, on the academic staff of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, and at other institutions. He has published widely on military subjects ranging from the Crimean War to the future of warfare, and has made frequent contributions as a historian for television and other media. He is based in the UK.


(Subject to confirmation)
Background to war
Warring sides
The fighting
The world around war
How the war ended
Conclusion and consequences
Further reading

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