Profile of the Crimean War
The Crimean War was a conflict fought between the Russian Empire and the allied forces of the
Hi, I’m Jade. Today for About.com, I’m going to tell you about the Crimean War.Beginning in October of 1853, the Crimean War was a conflict fought between the Russian Empire and the allied forces of the French, British, and Ottoman Empires, who also had the help of Sardinia-Piedmont. The majority of the war was fought on the Crimean Peninsula off the coast of Ukraine, and the conflict was settled when the Treaty of Paris was signed on March 30, 1856. It was actually the Turkish who first declared war on the Russian Empire in October of 1853. Russia’s expansion in the early 19th century had begun to threaten the interests of Austria, Turkey, and Britain, and France had a grudge to bear, having been defeated by Russia in 1812. Although the Crimean War was clearly an attempt to check Russia’s expansionist tendencies, it was technically fought under the guise of securing control of the Holy Places in Jerusalem.The fighting began with the allies’ invasion of the Crimea in September of 1854. Although the allies were successful in driving the Russians out of the area north of Sevastopol, the Russians were able to further fortify their position within the city, itself. Skirting the Russian stronghold, the allies next attacked at Balaclava on October 24—a battle that ended with one of the most well-known blunders in military history.It is still disputed as to how British commander Lord Raglan’s orders got confused at Balaclava, but the result was that the allies’ light cavalry headed straight into the wrong Russian position—a line of battle for which they were in no way prepared. 118 of the 620 allied soldiers in the Charge of the Light Brigade were killed, but they successfully struck fear into the hearts of the Russian troops with their extreme courage. At the Battle of Inkerman on November 5, the two sides fought again, this time with heavy Russian losses. Over the winter of 1854 to 1855, Sardinia joined the allied forces, and after a failed attempt in June, the allies finally took Sevastopol on September 9, 1855. In the end, the Crimean War is remembered for the huge number of soldiers lost and especially for the neglect, malnutrition, and disease. It marked the disintegration of the Vienna Settlement, and it laid the groundwork for the rise of Italy and Germany.Thanks for watching. For more information about the Crimean War, be sure to check out About.com.