Siege of Ancona

Last updated
Siege of Ancona
Part of the Neapolitan War
Date5–30 May 1815
Location
Ancona, present-day Italy
Result Anglo-Austrian victory
Belligerents
Flag of the Habsburg Monarchy.svg  Austrian Empire
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland
Flag of the Kingdom of Naples (1811).svg  Kingdom of Naples
Strength
2,300 1,500
Casualties and losses
light 500 killed or wounded
1,000 captured

Siege of Ancona was a battle in the Neapolitan War. It took place beginning on the 5th May 1815 and persisted until the 30th May 1815. [1] The battle took place mere days after the Battle of Tolentino on the 3rd May 1815. [1]

Neapolitan War conflict

The Neapolitan War was a conflict between the Napoleonic Kingdom of Naples and the Austrian Empire. It started on 15 March 1815 when King Joachim Murat declared war on Austria and ended on 20 May 1815 with the signing of the Treaty of Casalanza. The war occurred during the Hundred Days between Napoleon's return from exile and before he left Paris to be decisively defeated at the Battle of Waterloo. The war was triggered by a pro-Napoleon uprising in Naples, and ended with a decisive Austrian victory at the Battle of Tolentino after which Bourbon monarch Ferdinand IV was reinstated as King of Naples and Sicily. However, the intervention by Austria caused resentment in Italy, which further spurred on the drive towards Italian unification.

Contents

The siege of Ancona was one of the last battles in Italy during the Neapolitan War. [1] The city of Ancona was the last major Italian city to surrender. [1] It was fought between Napoleon's forces in Ancona, Italy and the Anglo-Austrian alliance during the One Hundred Days’ campaign. The Anglo-Austrian alliance eventually defeated Napoleon's forces, thus helping expel the French from Eastern Italy. It also contributed to the elimination of the Bonaparte monarchy proposed by Murat and led to the establishment of the Papal state. [2]

Battle

An Austrian force commanded by Austrian Major General Menrad Freiherr von Geppert besieged Ancona on the 5th May 1815. [1] The Anglo-Austrian force was 2,300 men strong. [1] Ancona was defended by a garrison of Napoleon's troops, which was composed of 1,500 men. [1] This garrison had been part of Caracossa's brigade, which fought in the Battle of Tolentino. [3] The French lost 500 men to the Anglo-Austrian bombardment before they ultimately surrendered on the 30th of May. [1]

Ramifications

The siege of Ancona cemented the loss of Napoleon's forces in Italy. Ancona was the last major Italian city to surrender to the Austrians, and the battle came shortly before the downfall of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo. [4]

As a result of the expulsion of the French, there arose a power vacuum in Italy. The Italians adamantly refused to support anyone who came in the name of Napoleon. Unification of Italy was Murat's ideal. Murat was an Italian prince who supported Napoleon's bid for power in Italy. As a result of anti-Napoleon sentiment, Murat's attempt to install a Bonaparte monarchy even after the defeat of Napoleon failed to gain traction. His attempt to establish a monarchy in Italy was rejected, and the Bonaparte royalty was completely deposed by the English in Naples at the same time as the end of the siege of Ancona; the 30th May, 1815. Murat had earlier been defeated in battle by the Austrians on the 3rd May 1815 at Tolentino. Unfortunately, this meant that the constitution he proposed before his defeat never took hold. However, his ideals of an independent Italy played a role in the Risorgimento, decades later. [5]

The elimination of the Bourbon influence in Italy after the siege of Ancona paved the way for the Papal state that took power in 1814. The Papal state supported a policy of conservatism in Italy, upholding Austrian influence and opposing revolution and unification. Due to this conservative policy, the Papal state hindered the unification of Italy for many years. The administration of the Papal state was in place until the overthrow of Metternich in 1848. [2]

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References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Showalter, Dennis. The Encyclopedia of Warfare: Revolutionary Wars 1775-c.1815. London: Amber, 2013. Print.
  2. 1 2 Reinerman, Alan. "Metternich and Reform: The Case of the Papal State, 1814-1848." The Journal of Modern History 42.4 (1970): 524. JSTOR. Web.
  3. Schneid, Frederick C. Napoleon's Italian Campaigns 1805-1815. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2002. Print.
  4. Dugdale-Pointon, t (16 November 2000), Napoleonic Wars (1799-1815), http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/wars_napoleonic.html
  5. Martinengo-Cesaresco, Evelyn Lilian Hazeldine Carrington. The Liberation of Italy, 1815-1870. London: Seeley, 1895. Print.

Coordinates: 43°37′00″N13°31′00″E / 43.6167°N 13.5167°E / 43.6167; 13.5167