How Metternich influenced European politics

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Role of Metternich in European politics

Metternich was born on 15th May 1773.  Metternich was born in Austria in a wealthy family. Some of his family members were in important positions in the Austrian Government Services. Metternich studied Philosophy, Law, and books related to diplomacy. He stepped into the shoe of his father by choosing to become an ambassador. From 1809 to 1821 he served Austria as the foreign affairs minister. He played a greater role than Napoleon Bonaparte in European politics. Metternich played a crucial role in his life as the president of Congress of Vienna.

Metternich as an ambassador to France

In the battle of Austerlitz, Austria was defeated by France. After this war, Metternich was sent to France as an Austrian ambassador. Metternich observed Napoleon very closely. He observed that France was in need of discipline and the Napoleon was the only one who can teach discipline to France.

Metternich as the Foreign affairs minister

In October 1809 Metternich was appointed as the foreign affairs minister. The only aim of Metternich was to rescue Austria till the end of Napoleon.

Metternich wanted to end the rule of Napoleon. Metternich arranged Napoleon matrimonial alliance with Marie Louise, daughter of Austrian Emperor Francis I. Marie Louise was Napoleon’s second wife.

In 1812, when France invaded on Russia, Metternich made Napoleon believe that Austria would help him in the war. But strategically, secretly Metternich helped Russia. After the defeat of Napoleon, Metternich started openly opposing France and united European nations against Napoleon. on 26th June 1813, for the last time Metternich met Napoleon and openly said that he would soon end Napoleon.

Russia, Prussia and Britain defeated Napoleon, with the help of Austria,

After this Francis I, Austrian Emperor, proclaimed Metternich as the prince of Austria.

World after Napoleon

Metternich played important role in the decisions taken by Congress of Vienna. When Napoleon escaped from Elba, Vienna congress was temporarily disturbed. In no time, Napoleon was defeated in battle of Waterloo.

Metternich opined that with the friendly relations among the developed nations only Europe can continue peace. Metternich’s aim was to keep Austria externally powerful and internally peaceful.

Metternich favoured oligarchy. He firmly believed that kings are there to rule and people are to be ruled. He did not want common people to take over power. He resented revolts, liberalists and nationalist.

Metternich used to discuss in periodic congress on the issue of suppressing the revolts.

In 1821, Metternich was appointed as Austrian Court Chancellor and later as Chancellor.

He played key role in the European politics until he had to resign to his position due to a revolt in Vienna in the year 1848.

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