Social Studies - 2019-20

WHII.8d - Napoleon and the Congress of Vienna

The student will apply social science skills to understand the changes in European nations between 1800 and 1900 by

d) assessing the impact of Napoleon and the Congress of Vienna on political power in Europe;

Adopted: 2015



The French Revolution left a powerful legacy for world history: secular society, nationalism, and democratic ideas.

Napoleon’s attempt to unify Europe under French domination was unsuccessful.

The Congress of Vienna attempted to restore Europe as it had been before the French Revolution and Napoleonic conquests.


Legacy of Napoleon

 Unsuccessful attempt to unify Europe under French domination

 Napoleonic Code

 Awakening of feelings of national pride and the growth of nationalism

Legacy of the Congress of Vienna

 “Balance of power” doctrine

 Restoration of monarchies

 New political map of Europe

 New political philosophies (liberalism, conservatism)

National pride, economic competition, and democratic ideals stimulated the growth of nationalism.

The terms of the Congress of Vienna led to widespread discontent in Europe, especially in Italy and the German states. Unsuccessful revolutions of 1848 increased nationalistic tensions.

In contrast to continental Europe, the United Kingdom expanded political rights through legislative means and made slavery illegal in the British Empire.


Updated: Jun 01, 2018