Tuesday, October 9, 2007

1815 to 1816

1815. The Battle of Waterloo ends the career of Napoleon.

1815. The Battle of New Orleans, January 8, gives Americans their chief land victory in the War of 1812. It follows by two weeks the Treaty of Ghent that ended the war last December, but neither side is aware of the treaty. British troops try to seize New Orleans, French pirate-smuggler Jean Laffite reveals British plans to Gen. Andrew Jackson, many of Laffite's men join in the battle on the American side, and the British retire after 700 of their troops have been killed, 1,400 wounded. U.S. losses are 8 dead and 13 wounded.

1815. The Emperor Napoleon hears of discontent under France's restored Bourbon monarchy, leaves Elba, and lands at Cannes with 1,500 men, attracting thousands to his cause as he marches on Paris.

1815. A new alliance mobilizes to oppose the Little Corporal's renewed threat to peace. Austria, Prussia, Russia and Britain raise a million men.

1815. Napoleon abdicates once more Taken as a prisoner of war to the island of st. Helena in the South Atlantic, he will live there until his death in 1821.

1815. Switzerland is established as an independent confederation of 22 cantons.

1815. The New York State legislature approves a plan to finance an Erie Canal.

"To a Waterfowl." Wm. Cullen Bryant. American. 1815. Poetry. Describes flight of bird, which renews belief in divine guidance.

Adolphe. Benjamin Constant de Rebecque. French. 1815. Novel. Precursor of modern psychological novel. Protagonist deeply influenced by a woman of strong intellectual convictions.

Guy Mannering. Sir Walter Scott. British. 1815. Novel. Soap opera plot. Noted for characters Meg Merrilies and Dandie Dinmont.

"The Destruction of Sennacherib." Lord Byron. British. 1815. Poetry. Vividly portrays the plague that struck down the invading army of the Assyrian king in Palestine, 7th century, BC.

1816. Brazil proclaims herself an empire.

1816. Argentina declares herself independent of Spain.

1816. President Madison's Secretary of State James Monroe wins election to the presidency.

1816. The Luddite movement that was suppressed in 1813 revives as a dismal harvest produces economic depression throughout Britain. Well-organized efforts are made to smash machinery in riots at many industrial centers. The movement will continue until rising prosperity ends it.

Headlong Hall. Thomas Love Peacock. British. 1816. Novel. Brilliantly witty. Satire of the idealistic aspirations of romanticism.

"The Prisoner of Chillon." Lord Byron. British. 1816. Poetry. Effects of long imprisonment--he becomes used to it.

Emma. Jane Austen. British. 1816. Novel. Emma plays matchmaker and causes trouble. Themes of self-delusion, class, decorum. Includes the garrulous Miss Bates.

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