The Congress that Berlin (June 13 - July 13, 1878) was a conference of the European great Powers" and the footrest Empire"s top statesmen in Berlin in 1878. The was organized under the auspices that the Concert that Europe. In the wake of the Russo-Turkish battle (1877–78), the meeting"s aim was to reorganize the countries of the Balkans. Otto von Bismarck, that led the Congress, undertook to balance the distinct interests that Britain, Russia, and also Austria-Hungary. As a consequence, although assorted compromises were made, differences in between Russia and also Austria-Hungary intensified, as did the nationality question in the Balkans. The congress to be convened to revise the contract of mountain Stefano and to store Constantinople in ottoman hands. It efficiently disavowed Russia"s win over the decaying Ottoman realm in the Russo-Turkish War, 1877-78.

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The congress of Berlin redistributed earlier to the footrest Empire details Bulgarian areas that the previous contract had given to the Principality the Bulgaria, many notably Macedonia. Albania, and Thrace continued to be Ottoman. The congress formally recognized independence of the de facto sovereign claims of Romania, Serbia, and also Montenegro but placed Bosnia and Herzegovina under Austria-Hungary. The conference also collection in motion actions to take control of footrest finances come repay debts fan to european bankers. Top top the one hand, the Congress mirrors what states can achieve when they agree to cooperate. Top top the other hand, the congress subordinated the interests of the people of the Balkans come those that the an excellent Powers. Yet the Congress and also the Concert the Europe did feed into the creation of the organization of Nations; they verified that an elderly representatives the states might meet and also reach binding decisions. The world, however, will stay a location where some civilization experience injustice brought about by others" greed until nations cease come act just or practically always just to promote your self-interest at the cost of the interests of others.


The Congress was attended by the brother Empire, Austria-Hungary, France, the German Empire, Italy, the Russian Empire, and also the ottoman Empire. Delegates indigenous Greece, Romania, Serbia, and Montenegro attended the sessions in which their claims were concerned, but were no members the the congress.

The congress was solicited through the rivals of the Russian Empire, particularly by Austria-Hungary and also Britain, and hosted in 1878 by otto von Bismarck. The conference of Berlin proposed and ratified the treaty of Berlin.

The meetings were organized at Bismarck’s chancellery, the former Radziwill Palace, native June 13, 1878 until July 13, 1878. The conference revised or eliminated 18 of the 29 posts in the contract of san Stefano. Furthermore, utilizing as a structure the contract of Paris (1856) and also Washington (1871), the contract effected a rearrangement the the east situation.


Map of Bulgaria—in 1878—borders ~ the tranquility of mountain Stefano (March 3, 1878) and the Berlin conference (June 1878).

Main issues

The major mission that the world Powers at the congress was to deal a fatal punch to the burgeoning activity of pan-Slavism. The movement brought about serious issue in Berlin and specifically in Vienna, which was afraid that the repressed Slavic nationalities within their own realm would revolt against the Habsburgs. The federal governments in London and also Paris were nervous about the diminishing influence of the Ottoman empire in the south, i beg your pardon invited raised Russian power and also influence in the region, wherein both Britain and France to be poised to colonize Egypt and Palestine. Russia and Austria-Hungary both had vested understanding in the Balkans, i beg your pardon bordered their Empires and where they claimed the right to protect, respectively, eastern Orthodox and also Roman Catholic Christians.

Through the contract of mountain Stefano, the Russians, led by chancellor Alexander Gorchakov, had managed to create the Bulgarian autonomous principality under footrest Empire"s in the name rule, thus sparking brothers well-entrenched fears of farming Russian influence in the East. This state had accessibility to the Aegean Sea and also comprised a very large portion of Macedonia that might have at any kind of time endangered the Straits that different the black Sea native the Mediterranean.

This setup was not acceptable to the brothers Empire, which taken into consideration the whole Mediterranean Sea come be, in effect, a British ball of influence, and also saw any type of Russian attempt to gain accessibility there together a grave hazard to that is power. Simply a week prior to the Congress, prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli had concluded a an enig alliance v the Ottomans versus Russia, whereby Britain was enabled to occupy the strategically placed island of Cyprus. This commitment predetermined Disraeli"s position during the Congress and led that to concern threats come unleash a war against Russia if she did not comply v Turkish demands.

Ceding come Russia"s pressure, Romania, Serbia, and Montenegro were claimed independent principalities. The complete independence of Bulgaria, however, was denied. It was promised autonomy, and guarantees to be made versus Turkish interference, however these were greatly ignored. The Dobruja was provided to Romania; Montenegro derived Niksic, Podgorica, Bar, and also Plav-Gusinje. The Turkish government, or Porte, agreed to follow the specifications included in the Organic legislation of 1868, and also to guarantee the civil legal rights of non-Muslim subjects. Bosnia and Herzegovina were placed under the administration of Austria-Hungary. Austria-Hungary feared nationalist revolts native its own ethnic groups, among whom Slavs were currently well represented. It was, ironically perhaps, the type of nationalism that had led come German and also Italian reunification the was additionally sweeping through the Balkans, the idea that distinctive linguistic-ethnic groups comprised a "nation," particularly if lock were additionally a majority in a provided territory.

Russia agreed that Bulgaria should be break-up up right into three parts. The southwestern component remained under Turkish rule. Eastern Rumelia became an autonomous province and the remainder was the new state that Bulgaria. Russia retained southern Bessarabia and Austria obtained the best to "occupy and also administer" Bosnia and Herzegovina, a controversial clause which at some point precipitated the Bosnian dilemm of 1908.


Bismarck as host

The congress of Berlin is frequently viewed as the culmination of the "Battle the Chancellors" including Alexander Gorchakov that Russia and Otto von Bismarck that Germany. They were able to properly persuade other European leaders the a totally free and elevation Bulgaria would considerably improve the security threats posed by a disintegrating footrest Empire. According to German historian Erich Eyck, Bismarck sustained Russia"s persuasion that "Turkish preeminence over a Christian neighborhood (Bulgaria) to be an anachronism i beg your pardon undoubtedly provided rise to insurrection and bloodshed and should thus be ended."<1> He used the great Eastern situation of 1875 as proof of cultivation animosity in the region.

Bismarck"s can be fried goal during the congress of Berlin was no to upset Germany"s condition on the global platform. He did not wish to disrupt the 3 Emperor"s organization by choosing in between Russia and also Austria together an ally.<1> In stimulate to preserve peace in Europe, Bismarck sought come convince other European diplomats on dividing up the Balkans so regarding foster better stability. During the process of division, Russia began to feel short-changed even though she eventually gained self-reliance for Bulgaria. One can thus see the underpinnings that the alliance problems in Europe before the an initial World War.

One factor why Bismarck was able to mediate the miscellaneous tensions existing at the conference of Berlin stemmed native his diplomatic persona. He was an ardent pacifist when worldwide affairs did no pertain come Germany directly. Top top the various other hand, Bismarck to be aggressive whenever Germany"s nationwide interest to be on the line. At the conference of Berlin, Germany as a result, Bismarck declared impartiality on instead of of Germany in ~ the Congress. In fact, at the time Germany go not have "active interests in the Balkans" therefore Bismarck had no "reason to cheat anyone." This claim enabled him come preside end the negotiations with a to crawl eye because that foul play. A major concern was the as ottoman "influence ebbed native its western frontier, the administrations and militaries of the other three realms edged ever closer come one another."<2>

According come Henry Kissinger, the congress witnessed a shift in Bismarck"s Realpolitik.<3> until then, as Germany had come to be too an effective for isolation, his plan was to keep the 3 Emperors league of Russia, Austria-Hungary and also Germany. Currently that he can no longer rely on Russia"s alliance, he began to kind relations with as many potential enemies as possible. Neither Germany or Austria-Hungary were keen to check out the please of the ottoman Empire, "although they to be hardly friends" castle "regarded the prospect of an equipped rebellion overthrowing an created monarchy with substantial reserve." Bismarck also saw the Balkans as a "necessary conduit because that the facility of" Germany"s "imperial intends in the center East."<4>


The Turkish chief delegate to be a Greek Christian, that would take the brunt that the blame for the "disaster that was bound to overtake the Ottoman empire at the Congress."<5> before he had the ability to agree to any proposal, however, without having actually referred it earlier to Istanbul because that a response. He regularly had to wait numerous days.<6> Every opportunity was taken by the various other powers to snub the Turks, such as once an orchestra play music from all other countries represented yet "refused to carry out battler with Turkish music."<5>

Ottoman Finance

To pay because that the Crimean War, the Sultan had taken out huge loans from europe Banks. In 1875, he had actually defaulted on payment. Loan "stood at an ext than 200 million pounds sterling."<7> The 18th protocol the the Berlin conference authorized the facility at Constantinople of a financial Commission who members would be appointed through the great Powers. The Commission would certainly investigate complaints from bondholders that the footrest debts, and propose a solution. In 1881, the footrest Public Debt administration was collection up, which collected taxed and handed them end to the european creditors.


Italy was dissatisfied with the outcomes of the Congress, and also the situation in between Greece and also the Ottoman empire was left unresolved. The Bosnians and also Herzegovinans would likewise prove to it is in a trouble to the Austro-Hungarian empire in later decades. The league of three Emperors, developed in 1873, was destroyed, together Russia saw absence of German support on the issue of Bulgaria"s full independence together a breach the loyalty and also alliance. There was no commitment on a border in between Greece and also Turkey. In 1881, ~ protracted negotiations, a damage border was welcomed following a marine demonstration the the Powers" strength. The conference sowed the seeds of additional conflicts, consisting of the Balkan Wars, and the first World War.

Up till Berlin, Turkey had been regarded as a european power. Stripped of practically all europe territory, it was no much longer viewed as part of Europe.<8> The Congress also successfully show-cased Berlin together a europe capital and also for the "first time as a … diplomatic center."<9>

According to Fromkin, a adjust in Britain"s connections with the Ottoman also resulted in the Empire transforming towards Bismarck"s open up arms. Having aided the Ottomans against Russia in the Crimean War, under wilhelm Ewart Gladstone Britain"s perspective towards the empire changed; "Claiming the the Sultan"s routine was a "bottomless pit that fraud and also falsehood," Gladstone had actually withdrawn brother protection and influence indigenous Constantinople."<10> Increasingly, Germany stepped right into this void, ending up being increasingly significant until in 1914 a official defense alliance to be signed, which took the Ottoman realm into world War i on Germany"s side. That brought about the lose of the Empire"s non-European provinces, i m sorry were separated up and also distributed to the victors. Turkey, however, emerged as a secular country state adhering to the contract of Lausanne in July 1923, and avoided the kind of humiliating terms that were applied on Germany. Under your post-war leader, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk the Turks successfully argued that the Turkish human being should no be blamed because that the mistakes of the ottoman government.

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The conference of Berlin raised the Concert of Europe come the condition of the de facto federal government of the world. The Concert, however, lacked accountability and represented europe interests, no those the the conquered or that non-European states. However the idea that a human body that could bring an elderly representatives of nation-states together and allow cooperation would feed into the formation of the organization of Nations and also of that is successor, the joined Nation. The Congress, however, subordinated the interests of the world of the an ar with which that was mostly concerned, the Balkans, come those the the great powers. The civilization will only shift towards becoming a fairer, more just place for all civilization when nations begin to consider the understand of humankind as a whole, of i m sorry their own interests room part. And cease to act just or almost always just in a means that promotes self-interest in ~ the cost of the understand of others.


Great Britain

Marquess that SalisburyLord Russell


Prince GorchakovCount ShuvalovBaron d"Oubril


Prince HohenloheChancellor von Bülow


Count AndrássyCount KárolyiBaron Heinrich knife von Haymerle


Monsieur WaddingtonComte de Saint-VallierMonsieur Desprey


Count CortiCount De Launay

Ottoman Empire

Karatheodori PashaSadoullah BeyMehemet Ali PashaCatholicos Mkrtich Khrimian (representing Armenian population)